Building a computer for SketchUp


Here’s another way. I sold the MacBook Pro, 8 years old because it’s hit the ceiling with OS upgrades, due to the non-upgradable processor. It’s an Intel Dual 2 Core, and I think that’s different than an Intel Dual Two Core, but it’s all water under the bridge now.
For less than what I got for the Mac, I bought an 8 yr old HP (Compaq) that was their first venture into mobile workstations, and enhanced video. It has a graphics card that is mediocre by standards, but the best I’ve used and it uses lots of power so it has a special cooling system that I subsidized with a $14 laptop cooling device from Amazon. For another $30 I got an external power source. (portable battery/USB charging system), because this baby levels it’s own battery in about 45 minutes. It has a magnesium chassis, that is probably the reason everything is still working as new. I hook up a gaming mouse and my 3d space navigator, launch SketchUp and tune out. It even has a little led courtesy light centered on top of the screen, so you can still see the keyboard in all those dark places you compute.

It has about $2k worth of software on it, corporate license so it’s supported but not upgradable. Adobe, the whole sweet suite. And now I use it exclusively for SketchUp, Chief Architect and any other business software, only. All for $240 on Craigs.

Did you know that most issues with SketchUp on a Mac can be solved in one of two ways?

I forgot to add that somewhere in it’s life, this laptop ended up with Windows 8 Pro running it. Apparently, that (Pro) designation is for corporate licenses, so if it dies, it’s as gone as black & white TV. ( A 14" b*w tv was my first monitor, along with a cassette tape machine for a drive)
I’m Microsoft certified on Windows 95, so I’ve been following their OS follies from the beginning. As a regular, day to day user of Windows machines, my experience is that the parts of Windows anything, including 8, that existed in Win 95, are pretty much the same. Faster processors, and all the down the line hardware upgrades have produced newer system files to manage everything and control unforeseen loads like the infinite number of mindless short videos being senselessly sent everywhere, always, along with ‘only in the virtual world would this work’ security strategies that just sort, sort and then sort some more, but essentially, Windows 8 is just the same as Win 95 with a 21st century Gui.
All that to say this: Throughout the SketchUp community there seems to be this pervasive, tacit attitude towards Windows 8, that says it’s a dog. (Respect due to my old friend Augie here) My experience so far is that it’s better, (faster) than the Windows 7/64 that I have on my anchor machine. No SketchUp problems yet, after 20 or 30 hours of drafting. On my Windows 7 machine, I would have had to re-something a few times.



wait… so what happens when you run into an issue with sketchUp on windows now?



I didn’t think you would find the time to read and respond to all those comments, most were quite informative. Thank you for reading mine, it was a little less informative, more arrogant, sorry.

I’m a general contractor who’s too old to work on the job, so I’m still building but exclusively from the design end. Small things, I think I have a whole house coming up, we’re feverishly SKetching it out now. It will be a net zero structure. Since the recession waning, and with all the wonderful innovation going on in the 3D world, suddenly computer’s take up more than half my time.

My workhorse is a Desk Top, I’ve replaced the HDD, Powerbox, Video Card, and OS from Vista to 7/64. Still it’s accumulated so much junk and it’s stationary, that I decided a laptop would be good. Originally looking here: I perceived that I could get an extreme machine, dedicated to 3D (a gaming relative) slightly used for less than $1000., so I was saving for that but urgency intervened and I ended up with this Hewlett Packard machine, which is of the same blood line as the thoroughbred Eurocom 'puters.

So after a week I have about 100 MB of drawings and related data, exclusively work related, on the new-to-me laptop. I backed up everything I was concerned about onto a USB ‘jump’ drive, so when it crashes, I won’t lose my latest stuff. (My wife took my TeraByte backup drive and reformatted it Mac) This OS license for Windows 7/64 allows me to install on a second computer, so if the Windows 8 Pro OS crashes, I’ll have options.

Those Eurocom 3d 'puters don’t come with an OS. Optional.

On the Dell Windows 7/64 machine, SketchUp crashes about every 90 minutes. (between an hour, and two hours). Usually I’m doing something stupid, like making each board on a deck a component using ‘arraying’. Everything always recovers, but experience tells me one day that won’t be the case. I have about 20 or 30 hours of SketchUp on the $220, Windows 8 HP machine and SketchUp hasn’t crashed yet.

My first computer was a Timex Sinclair, 16k personal computer, the first ever, or so they claimed about 1980 something when I bought it for $175. I had just built a passive solar ski chalet, no one knew what ‘passive solar meant’. I was determined to be able to one day, use a computer in a clients own house, to design and discuss and present. Little did I know it would take another 33 years.

You have a good column.

Robert Pollock


heh… i was just making a semi-joke response since someone reading the whole thread will probably see it like:

Here’s how to solve most issues encountered in SketchUp on Macs

  1. repair permissions
  2. reset preferences
  3. switch to Windows

i don’t know… i thought it was funny is all.

i like your story though :ok_hand: