What do do with a free Sony VAIO...

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maurvir Steamed meat popsicle
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:lol:

Ok, seriously, this little machine feels like it could still have some life left in it. I put Linux Mint on it using a spare 250GB 7200RPM Seagate Momentus drive. (the ones with the flash storage + spinning disk). Most of the time when it feels slow, I can see the disk activity light. That said, System Monitor does sometimes show that one or both of the cores are pegged, so maybe it's time to just retire it.

On the flip side, it feels tempting to get a small, cheapish SSD. Ugh... Must stop upgrading old crap...
TOS
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i always thought those sony laptops were great

which one is it?
maurvir Steamed meat popsicle
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TOS posted:
i always thought those sony laptops were great

which one is it?


Image

It's the VGN-NW240F in brown, and it still looks really nice. Other than the hard disk, it's pretty original - T6600 mobile Core2 Duo with 4GB of DDR2-800 RAM. The keyboard is just a smidgen cramped compared to a desktop, but it's still very comfortable.

The rub is that it feels a lot like the Dell Inspiron I upgraded for my wife - that it has more potential than it seems, but is being held back by absurdly slow storage. Once an application is loaded in RAM, it feels very snappy and responsive. (Keeping mind, the app list is pretty much Firefox, Brave, Thunderbird, Discord, and maybe VLC/Media Player) Memory pressure is surprisingly low in Mint Linux, and it takes a while for the web browser to start pushing it.

Unfortunately, the sharp place is that it only has a 3Gb/s SATA-II port, which means getting a high-end SSD would be pointless, but I'm not sure how much just going SSD - even slowed by the interface - would help. I thought about getting a cheap Kingston or PNY for $20 to see if it would make a difference, because otherwise this machine would be perfect for writing on the road.
maurvir Steamed meat popsicle
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Eh, I can't really justify it for this one. I borrowed a 1TB Samsung 860 EVO PRO from work, and it did boot dramatically faster, but that high CPU load really took the shine off. That, and we have so many other things to spend money on right now, getting a marginal improvement in a 10 year old laptop just isn't worth it. It wasn't the dramatic night and day difference that I saw on the Inspiron 15 - that was like getting a whole new computer.

It's not that bad with the existing disk, and since I would probably only use it as a word processor for road trips anyway, I'm thinking leave it be for now.
Set up your own personal weather station and run it from the Vaio
There's a way to use it to generate money. It's a one time thing though
mmaverick my steady systematic decline
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Turn the thing into a magic mirror!
maurvir Steamed meat popsicle
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I decided to give the SSD idea a go. Since the original machine had a 250GB HDD, I opted for a 250GB Samsung 860 EVO SSD. (again, with the understanding that it could be used as a Linux boot drive elsewhere when this machine goes belly up)

That helped a lot - I guess I didn't let things settle with that borrowed drive, since I gave it back a few hours after getting it setup. At any rate, I have been using it as a e-reader, web browser, and a few other things for the last few days and it's been surprisingly decent. The memory pressure has been fine - I don't think I've pushed much beyond about 2.7GB of the 4GB, and that was with a lot of stuff running at once.

I can nail both cores to the ceiling (100% utilization), but most of the time it's not even that CPU bound. I will say that the lack of hardware h.264 acceleration makes playing a video in the background problematic, as that generally results in mplayer sucking down about 30% of the CPU - one of the few ways that my tablet is better. Playing MP3s, on the other hand, barely moves the needle.

I also installed Brave and setup the Google Drive offline extension. While I can feel a little jankiness, it handled writing in Google docs fairly well. Attempting to scroll through a document quickly can resulting in lag, but just working in a document is fine. That could also be the crap integrated graphics card, though.

To be honest, with a modicum of patience, this 10 year old laptop is still usable. Maybe not "fast", but definitely snappy enough to still get a lot of jobs done.
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What do do with a free Sony VAIO...