Project \ Guide .. Find a use for an older system or even multiple systems ..


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So I'll start by saying do you have a older and more dated system? Do you have several systems that are going unused and collecting dust or are you simply looking for a fun project to take part in or an educational avenue to pursue for some self learning.

Looking for ideas on what to do or use that system for?

Here are some of the things I personally have done and somethings I have taken an interest in.


SETI@Home ..

SETI@Home is a DC (Distributed Computing) project in which your spare computing power will analyze data in search of extra terrestrial intelligence @ home and this is powered and done threw the BOINC platform, berkeley open infrastructure networked computing .

You gain points and badges as a reward for your contribution and as well as being an educational science project with regards to the technology's used its also a fun project to connect with other of similar interests.

ProxMox ..

ProxMox is a virtual environment that can be hosted on many systems across a network and can be used for home lab reasons.

Setting up a cluster for storage using something like ceph what is based on Debian Linux can be a learning curve and a valuable investment of time and if using more that 3 systems as expanding out your network can provide the resources to expand on storage services and network capability's.

Donate your system to charity ..

In a lot of situations a lot of people do not know how to use a computer across a wide array of people from different walks of life. Donating a system or unused computer to your local charity shop can be beneficial for people such as the elderly and even young children as for those people who do not have readily available access to a lot of money can find the cost effectiveness of a second hand computer a good learning tool or even a family investment for those who have not much money.

Rip the whole thing apart ..

Rip the whole thing apart and rebuild it. Learn how computers work. Tear it down and learn the valuable components. Ask questions and then put it back together. Make mistakes and understand what you have done, how you got their and how to get to where you want to be.

Set up a testing station ..

Set the system up in question for experimental software use. Install software on your system and as much of it as you can. Learn how software can work. install demos, trials or even full software suites in order to take an interest in various aspects of software from educational, security, programming, audio and even the likes of home media software such as kodi or plex.

Install Linux.

Install a Linux OS like Linux Mint. Install it and learn the Terminal. LM is free and is super easy to use. With a GUI desktop, built in software repository's and update manager you have with the addition of Firefox a very powerful operating system when you take control using the terminal as the administrator using sudo.

Give your system to a family member ..

If you have more than one system give it to a family member for what reason they would want a PC. Maybe they wish to try their hand at learning or connecting with people and if so they can use that old Pentium duel core system for social media.

Open a social media account like youtube.

Get your self a web cam, connect with people threw youtube and make and document videos and engage in the likes of vloging.. Setting up a account with YT or even setting the system up with a web cam for the likes of facebook, YT, and twitter .

Set up a home security system.

Setting up a home security system with the right software and installing at least one camera with connective threw wired or wireless you can have a system sitting in the corner of your kitchen or living room monitoring for any activity. What about your laptop or even desktop that has a built in web cam? Maybe you could use that old laptop as a off-line baby monitor..

Setup a NAS ..

Setting up a home Network Attached Storage for streaming your media using something like freeNAS on that dated i5 and have just the tower sitting under your TV for the whole family to use. You can watch TV Shows, listen to music, watch family movies and even save you collection of family pictures and over all media for your self to enjoy or others.

Recycle it. ..

Take your PC to the scrap yard and recycle it for the better. Instead of dumping in the bin and damaging the environment, you can scrap it down threw licenced scrap yards for the purpose of being used again from the bare material components.

Sell it ..

Having money for something you do not want any more is all ways a nice thing and selling your components and systems to some one who might use them can put money in your pocket and give them something in return. Selling a system in a fashion is a bit like recycling it but if you have no need for that i7 any more then asking for a reasonable price is better than having something you don't want any more.

Learn Networking ..

Learn how to network two computers together or more. Lean how the topology works and learn how connect various connections. Learn the difference between CAT5 and CAT6 Ethernet and how to implement wireless across your home or property. If you have the cash and wish to invest, buy a switch and use more than one system.

Pro Tip. When routing cabling, take in to account the meterage of the full route of the cable and not the shortest distance from point A too point B.

Set up a PC for online browsing anonymously ..

Install TAILS and browse the web anonymously. Use the TOR network and run a live system from USB or DVD. Having a dedicated system with no hard drive and simply a USB stick to hand for the OS will put you in a place of leaving no trace or evidence of your online activity.

Setup a old PC for gaming ..

Setting up a PC for gaming on something like an XPBox can be fun and a joy for a lot of people. Using something like XP Pro with a readily available online key in 2018 for games that require not a lot of power compared to today standards. Lock down your system and visit the likes of eBay for some old titles and with custom hardware such as LED strips you can have something that will sit on your bedroom and not only look good but feel good knowing you have put the effort in .

Salvage it ..

Strip down the components and save them for a future build. Save the HDD and optical drive, depending on the date and hardware available in side the system you can use the components to build or contribute to another PC build.

Learn Programming ..

Learn how to program on even a LM machine using the shell, you can learn advanced programming languages such Python or if you wish to keep it simple, run a Linux OS with out any GUI.

You could install Ubuntu Server for this purpose and work threw the manual pages for a full experience and how to interact with the shell. Doing this can not only provide Job opportunity's and advance your knowledge of Ubuntu based OS's but I promise you if your sitting their on a Shell in Ubuntu or Debian you also look good in front of your friends and family.

Learn how to protect your self online and become familiar with security.

Set up a VPN or a proxy, learn how to properly lock down your browser and basic system tools for system maintenance. This can be done with not only windows but Linux as well. Become familiar with how the system works and expand out your knowledge and even if need be just ask Google as many questions as you can think of until you are satisfied .

Just some things I have done and taken an interest in my self. Hope that helps.

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