XP repair or?

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Old 12-30-13, 11:14 AM
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XP repair or?

I have a Dell XPS 410 with Windows XP........was told the "optical drive" should be replaced. Is it worth it to repair or replace?

Plus, i cannot see or hear any problem with the PC.. what would be an indication of a failing "optical drive"?

thanks for any help
 
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Old 12-30-13, 11:24 AM
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Optical drives are the CD and/or DVD readers. Who told you the drive needed replaced? Do they (I think you have 2) read disks? Do you need to burn disks?

A new drive is a 5 minute job for probably $25 in parts.

Is this some sort of program that scanned your PC?
 
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Old 12-30-13, 11:28 AM
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Who told you and why? Are you having problems with streaming video or games? If not then why get a new computer? If it can handle those it should be able to do more typical less demanding chores. You can buy optical disks cheap on Ebay and their easy to install. Just make sure whether the one you have is PATA or SATA.
 
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Old 12-30-13, 11:30 AM
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optical drive

yes was hardware scan via Dell Tech Concierge service

I wondered if was bad diagnostic.....since I can read from music CDs and download plus from old A drive floppy discs

If i understood right, the repair relatively simple with no data or program loss?
Have several old photo edit programs I use that cannot be replaces

thanks
 
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Old 12-30-13, 11:33 AM
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Never bothered with diagnostics. If I had trouble with it working I replaced. If yours is doing all you want it to no need to replace.

If i understood right, the repair relatively simple with no data or program loss?
Logic is your friend. Optical drives store no data. It is the discs that store your data. The drive is just like a phonograph. Replace it you still have your music because it is on your records.
 
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Old 12-30-13, 02:37 PM
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I look at diagnostic programs to check on my hard drive status or to repair a driver that isn't functioning properly but don't rely on it for optical drives. It just isn't accurate enough for a proper diagnosis. Instead use your eyes and ears if the drive is blinking too much and isn't accessing what is on the disk there may be a problem with the drive or the disk. If you hear grinding noises from the drive then it definitely is time to replace the drive.
 
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Old 12-30-13, 03:38 PM
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I'll make an educated guess (as I just fixed something similar 2 weeks ago.
Your CD / DVD drives have two speeds.
Fast = DMA
and
Slow =PIO

If your computer tries to play a dirty or smudged CD, the CD /DVD drive will say it's getting errors.
Also, the drive can be get stuck in slow PIO mode.
Solution is simple, go through device manager, delete the driver, reboot.
(you can google for directions)

If the drive is actually failing, you can get a perfectly good CD/DVD drive from your local thrift shop for around $5.

Replacing a drive generally can be done by removing 6 screws, (2 for the case, 4 for the drive)
unplugging 3 plugs from the old drive, (power, data, digital audio)
replugging 3 plugs in the replacement drive
then replacing the 6 screws.

I literally think I've done it in under 2 minutes.
 
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Old 12-30-13, 04:52 PM
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...was hardware scan via Dell Tech Concierge service...
Did the scan give you a descriptive error message? Seems like it should have but I don't know much about the Dell Tech Concierge service other than it costs over $200 year - I think.lol
 
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Old 12-31-13, 06:44 AM
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There's thought that XP is going to get corrupted quickly when Microsoft ends support in April. May not happen but rather than replace anything on this machine I would start budgeting for a new PC.

I've picked up a few decent used machines over the years from IBM's website and never paid more than $200.
 
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Old 12-31-13, 08:17 AM
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There's thought that XP is going to get corrupted quickly when Microsoft ends support in April. May not happen but rather than replace anything on this machine I would start budgeting for a new PC.
Disagree if the computer is working fine. Just install a better OS that is fee and not subject to malware or viruses. There are several Linux distributions that will run well on your X-86* computer cost nothing and may even be easier to use then Windows. They also work well with older hardware so no compatibility layer BS like with newer Windows OSes. True you will need new software but all the software is free and probably easier to install then Windows software on some of the Linux distributions. You can even try a LiveCD of a distro on your computer without installing.

*You have called it an XP computer but it really isn't. XP is software. The computer is hardware, specifically a x-86 PC.
 
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Old 12-31-13, 06:23 PM
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I agree with mitch17 and Posternine I like Linux myself but there are some programs such as tax programs that just will not work with Linux. So if you want a computer that can do everything but your taxes go with Linux. It certainly is a way to bring an old computer back to life again. On the other hand if you need a tax program on your computer and want to do some of the things Linux can't do you really need a new computer fairly soon as Windows XP sunsets soon.
 
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Old 12-31-13, 07:42 PM
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I used a free online tax program on Linux for many years. It worked fine.
 
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Old 12-31-13, 11:47 PM
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What brand of tax program was that Posternine? Was it web based or not web based? Web based I could see working with Linux but not any programs that I am aware of myself. I use Turbotax myself and haven't heard of it being compatible with Linux. A web version probably but not the installed program. In any event it makes me curious and wanting to know with the way Microsoft seems to dump their oses every few years.
 
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Old 01-01-14, 06:36 AM
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Sorry I was unclear. By online I meant web based. It was Taxact.
it makes me curious and wanting to know with the way Microsoft seems to dump their oses every few years
If you choose they maintain your previous year data so you can import from the previous year.
 
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Old 01-01-14, 02:53 PM
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Maybe it's my cynical streak showing but I automatically question someone's motives and/or credibility when they choose to use a highfalutin phrase like "optical drive" instead of just calling it your "DVD player." I suspect he was trying to befuddle you with BS, hoping you'd be overwhelmed and elect to pay Dell's brand name markup for a replacement.


I'm in no hurry to dump my XP PCs. I do not think it is realistic to believe that Windoze XP is going to vanish from the planet in four months time. Or that the 400 million PC users still running XP are going to throw the hardware away (or switch to *NIX) because they believe they straightway are going to be infected.

Think on that number for a minute. Four hundred million potential customers. That's 1/3rd more than the entire population of the USA (illegal aliens included). That represents a HUGE potential market. M$ has made abandoning them part of their business strategy, but that does not mean the rest of the world will. Peripheral manufacturers (printers, video cards, etc) already have announced they will continue to include XP-compatible drivers with their new products, so they aren't forsaking that market segment.


I have faith in the capitalist system. I can't believe there isn't someone on the planet who will see the flashing neon dollar signs and act on it.

For one thing, environmental group need to get all up in M$'s grillwork, and let them know it is simply unacceptable for them to arbitrarily obsolete 400 million PCs, and destine all those precious metals and toxic chemicals to the land fill. I don't often back the tree-hugging crowd, but this would be one exception.


That 400 million figure is only the "legitimate" numbers. The People's Republic of (Communist Red) China, which refuses to enforce western copyright laws, runs on bootlegged WinXP. Hundreds of millions of copies (India is much the same, but in far smaller numbers). I do not find it beyond the realm of possibility that they would create a formal government program to keep their bootlegged OSs patched. And it's no skin off their noses if those patches leak out to the west. For that matter, they might even market them. Cheap.

So the Commies could come to the rescue of the capitalists.

Regardless, M$ WILL NOT sit still and watch placidly while someone else makes big bucks off one of their old products. When that happens, I fully expect to see a Coca-Cola/New Coke/Coke Classic scenario. Maybe they'll call it "Windows Classic," but it will look a whole lot like WinXP, and it will run just fine on all those old X86 platforms.
 
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Old 01-01-14, 03:23 PM
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Regardless, M$ WILL NOT sit still and watch placidly while someone else makes big bucks off one of their old products. When that happens, I fully expect to see a Coca-Cola/New Coke/Coke Classic scenario. Maybe they'll call it "Windows Classic," but it will look a whole lot like WinXP, and it will run just fine on all those old X86 platforms.
Or maybe it will be React OS if they ever get it out of alpha.
 
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Old 01-01-14, 03:26 PM
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Fred I still have Windows XP computers too but while we might not like what Microsoft does with their product we really don't have much choice either. For instance I liked Windows 98 but you don't see applications being made for it anymore because Microsoft has control over what is or isn't written for their operating systems through their licensing. You can buy applications that are not licensed to be written for Windows but some of them may or may not cause problems. Many are great like GimpShop for instance so I for one don't pay attention to what Microsoft says.

The thing is though anti-virus vendors do like AVG for instance they abandoned Windows 98 years ago and shortly after Microsoft ended its support. For anyone who runs Windows you really need some kind of anti-virus or your computer is vulnerable to attack. Other software you can get by without ever updating it and it will continue to work great for years. So if you never use it again on the internet then you never will have any problems.
 
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