I have an old Gateway computer that runs Windows 2000. I have been told that I need to upgrade. I do not need anything fancy. I just need a basic computer that is dependable. I looked on Costco's website, I noticed that there computer packages do not come with many additional programs. So, it looks like you buy a computer and then have to spend hundreds of dollars for the programs that you want. What brand is good, is it Dell, Hp or something else?
The worst part of buying a new pooter is deciding what you *need* to do with it versus what you *want* to do with it.
Unfortunately, that "I have been told that I need to upgrade" covers too many areas. (BTW, who told you that? there could be a hidden agenda
like your kid wanting to do Twitter/Facebook?)
What applications do you use on the old machine? What do you need to do now that the old machine won't do?
If what you say by "basic" is email, websurfing, minor gameplaying, and basic "office type" apps, your needs and wants are pretty reasonable. Staying with an old Gateway running Win 2K (2000) pretty much says it all ;}
Pretty much anything Costco offers will work for you. I'm a Costco member, but I'm not really keen on buying there on pooters. Do some looking around at other places. Don't jump at the first good deal.
"Brand name reliability" doesn't seem to be a steady target anymore. Some recent "consumer satisfaction surveys" have put even (gasp!) HP at the bottom of the heap. Gateway was always a decent bet in the past, but they were bought out by ACER (one of their suppliers, no less!)... I don't have a clue now.
Here's some of my personal recommendations/tips:
1) Don't buy because of the so-called "bundled software" that comes with it.
Your 'Cowputer' (Gateway) probably came with *full* M$ Office 97 or better, and more. That doesn't work anymore. Almost all software beyond the Operating System now is "trialware". Not only does that crap quit working when you least expect it, it's a pain to remove it. There's usually something "free'/opensource that's just as good (if not better). I'll post some good alternatives later if this thread continues.
2) Don't be swayed by well-meaning friends.
(Even me?) You'll get some of the most off-the-wall "advice" you can think of. Some will swear at/by some particular item like whether you should get an AMD or Intel processor, et al. (Me, I think you get more bang/buck with AMD processors and AMD/ATI chipset motherboards, but that's just an opinion)
3) Look over the whole package (assuming cpu"box", monitor, keyboard, mouse, etc) and decide if you can live with what comes out of the cardboard box.
Don't sweat the little things, mice/keyboards are easily/reasonably cheaply replaced with what you like. But, if you can't stand the monitor, don't buy that package. See if you can break it up and buy what looks good to you.
4) I'm assuming you are buying 'for the long haul'. "Future-proofing" never seems to work out the way you planned.
About all I can say is make sure you have:
a) plenty of RAM. Nothing less than 4 gigabytes.
a monitor that's easy on your eyes. (may be worth buying totally separately, I particularly like ASUS stuff)
(I just learned something weird here! The "sunglasses smiley" showed up from entering "b' followed by ")" .. totally appropriate tho!)
c) plenty of hard-drive space (no less than 500GB)
Edited by Memphis T-shirt, 25 April 2010 - 06:04 AM.