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High Performance Components


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Comparative shopping

Merchants ratings

Motherboards  CPUs Memory Harddrives Videocards Monitors Keyboards
Floppy CD NIC CD-RW Sound cards Flash Cards Iomega
Epson StylusPrinter Modems Scanners Voice Parallel
and USB info
Cases Power

This page is devoted to notes on optimal selection of components for servers and clusters.   I do not update it often, but it might contains some ideas that can help you to use Goggle and other search engines to get more recent information. You help is welcomed (see the bottom of the page for the address). 

Dr. Nikolai Bezroukov

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Old News ;-)

4th Generation Intel® Core™ Processors Are Here

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Stalled sites

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Comparative shopping, computer and hardware, pc150 memory, external modems, sound cards. [Home] - Your Daily Source for the BEST Deals on the Net!

Merchants ratings

Some comparison shopping sites provide rating as part of their list

Top dozen places to check or seems to be the same company

TC Computers



CD-Recordable FAQ
Computer FAQ Superlist
Enhanced IDE FAQ Index
Epson Connection - FAQs
FAQ lists related to Ethernet
Gary Field's SCSI Info Central - SCSI FAQ Page
Maxtor HDD FAQ
REALMagic Hollywood DVD FAQ
The Enhanced IDE-Fast-ATA FAQ
The Scanning FAQ - Intro Page



The Viewsonic Q17 Big, Bright, Sharp, and Cheap

Linux Magazine: Taming The Two-headed Monster [single screen displayed across two monitors](May 20, 2000)

Network adapters

Acer ALN-310 Dec Tulip Fast Ethernet Card (this is a great card much better than 3Com). Netgear FA310TX works great and dirt cheap.

Intel EtherExpress card is also a very card (I85229 chipset cards rock!) and tends to have great
driver support. But you need to have the $$$ for the Intel cards



Onsale atCost offers brand name monitors at verified wholesale prices. -- 19' 390 no shipping costs


Focus Keyboard (see pictures at FOCUS Keyboards) You will pay more for this board but, if you are looking for standard AT enhanced keyboard with the windows keys (104 keys total), I do not believe you will find a better one. It looks good (wish the pictures did it justice), feels good, will take a lot of abuse. An additional set of users defined programmable function keys which simplifies the input of a command or a string of characters to a single keystroke. This feature saves the user from the annoying repetitive key-in task by defining the most frequently used commands or words to the 12 Programmable Function Keys. If you want to do yourself a favor and spend the extra 20 or so bucks for a quality keyboard-- there are two most promising models to recommend:

Ergonomic Resources Browsing Avant Stellar Keyboard -- similar to Sun keyboard and macro programmable, so you can exchange caps lock and Ctrl key for more convenient operation. Very expensive.


Well constructed case and relible power supply are important, especially if you plan to upgrade your PC. The quality of the power supply is crucial, especially for Athlon and P4 CPUs. Also level of noise of power supply is *very* important. In this case you need to spend additional money for a noise-rated power supply. If you can spend additional money PC Power & Cooling power supplies should be considered. The company has "Silencer" series that have approximately a tenth the noise of a typical generic power supply.

Ars Technica Case considerations




Linux Handhelds

Parallel port

What Is...EPP-ECP (Enhanced Parallel Port-Enhanced Capability Port) (a definition)

The Parallel Port Squeeze - Computer Peripherals - 03-06-1999

PPPT - Printer Port Programming Tool

The PC's Parallel Port

Beyond Logic (formally Interfacing the PC)

Kris Heidenstrom's PC Parallel Port Mini-FAQ Release 10

Interfacing to the IBM-PC Parallel Printer Port

Jan Axelson's Parallel Port FAQ

Linux and parallel port IDE devices

Second parallel port. You can install a second parallel port via an ISA or PCI expansion card. I would strongly recommend a PCI solution; the ISA parallel port cards I have tried in the past have been more hassle than I expected. Any Pentium computer will have one or more PCI slots. SIIG even offers a PCI card with two parallel ports on a single card. Expect to pay $40-$90 depending on the features of the expansion card.

ZDNet- Help & How-To- Add A Second Parallel Port

If you are going the parallel route you will probably be better off buying a switch. However, with Windows 98 and a USB port I highly recommend buying a USB scanner. Note, you can buy a USB hub, 1-to-4 and 1-to-7 are very common and transfer are not affected (you can daisy chain USB devices and hubs, 127 maximum USB devices per PC). Furthermore, there are parallel to USB converters available if you want to use USB with your parallel peripherals. Not only are transfer rates much faster with USB, but USB devices are Hot Swappable (i.e. you can connect/disconnect devices without rebooting, true plug-and-play). Good Luck.

USB Parallel Printer Adapters for your PC or Macintosh -- the Dell factory outlet store have them for $29.99
...Support Search Press Releases USB Parallel Printer Adapters for...
...increase in speed! The Belkin USB Parallel Printer Adapter makes... $31 at
PROVANTAGE.COM PC Products Superstore

PortGear USB to Parallel Printer

uPar USB-Parallel Cable $39


UH420 -- USB hub $39

Epson Stylus 600

Printer is very cheap (you can find for $80 or so at Brand name cartridges are expensive and does not last long. Best prices can be found via CNET. I think Epson 600 is superb. The Epson prints pictures better on ordinary paper than the HP on photo paper. The only problem I had was when buying fake Inkjet toner, don't do it unless absolutely necessary! See also Aardvark Reviews - Epson Stylus Color 600

CNET - Shopping - Latest Prices - INTL COLOR INK CARTRIDGE FOR STYLUS 400-600-800+-1520 (4) - Shopping - Printers - Accessories & supplies - Color ink cartridges

Compatible Inkjet Cartridges

Epson Compatible Cartridges Color S0200089 $19.95

The cheapest and the most risky way:


Power supplies

PC133-PC150 Memory & Athlon Power Supplies - Global Overclock



The Last but not Least Technology is dominated by two types of people: those who understand what they do not manage and those who manage what they do not understand ~Archibald Putt. Ph.D

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Last modified: March, 12, 2019