Total posts : 45366
Lots of things can go wrong with old computers, particularly 10 year old computers. And lots of times they’re intermittent, which makes them hard to trace.
That’s why I suggested getting a new motherboard/cpu/memory combination, and reusing everything else from an old computer. You can pretty much tell if a power supply, CD, or hard drive is working. They either do or don’t. And by getting that new motherboard/cpu/memory, you’re pretty much eliminating any other problems.
I use multiple computers (many, many of them), and generally have at least one fail in a year (running them 24/7 tends to do that for a consumer-level products). All I do is rip out the motherboard, as stated, and rehook everything else up, and voila, new computer.
But then, as I said before, I don’t like putzing around – I did this kind of stuff for a living for a long time, and now I just want something up and running so I can do things on them.
Linux/Microsoft, whatever. Doesn’t matter. Use whatever you feel most comfortable with, but for the sake of $100 or so (unless you really don’t have that $100), I wouldn’t fool around. Your time is more valuable than that.