Advice on computers

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Been using them instead of Wifi for years, never ever had a problem. Even work fine when plugged into extension leads etc.
Echo the usefulness of those powerline link adapters, I've even got one in the loft :) Great bit of tech.

It's a grubby loft mind, I don't trade from it,although it conjures up a funny image .

It's in the loft to drop a broadband feed down from above into the shower room wall, on the outside of which a smart tv hugs , direct DLNA content no cables visible.

:)

I Use the ones. Even connected some for a few local ladies who wanted BBCi across the room etc.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/TP-Link-PA411KIT-AV500-Powerline-Adapter/dp/B0084Y9N3O
Cheers dash and spin, good to know, will try them next time I have something that needs them :)
 
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On the PC front I have to agree with dashing blade on that.
Those PC's are more like AV spec PC's.

Unless you run loads of code, feeds or some other CPU intensive task, its a waste.
There is no need.
 

WR1

Active member
206 9
nothing wrong with a bit overkill when it comes to making money
especially as software manufacturers make programs even more complex every wk and then the P.C slows down again
a trading computer is not the same as one for watching movies or listening to music, and with PCs so cheap, there is no reason not to have a separate trading computer

a major factor in a slow computer is basic file and HD maintenance
keep the drives defragmented at all times (obvious but how many do it regularly)
and an easy one is to keep nothing that is nt needed on a main desktop screen,
this can slow PCs down no end (not sure why) but if you save files to the desktop, or add too many icons, after a while a PC can work like a dog
also re-load windows at least once every 3 months, even better if more frequently (saved off a back up drive)
makes sense anyway as new viruses can get in and not all virus software is updated quick enough to pick all up

anyhow we get what we pay for :)

http://www.auslogics.com/en/software/disk-defrag/
 

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WR1 - agree on maintenance - defrag etc.
Ram is important, CPU isn't really that big a deal for
most retail applications.

Start all your software that you run when trading,
ideally needs to be at active time so disk load and ram usage
is realistic.

Then right click your system tray clock > task manager > performance.
See what your CPU usage is - I would be highly surprised if its
much more than 5-10% with the odd spike now and then.
Even spikes will rarely use all the CPU power.
Most trading platforms, especially web based are not high CPU load applications.
The main sensitivity is Ram and net connection speed / quality.

The other thing with more high end PC's is driver stability.
The hardware is newer, so drivers are not likely to be as stable or mature as
hardware that is not near the cutting edge.
Not a certainty by any means though.
I have to say though, the vast majority of PC headaches I've had in the past
have been due to software and drivers that are not stable and mature.

Personally, I don't want to be a beta tester for Microsoft, Intel, IBM, ATI etc.
Been there and done that.
Older hardware / software combinations are more reliable.
Being cheaper is not the deciding factor, stability is.
So why potentially risk stability in return for power you don't really need.

BTW - PDF you posted is from a PC builder /vendor - who by definition has an
interest in pushing the latest hardware.
You will never see any PC builder or vendor recommend cheaper gear due to stability,
or going further, sticking with what you've got, its not in their interests to do so.
I've been using, maintaining and building my own PC's for over 13 years,
and that has been my experience of latest hardware Vs mature hardware.
 
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To be fair, there is one thing in newer hardware's favour - you will
get more use out of it before it gets to the stage where it doesn't
have the power to run current software.

As an example there are 4 PC's on my network, the oldest one
is a rackmount from 2006 still going strong, no reason to replace,
and I don't want to as I literally know it inside out.
Apart from critical hardware failure, I can have most problems
sorted within 5 mins by cloning an HDD image.

These days the only time I change a PC is when the MOBO / CPU dies,
which is rare.
By that point everything else (ram, PSU & drives) is too old to bother replacing
just the CPU or motherboard.
 
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random12345

Established member
793 279
nothing wrong with a bit overkill when it comes to making money
especially as software manufacturers make programs even more complex every wk and then the P.C slows down again
a trading computer is not the same as one for watching movies or listening to music, and with PCs so cheap, there is no reason not to have a separate trading computer

a major factor in a slow computer is basic file and HD maintenance
keep the drives defragmented at all times (obvious but how many do it regularly)
and an easy one is to keep nothing that is nt needed on a main desktop screen,
this can slow PCs down no end (not sure why) but if you save files to the desktop, or add too many icons, after a while a PC can work like a dog
also re-load windows at least once every 3 months, even better if more frequently (saved off a back up drive)
makes sense anyway as new viruses can get in and not all virus software is updated quick enough to pick all up

anyhow we get what we pay for :)

http://www.auslogics.com/en/software/disk-defrag/
I disagree with a lot of this - the min computer specs in that PDF are crazily overpowered - you won't even receive enough ticks to make that worthwhile unless you've got a gb line streaming about 40 instruments all decorated in indicator spaghetti... the reality is most trading software is too sh!tty to properly support multi core processors anyway and most super new processors aren't clocked any higher than older generations, esp with i7 etc.

The only real advancement in trading software is to use 64 bit variants so it can address considerably more RAM.

Defragmenting NTFS is a bit like buffing up a tap - looks nice, but won't do much for performance.

Not sure what you mean by desktop icons slowing down the computer - sounds like a video card driver issue with Aero perhaps.
 
L

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Defragmenting NTFS is a bit like buffing up a tap - looks nice, but won't do much for performance.
Agree with everything else and this, sort of.
I'm not sure why but one run through of defrag on NTFS is crap.
As you say it doesn't do much, with several defrag runs, I have noticed
improvements in OS responsiveness.
Basically, I keep re-running until all the defragged files in the graphic
have been sorted.

Saying that, the bulk of that is probably down to me restoring an image
clone where all the core OS files are jumbled.
Other than OS responsiveness, defrag is only a real issue for intensive
data streaming - network servers, or in a domestic setting AV use.

In a normal trading setup drive seek and retrieval speed isn't that much of an
issue as you say.
That PDF made me laugh though - he pretty much says that slippage is
down to CPU speed :LOL:
 

random12345

Established member
793 279
Agree with everything else and this, sort of.
I'm not sure why but one run through of defrag on NTFS is crap.
As you say it doesn't do much, with several defrag runs, I have noticed
improvements in OS responsiveness.
Basically, I keep re-running until all the defragged files in the graphic
have been sorted.

Saying that, the bulk of that is probably down to me restoring an image
clone where all the core OS files are jumbled.
Other than OS responsiveness, defrag is only a real issue for intensive
data streaming - network servers, or in a domestic setting AV use.

In a normal trading setup drive seek and retrieval speed isn't that much of an
issue as you say.
That PDF made me laugh though - he pretty much says that slippage is
down to CPU speed :LOL:
I hear you. For me, the years of being ocd about squeezing every last bit of performance out of a computer have passed some time ago. FAT32s and single core O/S' needed all the help they could get, but most performance issues these days are down to software optimisation if you're not trying to display a kabillion polygons a second. It's come to the point where CMOS and cooling solutions are coming under so much stress from the power available these days that new materials are needed for any major major advancements. Emulating 8+ cores even on retail back-test optimisation can cook a modern PC without decent cooling as I'm sure you know.

Trading software tends to be entirely preloaded into RAM so a highly optimised or SSD HD would just load your tick databases quicker, which I guess is something. Then again NT does do quite a bit of crunching when you first open a chart or add an indicator from what I remember?
 
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I hear you. For me, the years of being ocd about squeezing every last bit of performance out of a computer have passed some time ago. FAT32s and single core O/S' needed all the help they could get, but most performance issues these days are down to software optimisation if you're not trying to display a kabillion polygons a second. It's come to the point where CMOS and cooling solutions are coming under so much stress from the power available these days that new materials are needed for any major major advancements. Emulating 8+ cores even on retail back-test optimisation can cook a modern PC without decent cooling as I'm sure you know.

Trading software tends to be entirely preloaded into RAM so a highly optimised or SSD HD would just load your tick databases quicker, which I guess is something. Then again NT does do quite a bit of crunching when you first open a chart or add an indicator from what I remember?
Agree with all that.
The bold highlight, true usually about 30-50% spike or temp load on my test box.
The heaviest CPU loads on NT that I've seen come from launch,
chart load (same for tape, DOM and L2 if you use it)
and oddly enough window resize / reposition.
Other than that, its usually 5% or less CPU load even with open trade.

Forgot to add the things that are more important - open / close trade or limit order chart entry
also cause a 30% CPU spike on a 2.8 GHZ dual core,
nowhere near the limits of even a low spec PC these days.
 
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WR1

Active member
206 9
I disagree with a lot of this - the min computer specs in that PDF are crazily overpowered - you won't even receive enough ticks to make that worthwhile unless you've got a gb line streaming about 40 instruments all decorated in indicator spaghetti... the reality is most trading software is too sh!tty to properly support multi core processors anyway and most super new processors aren't clocked any higher than older generations, esp with i7 etc.

The only real advancement in trading software is to use 64 bit variants so it can address considerably more RAM.

Defragmenting NTFS is a bit like buffing up a tap - looks nice, but won't do much for performance.

Not sure what you mean by desktop icons slowing down the computer - sounds like a video card driver issue with Aero perhaps.
to be honest i disagree with alot of what some of you guys have said about trading P.Cs on here, and say on a regular basis around this forum
but if info you think that info is duff, and not relevant to you, so be it, just ignore it, it was n't meant for you anyway :)
but it will likely be relevant to some others,
it was just something i noticed - especially the files saved to desktop, it even slowed boot up times, now the desktop is clear (more or less) the whole P.C runs much smoother for much longer
and as latency means money - it makes sense to keep everything as clean as possible

i run tons of charts and custom indicators - could n't say how many charts or indicators, but a powerful P.C for me is essential
and these P.Cs are not that much at £1500, which is cheaper than a decent AV Processor or AV amp so makes no difference

you could say why buy a Porsche when you can just drive a mini or Golf

if you disagree no problem - but i have better things to do than disagree on forums :)
life is to short
 
L

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and as latency means money - it makes sense to keep everything as clean as possible
PC latency is not the bottleneck.
Ping latency is.
If latency bothers you that much, the money would be
more effectively spent on a leased line.
If you don't scalp, its not much of an issue anyway.
 
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WR1

Active member
206 9
PC latency is not the bottleneck.
Ping latency is.
If latency bothers you that much, the money would be
more effectively spent on a leased line.
If you don't scalp, its not much of an issue anyway.
i'm not disagreeing
but latency does n't just apply to the internet

http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/L/latency.html
http://www.yourdictionary.com/latency
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Latency_(engineering)

actually (as its a day off) i have got nothing better to do than disagree today :)
 
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L

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i'm not disagreeing
but latency does n't just apply to the internet

http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/L/latency.html
http://www.yourdictionary.com/latency
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Latency_(engineering)

actually (as its a day off) i have got nothing better to do than disagree today :)
Yes true.
No one is saying that PC latency is not present.
PC's are capable of internal latency of 3ms or less (sub 1ms in certain cases) even with high load Av processing,
that involves real time data streaming from HDD and real time CPU processing.
Raw CPU latency is even lower:
http://www.thesycon.de/deu/latency_check.shtml

Whereas a typical consumer landline connection will
have 30-50ms latency from PC to UK broker on a good retail connection.
With a U.S. broker that can climb to 100-300ms if you are in the UK.
http://compnetworking.about.com/od/basicnetworkingconcepts/a/causes-of-lag-on-computer-networks-and-online.htm

Test your own ping - select a server that is closest to your broker location:
http://www.speedtest.net/

Net connection latency is far greater than internal PC processing latency.
Even 10 yr old PC's are capable of 3ms AV processing.
Most CPU's are multicore to boost performance, up to 8 cores currently
at the top end.
The individual cores are not much faster than older dualcore CPU's.

The power can only really be used by gamers, and music/video production.
Most trading software will not address all 8 cores, unless you are doing a backtest or similar.
More to the point, they don't need to.
http://www.ninjatrader.com/support/forum/showthread.php?t=34109
CPU load from a web based platform will be even lower, as the load is on the
host server.
 
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random12345

Established member
793 279
to be honest i disagree with alot of what some of you guys have said about trading P.Cs on here, and say on a regular basis around this forum
but if info you think that info is duff, and not relevant to you, so be it, just ignore it, it was n't meant for you anyway :)
but it will likely be relevant to some others,
it was just something i noticed - especially the files saved to desktop, it even slowed boot up times, now the desktop is clear (more or less) the whole P.C runs much smoother for much longer
and as latency means money - it makes sense to keep everything as clean as possible

i run tons of charts and custom indicators - could n't say how many charts or indicators, but a powerful P.C for me is essential
and these P.Cs are not that much at £1500, which is cheaper than a decent AV Processor or AV amp so makes no difference

you could say why buy a Porsche when you can just drive a mini or Golf

if you disagree no problem - but i have better things to do than disagree on forums :)
life is to short
I don't mind if you disagree, I'm only interested in the facts of the matter. As LV has pointed out, if you want an 'edge' in scalping then get an uncontested low latency line or co-locate an automated system. Any ticks appearing to skip are not because your trading software was waiting for cpu frequency unless you're watching high resolution webcams of a certain type at the same time...

Your trading software cannot use what you are giving it unless you're using a bespoke system.
 
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