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R50e still kicking

R, A, G and Z series specific matters only. NOT for AMD-Ryzen.
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xelonakias
Posts: 19
Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2020 2:39 am
Location: Athens, Greece

R50e still kicking

#1 Post by xelonakias » Wed Oct 14, 2020 5:51 am

Hello, just to give a hint about longevity of the R50/ R51 series.
I bought a R50e in 2004 or 2005, a 1834 series with a M Pentium. It travelled extensively between France and Greece, was used in libraries, university, planes and cars. I have added a usb BT dongle, a cardbus usb2 add-on to give it two more usb ports. It has been used since 2009 mainly as a stable workstation for internet browsing, faxing, printing, scanning, and has been on with little to no shutdowns since 2011 next to our phone-fax spot and the 2350 canon maxify oldie (Yes we are old-fashioned, we even keep a phone book handwritten next to a cable-only, rotary, phone on the table).
Have been running it on win xp pro sp3 forever, with 1.5 gb of ram, last updates on.
It was tweaked so that the 60 GB HDD ATA is NOT used for memory allocation, and all memory demands for the system are handled by the RAM only. Of course this means it has become essentially a one-task machine.
A few keys have come off the keyboard, courtesy of young kids.
The DVD writer has lost its capacity for quality writing it is essentially a dvd/cd reader nowdays. Which helps a lot with our cd collection, and the logitech external usb speaker.
Somewhat difficult as far as zoom and skype are concerned nowdays, and I have to tune down the hercules 720p camera to 480p if I want to have a perfect flawless sound, but it still manages it.
Love the IBM logo on this Thinkpad. End of an era model, right?
Well, here's to milking a machine to the bitter (?) end.
Cheers

atagunov
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Re: R50e still kicking

#2 Post by atagunov » Wed Oct 14, 2020 7:15 am

xelonakias wrote:
Wed Oct 14, 2020 5:51 am
Love the IBM logo on this Thinkpad. End of an era model, right?
R50e - the end of IBM era

4:3 T61(p)/R61/T60Frankies/X61 - the end end of 3:4 era

X220-W520 (and by extension X230-W530) - the end of classic keyboard era
xelonakias wrote:
Wed Oct 14, 2020 5:51 am
Well, here's to milking a machine to the bitter (?) end.
Absolutely!
X220, 2 *T520

Screamer
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Re: R50e still kicking

#3 Post by Screamer » Wed Oct 14, 2020 1:56 pm

If you wish to 'milk' this machine further, why have you not considered any sort of major upgrade (even before the Coronavirus came)? Well, apart from the addition of a 1 GB RAM module.

I assume the DVD burner is on its way out? If so, why has it not been replaced earlier? They aren't that expensive, and the ThinkWiki has a lot of FRUs for you to pick.

xelonakias
Posts: 19
Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2020 2:39 am
Location: Athens, Greece

Re: R50e still kicking

#4 Post by xelonakias » Thu Oct 15, 2020 2:37 am

Screamer wrote:
Wed Oct 14, 2020 1:56 pm
If you wish to 'milk' this machine further, why have you not considered any sort of major upgrade (even before the Coronavirus came)? Well, apart from the addition of a 1 GB RAM module.

I assume the DVD burner is on its way out? If so, why has it not been replaced earlier? They aren't that expensive, and the ThinkWiki has a lot of FRUs for you to pick.
Well, it so happens that three years ago, I came upon a business that was closing for good (as you might have heard, Greece has been resilient to the coronavirus but not to the international financial crisis of 2008 which kept on going...) I was able to buy a few machines fully working, each for 10 euros piece.
So I have three more R50e with all of their paraphernalia including three 15" thinkpad travel cases, five thinkcenters keyboards screens mouses and all, paperwork, windows disks and licenses, driver disks, a few intel disks and a few printers-scanners-faxes. Needless to say, I have some space for stocking, and an understanding wife.

So I have a stock of devices to use for whatever I might decide upon. I can just swap one without taking the time to upgrade. I am at heart more a user than a tinkerer. My post was just meant to showcase the durability of the machine but I guess you already knew that. I might change the DVD burner eventually as you say, but it still has not been needed of late. Cheap usb keys have done the trick those past years.

Only upgrade I really did was to have a french cardbus PCMCIA giving e-sata connectivity so that I may use the entire bus speed for data backup should I ever feel constricted by usb-2 speeds. But this hasn't really been a problem. I have shared this card between many machines at will.

Screamer
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Re: R50e still kicking

#5 Post by Screamer » Thu Oct 15, 2020 8:51 am

That makes sense, although odd that you don't see a need to max it out.

Most that I've seen with old machines tend to upgrade them to their fullest potential, and not leave them in their factory/stock configuration.

Brian10161
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Re: R50e still kicking

#6 Post by Brian10161 » Sat Nov 07, 2020 7:58 pm

Pretty cool to hear how long some of these machines go for. I still have a T410s kicking around, with original SSD (ableit, on its way out).

I had a T60 and I absolutely loved that machine. I had the t2400 chip with 2gb of ram and a CD burner/DVD Reader in it and the 9 cell battery. Absolute tank of a machine. It became my desktop replacement with an external LCD screen plus the built in. Eventually got a T410 and moved on from the T60. I used the T410 for some 5 years then upgraded to my current T450s. I should see about getting a T60 again, not sure where my old one ended up, I kind of remember selling it on here to be honest. Still possibly my favorite memories are using a T60 with Windows XP and just playing some Doom with my friends.
Thinkpad T450s - i5-5300u, 12gb, 512gb ssd, 1600x900, Windows 8.1/Ubuntu

kfzhu1229
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Re: R50e still kicking

#7 Post by kfzhu1229 » Sun Nov 08, 2020 12:41 am

Brian10161 wrote:
Sat Nov 07, 2020 7:58 pm
Pretty cool to hear how long some of these machines go for. I still have a T410s kicking around, with original SSD (ableit, on its way out).
Well my typical expectation of the lifespan of a typical mainstream business class laptop such as a ThinkPad, Latitude or Elitebook is that short of the models affected by obvious design flaws, they should last minimum 10 years if not 15 years. With proper maintenance and care and a few replacement parts, it should last 20+ years, however by that point don't expect the reliability to be as good as new obviously.
Brian10161 wrote:
Sat Nov 07, 2020 7:58 pm
I should see about getting a T60 again, not sure where my old one ended up, I kind of remember selling it on here to be honest.
If you live in Canada as suggested, maybe have a look on Kijiji and see if you see good deals for T60 up there.
Dell Lat CP MMX-233 64mb 40gb W2k
600 PII-266 416mb 40gb WXP
T23 PIII 1.13ghz 1gb W7
Precision M4300 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)

Brian10161
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Re: R50e still kicking

#8 Post by Brian10161 » Sun Nov 08, 2020 8:15 am

kfzhu1229 wrote:
Sun Nov 08, 2020 12:41 am
If you live in Canada as suggested, maybe have a look on Kijiji and see if you see good deals for T60 up there.
I have checked on there and it astounds me the prices some people want for these older laptops. They are asking 250 for a T60 not far from me in Woodstock. I originally paid 100 for the T60 I had and that was probably 10 years ago when it was still relatively recent!

I'll keep my eyes open though, somethings bound to show up eventually.
Thinkpad T450s - i5-5300u, 12gb, 512gb ssd, 1600x900, Windows 8.1/Ubuntu

dr_st
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Re: R50e still kicking

#9 Post by dr_st » Sun Nov 08, 2020 8:39 am

My neighbor bought a R50e a little over 15 years ago. Around the time I got myself the T42.

Sure the R50e does not quite emanate that air of snobbishness as a high-end T-series, but, man, you could kill home invaders with that machine.
Thinkpad 25 (20K7), T490 (20N3), Yoga 14 (20FY), T430s (IPS FHD + Classic Keyboard), X220 4291-4BG
X61 7673-V2V, T60 2007-QPG, T42 2373-F7G, X32 (IPS Screen), A31p w/ Ultrabay Numpad, A21m 2628-GXU

kfzhu1229
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Re: R50e still kicking

#10 Post by kfzhu1229 » Sun Nov 08, 2020 12:44 pm

Brian10161 wrote:
Sun Nov 08, 2020 8:15 am
I have checked on there and it astounds me the prices some people want for these older laptops. They are asking 250 for a T60 not far from me in Woodstock. I originally paid 100 for the T60 I had and that was probably 10 years ago when it was still relatively recent!
Oh you live in a remote area in Ontario, then yeah that makes sense.
I did notice this ad in Toronto though. It was a pretty good deal but now it's gone sadly:
https://www.kijiji.ca/v-laptops/city-of ... 1532183226
That said though I still think $40 for a base model T60 isn't best deal in terms of what it gives you. I've found 14.1" T4x for the cost of ewaste before.
And well I value T4x at a higher cost because a ThinkPad T43 is what i've used for like 8-9 years before the GPU soldering failed 1.5 years ago.
dr_st wrote:
Sun Nov 08, 2020 8:39 am
Sure the R50e does not quite emanate that air of snobbishness as a high-end T-series, but, man, you could kill home invaders with that machine.
I've had a R51 before and gotta say even though the plastics don't feel as good as T4x, they are miles better in terms of rigidity, which is something that I've complained about for T4x. Somehow even with that bigger chassis the speakers are inferior to 15" T4x. Those sound like T2x and give a nasty distortion when the volume is too high.
Dell Lat CP MMX-233 64mb 40gb W2k
600 PII-266 416mb 40gb WXP
T23 PIII 1.13ghz 1gb W7
Precision M4300 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)

Hacker117
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed Sep 18, 2019 11:31 pm
Location: Milton, Canada

Re: R50e still kicking

#11 Post by Hacker117 » Tue Dec 22, 2020 9:52 pm

xelonakias wrote:
Wed Oct 14, 2020 5:51 am
Hello, just to give a hint about longevity of the R50/ R51 series.
I bought a R50e in 2004 or 2005, a 1834 series with a M Pentium. It travelled extensively between France and Greece, was used in libraries, university, planes and cars. I have added a usb BT dongle, a cardbus usb2 add-on to give it two more usb ports. It has been used since 2009 mainly as a stable workstation for internet browsing, faxing, printing, scanning, and has been on with little to no shutdowns since 2011 next to our phone-fax spot and the 2350 canon maxify oldie (Yes we are old-fashioned, we even keep a phone book handwritten next to a cable-only, rotary, phone on the table).
Have been running it on win xp pro sp3 forever, with 1.5 gb of ram, last updates on.
It was tweaked so that the 60 GB HDD ATA is NOT used for memory allocation, and all memory demands for the system are handled by the RAM only. Of course this means it has become essentially a one-task machine.
A few keys have come off the keyboard, courtesy of young kids.
The DVD writer has lost its capacity for quality writing it is essentially a dvd/cd reader nowdays. Which helps a lot with our cd collection, and the logitech external usb speaker.
Somewhat difficult as far as zoom and skype are concerned nowdays, and I have to tune down the hercules 720p camera to 480p if I want to have a perfect flawless sound, but it still manages it.
Love the IBM logo on this Thinkpad. End of an era model, right?
Well, here's to milking a machine to the bitter (?) end.
Cheers
... congrats
Not many of the old IBM ThinkPad laptop war horses still in active service.
Mine is a G40 (80 GB pata HDD, 3GHz P4 single core CPU, 2GB RAM) which sold for $3K when new in 2004 that is still in immaculate condition.
A d-link (g,n) PCMCIA wifi card miraculously works very well with the antiX 32 bit O/S and it still renders webpages at an acceptable speed.
If it does quit (no signs yet) there will be about 3 pounds of copper in that old machine to salvage ... it’s HEAVY.

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