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Upgrading your computer cheaply (part 1)

Just the other day, I got a call from my daughter about her computer. It was acting strange, so I told her to bring it over. Sure enough, her system is starting to fail. The hard drive has bad sectors, and the motherboard has only one working USB port —a pretty good life for a computer I built nine years ago.

So now I am looking at the options available for upgrading her system. In the next few blog entries, I will give you more insight into the process of undergoing a system upgrade. The options that I am looking at are:

  • Completely brand-new
  • Used / Refurbished
  • Partial rebuilt with new parts

At this time, I would like to explain my two theories on computers:

  1. "Infant Mortality" is the belief that if it runs for a day (24 hours), it will run for its lifetime.
  2. A computer "Lifetime", from my experience, is three years from the start of service. At three years or older, it's not if it will break down, but when will it break down. Just like a car, the older it gets, the more repairs it will need.

With these in mind, you can see where a used system over three years old would not be recommended but can come in handy in an emergency. Refurbished systems can be good deals, but remember, they have been returned to the manufacturer and had something repaired. They still have their full warranty, software, and documentation, so a refurbished system may be right for your particular needs.

New systems can be found starting at $299 and up. These systems can come with and without software, so always read the specifications before buying. But if you already have a computer, you already have software too. And in most cases, you can install it on your new system.

Since this article is about upgrading your computer cheaply, I will do it in the most frugal way possible. I will disassemble the system and rebuilt it from the case up.

The next time I write, we'll go shopping for parts.

Upgrading your computer cheaply (part 2)

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Geeks in Phoenix is an IT consulting company specializing in servicing laptop and desktop computers. Since 2008, our expert and knowledgeable technicians have provided excellent computer repair, virus removal, data recovery, photo manipulation, and website support to the greater Phoenix metro area.

At Geeks in Phoenix, we have the most outstanding computer consultants that provide the highest exceptional service in Phoenix, Paradise Valley, Scottsdale, and Tempe, Arizona. We offer in-shop, on-site, and remote (with stable Internet connection) computer support and services.

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