So you are thinking of upgrading your computer...

Maybe you're at that point where you think an upgrade will add new life to your computer, or you just have to have that latest piece of hardware that just came on the market. Or maybe you are lusting after that "shiny new computer" on display at your favorite computer store.

The decision to either upgrade or purchase a new system isn't that complicated. The most important aspect you must look at is the end result you wish to achieve. 

Are you looking for a faster system, or more storage space? Or maybe you would like to run more programs at the same time. 

The most cost-effective upgrade you can do to your system is add additional RAM.

This will increase the apparent speed of your programs and allow you to run more programs at the same time. If you have less than 8GB of RAM, consider adding memory.

If you are thinking of adding more storage space, think about swapping out your hard drive or adding a second hard drive to store more programs or data files. A re-writable drive makes an excellent storage device for data files you don't use frequently or for pictures and music files.

If you are looking to do more that one of these, with the price of low-end systems at the $400-$600 price range , you might want to consider purchasing a newer system (don't go below the $600 price point or you will be replacing it sooner than you think). Figuring the cost of parts, time spent installing and troubleshooting, this is often a more effective solution.