I’ve been asked by friends and family several times recently what to look for when looking for a new computer. Regardless whether you are looking for a laptop or desktop I believe there are a few guidelines that will help aid you in making your next computer purchase.
The key things to look for in a computer are:
Whatever system you choose, I would also encourage you to keep in mind the cost of replacing it. Not upgrading or repairing it, but completely replacing it. Practically this means that if you are going to choose between a $1200 system and a $600 system and the features are roughly the same (or even close) then I would take the $600 one.
As for software, specifically in regards to data security, I would recommended that you setup a Dropbox account and store your critical data there. This would allow you to backup and distribute the file automatically across multiple locations (including cell phones). If not Dropbox, then another cloud-storage service, but I’ve found Dropbox to be the best. Storing your critical data on a cloud-based storage system also makes replacing your system later a lot easier.