Well, Smudge finally got fed up, and determined a whole new main work computer was in order.

Not that there weren’t good reasons for this. The current incarnation of Desert Rose was put together from parts looted from a system given to us by a friend who had about a dozen of them sitting around after a boarder skipped out, leaving an impressive amount of computer equipment behind. The resulting system was pretty good, but not quite optimized, and maybe two years old at the time I put it together. Worse, the main hard drive was acting up, and causing system lock ups/BSOD during boot.

While shopping for a suitably impressive replacement HD we noted some impressive looking cases (with 500[!]W power supplies) and motherboards at MicroCenter for really nice prices. So we picked up a hard drive and IO card to prepare for the future with SATA, and pondered.

Having hooked us, BackBreaker’s credit was suitably reeled in shopping for processor, RAM, and Video card on Saturday (returning the unopened IO card). I took the credit-gotten gains and started assembly. The first sticking point: power. The motherboard came with four SATA data cables for all the on-board ports. The shiny new SATA hard drive came with one. No one thought to provide a converter cable for traditional power cables to SATA power connector. Ironically, I almost bought one initially, but realized the IO card came with one, and hadn’t thought about it afterward. Maxtor talks about some drives having a legacy power connector, but not this one. Chatting on WoW, Lance came to the rescue, and we dashed over to his place for the missing part.

Sunday morn, I finished off the new system by looting Desert Rose of required parts. Initial power-up and install of Win2000 went smoothly. This is something I’m not as used to as I’d like. When I’m dealing with collections of cast-off parts, I generally run into something that doesn’t want to behave. When everything is something I/we bought, it typically behaves. I haven’t had the money to truly build my own system since about ’99….

So after christening the new system Micca, Sunday was mostly dedicated to getting the system up and transferring files (via network) from Desert Rose. Initial WoW testing is very impressive. We’ll have to run it through the pit o’ lag at peak time (Friday evening) and see how it holds up. Oh, I also ended up going out for a couple of power connector Y-splitters. The power supply may have good wattage, but (other than the extra motherboard connectors used these days) fewer connectors than any other power supply I’ve seen, and I used up everything during the initial build. Considering it’s slated to get an auxiliary HD and an internal Zip drive….

Essential Stats:
Athlon 64 XP2 4400+ (Toledo core)
2GB RAM (they wouldn’t sell us 1! waaah!!)
GeForce 6600 (256 MB)
Gigabit Ethernet (if only there was anything else in the place to talk to at that speed…)
Audigy 2 ZS (taken from Desert Rose)

So today is my first day away from the new machine, and probably the day where Smudge tries using Hash (the real point of the system) on it. I hope he’ll play nice while I’m gone….

Once Micca settles in, and we finish finding and transferring odd bits of data off of Desert Rose, it is slated to be the new Sunshine, our Win98 legacy machine for the scanner.

Last night, I discovered a problem. The new Sunshine (not trapped in an <explicative deleted> funky HP case) will get the old Live Drive audio bay. The SoundBlaster Live! card that goes with it is missing. I have a sinking feeling that, against all intentions, it got thrown out (by me) in The Move.

Utena (my system) currently has what my spreadsheet says is a Live! Value. I’m going to see if that still has the correct connectors for a Live Drive. If so, Sunshine gets it (it’s MY FAULT, so I pay). If not, I either buy a modern equivalent(with internal front bay), or find an old Live! (non-Value) card… somewhere.