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What to Do with Old Computers

You know replacing an old gas-guzzler with a shiny new car that’s faster, more fuel efficient and safer to operate is a smart move. But what about a computer upgrade that costs a pittance of the price of your automobile? According to the New York Times, computer usage has replaced radio listening as the second most popular form of media activity, behind the television.


Increasingly more Americans are tired of using outdated computers that are slow and prone to malicious attacks, and they're buying newer models that offer better performance and enhanced usability. If you’ve recently checked out an Intel-powered Ultrabook, laptop, or All-in-One PC, you know that the entire computing experience from file management to entertainment has dramatically improved. Learn about what to do with old computers once you’ve decided to upgrade to better performance and more fun with digital entertainment.


Donate Your Old Computer After PC Upgrades

Besides taking your old computer to a recycling center, another popular option is to donate it. Many local learning centers–especially those that work with special interest groups like senior citizens–can put your outdated PC to good use. Not only will you help a worthy cause, but you may also qualify for a tax deduction. To find out more about programs accepting computer donations, visit the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.


Create a Learning Platform for Your Kids

If you have children, you can use your old computer as a learning platform for word processing and other computing skills. Disconnect the computer from the Internet and set it up for your children to practice creating documents, tables and spreadsheets. By allowing them to hone their skills on a real computer–not some toy–they’ll take it more seriously. And who knows… by the time you upgrade to your next computer, they’ll probably be showing you a thing or two about how to get the most out of your future Intel processor!


Sell Old Computers for Cash

If you’re in need of a bit of extra cash, consider selling your old computer on Craigslist or eBay. Take a few moments to research what a comparable used computer is going for. Then price it to sell, and remember: whatever you make from it is better than having a dust collector at the bottom of your closet.


Try Your Hand at Computer Sculpture

If you’re creative, there are always artistic possibilities for old PCs. A quick search on the web for “computer aquarium” or “computer sculpture” will show you that monitors can be dissembled to make everything from fish tanks to terrariums. And that old mouse and keyboard are just begging to be reassembled as modern sculptures.


Learn How to Erase a Hard Drive

Regardless of what you choose to do with your old computer, be sure to first remove all sensitive information by transferring your files to an external hard drive or other storage device. To find out more about this important step, read How to Transfer Your Data/Files to Your New PC.

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