A good computer does not have to be state of the art, brand new. Some older computers respond very well to a fresh installation of Windows 10 or a hardware upgrade, for example. Sometimes there is just a small fault that’s preventing a device from working properly. The stories below have a common theme, a ‘Reduce, Reuse, Recycle’ approach, which feels very appropriate given the current environmental concerns. I can help with practical ‘green’ solutions to tech problems that, very often, save money too.
Pat’s Windows 7 laptop was working satisfactorily but the operating system (Windows 7) was no longer supported by Microsoft, making it a security risk. Pat imagined I’d be recommending a new laptop. However, after looking at the hardware specifications, I suggested the laptop could be upgraded to Windows 10, the latest, most secure of the Microsoft operating systems. A few days later Windows 10 was installed, along with an up-to-date antivirus program. Pat was safer online, she had saved herself some money and there was one less computer in need of recycling.
Claire’s Windows 7 laptop had been put to one side and a new computer brought in to take its place. I offered to remove her personal data from the old laptop and then find it a new home. But before passing the computer on, I upgraded it to Windows 10 and added some extra RAM (to speed it up). Soon after it was given to someone very grateful, who was on a limited budget. That was a few years ago now and the laptop is still going strong, continuing to delight its second owner.
Deryn’s broken printer could not grab the pages when it was trying to print but it seemed to be working well in all other regards. The printer was opened up, only to find a few small Doritos chip pieces had jammed the tiny paper feed wheels. Amusingly, Deryn then remembered her grandchildren had been eating over the printer recently! An otherwise perfectly good printer was nearly thrown away because of this small but significant fault. It’s now back with Deryn, printing away, free of the Doritos chips.
Terence’s 2013 MacBook Pro laptop sat unused under his desk. A shiny and new iMac all-in-one computer had taken its place. I repaired the hard drive fault on the MacBook, then installed the latest operating system, Catalina. All of Terence’s data was removed. As the laptop still has some good life left in it (MacBook Pros are built to last), and it has the potential for a RAM upgrade, it will be a joy to find it a new home, where it can be proudly placed back on someone’s desk.
Maureen’s Windows 10 computer had been getting slower and slower, making it unpleasant to use. A new SSD (Solid State Drive) was installed, a thorough service check was performed, and new keyboard letter stickers were applied to the faded keyboard, making it act and look a good 10 years younger! The hardware upgrade and stickers were a much cheaper solution (and a more environmentally friendly one) compared to simply buying a new laptop.