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Building a Computer

So, in continuing my series of stupid newbie computer questions, I present: Building Your Own Computer!

-The Computer-
As you've heard, I first had a computer that messed up, then I took it to the computer dudes, and they said it was completely FUBAR, then I asked how I should salvage it. Now, after laying my eyes on the beautiful Linux-running $72 Computer, I said to myself that I should make one...

-What I Have-
I stripped my computer tonight, and I came up with a CD drive (doesn't burn, just reads), Floppy drive, hard drive, power supply (how the heck do I understand all those wires?), nice looking heatsink with matching fan, and various other parts from the Windows 98 computer.

-The Problems-
-I checked the links provided at the link above, and the prices had either raised, the item is out of stock, or the item had vanished completely...
-I would like to buy a minimum of parts because I am in debt with my parents, and being 13, I don't have a job to pay them off.
-I would like to run Linux, as it is one of the coolest things I've found recently.
-I do know that the link above is thumb-drive booted, and I would like to avoid that, but no biggie if I can't.
-I also don't know that much about computers, so I want to keep the computer sweet and simple.
-The components that I salvaged might not work with the new components (I.E. Motherboard)
-Maybe more.

-Pluses-
-It will be cheap.
-Case mods should be easy.
-Mistakes dont cost much.
-Linux is free.
-Linux looks very nice.
-It shouldn't need much RAM to run (Am I correct here?), so I can run more complex programs without it costing me.
-I have extra parts from the old Win98 computer that died.
-Probably more, but this is all I got right now...
First post
Second post
I am saying this right now- I suck at understanding computers, and if possible, comment to me like you would your 93 year old grandpa.

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yoshie2578 years ago
my computor says disk boot failure insert disk and press enter wtf!!!?
Goodhart9 years ago
How "old" is the defunct computer ? The HD might be absolutely useless if it is an old format no longer used.

Look at the prices of IDE hard drives...

BUT if it is not too old, you could use it thusly: turning the not so old internal drive into an external

This might be helpful too if you have the cash
its running 98, but he said it has a 2000 sticker on it (i think, i could be very wrong though), so im thinkings its probably an IDE drive. however, it is getting harder to find motherboards with enough IDE slots for a hard drive and optical drive(s).
yeah, the reason I posted the link to those prices is that, unless it contains vital data, sometimes it is more trouble than it is worth. I remember my first HD, it had 10 whole MEG on it LOL my 8088, sigh
i wish i had known enough at my first computer to have known the specs for it. all i can remember is that it ran dos, and was built before 1987... oh yeah, it could run windows 3.1. ah yes, hot dog stand... a lovely color scheme for a 5 year old. his hard drive does contain alot of music he said, but he would still have to put it into another computer to pull the data off first...
John Smith (author)  its a lion9 years ago
Well, the music was copied there from another one, so it isn't my only copy of it, and therefore not a big deal if I lose it. My dad has a computer at work that runs on Windows 3.1...Still works, and is their only computer there.
kick him in the forehead (figure of speech) for me.
eeeewww, I hated Windows before WIN95.....I purposely held onto Norton Commander for that very reason.
1987 ? It could be a 386 The company and serial number on the HD is probably searchable online to discover what it is.
we got rid of the computer about 10 years or so ago... i wouldnt even begin to know where in the world (literally) it may be.
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