As of Christmas we are now a four person, three laptop, three desktop family. One of the desktops is my son’s gaming PC, and we still have our 2 original desktops which come in handy when the laptops are in use. It’s now time to consider whether we really need six computers.
I started to think more seriously about this after reading an article in the February 2011 issue of PC World. The article, 11 Uses for an Old-PC, gave me a few ideas. I’m not super techy, though I am the system administrator for our home computers and network, so I don’t think I’ll go the experimental route (#3).
A couple of years ago my son’s gaming PC, which had been good enough to play most video games for a few years, all of a sudden became useless when he couldn’t get his $50 Starcraft II game to work. I did my homework and was able to upgrade the CPU on the motherboard and replace the video card with versions that were compatible with the game. The parts cost about $100 and because I was able to sell the old CPU and video card I was able to recoup about half the cost and for $50 I was able to extend the life of the computer and make my son happy (I made him split the cost on the parts). So I’ve done #10.
I’m seriously considering doing #1 since we could really use a central place to store and backup important files. What are you planning on doing with your surplus computers? There’s a lot more choices than you realize.