What to do with an old can't-use-HDD Dell D610?


Mar 9, 2012
I have a Dell D610 that is in perfect working order except that the internal hard drive connector apparently is dead. I've swapped out hard drives for a known good laptop HDD but it still doesn't recognize it.

I don't really need this laptop per se, but was wondering what I might do with it. Some ideas I had:

- Put chromium on a USB drive and make it into a DIY Chromebook. Unfortunately, it looks like Hexxah stopped making chromium images in April.

- Run a Ubuntu or something LiveCD on it. Not sure how well that would work, though I could use a USB drive for any storage needed.

- I've heard that there is a Windows 8 "Windows to Go" run-off-USB-stick option, though I suspect this old laptop may not be Win 8-compatible.

Any other cool ideas?
If you have 2 gig or more RAM in there, using a Linux boot disk could make it an OK media watching system, Netflix or something connected to a TV. Or set it up with a boot disk and donate to a homeless shelter or something to help people look for work online, a Linux bootdisk and a browser is all you really need for that.