Back in the old days when computer mice were ball-operated, at best they would last two or three years before the rubber ball started wearing down and you had to replace it. Optical mice – one of the best damn improvements to a hardware computer product ever mind you – cured all that.

It is not unlikely that some of you have optical mice that are over 5 years old. Possibly over 7 years old by this point.

Wouldn’t it suck if your mouse broke? Well, it’s going to happen at some point. And of course you’re going to seek out the exact same model of mouse you had, only to find it’s probably not available anymore.

Fortunately for you your favorite models are still available. If you use any of these mice below, I suggest buying at least one spare. Buy it, open once to make it works, then put back in the box until needed.

Microsoft Basic Optical Mouse (white, black)

This mouse has gone by several names of the years, and at present it’s called the Basic. Very cheap, very reliable, tracks well and is very comfortable to use.

Logitech G500

The G500 has never been cheap (it’s still $50 at the time of this writing), but when it comes to ultra-precise many-button mouse, you can’t do much better than this for the price. Ten buttons, laser optical with 5700 dpi resolution and most importantly it has a traditional shape most people are used to.

razer deathadder 1
RAZER DeathAdder

Some who read this will think, “I don’t want a ‘gamer’ mouse, much less one with ‘death’ in its name.” Reconsider that as this $50 mouse has it where it counts. When you want a mouse with only 5 buttons instead of the G500’s 10 with and has a high dpi (this one has 3500 dpi), you basically can’t do any better than this. Don’t be fooled by its appearance, as this mouse is very ergo-friendly and is very comfortable in the hand.

Logtech M570

Some of you are diehard trackball users, and if you’re one of them, you want an M570. It’s wireless and requires an AA battery, but that won’t bother you too much since a single battery can last almost a year-and-a-half in one of these.

Remember: As the tablet market increases, mice like the above will become less generally available, so you should buy a spare now while they’re plentiful.