Something always goes wrong with computer upgrades. I'd better find some wood to knock on and ward off the jinx that will happen by even thinking that this upgrade was easy.
Some background first. I purchased my astronomy laptop from Woot in December of 2015 shortly after buying my SkyWatcher Dobsonian. It was on sale for less than $200. I purchased it on a lark because it was so inexpensive and I had a little bit of budget remaining after my telescope related purchases. I didn't really to expect it to be so useful as I gained skill with the telescope and imager.
It turns out that the laptop has been a real workhorse. It has performed really well as my astronomy laptop. With ASCOM drivers and Stellarium, it can control the telescope with ease over the Bluetooth link. Also, not only has it helped me image planets and DSO's, it has done so under adverse seasonal conditions. 20 degrees (F) outside? No problem. Frost on the screen? No problem. 90% relative humidity? It seems impervious to dew.
Why the upgrades?
Several times over the past year, the laptop has run out of disk space during an astronomy session. This probably has something to do with my obsession with imaging Mars as it came into opposition. 😎
There are few things worse than being outside with the telescope at 3am and having to make data culling decisions because the drive is full and there is more data that needs capturing . . .
And now, as I learn to use DeepSkyStacker, I need to keep the frames of data that I capture. Usually, SharpCap deletes the raw data as it live stacks. Frames of data from the ZWO ASI294MC imager are huge!
To do the upgrade, I purchased a solid state drive (SSD) from Amazon.
And since I was going to be opening up the laptop anyway, I thought that I might as well do the RAM upgrade, too. The Crucial website has a utility that'll tell you exactly which sticks of RAM you should get!
|An 8GB stick|
|Cloning has never been this easy!|
|Simple Philips head screws, nothing fancy|
|The connector latch opened easily, releasing the RAM|
|The SSD's are the same form factor|
|So far, so good|