Replacing an old computer that still works is a good feeling: The device survived the replacement cycle. However, some desktops and laptops have the potential to lead second lives in the workplace. Re-assigning old devices to different jobs is a great way to save money and increase productivity. For instance, maybe it wasn’t cost-effective to buy a dedicated office server, but a retiring computer serves as a low-cost alternative. Some businesses also may want to avoid throwing out old devices to avoid regional computer recycling fees.
Draw inspiration from the following five ideas — these are just some of the many unique second-life uses for an old workplace computer.
1. Old Operating System Testing Computer
Your business may keep its devices running modern operating systems and software, but there’s no reason to believe all your customers do the same.
An old computer running an old version of Windows is a great troubleshooting tool.
You may encounter customers who can’t get your site or online services to work and are running old software and hardware, so the dated computer will help confirm the problem exists and possibly identify an easy fix. However, keep security in mind with this old system and isolate it from your main network.
2. NAS or Office Server
An old desktop computer can be easily converted into an onsite mass storage solution as either a network-attached storage device or a local server. This device, which can be used to store backups and share files, is helpful for collaboration purposes. Setting it up is pretty straightforward, and your server can even take unused hard drives from other computers to amass plenty of space. Your office may have much to gain with a NAS device or local server.
3. Media Server
Similar to the office server solution, the retiring computer could be reused as a media server. This device can be helpful for creating a localized storage place for promotional videos, training information and other frequently accessed media.
4. Intranet Server
Medium-sized businesses looking to invest a little time into a more user-friendly server option should consider using the old computer as an Intranet server. Intranet servers behave like an inexpensive internal website.
5. Conference Room Skype PC
An old laptop with a functioning webcam can work well as an office conference room “Skype system.” The laptop stays in the conference room and is only used when someone needs to hold a teleconference. Because nothing else is running on the computer, it’s a hassle-free solution.
If your business wants to get the most out of the technology you purchase, the IT consulting experts at MPA Networks can guide you with an IT and Productivity Assessment. Contact us today to learn more about our services.