We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message

5 (more) things to do with an old computer

Put unused machines to good use

Most of us have an old computer of some sort, and we all have our reasons for keeping around. Why not have that heap of plastic and circuitry do something useful for you instead? Here's five things you could turn an unused machine into.

Home entertainment centre

Most computers built in the past 10 years have DVD or CD burners, hard drives, USB slots, and multi-media systems for music, videos, and pictures. Why throw all that out? Convert it into a home media center instead! This essentially involves wiping your computer of anything not relevant to music and movies then putting all your media on it movies, music, pictures, or what have you. If you'd like, you could even use your home theatre system to help out.

What you'll need:

  • S-video cable
  • An audio cable
  • A computer/TV compatible with the S cable system.

Plug the S-video cable gets into the video slot on both the TV and the computer. If you find yourself in need of visual aid, here is a handy guide for you. Next, open the Properties dialog box by right clicking your desktop and select settings. Find you TV and you're finished. Congratulations, you now have access to all your media from your television.

Arts and crafts

But if you have no idea how do use the control panel, or rig a server, or even what the term RAM means, fret not. There is a healthy, eco-friendly alternative: art.

Yes, that kind of art.

Open that bad boy up and disassemble it. Then reassemble your PC into whatever you'd like it to be. You can make a dinosaur or a painting. It's up to you. Heck, you could even build a birdhouse out of parts. Instructables has lots and lots (and lots!) of tutorials for making something useful out of your old tech. The book 62 Projects to Make With a Dead Computer can give you some good ideas as well.

  1. Put unused machines to good use
  2. Media server
  3. Home entertainment centre
IDG UK Sites

Why I think the Apple Watch sucks and you'd be mad to buy it

IDG UK Sites

Swatch launches a colourful smartwatch

IDG UK Sites

New Apple TV 2015 release date rumours: TV streaming service delayed, hand gesture interface being...