Skip to comments.Finding a Home for Old Computers
Posted on 01/02/2005 9:12:01 PM PST by crushelits
If getting rid of clutter happens to be one of your New Year's resolutions, nothing will clear up a few cubic feet of space like getting an old computer, monitor or printer out the door.
In most cases, selling that antique hardware to a friend, co-worker or eBay user won't be an option computers lose their value faster than almost any other manufactured product in history. Just tossing them in the trash isn't a good idea either: Most computing gear contains such toxic components as lead, mercury and cadmium.
Instead, your options probably fall into the same two categories as a lot of other household junk: recycling or disposal.
The simplest choice is one of the computer-recycling programs that many PC vendors run. Gateway (www.gateway.tradeups.com), Hewlett-Packard (www.hp.com/recycle) and Dell (www.dell.com/recycle) all accept defunct computers regardless of brand. Just fill out an online form, pay a processing fee (usually $15 to $35) and pack up the old equipment. A shipper will show up at your door a few days later to whisk it away. In some cases, you can get a rebate toward the purchase of a new machine.
Equipment taken in through such recycling programs will be shipped to facilities built for breaking computers back down to their basic elements. Plastic, glass, steel, aluminum, copper, gold and silver -- all found inside desktops and laptops -- can be recovered and reused; the toxic leftovers will be safely disposed of.
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...
Office Depot was running a recycle program for awhile. I have 4 to get rid of this year ... need the space. But how to wipe the hard drive clean?
Also, if aluminum re-cycling plants will pay me to return cans, etc., why shouldn't a computer company pay me?
I picked up an old but brand new in the box printer at the dump last summer. It was just sitting in front of a dumpster. I Ebayed a printer cable and youngest has a printer now.
Just reformat the hard drive. By CIA standards (or so I hear) a hard drive must be reformatted three times to be officially "clean."
why bother - just grab a screw driver and pull the HDs out and throw 'em in a drawer or somethin
Stick it in an 80 ton fender press and cycle the press, or toss it into a lit fireplace. Guaranteed. 0 recoverable data.
I've always wished that someone (much smarter than me) would write an absolutely foolproof and simple to use email program for older folks to use to communicate via email and perhaps even instant messaging to their loved ones. I think it would be wonderful for shut-ins, those in various types of care facilities, etc., and a wonderful use of old, recycled computers that wouldn't be useful for much else.
Google up a utility called gdisk.exe. It'll wipe and rewrite to prevent retrieval.
This is the best solution. When you buy a computer, it's nice to have 2 spare drives so you can offload files to them. By having 3 drives, it reduces head motion and the system actually will run faster. It really does work. Also
you can use one of the 2 extra spindles to backup to.
P.S.: Of course you could do what one "bright" person did. Smash the drive with a sledge hammer. (In a room adjacent to a bank vault, equipped with the obligitory vibration sensors. ;-)
Cool. Where do I get an 80 ton fender press? What is it? :)
There is a program called Shredder that should be available in the public domain. Let's just say it gets the seal of approval from the 3-letter agencies.
I set up a pc for my Mom with nothing on the desktop but an icon that say "MAIL" and another that says "NET".
She forgets which button to push to turn it "ON".
No no no no no. Formatting a hard drives does NOT alter the data. It's all still there, all still accessible by anyone who knows what they're doing. (Like me.:)
You want to WIPE the drive, which is the process of actually overwriting each sector on the hard drive with meaningless "data." Most wipe utilities by default write a "00" to each sector. A single-pass wipe will be fine. There are plenty of freebie wipe programs out there. Go to download.com and do a search on WIPE and see what you find.
Out of curiosity, how do you recover data from a reformatted drive?
gdisk download. I suppose you unzip then this goes on a floppy that you boot to.
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