And then my father-in-law bought a new computer. Jennifer was going up for a visit, and he said that he would give us his old computer (complete with flat screen monitor) if we would help him move the data from the old to the new computer.
So the new-ish computer cost us an external hard drive that we also got to keep.
A couple friends got me a better graphics card, and I was off with new games.
We also did some hard drive work on it. I had learned about switching out hard drives long before when I had been given an old hard drive from a company that I had been doing part time work at. The important thing I learned was keeping the red wire of the ribbon next to the power cable. Otherwise while it plugs in, it won't work. I also used that knowledge for switching out a dead CD-ROM drive on a previous computer. This computer also came with a DVD-RW drive. Not that I had any use for it other than doing data CDs at the time.
So I was up to SimCity 4 by this time. I also had played a few of the Lord of the Rings/Middle Earth real time strategy (RTS) games.
And later the problems came up. he computer began to make noise. Mostly just a background hum. And I had to upgrade the USB ports. It had 6 (3 in various locations including two cards), but they were all original USBs and so I upgraded them to 2.0.
So last autumn I got my new laptop.