Environmental Protection Agency

Upgrade desktop computer hardware instead of replacing it

Government PCs are rarely if ever upgraded, but rather replaced. The government should purchase PCs that are designed to be upgraded instead of replaced. This could be accomplished by ensuring that newly purchased PCs have industry-standard motherboard form factors (e.g. ATX or BTX), and/or ensuring that the computers' motherboards support substantial RAM and processor upgrades beyond the original specifications. PC life cycles could be significantly extended without any loss of productivity. While there is a labor cost associated with upgrading PCs, but there is also a labor cost associated with deploying new PCs (hard drive images must be built and copied, files must be transferred, etc.). On the contrary, some upgrades (e.g. RAM upgrades and replacing a processor without replacing the motherboard) can be done with only a few minutes' labor, and without re-imaging the hard drive (i.e., less labor than replacing the entire PC). This "reduce and reuse" strategy is also consistent with EPA's mission.

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Idea No. 15613