I am sitting in front of a Dell Latitude D610. It is running with the drive and OS taken from a Dell Inspiron 1200 because its own hard drive had locked up terminally.

Given the task of maybe saving both, or make one out of the two, or just scrap both, I managed to rescue the machine with the highest spec, but it hangs by a thread. The XP torpedo makes twenty passes before the Welcome screen shows up, and that is not good. I have seen hard drives fail before they ever saw fifteen passes, so this one really is spinning on borrowed time.

It is a solid machine, built quite well and with everything inside still working as designed, not bad for a laptop purchased in October of 2005. The warranty ran out in 2008.

The screen has a lip around it which fits neatly over the outer edge of the keyboard and wrist rest which makes it very resistant to twisting motion when it is raised and lowered. It doesn’t look sleek like new models, but there is no doubt that it has constituted to the longevity of the LCD panel.

There are four USB ports, two on the side and two on the back panel along with a VGA, LPT and 15 pin serial port. Between the keyboard and screen is a simple array of controls including the power button, volume controls plus mute, and lights for other functions. It is built to last, which is a lot more than can be said for new stuff.

Now it faces its final few months. In April 2014, XP Home will no longer be supported, and there is a good chance that it could become a target for every bit of malicious code and attacks ever designed to bring down XP. Internet Explorer 8 is as good as it gets and was never one of the all time strongest gates. Best not to shed a tear for it though. It is slow, has a tiny 40gb IDE hard drive, indifferent graphics and a keyboard which is not easy to see in anything other than bright light.

Anyway, I have fixed it up, cleared all of the malware accumulated during its stay at an all Canadian summer cottage, cleaned it all, and it is once again running as Dell intended. I will not charge very much for doing the work because it has limited life, but I am quite pleased that it cleaned up so well. I wonder if the laptop or tablet on which you are viewing this post will be working as well as the D610?