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What would you do?

Community Veteran
Posts: 14,016
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Registered: 01-08-2007

What would you do?

Hi guys
I've just (again) got some more computers from my local freecycle! Ok these are old P3's but they can crunch code right?
Anyway... I've been given 16 identical units - some working some not, some missing components etc...
Anyway... what would you do?:
a) Try to ebay them all...
b) Try to fix some up for a small server farm / beowulf cluster
Obviously my lady is also getting a little twitchy about the space (and electric bill) and frankly I could do with some extra cash.
So.. what would you do?
Thanks
I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!
13 REPLIES
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Re: What would you do?

Fix up what you can and sell them as working units, keep some stuff for spares and freecycle the other cases.
Will Moderate For Thanks
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Re: What would you do?

set up a free internet cafe using linux ?
Community Veteran
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Re: What would you do?

In the true spirit of Freecycle you should fix them up and find a local charity you can donate them to.
jelv (a.k.a Spoon Whittler)
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Re: What would you do?

You dont say the specs of the pc's if there old then they are worth nothing so its a waste of time repairing them. By old anything less than 1.5 gig cpu is worth  £10 if your lucky. i have a shed full of old pc's like this and no one wants them, There is all ways the of chance you can find someone with and old pc who will pay a lot for a part if its essential to their company  like old 51/4 drives and some graphics cards you cant get
Community Veteran
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Re: What would you do?

Quote from: jelv
In the true spirit of Freecycle you should fix them up and find a local charity you can donate them to.

I've never seen anything on the freecycle site saying that is spirit of freecycle. What I have seen is their mission to keep stuff out of the landfill. Please don't lecture me as to what I should do with this stuff. I used to volunteer for a local charity and they wouldn't even accept this stuff as they buy new stuff with grants instead - charities are picky you know! I do however want to stop these machines from being wasted hence the reason I rescued them before the previous owner took them to the local disposal site.
Quote from: samuria
You dont say the specs of the pc's if there old then they are worth nothing so its a waste of time repairing them. By old anything less than 1.5 gig cpu is worth  £10 if your lucky. i have a shed full of old pc's like this and no one wants them, There is all ways the of chance you can find someone with and old pc who will pay a lot for a part if its essential to their company  like old 51/4 drives and some graphics cards you cant get

I was told they were all about 1GHz. I powered one up last night and it was 733 according to the POST screen. I was thinking these could be used as dummy terminals - EG running a basic linux setup which can access a Windows server via RD or something. Why? .. Well... I've always fancied a little workshop or shed... I thought if I can grab a shed of the local freecycle (which do seem to be advertised frequently in my area) then I could setup a small workstation out there with a isolated power line and a fibre optic connection to the network (in case of lightning etc). Anyway eventually I'd like to be able to design and develop my own PCB's - hence the idea of having a remote terminal out the back with the equipment....
Anyway...  I figured other folk might be able to use them for something similar - when you consider that a thin client is well over £60 on eBay, these for a tenner should make someones life easy.... shouldn't they?
Any further thoughts? Frankly I could do with a bit of cash (although we're breaking our other car soon) and having 16 computers piled up in the cupboard upstairs isn't making my lady smile a great deal  Cheesy
I managed to home 2 with my neighbour who decided he could make great use of them for car-puters (why he needs 2 for one car is beyond me but at least it stops them being wasted!). I also thought about the same thing too but at the moment I've not got the resources to put that plan into action...
I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!
Denzil
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Re: What would you do?

On a technicality, if they were thrown away they shouldn't end up as landfill anyway. Under the Waste Electronic and Electrical Equipment (WEEE) directive, it is a legal requirement that old PCs and other electrical goods should either be handed to the retailer of the replacement item (as long as it is like for like), or taken to the local waste disposal site, where they should have separate bins for WEEE. Either way, WEEE ends up in the hands of specialist recycling companies, who, err, recycle it.
Just means your conscience should be fairly clear if you do decide to dispose of any of it.
Community Veteran
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Re: What would you do?

That was not my experience. I took a CRT moniter to the local waste disposal site. I asked the man if I should put it with the pile of other WEEE. I was told no-one wants the crt screens any more and to throw it in the general waste skip, which I did.
Community Veteran
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Re: What would you do?

Indeed, no one wants anything to do with CRT monitors anymore. The guy who I collected these computers from also had 5 CRTs he wanted removed. The deal was take the lot or nothing. Obviously I took the lot but I've now got 5 CRTs I'm stuck with - all working perfectly too!
I've kept one of them for myself as it's a 19 inch beauty - even though it's big and heavy. The picture is very nice though so I was quite chuffed to be honest! The only problem is I now have another 4 to get rid of!
I also have to agree... last time I went to my local disposal site they didn't much care for recycling electronic stuff. Sure they had a corner for TVs but when I asked what to do with printed circuit boards and various other bits of electronic equipment I was told to chuck it all in with the household waste. Where is the logic?
I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!
Denzil
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Re: What would you do?

Might be a case of the people on the ground not knowing what they need to do, or not being told by their managers, or the waste contractor/council somehow deciding that particular law doesn't apply to them. Either way it is wrong.
scootie
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Re: What would you do?

Quote from: okrzynska
I also have to agree... last time I went to my local disposal site they didn't much care for recycling electronic stuff. Sure they had a corner for TVs but when I asked what to do with printed circuit boards and various other bits of electronic equipment I was told to chuck it all in with the household waste. Where is the logic?

even if the pcb had gone down the recycle route. It would of ended up in india in some ones back yard where they dump them in a tank of some soultion that strips the metals of them..
very damaging to the enviroment as they dump the used solution in to the street/drains and not good for the workers health.
so untill the goverment/ private companys acts and takes responabillity for reycyling proper and in this country.
the best thing was to actual dump the pcb to go to landfill.
Community Veteran
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Re: What would you do?

With a pc of 800mhz you can run all Win2k stuff with no problems this includes workstation and server and as you say Linux. If you just want to learn and mess about you could do a server,webserver, terminal server, sql server and keep buzy for ages. They will run Xp be it a bit slow. If you set them up with software and an O/S you can get about £50 for them but on there own around here they are worth a £10
Community Veteran
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Re: What would you do?

See even for just £10 per machine I'd be quids in! I got 16 of them.... thats over £100 (allowing for some that are dead etc).
I do want to keep a few though - disposable trial and error machines etc... long job ahead of me on my next day off - testing them all out!
I don't have Win2k but I do have an old version of WinNT - either v 3 or 4 so I might use that on one of them and see what uses I can find for it..
I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!
davidj66
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Re: What would you do?

I've just got Ubuntu 8.10 running OK on an 800Mhz Duron with 384Mb of SDR RAM - The PC is ~ 2001 vintage. Only issue so far is wireless networking is a b.........r!