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What to do with your old laptop . . .

turn your broken laptop into an arcade cocktail cabinet

Tue, 15 Jul 2008 18:17:39 +0000

hmm... i had thought about doing this before. the part i was hovering over was which side table to use, but this makes it easier. i'll try the ramvik.

i have a bunch of windows 98 class laptops. hmm... i wonder if they are good enough to run most of the games i like.. especially street fighter.

previously, i was thinking of doing a full cabinet.. a la Project MAME and all the like, but maybe this is a better option.

maybe i can replace my coffee table with like glass with one of these on each end. hmm... =)

Tue, 15 Jul 2008 19:14:06 +0000

oh and there's always that debate again... xmame (linux), mame (windows), or mess (windows). considering mame is directed at windows makes it more like a better choice.. and from what i understand performance is not really different because it's such a low level emulator.

Tue, 15 Jul 2008 19:17:36 +0000

more is lost by indecision than by wrong decision.

Tue, 15 Jul 2008 20:18:58 +0000

succinct description of my life. =/
well sort of. =)

Tue, 15 Jul 2008 20:20:00 +0000

And knowing is half the battle.

Tue, 15 Jul 2008 20:23:14 +0000

GI JOE movie coming!

why don't you put yoru decions on line and hav folks polled to help you decide...

Tue, 15 Jul 2008 20:35:28 +0000

so i have this ibm thinkpad 560. no cd. works fine. win95. 16mb ram. 2.0GB HD. 12 or 13" screen. color.

what should i do with it?

Tue, 15 Jul 2008 20:51:32 +0000

- add a pcmcia ethernet card and a bigger hard drive and turn it into a NAS.
- full time SETI client
- dumb terminal
- full time newsgroup downloader
- router/firewall if you can get 2 ethernets on it somehow

Tue, 15 Jul 2008 20:57:00 +0000

hmm... looking at the full specs. not sure if it's capable of those. it's a pentium (I). i've got a couple of pentium III compaq Evo N400c's too. and a couple of Thinkpad A21's. =) (i can get you specs if you want).

Part Number : 264040U Description : TP560 560E NB 5/166 MMX 16MB 2.1GB HD 12.1 TFT

Tue, 15 Jul 2008 21:14:06 +0000

yeah, i checked the spec before sending the suggestions... should be feasible...

- NanoNAS only requires a 486DX w/ 16MB RAM, the only thing missing is the PCI interface... I imagine you can just roll your own w/o the PCI requirement.
- there are win95 clients for ssh, newsgroups, SETI, etc.

Tue, 15 Jul 2008 21:24:40 +0000

:) thanks. but nas would be futile. no storage. usb didn't exist then either. i guess i can use it for dumb things.

Tue, 15 Jul 2008 21:27:15 +0000

You can't run MAME on those?

Chieh Cheng
Tue, 15 Jul 2008 23:47:54 +0000

P100 is too slow.

In MAME every emulated component is replicated down to the smallest level of individual registers and instructions. Consequently, MAME emulation is very accurate (in many cases pixel- and sample-accurate), but system requirements can be high. Since MAME runs mostly older games, a large majority of the games run well on a 2 GHz PC.

Wed, 16 Jul 2008 00:15:29 +0000

I see. that's too bad. I had thought that MAME ran with low system requirements.

Chieh Cheng
Wed, 16 Jul 2008 06:36:28 +0000

The official MAME binaries are compiled and designed to run on a standard Windows-based system. The minimum requirements are:

* Any MMX-capable AMD or Intel processor (Pentium III or later recommended for current versions)
* Windows 98 or later (Windows 2000 or later preferred)
* DirectX 5.0 or later (included with all versions of Windows 98 or later)
* A DirectDraw or Direct3D capable graphics card
* Any DirectSound capable sound card

Of course, the minimum requirements are just that: minimal. You may not get optimal performance from such a system, but MAME should run. Modern versions of MAME require more power than older versions, so if you have a less-capable PC, you may find that using an older version of MAME may get you better performance, at the cost of lowered accuracy and fewer supported games.

As of MAME 0.106 and later, MAME will take advantage of 3D hardware for compositing artwork and scaling the games to full screen. To make use of this, you should have a modern Direct3D 8-capable video card with at least 16MB of video RAM.

Around the same time, MAME added minimal multi-processor support, if you use the -mt flag. This means that some of the video processing can be done on a second CPU core if it is available. To take advantage of this, you should run MAME on a dual core (or greater) system.

Keep in mind that even on the fastest computers available, MAME is still incapable of playing some games at full speed. The goal of the project isn't to make all games run playably on your system; the goal is to document the hardware and reproduce the behavior of the hardware as faithfully as possible.

Wed, 16 Jul 2008 09:20:41 +0000

The N400c and the A21 are still descent notebooks. You can still run a whole mess of stuff on them. Consider my Windows server is only a HP Omnibook 500 with a 500 MHz CPU.

Chieh Cheng
Wed, 16 Jul 2008 17:24:30 +0000

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