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SSD to speed up old machines, netbook, Core 2 duo laptop, etc.

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
So we will start off with a quick story.

I acquired a netbook for $100 with a 250gb hard drive, 2gb of ram and a dual core celeron cpu (haswell based) It is an ACER ES1-111m C7DE.
To keep this short I got the laptop in less than stellar condition, it was a little dirty and had fake cleaner software on it.
I was already going into this buy knowing that i would be putting a little work into it so this wasn't a concern.
Boot up time before touching anything was 1 minute and 17 seconds. Ew.
I did a reset of everything on windows 8.1, then proceeded to remove all the Acer bloatware on it. After all that work was done, hard drive was cleaned and defragged i had a boot time of 39 seconds. WOW what an improvement!
So I cloned the OS onto an SSD, installed it and tested again. I let windows boot up to detect the new hardware then tested the boot time.
15 seconds!!! SMOKIN!!
I knew SSDs were awesome but it improved the performance of this otherwise low end basic machine to the point of booting up faster than my multi thousand dollar gaming setups. I think that is mainly due to the gaming boards bioses being a little more extensive than the basic laptops but that's not the point here. Point is how much perceived speed and performance you can get out of the low end machines from a simple upgrade to an SSD. I have an 8GB stick of ram on order for this thing which will max the ram as well.
In a nutshell I have a netbook that weighs 2.48 pounds, boots in 15 seconds from a completely shutdown state, and wakes from sleep in less than 2 seconds. Did i mention it has 6 hours of battery life? This is mostly due to the fact I have removed the only device that had moving parts in it. The netbook is completely passively cooled and the drive is an SSD now so there's no moving parts there. For an internet machine and word processing what more could you ask for? 2.5 pounds, 6 hours battery, 100% SILENT, and blazing fast boot/wake up times. It's a budget laptop dream come true. The only thing missing is a touchscreen interface, but oh well, who can complain about it when you're less than $200 in?

All this was done essentially to replace my brothers ever aging core 2 duo HP laptop. I bought it for him used in 2010. It has 4GB of ram, dual band wifi, built in webcam, and all the usual gadgets that people were looking for in laptops at that time. It was bought essentially completely decked out at the time it was brand new.
So all the things I did with the Acer netbook to improve performance dramatically, got me thinking... How much could an SSD improve a system that is potentially almost a decade old?
Has anyone done this? what was your experience?
I plan on undergoing this experiment myself with a cheap $40 120GB SSD. If the experiment is a bust then I will just re-use the ssd in one of my machines at home and sell the C2D laptop for likely $50 or so. But if the SSD upgrade improves performance how I hope it would, then I might just be able to prolong the life of the machine to the point where it is actually worth selling to someone to use for another couple years.

Let me know your thoughts on this and if you think I am wasting my time putting SSDs in low end or older machines. Cheers! smile.gif
post #2 of 5
Well, you've "discovered" something that's been known for quite some time. That hard drives, especially slow, 5400 RPM drives, have been slowing down computer for ever.
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Samsung 840 PRO Asus DRW-1608P (x2) Custom Water Cooling Win7 (Ult), Win 8.1 & Win Server 2012 R2 
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2 X Samsung 915N Ducky Shine III, Blue Cherry/Blue LEDs PCP&C 1kw Lian Li PC-71 (W/Window) 
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post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by billbartuska View Post

Well, you've "discovered" something that's been known for quite some time. That hard drives, especially slow, 5400 RPM drives, have been slowing down computer for ever.

Yes I have been well aware of this for some time but just wasn't sure how dramatic it could improve even the crappiest of machines. people often think netbooks are worthless if you want to do anything more than browsing facebook but this has got to be one of the best things you can do for any computer. on top of that SSD's are coming down in price to where they are affordable for decent sizes, 240gb often are going for around $60.
Now the only "problem" or bottleneck on this machine will be the cpu, and even then this little weak cpu just chugs right along. only hiccup I noticed is when I was doing an extensive disk cleanup while trying to watch a youtube video and it just wasn't having it. little celeron was pegged at 100% and not letting me do much. Buddy of mine claims disabling the superfetch service in windows 8.1 will fix this. Time will tell if he is right or not.
Still though, the question still remains.
has anyone done this to what would be considered by most on this forum to be an ancient machine? Core 2 duo is dog slow to begin with but then again so is the low end celeron in the netbook. Aside from battery life and physical weight would I be able to expect similar performance gains from the SSD? oldest computer I have put an SSD in to date is a 6 core AMD machine.

EDIT: all this boils down to just wanting to see SSDs in more budget orientated laptops without being marked up $300 for a 120GB SSD. Money hungry OEMs are annoying thumbsdownsmileyanim.gif
post #4 of 5
I have replaced a Core 2 Duo E6850 with a Quad Core 9400 and added SSDs to two old Dell Optiplex desktios.- amazing!
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Samsung 840 PRO Asus DRW-1608P (x2) Custom Water Cooling Win7 (Ult), Win 8.1 & Win Server 2012 R2 
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2 X Samsung 915N Ducky Shine III, Blue Cherry/Blue LEDs PCP&C 1kw Lian Li PC-71 (W/Window) 
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My System
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
FX6300 Black M5A99X EVO R2.0 Nvidia GTS450 Team Vulcan PC3 12800 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 840 PRO Asus DRW-1608P (x2) Custom Water Cooling Win7 (Ult), Win 8.1 & Win Server 2012 R2 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
2 X Samsung 915N Ducky Shine III, Blue Cherry/Blue LEDs PCP&C 1kw Lian Li PC-71 (W/Window) 
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post #5 of 5
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by billbartuska View Post

I have replaced a Core 2 Duo E6850 with a Quad Core 9400 and added SSDs to two old Dell Optiplex desktios.- amazing!

Well I guess it's a go to slap a 120gb in the ol' hp and see how things go. thumb.gif
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