Part II of “Breathing more life into an “old” PC”

Last week I mentioned ordering a CPU upgrade for my main home machine, taking it from 1.4GHz up to 2.8GHz. I promised to report back on the experience.   The upgrade was on my doorstep when I arrived home from work last night. Before getting started, I watched the 8 minute video on PowerLeap’s site…

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The death of 3rd party system tools?

A co-worker recently asked me what I thought about the upcoming hardening of the x64 versions of Windows, which makes it harder to write cool programs like Compuware’s SoftIce, or RegMon & FileMon from SysInternals. The gist is that Windows will attempt to block modification of  the IDT/GDT and the system call tables, except by authorized Microsoft…

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Breathing more life into an “old” PC

As part of this weekend’s fun improving the performance of my aging 3-year old machine at home, I found that I could upgrade to modern day CPU performance for not that much $. My main machine at home is a 1.4 GHz Dell Dimension 8100. Apparently these machines were built with pretty good componentry, including…

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Are your IDE drives slower than they used to be?

This weekend during an unexpected burst of energy, I tackled the problem of my IDE drive which seemed to have gotten slower recently. A little detective work lead me to the difference between PIO and DMA mode. (Which I previously hadn’t paid any attention to. Why not? Windows takes care of all this hardware stuff,…

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Mike Stall on “Why can’t I step through my IL?”

Back when I was first learning .NET, I was always wondering why there wasn’t an IL debugger. It wasn’t until I had really seen the guts of .NET executing that I realized that an IL debugger wouldn’t be particularly useful for real world debugging. The IL is just a model. It doesn’t really execute. Sure,…

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