Weekend Open Forum: What legacy hardware do you still use?

By on May 11, 2012, 6:30 PM

Many of us have heard the saying about hardware being outdated as soon as you buy it. It can be rather frustrating to purchase a brand new setup with your hard earned money only to have something else launch a month later that’s faster or better, but that’s just how the hardware game is played.

The good news is that your “old” hardware is still very usable and likely will be for quite some time. But sooner or later, hardware of all type will reach that dreaded end-of-life stage; that is, if it survives that long.

Things like the 3.5-inch floppy drive, a PS/2 mouse or keyboard, PCI cards and 56k modems – all of these were cutting edge at one point but Father Time has since caught up to them. Heck, one could even argue that the optical drive isn’t a necessity anymore as evident by a number of notebooks and Ultrabooks shipping sans DVD drive.

With this week’s open forum, we would like to hear if any of you still use legacy hardware on a daily basis. Whether it’s one of the technologies listed above or something completely different, if it’s outdated we want to know!

User Comments: 72

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Lurker101 said:

PS/2 mouse with ball

Lurker101 said:

Actually, would still regularly using a Commodore Amiga A600 count?

ikesmasher said:

the oldest piece of PC tech in use in my house is a phenom 1.

Probably is my hp vf15, but it works all the same anyway.

Wendig0 Wendig0, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I have a dot matrix printer that still gets used regularly, other than that all my tech is up to date.

mailpup mailpup said:

I have an HP inkjet printer with a parallel port connection I still use. I also have a floppy drive installed in all my PCs along with a PS/2 mouse and keyboard. I even have a zip drive in one of my active PCs.

TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

My rig is pretty cutting edge, but I still have both a blu-ray and regular dvd burner installed. The regular dvd will go away with my next build and it remains to be seen how long the blu-ray will hold out.

H3llion H3llion, TechSpot Paladin, said:


Oldest piece of tech, hard to tell without going through the garage/loft cleaning but most likely my PS1. In my PC, I guess the DDR2 ram :3

Guest said:

A BluRay Drive... -_-

davislane1 davislane1 said:

I still use a 3D interface to control my workstation. Upgrading to a current generation bio-neural hybrid as soon as I can get the cash together though.

davislane1 davislane1 said:

Damn! Posted to the wrong time period. Please disregard...

scumbag said:

I've got an Audigy 2 ZS soundcard in my PC

The reason I still use it is the very beautiful & functional front bay with loads of inputs & outputs.

PC nerd PC nerd said:

I've got a 99MHz Pentium single core processor with 128MB DDR RAM, a GeForce 6200e AGP graphics card and a 16GB hard drive.

I am Badman?

Also got a computer with Athlon 4400+ 2.3GHz Brisbane, 2GB DDR2 800MHz, GeForce 8500GT and a 300GB hard drive. But that's not particularly old.

Current is Phenom 955 OC 3.8GHz, 8GB 1600MHz DDR3, Sapphire 6850 1GB OC 980/4680MHz and a Samsung 830 64GB SSD.

Tgard said:

I still use my PS2 Microsoft Natural Keyboard (1997 or 8 maybe). Works great and it's what I am used to. One system has a PS2 trackball, DDR2 and still has a floppy drive that hasn't been used in years.

I have used and transferred my SoundBlaster X-Fi Platinum Fatality-Live Drive PCI, to the last 3 systems I have built. Still works great but airflow sucks with the Live Drive.

Not to long ago I ditched a SCSI card and 1GB SCSI drive that I always used for a swap drive and temporary drive. Worked great for working with editing graphics and really was pretty fast to have all my temporary files, caches, swap files and using it as a working directory for everything that needed a working temporary directory. ie. media conversion etc.

techanswers1 said:

I use a first gen icore 5 450m laptop form HP that is uses a vga output for a projector that needs a hdmi output not a vga so vga port is obsolete and needs to be out of all laptops with digital support (except for companies)

Guest said:

Three legacy pieces of hardware I use quite frequently:

1. Logitech TrackMan Marble: the best trackball ever!

2. Plusdeck 2C: internal audio cassette deck to record cassettes into the computer. Is the same size as a CD drive, is built in on my desktop computer. Works great!

3. Cuecat: actually, a reworked Cuecat scanner that scans barcodes for computer input. Sits on top of my desktop computer and is used whenever I need to!

Technochicken Technochicken, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I use a 12 year old PS/2 keyboard, and up until recently a 12 year old 15" LCD as my third monitor.

Guest said:

I still have an Apple iie floating around that gets used occasionally along with a plethora of legacy equipment from the late 80s. We even have a "laptop" that is about 6 inches thick with a 7-8 inch screen on it.

Guest said:

A working athlon xp 2000+ with 256 mb ram and radeon 9600 xt. :D

Guest said:

Well something I use daily would be my keyboard with is AT keyboard and I have an adaptor to PS/2.

Fairly regular I have an Amstrad CPC464 sitting on my desk next to me complete with greenscreen awesomeness of the GT64 Monitor

Guest said:

- Cyrix PR200 desktop. 166MHz and 96MB of EDO RAM in all of its glory.

- PS/2 mice (some optical and some ball) and keyboards. There was a serial port mouse on the Cyris that sadly died a couple months back and got replaced by a USB mouse.

- 52x CD-ROM drive

- HP DeskJet 940c printer hooked up via parallel port. Has a USB cable, though. Printer still runs strong.

- 5.25" floppy drive, though I probably should be backing my media up.

killeriii said:

My WHS is powered by a pentium 4 socket 478.

dmill89 dmill89 said:

Every PC I have still has a 3.5" floppy drive. I rarely use them but they are cheap so why not, they do come in handy every now and then (small files, BIOS updates, etc.) . I also still have a track ball on my main rig (I've always preferred trackballs to standard mice). My old (now retired) server has a 5.25" floppy and a DDS tape drive in it. I've still got a K6-2 500mhz system that I use for DOS programs every now and then.

Guest said:

I still have an old Dell running Win98se with a Pentium 133mhz, 64MB EDO Ram, 2.5GB hdd, 10/100 Nic, 3.5" floppy, and most importantly... 5.25" floppy. It's used primarily when I have a customer that has 5.25" disks that need data pulled off.

hitech0101 said:

LG dvd rom yup its only a dvd rom cannot even burn dvds.

psycros psycros said:

I've got an Audigy 2 ZS soundcard in my PC

The reason I still use it is the very beautiful & functional front bay with loads of inputs & outputs.

I have a pair of Audigy IIs. One is a ZS but didn't come with a front plate, oddly enough. I've been through like 5 or 6 systems with them. I have yet to find onboard surround that actually works correctly. Best cards Creative ever made.

Emexrulsier said:

In a way isn't VGA legacy nowadays :d

Anyways still using my IDE pioneer slot loading drive. Its slow but its slot loading and was the first ever piece of hardware I modded. I changed the green LED to blue something back then was so rare to see blue leds.

ps2 keyboard. pci sound card all still in use. Until last week lads at work were using a digital camera that used floppy disks (sony mavacia)

Guest said:

My 6-button Microsoft Plug & Play Sidewinder USB game controller from 2001 which I bought for around $16 if memory serves. The thing has fallen on concrete and wooden floors many, many times. Sometimes a button gets stuck here and there usually on the shoulder buttons but nothing a good ol' fashion shake'n spank can't fix. But for functionality, still fully 100% operational.

Guest said:

use still a few ps2 mouses, because they can wake my pc up from hybernation mode which I find most USB powered mouses cant, same to get in to the bios at start up with old PS2 keyboards , wireless mounted keyboards cant do that most of the time.

scumbag said:

Ahhhhh, I have one of those as well!

I can't see any reason to get rid of it, things are pretty much the same joystick wise 10 years on.

gwailo247, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

I basically ended up putting back together my turn of the century PC, and am running Linux on it. And while it has some issue with very large HD video files, it runs very fast, and works very well for basic computing needs.

Benny26 Benny26, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I use a PS2 keyboard (wireless). I tried a USB one once and it just kept failing, so I went back to the old trusted way and haven't really looked to change yet.

I mean, the keyboard I use still has the same batteries in it that came with it when I bought it (nearly 8 years ago now). It's never let me down.

Guest said:

Hah! I'm using SB Live! 24bit. Reasons? Couse it sounds pretty good.

Also I have ps/2 keyboard (very good gaming washable keyboard) and sometimes HP Jet printer, made in 1996 and pluged to PC with LPT connection.

Guest said:

I was using an original Microsoft Natural keyboard (estimated 10+ years old) with a PS2 connection up until a couple weeks ago. Traded it out only because I saw a sale on a modern Microsoft Natural keyboard with programmable keys

Rage_3K_Moiz Rage_3K_Moiz, Sith Lord, said:

A Dell Optiplex 520 functions as my Linux mess-around box. That's about the oldest PC I've got that still works; not completely a legacy machine as such (I.e. it's not over a decade old, IIRC), but certainly not cutting-edge or mainstream either.

Guest said:

USB 1...yeah I know.

Guest said:

A thread without a troll is so boring so... I have NO legacy hardware cuz I'm 1337! yay me rofl

sapo joe said:

I have a legacy PC working and running Windows 7x64 Ultimate!

It's an Athlon x64 3000+, with 2gigs of DDR Ram, and a Geforce 6800Gt. Still play games, use internet, and more with it, as it's my parent's house computer!

cmbjive said:

Since I can't afford a new card at this time I'll be using some old ATI 1900 XTX's. Yeah, they won't run The Old Republic, but they'll run Neverwinter Nights and Diablo II.

Scshadow said:

A thread without a troll is so boring so... I have NO legacy hardware cuz I'm 1337! yay me rofl

There has already been trolls in this thread. Read the part where blu-ray is being considered as legacy hardware. Of course physical media isn't dead. It might seem that way to spoiled city B****** who have 50 mbps download speed or more. Anyway, No legacy hardware here. My setup is pretty new. I don't even own much legacy hardware anymore. Got scared I was becoming a hoarder one day and just went and threw it all away.

Guest said:

/troll Physical media IS dead /troll

Guest said:

cant really call ps/2 legacy until USB runs NKRO native for keyboards.

I have a Leopold TKL that I use the ps/2 for, to have NKRO and wouldn't have it any other way.

tonylukac said:

At the library I worked at they use parallel port laser scanners exclusively to check all books in and out.

Guest said:

Same as above. I love tech, so the last thing I want to do is hold onto old hardware and contribute to holding back its progress.

Guest said:

Still using a Microsoft Optical Trackball I purchased back in 2000. I have another in the closet if this one ever dies. Best peripheral I've ever owned.

scorpian007 said:

I'm still using my X-Fi Fatal1ty PCI card from 2005

Guest said:

ps/2 mouse and keyboard

(I don't really know if the ps/2 port is a legacy hardware since it is still found even in today's z77 mobos.)

captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

Does my eMachines T-5026 count? There seems to be some novelty claimed for an eMachines still working after 7+ years......

/troll Physical media IS dead /troll
You know, tech forums aren't akin to Roman Catholicism, wherein "admission absolves guilt"...... Trolling is just plain wrong, which is why I've enjoyed it these many years

Guest said:

I have a paper shredder that still works very well and it is at least 15 years old. I have lots of old computer hardware from the 90s piled in boxes in a spare room. As for legacy hardware I still use, I have a Pentium 3 hooked up as a file server, it still works well and fast running an old version of SUSE... Apart from that, I have no other old computers actually running.

ET3D, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Nothing I can think of. Sure, I have lots of old stuff lying around, but nothing really old in use. Just looked up the release date, and the Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000 may be the oldest thing that I still have in use.

Guest said:

my pc is 6 months old so...my phone has to be the oldest piece of tech I use. (iphone 3G).

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