View Full Version : OT: Need help being a a computer "Good Samaritan."

08-02-2008, 10:23 AM
My oldest sis' is computer poor (Pentium 1!) and I'm trying to do a freebie upgrade for her.

I'm finishing up this morning resuscitating an ol' reliable Dell PII 400 I had up in the attic. I threw in a small, freshly FAT32 formatted Seagate HD and (finally) installed a shiny, new W2000 OS. I say finally 'cuz I had all manner of problems getting the low level stuff working (due to my ignorance) but a search of past threads where Evan and other fellers in the forum quickly sorted my lack of PC experience produced the solution and now all is well. It boots and W2000 pops up with no error messages and is ready to do my bidding. Thanks guys, I'm so proud!:) This forum is a fantastic resource.

Anyhoo, I'd like to do everything I can in the comfort of my shop so's I can get the "new" one as ready as possible to reduce the pain when it comes time to shift over her favorites, email stuff, etc. from the ol' tired box to this hoefully less tired one.

(1) I have all my PC's here at home on a wireless network and would like to access it so I can get online to download all the W2000 updates that were available before they shut off it's support. I don't have a spare wireless card to plug in but if memory serves, the wireless router has plugs for a network cable to be used. Do I just plug in a cable, fire up the new guy and hopefully W2000 will somehow sense what I want to do and provide me with a wizard to talk to my network? I have a floppy with my network security settings on it.

(2) Once I'm online and get all the updates installed, what's the best way to prepare the machine to migrate all her favorites, settings, etc. when I get to her house? Both machines have functioning floppy drives but no CD burners.

I'm guessing Windows has some wizards to help with the process but can they be trusted and if so how does one unleash them?

Thanks for looking and any forthcoming advice.:)


08-02-2008, 10:43 AM
Chances are good that if you have a working network device that all you need to do is plug in a cable to the router and it will be online.

On question 2, it isn't feasible to copy much of anything using just a floppy drive. About the best you can manage is bookmarks (favorites) and not much else. Instead, hook up the old hard drive as a slave and then you can easily copy the entire contents to a subdirectory of the new drive so that anything that might be missed now is available later. I assume the new drive is considerably larger than the old one.

Just Bob Again
08-02-2008, 12:50 PM
A worthwhile and almost essential add-on is a USB interface. You can get them for fairly cheap and that lets you use thumb drives and peripherals with the older machines that have no USB port. Lets you get a cheap USB hard drive or CD to move files around. Adapters for old hard drives are only maybe $25 to make them into USB hard drives.

08-02-2008, 07:22 PM
Thanks Evan, after plugging in the network cable W2000 asked a couple questions, popped up the MS update site and is busily downloading and installing the forty-leventh critical update. Slick as a whistle. Shoot, yesterday I couldn't even spell network consultant and now I is one!;) Yeah, right.

Hey there Just Bob, thanks for reminding me. I have a USB external drive with plenty of space that I can use in the conversion process. Both machines have the old, slower USB gizmos but there's not a whole lot of stuff to copy.

I did root around in the attic some more and found an old Sony CD/RW drive and stuck it in. It works well so now she can burn some picture CD's like she's been wanting.

Knock on wood, it looks like it's been a good computer day for me. I've been checking around trying to decide which laptop to get for my daughter Rachel as she starts college in a couple weeks. I ended up at the local Best Buy store and got a Dell for a decent price. This is the back to school "No Sales Tax" weekend here in Tennessee so I saved that 9.25% It's got a 2 gig dual processor, 3 gigs ram, CD/DVD burner, 2 meg web cam, wireless onboard...yada, yada, yada and even more yadas I don't have a clue what they do. This is the 1st new computer (other than an Amiga 2000) I've ever bought.

There was quite line at the store in the computer department & by the time we got in there, our preferred model was sold out other than the display unit. I requested that they order me one and still got the sale price with no tax billed. Should be here Friday. Actually I was happy with the whole process. I kinda hate going in there cuz' every time I go I end up walking to the car in a happy mood and want to go back & buy a huge-screen TV. Fortunately, ain't no way I can afford one.

Only downer is now I've got to climb the Vista hill. Hopefully, it'll do what she needs to do to be a happy little newbie college student and doesn't drive me crazy in the process.

ps: As I post this, Gates's boys say I have 65 more updates to go at 65.7 m/bytes. Sure am glad I have a cable connection!