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When Should You Move Your PC?

Counter to popular myth, even a desktop PC can go mobile whenever it wants. Of course, you can’t stow it with your other carry-on items on a plane, but if you’ve been challenged to a multiplayer network game at someone’s apartment or you’re moving to a new home, you’ll find that your PC enjoys chaperoned trips (rather like a dog, without the tongue out the window).

When you’re ready, consider these guidelines that you should follow when moving your PC:

  • Never move your PC until it’s completely powered down. In this case, move means any movement whatsoever (even nudging your PC’s case a few inches across your Desktop to dust).

    Even laptop computers and external hard drives shouldn’t be jolted or jerked around while they’re running. Many PCs have only a handful of moving parts, such as fans, DVD recorders, and hard drives — but brother, any movement while the latter two are still spinning carries the possibility that you can shorten the drive’s operational life. Always give your PC at least ten seconds after it shuts down before you pick it up.

  • Never set your PC upright in a seat or on the floor of your car. You’ve seen the videos of crash test dummies — and your beloved digital friend doesn’t have a car seat in case you come to a sudden stop. You can use seatbelts to secure your PC in a vehicle, but it’s just easier to lay your PC’s case flat on the floor of your vehicle.

    The same also goes for your monitor, which is also dangerous (for itself and your head) when airborne for short distances.

  • Use your towel. If your PC has to ride on top of a surface that might scratch your case, wrap your PC in a towel or blanket to protect its finish.

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