New computer?

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Bill M
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New computer?

My current computer was bought in February of 2008, didn't realize it was over 5 years old.  It still moves along pretty well for the most part but with the addition of SP2014 it is apparent that an upgrade is going to be necessary for my patience's sake.  I really haven't kept up with processors, etc.  My current is a 2.66 ghz, Intel core2 quad, 4 total and 4 gigs of RAM.  I changed the graphics card out to a enforce gt 640 when I upgraded SP so I could use directx 11.  I am still using Windows XP as well.  I have had my last 3 or 4 computers built by a local company but am thinking about doing it myself this time with some guidance from a friend who has done it.  

I'm looking for suggestions on what to build.  I prefer not buying one of the comp manufacturers machines because I don't want all the junk that comes with them.  Any suggestions are appreciated.

jimcrook@live.com
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Computer Build

I would say go with an Intel i7 - processor - always nice to go with the latest and greatest but usually the last

generation is pretty good as well and usually a little cheaper.   I have an i7-3770K and it's got lots of juice.

 

Memory is cheap these days and I went overkill with 32gb but I would say go for 16gb for sure.

 

Prices on SSD drives are coming down and most folks are putting at least their boot drives on SSD's now.  Just

be careful because there is quite a bit of difference in speed from one to the next.   I didn;t realize this when

I built my system about 18 months ago and I ended up with an SSD that is a little faster than a 7200rpm HDD

but not alot faster.   They do have SSD's which are alot faster.   For instance Samsung is making alot of noise

in the SSD marketplace and sell an 840 Series.  However if you want their fast one you have to buy the 840 Pro.

So make sure you know what you are buying.

 

Storage is still good on a 7200 rpm HDD as they are really cheap and really reliable.

 

I have an Nvidea GTX 660Ti  - another one of those ya gotta watch it scenarios as the GTX 660 and GTX 660 Ti

are different beasts with the Ti having quite a bit more get up and go.

 

The bottom line is you read all about all these supposedly lightning fast bits and pieces which lead you to believe

that l you r new system is going to be a rocket compared to your old, but in fact in day to day computing they

are a little faster, not night and day.  A decent processor, ample memory, an SSD boot and good video card should

really make a noticable difference in Softplan rendering smoothness and speed. 

 

I've built my last two machines and it is not really difficult at all.

 

JimC

Bill M
Bill M's picture
Thanks for the input Jim.  I

Thanks for the input Jim.  I had wondered if I shouldn't have put in a bit faster video card when I replaced mine and add more RAM to get me by for a while longer.  I'm going to look into the items you suggested.  I have to assume, dangerous I know, that the boxes are still pretty much the same.  I have several boxes including the one my current machine is in that I can use without having to purchase a new one, just need to gut one.

Bill Wimberley
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Power supply

Don't forget to add up the power requirements for all your components and get a power supply big enough to handle everything.

Bill is the owner and maintainer of SoftPlanTuts.com

Bill M
Bill M's picture
Thanks Bill, I had thought

Thanks Bill, I had thought about that since I recently replaced my video card and that seemed to be stressed by manufacturer of the card.  I will most likely order parts from either newegg or tiger direct and hopefully I can get some guidance from them.  

 

jimcrook@live.com
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All That Talk

All this talk about equipment got me revved up so I went out today and lucked out by getting a half price deal on

a 27" LG IPS monitor to go with my 2 - 24" Benq monitors so now I am officially running a three monitor setup :-)

I feel like I'm at the  movies !!!

 

JimC

Bill M
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When the new machine is in

When the new machine is in place I want to connect a second monitor.  I have two on my desk now but two computers. 

Bill Wimberley
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Monitors

I have a 2 monitor system now. I don't know how I would work with just 1 monitor anymore. There are times when I wish I had more. It wouldn't be all that expensive to do. I would just need to add another video card. There are times, particularly when I am working with some of these plans that have many options all controlled by Building Options, when I could easily use 4 or more monitors. I currently use multiple windows and split each one up with Tab Groups in order to get everything to show at the same time.

joek
joek's picture
New computer

I wanted to rebuild my old computer and we installed a new Intel processor. Everything was set up and we try to re-install SP but wasn't succesfull. Since SP 12 still using parallel port and the new processor don't have installed on it, we wasn't able to install SP.

Is the new SP 14 is USB type or still the old parallel port kind?

So we ended up re-installing old system. Any thoughts on this?

Thanks,

 

Joe K.

 

jimcrook@live.com
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Softplan 2014

2014 uses a USB dongle. 

 

JimC

joek
joek's picture
New computer

Thanks, I thought so.

 

Bill Wimberley
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Parallel card

Joe, you can purchase a parallel port card that can be installed on your new computer. That should allow you to use your old version 12 parallel key. New Egg has a nice selection. You can get them at most any computer supply outlet.

However, if you are using SoftPlan in your day to day business I would highly recommend upgrading to 2014. There will be a learning curve because the interface has changed considerably since version 12 and a ton of new tools have been added. But once you get up to speed the increased productivity will be well worth the money. And with the new 2014+ subscription plan the cost of upgrading is relatively painless.

joek
joek's picture
Bill,

Bill,

 

Thanks, but we did. We installed a new socket but program not recognized it. We talked to Intel support and they sad not much we can do to go around it. SP 12 looking for the socket installed on processor...Oh well.

I don't think so we will upgrade, since we're planning to retire in 2 years. Only problem we have what we can do with our over 1200 custom plans. :)

P.s. Actually it's helped to take out the processor and cleaned  and cleaned out housing. After put everything back, computer runs and loads faster. At least some good come out from our downtime.

i

Bill Wimberley
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New computer

Joe, is your new computer running 32bit or 64bit Windows? If 64bit you would have to download and install the 64bit key driver. SoftPlan Technical Bulletin I would recommend writing SoftPlan tech support and ask them what you need to do to make version 12 work on a newer machine. Your previous post indicated that you had contacted Intel support but not SoftPlan support.

joek
joek's picture
New computer

Thanks Bill.

 

We still on XP. It is done I just waiting on authorization  to return parts.

 

Joe

Bill M
Bill M's picture
Thought I was the only one

Thought I was the only one left on XP, glad you got it working again.

 

joek
joek's picture
Thought I was the only one

Yeh, like I said we're planning to retire next year and don't wanted to purchase new upgrade. XP just working fine.

 

 

 

Bill M
Bill M's picture
I read that MS will

I read that MS will discontinue support for XP in April of 2014.  No more updates, etc.  Gives me plenty of time to build a new machine.

Bill M
Bill M's picture
I have ordered everything for

I have ordered everything for a computer build, should be here next week.  I use Syncback and Acronis to perform backups and have everything 2014 backed up as actual files as if it were on my C drive.  Will this keep symbols, walls, etc that I have created or will I have to go through importing them from their respective drawings again?  I will be getting with SP tech support prior to trying to put it on the new Windows 7 64 bit computer.

Bill Wimberley
Bill Wimberley's picture
Transfering SoftPlan

The best way to transfer SoftPlan to a new computer is to use the System Options⇒​Archive⇒Backup from your existing installation. Transfer the archive folder to the new computer. Then after SoftPlan is installed and all the update patches applied on the new computer select System Options⇒Archive⇒Restore to bring in everything from your old installation. This process does not copy your projects so they will need to be transferred separately.

You may or may not want to transfer some items such as 3D Symbols and Textures if you have not added a bunch of custom 3D symbols and textures.

Bill M
Bill M's picture
Thanks Bill, I went through a

Thanks Bill, I went through a dry run down to the location which I assume I can change to one of the external hard drives I have attached to my computer.  Do you think it's necessary to archive "All"?

Bill Wimberley
Bill Wimberley's picture
Archive

The main thing to archive would be all the settings. If you have custom symbols, 3D models, Textures, etc. those could be copied individually rather than archiving everything including all of the ones that come with SoftPlan.

Bill M
Bill M's picture
Bill this worked beautifully.

Bill this worked beautifully.  Two of the biggest things I didn't want to have to repeat were setting up my tool bar again and re-creating some symbols that I have.  Two thumbs up on this one.

Bill M
Bill M's picture
Well I received the case

Well I received the case yesterday about 4:30 and by the time I went to bed at 11 PM last night I had installed SP 2014 and MS Office.  I'm not sure if I got lucky but it went flawlessly.  Will spend the morning installing programs and then deleting from my current computer.  My wife will take it over. 

Basic specs:  CPU AMD FX6300, Gigabite Mobo, 1 T Seagate HD, 16 GB RAM, enForce 650 Ti graphics, double dvd-rw, card reader.  

 

Bill M
Bill M's picture
Here are the basic specs.  

Here are the basic specs.

 

jimcrook@live.com
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Multiple Monitors

Bill Wimberly FYI, going back to the earlier discussion regarding the use of multiple monitors, you mentioned

that you could run more monitors if you got a second vedeo card.    I am running three monitors off of

one Nvidea GTX 660Ti video card.   Two run off of the two DVI ports and when I got the third monitor I hooked

it to the cards HDMI port ( it also has a Display Port as well ).   So I just plugged the new monitor into the HDMI

and presto three monitors at once.  ( two 24" and one 27" ).  I think I could probably run four monitors off the video

card if I also used the Display Port as well ?

 

I really like three as I always keep my photos of the project open on one monitor and have a 2D and 3D open on the

other two units.  Like you I often have numerous tabs open at once and have to switch back and forth even with the

three units.

 

JimC

Bill Wimberley
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You stud! 

You stud! smiley

Bill M
Bill M's picture
Fired up v2014 for the first

Fired up v2014 for the first time today since building this machine a week ago today.  Renders so much faster, it's really nice.  I have experienced the machine freezing on me some but the more updates that are completed the less they happen.  I think it will straighten out.  I've had one freeze up today and that was the first time I opened a rendering.  I started up again and tried the rendering again and it worked fine.  That's the only freeze today.  Looking forward to working with this machine.

Bill M
Bill M's picture
Well I think my 2 month

Well I think my 2 month computer build nightmare is finally over.  Having dealt with my new computer constantly freezing and having changed every piece of hardware out and some twice I finally changed the processor yesterday and the machine has been solid so far.  Hope I'm not speaking too soon but I don't think I am.  Newegg probably knows me by name now with the list of RMAs I produced.  laugh  It's been difficult keeping up here at Tuts but I have tried and I will have to refresh since I haven't drawn a thing in two months. I really wanted to try some of the things I had learned while I had the downtime but instead worked on a computer.  Now the phone is ringing again so this problem is going away not a minute too soon.  Glad to be back.