Where do I go to fix an ill-gotten laptop?
November 13, 2006 1:44 AM   Subscribe

Where do I go to fix an ill-gotten laptop?

1. A Sony Vaio, the kind that's about half the size of a regular laptop, that has been dropped and no longer starts up (and could use a new battery as well), bought off a junkie a couple years back.

2. A Toshiba Satellite that is missing the pin in the AC Adapter port (as well as an AC adapter and a plug), that was given to me by a friend who got it when someone left it at her house over a year ago.

I don't know if it's worth my time to fix these or not, or if I could get into trouble. I could really use an operational laptop however and I can't afford a new one.
posted by elr to Computers & Internet (8 answers total)
Best answer: You're not going to get into trouble by taking these laptops to a store. Bench techs don't do background checks.

That said, if you're technically minded you can probably buy all the replacement parts you need from eBay - including odd ball parts like trim pieces and controller boards or what have you.

Then again if laptop surgery is beyond you a better alternative would be negotiating with an independently owned computer shop. Maybe offer to give them one if they get the other working for you?

It's a longshot, but you maybe able to get the manufacturers to repair one or the other for you. You won't know until you reference the serial numbers with them either through their websites or by contacting them directly. I doubt either has a warranty and if they do it may still cost you labor to have them fixed...
posted by wfrgms at 2:13 AM on November 13, 2006

Best answer: The small Sony is a Pentium 233 equivalent, probably running Win98 on a 4GB drive, with 64 MB of memory. Not worth buying a battery, these days. Will never run 2000/XP/Vista, because hardware is non-standard, and there will be no drivers.

The Toshiba would probably require a motherboard replacement to fix the power port issue. You'd probably need to get a battery for it, too, if you wanted to use it mobile. Fix + battery + AC adaptor = Quite Probably More Than It Is Worth.

You'd be better off, probably to spend your money on a used or refurbished machine.
posted by paulsc at 2:18 AM on November 13, 2006

posted by orthogonality at 4:14 AM on November 13, 2006

Where do I go to fix an ill-gotten laptop?

Same place you go to get a regular laptop fixed.

I don't know if it's worth my time to fix these or not,

Depends on what you want to do with them. If you're looking for something just to write on and breeze thhrough the net, maybe.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 4:20 AM on November 13, 2006

If you're really worried, uh, sand off the serial #. Then part them out and sell them on Ebay. You could probably sell the hard drives for enough to buy a crappy, but working, laptop off Ebay.
posted by cellphone at 6:11 AM on November 13, 2006

No. Laptops are insanely expensive to repair. I would only suggest getting one fixed if it's top of line or if it has a warranty. Chances are that if you have the later, you'll have the former. And in this case, I don't see you having either.
posted by jmd82 at 7:28 AM on November 13, 2006

"Will never run 2000/XP/Vista, because hardware is non-standard, and there will be no drivers."

Wrong on all counts, excepting Vista.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 8:05 AM on November 13, 2006

I cannot understand why someone should say your Sony viao is probably running Win98 because its small. I have got one only 2 years old with a 10 inch screen. As a matter of interest the hard drive went on it. I got it fixed with a new one, but cost a lot of money, 270 pounds hard drive and 30pounds for fitting it
posted by Towyntravel at 12:50 PM on November 17, 2006

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