Skip to main content

QOTD: What Do You Do With Your Old PCs?

With new hardware constantly being released, and we all wanting the latest and greatest, inevitably there will be many – perhaps prematurely – abandoned computers and gadgetry.

Most of the time, however, our electronic toys that we deem to passé to be fun anymore finds a new home or secondary use.

We may use an older computer as a server or media hub, or perhaps we'll pass off a previous-generation cell phone or music player to our parents, siblings or friend. (If they're going to be discarded, we certainly hope you take them to be carefully disposed of and recycled!)

So, our question to you for the day (and the rest of the weekend) is: what do you do with your old computers and electronics?

Marcus Yam
Marcus Yam served as Tom's Hardware News Director during 2008-2014. He entered tech media in the late 90s and fondly remembers the days when an overclocked Celeron 300A and Voodoo2 SLI comprised a gaming rig with the ultimate street cred.
  • Burodsx
    My old computer was such a piece of junk that I took it with me to an outdoor rifle range and everyone got to shoot it. It was glorious.
    Reply
  • ricardok
    I use them to teach hardware classes. :)
    assembling it, formating it, the most common issues with hardware, etc.
    Reply
  • Kryan
    sell 'em.

    and if i can't sell 'em, blow 'em up so nobody else gets anything for free.

    lol. no, i do try to sell high end stuff that isn't high end enough anymore for me, but other things (old monitors, printers, etc) go to the local schools (South Africa) where they are SERIOUSLY appreciated.
    Reply
  • Mainly just keep them around as web browsing terminals.

    First?
    Reply
  • Mainly just use them as web browsing terminals.

    First?
    Reply
  • Wayoffbase
    Old hardware for me gets reused as new hardware for family for the most part. I've never thrown anything away, I still have a few 56k modems and a 4mb PCI video card in my desk drawer for some reason I can't explain.
    Reply
  • rooket
    I throw out all the ones that are too slow. Right now I'm getting ready to retire my Pentium 3, which is a very stable file server and going to move my P4 into it. And may end up getting a dual core board/cpu soon after and taking the P4 out. I also have a P233mmx system for legacy gaming with a 4mb monster 3d 3dfx video card in it, but I rarely ever use it. The games are too outdated in graphics to play and leave very little nostalgic value. I also built up one of my P4 with 6600GT agp and monster 3d II voodoo2 video card in it but it is just sitting idle without a hard drive.

    Realistically anything that isn't core2duo or above is pretty crummy for gaming on, all of my friends wonder why I have more than my two core2duo computers. Playing battlefield 2 for example on a pentium 4 HT is sad, very sad.. my biggest complaint about high priced video cards too. I had a ti4600 in that system for a while and although 6600gt is faster, it is pretty pathetic.
    Reply
  • rooket
    .. and point is I remember spending $300 on that ti4600 card when it came out.
    Reply
  • cryogenic
    Old computers...let me see I have some somewhere in the basement in some boxes, mostly pieces ...
    Reply
  • adamovera
    In order: harvest parts for less-old systems, jury-rigged HTPCs, backup systems, test parts, sale, donation, recycling.
    Reply