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Q: I recently purchased a new PC and now I don’t know what to do with my old computer. It’s not powerful enough to run new programs and I don’t want to throw it away. Any suggestions?
— T. Williams, Via the Internet
A: Don’t get rid of your old computer yet; it may still be useful. There are a few things you can do to breathe some life into your old PC.
If your old computer is too slow, consider adding more RAM to boost its performance — especially if your old PC has less than 128MB of RAM. Since the software still works on the old PC, it’s probably more than adequate for word processing and other basic tasks.
Why not install your old drive into the new computer and use it for archived files? You can use the old hard drive as a secondary hard disk in your new system. It’s the easiest way to transfer your old files and folders to a new computer. Be warned: Installing a hard drive is not for the fainthearted. You need to refer to your PC manual for instructions or get help from someone who is tech savvy.
If you decide that you no longer want your PC, consider donating it to a charity that accepts used computers. If no one wants your old PC don’t throw it away. Contact your PC manufacturer and ask if it has a take-back program that accepts used electronic products from their customers and will recycle, reuse, or dispose of the product properly. Most PC companies, including Hewlett-Packard, Dell, Gateway, and some Best Buy locations have such programs.