Most students find a laptop so much more convenient than a desktop.
A desktop computer may be better if you have certain specialist needs, for example you are:
If you will be using the computer as most students do then a laptop will suit you. It takes up less desk space, is easier to travel with, and some of the lighter ones can be taken with you to use around the University.
As a rough rule of thumb, if your computer is five years old then you should replace it. Anti-virus software and security updates may not be available for it, and new software and hardware may not work on it.
There is no need to get a new system if you are happy with your current one. You can often improve the performance of an old computer by using the disks that came with it to wipe its hard-disk and install a fresh copy of Windows. (Be sure that you have backup copies of any valuable data before doing this!). Buying some extra memory (RAM) is another good way to improve the performance of an old computer.
There is no need to replace a computer less than three years old unless it is broken.
Think about two main things:
Any brand new computer you buy today will be more than adequate to run a standard operating system, connect to the Internet, and use for word processing.
The most important factor in how fast the computer runs is normally the amount of RAM (memory). If buying a new system you should make sure it has 1GB or preferably 2GB of RAM to ensure it will perform well.