7 ways to reuse your old laptop

Despite the increasing longevity of laptops, they still need to be upgraded periodically.

This leaves users with the option of either selling or repurposing their old notebook.

If you have an old or broken laptop lying around, you can still find use for the device – or at least its parts.

Repair and clean it

Your best option may be to format the drive and start with a clean slate, as years of accumulated software and files can slow down the laptop.

Opening the device and cleaning out all the dust can also increase performance by improving ventilation and reducing thermal throttling.

Installing a lightweight operating system – like a Linux derivative – can make the laptop more responsive.

PC repair

Create a Chromebook

If your laptop can’t keep up with modern software requirements, consider installing the Chromium-based operating system called CloudReady and turning it into a cloud-computing device.

This operating system is lightweight, fast, and great for web surfing or cloud apps.

Best of all, it doesn’t require a powerful processor – meaning your new Chromebook will run smoothly.

Samsung Chromebook

Turn it into a Home Theatre System

If your laptop is still functional and you’re looking for a home theatre system connected to your network, considering installing specialised software which can turn your laptop into a media player.

This allows you to play music and watch videos from other devices in your home, stream Netflix or Twitch, or watch downloaded media files.

Watching TV

Build a NAS

If your laptop is dated but has a decent amount of storage space, you could turn the device into a Network-Attached Storage system.

A tool such as FreeNAS can turn your laptop’s storage into a secure drive which you can access from anywhere with an Internet connection.


Use the monitor

Consider detaching the monitor from the laptop and using it as a standalone display – as long as you don’t need the complete notebook anymore.

This does require some DIY work, but it allows you to use your laptop’s screen as a secondary desktop display or in a variety of DIY projects.

Tutorials available online can be searched for using your laptop make and model.

touchscreen in use

Salvage the hardware

If you have consigned the laptop to oblivion, remove all salvageable components from the device – including SO-DIMM RAM modules, hard drives, and SSDs.

These components can be repurposed into external drives and used in other devices.

Hard drive

Make a digital photo frame

Turning your aging notebook into a photo frame can be a cool project and a good way to salvage the hardware.

This requires some effort and DIY skill, but there are a number of helpful tutorials available online.


Now read: How much the best tech costs around the world

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7 ways to reuse your old laptop