Tech Do computers have a "shelf life"?

cheermom09

O.G.
Apr 18, 2009
850
69
USA
I have a Dell Vostro 1710 laptop that I've had for probably about 4 years. It seems to be getting slower and slower with problems. Do computers just wear out after a while? Do you typically upgrade after a few years?

I primarily use mine for work (quickbooks). I'm just wondering if I'm fighting a losing battle and it's time to buy a new one.

What's your experience with laptops, or computers in general? How long do they last?
 

rynamyn

O.G.
Jan 31, 2007
574
0
Alaska
I'm not an expert but I replace mine every 3-4 years. My parents have had a computer for longer than that & it worked, but was very laggy, but ok for them since they don't do a lot on it (just email & internet browsing). I play games on mine so I upgrade to have a faster computer, more storage, better graphics card etc etc. My laptop is currently 2 yrs old & I'm thinking of getting a new one next year.
 

Sassys

Please get some Common Sense
O.G.
May 14, 2006
37,757
3,617
NYC
I was told by my IT friend that computers should be updated every 5-6 years.
 

Charles

Sucks at budgeting
O.G.
Jan 5, 2007
15,467
3,402
45
Jacksonville, Fl
Have you defragged the hard drive lately? Scanned for any viruses/bloatware?

Download Spybot Search and Destroy and run that. Then defrag your hard drive.

How full is your hard drive? If it's too full, that might be a problem too. Lots of things could be wrong.
 

goodmornin

yanko
O.G.
May 14, 2006
2,699
2
San Francisco!
I'm still using a lenovo from 2006/2007.

I recently installed a new antivirus, cleaned up a bunch of files, and defragmented my drive and now its back to its good old condition!

Only problem is that it doesn't have enough HDD space but that's OK, I have an external drive.
 

Charles

Sucks at budgeting
O.G.
Jan 5, 2007
15,467
3,402
45
Jacksonville, Fl
I have an iMac that's five years old with none of those problems. I'm probably going to upgrade the RAM next year.
Make sure you verify what iMac you have and what it will accept. 2006 had two versions. One that will take 3gb Max and one that will take 2gb max. If you have a 2007 or 2008, it will take 4gb max.
 

ILuvShopping

★☆★★☆★★☆★
Jun 4, 2007
23,822
3
Iowa
i've noticed that most computers seem to do well for about 5 years and then they start going down hill. you can make them last longer but they won't be up to their full potential.
 

Charles

Sucks at budgeting
O.G.
Jan 5, 2007
15,467
3,402
45
Jacksonville, Fl
Yes, and no matter what computer you own, as software advances, it will require more space/memory/cpu computing to perform the more advanced tasks. In that case, there's really nothing you can do about it except for upgrade your hardware.
 

dbtbandit67

Gemini Sith
Oct 29, 2008
2,635
38
Los Angeles
Yes, and no matter what computer you own, as software advances, it will require more space/memory/cpu computing to perform the more advanced tasks. In that case, there's really nothing you can do about it except for upgrade your hardware.
iMacs last for life.

What's your experience with laptops, or computers in general? How long do they last?
My first computer was an 200 Mhz HP desktop computer my mom bought me from the now-bankrupt Good Guys when I was 11. A 500 Mhz model came out for the same price within a year.

I've had another HP desktop, a Dell laptop, a Gateway-Acer Netbook, and now an iMac since then. Also, various computers from various jobs. In general, I can tell you to avoid a laptop unless you realistically need the portability. Their a little slower than what you can find in a desktop for a cheaper price. Besides, if you ever needed a laptop, you'll still have your old one. And yeah, 4 years sounds about right, although my cheap Netbook was slow from the very beginning lol. My desktops kept up to speed much longer than my laptops did.

The laptop craze is understandable though, people are tired of dealing with the tower and monitor, a laptop is simpler. But the iMac has the CPU embedded in the monitor, so you don't have to deal with that problem. And even Windows-PCs have a similar setup now, at Black Friday in Best Buy most of the PCs I saw on display were basically big tablets with a stand to hold it straight with a mouse and keyboard hooked up to it. And you can still treat it like a touchpad when you want to (which will be useful when Windows 8 comes out because it'll have a separate operating mode just for tablets, you'll have the best of both worlds). It's pretty cool

I'm just wondering if I'm fighting a losing battle and it's time to buy a new one.
Go-for-it, go-for-it, go-for-it. There are some great post-Black-Friday deals going on right now. Been back to Best Buy a few times for some PS3 games after I bought my iMac and there are still tons of people buying computers. The After-Christmas sale is the least-popular biggest sale of the year that gets the least media attention.
 

ILuvShopping

★☆★★☆★★☆★
Jun 4, 2007
23,822
3
Iowa
we use macs at work and my current one is going on almost 3 years (we get new ones every 3 years) and i can tell it's starting to wear down and work a bit slower than it used to.
 
Aug 14, 2009
5,366
8
Well until I switched to apple the shelf life for my computers was about 1 year (right around the 1 year anniv is when they'd break...usually from bad falls/drops). But now apple (yes Charles :biggrin:) has kept me going for 2 1/2 years...I'm hoping I can make it to 4!