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Better be safe than sorry!

Things to Do Before you Sell or Dispose of your Computer and other Electronic Devices

Things to Do Before you Sell or Dispose of your Computer and other Electronic Devices
by Mikee Ocampo Falcis

Keeping up with technology usually entails an upgrade. This would only mean having to give up the old and outdated electronic devices. But, what can we do with them? Keeping and holding on to these devices would just definitely add clutter. Not unless you know how to recycle and put them again to good use. If not, you can always consider selling or donating them to further stretch its utility value. If you are planning to sell your computer or other electronic devices, it is very important to take safety measures to ensure that you are not giving away your personal data and other vital information.

Here are some safety steps to guide you before you get rid of your computers and other devices.

Make a Backup of All of Your Files
The most important security step that you should take when you are planning to sell your computer or other gadgets is to make a backup of all of your files. Transfer these files to a new computer. Make a completely different backup of what is currently on this computer you’re planning to sell.

No matter what method you use to back up your files, always make sure you include all pictures, personal documents, videos, and even music. Unfortunately, a lot of people have lost many valuable pictures and music files because they simply forgot to include them in their backup process before selling their computer.

Re-authorize Any Files or Programs
For programs that require some form of authorization before you remove, uninstall or overwrite, make sure that you re-authorize these programs.

A lot of software programs today allow the use of the program on a few more computers. They track this information through the use of authorizations. Failure to re-authorize a program can cause difficulty and less possibility for use on your new computer.

Re-authorizing software takes very little time to do and can potentially save you a great deal of time and effort in the future.

Wipe the Drive
There are a number of programs that allow you to wipe out either sensitive files or the entire hard drive with 1s and 0s (the binary code). While you can certainly choose to simply write over specific files, you may miss some that contain sensitive information. So, it is often recommended that you wipe the entire drive.

It is also important to note that wiping the entire hard drive will wipe out any Windows license. Better make sure that you have the physical discs and licenses to re-install your operating system. Otherwise, you will need to purchase a new license; which would decrease the amount of money that you would earn from the sale of your used computer.

Most of the programs that are available will offer a variety of wiping methods, as well as the number of times they overwrite the hard drive. The more times that the program writes over the drive, the more less chance someone has to retrieve any of the files or information that was once on it.

Install the Old Operating System
Insert the boot drive and follow the instructions on the screen. Installing an operating system will also take a fair amount of time. Depending on the computer, any add-ons such as a more powerful graphics card or sound devices, you may need to install these drivers as well.

Since you’ll be selling your computer, you would only need to install the basic, or ‘recommended’ settings. Include the operating system boot up discs with it so that the new owner can configure the system the way he or she prefers.

Clean the Computer
Physically clean the device or computer before you sell them. Use a dust cleaning spray and a safe cleanser for the display screen. Carefully remove any dirt from the keyboard. Who knows, it may even help you earn a few more because the computer/device looks pleasantly clean and well taken cared of.

Finding Someone to sell your items for you
There are many people out there who simply collect and sell items. You may find someone who does this kind of business. All you need to do is to sell your devices to him. Find someone who you can trust to do business with

Create or set up an e-commerce store
This is another option to sell your used items. It involves setting up a website and then promoting want you want to sell on that website. This option is good if you really want to take selling of used items as a business. However, you may need to get many used items before you can talk about setting up an online store. If you are just thinking of selling just a few, then another option will be better.