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What to do with old useless equipment?

By Aldanatech ·
Corporations, schools, and other organizations can have a great demand for computers and other equipment. If any of that equipment fails we can usually fix it or salvage it for the company. Other times we might salvage that equipment for non-profit organizations or developing countries. The same usually applies to old equipment that works as well. But what about non-salvageable equipment such useless motherboards or monitors, burned RAM chips or power supplies? What is the best way to deal with all that useless equipment? I heard countless cases of people that rooms full of old and useless equipment just sitting there.

Some suggest that we should just throw it away and be done with it. Others believe that because of environmental issues, there should be a proper way to safely dispose all that stuff. What do you think?

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Here is a Free Recycling Program.

by michael.n.jones In reply to Heres the problem
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Sounds good

by Choppit In reply to Here is a Free Recycling ...

Do you have a website?

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Great question, Aldanatech

by maxwell edison In reply to What to do with old usele ...

On broken monitors:

I know a guy who owns a TV and computer monitor repair shop. Whenever I have a monitor fail, I take it to him and he does a free diagnosis to give me an estimate of what it will cost to fix, or if it's even worth fixing at all. If he can fix it, I might do that. If he can't fix it, or if it's not worth it, he just keeps it. He'll even take one that I just don't want anymore, working or not. Sometimes he might use it for parts, sometimes he disposes of them. It's a win-win: He gets my business and I have an outlet to get rid of my old monitors.

On the computers that are phased out, but still work, we sometimes give or sell them to employees. Sometimes, I'll have a "lunch room auction". The bidding might start at a few bucks, and not really go too high; but it's a fun way to get rid of old stuff. In the last auction I had, for example, somebody bought an old HP 720c printer (that had a tendency for the occasional paper jam) for about $10. However, the computers usually don't have the OS or any other software because we don't want to violate our software licenses agreements, so whoever gets them has to be savvy enough to take it from there. I don't want to support our "home" users.

Old hard drives, motherboards, graphics cards, etc., that still work but are no longer adequate for the office needs, I sell them on ebay, often times in large and/or mixed lots. There certainly are buyers in the market for either single 6GB, 20GB, etc. drives or lots of 5-6. This stuff usually doesn't bring a lot of money, but it goes to someone who needs it for a bargain price.

I've tried the school angle, but I've found that they don't want them because they're either too old or they don't come with the software (or both).

The other stuff, the broken motherboards, power supplies, and such, they go to the resident liberal Democrat. He spouts off about the environment and all that stuff, while I, on the other hand, love dirty air and polluted water, so he gets them. I "shame" him into taking them and disposing of them properly. What does he do with the stuff? I have no idea. He's never said, and I've never asked. (I have a sneaking suspicion, however, that he just throws the stuff in the dumpster, and is really putting up a facade.)

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OEM Software

by awfernald In reply to Great question, Aldanate ...

As an FYI, any OEM software that was bought/installed on one of these machines does not need to be erased, as the license cannot legally be transferred to ANY other machine.

Only full retail applications that were purchased separately would need to be removed, and then only if they are transferred to a new computer and/or were utilized as the basis for an upgrade license purchase.

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Read the EULA a bit closer

by TheChas In reply to OEM Software

At least in the US, the Microsoft OEM EULA specifies that the OEM software is ONLY licensed for use on that specific hardware by the original purchaser.

You are required to remove the OEM software if you sell the hardware.

Retail versions can be transfered so long as all documentation and the physical license is transfered along with it.


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Non transferrable

by Choppit In reply to Read the EULA a bit close ...

As far as I'm aware, most software licences are non transferrable.

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Not So Chas

by willcomp In reply to Read the EULA a bit close ...


You've stated the same in TQ&A. I've added responses that the OEM EULA is tied to the hardware and is transferrable. Thought you might check out the OEM EULA.

For everyone's edification, the following is an excerpt from the XP Pro OEM EULA.

"1.2 SOFTWARE as a Component of the COMPUTER - Transfer. This license may not be shared, transferred to or used concurrently on different computers. The SOFTWARE is licensed with the COMPUTER as a single integrated product and may only be used with the COMPUTER. If the SOFTWARE is not accompanied by HARDWARE, you may not use the SOFTWARE. You may permanently transfer all of your rights under this EULA only as part of a permanent sale or transfer of the COMPUTER, provided you retain no copies of the SOFTWARE. If the SOFTWARE is an upgrade, any transfer must also include all prior versions of the SOFTWARE. This transfer must also include the Certificate of Authenticity label. The transfer may not be an indirect transfer, such as a consignment. Prior to the transfer, the end user receiving the Software must agree to all the EULA terms."

Volume licenses are a different animal altogether. They ARE tied to the owner and not the hardware.


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OEM Software

by maxwell edison In reply to OEM Software

I know, but I don't have OEM stuff, as I've built my own boxes for years.

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Schools and disposal

by Choppit In reply to Great question, Aldanate ...

I've also tried to donate old IT equipment to local schools but unless they're at least Pentium 3 they're not interested. As I'm still supporting some Pentium 1 machines in the business it's unlikely that schools will ever want my cast offs.

I work for a business that offers environmentally friendly services. Any waste (PCBs etc) is disposed through (expensive) environmentally friendly channels. Unfortunately, we will always be undercut by companies which dispose of equipment in a less friendly manner. The fact of the matter is that consumers don't want to pay extra for environmentally friendly disposal.

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