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Please help me with 2 Thinkpads-both T400- to assess and upgrade

T400/T410/T420 and T500/T510/T520 series specific matters only
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2020
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Joined: Thu May 14, 2020 7:32 am
Location: London, GB

Please help me with 2 Thinkpads-both T400- to assess and upgrade

#1 Post by 2020 » Thu May 14, 2020 8:47 am

Hi there,

I have two Thinkpad T400 devices and want to simultaneously upgrade them as economically as possible.

Apologies in advance for not being too tech/thinkpad savvy, that's why i'd greatly appreciate as much help as possible

I'd like to upgrade the speed and storage and even the screen if possible, i've read on the forum about getting 2x 4gb ram for a thinkpad as this is the most supported although i don't know how to check the /os of the computers (or how to upgrade that if needed), as that size ram may only go into a 64bit OS - I think ??!!

The first one which i'll call Thinkpad 1 is the one i've had longest for about 5 years and bought it second-hand in a computer/laptop repair and retail store in London and it didn't have an original windows on it, i intended to get one soon after but to be honest i haven't used it much apart from backing up my phone data on there every few months and some general searches, i usually used other peoples laptops and kept mine as a reserve, plus it didn't give problems apart from pressing cancel when the window popped up asking me to upgrade windows ( which i've never done before or know how or how much or the legalities or options )

Now i intend to start a company and will need to have reliable machines for myself and employees, as i stated in the subject i'd like help assessing what they comprise of internally and then purchase a few bits online (probably ebay, amazon etc)

What i know of the two Thinkpads:

Thinkpad 1:

T400
- no built in webcam

- started moving slow, like really slow at times to start up or just navigate, never used to do that ( i assume because i have loads of pics on it now and some vids as i've backed up several phones on it )

-CD drive has symbols on it saying: DVD - Multi Recorder - CD-RW

- the USB slot closest to the switch that releases the screen to open up just has the four metal strips and is missing the block that it's supposed to have and that the USB stick also has. This is not major and USB's might still work on it if i'm careful, but i can always get a multi-usb adaptor if i need as i was planning on getting a monitor and using usb powered keyboard and mouse i have. ( I wonder if i can connect two or more laptops to provide power and speed to one monitor )(silly curiosity :? sorry)


Thinkpad 2:

T400
- has an in-built webcam

-has been wiped or formatted i think, as i recently purchased it from ebay.

-has windows 10

-has German keyboard and is in German when i switch on

-CD drive area doesn't have anything in it



What i'd like :

I'd love to know what these machines are capable of (all these slots excite me lol) but probably i mainly need a new Harddrive and/or the other dss?! option i think it's called.

possibly backup drive and ram and maybe keyboard or two coz Thinkpad 1 has a sticky resistance on a couple buttons below the enter button when i spilled alcohol on it a few years back :oops: :roll:

I'd also like to have the option to use or burn CD's or DVD's but speed and space are priority too- please advise on cheap places to purchase the relevant parts

i have bought a portable 2TB seagate backup drive recently just in case ( if that helps )

and the matt on the case of Thinkpad 2 is really bad and would like to clean or replace but that's secondary, also it's missing the lower right grip for setting the laptop down :roll:

Also wondering why one has a webcam and one doesn't.

Also i've read there isn't much you can do for these screens but you never know.

With any reply please be as specific and detailed as possible as i am not that technically versed with IT or Thinkpads but love a project and DIY plus can't afford to splash out too much on the parts but all recommendations are welcome.

I have researched these things to my semi-best ability on google and youtube so now i need to get it done

I thank you all in advance and will be checking this post very regularly for guidance on checking what specific machines i have and what they contain plus the best things i can get for them in my case as explained above.

Many many thanks :)

MikalE
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Re: Please help me with 2 Thinkpads-both T400- to assess and upgrade

#2 Post by MikalE » Thu May 14, 2020 12:55 pm

Please let me know if you decide to swap the Deutsche keyboard on the one T400. I need one for my T500.

I'd have to check on postage though if you decide this. I know it won't be cheap.
A31p P-IV 2Ghz, 2MB, 2653-R6U
T500 T9600 2055-BE9
T510 i5 4384-DV7
T510 i7 4349-A64
T520 i7QM 4242-4UU Highly Modified

2020
Posts: 4
Joined: Thu May 14, 2020 7:32 am
Location: London, GB

Re: Please help me with 2 Thinkpads-both T400- to assess and upgrade

#3 Post by 2020 » Thu May 14, 2020 6:12 pm

Hi MikalE,

If you're suggesting i send you my Deutsche t400 keyboard in exchange for your english t400 keyboard then yes i'm happy to do that.

kfzhu1229
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Re: Please help me with 2 Thinkpads-both T400- to assess and upgrade

#4 Post by kfzhu1229 » Thu May 14, 2020 7:34 pm

2020 wrote:
Thu May 14, 2020 8:47 am
possibly backup drive and ram and maybe keyboard or two coz Thinkpad 1 has a sticky resistance on a couple buttons below the enter button when i spilled alcohol on it a few years back :oops: :roll:
Did you try carefully taking the keycaps out and clean the rubber dome and its surroundings with "real" alcohol, and then see if the stickiness is gone? (And if you have a metal stabiliser like on the Shift and Enter keys, you need to put some lubricant on that metal bracket)
Dell Lat CP MMX-233 64mb 40gb W2k
600 PII-266 416mb 40gb WXP
T23 PIII 1.13ghz 1gb W7
Lat D830 X9000 8gb 160gb WUXGA Ultrasharp fp W10
T530i 15.6" i7 16gb fp W10
UXGA:
A30p PIII 1.2 1gb W7 (IDTech)
T43p 2.26 2gb fp W10 (Sharp)
Lat C840 P4-2.5 2gb 60gb W7 (Ultrasharp)

2020
Posts: 4
Joined: Thu May 14, 2020 7:32 am
Location: London, GB

Re: Please help me with 2 Thinkpads-both T400- to assess and upgrade

#5 Post by 2020 » Thu May 14, 2020 8:38 pm

Thank you for that to person from post number 4, I assume you're suggesting i pry out the relevant keys manually (& carefully)

kfzhu1229
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Re: Please help me with 2 Thinkpads-both T400- to assess and upgrade

#6 Post by kfzhu1229 » Thu May 14, 2020 9:40 pm

2020 wrote:
Thu May 14, 2020 8:38 pm
Thank you for that to person from post number 4, I assume you're suggesting i pry out the relevant keys manually (& carefully)
Yeah that is what I meant. Grab it from the left or right side of the key, lift it up while also gently holding down the other side (don't press too hard otherwise you will break the keycap in half) until you hear the keycap clips unclicks from that side. Then for the longer keys, work your way from the bottom to the other side and note the metal bracket underneath the key. For the short square keys, just continue prying from the same side until the key comes off. Don't be surprised to see all sorts of nastiness underneath and spider web like hair even if the user isn't a female.
I know this can be really tricky for first timers, but here I have tried to record when I pry off the keycaps off a T520 and put it back which has very similar keyboard as a T400 I assume.
https://1drv.ms/u/s!At7-rt1KJ7WviPhlBE0 ... Q?e=8rG4ZQ
Note that it looks like as if I am using a lot of force but I really did not.
Dell Lat CP MMX-233 64mb 40gb W2k
600 PII-266 416mb 40gb WXP
T23 PIII 1.13ghz 1gb W7
Lat D830 X9000 8gb 160gb WUXGA Ultrasharp fp W10
T530i 15.6" i7 16gb fp W10
UXGA:
A30p PIII 1.2 1gb W7 (IDTech)
T43p 2.26 2gb fp W10 (Sharp)
Lat C840 P4-2.5 2gb 60gb W7 (Ultrasharp)

TonyJZX
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Re: Please help me with 2 Thinkpads-both T400- to assess and upgrade

#7 Post by TonyJZX » Fri May 15, 2020 7:17 am

I personally wouldnt bother spending good money over bad. We dont know what your intention is as far as o/s goes?

You'd do well to find the type number off the laptops so we can at least look them up and see where you can go.

The type number on the bottom is something like eg. 6473-TBM

P8400(2.26GHz), 2GB RAM, 160GB 5400rpm HD, 14.1in 1280x800 LCD, Intel X4500HD, CDRW/DVDRW, Intel 802.11agn wireless, Bluetooth, Modem, 1Gb Ethernet, UltraNav, Secure chip, Fingerprint reader, 4c Li-Ion, WinVista Business 32

I wouldnt bother with screens. Just use a VGA monitor.

Install 4gb of ram, install a cheap ssd, install middleton bios, install win10 and it'll authenticate for free.

Clean up minor cosmetics, ie. replace missing cdrom with hdd bezel for a few bucks. Batteries will be a dead loss as any genuine ones will be terrible and clones are rubbish. Run off an adapter.

Some versions of the T400 will not take WIn10 without changing the dual video to intel only.

I assume as a business you want to use win10 rather than win7.

If you wanted to install linux you dont need our help!

TonyJZX
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Re: Please help me with 2 Thinkpads-both T400- to assess and upgrade

#8 Post by TonyJZX » Fri May 15, 2020 7:18 am


RealBlackStuff
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Re: Please help me with 2 Thinkpads-both T400- to assess and upgrade

#9 Post by RealBlackStuff » Fri May 15, 2020 7:38 am

Middleton did not mod any BIOS for T400.
And Windows 10 does not officially support T400.
See also this post: T400 and Windows 10: My experience

I wouldn't waste time and money on something that old, especially since you state:
Now i intend to start a company and will need to have reliable machines for myself and employees
Look for some a bit newer.
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2020
Posts: 4
Joined: Thu May 14, 2020 7:32 am
Location: London, GB

Re: Please help me with 2 Thinkpads-both T400- to assess and upgrade

#10 Post by 2020 » Fri May 15, 2020 8:56 am

Thank you to post number 6, your explanation along with videos were helpful and reassuring.

I proceeded to take a couple of the keys out (the right arrow key and one above it) but the white bit it clips to came out with one of them so i panicked a bit and thought to reattach it once i buy some pure alcohol like you recommended (it is quite dirty underneath ) i'll only clean the ones i deem necessary, only a few to do. Otherwise i'll buy a new keyboard one day if i've damaged it too much. Thanks again

Thanks for that info Tony, I can tell you Thinkpad 1 is Type 6475 - WJE and Thinkpad 2 is Type 6473 - 14G and Thinkpad 2 also came with following description when purchased:

The following accessories are available for the notebook:
- Power supply and battery, no software included!

Data :
Intel Core 2 Duo P8700 (2x 2.53 GHz)
35.8cm 14.1 "TFT display
1280x800 (WXGA)
4 GB DDR3 (2x 2 GB)
250GB SATA 5400
Windows 10 PRO - 64bit (activated)
without DVD drive


Can i ask, is 4gb RAM good enough for storage/speed as opposed to getting 8gb (2x4gb) also sorry i don't know how much ram is in Thinkpad 1

Also which cheap ssd should i get because i'm seeing prices vary for the sizes, i'm looking at 120gb or 240gb but there are smaller and larger ones, plus some are different models so not sure if any one will work on the t400 !

I've looked up middleton bios and doesn't seem to suggest t400 as compatible it's only showing other thinkpads like x61 x300 t61 r61

maybe the linux os is a bit complicated for me so i'll stick to windows for simplicity and yes windows 10 preferably ( what's dual video to intel and how do i know if Thinkpad 1 supports windows 10 as thinkpad 2 already has windows 10 on it)

my intention with os was just for speed etc but i now realise that i don't need anything that will become arduous for me as i'm not tech proficient if windows 10 is the os (sorry didn't know that's what it meant).

and to RealBlackStuff thanks for your input, unfortunately i have two laptops that i wouldn't want to waste especially since they have room for upgrading economically, my business practices will be basic office tasks, video / website creation and maintaining etc and when things pick up along with income and i'm going to use more sophisticated softwares/applications/devices to connect to/finance-data-related-sites/software and need more security and oversight over the router/intranet/server etc in my company then i will surely upgrade to more sophisticated devices

Tony do the types tell you now if they have the stuff on line four of your post ? plus what's free bsd 10 installation i saw on the thinkwki link you provided? thanks

I'll also be using a stone laptop i have (loaned) and will try to procure the necessary equipment when feasible and practical (loaning and purchasing more)

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