Laptop or Desktop for the office

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06/11/2017

Hi Everyone,

My partner and I are in the process of buying a B&B.  One of the things that is not part of the FF&E is the office computer.  From you experienced folks, which is better to have...a laptop or a desktop computer?  This will be the computer that we use for the reservations, email, accounting records, etc.  Just curious as to what you think is best.

Thanks!

Matt and Dan

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06/06/2017

Go for a desktop. 

seashanty's picture
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06/02/2008

 I hate working on a laptop ... gave my mac book away and don't want one.

It's funny to me when people say they don't understand why anyone would buy a desktop. 

 Want, want, want a Microsoft Surface Studio 

 I much prefer a desktop (windows) all in one, with a very large touch screen and large standard keyboard to a laptop. I do a lot of marketing, website design, and graphics as well as writing and bookkeeping and my eyes need that big, clear screen ... I zoom in for detail on the images. It stays put, no shifting around. It lives in one place with my big a** printer and all my supplies that print out the most amazing things for me. 

 I use my iphone for just about everything mobile and also have a tablet. Data is in the cloud and I also have backups. I am so 'mobile' it's crazy. But  those mobile gizmos are no bigger than a tablet.

 'I, I, I' ... it's really about personal preference. 

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02/09/2017

I apologize, as I am late to the party.  We had a "first" yesterday (our 3d guest arrived on the same day our 2d guest left).  The wife, who handles most housekeeping, had some anxiety, but the transition went smoothly.

I don't know why anyone would buy a desktop computer these days.  Many/most laptops have better performance than what a small business needs -- and one then avoids the space a desktop requires.

But like Arks, I use my laptop like a desktop, by attaching a large monitor, a keyboard & track ball, all in my office.  For all practical purposes, my laptop is a desktop.  I also have an iPad that I locate on the kitchen counter.

My emails (both B&B & personal) go to both machines.  I check my iPad for emails often.  If a reply is necessary, I use my "desktop" with a real keyboard (and a big screen that I can see easily).

I am an old fart so I am not big on "the cloud."  I do think that online backup (Carbonite or a similar service) is important.

Good luck with your acquisition and new adventure.

 

 

 

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06/11/2017

Wow...I just want to thank you all for those replies!  I was never expecting to get so many helpful ones!  You all definitely gave us some things to think about.  I never even considered the cloud...or even hooking up external devices if we went the laptop route.  Thanks again!!

Matt and Dan

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10/10/2016

I have a desktop in my bedroom / office which I usually use to do book keeping and rates, then I use an old iPad which I use to access the same desktop around the house and the Phone when I'm at work and out of the house. Everything is stored in the cloud so that I can access it from anywhere which makes things easier. 

Generic's picture
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02/24/2011

We have laptops. Mine has a large screen attached, so that I have enough room to do things, since I do things like pricing and availability that take up screen real estate. When I travel, I use the laptop screen.

Most of what we do is on the cloud now, so the browser is the main part. Speed of PC isn't really much of an issue.

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Morticia's picture
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05/22/2008

We have both. I use a laptop and Gomez has a desk top. I always get the 17" laptop so I have a big screen for doing photos and website work.

That didn't help at all, did it!

I'd get what I'm most comfortable with. When we're on the road, I use my tablet to do reservations.

So, what you really want to be thinking about is where your data is stored. Locally or cloud.

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PhineasSwann's picture
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09/25/2012

I just can't get the work done on a small laptop screen. I need a desktop with a big workspace, especially since I often have to have more than one application open at one time.

My reservation system is web-based, so I can access it on the road from another laptop, my ipad or even my iphone. 

 

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Arks's picture
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05/22/2010

I have a laptop. 95% of the time it's on my desk and I attach it to a full sized monitor, real keyboard and mouse.

But when I travel, I unplug all that and use it as a laptop. So I have the same computer, and all my data, with me all the time.

At home it's set up to be just like a desktop, without taking up all the space a desktop takes. The only reason I would consider a desktop computer is price. For the same computing power, a desktop is generally cheaper.

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JimBoone's picture
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My answer is what do you use now in your personal life and what are you personally most comfortable using? For me I use them both, but starting out it was pencil, paper and a typewriter so budget what works best for you.

My aging laptop sits on the end table by the couch so I can work with one eye on work and one on the TV, I check mail, enter reservations and minor adjustments to website, then there is an all-in-one type desktop on the marble top dresser that serves as our front desk, bigger screen makes it easier for an old guy to see when I'm on the phone with a guest or a walk in and give a quick answer, but it is not in the best positon to sit and enter information, then there is a desktop in my bedroom office for entering accounting or real work (not used too often). We also have larger cell phones so it is possible to do some things away from the business.

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Highlands John's picture
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04/16/2010

I have a desktop and a ipad. I use the ipad mostly for replying to emails and handling bookings, it's easier to carry round the house and take with me when I'm away.

I use my desktop for things like accounts, maintaining our online presence (FB, website, TA, etc) just because these things are easier on a big screen (I have two screens attached to my PC). I also use the PC as a repository for all emails, every once in a while I'll load up Thunderbird and download all emails so I can store every email every guest has ever sent me.

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OnTheShore's picture
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08/28/2011

Just want to note that one can attach a large screen to a laptop as well -- you can set it up to either act as additional screen real estate "adjacent" to the laptop's built-in screen, or to mirror the laptop's screen (if you just want to see everything bigger). Of course you only have access to the large screen when you are in the office (or where-ever it is located), but then you can still take all of your data and software with you and work with the built-in screen, whenever and where-ever....

Of course the trend seems to be for software and data to all be moving to "the cloud,"  which in the end-game might make the question of desktop vs. laptop computer moot in the long run.

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gillumhouse's picture
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05/22/2008

I have a desktop in the office, in December acquired a laptop when my brother died, have an iPad, and a Kindle. I can access online reservation on all of them (if I have wifi. All accounts are only on the desktop.

Innkeep's picture
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06/04/2008

I made the switch to a laptop because I can take it with me when I go on vacation. The business records are with you all the time, assuming you have online backup. The laptops have all the bells and whistles that I can manage. 

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