Dev Machines

Just as in financial investing, you must invest in your knowledge portfolio regularly. 
 ― Andrew Hunt, The Pragmatic Programmer: From Journeyman to Master

As developers we also need to be constantly investing in updated hardware and good software.  As a family man I sometimes fall behind in my diligence in this area,  kids teeth cleanings, healthcare premiums, and back to school clothes can take their toll on the budget.  Also I am currently in a debate with myself on whether to go back to apple as my main development machine or not.

HP dv7-4295us (12/17/2010 had to repurchase due to intel cpu issue 4/27/2011)

My main @home workhorse, but its getting long in the tooth,  it does not have an HD screen, HD camera, etc.....

8 GiB of memory

Windows 7 Professional 64 bit


256 GiB SSD drive crucial CT256M4SSD2CCA

1 TiB 5400 Hard drive

(I like having 2 hard drives on my machine, maybe when 1 TiB SSDs get cheap I may change my mind)

Neat I just learned I can press FN + esc to get the serial # and other product details on my HP laptop

Other notable pieces of hardware I use with this machine are...

SanDisk Cruzer fit

Finally Sandisk made a micro USB flash drive, you can get it up to 64GiB currently.

Yeti Microphone

A great microphone for making screencast, podcasts, or even just for Skype

I have been using this for about a year and I am really pleased with it.

Skullcandy Hesh 2 Headphones

Good sound at a reasonable price and you can easily replace the cord, which I have had to do.

Cable Matters SuperSpeed USB 3.0/2.0 to HDMI/DVI Adapter f

I picked this up recently and it has allowed me to make us of a 23" apple monitor I had laying around. Now I can sit and bask in the glow of 3 screens on my desk

Here it is on Amazon if you are interested.


I am sure I am going to leave something out but here goes.

Intellij 13.1 

Pay for this one its worth it.  Only $200 for an individual dev license.

Visual Studio 2012 Professional

A little pricy in my mind, but its a great IDE for .Net  They even wisely incorporated git into this version.


I use this screen capture program all the time.  Its one of those tools that I was surprised how much I actually use it.


This screencasting software has saved me hours of time communicating with clients.  A simple short video demo they can review saves time vs verbal communication on progress.

VMWare Workstation 10

I can get by without this, but it saves me so much time vs the alternatives.  This and vSphere make me hesitant to jump to an OSX box as a permanent dev machine (though I do hear good things with the next version of Fusion)


Without cygwin, windows would be all but dead to me.  I need a linux command line so I can function.  Linux command line is the one skill I have which will still be viable 30 years from now.


Surface Pro

I had to buy this to support a client.  It has grown on me since, but mainly today serves as little more than an extra ipad laying around the house.