Laptop accessories can add to your enjoyment of your laptop and can make your laptop easier to use. But the most important reason for using accessories should be to extend the useful life of your laptop. We would want to avoid a major breakdown that would render your laptop useless or a minor breakdown which would require cash outlay for buying alternative replacement for the defective part.
Perhaps the most important investment in accessories that you can make for your laptop is to buy and external USB hard disk. You can use the external hard disk for all the data that you create and leave the internal hard disk for storage of operating system and application software files. This way, there will be less pressure on the internal hard disk and it will hopefully last longer.
Heat is the number one enemy of the hardware components inside your laptop. A laptop cooler would be of help in reducing the heat that can accumulate inside your laptop and endanger electronic components and the hard disk. Coolers without fans are perfect to use when the weather is not so hot while those with fans could prove of immense help during warmer weather. You should avoid cheap coolers that contain low quality fans that start to vibrate after one year of use. Change your cooler when you hear humming sounds from the cooler fans.
Your laptop's keyboard is a fragile equipment that is not as durable as that of the desktop laptop and yet is more expensive to replace. To avoid early breakdown of your laptop's keyboard, buy a USB keyboard and use it when you're using your laptop at home. You can be less careful when using the USB keyboard since you can easily replace it at a lesser cost.
A USB mouse can be easier to use than the built-in pointing device on your laptop. You can use it when using your laptop on a flat surface and work faster and more conveniently too. The only drawback would be that it could help drain your battery faster but if you're inside a house or a building you can always connect your laptop to an electrical outlet.
Using a headset instead of the built-in speakers on your laptop would help conserve battery power and prevent speaker vibrations from affecting your internal hard disk. If you really can't help but hear loud music, then you can buy an external speaker but you must position the speakers as far as possible from your laptop and preferably on another location separate from the table where you are working.
The internal DVD writer in your laptop is not designed for heavy duty disc writing. You should use it only for making backups of your data into DVD discs. If you plan to do a lot of disc writing, then you should buy an external DVD writer which you can use for writing to a lot of discs or making several disc copies for your family or friends.
You will surely have very important personal files on your laptop that you want to have a backup of just in case you experience a major breakdown and are unable to use your laptop. Use a USB flash disk to store important personal and confidential files from your laptop. This pen drive should not be left lying around nor should it be used as transport mechanism for the office files you're working on. It should be kept under lock and should only be used for backup purposes.
You should not buy accessories because they are cool to have or they look great on your laptop. Investment-wise what you want to happen is to be able to use your laptop for the longest time possible without having a major breakdown. Sensible accessories are those that help extend the useful life of your laptop and at the same time may be make your use of your laptop more convenient and enjoyable.
Read my article on a common sense approach to investing in a laptop at: http://laptopwriting.blogspot.com/2010/01/common-sense-approach-to-investing-in.html.
Read my other article on whether your laptop is getting obsolete or not at: http://laptopwriting.blogspot.com/2011/12/is-your-laptop-getting-obsolete.html.
Read my other article on laptops may yet survive despite the tablet onslaught at: http://laptopwriting.blogspot.com/2011/12/laptops-may-yet-survive-in-spite-of.html.
Read an article on free useful programs that your computer should have at: http://sites.google.com/site/thetechnicaljournal/free-useful-programs-that-your-computer-should-have.
Read an article on how you can turn your old desktop equipment into peripherals for your new laptop at: http://sites.google.com/site/thetechnicaljournal/turn-your-old-desktop-equipment-into-peripherals-for-your-laptop