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Cleaning Your Computer

This entry is part 2 of 2 in the series cleaning

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Is your computer making noises or humming? Is dust collecting visibly on the external fan surface? Is your machine running hot or shutting itself down for no apparent reason? Have you gone more than two months without cleaning your machine? If you have answered yes to any of these questions it may be time to clean your machine.

Dust inside your computer can lead to component failureRead More, fan failure, and slow performance. Keep your machine running smoothly and safely by taking the time to dust the interior. Don’t wait until a fan dies and your machine overheats with possibly irreversible damage to your hard drive, video card or motherboard.

Most people take the maintenance of their software seriously, running virus scans and installing protective software to guard against viruses, malware and trojans. In fact we highly recommend Microsoft Security Essentials to all of our clients which is absolutely free, made to integrate with your Windows operating system and easy to use. But when it comes to the hardware most people do not think about it until it is too late or they are intimidated by the thought of taking their machine apart. Continue reading

How to keep kids safe online.

This entry is part 1 of 1 in the series Kids Safety

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If you have young children who use a PC at home there are a number of steps which you can take to keep them safe and which allow you to monitor the web sites that they are browsing. One of the easiest way is to set up ” Microsoft family safety” which is a suite of free programs which can help you restrict and monitor your children’s online activity. Continue reading

Need to upgrade you Ram??

This entry is part 1 of 1 in the series Memory

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Computerization in every field has become a need of the hour today. With the growing requirements of data storage facility by all professional, the computer also requires up gradation on regular intervals. Hardware & software like Computer RAM, USB memory, pen drives and flash drives require sophisticated & expert treatment.

Most of us are not very clear with the concept that helps in better performance of the computer. The quickest way to speed up your computer is by adding more computer RAM to your system.This will surely leave your data processor to run programs much faster as computer RAM is considered to be the primary storehouse of all information when you are applying it. Capacity like 128MB, 256MB and 512MB are considered to be outdated, but when you are looking for premium quality performance, your computer needs latest versions of memory modules which range from 1GB to 8GB RAM.

The two types of RAM available are DRAM (Dynamic Random Access Memory) and SDRAM (Static Random Access Memory). The process of storing data in these two Ram type is different. Though SRAM is considered to be much faster in processing and does not even require being refreshed again & again, DRAM is more popular in terms of usage because it is cheaper in cost.

As we all know now that Computer RAM is the largest storehouse of information in the computer, it is the temporary house for storing

current data which is in use, that is why the information can be loaded much faster. However, it is not the permanent storage of the information and the same is lost when the system is switched off. In case the information had to be read directly from the hard disk, it would have made the computer very slow. Continue reading

How Often Should You Clean the Dust Out Of Your Computer?

This entry is part 1 of 2 in the series cleaning

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The frequency of how often you should clean the dust out of your computer (or laptop) may vary depending on the environment it is used in.

Annual or quarterly cleanings may be acceptable for most machines, while monthly cleanings may be better suited for computers used in areas where there are pets, smokers, a lot of dirt/dust, or if the computer is used on carpet or bed.

Benefits of Keeping Your Computer Dust-Free

Keeping your computer free of dust build up will ensure that your machine is getting the proper air-flow to keep cool.  Cleaning the dust out of your computer on a regular basis can help prevent (or resolve) overheating problems, reducing the chances of hardware failure stemming from cooling issues. Continue reading

FINDING TECH BARGAINS

This entry is part 1 of 1 in the series Gadgets

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As a self-professed Nerd, I can attest to one thing: technology is expensive. Now that many back-to-school lists include computers, mobile devices or parts to rehab an ailing family PC, the fall has become a good time to find tech bargains since stores compete to get your business. You can save a few bucks, if you know some “insider” tips.

1. Comparison shop.
There are some great bargain consolidation sites that gather all the best deals from across the Internet and post them in one place. Even if you have your heart set on getting the product at a local retailer, sites like SlickDeals.net and DealNews.com will at least let you know whether or not you’re getting a reasonable price at the “brick and mortar” store.

Users submit deals that they find to SlickDeals and when the post gets a high enough rating (by others confirming that the deal is legit) it gets moved up to the top of the page.

DealNews collects the best deals on Computers, Electronics, Home and Office and more and posts them in an easily searchable format. This is one reason I prefer this site to my old favorite, techbargains.com, which is a little scattered if you’re looking for something specific. Items are posted with photos and detailed descriptions, including any necessary coupon codes to get the deal, allowing you to quickly find what you’re looking for at a great price.

2. Go where the Nerds go.
Ask any Nerd where they buy computer equipment and gadgets and they will most certainly list two sites that you’ve probably never heard of (unless you’re a closet Nerd yourself): Newegg.com and TigerDirect.com. Continue reading

How To Avoid Being Hooked By A Phishing Scam

This entry is part 1 of 1 in the series spyware

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Has this ever happened to you? You open an “official-looking” email that looks like it’s from your bank, credit card, etc. The message is dire — someone may be messing around with your account, and only clicking on a link to “correct” or “verify” your account information will save you. Hurry! Quick! Do it now! Without even thinking about it, fear of loss drives you to click on the link and supply the information requested (and breaking one of the cardinal rules of online security in the process).

SNAP! You’ve just been reeled in… by a phishing scam. (Don’t feel too bad… lots of smart people fall for the same thing all of the time.) Why? Continue reading

NEW INTERNET EXPLORER VULNERABILITY FOUND

This entry is part 3 of 3 in the series Browser

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Researchers at FireEye security have discovered a vulnerability in all current versions of Microsoft’s Internet Explorer that would allow a “threat actor” to run code on a target’s system without their permission. According to FireEye, this security “hole” is being used to attack financial and defense organizations in the U.S.A.

Shortly after the vulnerability was discovered, FireEye passed their findings on to Microsoft, who subsequently posted a security advisory regarding the bug. Microsoft recommends “enabling a firewall, applying all software updates, and installing antimalware software.”

However, other organizations advise more dramatic measures. The threat is so serious that the U.S. Government has issued a statement advising people not to use Internet Explorer. This is one of the only times the Department of Homeland Security has issued such a warning.

Need help switching browsers? our nerds make it secure! Continue reading

HOW TO GET BETTER TECH SUPPORT

This entry is part 12 of 13 in the series Education

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Despite my “Nerd Dude” credentials, I’ve had to call technical support many times in my life, and I can’t say that it’s always been a pleasant experience. Over the years, I’ve discovered a few things that can make the experience less painful. The next time you need to make that call, here are some ways to assure it’ll go more smoothly.

Computers, routers, printers and, frankly, most electronic devices, can get buggy after long periods of use without a break. It never hurts to do a full system shut down and restart to see if that fixes the problem before you call tech support. Whenever I have trouble with my Internet connection, I make a point to cycle the modem and the router off and back on again before I call my ISP, and inevitably it’s one of the first things that the technician asks me to do. Might as well save us both some time.

While you’re at it, run through your repertoire of basic troubleshooting before you pick up the phone. If your computer is “acting strangely,” sometimes the simple answer is a virus or malware. Update your antivirus protection software and run a malware scan. Continue reading

NEW PC MUST-DO CHECKLIST

This entry is part 11 of 13 in the series Education

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Whether your reliable old PC was finally beaten down by the kids this summer, or you are springing for a new laptop for your back-to-schooler, ‘tis the season of new computers. Before you plug and play that new PC, take these steps to ensure your computer runs optimally from the beginning and to protect your investment for years to come.

Step 1: Get rid of the junk programs. Anyone who has booted up a new, off-the-shelf Windows PC can attest to the deluge of junk programs that come pre-installed to the average Dell or HP machine. Widely known as “bloatware,” these are programs that you’ll probably never use. They’re installed mainly because the computer’s manufacturer was paid to install them on your machine. They take up space, slow your system’s boot-up time and compromise performance. Not only that, but they’re really annoying – they pop up all the time, take up your bandwidth downloading updates, and are rarely useful.

The cleanest way to get rid of the junk is to wipe your hard drive and install a fresh version of Windows. It’s the pathway that most tech professionals choose. The hard part for most people, however, is that your new PC probably didn’t come with a Windows disk or even a recovery CD. Most of the functionality of your video card, USB ports and touchpad come from drivers that may or may not be included with Windows. If these functions aren’t immediately restored, you can be stuck spending hours tracking down the drivers you need.

Another option is to use a program called PC Decrapifier. Simply download the program and it will automatically sweep your system, identifying likely bloatware and offering you the option to confirm its removal. Continue reading

Security – Protect Your Business & Personal Information

This entry is part 1 of 1 in the series password

Lock Down Your Passwords
If someone gets into your accounts whether it’s your email or bank account they could steal information, contacts, account numbers, make purchases, sell your information, your contacts, or hijack your email.

Here are some basic guidelines for a more secure password:

  • Should be no less than 8 characters
  • Could be as long as 16 to 20 characters
  • Use special characters: for example ! @ #
  • Do Not use dictionary words: example pick the first letters of each word of a sentence or song lyric
  • Should include at least one upper and lower case letter and a number.

Human Firewall
Education plays a major role in the human firewall, but you still need a hardware or software firewall. First, don’t open suspicious emails, emails with subject lines that contain misspelled words, emails from someone you don’t know, even some emails from those you do know. You need to be cautious because your friends could have been infected and their computer might have sent you an email, not them. For example: emails from the IRS. The Government doesn’t generally send emails or even have your email address. You should just delete emails from people you do not know, because even just viewing them can cause Malware to run on your computer.

Don’t visit websites that your unfamiliar with. You could use a website likewww.virustotal.com to submit the URL of the website prior to visiting it. Continue reading

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