If, despite computer repair and efforts to update, your poor old PC needs to be laid to rest, there are a couple of important things to consider before pushing that clunker off your desk to make room for a shiny new one. 

First of all, don't forget about what information exists within the computer itself. Back up important files, email contacts, software license keys and even your internet profile.

Next, think about what information you don't want. Rid your computer of personal information, which can range from embarrassing photographs to financial documents that might contain your Social Security or bank account numbers. Delete them, but don't stop there. You'll need to use special software (many of which are free) to wipe out specific files, or, if you want to cover all your bases, your entire hard drive.

As to the actual disposal of the computer, don't just stick it in your closet to gather dust, because there are a few constructive ways to get rid of it.

Don't throw it away, because it contains materials that are terrible for the environment (it's even illegal in some states). But there are many free e-recycling programs, such as Dell's Reconnect, which will sometimes even pick up the computer at your house.

You can try to sell it, but keep in mind that in this case, parts such as the RAM chips and video cards may be worth more than the whole. If you're not sure how to take it apart, consider contacting a local Virginia computer repair service to see what they recommend.

Your other option is donating it to a school system, nonprofit or charity, which means you can do some good while making more space for the fun new high-tech stuff.