Showing posts from April, 2005

ATX Panel Cut

After my troubles with cutting the aluminium, I went out and got a got a little set of Dremel cuttoff wheels. I went through about 5 of them, but I was finally able to cut out the hole for the back panel of the motherboard: I'll need to repaint the back panel to help clean it up, but it looks ok right now. I've tried setting an adapter card into the board, and I've found that the board is sitting a bit higher up than I had originally thought. So now the adapter cards don't fit into the case any more. I'm not sure how I'm going to solve this right now.

Issues with cutting

I had a little trouble cutting the slots for the tabs that are on the bottom of adapter cards today. I burnt up a Dremel cutting bit, and broke a drill bit trying to get through the bottom of the enclosure. I remember reading something about "cutting oil", so I might need to get some of that when I get a new Dremel bit for cutting. I'll do some more looking around to see what others are doing. I did find a power supply that might work for me. It's made for a 2U rackmount server, but it has the proper dimensions to fit next to the mother board. My only concern is going to be noise. I'm guessing that since it goes into a server, it is going to be loud. I'll keep looking, but it is encouraging to find something with the right dimensions. I also stumbled across the ATI All-in-wonder X800 XT . Seems like the perfect card, but I'm going to have to make sure it works with whatever OS I'm going to go with. Speaking of OS, I'm thinking about going

Minor modifications, and holes tapped

Today, I made a little more progress on the HTPC. I had to cut some bulges out of the bottom of the enclosure to clear the ATX motherboard I am using in this project. Here's a shot of that: I tapped a few holes to put in the motherboard stand-offs to have something to mount the motherboard to. I had to do a little more hacking to get the motherboard mounted properly since the bottom of the enclosure is uneven. I used two plastic stand-offs that I cannibalized from the old DVD player, and I had to use some washers to move up one of the stand-offs. Otherwise, the motherboard went right in. I made sure to allow room for the adapter cards to fit. I'll need to cut some slot holes into the bottom of the enclosure to actually allow the tabs to go through the bottom. Here's a shot of the motherboard mounted for testing the fit: So far so good, the hard part is going to be getting a DVD drive, a power supply, and a disk or two into the beast. I'm thinking about a slim-l


Boy, it seems like everyone is doing one of these Home Theater Personal Computer projects now. I've been thinking about it for a while, and only recently have the accumulated spare parts from other projects reached a point where I might actually attempt this. I'm going to try and keep a log of my progress on this project. We used to have an old Panasonic DVD-CV50 that was attached to our television that served as our DVD/CD player. It had a 5 disc changer that was nice to have back before the days of MP3s. About a year ago, we had to replace it with another player since it no longer seemed to want to reliably play DVDs. But I kept it around thinking that it might be the perfect case for a HTPC. Recently, the power supply on my current system went out, but I ended up getting a new motherboard, processor and quiet power supply. However, the old stuff was still quite functional, so I kept it for future projects. The final piece that fell into place for me was time since I

My Life v4.0

Today begins the first day of the rest of my life, as it is said. My final day of contracting with my previous company was last Friday, and I'm now officially unemployed. Not being at work during the week always feels a bit like playing hooky to me. There's plenty to do, so it isn't like I'm slacking off, but I can't help feeling like I'm doing something wrong by not being at "work". I finished up my taxes last week using a popular tax tool. Should be getting a nice refund which is partially going to be spent on a new washer and dryer. Therese is really going to enjoy having a front loading washing machine with a larger capacity than my old set from my previous existence as a bachelor, and I'll enjoy not having wet blue jeans from a dryer which seems to be taking a bit of a vacation lately. I took a look at trying to get a cell phone this weekend, but too many issues kept me from doing it. First, the local T-Mobile store didn't have the Motorol

T-6 Hours to leaving LeasePlan

I'm finding it harder and harder to focus on work. I really need to finish up some things for the Spec Enhancement project, but all I can think about right now is the people I'm going to miss working with at LeasePlan. In fact as I was writing this, Donald Higgs, one of our switchboard operators, stopped by with a really touching card for me. I'm really going to miss the people here, and I hope that I can stay in contact with some of them at least. On a more mundane note, I'm also trying to figure out what I'm going to do about a cell phone. My old one is LeasePlan's so I've got to find a new one. It was an old Motorola P280 phone and, with almost divine prescience of my imminent departure, the phone stopped working last night. I'm looking at a Motorola V600 to replace it, since that has BlueTooth (which will work well with my Palm Tungsten T3), and it is a quad-band world phone. My problem is that JBoss (my new employer) will pay for the plan if it is w

T-1 Day to Leaving LeasePlan

I'm leaving the company I've worked at for almost 11 years. I've got lots of mixed feelings about leaving, but I'm sure it is the right thing for myself and my family. I've worn a lot of hats and learned quite a lot, but I think it is time for a change. I'm going to work for JBoss, Inc. in Atlanta, GA. It is a bit more of a commute for me, but I think the work will be very rewarding. Also, the compensation/benefits are much better that I had at my old employer. I'm going to miss everyone I worked with there, but hopefully the people that want to stay in contact with me will. I'm going to try and do a better job about keeping this up to date, but who knows... Ok, enough for now. Must do a build!