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[Solved] Desktop toasted, some general questions

Discussion in 'Windows 10' started by icheckemout, Oct 8, 2020.

  1. icheckemout

    icheckemout

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    Oct 8, 2020
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    Operating System:
    Windows 10
    Our 9 year old Dell Windows 7 desktop got killed last night in a storm. Since its so old, the plan is a new Windows 10 machine. I think the power supply got fried but the SATA hard drive works. I press the power button and nothing at all happens. I have most recent important files, and a "fairly recent" backup, on an external HD (USB 2.0).

    Once the new desktop is set up, what I hope to do is migrate some files, and if I can, a couple programs to the new computer.

    I'm just not sure where to get started. Cost is a factor. I'm retired and my wife had a recent 2.5 month blip in employment. I have a little computer experience, but not a lot. Any thoughts would be appreciated. Thanks.
     
  2. Tony D

    Tony D Administrator Administrator

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    Hello and welcome,

    The power supply could have taken a hit. It would be nice if you had a spare hanging around that you could swap out. If you have a voltmeter, you can open the machine and check for the standby voltage.

    On the other hand, as you mentioned, maybe it's time to just get a new machine. You can connect the hard drive from the old Dell desktop to the new computer using a SATA to USB adapter. https://www.amazon.com/UGREEN-Cable...=1&keywords=sata+to+usb&qid=1602159372&sr=8-6

    You'll connect the adapter to the old hard drive's SATA port. Then connect the USB connector to the new computer. Since the desktop hard drive will be a 3.5" drive, you'll need to also connect the AC power supply to the adapter.

    The hard drive will show up in Windows Explorer. You'll be able to copy files to your new computer. You won't however be able to transfer programs to the new computer. Programs need to be installed using the install media which may be CDs or downloaded installer files.
     
  3. icheckemout

    icheckemout

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    I'd read about those but there's so much stuff available now, I didn't know where to begin. Thanks for your help.
     
  4. Tony D

    Tony D Administrator Administrator

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    I forgot to mention - I'm not recommending the adapter I posted. I'm also not recommending that one. It's just one that came up when I searched for SATA to USB adapter.
     
  5. icheckemout

    icheckemout

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    OK, got it.
     
  6. Digerati

    Digerati Registered Members

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    Location:
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    Operating System:
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    Sorry to hear that your computer got zapped but as Tony suggested and you already surmised, it is probably just time to get a new computer. I will suggest you unplug this computer from the wall for about 30 seconds, then plug it back in and see if it boots. Note the ATX Form Factor requires all ATX power supply units (PSUs) to provide +5Vsb standby voltage to multiple points on the motherboard whenever the PSU is simply plugged in and, if it has one, the master power switch on the back is set to On (1). The only way to totally remove that +5Vsb standby voltage is to unplug the PSU or flip the master power switch. There is a "slim" chance the PSU or the standby circuits it is power just needs to be reset. To be honest, I would not hold my breath because it is a very slim chance, but it is still worth a try.

    If you are lucky and it does boot, I would urge you to quickly make sure you have copies of all the important files you don't want to lose. But because it is still 9 years old, I recommend you continue with your plans to get a new computer.

    Since you said you have most everything already copied on to your external USB drive, not sure you need to worry about adapters. However, you should make sure you "wipe" the old drive before you get rid of that old computer. We can help you with that when the time comes.

    You mention you want to "migrate" a "couple" programs over. While that is usually possible, I generally recommend installing anew, those programs you still want. This is for several reasons, but most importantly, it ensures you install the latest and only the latest and thus the most secure versions of those programs, and not years of left-over, older version files that may be less secure or just not needed. Plus, if there are any special configurations for W10 vs W7, they will be properly set too.

    I will also note the W10 desktop and start menu will be quite foreign to you so there will be a bit of a learning curve. However, most have found, with a little time and patience, it becomes intuitive. That said, if you find you really miss the old W7 desktop and start menu, check out Start10. It brings back the familiar W7 Start menu and desktop and for just a one-time cost of $5 for a lifetime license, it is well worth it. It has a decent 30-day trial period too, if still unsure.

    Last is security. It is important to note the bad guys are still out there and constantly looking for easy targets. The good news is, W10 is the most secure Windows to date right out of the box. And unlike W7, it has a very capable anti-malware solution, Microsoft Defender (formally Windows Defender) built in and enabled by default starting with the first power up. While you certainly can install your own security solution, you don't need to. For the record, Microsoft Defender is what I use as my primary security solution on all my systems.
     
    allheart55 (Cindy E) likes this.
  7. icheckemout

    icheckemout

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    Digerati, thanks for expanding with some helpful details.

    The computer has been unplugged overnight so I'll give it a shot. But a new machine is imminent, we probably were lucky to get 9 years. At one point a few years ago, I did have to replace the HD and do a recovery.
     
  8. Digerati

    Digerati Registered Members

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    Yeah, 9 years is a good run.
     

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