How do I configure a new PC?

Dear PC Advisor

As a subscriber to your great magazine I have spent hours following you advise on doing things like digital photography, networking wireless connections, installing XP and DVD burning but now I face my biggest challenge yet but cannot seem to see any advise on it in any of your past magazine.

My old AMD Athlon 500MHZ system is creaking so I have taken you advice and plumped for a brand spanking new Mesh system with a super fast AMD 64 3500, 1 GB of PC3200 RAM, 200GB of space and a flat screen big enough even to get the mother-in-law's picture on. I am not telling you this to make you jealous but to ask for your advice.

What do I do first?

You provide lots of advice on what to buy, what not to buy and then how to upgrade it later but what about a spanking new system straight out of the box. Do you have anywhere a check list of what to do first and any tips on installing XP Professional, installing firewalls, virus protection, partitions (good or bad things?), connecting to ADSL, setting up back up routines and then transferring data over wireless connection or DVD back up?

Its a big job and I am not sure where to start and it coming on the 12th Oct. - but I know from past experience that I am bound to get it the wrong way round and then either have to reconfigure, have too small partitions or have a slow machine.

Please can you help?

Many thanks
Mike

P.S. I also wonder if you are testing the new MS OS XP 64 as I have downloaded the free update and wonder whether it is worth setting up a partition to try this out?

  Diemmess 08:07 23 Sep 04

I have taken the liberty of re-pasting SOME of your post.~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~#

"a brand spanking new Mesh system with a super fast AMD 64 3500, 1 GB of PC3200 RAM, 200GB of space and a flat screen.

Its a big job and I am not sure where to start and it coming on the 12th Oct. - but I know from past experience that I am bound to get it the wrong way round and then either have to reconfigure, have too small partitions or have a slow machine.

What do I do first? You provide lots of advice on what to buy, what not to buy and then how to upgrade it later but what about a spanking new system straight out of the box."

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ It really is up to you! Your box and your pleasure to set up as you want based on past experience.

I would chop that 200Gb into several partitions. In principle, one large enough for the OS and major applications to work properly. Then another for fundamental data - letters - financial and so on.

You are keen on digital photography and might have a large partition exclusively for picture video or sound files.

The point I make is for the all important working system to have enough room, but not so huge that it becomes slow to back up and restore.

  Jakey boy 09:41 23 Sep 04

But, I don't see that you will have the problems you are expecting. Just accept the system as is, and take it from there. Slowly mould your system to your own requirements by using the control panel, system settings etc, and you'll eventually have a system configured to your own specs.

I think I will split the hard disk out into the four areas as suggested but presumably I need to go through instaling in the following order:-

1. XP prof
2. XP Prof Service Pack 2
3. ADSL Router
4. Partition Software
5. Split into Partitions and decide whats in them
4. Virus Protection
5. Firewall
6. Wireless Network
7. Office & Other Programmes
8. Transfer Data from old Machine
Find I've lost another weekend in front of the computer

Cheers

  reaths 08:04 24 Sep 04

you dont need partition software XP does that for you i asume the system comes with the O/S installed.you can reshape your partitions as you go along its very easy just take your time

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