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The value of old software?

tezza

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This posting was prompted by one on the Mac thread discussing the value of Mac software.

Just out of interest, is there a site/source somewhere that would-be sellers and collectors can go to to find out what software IS collectable. Mac or otherwise?

Are there particular titles for particular machines that people really seem to value?

Tez
 

Trixter

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There is not a lot of mac software floating around in the oldwarez community, so that would make most of it valuable (to people, not necessarily to a wallet). I myself only have about 800 cracked mac game titles, and I know there were at least 2000 or more (probably much more).
 

Unknown_K

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The old mac warez community used hotwire to move things around, not ftp sites so the mechanism is different. There is a retro newsgroup for old mac games/apps that get flooded with old software including games and posters do take requests. Apple people just think different I guess.

As far as I know there is little out there for pricing any mac software outside of current ebay pricing. For all intents and purposes it is cheap to collect if you can find it.

There are many more game collectors then there are app collectors it seems, even for the PC.
 

Ole Juul

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There seems to be places that sell old software. Some programs, like page maker for example can be really hard to find because they need to be installed from disks and people tend to throw those out. I have a feeling that unless you need a specific version or you need it now, a lot of old software is just passed along though. The real upscale prices come from having original disks and manuals for collection purposes. I see this site has an original IBM DOS 1.0 disk for 1250 and the manual for 495 - dollars!
 

barythrin

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As Terry pointed out in the other post, most loose software isn't worth much if anything. It's kind of a catch 22 as with lots of collecting. The more folks that know of the system, the more it may be worth but the more that were sold the less value they tend to have. So while a Commodore 64 is exceptionally known, so many were produced it'd be hard to get a good value for one unless you're selling it as a set/full configuration.

Operating systems are always good to have in general, I think they'll hold value in collecting. Popular games for systems I'd imagine would be good finds (i.e. anyone in elementary/middle school in the mid-late 80's played Oregon Trail on the Apple II). The SSI/TSR games seem to be holding their value as well. Though I only know some of these because it's what I've looked for myself.
 

Unknown_K

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The fact that pretty much everything is available on the net for free download kills sales of the real thing (why buy a utility when you can just download it).

I know quite a few people who pay money for hardware but usualy not a dime for software they collect.
 

barythrin

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I admit, that's a great argument and I've had that issue myself with the why pay argument but over the recent years I've somewhat regretted tossing the boxes of some games I really loved to save space and have gone after the boxed copies again. I guess it's a collector gene and just to amuse myself more so than value though.

I always have a hard time passing on boxed copies Civilization (original). I probably own two or three (after giving one to a friend) but that game was so addictive.

There have only been a few things I bought for collector value but even then do you trust shrink wrapped stuff now adays? I bought an original AD&D for Intellivision (shrink wrapped) since it was the same price as their open one, and kinda thought that to myself too "they could just shrink wrap the stupid thing" but the sales guy was going ape when he saw it and the other dude said yeah it was original. Still, no clue or proof.. and it kinda just gave me a copy I can't play lol.
 

Unknown_K

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Many years ago I tossed the boxes of my old DOS and early windows games and apps to save space, I still regret it.

Shrinkwrap doesn't mean much to me since that is the first thing I rip off when I get something, I buy to use not to mark something off a checklist and store it. I do understand the thrill of a box that has never been opened, I just won't pay much extra if anything for it.
 

patscc

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shrinkwrap

shrinkwrap

Unkown_K said...Shrinkwrap doesn't mean much to me
Me neither. Especially since there are sellers on eBay that have shrink-wrap at hand to gleefully add some perceived value to their item by shrink-wrapping it.
patscc
 

Unknown_K

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Me neither. Especially since there are sellers on eBay that have shrink-wrap at hand to gleefully add some perceived value to their item by shrink-wrapping it.
patscc

Nothing like a shrinkwrapped game that has massive shelf ware on the inside box.

I prefer opened boxed because people tend to show the contents, so you know if it is complete or not (some old app where the dongles are needed but missing).
 

VintageComputerman

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I have a large box of old apple software used in schools. Most is on 3-1/2 disk but also a lot on 5-1/4 floppy. I'd say several hundred floppies. Any value in these? Used by teachers and I suspect it was for the mac.
 

Unknown_K

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I have a large box of old apple software used in schools. Most is on 3-1/2 disk but also a lot on 5-1/4 floppy. I'd say several hundred floppies. Any value in these? Used by teachers and I suspect it was for the mac.

Probably for the Apple II (no mac used 5.25")? Some people like those school programs on the Apple II, maybe you should make a list of the originals.
 

Ole Juul

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The site I mentioned earlier has quite a bit of apple and mac software. Most of their stuff is in the 49-99 dollar category. I was hoping someone would comment on the company. Has anyone ever bought anything from them?
 

Raven

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Probably for the Apple II (no mac used 5.25")? Some people like those school programs on the Apple II, maybe you should make a list of the originals.

I have a small stack of these as well that I got with my Apple IIe, mostly by MECC (Minessota Education Computer Corporation [iirc])..
 

Unknown_K

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There is (or used to be) a ton of educational software around for the Apple II when the school systems ditched all their Apple II gear. I might have an educational title or two in my collection of boxed Apple II games but I don't realy collect them.
 

kiyotewolf

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value of old software

value of old software

OLD SOFTWARE IS VERY VALUABLE.

If anything, robust~ness, compact~ness are the two key factors driving older software.

I should know. I hacked for 30 days solid on an image editor (for sprites) in DOS for QBasic (or QuickBasic, pick yer flavor), which SMASHES INTO THE 64K ceiling for data/code.

That code is concrete solid (within reason), because I coded it specifically for the limitations of the system.

You get something like Nwingdoes, with it's VIRTUAL MEMORY, and you get SLOPPY CODE, poorly tested, the BETA is the FINAL RELEASE, and little to NO SUPPORT after it's released.

Point in case:

I have a Windows 3.11 MIDI editor program, and it runs without requiring you to register, it runs smoothly, it does it's job, and it is happy to go nini when you click the X.

You DON'T get a program that argues with you when you try to close it, beg for registration to get bandwidth lunch money, blue screens of death (unless yer drivers are off then yer screwed anyways), or bloat itself and take up MILES AND MEGABYTES AND GIGABYTES of excess space or try to load in SPY/SPAM/GLUT/SHOVEL wares on your computer without warning and WITHOUT PERMISSION.

I mean sheesh.. I would trade my NEW PALMTOP ACER WITH AN ATOM COMPUTER FOR a complete setup of an Apple ][E with AppleWorks and an Imagewriter (dot matrix ~ a COLOR DOTMATRIX WITH RIBBIONS AND I WOULD KILL MY SIBLINGS FOR IT), and I could type and file my papers with glee.

It worked.

It did.

It didn't beg you for money.

It wasn't huge like a bloated blue whale.

It ran.

You were happy.

You went nini, so did it.



'Nuff said.



Lock de la Lion aka Kiyote Wolf
 

Bobthearch

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What an enthusiastic post!

I feel similarly, except generally my preference is for software that's a bit newer, at least new enough to be on CD. Those Pentium I - III era games were great, and if I could play through one per week, there'd be enough to last a lifetime. Seems like so many games today are either copies of each other, or copies of those older graphical games.

And I keep a Windows 98 PIII set up just for the purpose of 'playing' with older software and operating systems: BeOS, various Windows versions, QNX...

Even on my new computer I still run Office 2000 exclusively for an office suite. That version was just about perfect - logically laid out, smooth and reponsive, and stable.

No interest in non-game software? Hardly. :) Would you believe that the science software we use each day at work dates to 1998-1999? Our drafting software is Autocad 2000. And, until last week anyway, Office 2000 was installed on each computer. There's just not much motivation to 'upgrade' when the old stuff works just fine, and the new stuff costs thousands of dollars.

Personally, I'm especially interested in old CAD programs, old science software, and old office programs. Unfortunately, that stuff almost never shows up at garage sales. :(

While not necessarily "vintage" by strict definition, the half-decade from 1995 to 2000 was certainly the "golden age" of modern home computing.
 

Chuck(G)

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While it's true that old assembly-based software could be made compact and fast, the problem was that it was the very devil to keep it up to date with hardware and operating system advances.

Moving my assembly code from 8 to 16 to 32 bits was almost painful. By comparison, the C code was mostly simply a recompilation. I suspect that interpreted BASIC probably doesn't have to be changed at all.

What doesn't seem to bother anyone, however, is how large even simple programs have become.
 
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