One of the things I don't like about Newegg is that thanks to their "Marketplace" it's not always obvious who you are buying from anymore (A similar problem also exists over at Amazon). I generally trust Newegg, but some of the retailers in the "Marketplace" not so much. If I wanted to buy from random people running a business out of their apartment in NJ I'd go over to eBay. Luckily though B&H now carries a lot of the stuff I'd normally go to Newegg for.
Actually, what happened is that Dell partnered with Goodwill to recycle any old computer that was donated to the store. While this isn't all bad, as I'm sure that Goodwill gets a fair amount of stuff that's basically junk, it also means that any newer/good hardware that gets donated also ends up getting scrapped. So the end result is that Dell has managed to eliminate one source of inexpensive used computers out there.
Though your best bet would be to just ask around, check craigslist, or keep an eye on some local dumpsters. I'm sure you could find an old P4 or even some early 64-bit hardware for free without too much trouble.
They can be a problem, but they are one of the few battery types that can be recycled for a profit by reselling the recovered materials. That helps keep them out the of the dump.
I wouldn't complain, but Microsoft claimed that every Vista-capable PC could run Windows 10, and that appears to be false.
That's actually blatantly false. Windows 8 and later require that the processor support the NX bit, whereas Vista and 7 do not. This pretty much excludes most 32 bit computers from being able to run Windows 10, so stuff like Socket 478 P4's and Athlon XP's which can run Vista or 7 can not be upgraded to Windows 10.
Why? The Home and Pro versions are almost identical, except for a small handful of few features that home users would never miss and limits that would never bother a home user*. It's really just a way for Microsoft to extract more money out of businesses for Windows while providing an almost identical product. It's actually pretty clever (or evil, depending on your perspective) if you think about it.
*I realize that Windows 7 Home has a 16GB limit which is pretty easy to run up against nowadays, but it's 5 years old now and Windows 8.1 Home has a 128GB limit which would be hard to hit with "consumer level" hardware.
It's very intentional, as Thinkpads have changed very little in appearance since the first ones came out in the mid 1990's years ago sporting 486 processors. That's over 20 years of laptops that are pretty much instantly recognizable as a Thinkpad by anyone familiar with them.
I for one like their simple, clean, no nonsense styling, and functional design (though Lenovo has been mucking with that a bit more than I like). But each to their own.
Most new laptops now are omitting the optical drive. It's getting to the point where if you require an optical drive your options are starting to look pretty limited, especially since the remaining models with optical drives tend to be the larger workstation/desktop replacement models. This is understandable, as I rarely use an optical drive anymore. On the other hand, the lack of USB ports is baffling.
Given that it's Oregon, there will be plenty of water just "dropping" in. I would invest in some large sheets of plastic and/or some tarps, and some buckets myself. Get a bunch of those chlorinated tablets that treat water, and while it may taste terrible, should be perfectly safe to drink. Now, things like food/gasoline might be a bit tougher to come by.
Don't forget IE for the ActiveX!
You do realize that Chrome comes bundled with its own built-in Flash plug-in, right? Unless you meant you installed one of the Chrome alternatives that strip it out (Opera, Comodo Dragon, etc.).
If you buy/lease a new car every few years, it will add up as you'll be paying $300-$500/mo indefinitely. If you buy a new car and drive it for 15-20 years until it's basically fully depreciated out, the cost spread out over all those years isn't that much more than the string of beaters you would have gone through in the same time span.
I have that, and while it helps, when you do have want to activate some flash widget/video/whatever, you'll end up still slowing your browser down.
I've actually found on Windows, IE seems to be the only browser that works well with Flash-heavy sites for long periods of time. Other browsers seem to either slow down, hang, crash, or have problems with the Flash plug-in crashing. Hopefully it won't matter soon anyway, as Flash seems less and less useful as time goes on and I don't even bother installing Flash on most of the computers I use anyway.
Chances are they'll just be converted into a "minimum maintenance road" which means that it won't be plowed and they'll only do the bare minimum to keep it passable. Given Iowa's climate, it may only take a few years before you'd want to have a 4WD or a high clearance truck to try and drive some of these roads as they'll quickly deteriorate and develop large potholes. It'll also be obvious which roads still get traveled and which ones go basically unused, which could help them decide what they want to do with them.
Does Seamonkey include an NNTP client? I remember using the one in Netscape Communicator way back in the day, until I finally forked out the money to buy Forte Agent. Good times.
Even if your Windows 7 license is "consumed", if it's the Pro edition, surely you would able to use the downgrade rights to reinstall Windows 7 (or 8)?