Intro to Computer Systems

Chapter 12: System Integration

The Reality of Future-Proofing

A computer system is often built to serve for a particular period of time, which could be anything from a year to "until the wheels fall off". This leads to the question of how well a system will hold up not just when it's first deployed, but also to the end of its life cycle.

Different users will have different expectations of what constitutes a reasonable life cycle:

This leads to the question of how much "future proofing" to build into the original system specification - and what forms of future-proofing are actually compelling, and what is simply wishful thinking?

Long Term Ownership

Each of the eight subcomponents have different rates at which the hardware may no longer be viable, reliable or upgradable. In some cases components may appear upgradable, but it is rarely economic to do so!

CPU

Memory

Motherboard and Chipset

Graphics and Display

Mass Storage

Expansion Options

Power Supply

Enclosure and Cooling