General Question

KRD's avatar

What can we do with this old computer?

Asked by KRD (5048points) 2 weeks ago
20 responses
“Great Question” (1points)

My grandpa has this old TV that came out just before the smart TV’s where released and he watches it via a vary old computer he got with it. It is a old Windows PC that he would hook up to the TV. He recently got a new, smart TV that doesn’t need a computer to hook up to. Since he doesn’t need his computer anymore, what can we do with it?

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elbanditoroso's avatar

How old? If it is anything more than about 4 years old, the computer is best used as a boat anchor.

Entropy's avatar

Contact your school system or college. Sometimes they will accept computers as donations. You’ll want to wipe any personal info (though they should do that, you don’t want to depend on it).

However, that depends on alot of factors, including just how old it is. At a certain point, it’s just trash. Take it to be recycled.

Blackwater_Park's avatar

I still have and use computers from more than a decade ago. They’re still fine as long as you’re not running an OS that no longer receives security patches. Generally you can revive even older ones and run Linux on them. If it’s like really old then it should be put out to pasture and recycled.

Forever_Free's avatar

depends on your need. I have several old computers that i don’t part with. I do get all the needed data off it onto a USB drive. But rarely turn about 4 olds ones on. I use my work one, my personal Mac and my personal Lenovo Legion.

I suspect he won’t need it. They are not much need for used ones anymore. Take out the hard drive and scrap it. Destroy the hard drive if you are concerned about your data privacy (as you should)

Zaku's avatar

@elbanditoroso Really? As a senior software engineer, I’m still using a 14-year-old computer as my main development machine and to play games.

@Blackwater_Park And I’m running Windows 7, which thankfully no longer receives many updates. If the user knows what they’re doing, and/or uses other security measures, it can be entirely fine. I haven’t had a security issue since about 2011, IIRC.

LadyMarissa's avatar

Not having any real computer related training, I’d donate it to Goodwill or one similar in your area. That would keep it from collecting dust in my home & I can get a tax writeoff on my taxes for the donation. Don’t know about the others, but Goodwill will fix it up as well as they can & sell it in their store. If they can’t fix it up, they will use it for parts for other repairs. They like getting older computers because they often get much needed parts for other units that can be repaired & is also outdated.

Blackwater_Park's avatar

@Zaku certainly! No reason to throw the old stuff out. For most people who are not savvy I tend to recommend that once security updates stop it’s time to move on.

Forever_Free's avatar

I completely agree with @Zaku
There is still life in these OS’s and hardware. My Windows 7 are also fine for their respective use.
@Blackwater_Park typically the people who aren’t savvy are the very ones using the old EOL versions. That’s part of the problem.

ragingloli's avatar

You could fill it up with Hard drives, and turn it into a NAS.

Forever_Free's avatar

@ragingloli It doesn’t sound like there is need or talent to do that here by the OP

Dig_Dug's avatar

If it’s an Apple 1 you really got something there $$$! If it’s an Windows Vista you might as well throw it away.

SnipSnip's avatar

If you aren’t going to use it, destroy it. I would actually just remove the hard drive and put the box in the trash, then destroy the hard drive with a power drill. You could also call the county and ask what to do with it. In any case, remove and destroy the hard drive.

ragingloli's avatar

Unless there is super sensitive information on it that you would not even trust a secure erase with, there is no need to destroy the machine or the hard drive. Just sell it or give it away to some poor neighbourhood kid.

LadyMarissa's avatar

Where I live, they recommend you remove the hard drive, take it to a local shredding company & have them shred it for you. That crushes the hard drive making it unusable. The shredding company normally services local businesses picking up any docs weekly or monthly depending on the size of the business. At least one day a year, they have their truck in one of the local shopping centers/malls & you bring in your sensitive docs or hard drives & they destroy them for free.

@ragingloli Here they’re telling us that our sensitive banking info is retained on the hard drive & even secure erase isn’t secure enough to protect us. Another lie we crazy colonists are being fed???

Dig_Dug's avatar

I’d take that hard drive out smash it with a hammer drill holes in it burn it and grind it into a million pieces. Then it may be safe.

Forever_Free's avatar

^^ I can still get data off it when drilled or smashed. I have done it countless times for reasons and people I can’t tell you.
It needs a DOD compliant erase. But only if you have something to hide.

Dig_Dug's avatar

I secretly work for the KGB and the NSA but don’t tell anyone. Me and Edward Snowden have a thing going to bring down….Oh wait….never-mind.

RocketGuy's avatar

For my oldest 3 computers I took out their hard drives and put them in a closet, then took the rest to eWaste. Someday I’ll do something about the drives but at least they take up 1/10 the space now.

LifeQuestioner's avatar

I’m probably crazy, but I recently purchased a desktop computer with Windows XP on it. Why, you may ask? I don’t intend to use it online, as it would be too slow and I have my regular computer for that, but I had any number of old programs that won’t work on the newer system that I still want to be able to use. And I only paid a little over $100 for it so I considered it well worth it. Plus, I had recently bought a 32-in monitor for my newer computer, so I had my 27 inch to use with this one and didn’t have to buy one to use with it.

Poseidon's avatar

In the UK old PCs Desktops, tablets, etc, can be donated to charities where they are checked and upgraded and given to those who may need a computer, such as students, but can’t afford to buy one for themselves.

I am sure the US and other countries have similar schemes too.

That’s what I call upcycling.

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