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[T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop *PIC*

T20-T23 Series and T30 specific matters only. NOT for T25-Retro.
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Fosco
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[T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop *PIC*

#1 Post by Fosco » Tue Dec 22, 2015 5:44 pm

Hi everyone,

I just acquired a T30 a few weeks ago (someone gave it to me). It was overloaded with a vast amount of useless softwares, after a fresh install of XP, it went better.

I got impressed about how it runs smooth with XP, I initially planned to use it as an offline pc for car diags mainly but I decided to use it as a "main laptop" for my trips.

A part from a (nearly) dead CMOS battery, a dead DVD driver and a bad estheitic shape (worn cover) the beast seems ok (not too much fan activity).

It seems like it's been upgraded in the past, it has a 80gb hdd (dunno the speed yet), 1gb of ram and a sticker from a PC repair company.


I plan to upgrade the old guy a bit, I already went through this forum and gathered some info already.

I already ordered a Mini PCI Wifi Card (yep I know about the No1082 hack), for now I use a USB Wifi dongle on the 1.1, works ok but that's not very convenient.

I'd want to upgrade the ram but I'm not sure about what I read here: is the limit 1g or 2g ?

How about a CPU upgrade ? I read on an old post that it would be possible to upgrade for a better P4M, is it true ?

Last but not least, I need 2.0 USB, soooo ... PCMCIA ? Which one should I use ? Which size ? For PCMCIA with external power supply, where could/should I wire the cars from "inside" the laptop ?

I'll update this post when further upgrades inc...

Thanks in advance

Fosco

brchan
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Re: [T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop

#2 Post by brchan » Tue Dec 22, 2015 9:31 pm

Max ram is 2gb. PC2100, PC3200, or PC2700 ram will work, but all will default to PC2100 speeds.

You can upgrade the processor up to a 2.6Ghz P4M SL6WZ cpu. However, I wouldn't go past 2.0Ghz (even with the upgraded heatsink) because your laptop will turn into a blowtorch :lol: . Even if you use the fastest processor, these are still pentium 4 chips which are far slower than the later pentium m found in the T4* models. Running modern apps or browsing the internet will still be slow.

Additionally, check the ram slots on the laptop by swapping the ram sticks into each slot. T30 and A31 models are known to have loose soldering on ram slots.
Current Thinkpads: W530 (functional classic keyboard mod), X301, T61, T60, T43, A31p, T23, 600X, 770
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Fosco
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Re: [T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop

#3 Post by Fosco » Fri Dec 25, 2015 1:52 pm

brchan wrote:Max ram is 2gb. PC2100, PC3200, or PC2700 ram will work, but all will default to PC2100 speeds.
Ok nice, yep I knew about the 2100 capped MB. Good to know for the 2gb. I'm gonna have to "dig" in my cardboards to find some ram.
brchan wrote: Additionally, check the ram slots on the laptop by swapping the ram sticks into each slot. T30 and A31 models are known to have loose soldering on ram slots.
Yep I saw the thread about this, I think I'll do the ram swap with computer hot to "ease" the process (hopefully ?).

Just for my personnal purpose, does this ram pins soldering issue comes from "playing" with a ram slot or does it break randomly/because of shocks/vibrations, etc?
brchan wrote:You can upgrade the processor up to a 2.6Ghz P4M SL6WZ cpu. However, I wouldn't go past 2.0Ghz (even with the upgraded heatsink) because your laptop will turn into a blowtorch :lol:
Ok that's good to know. However I feel surprised the heatsink doesn't do the job, I got amazed about how "not-that-much-of-a-bbq" was the side of the laptop when using it so I felt like a bigger P4M could be handled by the heatsink (does the heat curve even matches the power curve when upgrading ?)
brchan wrote:Even if you use the fastest processor, these are still pentium 4 chips which are far slower than the later pentium m found in the T4* models. Running modern apps or browsing the internet will still be slow.
Let's be honest, I don't expect my T30 to run flawlessly in chrome with multiple tabs, smooth 1080p videos and so ...

I don't use it for other stuff than browsing internet, sometimes low def YouTube videos aswell and running some car diagnostic softwares so it's already enough for me. For other stuff I have my job's laptop and my PC at home so the T30 is only here for beeing tough, nice looking and an enhanced platform for browsing internet (rather than my smartphone) when away from home.

I just plan to gain the little more I can gain without breaking my wallet. :wink:

Fosco
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Re: [T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop

#4 Post by Fosco » Sat Dec 26, 2015 6:58 pm

Image

Seems fine to me (if it's accurate). I used it for like 1.5 hours while HWMonitor was open, so Min/Max should be fine.


About PCMCIA, even if I'm used to old computers, I never had an "old" laptop so I don't know how does this is really supposed to work :
- How is the power supply for an USB one ? Am I going to be using a limited amount of intensity unless I plug an external wire from a "classic" 1.1 USB ?
- What are the specs of the PCMCIA USB Cardbus should I be aiming for ? (I'm not searching for a link, but more for "keywords", a part from "USB 2.0" :mrgreen: ).

Thanks in advance,

I'll try to clean up my T30 in order to post a nice picture of it. :wink:

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Re: [T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop *PIC*

#5 Post by danikayser84 » Mon Dec 28, 2015 5:26 pm

I use a generic Taiwanese/Hong Kong flush-mount USB 2.0 card which can be found on eBay for about $5 or so on my T30, T23 and X41, does the job well (it uses a standard NEC chipset which is supported with standard drivers on 2000/XP/Vista/7) ;) No dongle to lose and it doesn't stick out of the side of the laptop
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Re: [T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop *PIC*

#6 Post by RealBlackStuff » Tue Dec 29, 2015 6:35 am

Lovely day for a Guinness! (The Real Black Stuff)

Check out The Boardroom for Parts, Mods and Other Services.

Fosco
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Re: [T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop *PIC*

#7 Post by Fosco » Tue Dec 29, 2015 3:43 pm

Thanks ! That's what I was aiming for 8)
PCMCIA Type II slot
I wasn't confident about this :oops:

Just to be sure : with this type of card, I have to plug a power cable "if I want so" ? As long as my power consumption remains under 100mA/~1W per port, obviously.

I'm gonna use it for flash USB key and/(mostly)or simple cable so I guess that'll be enough ...

Thanks again ! :D

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Re: [T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop *PIC*

#8 Post by RealBlackStuff » Tue Dec 29, 2015 3:56 pm

No adapter needed as long as you use no more than 500mA per port.

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Re: [T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop *PIC*

#9 Post by thomase13 » Tue Dec 29, 2015 9:11 pm

I just have to say, Windows XP in Classic mode with ineXPerience and K-Meleon for a Web browser does wonders for these older machines!
K-Meleon 76 Beta 3 is the latest (mostly) stable version.

Good luck with your new ThinkPad! :)

Fosco
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Re: [T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop *PIC*

#10 Post by Fosco » Wed Dec 30, 2015 4:12 pm

Thanks for the links, I didn't know IneXPerience, that's interesting.

About the browser, I considered many times to change for a lighter one (like K-meleon) but for many reasons I have to stick with the yummy Chrome (tabs/history sharing from Smartphone to ThinkPad to PC) :oops:

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Re: [T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop *PIC*

#11 Post by thomase13 » Thu Dec 31, 2015 1:50 pm

You're welcome!

Yeah I guess if you have an android phone it would be great to have continuity between computer and phone browsing. I've tried to do the same — it'd be great to have the favorites on both, but I use a BlackBerry so I couldn't get that if I wanted to! XD

Fosco
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Re: [T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop *PIC*

#12 Post by Fosco » Wed May 10, 2017 9:07 am

Hey guys !

Quick update on this old guy, still doing its job, browsing forums, car diags and stuff, it's been travelling with me all around the country.

Fun fact, a friend gave me a crappy Toshiba laptop with newer hardware (SSD, i3 & such) and I almost considered replacing my trustworthy T30 with this one. So on my last 2 weeks long trip I brought both the Toshiba crap & the T30 ... Good thing I brought both of them :lol:

The Toshiba couldn't endure a week of what the T30's been doing for almost 2 years : the mainboard broke (it somehow cracked I think, some solders blew on GPU).

I'm taking care of my stuff but I guess intensive use, being messed around, spending nights in the trunk of my car, being moved from places to places while powered on, sitting on "non-flat" surfaces and such led me to realize how tough are those T30 8)


Just on a side note, since 6 months it's doing some kind of a "meep" while running every once in a while. Like not a concrete "beep" like if I was plugging the adapter or when it's booting, but just a shy "meep", even when it's sitting doing nothing on desktop ... Never figured what could cause that but so far it seems to be ok.

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Re: [T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop *PIC*

#13 Post by ac12 » Mon May 15, 2017 6:06 pm

If the SSD from the Toshiba is a PATA drive, I would move it into the T30.
Alternatively, get a mSATA SSD and a mSATA to PATA adapter. I have this setup in my T23.

The SSD will increase the performance and decrease battery drain. And the SSD will be cooler inside than the spinning HD, so less heat for the computer to get rid of. And unlike a spinning HD, the SSD is immune to shock when running, cuz no moving parts.

It is hard to give up on an old Thinkpad. I want to keep it going, way past its prime.

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Re: [T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop *PIC*

#14 Post by Fosco » Tue May 23, 2017 3:13 pm

Interesting, have you bench'd this setup to figure what was the rate writing/reading ?

I'm really curious to see the results. I'd consider doing this aswell since I have some SSD laying around ...


Aaaand I broke a RAM slot :(

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Re: [T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop *PIC*

#15 Post by kfzhu1229 » Tue May 23, 2017 6:21 pm

T30 is prone to that problem unfortunately. Just like how most A3x is prone to GPU defects. I guess your temporary solution is to stick some sponge between the slot holder plastic and the door to hopefully make it work again
_________________________________
T23 PIII 1.13ghz 1gb W7
2xT43 14.1" 2.26 SXGA+ 2gb 1*fp W10
T530i 15.6" i7 16gb fp W10
Flexview UXGA:
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T43p 2.26 2gb fp W10

Fosco
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Re: [T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop *PIC*

#16 Post by Fosco » Wed May 24, 2017 4:50 pm

I've been searching with a zooming thing (can't recall how its called) for any broken solder or so, couldn't find any defect. I'll try with a soft kind of wedge then, thanks.

The old guy is kinda slower with 512/1024 mb, thats too bad :(

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Re: [T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop *PIC*

#17 Post by kfzhu1229 » Wed May 24, 2017 5:47 pm

Fosco wrote:
Wed May 24, 2017 4:50 pm
The old guy is kinda slower with 512/1024 mb, thats too bad :(
You don't have to be stuck with 512mb for a single slot. Every DDR1 T series ThinkPad takes 1gb ram in every slot regardless of their official Max limit. But still, try to get the other slot to work (at least a bit longer) by putting sponges. You got this
_________________________________
T23 PIII 1.13ghz 1gb W7
2xT43 14.1" 2.26 SXGA+ 2gb 1*fp W10
T530i 15.6" i7 16gb fp W10
Flexview UXGA:
A30p PIII 1.2 1gb W7 (IDTech)
T43p 2.26 2gb fp W10

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Re: [T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop *PIC*

#18 Post by Fosco » Thu May 25, 2017 4:38 pm

Thanks for the reply ! :D

I'll have to dig in my stocks to check out if I have some 1g laying around then.

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Re: [T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop *PIC*

#19 Post by Fosco » Fri May 26, 2017 12:51 pm

kfzhu1229 wrote:
Wed May 24, 2017 5:47 pm
But still, try to get the other slot to work (at least a bit longer) by putting sponges. You got this
I got this, it worked ! Thanks for the advice !

Image

:bow:

I used some kind of spongy foam made for high temperatures (like very hot water pipes in hospitals or so), cutted in a small slice, it went like a glove ! :banana:

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Re: [T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop *PIC*

#20 Post by kfzhu1229 » Fri May 26, 2017 6:11 pm

Fosco wrote:
Fri May 26, 2017 12:51 pm
I got this, it worked ! Thanks for the advice !
Yay you got it to work! Well I guess the next things for you to do are:
1. Try NOT to move the machine often (if the slot fails again, the chance of getting it back to life again is not as much and you may even get both slots to fail thus trashing your computer if not careful)
2. Get some 1GB sticks just in case if the slot fails again (There isn't dual channel support in DDR anyways so the experience won't matter)
3. If you really want this to work forever like that, try leaving it on for rest of its life to minimize power cycling
Trust me we all know those hiccups about the ThinkPads around that era. I am dealing with A30p which is prone to GPU desoldering and I can't do #1 and #3 above because I carry it around my house for speakers and always run it on battery. I already saw A30 motherboard with GPU defects and A31p motherboard with capacitor or southbridge failure so I am pretty scared of it. My solution is to take a thermal sponge from that A31p and tuck it in between the heatsink and the GPU die hopefully it absorbs most of the heat and reduce the chance of that failure. At least I am positive of the GPU temperature being lowered because I no longer feel the heat if I touch the top portion of the base. Even after 720p movie playback it is not hot but only warm to the touch.
_________________________________
T23 PIII 1.13ghz 1gb W7
2xT43 14.1" 2.26 SXGA+ 2gb 1*fp W10
T530i 15.6" i7 16gb fp W10
Flexview UXGA:
A30p PIII 1.2 1gb W7 (IDTech)
T43p 2.26 2gb fp W10

Fosco
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Re: [T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop *PIC*

#21 Post by Fosco » Sat May 27, 2017 12:34 am

Well same here, unfortunately it has to move. A lot.

I'm being easy on it tho, I'll try to do even smoother "landings" to prevent the other slot from fail.

Feels bad about your A30p. That's somehow even worse than my case.

Hopefully your "trick" will work, fingers crossed for you.

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Re: [T30] New (but late) owner of this great laptop *PIC*

#22 Post by kfzhu1229 » Sat May 27, 2017 1:40 am

Hmm good luck with your T30 then!
A little correction: you don't have to be sad for mine, my A30p motherboard is flawless, it's just I saw a dead A30 and A31p motherboard so I'm scared of it taking place in my motherboard, therefore I put some thermal sponge to absorb the heat into the heatsink and keep problems away hopefully. :lol: :lol:
_________________________________
T23 PIII 1.13ghz 1gb W7
2xT43 14.1" 2.26 SXGA+ 2gb 1*fp W10
T530i 15.6" i7 16gb fp W10
Flexview UXGA:
A30p PIII 1.2 1gb W7 (IDTech)
T43p 2.26 2gb fp W10

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