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I want to purchase a used or refurbished laptop and need to know what is important to have in a laptop. I know what I am looking for in a desktop but know laptops and notebooks are a little different. I want to be able to run Win 98 at least and have enough hdd space to load current large programs, such as MS Office, Quickbooks etc. What brands and models are good and which ones are weak? What am I looking for in the display properties? I would like to spend no more than $800. Any suggestions?

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How long is a road? :rolleyes:

I use this to illustrate a vague question. :D What's important in a laptop is very dependent on the use you intend to put the laptop to. I have a 3# Sharp laptop that I've used for a few years, I bought it because it was small. I carry it on trips, and I don't want another suitcase, just a computer that I can use. Other people want a large screen, DVD, floppy, etc. You need to define what your usage pattern is, then you can pick the attributes that are important to you.
 

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Well since you want a large hard drive to load the big programs, I think that should be your main thing. Office programs don't use up as much cpu or graphics as games tend too, so I wouldn't put them high on your list. Like Johnwill said, it will depend on what you are going to use it for.

As for where to find one, try some online places, maybe pricewatch.com not sure if they have laptops or not. I've seen some good deals at eletronics stores on open box items or return items. You can visit some local stores and look there.
 

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If you do a web search, there are a number of dedicated used laptop places. I have no direct experience with them, just pointing that out. :)
 
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