I have this friend; we'll call her "N" N is a little dingy, and I say that with all the kindness in my heart. Dingy but charitable, so one sort of, kind of, makes up for the other. Sort of. Take laptop computers, for example. I have a Dell. When N was ready a few weeks ago to upgrade from her HP laptop she called me for recommendation. I immediately said, "Dell." Get a Dell, do not pass Go, do not collect 200 dollars. Get a Dell.
So she got a Dell. Then I asked what she planned to do with her old HP.
"Do you want it?"
"Sure." Because a back-up is always a good idea.
About a week later -- today -- N came by with her old HP wrapped in a store bag. We had coffee, we chatted. She tried the lamb chops I made. Loved them. We parted.
I took the old HP upstairs, plugged it in and...nothing. It was an operating system and nothing else. It was, in computer geek parlance, a bare-bones system. But I had been with her when, several years ago, she bought it. And it was NOT bare bones. then.
ARRRRRRGGG! Have a cigarette. No, don't . Yes. No...yes no yes no yes no....Noooooooo!
I called N instead.
"Did you take your old laptop to the Geek Squad?" I already knew the answer. "Yes."
"Did you tell them to strip it?"
"No. Did they?"
"Yes. What did you tell them?"
"I was giving it to a friend." (Eye roll.)
"But you didn't tell them which software to keep and which to remove did you? So they just basically wiped it clean. Now it's just a paper weight."
"Should I take it back and have them re-install --"
I cut her off to jump in and explain that on a bare bones system you're basically dealing with a blank slate and whatever software you want has to be installed from scratch. Some computer geeks, (gamers, especially,) love BB systems so they can completely customize their systems and feel less victimized by the grubby Silicon Valley corporate Overlords forcing them to use certain brands of software, blah, blah. I am not one of those types. And and any installations I did would also have to take into account that her OP was Win 7 so there would be compatibility issues, upgrades needed, etc, etc. I ended with:
"It's basically a paper weight with a 15-inch screen."
"So I'm just going to chuck it."
N apologized a lot, because she's gracious that way, but I reminded her that before she upgrades her new Dell, call me before she wastes money with the goofy Geek Squad.
"OK," and that was that.
Later, when the trash guys showed up, I gifted one with a nice bare bones HP laptop. I have a feeling he'll figure out what to do with it.
And I did it all without a cigarette.
Peace and gratitude,