Compaq iPaq as thin client - Hardware

This is a discussion on Compaq iPaq as thin client - Hardware ; Hi, I'm considering one of these as a thin client with a bit of local processing power for the odd radio stream etc: http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll? ViewItem&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT&item=370090683086 Most of the stuff I do that takes any power is virtualised using VMWare on ...

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Thread: Compaq iPaq as thin client

  1. Compaq iPaq as thin client

    Hi,

    I'm considering one of these as a thin client with a bit of local
    processing power for the odd radio stream etc:

    http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?
    ViewItem&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT&item=370090683086

    Most of the stuff I do that takes any power is virtualised using VMWare
    on an old but reliable ThinkCenter, but it's relatively noisy and I want
    to park it away in the loft where it can rumble in peace.

    I want to be able to drive a 22" Dell @ 1680x1050 - no fancy 3d effects,
    just decent 2D rendering.

    Does any one have opinions in the suitability of the iPaq, in terms of
    suitability for this task, and as far as the silence (or otherwise) of
    the unit goes?

    Thanks

    Sean

  2. Re: Compaq iPaq as thin client

    On Tue, 30 Sep 2008 04:34:22 -0500, seani wrote:

    > Hi,
    >
    > I'm considering one of these as a thin client with a bit of local
    > processing power for the odd radio stream etc:
    >
    > http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?
    > ViewItem&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT&item=370090683086
    >
    > Most of the stuff I do that takes any power is virtualised using VMWare
    > on an old but reliable ThinkCenter, but it's relatively noisy and I want
    > to park it away in the loft where it can rumble in peace.
    >
    > I want to be able to drive a 22" Dell @ 1680x1050 - no fancy 3d effects,
    > just decent 2D rendering.
    >

    Graphics may be built in on this system, but I am not sure. If true, then
    simple graphics cards may have difficulty with this high resolution mode.
    >
    > Does any one have opinions in the suitability of the iPaq, in terms of
    > suitability for this task, and as far as the silence (or otherwise) of
    > the unit goes?
    >
    > Thanks
    >
    > Sean
    >

    Note: comment inline.

    I have a Dell P3 @ 933MHz with 512MB RAM (built circa 2001) which appears
    to be similar to the system you pointed to. I've never used an IPaq, but
    systems with that level of horsepower are generally sufficient for
    running Firefox, Open office, etc. They aren't a speed demons, but they
    still work. Examples:

    remote X applications can be displayed.
    VMWare's various consoles can be displayed, etc.

    I am not sure it's worth close to $100, though. In that price range, I
    would rather have a VIA C7 based system. The only problem with the VIA C7
    is the noise factor; the small fans are problematic.

    Here are some shortfalls of the P3 based systems vs. newer hardware (IMO):

    1. Memory speed is a bottleneck.
    2. Upgrading memory a relative expensive proposition. PC133 memory is
    becoming hard to find, except for Ebay.
    3. AFAIK, SATA is not on board. New disks are quickly migrating to SATA.
    Probably, ATA disks will become hard to find, except for Ebay, too.
    4. USB 2.0 may not be on board. I question the spec. on the advert.
    5. Booting from USB may not be possible.

    And there are some negatives associated with the specific system you
    are looking (IMO).

    1. Are there any free PCI slots?
    2. Is it really USB 2.0?
    3. Looks difficult (tending to impossible) to upgrade due to its small
    case.

    But if you think it looks like a good bargain and you'd be happy with it
    as is, then don't let me discourage you. Like I said, I have one similar
    system and other similar systems which are serving in some capacity. By no
    means are all machines from this generation retired.

    --
    Douglas Mayne

  3. Re: Compaq iPaq as thin client

    On Tue, 30 Sep 2008 09:50:19 -0600, Douglas Mayne wrote:

    > On Tue, 30 Sep 2008 04:34:22 -0500, seani wrote:
    >
    >> Hi,
    >>
    >> I'm considering one of these as a thin client with a bit of local
    >> processing power for the odd radio stream etc:
    >>
    >> http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?
    >> ViewItem&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT&item=370090683086
    >>
    >> Most of the stuff I do that takes any power is virtualised using VMWare
    >> on an old but reliable ThinkCenter, but it's relatively noisy and I
    >> want to park it away in the loft where it can rumble in peace.
    >>
    >> I want to be able to drive a 22" Dell @ 1680x1050 - no fancy 3d
    >> effects, just decent 2D rendering.
    >>

    > Graphics may be built in on this system, but I am not sure. If true,
    > then simple graphics cards may have difficulty with this high resolution
    > mode.
    >>
    >> Does any one have opinions in the suitability of the iPaq, in terms of
    >> suitability for this task, and as far as the silence (or otherwise) of
    >> the unit goes?
    >>
    >> Thanks
    >>
    >> Sean
    >>

    > Note: comment inline.
    >
    > I have a Dell P3 @ 933MHz with 512MB RAM (built circa 2001) which
    > appears to be similar to the system you pointed to. I've never used an
    > IPaq, but systems with that level of horsepower are generally sufficient
    > for running Firefox, Open office, etc. They aren't a speed demons, but
    > they still work. Examples:
    >
    > remote X applications can be displayed. VMWare's various consoles

    can
    > be displayed, etc.
    >
    > I am not sure it's worth close to $100, though. In that price range, I
    > would rather have a VIA C7 based system. The only problem with the VIA
    > C7 is the noise factor; the small fans are problematic.
    >
    > Here are some shortfalls of the P3 based systems vs. newer hardware
    > (IMO):
    >
    > 1. Memory speed is a bottleneck.
    > 2. Upgrading memory a relative expensive proposition. PC133

    memory is
    > becoming hard to find, except for Ebay. 3. AFAIK, SATA is not on

    board.
    > New disks are quickly migrating to SATA. Probably, ATA disks will
    > become hard to find, except for Ebay, too. 4. USB 2.0 may not be

    on
    > board. I question the spec. on the advert. 5. Booting from USB

    may not
    > be possible.
    >
    > And there are some negatives associated with the specific system you are
    > looking (IMO).
    >
    > 1. Are there any free PCI slots?
    > 2. Is it really USB 2.0?
    > 3. Looks difficult (tending to impossible) to upgrade due to its

    small
    > case.
    >
    > But if you think it looks like a good bargain and you'd be happy with it
    > as is, then don't let me discourage you. Like I said, I have one similar
    > system and other similar systems which are serving in some capacity. By
    > no means are all machines from this generation retired.


    Thanks for your response Douglas. I couldn't find a definitive answer on
    Google concerning the supported resolution, and that along with the noise
    factor are really the only areas I'm much concerned with. I leave games
    to my console and the work related stuff I do is fairly pedestrian from a
    a graphical standpoint; I don't need much more than a screen full of
    source code to look at.

    The size of the thing isn't really an issue, but fan noise certainly is -
    I'd happily use a standard mini / full size tower if it was silent.

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