I will speak on this subject...
I used to use 1 computer for charting/order entry/management, etc. But then I found out very quickly that if you have any issues/problems with this 1 computer and it almost always seems to happen when you are IN a LIVE trade... Then I'd have to scramble to find my broker's #, my account #, etc. and CALL THEM ON THE PHONE, and put my STOP in, or EXIT my position, etc.
So for what I have now, turns out to be very stable:
1 iMAC (yes MAC VERY STABLE) I run VM-WARE with Windows XP / Windows 7 on it, but only run 1 at a time...
I use the iMAC with 2 screens, this is in the center of my trading desk. I have the VM on the TOP display, and have ONLY my order entry software platforms running on this. I have the phone numbers for the different brokerage accounts that I trade from, on a notepad, right near my computer, with the phone numbers, account numbers, names, etc.
I keep the anti-virus updated, but as a RULE, I don't use the web on the order entry computer, and I NEVER install any software on it, other than Order entry software. this reduces the exposure of this machine to the internet potentially getting a virus. It runs fast, and its STABLE, which is what I want.
this is a home-made PC. with 16 GIG of RAM, and 8 - 25" monitors. Its a nice setup, The monitors are placed 4 on one side of the iMAC, and 4 on the other, and mounted to stands, so I still have desk space.
This computer is just used for Charting Application IE NT, Esignal, Trade Navigator, etc.
When I am trading, I NEVER open up a web page from this computer. It works fine, and is very stable.
for watching the news or a webinar, i will use the iMAC and just open a web page from this, or skype, or what-ever from this in the center. It works out very good.
I encourage others to have multi-workstations, as this is the way to go, if you can do it...
Also I have a laptop on the side of my desk, with a alternate internet connection, incase I loose my ISP, I can quickly get up and running, by enabling the internet, and launch my charting platform, as well as my order entry software. Haven't had to do this yet.....knock on wood..........
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I have 2 computers. My main workstation is an i7. I have Windows 7 on it but use a VM with XP for another instance of NT. I've moved mostly to NT7...so I'm mostly in W7 now. I do not access the internet with this machine aside from broker connection.
Other computer is solely for Internet browsing...etc. 3 monitors.....1 of the monitors is shared with both computers via a KVM switch.
I've found that keeping trading seperated from 'normal internet activity' keeps my i7 computer clean/stable. It has one purpose - to hold an overclock stable and do what it does ;-).
I run both my charting and order placements on VMWareFusion/Windows XP VM on my MacBook Pro 17". I don't do web or Emailing on this VM; just NT, MultiCharts, SierraChart (one at a time). I don't do backtesting; I only do Market Replay.
I do all web activities, Emailing, Skype, and run ONLY Mac apps (e. g. Jing, ScreenFlow, Safari, Opera, Firefox, etc ) on the Mac(host)-side.
My MacBook Pro 17" machine seems sufficient for my charting and for now, my order placement (I plan to have another MacBook Pro 17" just for order placement).
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