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< I do hardware all day long, and the answer to the "should I upgrade my 5 year old machine" is universally "no" from where I sit.>

I appreciate your input.

I have already backed up my data (e.g. photos, music), but didn't remove the data from my hard disk. I don't have heavy memory users, such as video or games.

My concerns are the somewhat obsolete but useful software that I run, such as Microsoft Office (including Word and Excel) and early years of TaxCut, that I would like to keep using. I'm content with Windows XP because I find the more advanced versions cluttered (memory hogs) without real benefits. I don't want to have to re-buy Office.

I'm not looking for "blazing" performance, just reasonable speed. I'm also looking to not spend hundreds of dollars.

Thanks again,
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