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Kent d.

Kent d.

Joined on 06/19/04

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Product Reviews
product reviews
  • 11
Most Favorable Review

Oh man have I been missing out

D-Link DWA-556 Xtreme Desktop Adapter IEEE 802.11g/n PCI Express
D-Link DWA-556 Xtreme Desktop Adapter IEEE 802.11g/n PCI Express

Pros: Fast. Easy to install. Works like a charm in Linux (Ubuntu 8.04, using ndiswrapper). ...and FINALLY a use for that PCI-Express slot!

Cons: Signal strength was pathetic at first. Don't even bother with the drivers that come on the CD. The signal strength doubled when I used the new drivers (this is still in Linux, but I assume the same happens in Windows). It's still only 40%, but it's quite usable (and that's pretty much what my old card was getting, too).

Overall Review: 1) I'm only using 802.11g right now, so no idea how fast it is using 802.11n 2) Using Ubuntu, be sure you've installed ndiswrapper (and it's friendly GUI ndisgtk) before you remove your old wireless card. 3) DOWNLOAD THE UPDATED DRIVERS.

Most Critical Review

Fast until it freezes

OCZ Agility 2 3.5" 240GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) OCZSSD3-2AGT240G
OCZ Agility 2 3.5" 240GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) OCZSSD3-2AGT240G

Pros: Blazingly fast!

Cons: After 2 months of ownership, it began causing the system to bluescreen with kernel_data_inpage_errors about once every week. After 3 months of ownership, I'm lucky if I can get 20 minutes of Minecraft in before my system stops working.

Overall Review: It's too late to get a refund, and I can tell from other reviews that a replacement drive will just give me more of the same grief. So screw it. I'm putting my old HDD back in, and if I ever try an SSD again I'm staying far away from OCZ.

Excellent cooling

ZALMAN CNPS9500A-LED 92mm 2 Ball CPU Cooler
ZALMAN CNPS9500A-LED 92mm 2 Ball CPU Cooler

Pros: I bought this because my quad-core AMD CPU was reaching upwards of 70C during games with its stock cooler, causing the BIOS temperature alarm to scream at me. Bought and installed this thing, went back into the game, and I don't think the CPU temperature ever went past 50C. Nice! Also, even with the fan at full blast, I can't hear it over the other fans in my case.

Cons: I'm actually a bit disappointed that, after all the "ouch sharp blades!" comments, I didn't cut my fingers at all when handling this thing. I got a papercut when opening the Newegg box, though. *shrug* Manual speed control might turn off some people, but I personally don't mind.

AMD Phenom 9550 Agena 2.2GHz 4 x 512KB L2 Cache 2MB L3 Cache Socket AM2+ 95W Quad-Core Processor
AMD Phenom 9550 Agena 2.2GHz 4 x 512KB L2 Cache 2MB L3 Cache Socket AM2+ 95W Quad-Core Processor

Pros: 4 cores makes encoding video, compiling programs, etc. take a fraction of the time they used to, and I expect to see similar improvements with new games (now that game developers are starting to take advantage of multiple cores).

Cons: Apparently my motherboard (Biostar TForce 6100 AM2) did not support this CPU, despite having the right socket type. So I had to get a new motherboard.

Zonet ZEW2500P Wireless Adapter IEEE 802.11b/g MINI USB / USB 2.0 Up to 54Mbps Wireless Data Rates
Zonet ZEW2500P Wireless Adapter IEEE 802.11b/g MINI USB / USB 2.0 Up to 54Mbps Wireless Data Rates

Pros: Once it's installed, it works reliably.

Cons: Getting it working initially in Ubuntu - this was using either 6.10 or 7.04 - was a major pain. Had to go through all sorts of contortions to get it to actually connect to the network: realizing that the driver it was using was worthless, blacklisting that driver, finding another driver online, downloading & COMPILING that new driver, etc. That was over a year ago, though, and in a recent LiveCD I tried out (not Ubuntu, though, it was more of a utility LiveCD than an actual distro) it worked instantly with no hassle at all, so I'll only drop one star from the score.

TRENDnet TU-ET100C to Ethernet Adapter 10/20/100/200Mbps USB 1 x RJ45
TRENDnet TU-ET100C to Ethernet Adapter 10/20/100/200Mbps USB 1 x RJ45

Pros: Works instantly and flawlessly in both XP and Linux.

Cons: None so far.