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Dell 300m for BMW setup - upgrades necessary?

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  • Dell 300m for BMW setup - upgrades necessary?

    This is my first post! But, I've been reading like a good noob should.

    I have an old Dell 300m which has a pentium M 1.4Ghz and 1 gig of memory. I'll be running xplite and RR. I'm running a partition that I'm planing on just cloning the hard drive to the laptop. I had a few questions before I start working on the hard bits.

    Is a 1.4 pentium M going to cut it for decent start times?

    I can upgrade the fan or run it faster and install a 2.0 for fairly cheap or am I better off spending my cash elsewhere?

    In terms of the case, it is pretty sweet how thin it is, it'll fit under my passenger seat (i have a bmw 325iT) but...

    should i take out the internals and install in a new case? or should i leave it and ditch the screen and keyboard?

    The computer has an external CD drive which is fine since I won't be using it once it's in.

    I'm going to get the thing running first and get the bios stripped down and see how fast the boot is (or how slow it is).

    - Scott

  • #2
    sorry if I might be out of line here seeing as how I havent been online in a while but figured I would contribute whether good or bad.

    I too have an x300 (your brother laptop) at 1.4 which I use daily. If you intrested in using one of these I probably wouldnt do it. I have taken mine apart probably 5 times in the past 3 years for servicing, you must know the heat transfer isnt very good at all and the fan is not very efficient. The OEM drive failed so upgrading to a 5400 made the system boot a few seconds sooner and increased program load time a tad but not as much as a 7200 although with each speed increase, you lose battery time.

    Other than cooling issues, I and other people in forums, have had problems cloning the laptop screen on an external monitor on the 82852/82855 chipset along with other problems so see if you are using that intel chipset and make sure you can clone the desktop before going further. A stripped lite version of xp will keep your video from lagging when RR and winamp or whatever is running but not with a full xp pro install unless you have a non-oem harddrive. I've used 98, NT, XP Home/Corp/Pro, Ubuntu and OSX 10.2.8 on my x300 so I am not ignorant to the topic.

    The laptop should be able to boot just fine without a battery installed but the charger needs to be kept off of carpet or cloth as it will extremely overheat and malfunction. These are still $20 w/ shipping from ebay.
    Make sure to make a hard drive image once you get it setup (if you plan to) so you can restore quickly on the fly if there is a problem. I think you have a bios limitation on disk size but not sure, might want to check into flash upgrades to make sure its current.

    Hope it helps someone some. Goodluck!


    • #3
      Good post there SRB310
      I would also add something hard and flat to put between the laptop and the carpet and make sure the exhaust ports are not blocked to allow for better cooling.
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