September 30, 2011

Get into the BOX!

Test build successful!  On to the next phase!

The motherboard is attached to the case using stand-offs.  These are little brass fixtures that screw into the appropriate case holes to match the board mounting holes.  You can eyeball it pretty easily.  If you really want to be sure a template is a good choice.

Next up you want to mount the power supply.  Mine goes fan down on the bottom of the case (which is very common now).
My power supply is modular.  So you only need to use the cables you want.  The rest you store in a bag for later.
Next up are the drives.  For the DVD you remove a panel from the front of the tower and slide it into place. This tower is tool-less so it has some handy knobs that lock the drives down.
DVD in place!  Next the hard drive.
This case comes with some rails that snap onto each side of a standard drive.  Then you just slide it into position.

Finally the motherboard. Start with the back plate which labels all your various ports.  It just snaps into place.  Next you place the board slide it towards the back and secure using the mounting screws into the a fore mentioned stand-offs.
Using the back panel and some small black zip-ties you work the various cables through the channels to the proper position.  Less spaghetti cables mean better cooling.  I start by running power to everything, then data connectors to everything else. Including the case cables for the on off buttons and front panel USB and audio ports. Next I systematically secure the cables.

Any add-on cards, like a graphics card requires removal of a back panel (usually a screw, or you might have to bend-snap it off) and securing it into the socket.

Now you attach keyboard, mouse and monitor.  Plug in the power supply, hit the power supply on switch (if it has one).  Then push the start button.

TECH SUPERSTITION!  NEVER close up the side panels prior to starting up your system for the first time.  In fact, leave them off till after you install the OS.

Note how clean of cables this case is?  It is a work of art.

Here it is running!

Next up, Installing the OS.  This is something I may not blog about... Not sure yet.  Its a lot of looking at this:

September 29, 2011

Building a computer.

Lets say you want to make this metal box into a computer... Further you have all the other parts as well.

First thing is to set up everything and do a test build.  You start by putting the processor into the motherboard.

The insertion is minor thanks to the zero insertion force style socket.  First you open the mouse trap looking device, line up the slots on the processor with the socket and being careful not to touch the pins on the bottom or the metal on the top, you drop it into place.

The sound made while closing is not unlike fingernails on a chalk board.  It sounds like your destroying the pins and is very disconcerting.  Next you either apply some conductive paste and put the heat-sink fan into place.

It has four pins that push through and lock into place, you should make sure you plug in the fan to the appropriate place on the board.  This now becomes a nice handle for maneuvering your board.

Next up install the RAM.  Pretty easy and a little tricky.  This is one time you MUST consult your manual to find the placement.  This becomes simple if you have four matching sticks of RAM.

The packaging your board came in is perfect for a test build. I next installed the graphics card, hooked up my monitor, keyboard and mouse.
Finally run the various power supply cords to their various sockets.  In this case we have the main power the secondary power and Graphics card additional power.
Next you start the system up by gaping two little pins on the motherboard (RTFM).

If you have good components this is what you will see.

Now we know everything works.  Time to install the stuff.

September 28, 2011

My new Obelisk

My old computer died.  I tried to revive it, but the parts are out of stock and problematic to find.

After perusing Toms Hardware guide, I got a battle plan of what I wanted in a system. I checked out the usual vendors and was not happy with what I saw .vs. what I wanted.  Even Costco had some nice towers but too much $$ for too little power.

As I was pricing a system at New Egg when I came across a DIY system that was 90% exactly what I wanted.This little beauty was just perfect!

Here is my system out of the shipping box.  Big black tower in the back.  Motherboard, power supply and processor in front.  In the foreground the Hard drive and RAM.  I salvaged my DVD drive and Graphics card from my old system before recycling it responsibly.

Towers are very important consideration.  Airflow, accessibility and aesthetics all come into play.  The only complaint is the metal is a thinner gauge then I would like.  There is a lot of quality in the product.  The inside was painted to match.  Both side panels have thumb screws for easy access.  All the cables are clearly labeled and plenty long enough for any motherboard.  The front, back and top fans are large powerful and quite, bonus for the pretty blue lights in the front fan.  If you need additional cooling you can add three more without any problem.  The front panel has two USB, Headset and mic and eSATA.  Which is pretty standard.  You have huge add on potential for additional drives and devices.  I am considering a card reader.

The Motherboard is excellent!  It has the current intel chipsets, can handle two graphics cards and up to an i7 Intel processor.  No downside at all!  Everything is clearly marked and well laid out. The tech support is difficult to understand due to the accent.  However, the e-mail support works well, it just takes longer.

Intel i5 2500k is a great chip for gamers.  It is inexpensive and benchmarks above several i7 cousins.  It comes with a nice heat-sink fan and a manual that is good for something...

Hard drives above 500 gigabyte are more then enough.  1-Terabyte is cheap enough, so... why not? I like Seagate for no particular reason.

RAM can be tricky.  Matching the speed to your system build takes a little bit of research.  G.Skills have good RAM at a good price.  These are dual channel DDR3 1600.  They have a built on heat sink and offer a lifetime warranty.

Finally the power supply.  You need to have enough power to run everything and more.  Most manufactured PC's short you in this area.  Dell, HP, Acer, all barely squeak by with the minimum required levels.

This beast is by corsair, it also has the advantage of being modular.  You only plug in the cables you need for your system.  Sweet!

September 21, 2011


Because factory owners pay NO EXCISE TAXES for the support of the roads that carry their materials, raw or finished, and NO PROPERTY TAXES for the support of the schools that (mis)educate its work force, and NO CORPORATE INCOME TAXES for the support of the armed forces that keep the factory safe… Oh… you mean they DO pay all those taxes and more?

September 19, 2011

Rex Murphy: The media’s love affair with a disastrous president

As the bad economic news continues to emanate from the United States — with a double-dip recession now all but certain — a reckoning is overdue. American journalism will have to look back at the period starting with Barack Obama’s rise, his assumption of the presidency and his conduct in it to the present, and ask itself how it came to cast aside so many of its vital functions. In the main, the establishment American media abandoned its critical faculties during the Obama campaign — and it hasn’t reclaimed them since.
Much of the Obama coverage was orchestrated sychophancy. They glided past his pretensions — when did a presidential candidate before “address the world” from the Brandenberg Gate in Berlin? They ignored his arrogance — “You’re likeable enough, Hillary.” And they averted their eyes from his every gaffe — such as the admission that he didn’t speak “Austrian.”
The media walked right past the decades-long association of Obama with the weird and racist pastor Jeremiah Wright. In the midst of the brief stormlet over the issue, one CNN host — inexplicably — decided that CNN was going to be a “Wright-free zone.” He could have hung out a sign: “No bad news about Obama here.”
The media trashed Hillary. They burned Republicans. They ransacked Sarah Palin and her family. But Obama, the cool, the detached, the oracular Obama — he strolled to the presidency.
Palin, in particular, stands out as Obama’s opposite in the media’s eyes. As much as they genuflected to the one, they felt the need to turn rottweiler toward the other. If Obama was sacred , classy, intellectual and cosmopolitan, why then Palin must be malevolent, trashy, dumb and pure backwoods-ignorant.
Every doubt they hid from themselves about Obama, every potential embarrassment they tucked under the blanket of their superior sensibilities, they furiously over-compensated for by their remorseless hounding of Palin — from utterly trivial e-mails, to blogger Andrew Sullivan’s weird speculations about Palin’s womb, musings that put the Obama “Birther” fantasies into a realm near sanity. (We are now seeing an echo of that — with a new book promoting all sorts of unconfirmed gossip about Palin, including her alleged sexual dalliance with a basketball star.)
As a result, the press gave the great American republic an untried, unknown and, it is becoming more and more frighteningly clear, incompetent figure as President. Under Obama, America’s foreign policies are a mixture of confusion and costly impotence. It is increasingly bypassed or derided; the great approach to the Muslim world, symbolized by the Cairo speech, is in tatters. Its debt and deficits are a weight on the entire global economy. And the office of presidency is less and less a symbol of strength.
To the degree the press neglected its function as watchdog and turned cupbearer to a Styrofoam demigod, it is a partner in the flaws and failures of what is turning out to be one of the most miserable performances in the modern history of the American presidency.

September 11, 2011

Thanks, Smokey!

Okay this is one of those videos that I was embarrassed when I laughed.

September 10, 2011

Devil's Dictionary, Obama Edition


The Devil's Dictionary, Obama Speech Edition
Abraham Lincoln: Not the founder of the Republican Party.
Basic protection(s): Any regulation(s) that Barack Obama believes will reduce the ability of financial, medical, or fossil fuel companies to earn a profit, especially any regulation based on the Progressive view that individual Americans are too stupid to be allowed to make our own decisions in the most important areas of our daily lives. Also, any regulation that strengthens the power of unions.
Different theory: Economic policy views supported by history, evidence, and research by Barack Obama's own (former) top economic advisor, but not supported by Barack Obama.
Doing nothing: If referencing a Republican-controlled chamber of Congress, not giving the president at least 90% of what he wants even while passing legislation. Not applicable to a Democrat-controlled chamber of Congress, even if not passing any legislation.
Fair shake: The additional amount of money the government can extract from society's most successful by turning success into a vice and lack of success into a virtue; similar to shakedown.
Fair share: More than you pay in taxes now, especially if you are in the top 1% of earners who already pay more in income taxes than the bottom 95% of taxpayers and who pay nearly twice as much as a share of taxes than they earn as a share of national income.
Fairness: A never-reached situation in which the "rich" are paying their Fair share and Warren Buffett is happy.
Help: Buy one group of Americans' votes with money earned by those who pay most federal income taxes by giving the latter group a Fair shake.
Jolt: A policy dramatic enough to increase Barack Obama's poll numbers. A cola I drank in college.
Listen to every new proposal: Tailor a bill based on "suggestions" from the head of the AFL-CIO, SEIU, or AFSCME; Suggestions from Republicans responded to with "I won."
Most fortunate: Hardest working, smartest, most entrepreneurial, most responsible for job creation, paying more than others in taxes, or being part of any other such category so deserving of income confiscation, over-regulation, union domination, or any other punishment the Obama Administration can implement over Republican opposition which is based on Rigid ideas.

Nothing controversial: Highly controversial.
Paid for: Funded by increasing Fairness. Spending increases andFair Shakes implemented now with the net deficit theoretically funded by a promise of spending reductions later.
Payroll tax cut: A temporary benefit to some working Americans and businesses to be Paid for by creating a permanent penalty on other working Americans and businesses.
Political crisis: See "Urgent time for our country."
Right now: When to pass a "jobs bill," in which there is Nothing controversial, because we are in an Urgent time for our country.
Rigid idea: A position based on reading the plain text of the Constitution and thus not worthy of serious consideration, especially if it impedes Fairness or the implementation of Basic protections.
Sincerely believe: If referring to a Democrat, believe sincerely. If referring to a Republican, must be stupid or crazy to believe.
Tax loopholes; tax breaks: Advantages in the tax code that go to companies or people who do not share President Obama's goal ofFairness and who do not contribute enough to Democratic campaigns and thus must be shifted to the favor of those who do.
Urgent time for our country: A period during which Barack Obama's poll numbers are falling, causing him to fear that he will lose re-election and therefore that oceans may start to rise again.

September 07, 2011

It’s now disrespectful to refuse to disagree with Obama?

September 03, 2011

Madeon - Pop Culture (Dance Video)

One of the better dance video's.

Best laid plans, get screwed up...

My computers motherboard fried. I calculated over what to do and opted to get a replacement motherboard. Actually two generations higher then the previous, with some of the overheating issues resolved. Along with some nifty chipset updates.

I also decided to jump into Windows 7, so I ordered a new HD and got the upgrade.

Today was my first day off and I was very excited to get into my system. I had a few issues with the rear IO panel changes. I bought a metal nibbler and made some crude adjustments. Then I found the front IO panel interface cable was different as well. Argh! Who changes a CABLE interface?

So I got online with the motherboard folks and they directed me to the original manufacturers parts department. I need the Front IO board, The rear board and two cables. I got the part numbers and found the much needed cable was out of stock.

The representative did some digging and found a replacement part that will work (fingers cross). So I ordered up the parts and now I am waiting. Knowing in the back of my mind this whole thing might just blow up in my face.