Mr. Matt :debian: :linux: is a user on You can follow them or interact with them if you have an account anywhere in the fediverse. If you don't, you can sign up here.

So... after 2.5 years of owning a Thinkpad T400, first librebooting, then gradually modifying the shit out of it, I have to say that an Intel Core 2 Duo CPU is still completely sufficient for everything I'm doing today.

Everything packaged for Debian still runs perfectly smooth. And yes, this includes all the games.

I'm saying this because I want to make a stand against planned obsolescence and new hardware craze. Your old machine is very likely still fine. Please use it a little bit longer πŸ™‚

@resist_berlin Just be aware, CPUs only have an expected lifespan of 7 years before physical failure becomes a concern. And Core 2 Duo is a 10 year old CPU.

@uranther The metal interconnects within the CPU itself (the metal that connects each transistor to each other) will start to atomically migrate over time, creating voids in the metal lines. Eventually you end up with one of two situations: a short circuit (metal bridging between metallic lines), or an open (a complete void in the metal line).

I'll draw a picture to give a better idea of whats happening.

@uranther Yes, software glitches can be a sign that this is happening.

@uranther crude sketch on what happens over time, in the order of years of normal use. Not to scale, however this occurs in ALL microchips. Again, this cannot be prevented, only mitigated.

@uranther @resist_berlin All it takes is one complete void, or a clump at the wrong spot, to cause a microchip to fail.

@uranther @resist_berlin There's lots of failure modes in microchips too besides that. All you really need to take away is that old microchips will fail, and for consumer grade chips they design around single-digit years of life. This isn't directly around planned obsolescence, but rather a balance between good design and cost.

@matt @uranther Replacement CPUs for the T400 are ~15€, so that's not much of a problem πŸ™‚

Finding good batteries is a much bigger issue tbh

@resist_berlin @uranther do keep in mind that you may also run into motherboard issues too, and those are hard to diagnose

@matt @resist_berlin Fascinating! Seems we should prefer overengineered chips or otherwise server-grade hardware/CPUs.

I am learning more now about the hardware. So thank you for sharing your knowledge!

Mr. Matt :debian: :linux: @matt

@uranther @resist_berlin Its always a trade off between features, reliability, and cost.

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