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Thread: Computer experts: Dell Optiplex 745/755 or Lenovo Thinkcentre M55?

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    Flashaholic* Trashman's Avatar
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    Default Computer experts: Dell Optiplex 745/755 or Lenovo Thinkcentre M55?

    Hi guys,

    So, my laptop finally bit the dust. It may be fixable, I dunno, I get a "NTLDR is missing" error, whenever I try to boot from CD. I formatted the hard drive, expecting to reinstall windows, but I can't boot from the CD. Normally, after entering the boot menu and selecting the boot from CD option, it says, "press any key to boot from CD" (or something similar), but it's not saying that, it's saying "NTLDR is missing." I've try to resolve the problem, without luck. The laptop is old and outdated, so I'm thinking about getting a desktop, now. I'm looking at either the Dell Optiplex 745/755 or a Lenovo Thinkcentre. These are both business oriented machines and are supposed to be very reliable and have a long life. Does any body have any experience with these machines and have any opinion about which might be a better choice and why? (lets say they have the same specs, basically.)

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    Flashaholic* Tekno_Cowboy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Computer experts: Dell Optiplex 745/755 or Lenovo Thinkcentre M55?

    Both the Dell and the Lenovo are good machines, pick whichever meets your needs best.

    You might want to try linux on your laptop, it's a great way to get a little more out of ageing machines. I prefer Fedora myself, and I hear tell that Ubuntu is also very nice.

    As far as the error, it sounds like you either have a bad disk, or you're trying to boot to the hard disk, instead of the cd. Try bringing up the boot menu and selecting your cd drive to boot from.
    Due to my current schedule being pretty darn hectic, I will not be accepting new modding projects until things settle down.

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    Flashaholic* Trashman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Computer experts: Dell Optiplex 745/755 or Lenovo Thinkcentre M55?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tekno_Cowboy View Post
    Both the Dell and the Lenovo are good machines, pick whichever meets your needs best.

    You might want to try linux on your laptop, it's a great way to get a little more out of ageing machines. I prefer Fedora myself, and I hear tell that Ubuntu is also very nice.

    As far as the error, it sounds like you either have a bad disk, or you're trying to boot to the hard disk, instead of the cd. Try bringing up the boot menu and selecting your cd drive to boot from.
    I've got several good disks to boot from. In fact, I even booted one of them just moments before the error. I do bring up the boot menu to boot from the CD--as far as I know, that's the only way to do it! I've got into setup, too, to make sure the CD drive is enabled and have even moved it up the boot chain--still, nothing. I've googled the error and done everything that is recommended, even burned an iso file that contains the necessary files to fix the error, but I can't boot from the bloody drive, period, so even that was bunk. If I could run anything on it, Linux might be a good choice, but I've not nill, so far. Actually, it's a pretty good laptop, that has been running 24/7 for the past several years--a real work horse.

    Regarding the Dell & the Lenovo, my main concerns are: which might be quieter? [and] Is either one preferred for being more easily upgraded?

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    Flashaholic* Tekno_Cowboy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Computer experts: Dell Optiplex 745/755 or Lenovo Thinkcentre M55?

    Looks like you've got all the bases covered
    I hope my Dell 1525 laptop keeps going like yours. A laptop makes a nice, power bill friendly fileserver

    I havn't worked with Lenovo's much, but my girlfriend's dad does. He says you're just as good off with either. I've worked with Dells for about 6 years now, and they seem quiet enough, and easy as any to upgrade. Of course, if you really want silent, you'll have to fork over some extra dough for a custom-built system.
    Due to my current schedule being pretty darn hectic, I will not be accepting new modding projects until things settle down.

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    Default Re: Computer experts: Dell Optiplex 745/755 or Lenovo Thinkcentre M55?

    Go with the Dell Optiplex 755. They have good customer service and warranty, also Dell keeps their drivers for each machine easily accessible. Lenovo has a tendency to forget to include important Ram driver updates on their web site. How powerful of a computer are you looking at (is it a workstation or is it just going to be used for browsing/ office use?). If you want a work station check out the Dell Precision T5400.
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    Default Re: Computer experts: Dell Optiplex 745/755 or Lenovo Thinkcentre M55?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tekno_Cowboy View Post
    ... if you really want silent, you'll have to fork over some extra dough for a custom-built system.

    Dell optiplex machines are pretty quiet out of the box without modification.
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    Flashaholic* gorn's Avatar
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    Default Re: Computer experts: Dell Optiplex 745/755 or Lenovo Thinkcentre M55?

    Since 2001 I have gone through 5 Dell laptops. Each has failed and had to be replaced. The last two were high end XPS units. The customer service I experienced with Dell was some of the worst I have ever dealt with. The laptops were good until they up and failed on me. I now have an HP gaming laptop that I have been happy with. I also have a pre Dell Alienware that is still going strong.

    I'm have not had any experience with Lenovo so I will not comment on them.

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    Default Re: Computer experts: Dell Optiplex 745/755 or Lenovo Thinkcentre M55?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tekno_Cowboy View Post
    Looks like you've got all the bases covered
    I hope my Dell 1525 laptop keeps going like yours. A laptop makes a nice, power bill friendly fileserver
    My laptop is an old Dell c610. I actually bought it second hand, here, on CPF.

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    Flashaholic* Tekno_Cowboy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Computer experts: Dell Optiplex 745/755 or Lenovo Thinkcentre M55?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lightingguy321 View Post
    Dell optiplex machines are pretty quiet out of the box without modification.
    Very true, but they aren't silent

    I've had mixed service from Dell. With a laptop bought from dell, the service was excellent. With my laptop bought at Best Buy, I just got "give us money, or go to Best Buy, and give them money". They were very rude and not at all helpful.

    Edit: Should read "after I bought my laptop" service was not for the laptop.
    Last edited by Tekno_Cowboy; 01-22-2009 at 08:45 PM.
    Due to my current schedule being pretty darn hectic, I will not be accepting new modding projects until things settle down.

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    Default Re: Computer experts: Dell Optiplex 745/755 or Lenovo Thinkcentre M55?

    I noticed on ebay, at the bottom of the product description for some of the Dell Optiplexes, they gave a disclaimer stating that if you bought the machine at Best Buy, you had to go to them for warranty service.

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    Default Re: Computer experts: Dell Optiplex 745/755 or Lenovo Thinkcentre M55?

    Quote Originally Posted by Trashman View Post
    I noticed on ebay, at the bottom of the product description for some of the Dell Optiplexes, they gave a disclaimer stating that if you bought the machine at Best Buy, you had to go to them for warranty service.
    I was just trying to ask where i could find older firmware versions...
    It wasn't even for my laptop, but the customer service person somehow refused to believe it wasn't, even though the firmware I was looking for was for a desktop!
    Due to my current schedule being pretty darn hectic, I will not be accepting new modding projects until things settle down.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Computer experts: Dell Optiplex 745/755 or Lenovo Thinkcentre M55?

    optiplex desktops and latitude desktops are the more reliable end of the dell product line. Precisions are also very relaible. From my experiences the XPS/Dimension line machines are no where near as reliable as optiplexes. Same goes for the laptops, latitude laptops are very reliable.
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  13. #13

    Default Re: Computer experts: Dell Optiplex 745/755 or Lenovo Thinkcentre M55?

    Sorry to raise this from the dead, but I just got a Latitude E6500 a week ago and it is an awesome laptop. Currently I use it docked at home with an external monitor and wireless desktop set from Logitech. On the road I only take the laptop in a case. It has really good battery life and quite frankly it with out a doubt will hold up well for another 5 years (through college then I replace it with something newer)
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  14. #14

    Default Re: Computer experts: Dell Optiplex 745/755 or Lenovo Thinkcentre M55?

    Go for an iMac.
    Windows=
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    Default Re: Computer experts: Dell Optiplex 745/755 or Lenovo Thinkcentre M55?

    sorry not a mac person quite frankly, so I will stick with my dell. Problem free shall I say. (honestly, the XPS and dimension/inspiron mobile product lines are more prone to technical issues and hardware issues then the Latitude/Precision/Vostro lines are.)
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    Flashaholic* Trashman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Computer experts: Dell Optiplex 745/755 or Lenovo Thinkcentre M55?

    I ended up practically "stealing" an Optiplex 755 off of eBay for $150! It's got a 1.8ghz Core 2 Duo in it. I only had 1gb of ram, but I've upgraded that to 4gb, and also got a video card for it. It was from an "iSoldit" store. They had six of them, all coming from Metro One Telecommunications, in Oregon. The computer's warranty just started last July, so it's practically a new computer. I've transferred to warranty to myself, and it's good until 7/17/11! Pretty sweet deal!

    It originally came with XP Pro loaded and the COA sticker for Windows Vista Business. For like $10, I got a Dell Vista Business reinstallation CD (ebay). I was planning on making it a dual boot system, but I did something funky to the hard drive while repartitioning it and I could no longer get XP to run, or even reinstall. I even did a long reformat and then proceeded to reinstall windows, but it wouldn't work. For some reason, Windows XP wouldn't boot. It would install up to a point, but once it got to where the computer reboots itself to finish the installation, it would stop. Oddly, Vista had no problem installing itself and booting, so I'm using Vista. I actually got the system to where I had the first boot menu come up and give me the choice of running, either, Vista, or "An earlier version of windows" (XP), but the XP part wouldn't work. Now, all I've got on the HD is Vista, and, fortunately, I like it. I was afraid to switch, originally, because I was so comfortable with Vista, but now that I've switched, everything is fine and dandy, so I'm happy. I'm totally lovin' my new machine! The processor may not be the fastest, but it's fine for what I need, and the motherboard supports up to a Core2Quad, so upgrading would be a snap, if I ever needed to. I've been running it 24/7, since I got it, and it's great.
    Last edited by Trashman; 04-14-2009 at 01:17 PM.

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    Default Re: Computer experts: Dell Optiplex 745/755 or Lenovo Thinkcentre M55?

    That is a great deal for a 755 considering that it is an average base config, how much did you end up spending on the graphics card and ram upgrade? Also, you should be able to get a windows vista OEM install disk for free from dell.
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    Flashaholic* Trashman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Computer experts: Dell Optiplex 745/755 or Lenovo Thinkcentre M55?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lightingguy321 View Post
    That is a great deal for a 755 considering that it is an average base config, how much did you end up spending on the graphics card and ram upgrade? Also, you should be able to get a windows vista OEM install disk for free from dell.
    Oh, I didn't know that about getting the install disk for free. Oh well, I only spend $10 on it. No biggie. The graphics card was $47. It was new. It's an ATI HD2400 Pro, which is about the most powerful one (still super weak, though) that my system will handle, with it's 250w power supply. It still makes things a little quicker with Vista, though, and I'm able to use the "Aero" theme (for which, a video card is required). The smaller power supply is good for me, as my wife is always concerned about the electric bill. I spent about $60 on the memory. The first 4gb I got was $31, shipped, but despite being PC6400, which I need, it was the wrong configuration, so I sent it back and payed for an upgrade. I could have payed $10, $20, or $26, depending on the quality of the upgrade. I payed $26 for the name brand (SuperTalent) memory.

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    Flashaholic* Trashman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Computer experts: Dell Optiplex 745/755 or Lenovo Thinkcentre M55?

    A little more about the oddity of my old Dell laptop...

    So, my non-working Dell laptop has just been collecting dust, so I decided I'd just sell it for parts, or perhaps, as a fixer. Right around the same time (a few days ago), I happen to come across the original 10gb hard drive from the laptop and thought, "hmmmm....maybe I've got the old operating system on here, and it'll boot up!" So, I stuck it in the laptop and it didn't boot up. It turns out I actually installed an Acer XP operating system on there, when tinkering with my wife's laptop, a few years ago. Crazy thing, though--I was able to boot from the CD ROM and install XP! My laptop is now working, although, after updating to SP3, the 10gb is nearly filled. So, knowing that I was able to boot from the CD ROM, I decided to put in the old 40gb HD and give it a try. No dice. I still got the NTLDR Missing message and could not boot from the hard drive. That just seems wacky. Why is the hard drive that I formatted preventing me from booting from the CD? It did the same thing with two hard drives, so I figured I must have screwed something else up, but now I'm just confused. Anyway, I put the 10gb HD back in there and the computer works fine. It's now up on eBay. As I'm typing, though, I'm wondering what might happen if I put the 40gb HD in my wife's old Acer and use the Acer recovery disc to reinstall the Acer XP OS, and then put it in the Dell and see if it'll let me install XP on it, the same as what happened with the 10gb HD. That might be tomorrow's project...
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    Flashaholic* Trashman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Computer experts: Dell Optiplex 745/755 or Lenovo Thinkcentre M55?

    Last Update:

    What I had wondered about worked. I have no idea what is going on here, because I couldn't boot from the DVD-ROM drive in the laptop with two different hard drives, but when I stuck in a drive containing an older Acer XP OS, I could boot from the drive. So, I took the 40gb HD and stuck it in my wife's Acer. First thing that popped up was "NTLDR is missing," just like in my laptop, only my wife's Acer was still able to boot from the DVD-R drive. So, I installed XP using the Acer Recovery disk, then put the drive back in the Dell and was able to boot from the DVD-ROM drive, allowing me to install XP in the laptop. That makes absolutely NO sense, but it worked. The only thing I can think of is, perhaps, that the Dell laptop's BIOS was written for Windows NT (NT was what it came with), and the Acer's BIOS was written for Windows 98, and since it's made for an earlier version of windows, the 'NTLDR is missing' didn't affect the use of the Acers hard drive and the Acer formatted drive was able to work on the Dell. I say this, because when I booted the Acer recovery disk, it said, "Starting Windows 98." Well, that Acer never had Windows 98 on it. It was probably bought in 2005 or 2006 and came with XP, so I'm guessing the recovery system was built on top of older versions of itself, stemming from Windows 98. None of this really makes any sense to me, and if anybody has any insight, feel free to enlighten me!
    Last edited by Trashman; 11-17-2009 at 03:47 AM.
    That's it. No more lights! (ok, maybe just a few more.)

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    Default Re: Computer experts: Dell Optiplex 745/755 or Lenovo Thinkcentre M55?

    i just picked up a new asus laptop, with the i7 quad core HT....

    watching 1080p blu ray rips is such a nice experience at full resolution 1920*1080 on a laptop

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