Recommendations

Backup

See my backup guide.

Computer

See my buying a computer guide.

Printer

Laser printers are much cheaper than ink printers in the long run, even though they're more expensive to buy, because toner refills are much cheaper than ink refills.

If you don't need color or a built in scanner, get a Brother 2270dw. It a small, fast, 2-sided, laser printer, which can connect to wifi so it doesn't need to be near your computer. It's about $90. 

If you want a flatbed scanner (for books) and a document feeder (for scanning a stack of papers) built in, the Brother DCP7065DN looks good. It's $142 on amazon. A quick search indicates that it cost $0.018 / page in toner. It can connect to a network but doesn't have wifi. The only real downside is that it can only scan one side of each page at a time. This recommendation is based on some basic internet research, not personal experience (yet).

Apparently at least some Brother printers or toner cartridges stop printing after some number of pages, even if there's toner left. The toner light goes orange (when it should actually be red signifying error) and you can't print. Here's the fix for the 2270dw. You may be able to find something similar for the DCP7065DN.

This recommendation last updated 2014-02-09

Router

I've got an Asus RT-N12 which I bought new on ebay. I was planning to install the tomato firmware on it but couldn't get it working. The latest Asus firmware isn't bad. I'd probably recommend an apple airport express for non-technical users even though I've never used one.

This recommendation last updated 2013-07-12
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