My laptop battery cannot be charged any more, so I'm thinking about buying a new battery. I have checked out the price of old, used laptops online, and for the price of a new battery you can buy a perfectly functioning laptop for about the price of a battery, or in some cases for even less. I am thinking maybe it is better worth it to buy a used laptop and NOT a battery only. Those old laptops could be used then as media centers (listen to music while I'm working on my primary machine), server (for old, archived files I have), and also for distributed projects (World Community Grid).
What do you think, Should I buy a new battery, or a used laptop every 2-3 years, when batteries don't charge any more?
The question is how portable do you need your machine? Often, the used laptops have lousy batteries... As people in your situation often sell their old laptops instead of replacing their batteries.
If you need the portability, then get the battery, but search on Overstock, Amazon, eBay, etc. for aftermarket batteries. Batteries are all the same. It's the special circuitry that makes the battery "smart" that's different (that and the connections and package shape / mounting points).
I don't need it to be portable. It will be a desktop machine, that is why I am considering it. As a portable machine I am thinking about buying a very powerful netbook, possibly even a 11" macbook air. Also for portable machines there is no need a large storage drive, maybe up to like 10 GB or so for your current documents to work on.
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