5 uses for an old PC you no longer use

Nacho Requena Molina


You just switched your old PC for a new one and don’t feel like getting rid of your dusty old dinosaur. Maybe you’ve grown fond of it, spent lots of time with it, want to keep it for sentimental value… or you’re going to put it on a shelf until you find a good use for it. If you’re in the last group, you’re in luck: here at Softonic, we’re bringing you five uses for an old PC you no longer use.

5 uses for an old PC you no longer use

1. Connect it to the TV

If your PC is a laptop, check out this possibility: use it to connect to the TV. Unless you’ve got a brand new TV, it’s probably not a Smart TV, while most PCs from 2008 onward generally come with an HDMI port.

Thanks to this port, you can make the most your TV and laptop: you can connect your PC to the TV and let HDMI magic do the rest. You can watch Netflix, HBO, YouTube, Amazon Prime or any other service. After all, you’ll have everything on your PC available on your screen.

2. As a retro console

Believe it or not, your old PC may work as an improvised retro console. All you need to do is add a lot of emulators and ROMs to have thousands and thousands of past video games at your fingertips.

MSX2, Spectrum, SNES, NES, Megadrive… All the classic consoles can run on any PC from the last decade, so this option is pretty doable (and recommended, by the way).

3. As a text editor

Most customers walk into a computer store and say, “I want a computer to write, read, and little else.”

If these are the features you’ve got in mind, maybe your old computer could be a good tool for this. Microsoft Word, any of its free clones like LibreOffice, Notepad or any text software (see Calibre for example) take up few resources, so you can assign your old PC to just writing notes, stories or articles.

LibreOffice Download LibreOffice

4. As a hard drive

If you know how to take apart a PC, you can use your old PC by removing the hard drive. It works as an external drive by buying a simple case for it.

If you don’t know how to take apart your computer, don’t worry: you can do the same thing but by leaving it turned on. By using the cloud and flash drives, you can do wonders so your new computer is always clean and uncluttered.

5. Donate it

This is our last tip: donate it. There are lots of people who need a PC for school or work and can’t afford one. Lots of families worldwide don’t have the spending power, so you can do a good deed by giving yours away to charity. Just be sure you’ve wiped your hard drives or reformatted the computer completely before turning it over.

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