New laptop

How do I.... ?
User avatar
Bus Driver
10+ Years
10+ Years
Posts: 2917
Joined: Sat Feb 11, 2006 5:26 pm
Location: NC

New laptop

Postby Bus Driver » Tue Feb 03, 2015 3:40 pm

Wife wants a laptop, with WORD. She wants to be able to carry it with her for a part time job she has-- they have wireless access there.
We have only a desktop unit with Windows 7, DSL plugged into the wall jack which I installed, no wireless here at home. My previous computers were 98 and XP.
I use the computer quite a lot but only for limited number of things.
I use the free Open Office which mimics WORD but is not completely compatible in every way-- but I manage a workaround when necessary. She wants WORD. As you already surmised, we are just old as dirt and need things simple.
Looks like we need the laptop and wireless here at home. Any modems will be on my nickel.
She will be doing very limited surfing, no games or YouTube. Will mostly create documents and keep records on the laptop.
So any specific recommendations?
Luck favors those who are prepared

User avatar
Bill Hudson
Team Cub
Team Cub
Posts: 9243
Joined: Wed Jul 26, 2006 10:50 am
Zip Code: 44057
Tractors Owned: 57 F-Cub - Dad & Mom's Cub
77 F-Cub - Red Long Stripe
Circle of Safety: Y
Location: OH, Madison

Re: New laptop

Postby Bill Hudson » Tue Feb 03, 2015 4:39 pm

Bus Driver wrote:... So any specific recommendations?


"Yes Dear," is probably a good place to start. :) :) I'll wait for others, with more computer knowledge, to answer the technical stuff.

Bill
"The probability of life originating from accident is comparable to the probability of the unabridged dictionary resulting from an explosion in a printing shop." Edwin Conklin, biologist

Image
Member of Ohio Chapter #6

User avatar
Don McCombs
Team Cub Mentor
Team Cub Mentor
Posts: 16267
Joined: Mon Feb 03, 2003 6:45 am
Zip Code: 21550
Tractors Owned: "1950 Something" Farmall Cub
1957 Farmall Cub w/FH
1977 International Cub w/FH
1978 International Cub
1948 Farmall Super A
Circle of Safety: Y
Location: MD, Deep Creek Lake

Re: New laptop

Postby Don McCombs » Tue Feb 03, 2015 4:47 pm

I have been using Dell computers for quite some time. Both desktops and laptops. I am happy with them and have had good experiences with them. I have had several hard drives fail over the years, but I think that is likely to happen with any brand, as they all pretty much use the same two or three manufacturers of drives. If you already are using DSL, you already have a modem. What you will need for networking, is a router or a gateway. A gateway is a modem and router combined. My DSL is with Verizon and they supplied the gateway for free. Since you and your wife will be doing only word processing and a little internet surfing, you don't need one of their high-end packages. All computers these days come with a network card built-in. I would think you could get what you need for less than $700.
Don McCombs
MD, Deep Creek Lake

Image
Proud Member of Maryland Chapter 39
Circle of Safety

User avatar
Bezirk
10+ Years
10+ Years
Posts: 2010
Joined: Fri Mar 27, 2009 10:07 pm
Zip Code: 22843
Tractors Owned: Farmall Cub 1949, Oliver OC3 crawler 1951, Ford 8 N 1948, Oliver 77 Row Crop 1953, JohnDeere, La, 1941, John Deere 4115/w loader, 2004, John Deere stationary power unit LUC, Farmall M, 1946, Oliver 77 Row crop w/ loader
Circle of Safety: Y

Re: New laptop

Postby Bezirk » Tue Feb 03, 2015 8:51 pm

I also have used Dell, current laptop is Dell . Probably not much difference in quality of major brands. Reading reviews online is a good way to start your research. Hope this helps.

Berlin
I started out with nothing and now I only have half of that left !

User avatar
Mr E
Cub Pro
Cub Pro
Posts: 5762
Joined: Mon Jul 30, 2007 11:48 am
Zip Code: 32460
eBay ID: noles1432460
Circle of Safety: Y
Location: FL, Sneads

Re: New laptop

Postby Mr E » Tue Feb 03, 2015 9:43 pm

Just bought the wife a nice HP laptop at Wally-world for $499. No problems so far. Except I'm not familiar with Windows 8.1. :lol:

We used Dell and HP at work. Both are good machines. I personally lean toward the HP unless you buy the very low end machine.

** Edit ** please note this laptop did NOT come with WORD. THE MS Office suite would be extra.
In the middle of every difficulty lies opportunity. - Albert Einstein

Image. Circle of Safety

Roy Edenfield
Deep South CubFest #10
February 14 & 15, 2020

User avatar
Ken (48 Cub)
10+ Years
10+ Years
Posts: 971
Joined: Mon Feb 03, 2003 11:10 am
Zip Code: 40023
Tractors Owned: 1948 FCub
Circle of Safety: Y
Location: KY, Fisherville

Re: New laptop

Postby Ken (48 Cub) » Wed Feb 04, 2015 9:32 am

No matter which laptop you choose, MS Office 2013 should come preinstalled but NOT incensed. That will run another $100 or so for the Home and Student version which will include Word.

We sell Lenovo brand here at work and I like them but there won't be much difference between all of them. I would recommend a brand that preloads a factory image on the hard drive for easy system restores.
Ken, Annie the '48 Cub & Marie the '57 Loboy.

I think we gotter if'n she don't kick, Andy Griffith.

User avatar
Bus Driver
10+ Years
10+ Years
Posts: 2917
Joined: Sat Feb 11, 2006 5:26 pm
Location: NC

Re: New laptop

Postby Bus Driver » Wed Feb 04, 2015 2:26 pm

Some of the posts are understood.
My ISP furnishes nothing, not one of the biggies in the game. And my choices here for ISP are quite limited. My present modem, purchased from them at list price (which is a premium price) is Zhone 1511-A1-NA. I know that I could buy from the ISP all that I need and suspect that if I knew the brand and model of the items I need, they could be bought for less from other sources ( love a discount ).
The ISP says that they plan to have fiber here late in 2015-- we'll see. Know nothing about how much will be the monthly cost for that nor the hardware involved.
I do all my own electrical work. So can someone post specific brand and model for all the hardware I need to go to wireless right now? A shopping list is what I need.

And comments about what fiber would involve in case I decide to hold off for a while. Probably will not delay as the cook may go on strike. The IRS did not originate the concept of withholding.

Thanks.
Luck favors those who are prepared

indy61
10+ Years
10+ Years
Posts: 1292
Joined: Fri Jan 25, 2008 9:02 am
Zip Code: 00000
Circle of Safety: Y

Re: New laptop

Postby indy61 » Wed Feb 04, 2015 3:30 pm

Keep your dsl modem and add a wireless router. I bought a cheap refurbished model and it seems to work great. It includes everything you need to hook it up.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00AAU ... UTF8&psc=1

Jim Becker
Team Cub
Team Cub
Posts: 16374
Joined: Sun Feb 02, 2003 2:59 pm
Zip Code: 55319
Circle of Safety: Y
Location: MN

Re: New laptop

Postby Jim Becker » Wed Feb 04, 2015 8:39 pm

Do you really need wireless at home? My laptop has wireless and also has a place to plug in a LAN. Most did at one time, maybe they still do. If you have room to plug another line into your DSL modem, plug it at home and use wireless away from home.

User avatar
Bus Driver
10+ Years
10+ Years
Posts: 2917
Joined: Sat Feb 11, 2006 5:26 pm
Location: NC

Re: New laptop

Postby Bus Driver » Wed Feb 04, 2015 9:39 pm

This is getting closer for me. My Dell desktop computer is on the second floor and the wife will use hers on the first floor of the house. But I can put a jack there. My phone lines come in the basement and my modem is right under the computer desk. So should I get second modem for her or try to move this one to the basement. And if the modem is in the basement, how to adapt it back to the Cat 6 phone cable for the two locations above?
Luck favors those who are prepared

Jim Becker
Team Cub
Team Cub
Posts: 16374
Joined: Sun Feb 02, 2003 2:59 pm
Zip Code: 55319
Circle of Safety: Y
Location: MN

Re: New laptop

Postby Jim Becker » Wed Feb 04, 2015 11:08 pm

You need to have only 1 DSL modem. I assume you have a DSL modem in a separate box from your computer. Are you using a previously existing phone line from the basement to the second floor? Do you have filters at each telephone?

Without knowing the above, I don't want to start rattling off a bunch of potentially wrong suggestions.

User avatar
Bus Driver
10+ Years
10+ Years
Posts: 2917
Joined: Sat Feb 11, 2006 5:26 pm
Location: NC

Re: New laptop

Postby Bus Driver » Thu Feb 05, 2015 9:19 am

I believe that the filter is in the box on the side of the house, installed by the phone co which is also the ISP. The DSL uses one pair in the cable and phone uses different pair. My present modem, purchased from them at list price (which is a premium price) is Zhone 1511-A1-NA. it is attached to other things only with cables. The DSL line plugs in from the wall jack and another plugs in and back to the computer.

http://www.zhone.com/products/1511-A1/1511-A1.pdf
Luck favors those who are prepared

Jim Becker
Team Cub
Team Cub
Posts: 16374
Joined: Sun Feb 02, 2003 2:59 pm
Zip Code: 55319
Circle of Safety: Y
Location: MN

Re: New laptop

Postby Jim Becker » Thu Feb 05, 2015 11:46 am

Wow, a single port DSL modem. I knew such things existed, at least in theory. Your basic problem is the "single port" part of it. There is no place to connect a second computer, wired or wireless. You need to either:
1) replace your modem with a multiport modem (which these days typically includes wireless) or
2) attach a switch to your existing modem that will provide multiple ports (can include wireless).

To keep things simple, I suggest option 2. Many multiport modems can function as a switch. Most common ones have 4 Ethernet ports. To use as a switch, one port (usually #1) is connected to the existing modem leaving 3 to connect computers, printers etc. Wireless connections can be made beyond the 3 wired connections. I'm not necessarily recommending this one, but I think it does everything I am describing:
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/netgear-150-wireless-n-router-with-4-port-ethernet-switch/9612883.p?id=1218131364790&skuId=9612883

As far as wiring and where to place it, I would leave your existing modem where it is. All you should have to do is unplug your Ethernet line from your computer and plug it into port 1 of the switch. Add a new Ethernet cable from your computer to any of the 3 remaining ports of the switch. The new laptop will connect by wireless.

My phone jacks are wired similar to yours, with one filter at the entrance. When I tried moving my DSL modem to a different room, I found out the hard way that not all the "unused" wires were connected, or at least not connected the same. It took a while to straighten that all out. That is why I am inclined to let the sleeping dog lie on your existing modem and location. I wouldn't move it unless you run into wireless signal strength problems (which isn't that likely).

As far as choice of a laptop computer, I think it mostly doesn't matter. I personally shy away from Dell, not because the computers are fundamentally inferior, but if you do have a problem, I've heard their support is terrible. My laptop is an Acer and my wife has a Toshiba, both doing fine.

User avatar
Bus Driver
10+ Years
10+ Years
Posts: 2917
Joined: Sat Feb 11, 2006 5:26 pm
Location: NC

Re: New laptop

Postby Bus Driver » Thu Feb 05, 2015 1:33 pm

"As far as wiring and where to place it, I would leave your existing modem where it is. All you should have to do is unplug your Ethernet line from your computer and plug it into port 1 of the switch. Add a new Ethernet cable from your computer to any of the 3 remaining ports of the switch."
I suspect that somewhere in here was intended to say "plug into the existing modem" or something like that.

Have no experience with Windows 8 but have heard very little good about it. Lots of refurb laptops on eBay with Windows 7 and good seller ratings. My son, who does not live nearby, says he has an unused license for the WORD which he thinks we can use.
I probably will get the suggested switch, a laptop with WIN 7, and the WORD or Office Suite. If that does not do the job, the budget does allow for starting over.
And if wife does not require WEB access here at home, I may just skip the switch. Will ask her.
Thanks for the suggestions.
Additional help welcomed.

I wired all my phone jacks as home runs. The DSL signal presently goes to just one one jack. All the cables are at one place in the basement, not in one of the fancy boxes, but the DSL could be connected to additional cables as necessary. I think each cable has 4 pair- it has been a while since I did the installation. All the work was done to CAT 6 specs at the Cat 6 wall jacks.
Luck favors those who are prepared

indy61
10+ Years
10+ Years
Posts: 1292
Joined: Fri Jan 25, 2008 9:02 am
Zip Code: 00000
Circle of Safety: Y

Re: New laptop

Postby indy61 » Thu Feb 05, 2015 2:02 pm

I wouldn't worry about rewiring. Your wife will probably like the wireless better than having a cable attached.


Return to “Message Board & Computer Questions”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests