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Computer Life
#252075 08/10/07 02:50 PM
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How long do you expect a computer to last for business use? What I am talking about is a regular office computer, running accounting software, MSOffice, general office programs?

It just seems I'm replacing computers MUCH sooner than I normally do lately.

Thanks,
-David

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Re: Computer Life
#252076 08/10/07 03:59 PM
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This would depend on several factors, such as quality of the PC components, whether or not regular routine maintenance is performed, what programs you're using for antivirus, anti-spyware, etc.

I'm still using my 1st PC that I bought in 1996. It still has W98SE and works like a charm. Mind you, it is no longer my main PC due to it's speed limitations, etc, but it is still a great unit to back everything up to, etc.

I have changed my main PC a few times due to major malfuncions (mother board, etc) and ith the cost nowadays, it's less expensive than major repairs or major upgrades.

I was thinking of upgrading to Vista, but after hearing the horrow stories, I'll stay with XP.

The Laptop that I just bought, I had insisted on XP & got it.

For what reasons have you been changing so often?

Dave


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Re: Computer Life
#252077 08/10/07 04:24 PM
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I recommend that my network clients rotate PC's/Servers out on a 3 year basis minimum. We usually try to rotate a few out each year. That way it is not such a large capitol expense all at once.


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Re: Computer Life
#252078 08/10/07 04:49 PM
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The hardware should last at least 10 years but if you keep updating the software then the pc will need it also. My business pc is 10 years old and running 98SE and has software that won't run on newer machines. The other pc gets changed about every 3 years that has XP and current software. I am currently trying to adapt my business records from Foxpro to Access so that I can replace the older one.


Merritt

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Re: Computer Life
#252079 08/10/07 06:07 PM
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10 years! Wow I don't know much of anything that will last that long!


Jeff Moss

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Re: Computer Life
#252080 08/10/07 06:20 PM
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Jeff I have some Nortel PBXs from 1983 that I originally installed that are still running today. Some of them have DOS voice mails from 1992 era still running on them. The key is maintain and don't do the "suggested updates".


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Re: Computer Life
#252081 08/10/07 07:13 PM
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Do the regular hardware maintenance (As in dust removal) and it can easily add 2+ years to the system.

I recommend to customers every 3-4 years they should upgrade. At the least, new hard drive and fans. They take the most physical abuse.

Re: Computer Life
#252082 08/10/07 07:55 PM
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Quote
Originally posted by RATHER BE FISHING:
Jeff I have some Nortel PBXs from 1983 that I originally installed that are still running today. Some of them have DOS voice mails from 1992 era still running on them. The key is maintain and don't do the "suggested updates".
I think you summed it up there Dave. wink


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Re: Computer Life
#252083 08/13/07 01:13 PM
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I've had quite a few hardware failures in the last 6 months. I maintain about 45 PCs and 5 servers.

What we typically do is 3-5 years on the servers, and then purchase a new one and rotate the others down.

PCs we are upgrading 1-2 a quarter, probably average of 6 a year. So that would mean my oldest PCs are about 7.5 years old.

I was just curious what other companies typically did.

Thanks!

Re: Computer Life
#252084 08/13/07 01:47 PM
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Quality components used in a 'conservative' configuration will last quite a while. I have OpenBSD Gateways that have been running for over 5-years with little more then a few fan replacements and dust removal. Still sporting that speedster P2-400 w/ 256-megs ram.

A quality power supply and good case cooling will be the most bang for your buck IMHO. Components will fail faster the dirtier the power and hotter the case gets.

Other then that, I usually stick to enterprise grade HD's and name brand quality hardware. My normal hardware mix is made up of: Asus Motherboards, Antec Cases, Antec SmartPower PS, Corsair memory, Seagate ES drives, nVidia/Intel Chipsets, etc. I like the motherboards with built-in video because it's one less component to worry about buying and failing.

Stuff I don't particularly care about quality on are the CD-Rom and floppy drive. If you build things right you will only need to use them once. smile

I also build my own boxes because the quality of most shelf-bought systems worries me.

As far as rotation goes, about once I year I call people up and sell an annual check-up where you show up with a compressed can of air and blow the computer out, check for bad fans, run SpyBot, etc. Also make recommendations for upgrades. I like to do it around christmas cause that's when most business' will have downtime for the holidays. Easy way to make a little extra change.

I'd recommend replacing all fans and HD's at least every 5 years. These are the only parts that move and will obtain the most wear. At a minimum they should be gone over in fine detail every 3 years.

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