Thinking of building a custom PC

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SoyBigHead
07/30/02 12:47 PM
68.57.148.119

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ATX Tower... now then the real challenge comes down to choosing a motherboard and processor. I'm sure i want a P4, between 1.0 and 1.5Ghz, but thats all im sure about for those categories (mostly cuz i dont know enuff about motherboards and features/capabilities). Therefore, I'm throwing this out in the hope that some fellow computer geeks out there can assist in that category. For OS, im gonna try and somehow obtain Win98SE just cuz i hear XP lacks alot of backwards compatibility. Graphics shouldnt be a problem; i already have a ATI Radeon 7000 32 meg PCI upstairs in a box. Monitor will probably have to wait for a bit, but thats ok.
"There are three types of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics."
-Mark Twain
NathanKell
07/30/02 01:30 PM
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Why not Athlon?

Actually, if you *do* go Athlon, you'll save enough to buy a Geforce3/Radeon 8500, or even a GF4 Ti4200!
-NathanKell, BT Space Wars
Question with boldness even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason, than that of blind-folded fear.
Thomas Jefferson
ErichRaulfestone
07/30/02 01:31 PM
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Here be one:

The A7N266 Socket A DDR motherboard supports 200MHz or 266MHz AMD Athlon/Duron processors, and incorporates NVIDIA's nForce platform architecture with advanced integrated features for high-performance systems. The A7N266 delivers exceptional value and is the first integrated motherboard with enhanced performance features to satisfy the performance segment. $145 (near low end)

And as for the high end, here ya go:

Manufacturer: Asus A7N266E
Chipset: NVIDIA nForce 420D Chipset
Processor Type: Socket A for AMD Athlon, AMD Athlon XP , AMD Duron Processors
Memory Type: (2) DIMMS for DDR PC2100 266 MHz (Up to 2.0 GB)
Processor Bus Speed: 266 MHz
Hard Drive Controllers: (2) ATA100 EIDE Hard Drive Channels
Expansion Slots: (5) 32 Bit PCI (1) 4xAGP
Ports: (2) PS/2, (2) USB, (2) Serial, (1) Parallel
Onboard Video: nVidia Geforce 2 4X AGP Video Graphics
On board Sound: Dolby 5.1 Digital Audio, Line In, Mic In, Speakers, & Game Port.
On board Lan: Realtek 8139 10/100 Network Controller
Form Factor: Full ATX
Extreme Overcloking features.
Manufacturer Warranty: 3 Year direct warranty.

This one goes for around $185,

Here be a mid-range one also:

Supports Socket A AMD Duron, Athlon, and Athlon XP up to 1900+ and beyond
NVIDIA nForce 420D: NVIDIA IGP-128 north bridge and NVIDIA MCP south bridge
200/266MHz front side bus
Integrated NVIDIA GeForce2 graphics core
Integrated Dolby Digital Audio
ASUS ACR audio module with SPDIF-in/out interface
3 DIMM slots and up to 1.5GB of PC2100/1600 non ECC DDR memory support
128-bit TwinBank™ memory architecture for up to 4.2GB/s bandwidth
Realtek RTL 8139 10/100 Mbps LAN controller
5 PCI slots, 2 USB ports, and 1 AGP Pro slot, 1 ACR slot
ATX form factor

Goes for about $165


take your pick

Erich Raulfestone

Rangers, Lead the Way!
Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, "Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?"
And I said, "Here am I. Send me!"
Isaiah 6:8

......and I went......


Edited by ErichRaulfestone (07/30/02 01:45 PM)
SoyBigHead
07/30/02 01:44 PM
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eh just cuz i want something different; i have an AMD now and its not bad; just old (K6-2 266 :-/ ) But then again, who says i have to get a p4? Celerons are almost the same speed and cheaper too :-D
"There are three types of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics."
-Mark Twain
ErichRaulfestone
07/30/02 02:07 PM
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Athlons are up to 25% faster then Pentiums for the same price. I know I have a 1.1 Ghz Athlon>


DDR SDRAM Athlons double the pressure on Intel

By Jon Jacobi

(1/22/01)

The well-rounded performance of 1.1GHz and 1.2GHz Athlon-based PCs seems to provide more bang for the buck than anything Intel is offering these days. Though Pentium 4-based systems deliver superior multimedia performance, they take a notable hit on business applications. Now Athlon systems have a new trick up their sleeves: DDR SDRAM. DDR (double data rate) SDRAM offers twice the memory throughput of regular SDRAM; DDR SDRAM is accessed twice in the amount of time it takes to access SDRAM once. All indications are that when running memory-intensive tasks, DDR technology boosts overall system performance by 15 percent to 25 percent.
Erich Raulfestone

Rangers, Lead the Way!
Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, "Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?"
And I said, "Here am I. Send me!"
Isaiah 6:8

......and I went......
Durango
07/30/02 02:45 PM
65.212.106.131

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If you're into overclocking, Intel is more stable and more durable.

I've seen a lot of guys cook their AMDs.

In fact, I find that Intel chips are more stable, period.

But that's only because I've been using them since the 8080 came out, and I've seen every clone produced...TI, IBM, AMD, Cyrix, etc, etc...and I just believe that Intel is the best.

Yes, you can save a little money buying AMD, and as long as you don't stress it, you probably won't see any problems. Personally though, I would spend the extra $20 and get a superior processor.

If you don't, one word of advice: COOLING.
ErichRaulfestone
07/30/02 04:29 PM
164.76.107.185

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Hmmm..... Ihate to say it chummy, but Intel is NOT more stabe. I can cook ANY chip if I wish
to. Just because Intel cannot engineer a chip that is efficiant like a Athlon, dont go putting them
down. Just to let you know, I have seen a lot of INTEL's cooked also. So no they are not stable.
Just to show yo a we bit of info....



Feature AMD Athlon™ XP Pentium® 4

QuantiSpeed™ Architecture Yes No

Operations per clock cycle 9 6

Integer pipelines 3 4

Floating point pipelines 3 2

Full x86 decoders 3 1

L1 cache size 128K 12k µop (Trace Cache) + 8KB (Data Cache)

L2 cache size 256KB(on-chip) 256KB(on-chip)

Total on-chip full-speed cache 384KB 64KB + 12k µop

Total effective on-chip full-speed cache 384KB(exclusive) 256KB - 12k µop(inclusive)

System bus speed 266MHz 400MHz

3D Enhancement instructions 3DNow!™ Professional SSE2

Cache/prefetch controls Yes Yes

Streaming controls Yes Yes

DSP/comm extensions Yes Yes
Erich Raulfestone

Rangers, Lead the Way!
Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, "Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?"
And I said, "Here am I. Send me!"
Isaiah 6:8

......and I went......
KamikazeJohnson
07/30/02 05:10 PM
142.161.40.146

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Except that P4 supports DDR as well.

As far as I can tell, the best performance/cost chip is the P4 1.6 GHz (although I hear they're in short supply at the moment...go figure) It overclocks easily to 2133 MHz, up to 2.4 GHz or even higher if you really know what you're doing. And a P4 can run without a heat sink, and still not cook, because it automatically clocks itself way, way down if it gets too hot.

OTOH, AMD supports dual processors better, which may allow for a cheaper upgrade later on (buy a duelly motherboard and 1 chip now, the other chip later)

Of course, that's the (apparent) state of affairs as of last week, so it could easily be outdated 3 times already :-\
Peace is that glorious moment in history when everyone stands around reloading.
--Thomas Jefferson
Greyslayer
07/30/02 05:15 PM
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Until AMD actually release a progressive chip (they have already reached the limit of the chip's development so will have to wait for the hammer to appear) the intel P4 is the only chip worth buying. Even Intel-bashing groups have been commenting on this over that last few months and yet AMD have still done nothing at the consumer end of things while intel plan to release a P4 3.0 by the end of the year....

Greyslayer
Greyslayer
07/30/02 05:32 PM
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All the data you are quoting comes from 18 months ago. As far as the computer industry goes that means squat. AMD have done very little to their chips (and from all sources the chips are more unstable than P4 ... not sure of the difference between duron and celeron though). Any computer literate person worth their salt would know how much PC chip architexture can change over a 18 month period ... try data from a NORTHWOOD core P4 rather than the predecessor of the predecessor.

As a side note Soy ... buy only a Northwood core P4 which means you will probably not get a 1.4. In fact a local games machine builder in Australia doesn't stock anything lower than 1.8 for the P4 chips and considering how far behind we are usually in this area would indicate how hard it should be for you to find a chip below this mark (and also should make you suspicious if someone was selling you a chip below this mark).

Personnally I own a pre-Northwood P4 (1.4) and have had this crash on me only once in over a year.

Greyslayer
KamikazeJohnson
07/30/02 05:39 PM
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>>In fact a local games machine builder in Australia doesn't stock anything lower than 1.8 for the P4 chips and considering how far behind we are usually in this area would indicate how hard it should be for you to find a chip below this mark (and also should make you suspicious if someone was selling you a chip below this mark).<<

Funny thing is, though, due to a quirk in the architecture, a 1.6 acvtually outperforms a 1.7 (not sure how it compares to a 1.8) because it can be overclocked much higher. So if you're into overclocking, or know someone who is, the 1.6 is the way to go.

Oh yeah...for OS, go for Win2K...far more stable than Win98, but without the fluff and nonsense of XP. A friend of mine has been using 2K for about a year now, and he only has to reboot when he's installing new stuff (I think his record is 22 days without a reboot...)
Peace is that glorious moment in history when everyone stands around reloading.
--Thomas Jefferson
Greyslayer
07/30/02 05:45 PM
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I generally use win2k Pro and apart from the time I bumped my secondary harddrive which caused a power surge to corrupt my primary partition I haven't really had any problems with the operating system. The one I have heard to avoid is windows ME, dangerous on a good day.

Greyslayer
novakitty
07/30/02 05:58 PM
209.242.100.230

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FYI, DDR is double access to standard SDRAM, RDRAM is double access to a much faster base RAM (300 - 533 mhz, 2 accesses each cycle vs. ~166 mhz with two accesses per cycle) and P4 motherboards can be found to support both varieties.
meow
MadWolf
07/30/02 06:27 PM
134.53.144.73

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DON'T use XP ! it does nothing more than slow down your computer. Its designed to be TOO user friendly, Microsoft's XP is for Internet only, cant even play games on it well.
Nothing is Impossible, It is only Improbable.
Bob_Richter
07/30/02 06:37 PM
4.35.174.250

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Actually, though large, it's remarkably stable and almost universally compatible (as far as PC Games go.)

*I* even like it, which is saying a lot.
-Bob (The Magnificent) Richter

Assertions made in this post are the humble opinion of Bob.
They are not necessarily statements of fact or decrees from God Himself, unless explicitly and seriously stated to be so.
:)
MadWolf
07/30/02 06:41 PM
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IF you have older games like "mechcommander" "mechwarrior- merc's " Dune 2000" etc. In compatability mode it ruins your gameplay, and patches may or may not be avaible. WarCraft 3 has also been giving my bugs with XP and its a new game.

But thats just me. also i think the deskto looks horrible.
Nothing is Impossible, It is only Improbable.
Greyslayer
07/30/02 07:04 PM
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http://www.tomshardware.com/cpu/index.html

This seems to be the base of the argument ... what cpu to buy, from there alot of your selections are automatically made for you (ie AMD ... DDR RAM and so on).

A couple of simple things to remember:

- bang for your buck = AMD (whether that be more banging on your computer when it crashes YET again or not )

- alot of crashes are graphics related so make sure you have a stable card (not necessarily a FAST one ... unless of course you play something like CS then who cares about graphics?)

- RAM is where most of your bottlenecks will occur, avoid SDRAM despite the price.

- if all else fails you can always cook eggs on your AMD chip if you get one

Greyslayer
novakitty
07/30/02 07:24 PM
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You can change the appearance.

Only a few games have not worked for me (those that use programming methods considered "potentially unsafe", I will try to explain more if you want).

XP is slightly less likely to crash than 2000, but you NEED to make sure that all your hardware drivers are for XP, some older ones work, but not well.
meow
KamikazeJohnson
07/30/02 07:32 PM
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Don't forget that XP has a lot of aggravating new "security" features that not only stop...well...some...of the hackers, but also greatly inconvenience legit users.
Peace is that glorious moment in history when everyone stands around reloading.
--Thomas Jefferson
novakitty
07/30/02 07:36 PM
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Most of the good security features in XP are disabled by default, so look at all the options and find them before you go on-line.

The anti-user security has not troubled me yet, easier to deal with than reformating a hard drive that has been hurt because Win98 did not stop a program from writing over the file allocation table.
meow
KamikazeJohnson
07/30/02 07:40 PM
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I was thinking more of the "system specs" log...or maybe that feature was eventually removed, I'm not sure. People who frequently upgrade their computers can have their OS spontaneously combust for being installed on "too many distinct configurations". A change as small as adding a stick of RAM counts as a "new configuration"

As I said, my info on XP's "copy protection" is a bit old, so I'm not sure about the current state of those features.
Peace is that glorious moment in history when everyone stands around reloading.
--Thomas Jefferson
novakitty
07/30/02 08:26 PM
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That was reduced drasticly. Changing more than one major component every month supposedly will still cause the problem, but I have yet to face it. (RAM is not considered a major component, but CPU is and hard drive might be...)
meow
Greyslayer
07/30/02 08:27 PM
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You would hope Hard Drive is not considering people 'swap' hard drives often.

Greyslayer
SoyBigHead
07/30/02 10:57 PM
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Ok I read all these, and also talked to a friend about it (way earlier today tho), and since I'm primarily going to do this for gaming (well right now anyways), he recommended a Athlon b/c it supposedly has better performance at running single, large intensive programs than p4s. But he also said that if I wanted to run several large memory-intensive applications at a time, that a p4 was the way to go. Personally, i just want a fast processor :-D However, I did notice that Athlon processors are cheaper than p4s, even tho htey heat up like a mofo :-/. But thats what a good fan and heatsink are for right? :-D

Ohh and about OS. i want 98SE because i have heard that XP doesnt have backwards compatibilty for things like mechwarrior 2/netmech, and i still play that on Kali. 2000 isnt really an option because i'm not on a workstation or a business LAN and also ive heard that its backwards compatibility is worse than XPs. The difficult part is in FINDING a 98SE OS still on the shelf somewhere...well i guess its not THAT hard; i mean i COULD purchase it online somewhere ;-)
"There are three types of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics."
-Mark Twain


Edited by SoyBigHead (07/30/02 10:59 PM)
NathanKell
07/31/02 12:00 AM
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Didn't your previous computer come with 98?

And I'd certainly recommend AMD. (1.4GHz 1600XP here). I've used it for over a year (on an ECS K7S5A motherboard) and it's been rock stable and plenty cool. Clock for clock (even using AMD's funky XP "performance rating") an Athlon will outperform a P4. Certainly in bang for buck--up to almost 2x. The problem is that the new P4s just have more clock to throw against Athlons.

And: Pricewatch. Never, ever shop without it, I've probably only paid 60% MSRP through it. Use it in combination with seller-rating site and you're golden.
-NathanKell, BT Space Wars
Question with boldness even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason, than that of blind-folded fear.
Thomas Jefferson
Greyslayer
07/31/02 12:07 AM
216.14.192.226

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Heh I have Win2k Pro and I still play games like Crusaders of the Dark Savant (dos version) and Bard's Tale with no problems. It is based on NT technology but doesn't have the entire 'non-gaming' platform ideaology about it like its predecessor. My friend a large LAN admin (we are talking up to about 200 pcs connected for one weekend a month) got me onto 2k pro and it has been a stable gaming platform in fact I have never had such a trouble free gaming experience since I got my P4 1.4 with win2k pro

Greyslayer
SoyBigHead
07/31/02 01:42 AM
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been checking pricewatch; saw a AMD Athlon XP1600 i think, for like $75.
"There are three types of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics."
-Mark Twain
Bob_Richter
07/31/02 03:39 AM
4.35.174.250

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I've run an extensive selection of games on XP, from X-Com: UFO Defense (old DOS game) to Warcraft III, and problems have been minimal or nonexistant.
-Bob (The Magnificent) Richter

Assertions made in this post are the humble opinion of Bob.
They are not necessarily statements of fact or decrees from God Himself, unless explicitly and seriously stated to be so.
:)
ErichRaulfestone
07/31/02 08:27 PM
164.76.107.163

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There ya go, better????



AMD Announces IBM DB2 Database Software Support
For Linux-Based Enterprise Database Solution on
X86-64 Architecture



SUNNYVALE, CA -- July 30, 2002 --AMD (NYSE: AMD) today announced the 64-bit
enablement of IBM's DB2 database software for the upcoming AMD Opterona
processors based on AMD™s Hammer technology. The enterprise-class database
solution features a DB2 database on a SuSE Linux operating system, and was
successfully enabled to support x86-64 technology in two days.

DB2 version 8 common client interface architecture enables the operation of existing
32-bit, x86-based applications with direct access to DB2's 64-bit database
environment. As a result, enterprise customers will be able to optimize their 32-bit
investment and performance while incrementally migrating to a 64-bit environment as
their business requires.

DB2 takes full advantage of the AMD Opteron processor's x86-64 architecture to
generate faster query response times and improved data loading and unloading between
servers in a 64-bit computing environment.

"Todays announcement demonstrates the potential of AMD Opteron processors based
on Hammer technology to power enterprise-class database solutions. The speed and
ease of enabling DB2 to run on a 64-bit AMD Opteron processor-based system is a
testament to the evolutionary nature of the x86-64 architecture," said Rich Heye, vice
president of platform engineering and infrastructure, for AMDs Computation Products
Group. "DB2 customers will have the power of 64-bit database computing in an x86
environment through AMDs x86-64 architecture."

"DB2 running on an AMD Opteron processor-based platform will provide enterprise
customers with a powerful 64-bit solution and a simplified x86-based migration path,"
said Lauren Flaherty, vice president of marketing, IBM Data Management Solutions.
"Today's announcement further demonstrates IBM's commitment to provide customers
with innovative ways to maximize DB2 database performance and scalability."

"With DB2 enablement on x86-64 technology, SuSE Linux shows enterprise-class
application support on the industry-standard x86 platform," said Boris Nalbach, CTO,
SuSE Linux. "By combining the benefits of 64-bit computing and the x86 architecture,
systems based on the upcoming AMD Opteron processors represent a next-generation
server platform for Linux and will help accelerate the adoption of Linux in the enterprise."


IBM and AMD will demonstrate DB2 for Linux on the upcoming AMD Opteron processor
based on Hammer technology at LinuxWorld San Francisco, August 13-15.

Platform Milestones for AMD Processors Based on Hammer Technology

7/29/02: AMD Announces IBM DB2 Database Software Support for Linux-based
Enterprise Database Solution on x86-64 Architecture
6/3/02: AMD Announces Broad Industry Support for Upcoming AMD Opteron and
Eighth-generation AMD Athlon Platforms

5/22/02: AMD Announces 3DLabs, ATI, Matrox and SiS to Support Upcoming AMD
Opteron and AMD Athlon Platforms

4/24/02: AMD Announces AMD Opterona as Brand For Next-Generation Server and
Workstation Processors
4/24/02: AMD Announces Collaboration With Microsoft to Incorporate 64-bit Support
for the Future Eighth-generation AMD Athlon and AMD Opteron processors
2/26/02: First Public Eighth-Generation Processor Demo Debuts With 64-bit and 32-bit
Technology
10/15/01: AMD Discloses Details of Next-Generation PC Microprocessor Architecture
2/14/01: AMD Announces HyperTransportâ„¢ Technology- Broadcom, Cisco, NVIDIA,
and Sun Among First Adopters
1/16/01: AMD and Virtutech Announce High-Performance Simulator to Help Further
Enable 64-Bit Software Development
8/10/00: AMD Releases x86-64 Architectural Specification- Enables Market Driven
Migration to 64-Bit Computing
10/5/99: AMD Announces x86-64 bit Architecture and Future System Bus

About the AMD Opterona Processor
The upcoming AMD Opteron processor is based on AMDs eighth-generation processor
core, which is planned to mark the introduction of AMDs x86-64 technology. This
technology is planned to preserve companies investments in 32-bit applications while
allowing a seamless transition to 64-bit computing, as those companies require. The
AMD Opteron processor is designed to deliver high-performance server and workstation
solutions for todays most demanding enterprise applications. The processor is designed
to be scalable, reliable and compatible, which can result in lower total cost of ownership.
Key AMD Opteron processor innovations include an integrated memory controller, which
reduces memory bottlenecks, and HyperTransport technology, which increases overall
performance by removing or reducing I/O bottlenecks, increasing bandwidth and
reducing latency.

About AMDs x86-64 Technology
AMDs straightforward approach to 64-bit computing builds upon the x86 instruction
set, one of the industrys most proven and widely supported technologies. AMDs
x86-64 technology is designed to support applications that address large amounts of
physical and virtual memory, such as high-performance servers, database management
systems, and CAD tools. AMDs x86-64 technology seamlessly integrates into the
current computing and support environment, and is designed to enable enterprises to
deploy high-performance 64-bit capable systems that build upon the billions of dollars
already invested in 32-bit software.

About AMD
AMD is a global supplier of integrated circuits for the personal and networked computer
and communications markets with manufacturing facilities in the United States, Europe,
Japan, and Asia. AMD, a Fortune 500 and Standard & Poors 500 company, produces
microprocessors, Flash memory devices, and support circuitry for communications and
networking applications. Founded in 1969 and based in Sunnyvale, California, AMD had
revenues of $3.9 billion in 2001. (NYSE: AMD).
Erich Raulfestone

Rangers, Lead the Way!
Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, "Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?"
And I said, "Here am I. Send me!"
Isaiah 6:8

......and I went......


Edited by ErichRaulfestone (07/31/02 08:32 PM)
ErichRaulfestone
07/31/02 08:41 PM
164.76.107.163

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It seems no matter WHAT any one says, 'OL Greyslayer will always put down the AMD,
which is his OPINION. But from what my step-bro say, the government is changing over
more and more to ....you guessed it, AMD. WHY??? They are cheaper and more powerful for the
money AND they last longer....My step-bro still has his AMD Duron ar 200mgz and it
has NEVER failed.
Erich Raulfestone

Rangers, Lead the Way!
Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, "Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?"
And I said, "Here am I. Send me!"
Isaiah 6:8

......and I went......
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