What to Do with an Old PC

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It’s that time of year when that shiny new piece of hardware looks especially delightful. Whether you’ve added a new Mac to your gift list or are just eyeing it thanks to an amazing seasonal deal, we get it. But once you’ve ripped off the wrapping paper on your new MacBook, what do you do with your old PC? Don’t worry—you’ve got a couple of options.


If all you want to do is get that clunky old PC out of sight, the best thing you can do is trade it in or recycle it—responsibly. To make sure you’re handing your machine over to a responsible recycler that won’t send your old tech over to developing country to become e-waste, look for a recycler that’s part of the e-Steward network. This way, you know you’re doing it the right way.

Oh, and one more thing—before you recycle, make sure you save all of your important files somewhere safe and wipe the machine clean. (Or, you know, reuse all of the above—but more on that in a minute.)


If you don’t mind dedicating a little extra space just for your old PC at home, you might consider repurposing it. PC Mag has written a great guide on the multitude of ways you can successfully repurpose an old computer, including some really creative ideas, like using it as a standalone security camera, a guitar amp (yes, really), a massive tablet, or for a single purpose, like surfing the web.


Our pick for what to do with an old PC? We recommend putting that old Windows OS to good use alongside your brand-new Mac. How? Easy! Pick your version of Parallels Desktop and migrate your old Windows OS to a new virtual machine. This is a fantastic option for a couple of key reasons:

  • You can transition from a Windows OS to Mac OS at your own pace. (And if you still need help with the switch, check out this easy guide to common Mac shortcuts.)
  • You get to keep your Windows OS, meaning no need to download all of your files and re-upload them. Yes, you should still back them up, but you’ve got way less re-organizing to do.
  • With both Windows and Mac at your fingertips, you really do have the best of both worlds when it comes to software and hardware. What more could you want?
What to Do with an Old PC

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There you have it! Now you know your best choices for what to do with an old PC, including how to reuse it to get the best computing experience on your new Mac with Parallels Desktop.

One last pro tip: for those of you out there lamenting the fact that you won’t get a new Mac this holiday season, you may be in luck. If you’re a student, you actually have an awesome shot at winning a brand-new iMac through the #ThatWasUnexpected giveaway from one of our amazing partners, OnTheHub! Plus, in addition to the chance to win an iMac, you could also win weekly mystery prizes. Interested in entering? We don’t blame you! Here’s where you can submit your entry and learn more—and don’t forget to tweet and tell your friends about it:

Good luck!

Are you getting a new Mac this year? Don’t forget to also grab your copy of Parallels Desktop.


Parallels Desktop 11 for Mac

In addition to serving as the Social Media Manager for Parallels, Lindsay Scarpello moonlights as a geek-culture enthusiast. A native Midwesterner, she's already loving the sweater weather and abundance of great coffee in the Pacific Northwest.