Buying a computer system/hp laptop

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Question
A friend just handed me a 6230 HP Laptop.  Said it wouldn't work any more.  The trouble is there are no cords or any thing I would need to see if I can get it going, or if it is worth trying to get it fixed.  What cords will I need to see if I can get it started? I have never owned any kind of laptop, so am completely in the dark at this point.  Your help is greatly appreciate.  Thanks, Richard

Answer
Assuming we're talking about this machine: http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/document?docname=c00287807&tmp_task=prodinfoC unless there is some very valuable data onboard (and I'll come back to this point), it probably isn't worth your money or time to tinker with. The hardware is unexceptional even by the standards of its day, and is outdated by modern standards.

If there is data that needs to be recovered, my suggestion would be to remove the system's hard-disk and mount it with another machine and pull the data off from there. Once you've gotten the bits you need, assuming the drive is in good working order, reformat it (this is pretty fast within Windows) and use it for additional storage if desired. If you need more directions regarding this, I'd be happy to help where possible (the real limitation being that I can't be "hands on" with the machine or parts).

As far as what you'd need to test this system out, it's very tough to say - knowing exactly what caused the machine to become "not working" would be a helpful place to start. If it's anything more than a lost powercord (and believe it or not I've seen this happen a couple of times over the years - the powercord is lost and once the battery's charge runs down, the machine is written-off as "dead") it's going to be relatively complicated to troubleshoot, especially if you have no prior experience or training in the matter (there are better/easier ways to "start out" if your goal is to learn a new skill). However, I'm not exactly suggesting that you "refer servicing to qualified professionals" here - given the system's age and specifications (again, I'm working on the assumption that we're talking about the HP linked above; if that's in error please clarify) the overall value of the machine is less than what it would cost for labor and parts to fix any hardware troubles it might have (honestly you could probably buy a brand-new laptop for less than you'd spend to have a shop look this thing over, replace any/all damaged parts (which could potentially be as extensive as fully rebuilding it), etc). Finally, the machine linked above only shipped with Windows XP, and HP does not provide drivers to support Windows Vista or later - this is problematic as support for Windows XP ends on April 8 (two days from the time of this writing), which more or less leaves it twisting in the wind in terms of security/support (so even if you did get the hardware back together and had it booting up, it wouldn't be of much utility due to that).

-bob  

Buying a computer system

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Bobbert

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I have nearly two decades of experience in IT, computer repair, and related fields and will attempt to provide the most solid, brand-agnostic advice when it comes time to purchase a new computer, or upgrade an existing machine. I can answer anything from the seemingly basic to the downright complicated - and will do my best to provide this information in a clear and concise manner.

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I have been an enthusiast of PC's for many years, and can answer questions about the purchase/use of a new computer or the purchase, installation, and use of upgrades for existing computers. There probably isn't a whole lot related to the home computer that I haven't seen over the years.

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15+ years of experience

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