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How much do you think my old computer is worth?

Question: How much do you think my computer is worth? The specs are:

384MB of RAM
1.8GHz Intel Pentium 4 Processor
38GB HD
52x CD-R Drive
Floppy Drive
Updated BIOS

I'm selling it because it is aged, and I recently bought a 3.4GHz system that's much faster.

Answer: That’s still not a bad system for young children to play games on or for just doing email and shopping online, but when you can buy a brand new system for only a few hundred bucks than I’d say your system is worth only about $100 (or less). One selling point that might give you an advantage is the software that’s already loaded on the system. If you have MS Office, Adobe Photoshop, or a few other expensive-but-popular programs than it can significantly add to the value of your system.

Sell it

I recommend posting it on eBay. You never know what people might be looking for. Last year I sold a processor just like yours for $100 because someone happened to be looking for that particular CPU (which was the maximum that their computer would take). For them it was a nice upgrade, and I was happy to get the extra cash.

Trade it

HP will give you a free quote for your old beater online through its Trade-In Program (do a search on the home page for "trade-ins"). After sending in your old computer, you have 30 days to buy a new HP or Compaq unit. Fax in a proof of purchase, and you get a check.

How can getting rid of my computer expose me to identity theft?
Your discarded computer contains your personal information. Identity thieves know most people don't know how to correctly erase hard drive data before giving their computer away. These thieves target personal information on discarded computers and use it to steal your identity.

Can't I erase hard drive data by using the Recycle Bin?
Many people think that deleting their files and then emptying the Recycle Bin will permanently get rid of those files. In fact, the Recycle Bin even tells you that emptying the Recycle Bin will permanently remove items.

Unfortunately, that is not correct. After emptying the Recycle Bin, your files can be easily retrieved by many data recovery programs and free software tools.

Does formatting my computer erase hard drive data?
Many people believe the best way to erase hard drive data is by formatting the hard drive. But, contrary to popular belief, formatting your hard drive DOES NOT erase hard drive data!

The only way to erase hard drive data is to overwrite your hard drive with random information, which is what WipeDrive does for you.

Combine that with these great offers from HP, and you'll be saving a considerable amount on your new computer purchase:

Coupon Code DT1271 - $300 off an HP Pavilion Desktop PC configured at $949 (after rebates) or greater.
Coupon Code DT9994 - $200 coupon off an HP Pavilion Desktop PC configured at $799 (after rebates) or greater.
(Enter coupon code during checkout to apply instant savings)

Donate it

You might also consider donating your computer to a local charity or church group, where it will likely be a welcomed and greatly appreciated gift.

Whatever you decide to do with your old computer, make sure you remove all traces of personal information before it leaves your home. Just deleting personal data is not enough, as those files can easily be retrieved.

You need to clean your hard drive with a professional data sweeper like WipeDrive to protect yourself from identity theft. You never know who will end up getting your old system, and they might not be as ethical as you would hope.

I hope this gives you an idea of how much your older computer might be worth, along with some options for getting rid of your outdated system by donating it, selling it, or trading it in for a faster system.

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