My Dell is dying, advice on which PC to buy and how to empty old one!

  mansla 13:55 PM 25 Jul 11
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Hi folks, first time here. My Dell destop is dying, its on its last legs apparently, including displaying the dreaded black screen with bipping cursor for hours on end. I am a dinosaur when it comes to the latest technology. I have always bought Dells, budget-end, and my current one is 7 years old. I have looked at Dells website and am completed befuddled by the choice these days, so to sum it up, my requirements are:

Desktop PC for our small business. Office - Excel, Word, Powerpoint Heavy internet research, lots of swapping between multiple open web pages Heavy Outlook email use - large graphic attachments, photos etc Photo editing, video storage (or I suppose I could get a separate hard drive) Various software I use, Citrix, Winscribe etc (remote access, digital dictation) Music downloading and playback, CD burning Most importantly, SPEED! I have spent too many hours of life fighting with my slow old PC I want something super fast to get me out of the office and on with my life! Also need new printer with automatic feed scanner and one that prints envelopes easily and not chew them up like mine does.

Also, need to know what I need to do with all the stuff on my old PC. Presumably docs, photos etc which I have backups on USB storage keys/disks but what about emails - how do I transfer all those (they are not all on mys IPS server).

Many thanks Mansla

  onthelimit1 15:11 PM 25 Jul 11

Transfer - assuming old PC is XP, you'll need to download the Windoze easy transfer software to that one. Run it and save everything you want to an external HDD. Run easy transfer on new W7 PC - job done (I did just that a few weeks ago, and it was straightforward).

Choice is huge, but most new PCs have 4Gb RAM which is ample for what you want. Half a terrabyte HDD is not unusual. You will find the speed of any of the new machines much better than a clogged-up XP. Office 2010 is disliked by many who are used to 2003. Option is Open Office (free compared with a ludicrous amount for the Windows version). All the programmes are compatible.

  onthelimit1 16:08 PM 25 Jul 11

Forgot the link here

  carver 18:06 PM 25 Jul 11

You haven't said what your budget is, a decent CPU is a must have and that could be a PC that has a Intel Core i7-2600K 3.40GHz (Sandybridge), hard drives are so cheap you can get a 1TB SATA 6Gb/s 64MB Cache hard drive for £65 so 2 of them is more than enough storage.

It depends on what you want to spend, some one could sugest a perfect PC for you but then you could just say it's too much.

  961 19:24 PM 25 Jul 11

I'd go Dell again. Reliable, well priced

I'd suggest buying from the business range rather than the consumer computers that you see when you first visit the site. There's a link at the bottom of the page

And a new Dell business computer with Intel i5 or i7 processor will be able to respond to Captain Kirk's order for "Warp factor 9" instantly. The speed compared to a 7 year old jobby will be mind blowing

As said above transfer of data from the old computer via the Microsoft Easy Transfer system will be fine. All you need is a transfer cable which will cost under £20

  onthelimit1 20:11 PM 25 Jul 11

'All you need is a transfer cable which will cost under £20'

You can if you want to, but can be done, as I mentioned, using an external HDD (which is a good device to have to keep backups on).

  mansla 07:27 AM 26 Jul 11

Thanks all for the helpful replies. My budget is £1k but I hope to include in that price a good printer with automatic feed scanning and also good envelope printing as my current cheapo is rubbish with envelopes.

I like the idea of an external hard drive to store and backup and they seem quite reasonable these days.

I do not do any gaming so dont want to pay for something that I dont need in ths respect but I do want to vieew family videos and also I play around with jpg images a lot (usually on Powerpoint) for our business advertising mock ups but I may well start looking at some desktop publishing software when I get a PC that can handle it!

Thanks again -keep the recs coming! Mansla

  birdface 06:37 AM 28 Jul 11

If using W7 I am not sure if you can still have Outlook for your e-mail provider.

Maybe I am thinking of Outlook Express but as I do not use either I am not sure.

  961 08:20 AM 28 Jul 11

It's outlook express that you can't use

Outlook is fine

  mansla 09:55 AM 13 Aug 11

OK have had a look at Dell .... there seems to be 2 main choices for me ... an XPS 8300 which has (I think) 1TB SATA, 6GB/s ... compared to a Precision T1600 which has about the same specs but it is a Workstation as opposed to a Desktop ... what on earth does that mean and is it worth the extra couple hundred quid?!?!

To my untrained eye, seems that a workstation is aimed at professionals using chunky software - ie CAD design etc, whereas the XPS desktop seems more aimed at gaming.

I am neither of those! Help - workstation or desktop??

Thanks M

  interzone55 10:10 AM 13 Aug 11

The Dell Precision workstations generally have server type processors and power graphics cards for heavy duty graphics & video work, we use them a lot for CCTV viewing stations.

For most office work you really don't need more than a Core i5 CPU and 4gb RAM, so the XPS 8300 would be a good choice.

The Vostro PCs are good value, but their PSUs are quite light, so I don't think they'll last long.

Take a look at this one - http://configure.euro.dell.com/dellstore/config.aspx?oc=d08x8321&c=uk&l=en&s=bsd&cs=ukbsdt1&model_id=xps-8300

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