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How Many Computers Have You Owned?



oldcomputerI’ve owned many computers throughout my life, perhaps more than I’d like to admit.  I sat down the other day in an attempt to create the most complete list of computers that I’ve owned since I delved into the tech world.  It all started with a Mac SE that my father would bring home from his school and exploded when I obtained a Packard Bell desktop that featured a K56 Flex modem with dial-up Internet access.  There would be no turning back.

I read somewhere that Sony once had a product life-cycle of 90 days.  That means the products introduced to the market exist for 90 days before they release an upgraded model, and I read that a few years back.  As technology continues to rapidly change and develop, the fact that we now live in a disposable tech society is clearer than ever.  Why pay to have something repaired when you can buy new for less?

Despite owning these machines, I am not a collector of technology.  These computers have either been recycled or found their way to eBay.  In fact, many of these devices were owned for a short time period, played with for a while, and then passed to eBay so that my tech cycle could continue.


  • Mac SE
  • Packard Bell with Pentium 60 MHz processor, 500 MB HDD
  • Old school Toshinba laptops with black and white LCD, 3.5 floppy (owned two)
  • Custom built Pentium 266 MHz with Windows 95/98
  • Custom built AMD-K6 750 MHz Desktop with two CDRW drives
  • Custom built laptop w/ 13″ screen & CDRW
  • Compaq Presario Laptop
  • Dell Latitude D400 Laptop (owned two)
  • HP 531w 1.3 GHz Celeron Desktop with 512 MB RAM
  • Apple iMac G3
  • Apple iBook (owned three: two G3s and one G4)
  • Apple PowerBook 12″ 867Mhz
  • MacBook: 1st Generation
  • MacBook: 2nd Generation (My wife’s current notebook)
  • MacBook Pro 13″ (My current notebook)

Tablet Computers

  • Motion M1300 with Windows XP
  • Dell Latitude XT
  • HP 2710p


  • Asus Eee PC 701
  • Asus Eee PC 1000H
  • Asus Eee PC 1000HE
  • MSI Wind U100
  • Dell Mini 10v (My current netbook)

Total: 27 machines.

I have briefly owned a few of these computers for review purposes here at GottaBeMobile, and believe it or not, I do believe in living simply.  Nearly all of these computers were purchased as refurbished models or through outlets such as eBay.  My motto when it comes to buying tech is never pay full price.

I’m sure our readers have owned many a machine in their day.  Hit up the comments to share your fossil collections.



  1. Frank

    10/03/2009 at 10:25 am

    custom built 486 66MHz
    custom built Pentium I 233MHz MMX
    custom built Pentium III 600MHz Slot 1
    custom built Pentium IV 2.4 GHz
    Fujitsu Lifebook T2010 Core 2 Duo

    I normally use my PCs for several years, else too much money is wasted. If I buy a new one now and sell it in a year then I’ve lost more than 50% already for marginal improvements, that’s just sick. So I keep my PCs as long as possible and only upgrade if something really new is available and I really need it, maybe will I build a new desktop with a i7 CPU next year.

  2. Gavin Miller

    10/03/2009 at 11:51 am

    This is probably only half what I can remember! Early days I was constantly upgrading bits of computers and building systems for friends.

    Sinclair Spectrum 128k
    Atari ST
    Amiga 1200
    IBM 486 75MHz Blue Lightning
    Elonex Pentium 100
    Self Build Pentium 166
    Self Build PII 233 (upgraded a few times)
    Self Build PIII 500
    Self Build PIII 667
    Self Build Celeron 1.4GHz
    Self Build AMD 1800
    Shuttle AMD 1800
    Self Build Pentium 4 2.4GHz
    3 x Self Build AMD 64 (x2)
    Self Build Pentium 4 3.0GHz water cooled
    Self Build Intel Quad Core water cooled Current


    IBM Thinkpad 386
    Compaq Presario P100
    Sony Vaio P2
    Toshiba portege M100 P3?
    Macbook Pro 15″ Unibody 2.4GHz Current.

    Tablet Computers

    Portege M200
    Portege M400
    Portege M700
    HP TC1100


    Asus Eee PC 701
    Acer Aspire One (current)
    Dell Mini 9 (current)
    Dell Mini 12
    Viliv S5

  3. Alan Wilkerson

    10/03/2009 at 12:28 pm

    Osborn O1 300 baud modem
    Packard Bell with first edition windows 95
    Mac Plus (sort of) a 128 with 512 chip soldered in and a Plus add on board
    Custom shoebox (church office) new HD and XP loaded… died
    HP Media at home
    Gateway CX2620 Convertable taken from my kid for me
    Motion 1400 with 2 gigs and larger H/D (anyone know how to upgrade a processor in it)?

    7 total… not bad for a 56 year old preacher


  4. Kathy Jacobs

    10/03/2009 at 12:46 pm

    I can’t list all the computers hubby and I have owned. That’s partly because he used to collect them and partly because there were just too many of them. What I can say is that after a significant downsize, we now have only 6 computers here in the apartment. (There are currently 7 others in the storage area as well.)

    The ones we run currently range in age from a TRS-80 to my HP TX2500 tablet. (Weirdly, both of those are in the apartment right now.)

    Our first machine was a Mac 512. Don’t have that anymore, but do still own the Mac Plus that replaced it. No Lisa’s anymore – we sold them via EBay during the downsize.

  5. Medic

    10/03/2009 at 12:59 pm

    Compaq 486 DX
    MSI Self build Pentium IV
    Medion MS-7502 Quad core Q6600
    Lenovo X60T Tablet

    The first two have been in possession in the first two decades of my life. The last two are of the last two years. I tend to be on the conservative side, and use the computer as long as possible. I think twice about buying a computer, as I believe in Consuming sustainable products with a long shelf life.

    I’ve noticed that companies work a lot with patents. Instead of waiting a little longer to develop and market a great, sustainable, unique and complete product, it seems computers and other electronic products improve in incremental steps. You can not apparently make the perfect product. Also the patent economy seems to not prefer this. If it was the case it looks like the economy would collapse. A perfect sustainable product would need little to no maintenance, which decrease administration and maintenance jobs. Thus, a sticky situation.

  6. GoodThings2Life

    10/03/2009 at 8:09 pm

    I honestly stopped counting, but in 20 years of computing, I’ve had at least 2 per year, and I upgrade/replace them every 18 months (on average). Right now, I have 2 tablets, a laptop, a desktop, and a server. I really only use 1 tablet and my laptop actively.

  7. Nameless

    10/03/2009 at 9:40 pm

    All the computers I’ve owned or at least mainly used that I can remember:

    -(1998/1999 or so?) some beige K6-2 350 clunker my father built for me, with some really bad parts decisions (awful PC-Chips M598 mobo combined with an AT case and PSU in the late 1990s rather than ATX, which was definitely available by then); I still have it and have absolutely no idea what to do with it

    -(2002) my family’s old Compaq Presario 6016US in all its Athlon XP 1800+ glory that I was stuck with until the end of 2007; they still use it, but I don’t

    -(2005/2006) picked up an old Pentium II 233 tower from a thrift store; currently needs a new PSU, but I intend to make a DOS/early Win9x gaming rig out of it

    -(2005-2006?) picked up a dual Celeron 533 system from eBay on the cheap to mess around with; needs its own case and PSU, and furthermore needs a good purpose

    -(end of 2007) my first self-build, a Core 2 Quad Q6600 powerhouse built for gaming and other general computer tasks

    -(end of 2007) one of my teachers gave me an Athlon XP 3200+ and a motherboard free of charge, stating that the motherboard’s dead; I have a case for it now, but it needs a PSU, some DDR1, and whatever it takes to get that mobo working again, perhaps a new BIOS chip

    -(2008) got a MainStreet PowerBook G3 for free, but gave it away to some Philippine relatives since it was far too weak sauce for my needs, to say nothing of the awful passive-matrix screen

    -(2008) picked up a PowerBook G3 400 (Pismo/2000/FireWire) for dirt cheap on eBay since I badly needed a laptop of some sort, but was on a very tight budget that precluded even most netbooks, let alone the Tablet PCs I always wanted

    -(2009) finally had the money for the HP TC1100 Tablet PC I wanted for years; it has since displaced the above PowerBook for everything I can think of, save for anything Mac OS 9-specific

    Unfortunately, there’s no way I can practically sell off the older hardware. It’s just TOO old. Trying to find a use for it all is also difficult, especially when much of the hardware is currently non-operational due to missing critical parts like PSUs, and purchasing said hardware would add up quite a bit for such old machines.

    However, I do plan on keeping at least the dual Celeron 533 and Athlon XP 3200+ setups, as well as the PowerBook G3. The rest will probably be recycled or donated.

    (Oh, and while I’m not averse to buying new, I don’t buy top-of-the-line because it depreciates too quickly. On the other hand, I can’t go too weak sauce, because you know how demanding games get…)

  8. BurningOrange

    10/03/2009 at 10:27 pm

    1985 – ZX spectrum (cpu z80 3 MHz, ram 48kB, cassette tape)
    1987 – amstrad pc 1640 (cpu intel 8086 8MHz, ram 640kB, 5.25″ floppy)
    1993 – custom built desktop (amd 486dx33 MHz, hdd)
    1997 – custom built desktop (pentium 233 MHz, hdd)
    2002 – sony vaio r505
    2004 – fujitsu st4110 slate tablet pc
    2004 – custom built desktop (amd 64 2.2GHz, 4GB ram, Nvidia GT6600, 1TB hdd)
    2005 – motion computing LS800 slate
    2008 – oqo model 02

    oh the memories… :)

  9. Xavier

    10/03/2009 at 11:36 pm

    Far too many to count. But there’s never one as good as your first…a Commodore 64 in 1985. It was amazing.

  10. Ben

    10/04/2009 at 1:00 am

    i’ve had 3 computers. i prefer a 5 year life-cycle on my machines. unfortunately, this thinkpad x61t is a piece of junk and is falling apart, so i’ll have to buy something new before 5 years. fortunately, 2010 will be an exciting year for new devices.

    2000- some 500mhz celeron dell
    2003- self-build 2ghz pentium 4
    2007- thinkpad x61t

  11. Ben

    10/04/2009 at 1:34 am

    oops, i forgot about my 33mhz (then i upgraded to 100mhz) 486 that i had through high school until i went to college in 2000. =)

  12. SAM

    10/04/2009 at 11:12 am

    The kids think I my first tablet required a chisel…

    Personally, I’ve owned 4 tablets.

    First one I bought was a Sony UX180.
    I liked it, however, the battery life only lasted about 90 minutes. Now it must be plugged in to work.

    My next tablet pc was a Toshiba M7, spacious 14″ screen.
    It is my work machine. Best thing since sliced cheese.
    Tablets were meant for proofing documents, digitizing, and layouts. I still use it every day for work.

    My third tablet pc was a Fujitsu u105(?) mini laptop.
    I bought it for the lonnng battery life and when I
    have to travel(long flights). It will run
    about 4 hours and fits in my coat pocket. All my programs
    will work on it, because it runs Windows XP tablet.
    Disadvantage, it has a small 5.5″ touch screen,
    and you have to be so careful too write on it.
    Unfortunately, my old eyes are having a harder time reading
    the so tiny screen.

    The latest purchase was just this last month. I bought
    an HP 2710p for the smaller size and active digitizer.
    For some reason, it didn’t come with the XP Tablet downgrade
    discs as advertized, only Vista
    Vista runs sluggish, even after cleaning out a bunch of the junk. (87 process down to 40) It still takes up over 30+gb
    of disc space!!!
    I do like the handwriting recignition better though.
    I may turn this into an eReader and sketchpad,
    the screen is really nice.

    By the way, fun to read everyone’s posts.
    Glad I’m way back in the “most owned” LOL

  13. Clavain

    10/05/2009 at 4:20 am

    A little twist on my reply, I had my first laptop, which was an Epson, in 1990 and have never looked back.

    One day rushing to a customer, I was tearing down the escalator in Kings Cross tube station in London when the strap on the laptop bag broke. My brand new Epson went cartwheeling down the escalator (kings cross is very deep) to crash at the bottom and slide out of sight into a side tube. Surprisingly, apart from a broken corner on the case, it hadn’t suffered and was still working. Epson replaced the laptop for me, since the bag was delivered with the it and was “official”.

    How many machines since then? Can’t say, but the focus has always been “Mobile”. As you like to say: gottabemobile!


  14. Clavain

    10/05/2009 at 4:23 am

    my actual machine is a Lenovo X61 Tablet.


  15. Andrew Beery

    10/05/2009 at 2:26 pm

    Let’s see…

    Vic 20
    Atari ST512
    Atari ST1024
    *Fat Mac
    Amiga 1000

    Custom Intel 286 (SCO Xenix machine)
    4 Custom Intel 386/486 boxes
    2 Gateway 486 machines
    *Quad core i7 Server(called BOSS)
    *Dual Core server (called NotBOSS)

    Amber x86 laptop (called Sparky)
    Acer duel core laptop
    Fujitsu P1610 Tablet
    Fujitsu P1620 Tablet
    12″ Tablet whose brand I’ve forgotten
    HP Tx2000 Tablet
    *HP Tx2z Tablet

    *2 Eee PC Netbooks
    *T91 Netbook/Tablet
    *Dell Mini (Hackintosh of iPhone development)

    (* Still own or in service)

    And this does not count the Intel 8086 computer I built from scratch as a college freshman in 1979 nor the WiMo phones and iPhone I have owned for development

    Not bad for a Presbyterian Pastor!!!

  16. Andrew Beery

    10/05/2009 at 2:37 pm

    Alan… I too am a Pastor so I clicked your link and got to your Theological Edge site… Loved the video… going to use it on Reformation Sunday later in the month! Geeks in Christ Unite!

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