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Misery, heartbreak, sorrow, and despair. No, I'm not talking about adolescence; I'm referring to what happens when you're stuck with a PC from Hell. Systems that were overpriced and underpowered, parts that failed two days after the warranty expired, marathon phone calls with brain-dead tech support staff--over the years we've suffered more than our share of ills, and so have millions of other innocent PC users.
But picking these 10 Worst PCs of All Time wasn't as easy as it sounds. First we had to set a few ground rules. Number one, we focused strictly on desktops. (We'll leave the flaming/exploding laptops for another occasion.) Two, these machines had to have shipped to consumers--no vaporware or concept computers allowed. Tres, we decided to ignore systems we've kicked around elsewhere (like the IBM PCjr, the Gateway 10th Anniversary PC, and the FreePC, all part of our 25 Worst Tech Products of All Time story), and home in on a different batch of turkeys.
After that, it was a matter of polling PC World editors, past and present, and debating the demerits of all the systems that caused us migraines over the years. We had to resort to Indian leg wrestling matches to settle on the final ten. (See the list of the worst.)
Of course, maybe you had a good experience with one of these machines. Or perhaps you had a system that isn't on this list but was so nightmarish Freddy Krueger would be scared to turn it on. If so, we want to hear about it. Look for a Comment link or go to our Forums.