Things to do with a spare PC - boards.ie
Boards.ie uses cookies. By continuing to browse this site you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Click here to find out more x
Post Reply  
 
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
10-05-2011, 09:27   #1
D'Agger
Moderator
 
D'Agger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Indecisive Ave.
Posts: 10,684
Things to do with a spare PC

I recently purchased a laptop as I need to have computing on the go with work, travel etc.

I still have my Inspiron 545 Desktop and was wondering if anybody had any interesting ideas as to what I could use it for myself?

My initial thought was to install the tower behind my TV, connect it to both the TV & router then use the wireless keyboard and mouse to allow me to browse, stream, watch IT tutorial videos on my TV. Also - anything I download on the laptop could simply be fired onto the PC through a home network and watched on TV - no need for cables etc.

Another idea was to use it to get to know the feel of Linux, Perl, Unix and other languages I want to know how to use in the future.

Any suggestions or bright ideas??
D'Agger is offline  
Advertisement
10-05-2011, 09:32   #2
Spear
Moderator
 
Spear's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Dublin,Ireland
Posts: 13,850
Do some scientific work?

http://www.boards.ie/vbulletin/forumdisplay.php?f=851
Spear is offline  
(2) thanks from:
10-05-2011, 10:05   #3
fionny
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Cork
Posts: 1,987
Use it as a proper media pc / server with software like Boxee or something similar. Get a little handheld keyboard like the Logitech DiNovo mini.

You could also host a small Minecraft server for you and your friends?

Or you could use it as a footstool
fionny is offline  
Thanks from:
10-05-2011, 10:09   #4
D'Agger
Moderator
 
D'Agger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Indecisive Ave.
Posts: 10,684
Quote:
Originally Posted by fionny View Post
Use it as a proper media pc / server with software like Boxee or something similar. Get a little handheld keyboard like the Logitech DiNovo mini.
Cheers - never heard of Boxee before tbh but this is why I want the thread - get more information on software that I could use to set it up as best as possible.

It's a strong machine - has a quad core 2.5ghz processor, 4gb RAM and 500GB HDD.

I'm working in deskside support atm and hoping to move into Networking so want to use this side project as a way to learn more and teach myself.
D'Agger is offline  
10-05-2011, 10:14   #5
fionny
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Cork
Posts: 1,987
Well you could kill 2 birds with one stone, install Linux and then put Boxee on that as a double whammy so you can learn the new OS and have a media pc.

Boxee is my fav media pc software: http://www.boxee.tv/make

EDIT and thats a damn nice pc to have set aside for mere tinkering! Lucky git
fionny is offline  
Advertisement
10-05-2011, 10:28   #6
D'Agger
Moderator
 
D'Agger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Indecisive Ave.
Posts: 10,684
Quote:
Originally Posted by fionny View Post
Well you could kill 2 birds with one stone, install Linux and then put Boxee on that as a double whammy so you can learn the new OS and have a media pc.

Boxee is my fav media pc software: http://www.boxee.tv/make

EDIT and thats a damn nice pc to have set aside for mere tinkering! Lucky git
I know that's why I'd like to put it to good use - it's too good a PC to waste!!

I was thinking of installing Linux alright....in addition to Windows 7 which is already on it.

With regard to Boxee - are there many free channels on it/ what are the main free features of it? the website didn't give much info - I checked it as soon as you mentioned it earlier!

I was planning on just using a web browser for ch131.com & atdhe.net/myp2p.eu for streaming sports etc.
D'Agger is offline  
10-05-2011, 10:29   #7
the_syco
Syco Kitteh
 
the_syco's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Leixlip
Posts: 26,854
Quote:
Originally Posted by PaulieC View Post
I still have my Inspiron 545 Desktop and was wondering if anybody had any interesting ideas as to what I could use it for myself?

the_syco is offline  
(2) thanks from:
10-05-2011, 10:32   #8
fionny
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Cork
Posts: 1,987
Well boxee is more for playing video files you already have, it does work with things like netflix and stuff but I dont think they are available here yet.

Dual boot with Linux is good, also if you want a fun side project you could try make a hackintosh out of it, its tricky but fun that way you could also learn the fruit based OS
fionny is offline  
10-05-2011, 10:36   #9
D'Agger
Moderator
 
D'Agger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Indecisive Ave.
Posts: 10,684
Quote:
Originally Posted by fionny View Post
Well boxee is more for playing video files you already have, it does work with things like netflix and stuff but I dont think they are available here yet.

Dual boot with Linux is good, also if you want a fun side project you could try make a hackintosh out of it, its tricky but fun that way you could also learn the fruit based OS
Ah so it basically gives a UI to allow you play your files correct?

I have a 1tb iomega screenplay director which I could always use at home - use it mainly at work atm for myself and the people I work with to look at stuff during lunch. Could always just bring that home and use that instead of Boxee, then use the PC for simple browsing and watching stuff online.

Or just add the media player to the PC and use it for additional storage - it takes a bit too long to load the UI on it imo
D'Agger is offline  
Advertisement
10-05-2011, 10:41   #10
fionny
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Cork
Posts: 1,987
Ya its just a program that pretties up the interface and fetches data etc... ie if you have tv programs on your disk it will go off and find the info and covers and ratings etc... and pull it all in for you.

Also you can just close it and use the PC as normal.
fionny is offline  
10-05-2011, 11:46   #11
D'Agger
Moderator
 
D'Agger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Indecisive Ave.
Posts: 10,684
Quote:
Originally Posted by fionny View Post
Ya its just a program that pretties up the interface and fetches data etc... ie if you have tv programs on your disk it will go off and find the info and covers and ratings etc... and pull it all in for you.

Also you can just close it and use the PC as normal.
Sounds good...will definitely give it a go, I'll try out alot of different OS, Software etc on it just looking for more and more tips on how to use it

Cheers for all the help though!

Was looking at this article for ideas also....might try out some of the NAS stuff on it
D'Agger is offline  
10-05-2011, 11:51   #12
fionny
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Cork
Posts: 1,987
Aye good shout, also playing around with virtualisation would be a good shout for your IT stuff!
fionny is offline  
10-05-2011, 11:52   #13
study68
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 26
use as a linux pc. use this PC to take a backup your new laptop. explore linux and other software & games..
study68 is offline  
10-05-2011, 12:00   #14
D'Agger
Moderator
 
D'Agger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Indecisive Ave.
Posts: 10,684
Quote:
Originally Posted by study68 View Post
use as a linux pc. use this PC to take a backup your new laptop. explore linux and other software & games..
That's part of the plan anyway - even in college I've never had to use Linux and if I want to move into Networking/system administration then I'm going to need to know it.

Any tips on software worth exploring??
D'Agger is offline  
12-05-2011, 12:07   #15
D'Agger
Moderator
 
D'Agger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Indecisive Ave.
Posts: 10,684
Just to give this a bit of a bump:

Installed Boxee Fionny cheers for the recommendation....I especially like that you can start playing one song then start browsing for more music etc.

With regards to creating playlists I haven't fully looked into it but I always have itunes to fall back on...

The streaming channels available are brilliant for me as they're nearly all tech related and seeing as I'm just out of college I'm looking to learn constantly - the TED channel in particular is brilliant.

With regards to other uses - I'm going to install VMware on the PC - then install a number of different OS that I want to try out and get a feel for like Ubuntu.

If there's any other software out there worth looking at just to test out etc. then feel free to let me know

And again, cheers for the help lads
D'Agger is offline  
Post Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Remove Text Formatting
Bold
Italic
Underline

Insert Image
Wrap [QUOTE] tags around selected text
 
Decrease Size
Increase Size
Please sign up or log in to join the discussion

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search



Share Tweet