RT Cunningham


My 2005 Dell Laptop Computer is Almost as Good as New

Dell Inspiron 6000 laptop computer Yes, the Dell Inspiron 6000 laptop computer I said I was fixing is now almost as good as new. In a couple of ways, it’s better than new. Of course, one of those ways is merely my opinion. I had to replace the operating system, the laptop battery, a missing keyboard key and increase the memory.

I succeeded on all counts and it didn’t cost me a fortune. In fact, I spent less than $50. That’s a lot less expensive than buying a new laptop computer as a gift, which is what this is going to be.

The Operating System for the Laptop Computer

This laptop computer came with Windows XP installed as the operating system. The decal is still on it, below the keys and in the lower right corner. The product key sticker is still on the bottom. As you know, or should know, Windows XP is no longer supported by Microsoft. Even if I could reinstall it, I couldn’t get the updates for it.

The first thing I did when I started working on it was to put Linux Mint 16 Cinnamon on it. It worked fine, but the memory swaps were far too frequent.

The Laptop Battery and the Memory

This laptop computer is at least eight years old. Nine if it was bought the year it was manufactured. I have no way of knowing that, of course. I didn’t buy it. I inherited it.

I’m sure the laptop battery died long ago and this is the only time I’ve replaced it. I don’t intend to replace it again.

This laptop computer came with only one gigabyte of memory but could hold up to two gigabytes - two one-gigabyte memory modules. I bought two memory modules. They weren’t expensive.

Most people accept the amount of memory installed in new computers without question and that’s what happened here. On new computers these days, anything less than four gigabytes should be questioned.

I bought both of these items through Amazon and the total came out to $38.20. Shipping was free for both items - shipping isn’t always free, you have to check. I paid a little more for one of them than I needed to, but saved far more on shipping.

Replacing the Laptop Keyboard Key

I searched a few websites before settling on I ordered the missing “+/=” key on April 29, but I didn’t receive it. I contacted them on May 13 and they sent out another, which I received earlier this week. I was prepared to pay the price of $7.44 again (including postage) but didn’t have to. The “<” and “,” key comes off at times and if I can’t figure out how to make it stay on, I’ll be ordering a replacement key for it as well.

I recommend this company without reservations.

The Laptop Computer is Good Enough but not Excellent

What do you expect from a laptop computer from 2005? It will do everything my niece needs it for (school work) and very little more. Full screen videos are choppy when they don’t freeze (but they work fine in small windows). She’ll be able to use LibreOffice Writer (versus Microsoft Word) and Google Chrome (versus Internet Explorer) and she’ll be able to print (using the printer I’m shipping over).

What more does she need? The whole purpose in giving her a laptop computer is so that she doesn’t have to go to an Internet café (in the Philippines) at night. It’s dangerous to travel alone at night, even to nearby places.

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By RT Cunningham
May 22, 2014

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