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~DOC~
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I am looking to buy two dedicated desktops for running both Halloween and Christmas. That way when I am done I hit play and it’s done. It’s done on a singular PC. No transfers. I  am tired of when I transfer from one PC to another inherently problems arise. I like using a PC. So directors are out of the question. What I am looking for is recommendations on what PC would be satisfying for both developing and playing the sequeances. Currently my I3 processor laptop from Walmart is doing just fine. Faster be a bonus but for the most part happy. On the other hand the desktop I transfer too is slow slow slow. So if a problem arises that need fixed. It’s click and wait. (5 to 10 minutes). Lucky no errors but I am waiting for it. Frustrating most just say this is the minimum required but for satisfaction we recommend this?

Edited by ~DOC~
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I have had good luck with off-lease Refurbed Dell Optiplex (business class) from Walmart.  👍

They have RAM, A new HD + SSD. My last was an i7-8G RAM , 1T HD and 512G SSD for under $400 (and Win Pro )

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1 minute ago, TheDucks said:

I have had good luck with off-lease Refurbed Dell Optiplex (business class) from Walmart.  👍

They have RAM, A new HD + SSD. My last was an i7-8G RAM , 1T HD and 512G SSD for under $400 (and Win Pro )

I was looking at them actually. This one had I7, 32 Ram, 1TB SSD. Down fall only windows 10 no upgrade to 11. With The LOR updates could find me in a problem. 

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32 minutes ago, ~DOC~ said:

I was looking at them actually. This one had I7, 32 Ram, 1TB SSD. Down fall only windows 10 no upgrade to 11. With The LOR updates could find me in a problem. 

Yep! My i7 is just below W11 threshold.   I think it will be a while before LOR jumps on W11 only features. There is jut to many out there with older hardware running their show.

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15 minutes ago, TheDucks said:

Yep! My i7 is just below W11 threshold.   I think it will be a while before LOR jumps on W11 only features. There is jut to many out there with older hardware running their show.

Yea I can get two of those Dells for 500 bucks. It be nice to just move keyboards and a mouse off to the side to change from one to the other.

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I have a Dell PC purchased with Windows 8 Home, and I run windows 8.1 x64, Windows 10 x32 & x64 , Window 11 x64 - it is used for developing and testing Windows Preinstallation Recovery Software...

And so far no issues running LOR Software in any of the OS's, nor have I found a high demand on Ram or I5 cpu

 

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When it comes to computers, I know a bit but not the total expert. You don't really need two separate computers for Halloween and Christmas. The software will handle both at the same time and you don't need to use anything else. Yes, think seriously about going to a Windows 11 machine but only because Windows 10 support ends in 2025. I'm of the mindset to provide the computer with all the good stuff to make its job easier. Fast SSD, best CPU you dare to afford, max out the ram if you can afford it and very important, insure there's plenty of cooling going on. Some high-end machines use liquid cooling and others just fans but regardless, make sure you get rid of the heat! Next and very important, the GPU(Graphics Processor). They can be cheap to extremely expensive so find something that will be good going forward in the years. A GPU card for use with multiple monitors is a good idea. Personally, I use four monitors therefore I can spread things out. Preview display on one, main sequencing on another, file manager, task manager and whatever all else you wish. A good, fast machine with a decent GPU, plenty of ram, will do wonders.

My current Windows 10 machines, are below the Windows 11 threshold as well so I'm going to have to build a new one come 2025. My current show computer is fairly high-end that I built with VR capability and it runs LOR easily. My now backup show machine is an older Dell T5500 but with dual Xeon CPUs, 72Gb Ram, its fast too. Currently my entire show, ready to play in 5.6.8 is on the older machine and the version 6.1 is on the newer machine, ready to run. To switch over in any emergency, one ethernet manual switch, one button on KVM swtich, two usb cables and I'm good to go. Being they are on the same house network, I back up to each other as needed.

Seriously though, you don't need fancy machines to run LOR but do plan for the future.

 

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I also agree that you shouldn't need two computers for Halloween and Christmas. You need to do all the work anyway (create/maintain previews, sequencing, etc) on two, you can just as easily do it on one. So you create to different shows and just enable/disable the show as needed. If you use consistent naming conventions for everything, you should have an easy time of it.

That being said, I like the refurbs from Micro Center. Fortunately I have one their few B&M stores close enough by, but I think it's worth checking them out. I bought my LOR dedicated desktop computer from them three seasons ago now, for $79. Although, I DID have to upgrade the video card to run LOR, but that was about $30. And since that's pretty much all I have on it, it's been great. And it has EIGHT (count 'em 8!) USB ports!  

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Absolutely no need for separate computers for Christmas vs Halloween.  I understand the issues with file transfers, but it's not that hard to deal with.  Just move everything in your LOR directory, and everything moves.  Granted you don't need to move everything, but that will get all that is needed...   With that said, I save everything on one computer that is always on and use Windows mapped network drives so that the other two computers are actually reading files from the one computer.  In my case the always on computer is a server, but it does not have to be; and in fact does not even need to be a computer - could be an external networked hard drive.  Whatever you do, make sure to backup your files to something - or more than one something.  Strong recommendation to keep at least one backup off-site (cloud or physically).

If you really want to go the dedicated computer route, I have bought every computer I currently use (except the server) either from the Dell Outlet or refurbs from TigerDirect.com.  Never had a problem with any of them.  Get a whole lot more computer that way.  Also, one of my standard recommendations is that unless you NEED a laptop, go for a desktop.  With a desktop, you get far more computer for the money, it is easier to upgrade or replace components, and easier to put multiple monitors (a huge advantage for sequencing).

 

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I was wondering about 'needing 2'? Was it because you wanted on to develop on while the show computer was located in a less handy place?

Those Optiplex tend to come with W10 PRO, which supports Remote desktop connection. The CLIENT is free and runs on many platforms (Just not the really old, like XP).

On a wired LAN, the speed difference  is hardly noticeable (but not for Gaming).  The Client basically turns you PC into a smart terminal. The Cool feature, is you can copy and paste between the 2 desktops. No more sneaker net.

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4 hours ago, dgrant said:

The software will handle both at the same time and you don't need to use anything else

I currently use my laptop to program and like you I have three monitors to spread it out. I use the dinosaur PC for the show. Over the last five season I always experience the same thing. I lose all my super star. Then odd ball stuff occurs during my transfer. I usually dump my whole LOR folder onto a USB stick delete the folder from my show PC and just install the new folder from my sequencing pc. For three years this worked almost flawless. Then I got this lap top and learned more about superstar and problems begun. I did this on one song recently that was 50% LOR and 50% Superstar. I lost everything superstar. I had to go and double click every superstar sequence and on the dinosaur. It’s click wait. Drove me nuts. So my thought was just have two PC one for Halloween and One for Christmas. While the Halloween show is running I could be working on the Christmas. Like you it would be disconnecting only a few cables to go from one PC to the other. 

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TexasLights

my show pc is an older one and gets the job done.  I use a free program called SyncBackFree to keep them in sync.  It provides 2 modes.   One to backup which I use to backup everything to an external drive automatically.  It also has a sync function that works great to keep the show pc in sync with my build system.  I run it manually with confirmation and it shows me everything I have changed.  Then it updates it across the network so I don't need to swap USB, etc. 

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6 minutes ago, TexasLights said:

my show pc is an older one and gets the job done.  I use a free program called SyncBackFree to keep them in sync.  It provides 2 modes.   One to backup which I use to backup everything to an external drive automatically.  It also has a sync function that works great to keep the show pc in sync with my build system.  I run it manually with confirmation and it shows me everything I have changed.  Then it updates it across the network so I don't need to swap USB, etc. 

my show PC is not wireless and not hooked to internet but once a year just to update. I really don’t want it on the network. 

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5 hours ago, k6ccc said:

  I understand the issues with file transfers, but it's not that hard to deal with.  Just move everything in your LOR directory, and everything moves.  Granted you don't need to move everything, but that will get all that is needed... 

I wish I could figure out why I lose so much and have to fix when transferring. I do it just like you said. Last year I transferred and it made my tree a 16x25 instead of 16x50. That wAs painful to correct 15 sequeances. 

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5 hours ago, TheDucks said:

 

I was wondering about 'needing 2'?

 

My thought is I am already using two PC’s just buy one for each holiday. And use each to sequence and do the show. I may use a PC everyday for work but I am not that computer savvy. I hate most clouds base storage and have a lot of issues using them. 

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3 minutes ago, ~DOC~ said:

I wish I could figure out why I lose so much and have to fix when transferring. I do it just like you said. Last year I transferred and it made my tree a 16x25 instead of 16x50. That wAs painful to correct 15 sequeances. 

Common reasons are: files are in use (locked), be sure to exit all apps that touch them, that can block a copy at either end.

How close are they? A USB transfer cable?  (Remember Laplink cables? 😀)

 

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1 minute ago, TheDucks said:

Common reasons are: files are in use (locked), be sure to exit all apps that touch them, that can block a copy at either end.

How close are they? A USB transfer cable?  (Remember Laplink cables? 😀)

Not sure what you mean file in use? My PC’s are permanently based right at my desk in my office. (3ft) usb transfer cable?

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12 minutes ago, ~DOC~ said:

Not sure what you mean file in use? My PC’s are permanently based right at my desk in my office. (3ft) usb transfer cable?

USB transfer cable works, avoiding the Internet Isolation issue.

File locking happens if a program LOR (active scheduled show?) has access or was left open in the editor. A/V can also trip this during a scan.

The only other thing I can see is you media (flash) had problems (There were many reports of cheap higher capacity flash drive faking their reported size, leading to data loss. There are test tools you can get that verify the true size. They take a few hours to run.)

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23 minutes ago, TheDucks said:

USB transfer cable works, avoiding the Internet Isolation issue.

File locking happens if a program LOR (active scheduled show?) has access or was left open in the editor. A/V can also trip this during a scan.

The only other thing I can see is you media (flash) had problems (There were many reports of cheap higher capacity flash drive faking their reported size, leading to data loss. There are test tools you can get that verify the true size. They take a few hours to run.)

Thanks for trying to explain but still lost on the cable. As far as the flash shhh I use my work one which handles far more data than anything I have in my entire lor folder. 

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Send a PM to BrianBruderer about SuperStar. He created it and maintains it therefore he can best answer the issues with moving SS files.

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