Repurpose old PC

Have an old PC knocking about.

It's a HP 9373, with a Intel Q9300 CPU running at 2.5GHz, 4GB RAM, 32 Bit, also has a GTS250 GPU - Running Vista, with a couple of 250GB HDD.


Not sure I can really upgrade much, I get the feeling 4GB of DDR2 is the max RAM it can take, and that GPU is fine for what I want to use it for, which is...

...a music workstation (DAW) only, nothing else - doesn't need to be super speedy, just has to be cheap! I plan to only spend money on a new OS & external SSD.

With those specs, I need to obviously update the OS as I do need the security of a modern version and certain utilities won't work on anything older than W7 - What's the best plan of action - factory reset, reformat drives and install W10? Will that machine run W10 (can't see that it won't on Google) OK?

Basic searches seem to think that it would be fine.

Many thanks in advance clever computer people.
 
what about one of the flavours of Linux, if your software will run on that?
 
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Have an old PC knocking about.

It's a HP 9373, with a Intel Q9300 CPU running at 2.5GHz, 4GB RAM, 32 Bit, also has a GTS250 GPU - Running Vista, with a couple of 250GB HDD.


Not sure I can really upgrade much, I get the feeling 4GB of DDR2 is the max RAM it can take, and that GPU is fine for what I want to use it for, which is...

...a music workstation (DAW) only, nothing else - doesn't need to be super speedy, just has to be cheap! I plan to only spend money on a new OS & external SSD.

With those specs, I need to obviously update the OS as I do need the security of a modern version and certain utilities won't work on anything older than W7 - What's the best plan of action - factory reset, reformat drives and install W10? Will that machine run W10 (can't see that it won't on Google) OK?

Basic searches seem to think that it would be fine.

Many thanks in advance clever computer people.

Reformat, install Win 10. It'll run fine. My music workstation (actually a laptop) is lower specced than your machine, and is spot on for my music collection. I have Windows 11 on it.
 
what about one of the flavours of Linux, if your software will run on that?
That could work, but it would require this old brain to start thinking in new ways - that sort of talk used to get you burnt at the stake - I'd have to have a look at the main utilities I'd use and if they'd work too.

Not discounting it, but probably a bit of hassle for a dumbass like me.
 
I think it'd probably take another 4gRam stick. Might be worthwhile disabling background Windaz apps you won't need and try to give the CPU a wee ( marginal) break. Every little helps.
Trouble is, memory sticks etc have shot up in price recently with opportunists maxing the global "shortages"
Might just not be worth your while for your specific needs.
 
I think it'd probably take another 4gRam stick. Might be worthwhile disabling background Windaz apps you won't need and try to give the CPU a wee ( marginal) break. Every little helps.
Trouble is, memory sticks etc have shot up in price recently with opportunists maxing the global "shortages"
Might just not be worth your while for your specific needs.
32 bit operating systems can only address 4GB of RAM, so save on the extra RAM stick, unless OP can go to a 64 bit OS.
 
Current system is 32bit, so I'd probably stick with that.
 

AlienFTM

MIA
Book Reviewer
Set it up as a Mumble server (I believe the Mumble code is available for a number of platforms. Friendless ours on a Raspberry Pi).

Damon sight less effort than all the bloat that comes with Discord.

You need to open a few ports on your network. I am not a network engineer.
 
Reformat, install Win 10. It'll run fine. My music workstation (actually a laptop) is lower specced than your machine, and is spot on for my music collection. I have Windows 11 on it.
I'm going to order a USB Win10 from Amazon - it currently has 2x HDD, obviously the one with just 'stuff' on it can be re-formatted easily enough, can I simply reformat/wipe the other with the OS on it so it's completely clean and then boot from the USB to start a fresh, then do the drivers etc...

Or is it best to just do a Factory Reset and then let Win10 deal with deleting the old OS and installing the new?
 
I'm going to order a USB Win10 from Amazon - it currently has 2x HDD, obviously the one with just 'stuff' on it can be re-formatted easily enough, can I simply reformat/wipe the other with the OS on it so it's completely clean and then boot from the USB to start a fresh, then do the drivers etc...

Or is it best to just do a Factory Reset and then let Win10 deal with deleting the old OS and installing the new?

Either or. On balance, I'd recommend a clean install. It's certainly faster.
 
Am I right in thinking that as I'll be doing a full memory wipe/disk reformat then booting and installing clean Win 10 from an USB, I can install the 64bit OS?

(I assume formatting the drive with all the OS and HP embedded crap won't screw it up? Would it be best to do a factory reset instead?)

Sorry for basically asking the same question as before - still unsure of the best way to proceed.
 

jinxy

LE
Your CPU can handle 64bit. As for doing a re-set, that's a personal thing, you will still lose all your none backed up data and files.

My preference has always been to do a full back-up to a removable disk, then do a full install, you do not need to create a partition and format, as you would have done with win 95 etc. The installer will do all that for you.

Having installed a fresh OS, just restore your files and data from the removable back that you created.

With the ability to add lots more ram and having a SSD hard drive will make your PC unrecognizable,

This laptop i'm using is an old Dell Latitude. I swapped out the original HDD and put in an SSD. I imaged the original drive and transferred it to the new drive. I now have 12 gig of ram, up from 4.
 

endure

GCM
I think it'd probably take another 4gRam stick. Might be worthwhile disabling background Windaz apps you won't need and try to give the CPU a wee ( marginal) break. Every little helps.
Trouble is, memory sticks etc have shot up in price recently with opportunists maxing the global "shortages"
Might just not be worth your while for your specific needs.
The problem with old machines is that the RAM for them is often no longer made and becomes rarer and more expensive.
 

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