To help answer this, supply a link to your model.
On many laptops I max out the RAM with help from crucial.com.
The hard drive is also a nice place to bump. I like the Hybrid Drives since that sidesteps a lot of issues and questions. Example at http://www.amazon.com/Seagate-Momentus-7200RPM-Hybrid-ST750LX003/dp/B00691WMJG
I have been using a eMachines laptop for the past, I don't know, like three or four years. I bought it back then for cheap of course and it has been a great laptop actually. I have changed the OS on this machine many times, from Windows Vista to Windows 7, then to Unbunto(spelling) back to Windows 7, to Backtrack 5 R3 and back again.
Anyway, I have heard that you can't upgrade or change anything on a laptop other than maybe the RAM. Which I need to do anyway. I ask because I want to get a nice computer, but buying a brand new computer is out of my budget (I am a college student with a min, wage job) . So I thought changing the hardware and buying a piece at a time would be better. I want to upgrade the RAM for sure, but upgrading the processor and Video Card would be awesome, which means I would probably need to change the mother board as well. I also need to change the USB ports because both of mine have stopped working. I know this computer has been through the ringer, I am just trying to find a solution to my problem.
I am getting into programming desktop applications and will soon start developing iOS and Android applications so I need something that I know can handle it well. I used to play League of Legends for hours on this computer (with all the visuals turned all the way down) that is about the only game that I could play on this machine, and a while back I played WoW that is about as far as this machine would go. I just wanted to give you something to measure how my this machine is.