Oldest computer you have still in working condition

vbimport

#1

So, here’s the topic for the day. What is the oldest computer that you have, still in good operating condition?

You don’t have to be using it daily, just something left over from years ago that you haven’t gotten around to pitching.

I have an AMD based system, using Windows XP, that I keep in reserve for those very rare occasions when I need my film scanner. My Canon film scanner will not run on anything newer, and is a pain in the butt to get it working in XP, as it was originally intended for Windows 95 and 98. So I keep this system on hand and ready to run. All I have to do is plug in a monitor, mouse and keyboard and she is set.

My computer specs:
AMD Athlon XP 2500+ Barton Core (1.84ghz of processing power!)
Biostar M7NCG 400 motherboard (Nforce 2 chipset with onboard video!)
768mb of DDR1 ram (matches the most I ever had in any of my Nforce 2 boards)
GeForce 3 Ti 200 video card (my first expensive video card…darn thing was $150 new, and I can still feel the pain :frowning: )
One blazing fast WD 40gb hard drive.
NEC 3540A DVDRW
All in one mud-ugly generic case I’ve modified for airflow. The original Fortron Source psu is still going strong.

This was a honey of a machine back in 2004. I built it for my nephew and inherited it back. I think the DVD drive is a bit newer, as it originally had just a CD writer and a DVD rom drive. And he was using the onboard video, no way I was giving him my gaming card!


#2

I think we’ve a Compaq from 1999 or 2000, with an AMD K6-2 or K6-III. Shouldn’t be clocked any faster than somewhere in the 500 MHz range, should have at best 128 MB RAM, a 20 GB (?) hard drive, and not much worth a mention otherwise.

My dad might still have my old HP Pavilion XL768, also from 2000, sitting somewhere in his house…had a more powerful setup with 900 MHz AMD Athlon, 128 MB RAM (upped to 256 MB around 2002), 60 GB Maxtor DiamondMax 22 (model 96147U8) hard drive, shipped with an nVidia Riva TNT card (upped to a Radeon 9000 Pro), with my first DVDRW drive (HP DVD Writer 530r/LiteOn SOHW-832S) and my second DVDRW drive (Sony DW-D22A/LiteOn SOHW-1633S)…though I also vaguely remember my LiteOn LTR-52327S being in that system as well. Added a Seagate 300 (200?) GB hard drive and had to fight with the overlay software to get the setup perfect. AMD northbridge, VIA southbridge, added in USB 2.0 via a PCI card with an NEC controller, and added fans with pretty blue lights. Motherboard manufactured by Asus, interestingly enough.

But the oldest I know still works – because I have turned it on within the past two months – is a 2005 Sony VAIO VGC-RB43. Well, mostly. I killed the motherboard with a bad flash, so it was replaced with an Intel D101GGC board, which cut the max RAM support in half (2 GB is the cap, as opposed to 4 GB, but I only ever had 1 GB RAM for it), switched me from ICH6 and 915G south/north combo to ATI Radeon Xpress 200 north/ATI SB400 south combo. Poor USB performance due to the southbride (apparently ULi produced a compatible southbridge with much better USB 2.0 performance), and a much slower POST process than the original board. The SATA controller in the southbridge is just comprised of 2x Silicon Image SIL3112 (not bad, and performs well with the one SATA optical drive I have), and the PATA ports are stable enough. Realtek audio, Realtek NIC, no RAID, no support for FireWire (original Sony/Intel board had Firewire by Lucent/Agere/LSI I believe).

Added a Radeon X1300 Pro to the VAIO, but took it out shortly after the ball bearings began to annoy me. Original HDD in it is a Samsung SP2004C at 200 GB, 7200RPM, SATA 1.5Gb/s. Added a Seagate ST…uh… well, it’s a 320 GB model, 7200 RPM, SATA 3.0Gb/s maybe, Barracuda 7200.7(?); then later added a Western Digital Green 500 GB model. (So I magically had 1 TB of storage by 2008 or so). Current ODD are LiteOn LH-20A1P and Optiarc AD-7201S (the latter pulled from an HP system).

Never did quite rig the front LEDs up to the motherboard properly in that VAIO…:doh:


#3

Its kind of interesting, looking at my system a little bit closer and realizing just how much of it has become obsolete in [B]ten[/B] years. The motherboard comes with a parallel printer port, a game port, only two (count em) USB 2.0 ports, a VGA port and no other kind of video connection.

A serial port…yes those are still showing up on new motherboards. And it has firewire. When was the last time you used firewire? At least it has 100mbps ethernet built in.

No SATA, only PATA/IDE connections on the motherboard, along with the floppy. No PCI-e, just AGP video and PCI slots.

We become so inured to change in computers that the accumulated improvements don’t really make an impact, until you look back a bit. A luxury/high performance vehicle from 2004 could still be a marvelous piece of machinery, and perfectly useable. A high performance computer from that year is not comparable to an entry level laptop from this year. :slight_smile:


#4

We posted virtually simultaneously Albert. :slight_smile: Your Sony sounds a bit like a Frankenstein monster at this point.

Do you yell out [I]Its Alive[/I] when you start it? :bigsmile:


#5

I had to do some security updating first since I rarely use this computer online.
I’m writing this post from it.
It was manufactured Sept 1999 but was BIOS flashed with a 2001 BIOS.
I’m using the newer harddrive which has XP Pro installed . It has been the main OS for a while.
The original Hitachi DeskStar is still in it 13.5GB but the system information says 12.64GB. It has W98 SE on it. I can get online with it but websites just refuse to work with the only browsers available for 98. A few will barely work but not club.myce. I tested it 2 or 3 months ago. I have to go into the BIOS & set it as the boot drive . No F12 option to use.
Here are the stats:
OS Name Microsoft Windows XP Professional
Version 5.1.2600 Service Pack 3 Build 2600
System Manufacturer IBM 300PL
System Model 6862N2U
System Type X86-based PC
Processor x86 Family 6 Model 7 Stepping 3 GenuineIntel ~448 Mhz
BIOS Version/Date IBM NVKT58AUS, 7/19/2001
SMBIOS Version 2.1
Windows Directory C:\WINDOWS
System Directory C:\WINDOWS\system32
Boot Device \Device\HarddiskVolume1
Locale United States
User Name
Total Physical Memory 768.00 MB
Available Physical Memory 424.70 MB
Total Virtual Memory 2.00 GB
Description Disk drive
Manufacturer (Standard disk drives)
Model IBM-DPTA-371360
Bytes/Sector 512
Media Loaded Yes
Media Type Fixed hard disk media
Partitions 1
SCSI Bus 0
SCSI Logical Unit 0
SCSI Port 0
SCSI Target ID 1
Sectors/Track 63
Size 12.64 GB (13,571,712,000 bytes)
Total Cylinders 1,650
Total Sectors 26,507,250
Total Tracks 420,750
Tracks/Cylinder 255
Partition Disk #1, Partition #0
Partition Size 12.64 GB (13,571,679,744 bytes)
Partition Starting Offset 32,256 bytes

Description Disk drive
Manufacturer (Standard disk drives)
Model Maxtor 6Y080P0
Bytes/Sector 512
Media Loaded Yes
Media Type Fixed hard disk media
Partitions 1
SCSI Bus 0
SCSI Logical Unit 0
SCSI Port 0
SCSI Target ID 0
Sectors/Track 63
Size 76.33 GB (81,956,689,920 bytes)
Total Cylinders 9,964
Total Sectors 160,071,660
Total Tracks 2,540,820
Tracks/Cylinder 255
Partition Disk #0, Partition #0
Partition Size 76.33 GB (81,956,657,664 bytes)
Partition Starting Offset 32,256 bytes


#6

Back on my main computer now.
I also have a working Commodore 64 .
It’s old but not marked with any date . On the outside anyway.
I never had it online.
A friend that has passed away told me he had a Commodore 64 online.
Described dialing an old style phone withe the old style handset.
You put that in a cradle for it which was the modem. I think he said the connection speed was 200 baud.


#7

My Athlon 800 from around 2000,with 1024 MB memory,20 GB HD and SoundBlaster Live!1024,since 2005 I used it only 2-3 times a year for special purposes…since a few months on the attic,because I found a capture card to my ‘taste’ :wink:

GeForce 3 Ti 200 video card (my first expensive video card…darn thing was $150 new, and I can still feel the pain )

Reason why I kept my 1st machine IS for the videocard…:bigsmile:

I have the AGP version of this 1:

About 230€ in 2001-2002…:eek:

But it had some ‘features’ which weren’t mainstream in the early 2000’s…;):disagree:


#8

[QUOTE=Kerry56;2736190]We posted virtually simultaneously Albert. :slight_smile: Your Sony sounds a bit like a Frankenstein monster at this point.

Do you yell out [I]Its Alive[/I] when you start it? :bigsmile:[/QUOTE]
It does that by itself. One beep indicates life, the VAIO logo flickers, the optical drives beep, and if power has been removed the fans start a mini hurricane akin to a roar. Then everything settles down and you just hear the hamsters inside the hard drives throwing tiny pebbles around.

[QUOTE=cholla;2736193]I had to do some security updating first since I rarely use this computer online.
I’m writing this post from it.
It was manufactured Sept 1999 but was BIOS flashed with a 2001 BIOS.
I’m using the newer harddrive which has XP Pro installed . It has been the main OS for a while.
The original Hitachi DeskStar is still in it 13.5GB but the system information says 12.64GB. It has W98 SE on it. I can get online with it but websites just refuse to work with the only browsers available for 98. A few will barely work but not club.myce. I tested it 2 or 3 months ago. I have to go into the BIOS & set it as the boot drive . No F12 option to use.
Here are the stats:
[cool stats snipped to save space in quote][/QUOTE]That computer sounds downright nice for the time period, and still sounds nice to me…if only because all the parts you’ve listed intrigue me. :slight_smile:

[QUOTE=roadworker;2736197]
I have the AGP version of this 1:

About 230€ in 2001-2002…:eek:

But it had some ‘features’ which weren’t mainstream in the early 2000’s…;):disagree:[/QUOTE]I wanted a card from that series so badly, but I had to settle for video card first, then a TV Wonder Pro. And when I broke the coax connector by over-tightening (with no way to solder the broken connection), I went for a TV Wonder Elite.


#9

[QUOTE=Albert;2736213]I wanted a card from that series so badly, but I had to settle for video card first, then a TV Wonder Pro. And when I broke the coax connector by over-tightening (with no way to solder the broken connection), I went for a TV Wonder Elite.[/QUOTE]

Too bad…:(…because the macrovison hack really worked with this 1…:bow::clap:


#10

[QUOTE=Albert;2736213]
That computer sounds downright nice for the time period, and still sounds nice to me…if only because all the parts you’ve listed intrigue me. :slight_smile:
[/QUOTE]
That’s probably why it’s still working.
Not to mislead as I’m sure it is obvious . The Maxtor 6Y080P0 76.33 GB was a later addition but an IDE drive of course. Since XP wasn’t out it was also later/
The Hitachi DeskStar 13.5GB is the original 1999 harddrive. It came with W98 SE installed.
The video card is onboard .
I don’t know if I can find a link to the optional video card that was available for this model . It is what I would call an IBM proprietary AGP card.
This link has some nice pictures of the same computer with the AGP card installed. Scroll down & there are a couple of shots of this card.
http://www.vogons.org/viewtopic.php?f=25&t=37640

Mine does have a Mad Dog Predator PCI audio card MD-PS6.
I also added a 4 port USB 2.0 PCI card.
I removed the onboard PCI dial up modem but I think it is stored somewhere .


#11

The monitor is also IBM an E74 CRT .
That would be an internal PCI dial-up modem I removed.
It wasn’t “onboard” . It’s been a while since I could even use dial-up.
My DSL is on a dry loop . To those that don’t know that means no phone service on it.


#12

Sitting here next to my left knee is my computer - a 900MHz AMD Athlon, purchased in the penultimate month of the 20th century.

Over the years the memory has quadrupled, two new hard drives & a few expansion cards added, the fans, graphics card & power supply upgraded to something quieter, a faulty motherboard replaced and the original DVD reader replaced with various CD & DVD writers (currently a SH-S202N& DW1620). But the processor & case are the originals.

There are now 6 computers in this house (9 if my sisters are home), but mine is the oldest & slowest. :sad:Somehow I always seem to be too busy sorting out everyone else’s computers to do anything about replacing mine.


#13

[QUOTE=Ibex;2736358]- a 900MHz AMD Athlon, purchased in the penultimate month of the 20th century. [/QUOTE]

I’m guessing the date is November 2000 but maybe 1999 ?

My MB is original but I did have to replace 3 capacitors on the MB.
They were some of those that were made with a “new” but bad chemical combination. The ones on my MB had just swelled but not leaked.
My original drive was a CD ROM . I should have kept it but disposed of it when I installed a DVD drive.


#14

Fully working - Some Compaq pizza case K6-2 333MHz.

Also working - K6-III 500MHz (x2), Duron 800MHz, Celeron 1GHz, Duron 1GHz etc.

I do have a 486 mobo and cpu which probably works fine - I use it as a dummy load for AT PSU:s (if I need 12 volts for some labbing…)


#15

[QUOTE=cholla;2736403]I’m guessing the date is November 2000 but maybe 1999 ?
[/QUOTE]
Spot on, November 2000. :clap:

Some put their faith in mathematics, others are seduced by the novelty of all the numbers changing at once. :rolleyes: :bigsmile:

The original motherboard was a crappy Chaintech. :Z The system HDD failed and when I replaced it there were some other problems. Wasn’t sure if the motherboard had actually failed, it was always a bit uncooperative, but replacing it with a secondhand Asus A7V fixed everything (which is now 13-14 years old and still going strong).


#16

A HP Compaq DC5100mt is my NAS. My best guess it’s from 2006/2007. It runs FreeNAS.

Another kinda similar system is my Media Center.

A HP dc7800p is my VM server. Also from 2007. It runs VmWare ESX 5. It runs 2 linux servers simultaneously by default and when i get it upgraded it will run some Microsoft servers as well.

A HP Compaq 6910p is my laptop. 2007 as well. It runs Windows 8.1. Don’t move it too quickly, it will reboot.

A HP Compaq nc6120 is my wife’s laptop. It’s from 2005. It runs Windows 7.1, but is getting a bit slow these days.

Got another laptop laying around somewhere, also an old hp laptop, but the hinges are broken. Also about 8 years old. Think it’s a 7400 with Windows 7 on it.

I got all stuff from people and companies who thought these old systems would never be able to function. All still work, some have their quirks. They all survived several power failures around here. Pretty strong stuff that HP stuff.

We’re poor. :slight_smile:


#17

Its my Commodore vic 20 from 1981. I only use it for games or experiments once in a while. Every now and then somebody will write a new demo for it. When somebody writes demo for it or makes a new cartridge its a fun little machine. Besides that I have 2 c64’s and an IBM 300pl that I use as a jukebox mame machine.:smiley:


#18

Theres an ethernet modem for the C64 called comet64. In any case I had my vic 20 call up a freenet internet provider while using the commodore 1200 baud modem. All in text of course but it workded.


#19

C64 up in the attic.:wink:


#20

Got me a “new” notebook. An HP 550 from the year 2009.
After updating it, thouroughly cleaning it and putting 3GB of memory in it it runs Windows 8.1 64bit amazingly fast.

There’s only one disadvantage. No harddisk activity led! :frowning: