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any computer savy people here...?

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On ‎2018‎-‎06‎-‎18 at 8:06 AM, Willys said:

I hate unions personally...


Lawyers can be added to that list - they are in a union (the various provinces associations are nothing but unions, with typical left-wing socialist agendas), doctors have their unions, banks for sure have their unions...


I am embarking on freeing myself from all of this bureaucracy where possible, no, not as a freeman of the land (that is dishonest movement of tax avoiders), but simply as I vote with my wallet. Tired of rainbows being flashed at me every time I am in a branch or a bank machine.... so TD is off my list. Tired of a lot of things, but I give where I can.... which is more the emphasis.


Sorry to be slightly off-topic, but I had to reply to this.


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Share on other sites's not for the sole reasons I had at the begining of this thread...go figure!

I want, not need, so now it's a different story, I have to pay for this toy...augh!
I laptop that will do basically what my desktop does now, but also will operate this MBSTAR set-up for obvious reasons. I have been told i can do it by a man in the know using a modern to kill two birds with a single stone, here I go again! 
Here's my list  that I think I need to ask for.....copied and pasted.....


Thank you, for helping me....




OK, I want to buy a modern new laptop for my personal use anyway that can be used as possibly my main PC....and if I can run this STAR from it even better.... Saves me money and I get two birds with a single stone.  I probably will spend $1500 on one....I am as you know buying blind made a list of what I may need to ask or look for:


1: I want a larger screen sized machine just to help save my older eyes, HD 1920X1080 res with possibly any angle viewing

2:size and weight are not that much of a worry I do not think as I won't be carrying it around much.

3:keyboard needs to have large keys with space between keys for fat fingers, back lit also.

4:CPU....Core i5 or better

5:Ram.....4GB or better

6:Storage ...256GB   SSD

7:Battery life with 44Wh-50Wh   fort best results...want to be able to travel and get the best rechargability and such, camping etc, being charged from a vehicle or solar?

8:USB ports....USB3.0    no less than 2  the more the better

9:Build Quality....must be rugged....rain and dust much testing has developer done...?

10:Things I need it to do...

a;run an outside monitor

b:able to use a normal mouse

c:possibly use a normal keyboard?

d:can it be hard wired into a modem

e:what about external back up storage? is it needed at all..?

f: can I use an external sound system which I have at the moment?

g: will it have the typical monitor plug to plug in my monitor...the "D" shaped plug with two screws at each end to hold it in, horizontally situated, don't know what it's called?

h: lastly be able to play typical simple FB games such as Pirates tides of fortune and stormfall age of war...they are the only mindless games I play and have been for years, so hard to give them


Lastly is there a make to go for and also definately steer clear of?


OK, is this list good enough or does it require some tweeking?

I will thank everyone now beforehand for all their help and suggestions.....the list was made up after me doing some reading on line about what other people think is best to ask for?


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As far as a laptop an Apple Book Pro an older version that has all the ports and dvd  player built in , But it's no good for your star, because I be-leave it is windows xp based so that may restrict you some what. Maybe some has a newer version of that will work with a star not sure on that part.   

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Yikes, windows XP based? Wonder if it can run under an emulator such as virtual box which is how I run the MB parts catalog on my MacBook Pro. Granted doesn't the star system have a control box between the laptop and cables so I suspect you want something that is a known good setup.

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If the STAR system requires Windows XP, you aren't likely to find a modern system that can run that natively. Can the STAR system run in an emulation environment?


Let's condense your requirements into something that looks like a spec sheet instead of a long-winded commentary:

  1. HD 1920X1080 (1080p)
  2. Size and weight not a factor
  3. Full-size backlit keyboard
  4. Core i5 or better
  5. 4GB or more RAM
  6. 256GB or more SSD
  7. Maximum battery life
  8. Minimum 2× USB3.0 ports
  9. Built-in Ethernet
  10. Ruggedized against water and dust

Things you need it to do...

  • run an outside monitor (via an old VGA style connector?) Modern laptops will have HDMI out. Upgrade to an HDMI external display, or be prepared to use weird adapters and cables
  • able to use a normal mouse Yes, using USB
  • possibly use a normal keyboard Yes, using USB
  • can it be hard wired into a modem? Yes, if you get one with built-in Ethernet, or use a USB Ethernet adapter 
  • external back up storage? is it needed at all..? If you don't use external backups, you're a fool
  • can I use an external sound system which I have at the moment? How is it connected? Headphone jack, or USB?
  • be able to play typical simple FB games There probably isn't a computer made today that can't handle basic games


You're likely going to be able to find most of what you need, but you'll have to give up some legacy connections if you're used to old PS/2 style mouse and keyboard connections, and a VGA external display connector. 


If you want a ruggedized laptop with a big display and lots of battery life (or swappable batteries), be prepared to pay a lot for it.

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Posted (edited) · Report post

Sound is done from headphone jack so thats easy I expect.

As for back up power, can you use one of the power packs you can buy to recharge your equipment etc or are you forced to swap batteries?

I was just hoping to keep my 21 inch monitor but could loose it if I must....? P{ossibly buy a newer version at a later date with more modern plug ins.

I always thought an external back up system is best, I have been bitten before years ago, we have a TG back up now, if that's the right term for it...?

Can the STAR system run in an emulation environment? ...This I do not know....but will find out....


Next is what would your best suggestion be for what I want and wish to pay...?  OR is it even possible for $1500...?

Edited by Willys

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Laptops with Windows XP are still around and in use.  (My wife has one)


If that system is what you need, maybe posting a 'wanted' ad on Kijiji or E-bay specifying the need for that OS will get you what you need to get started.  ..  Just a thought


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If you only need a Windows XP laptop for the STAR system then just buy a dedicated used machine for that purpose only.


XP (I love how it autocorrects to 😝 on my iPad) is no longer supported, and is probably a prime target for viruses and exploits of all kinds. I would use an XP machine only in quarantine mode, entirely shut off from any Internet access. 

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OK, so no internet use with a STAR system, so that stops a expensive laptop purchase once again, just doesn't make sense. I will hunt for a secondhand laptop to do the job required. Then the C3 multiplexer and cables. I'll slowly get the right stuff bought and understood if it kills me!
Sorry to keep going back and forth but asking questions is the best way not to make expensive mistakes when I don't live in this world.
Thank you 

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On your laptop monitor you can increase the text  and app sizes to help with readability, hope this helps in your new purchase. There is another way, find an laptop that can accommodate two hard drives or segregate the one and have two operating systems in one drive allowing you to switch from one to the other, then you have the best of both worlds.   

Edited by Wild!
One my apple and my home computer I have this.The apple has a segregated drive with windows on the other side and the home unit has two separated drives xp and 8, I will be adding 10 one I've replaced my pump, I had to do the liquid coole thing with mine.

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Interesting..?  I have bitten the bullit and ordered the C3 Multiplexer and cables etc, it'll be here next week. So I'm half way there I suppose. Now trying to figure out the best option for the laptop requirements etc. 


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OK, I am the prowd owner of a brand new multiplexer and cables, and a hard drive...excellent, now the next part a laptop.....the choices are endless.....augh!

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