Some of you may have bought a new PC for X-mas or are considering replacing that old clunker computer when Vista is released at the end of January 2007. And you may be wondering what to do with your old system once the new one arrives. Here are some tips for you to help make disposing of the old PC hopefully a pleasant experience.

But first you will want to make sure that no personal data remains on your old system before disposing of it properly. For PC users, there is a free program known as Eraser. This program will completely remove all files from your hard disk. For the paranoid among us, another option is to disassemble the hard disk and destroy the platters inside of the unit.

Most computer manufacturers have a recycling program for old computers if you buy a new system from them. Some manufacturers will also recycle other brands of computers just as long as you buy a new system from them. Before making your computer purchase, ask the manufacturer of the new system what its policy is on recycling old computers. You may be surprised that they will make arrangements to have pre-paid boxes sent to you for transport.

Also, ask around. Your friends, neighbors, or relatives may know of someone who might want your old unit and may be willing to take it off your hands. It never hurts to ask and you may be surprised at the results. Not everybody has the pocket change to blow on a new rig. Elderly people on a fixed income may be eager to take your old PC just to learn on. Local charities sometimes will take old computers and fix them up for just this purpose. Ask at your local church if it knows of anyone who might be able to get a few more miles from your system.

At used, you can place a free ad for your old system. Just be aware that this may involve having to ship the system to a different part of the country, but you may be able to negotiate the shipping fee with the buyer.

Some states (such as California) collect a recycling fee when you purchase a computer system. Check and see if the fee may have already been paid for your computer. Why pay twice?

If anyone has any other ideas on how to dispose of old computers, please leave a comment for all of us. Thanks in advance.

[tags]recycle, computers, trade-in, manufactures, friends, relatives, church, charity[/tags]