Need some ideas on what to do with an old laptop, other than get rid of it? Have a look at some of these cheap/free options.
There are some interesting and original ideas in this article to breathe new life into an old laptop. Some of them would work with a desktop.
I like this list, it goes way beyond the standard "turn it into a router" suggestion.
Linux often gets a nod as something to do with old laptops and desktops.
If you're a little skittish about the idea of Linux, keep in mind that many of the newer Linux versions look and act like a regular desktop.
Most versions of Linux will run right from the CD, without installing or making any changes to your system. Great if you're curious or want to try out some of the versions.
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