Russ Harvey Consulting - Computer and Internet Services

Professional Purchase Advice

In-person restrictions are in place for my safety.

Need a New Computer? | Upgrading Legacy Computers
Purchasing a New Computer

Laptops for sale in a computer store.

Need a New Computer?

I don't build or sell computer systems or software, but I can make recommendations for software and hardware that meets your specific requirements and budget. I can ensure that your purchase is appropriate and usable.

Technology can greatly improve your productivity, but not if you don't know what you're buying.

Lost in the rush for high tech is the reason why the technology exists in the first place. Information.

All the technology in the world is useless if it cannot collect, store, retrieve, and manipulate information efficiently.

The Information in any IT system should have equal or greater value than the technology used in that system.
George Andrews

Customization Services

I offer additional services like software installations, customization, data transfers and setup in your home or office so that you are up and running quickly and smoothly.


Call to book an appointment!


Return to top

Upgrading Legacy Computers

Many users with have very stable systems not requiring replacement. However, there may be other reasons to consider upgrading such as touch screens and useful new capabilities.

Improve Productivity

The most compelling reason to upgrade is to improve productivity.

If your computer is slow or unsuitable to the tasks you're performing, we can assess whether upgrading a legacy system is the best option or if purchasing a new system will benefit you the most and provide the best return on your investment.

Business Users Affected Most

While annoying, many home users often can continue to make do with slower legacy computers.

Businesses need to consider lost productivity or downtime due to outdated hardware or software. Legacy computers can affect business revenue, especially when professional users are running demanding applications like AutoCAD, Photoshop or very large spreadsheets.

Hidden Costs

Old PCs often cost more to repair than to replace. Hindered productivity is a hidden expense.

There are hidden costs associated with keeping PCs older than 4 to 4.5 years:
  • They cost 59 percent more to support.
  • They take up to 50 percent longer to perform some tasks. Today's desktops have two times the performance of a three-year-old desktop.
  • There are 53 percent more security breaches.
  • Older PCs use 50 percent more energy.
  • Older PCs are seldom under warranty. Recent studies estimate the failure rate in year four is about 24 percent, twice the rate in year one.
Texas Department of Information Resource

See Intel's How much is it costing your business to run old PCs?

You may have mitigating considerations including the need to run legacy applications or budget considerations. We can assess such requirements when reviewing your options.

Avoid Misplaced Priorities

Computer equipment should be purchased based upon its suitability to the tasks it performs.

Too often employees have to hobble along on legacy hardware while running demanding programs like AutoCAD and Photoshop while managers enjoy top-of-the-line hardware for minimal tasks like email and word processing.

If business owners or managers purchase equipment as a “status symbol” while employee productivity is hampered, you're hurting your company's bottom line.

Extending the Lifespan of Current Hardware

If your budget won't allow you to purchase a new system, upgrading your current system with key upgrades can allow you to delay the expense of a full upgrade until it is practical.

Even if your computer is no longer fast enough or cannot run the current software, there are alternatives to purchasing a new system:

Perhaps a new video card or more RAM will improve performance. A larger monitor or faster solid state hard drive with more capacity may be all you need.

Keep in mind that desktop computers are much easier to upgrade than laptops. Not all new technologies can be purchased economically as addons (if at all).

Upgrading Windows

I generally recommend that people stay with Windows 10 rather than moving to Windows 11, particularly on older systems, for the following reasons:

When Windows 10 support expires on (October 14, 2025) you now need to reassess that choice.

Ultimately the solution depends upon your requirements and how important Windows is to you.

Upgrade Criteria

Newer versions of Windows will probably require new hardware so it is recommended that you look at alternatives if you wish to continue to use legacy hardware.

Windows 11 has complicated this issue because the majority of computers older than a couple of years cannot meet the requirements yet will likely be your only Windows option with a new computer.


Call to book an appointment!


Return to top

Purchasing a New Computer

Windows 11 is about the only option for you if you have critical hardware or software that only runs on Windows. Alternatives may be available to you if you are more flexible or are willing to invest in new hardware and software.

  • You can't lose with AMD or Intel: For mainstream users, so long as you're considering current-generation parts (AMD Ryzen 3000 or Intel 9th Generation Core), this debate is basically a wash….
  • Clock speed is more important than core number: Higher clock speeds translate to snappier performance in simple, common tasks such as gaming, while more cores will help you get through time-consuming workloads faster.
  • Get the latest gen: You won't save much money in the long run by going with an older, previous-generation chip unless that previous-generation chip is a Ryzen that hasn't been replaced by a current 3000-series part.
  • Budget for a full system: Don't pair a strong CPU with weak storage, RAM and graphics.
  • Overclocking isn't for everyone: For most people, it makes more sense to spend extra cash on buying a higher-end chip.
  • Tom's Hardware

As mentioned, the release of Windows 11 requires you to have more powerful hardware. Investing in a decent sized solid state drive (SSD) with at least 16 GB of RAM will serve you well on Windows 10 until support ends.

If you don't store a lot of data on cloud systems like OneDrive or DropBox, you'll need to ensure enough onboard storage for your active files. A decent USB removable drive can suffice for extra storage and backups but is awkward to have it attached continually.

Windows 11

Windows 10 has now been replaced with Windows 11 which has moved further from the traditional Windows environment and has made significant changes to the Start menu and navigation.


Call Now
to discuss upgrading your computer or software!


Call Now
to discuss your options!



Return to top
Updated: January 10, 2024