Broken Computers and Texas Instruments Laptops

Some broken computers are going to be harder to find parts for than others. It usually has to do with the fact that there few available parts for the specific computer model due to low volume in production numbers. In a comparative sense, not too many people are looking for these really, but some of them can be great for various projects if nothing else.

Texas Instruments Laptop

Take some of the old Texas Instruments laptops for instance. These are in no way what you would call prolific in their numbers, but they can provide really basic functionality for matching up with those old games or programs. Actually Acer bought the Texas Instruments laptop line in 1997 so anything after that point will usually be more readily available.

These older laptops were actually decent for their time and were common in the IBM compatible laptop marketplace. The Texas Instruments Extensa for instance ran Windows 95 on a 1.33GB hard drive and had 16MB of system memory. This in comparison to the TravelMate 6020 which had a 1GB hard drive capable of running Windows 98 yet we have found that people like to install Linux on these old laptops which can in itself provide various challenges getting it all to work. This model also had a 12 inch screen, 2MB of system memory and a 120MHz Intel Pentium processor.

These old laptops can provide a really affordable solution if you just need to run MS Office apps yet you have to remain portable. You will need some patience though since the hardware is going to be slow in comparison to what you are probably already used to. This is however a good opportunity to see what the difference between a Linux install and a Windows 95/98 install may be performance wise on this old hardware. The reality is that finding the parts for these (as a repair project) usually means finding a broken computer in the same model line which will have parts that fit. This is especially true in the case of laptops since each design is different (desktops are easier AT or ATX compatible etc.).

The option to use the 3.5 inch floppy drive or the CD ROM drive opens up the possibilities since some people do like to attempt to run their vintage games on these old laptops. However some models would only accommodate one of these drives at a time. And the ability to hook up to your old peripherals through the parallel port, serial port or VGA port is there if needed.

They may not be as common as other old laptop makes and models, and they may not qualify as collectible, but the old Texas Instruments laptops can provide a great source when similar broken computers can be used as parts. They can also provide the basis for various projects which involve running Linux, older Windows operating systems, vintage games or other programs.