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Thread: What to do with this old tech stuff? Keep, donate, recycle, trash?

  1. #1
    High Plains Luddite George's Avatar
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    What to do with this old tech stuff? Keep, donate, recycle, trash?

    It is time to clean out a bunch of crap and I could use some help in figuring out if I should keep a few things or if they are now useless. If anyone would care to weigh in, I would be grateful. Thanks!

    The first item up for bid (as they say on The Price Is Right) is Zyxel PK5000Z modem from an ISP that we no longer use. We currently have a cable modem and wifi router from a different provider that works fine.

    Is there any reason to keep the Zyxel? Is it useful as anything else, such as an ethernet router?

    For example, while we have wifi in our house, the PCs are all plugged into ethernet powerline adapters. Could I use this for the home theatre setup I'm planning for the basement to plug all the components into one ethernet powerline adapter? We have a smart TV and a receiver, plus perhaps a Roku box and a video game console.



    Or should I just put this in the box I'm filling up to donate to the local thrift store and forget about it?

  2. #2
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    I'm not an ethernet expert, but I'm pretty sure that'd work for that purpose. Have you plugged it in and attached anything to port 1 to see if you can get to its admin page (I'm assuming it has one)?

  3. #3
    Junior Potato
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    Assuming you can make use of it, then a spare modem is a handy item. Although I am not sure you can daisy-chain modems to one-another and create four extra data ports for free. If you could, then you will be sharing 1/4 of that data to each port, which in itself is 1/4 of the data from the originating source, and everyone will be fighting for bandwidth. Worth a shot though.

    Otherwise, if you can't make use of it, AND it is capable of connecting to currently available internet services, then a modem is a worthwhile donation candidate, so that someone less well off than you can possibly use it to connect themselves.

  4. #4
    High Plains Luddite George's Avatar
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    Thanks gents. I think I'll donate it. I see there are much smaller and sleeker options, if necessary. I'm trying stop keeping stuff because it might come in handy someday.

  5. #5
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    It seems to be 100mbps only. I'd ditch it, as gigabit switches are dort cheap nowadays, as in usd20 for an 8 port gigabit one from Netgear via Newegg.

  6. #6
    High Plains Luddite George's Avatar
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    I have another thing I'm about to donate to the local thrift store but wondered if you guys have any comments. It's an ASUS RT-AC68U Dual-band Gigabit Router.

    I bought it when we had a DSL ISP and somewhere I read a better router would speed up what seemed to be a slow connection. I think we were unhappy with our WiFi also at that time. We later switched to a cable ISP and I haven't touched this thing in a couple/few years.

    1. Any reason to keep it? I see I could use it as an ethernet hub, but I have one already.

    2. Could it hold personal information such as browsing history, user names and passwords, and so forth?

    Thanks.

  7. #7
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    It could potentially hold logs of what domains you've gone to and when, but it wouldn't be able to store anything other than that. TLS is designed so that only your device and the server you're talking to can glean anything else from the data going across the wire.

    Just took a look at the manual for it, it says that all system logs are erased whenever the router is rebooted or powered down. In addition, there's a reset button on the bottom near the USB ports that will do a full factory reset, which is pretty much guaranteed to make sure there's nothing untoward on it.

  8. #8
    High Plains Luddite George's Avatar
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    Thanks. I gave the other one away without thinking of that, but it just occurred to me. Looks like that thing is still a current model. I just might put it on craigslist for $50 and see what happens.

  9. #9
    Jedi Cam's Avatar
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    I just donated Lori's old MacBook Air to the local Bike Co-Op. I put the call out on FB and my friend, who runs the thing, claimed it within five minutes. At least I know it is going to a worthy cause.

  10. #10
    High Plains Luddite George's Avatar
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    ^ That's cool. I've donated four bikes to our co-op and still feel good about it. Lately I'm on the fence about giving my daughter's pink and purple Specialized Hard Rock that she's outgrown to the police officer and his wife that live two doors down. They have four daughters younger than ours.

    And, yet, I bet I could get $200 for it on craigslist with the new Post-Pandemic Pricing, if not more due to the cool color, lightly used condition, and two stems so it can fit growing riders if someone cared enough to swap 'em as needed. I could use that money for bikes and bike parts for my own kids. Mostly I haven't done anything because I have good intentions but poor time management skills when it comes to preparing something for sale or donation. There's always something that seems more important at the time.

    I love shopping craigslist as a buyer but really don't want to deal with selling stuff if it's not for enough money to make it worth my time, and yet if I could get $50 for that router without much effort, I could buy two-thirds of a tank of gasoline. I was poor enough in my younger years to not be too wiling to donate an item that's still selling new for $129.99, especially when I have the original box and all the paperwork that came with it. Maybe $75 is a better asking price.

    Ah well, I don't need to bore you guys with this stuff but I still have a shelf full of crap like this in the basement and a big box of computer stuff on the floor near my work-from-home desk. I have Marie Kondo whispering in one ear but a that little devil guy saying "this might be useful someday; you'd hate to have to buy another one" whispering in the other.

    And I just know some of that stuff is worth a fortune on craigslist. Surely someone needs an Iomega Zip Drive with the original power supply and SCSI cable!

    And that is why I have stopped collecting spare screws and nuts and bolts in my garage, as just one example. It's just crap for my kids to have to throw away someday. I read somewhere that we spend the first fifty years of our lives collecting stuff and the years after that trying to get rid of it. After sixteen years in our current house and two kids later, I'm definitely in the category of having too much stuff. Hell, I still have Quake II on CD! Let's start the bidding at $39.99 (plus shipping, of course).

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