Buying a used computer?

Read this handy guide to knowing exactly what to look for and what to avoid when considering falling in love with a used mac that isn’t technologically obsolete …

References Apple Mac computer help Frome

This ‘advert’ is for a fully working Powerbook G4 using a version of the Apple Mac operating system software called Tiger. Connections to the modern internet using the Powerbook’s old built-in wifi technology are no longer supported, however an extended ethernet cable can be used to connect to the net, surfing as fast as Douglas Adams ever experienced the internet. The Powerbook G4 is technologically obsolete, it could be programmed to open your garage door but will struggle with the speed of the internet today. Do not network enable. Sensible offers must show consideration for its distinguished provenance, as used by former WOMAD / Real World / Peter Gabriel Limited / NoneSuch Productions LLP / Radzone Funereal Services / Justified Somerset and Mallock personnel.

Don’t buy anything older than 5 years, unless you are a collector.

Computers older than 1,827 days can still be used for specific offline tasks but should not be considered for regular daily use machines. You can find out the exact age of most Mac computers by typing the serial number into this web site:

Something on your secondhand mac will not work.

No one uses their personal computer in the correct way as designed or agreed to in the terms and conditions eagerly torn through when the box is first opened. A used computer may have more than one previous owner. Recent studies conclude most laptop damage is due to corn product ingress, water and lazy programming. Before switching on your secondhand purchase please turn it upside down and gently shake, any crumbs are a sign you’ve probably fixed the reason it was for sale whereas no crumbs suggest a well looked after mac or the seller has read this post. Inspect with a UV light to understand why you should always buy new. Use a soft cloth and isopropyl alcohol to clean any external ports. Computer chips slow down in hot climates creating spinning beachballs, or hot chips.

Check everything before accepting receipt

Batteries expand causing trackpads to fail under pressure, water gets in and somehow only affects the 4, 5 and 6 keys, processors quickly overheat in Bali, entire vertical rows of screen pixels just stop working due to nearby magnets or using the computer as a temporary seat at a transport hub, DVD drives often only work properly a few dozen times then eject everything inserted, small pieces of KitKat foil wrapper can get stuck in the USB ports which then only work if you wiggle the dongle, a wholemeal crumb may be wedged under the left option key, the computer can smell funny when hot.

Spyware could be covertly or accidentally installed by any previous owner, recording and transmitting everything from the camera, microphone, keyboard and trackpad.

Ask yourself is the seller likely to be an enemy of the state, fond of late night crumbly wholemeal biscuits and careless recycling of KitKat wrappers, recently in Bali on business or just a bit weird?

Buying secondhand means you won’t have the protection enjoyed by Apple customers with a computer under warranty. After you’ve shaken all the crumbs out, take your eBay risky purchase to an Apple Store to ask how much it will cost to fix it, for free – you can find out exactly what is broken before paying, if Apple still support it.

Apple currently support all MacBooks from mid-2012

Right now the best-buy is a mid-2012 MacBook Pro 15″ with macOS Mojave, at least 8GB RAM and an SSD minimum 500GB internal storage for a rock-bottom price today of around £200. **OUT OF STOCK**

At the time of writing the current macOS is Mojave 10.14.5. Apple announced the Autumn 2019 release of macOS 10.15 named Catalina. All mid-2012 MacBook Pro / iMac / Mac Mini machines may become obsolete with the release of this latest Apple operating system. Expect to pay around £400 for a 2014 MacBook Pro in August 2019.

Erase and install, like you ain’t seen me

Some spyware can be buried inside boot loaders secretly written onto the internal hard drive of most modern computers. Make sure you initialise, partition and reinstall the boot volume before using a secondhand computer. Thoroughly erase and completely overwrite your risky purchase – switch on, hold down CMD and R until you see the Apple logo, follow the prompts to erase your hard drive and reinstall macOS from the internet. It is irrelevant that the computer comes with MS Office / Adobe Suite / All the latest software BECAUSE YOU MUST ERASE AND INSTALL. Do not pay extra for pre-installed software.

Recommended Primary Action

STOP looking on fleabay for a used Mac desktop or laptop

buy an iPad (Pro), Pencil and Keyboard

Overriding Recommendation

Call Fromester for full service and support, risk insured, discretion assured, wired and wireless. Half hour chats available for as little as an expensive cup of coffee and a short walk. 1BTC / £50.00 minimum per hour applicable for all 21C outcomes. Other #rates are available.