Although it was certainly time to upgrade, I feel better about making the decision myself, rather than having the computer decide for me. Not only do I need a new computer, but I also have to upgrade all of my software. I have been working with older versions for so long that it is actually cheaper to buy new versions rather than upgrade the upgrades.
Small consolation for me that my oversized monitor is still good, as are the speakers. I think of the analogy of a house in that the windows are good but the roof and the basement (and the wiring) need to be redone. However, I should be able to work at lightning speed once everything is operational. Having spent the last few weeks using my web-based email service instead of outlook has meant that I can now send and receive emails but my history and contact list are residing on an external drive as backed-up material. I have been pulling data off that same drive and popping it onto a laptop that is not really equipped to run as my business computer.
The question here, I suppose, is do I run the computer into the ground or spend time and money checking and upgrading over time. How lucky do I feel?
Now, at least, I won't have to worry about taking a chance with luck. I have been figuratively kicking the tires and taking it for a test drive. It may not look as flashy as a new car but this is what earns me my bread and butter. Functional over sexy wins this time around.