Debranded Presario Desktop Reviewed - BSD

This is a discussion on Debranded Presario Desktop Reviewed - BSD ; Debranded Presario Desktop Reviewed =================================== 1. The box: The box is a debranded Presario desktop, sold with model number TS-XN0102RS, the last part being the model number of the branded desktop backwards. It comes with a Sempron 3400+ processor (1.8GHz), ...

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Thread: Debranded Presario Desktop Reviewed

  1. Debranded Presario Desktop Reviewed

    Debranded Presario Desktop Reviewed
    ===================================

    1. The box:

    The box is a debranded Presario desktop, sold with model number TS-XN0102RS,
    the last part being the model number of the branded desktop backwards. It
    comes with a Sempron 3400+ processor (1.8GHz), 512 M -- athough the onboard
    video seems to eat some of that, 120 G SATA drive, CD-RW/DVD-ROM drive, ps/2
    keyboard and mouse. The bay will hold another SATA drive, a floppy drive,
    and another IDE optical drive. You will need cables for a floppy drive, if
    you chouse to install one, ditto the SATA drive. You will also need a
    four-pin to SATA power cable adapter (just like the one used for the
    installed SATA drive). This box is widely available at about $200 on the
    low side and ridiculous on the high side. The box has 3 PCI slots, one of
    which is occupied by the useless modem and one PCI-E slot. The box is sold
    sans-OS.

    On the box: 4 USB 2.0 ports, two front, two back. Ethernet port (back).
    15-pin video connector. PS/2 keyboard, PS/2 mouse connectors. Small
    headphone jack (front). Mic, audio in, audio out -- all on back. The
    stinking, useless modem card has line in only. Note: no parallel port, no
    serial port, no S-video port for the onboard video. This box lacks a true,
    everything totally off power switch. The box comes with a black keyboard
    and mouse.

    2. FreeBSDability of the Box

    The box has no serial ports and no ISA slot, and of course the installed
    modem is junk. So for dial-up connectivity a PCI contoller modem is
    required. USRobotics USR5610C ($80 and up) was found to work. I believe
    there is a Zoom card that will also work, but it was not investigated or
    tested. (If you do not already know that you cannot cheap out on the modem,
    you probably do not have the FreeBSD skill to adapt this box.) The main
    thing is neither your ISA card nor your external serial modem will work. As
    there are USB2 ports, perhaps usb modems can be made to work, but this was
    not invesigated.

    Surprisingly the onboard video is not total crap. It is nVidia and it works
    with the FreeBSD-native X drivers. The nVidia drivers configure themselves
    (and xorg) in an instant. Looking for something to do, I adjusted Horz Sync
    and Vert Refresh figures from the very conservative ones that were
    configured, but I do not know that this made any difference. The mplayer
    nVidia drivers do not work with cvidix in mplayer so if you want mplayer on
    the console, you are stuck with VESA (although I have not actually proven
    that VESA will work yet). Neither does the NV3 chipset in libvga, so it is
    plain vga or vesa for just about any kind of console graphics. I rate this
    as workstation acceptable, even workstation good. If you are about video,
    you probably have a card that is better in your junk box.

    The onboard sound is crap -- meaning it cannot be identified and I cannot
    make it operational. Drop a card in. Of course that is sort of a waste of
    the nice headphone jack on the front.

    3. Workability of the box

    This box is exceptionally easy to work with, but it is worthwhile to
    download the servicing and upgrading pdf for the branded box before you
    break one of the convenient access features. The CPU fan is exceedingly
    easy to foul if you work with this box on its side, so mind your cables and
    your tools. There is a rear grill that cries out for a large case fan, and
    well, this is an AMD processor, so I would stick one on if you have it.

    4. Overall

    If you are over the age of 9, this will never be your home media center, but
    it is a reasonable workhorse for the price.


    --
    Lars Eighner
    Countdown: 525 days to go.
    What do you do when you're debranded?

  2. Re: Debranded Presario Desktop Reviewed

    In our last episode,
    ,
    the lovely and talented Lars Eighner
    broadcast on comp.unix.bsd.freebsd.misc:

    > Surprisingly the onboard video is not total crap. It is nVidia and it works
    > with the FreeBSD-native X drivers.


    I take this back. The nVidia drivers were "updated" in the last couple of
    days so they no longer work with this box's onboard video.


    --
    Lars Eighner
    Countdown: 525 days to go.
    What do you do when you're debranded?

  3. Re: Debranded Presario Desktop Reviewed

    Lars Eighner wrote:

    > In our last episode,
    > ,
    > the lovely and talented Lars Eighner
    > broadcast on comp.unix.bsd.freebsd.misc:
    >
    >> Surprisingly the onboard video is not total crap. It is nVidia and it
    >> works with the FreeBSD-native X drivers.

    >
    > I take this back. The nVidia drivers were "updated" in the last couple of
    > days so they no longer work with this box's onboard video.
    >
    >


    Maybe you need the nvidia-driver-71xx port for an NV3. I remember I had to
    do something like that with my old PCI TNT2 card. IIRC it was an NV4.
    Nvidia split their "monolithic" driver packages some time back. Legacy
    support is contained in the 71xx port for the older stuff.

    -Jason


  4. Re: Debranded Presario Desktop Reviewed

    In our last episode, , the lovely and talented
    Jason Bourne broadcast on comp.unix.bsd.freebsd.misc:

    > Lars Eighner wrote:


    >> In our last episode,
    >> ,
    >> the lovely and talented Lars Eighner
    >> broadcast on comp.unix.bsd.freebsd.misc:
    >>
    >>> Surprisingly the onboard video is not total crap. It is nVidia and it
    >>> works with the FreeBSD-native X drivers.

    >>
    >> I take this back. The nVidia drivers were "updated" in the last couple of
    >> days so they no longer work with this box's onboard video.
    >>
    >>


    > Maybe you need the nvidia-driver-71xx port for an NV3. I remember I had to
    > do something like that with my old PCI TNT2 card. IIRC it was an NV4.
    > Nvidia split their "monolithic" driver packages some time back. Legacy
    > support is contained in the 71xx port for the older stuff.


    I take it back for taking it back. I should never post without my second
    cup of coffee. I realized that portupgrade -a (which I ran after plaintiff
    pleas from gnomelogalyzer.sh) had upgraded the drivers overnight. And of
    course the uploaded the kernel module. But I hadn't rebooted. So there was
    a driver-kernel mismatch.

    --
    Lars Eighner
    Countdown: 525 days to go.
    What do you do when you're debranded?

  5. Re: Debranded Presario Desktop Reviewed

    Lars Eighner wrote:

    [snip]
    >
    > I take it back for taking it back. I should never post without my second
    > cup of coffee. I realized that portupgrade -a (which I ran after
    > plaintiff
    > pleas from gnomelogalyzer.sh) had upgraded the drivers overnight. And of
    > course the uploaded the kernel module. But I hadn't rebooted. So there
    > was a driver-kernel mismatch.
    >


    It's two cups for me to be conscious too. :-)

    And more often than not, not even then.

    -Jason


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