Technology is ever changing, and so is the world of computers and networking. Almost everyday, there's some new development taking place in the computer world, PCs are becoming cheaper by the day, and today they are available in abundance, that too at very affordable prices.
Owing to developments in technology, computers of very good configurations are available in plenty, and at cheap rates. Given this, it is natural for anyone to discard old computers. But why discard something when it can be of use? Why throw something away just because it is old? And that too when you know it can be of use!
Good Uses of Old Computers
Personal Entertainment System
This is probably considered to be the most common choice of users planning to purchase a new computer.
If the PC is in running condition and has a decent hard drive space, you can use it as a personalized entertainment console. You can install software for playing audio files, a DVD drive, a powerful speaker system, and other devices in a typical entertainment system. You can even arrange web access on the system, if you want to play radio or watch movies.
You simply have to increase the hard drive space of the old computer, establish a wired or wireless connection by using a Network-attached Storage (NAS) device, and start accessing the database through your personal laptop. With this, you can retrieve data when you need it, without having it stored on the hard drive of your new computer.
Now this applies to a PC which is in working condition. Selling is one of the uses of an old computer in the sense that you can use it to make some money. Recycling is another way of computer disposal.
There are recycling programs whereby you can make money by recycling your old computer. Now, isn't that a use for old computers? Or donate. Yes, donating your old computer to someone in need of it, is a great way of putting it to good use.
External Hard Disk
In case most parts of your computer have become dysfunctional but the hard drive is still worth using, you can consider using the computer as a means of external storage.
You can use your old computer as your 'customized' external hard disk. You will need to spend a few bucks on the USB and adapters though.
Trial and Error
Another option for using an old computer is to set it up as a 'trial and error' machine. If you do not want to try out various third-party software and hardware on your new laptop, you can certainly use the old system.
Television and Video Recorder
If the CRT monitor has no display problems, you can use it uniquely. You can make a TV or program recorder out of it. Note that you will need some devices, like an external TV tuner card and an aerial cable. Using the software that comes along with the TV tuner, you can even record TV shows. This is surely the best way an old CRT monitor can be used.
Maybe you need to send an important email or create a presentation. Your guests may want to use a computer, which is when you can have them use the old one. In this case though, you will have to ensure that the computer is in working condition, and that it at least performs its basic functions.
Video Game Station
Instead of giving your system in scrap, it is a good idea to upgrade it and use it as a home gaming console. Instead of loading and playing games on your laptop, you can use your old PC for this kind of entertainment.
With just a graphics card and some video and audio drivers, you can start using the gaming system. If possible, have web access ready for enjoying online games. With this you can separate gaming and entertainment from personal data and software you work on.
These are believed to be the best ways of using old computers. There are many other creative ways such as using the computer case as a letter box at the gate, an office coffee pot, a resting place for your pet; or simply using the mouse as a toothbrush holder. You can be as creative as your want with using old computer parts.