Joined: Nov. 2005
||Posted: Mar. 22 2006,05:37
I too want to put together a computer like John's toy. I want mine to be silent and cool running like John's so have ordered the same motherboard. In your case it would make sense to use a faster motherboard and more memory to run Windows or a full Linux running KDE or Gnome.
If you plan to run Windows you will want a CD-ROM too. Your computer is growing, maybe more than your initial vision. The cost of Plexiglass is the least of your concerns. The number one concern is heat generated and how to get rid of it. Running at more than 1 gig will generate enough heat that you will need at least cooling fans which will make noise. How much noise are you willing to tolerate? Then too if you make a small case as John did the computer will get too hot. You will have to make a larger case just to allow for better cooling. He used a motherboard that runs at 500 MHz to keep the heat down. He used a CF card of 512 MB. He could easily have used one of only 256 MB. A one gig card would be the most he would need to do everything he wanted with dsl. When you talk about a 80 GB hard drive you are probably asking too much performance from a very small computer. A mini-ITX motherboard is 17 cm square, about seven inches square. A micro-ATX motherboard is 9.6 inches square and you already know that it has features that will fully support Windows. Everything you want is available micro-ATX at cheap prices.
If you want to build a small computer like John's, and I do, you will have to come around to his way of thinking about computing. When I first thought of a small computer I, like you, wanted to cram as much as I could in it. That was almost a year ago. Slowly I have come around to seeing the wisdom of small computers, small operating systems, low power, little or no noise. I am not down to John's level yet as I want to dual boot my small computer. I like dsl very much but I also like FreeBSD and NetBSD. My plan is to run a 6 GB Microdrive that is the same size and only slightly thicker as a CF card, giving 5 GB to FreeBSD and 1 GB to dsl. Either OS would be fine by itself but I like to play, not looking to be productive. I am retired so this is my way to play.
I hope my rambling letter gives you something to think about. I wish you well.
What do I really know and how do I know it?