For in-home/on-site computer repair service in and around Nashville
(remove viruses, connect to the Internet, setup new systems, fix a myriad of problems),
call Bill at (615) 479-4981.

We hope you find this newsletter interesting and useful! Feel free to forward it to anyone you like … or don’t like. 🙂

Quick tip

Restart your computer immediately after updating Adobe Reader or Adobe Flash. This keeps malware from exploiting a recently-discovered security flaw.

Old junk

Don’t throw away that old computer hardware or software! Give it to us! We might still throw it away (or, more likely, recycle it), but we might also find a use for it. If you want us to donate it, we’ll remove your personal profile and files, make sure everything works, and drop it off at your favorite charity. Give us a call to discuss at (615) 479-4981 or email us here: ComputerHelp!.


Keeping your PC safe

That fake “your pc is infected” warning has been going around again. BEFORE you get it, do the following:

If it’s too late and you already have this problem, get a friend to download Malwarebytes and put it on a flash drive for you, then install and run it on your computer in Safe Mode. Here’s another good article on the same subject. And, finally, click here for a good explanation of “cookies.”


What every Windows PC needs

In addition to staying on top of your Windows and Office Updates, you should install and run the following:

Malware protection

  • See Keeping Your PC Safe above.

Disaster recovery

  • We highly recommend Acronis True Image, no matter what your operating system is. It creates an image of your existing installation and copies it to a bootable, protected, hidden partition (or an image file on an external or network drive) that is easily restored. You might lose recent documents after restoring, depending on how it’s setup, but it’s the best thing we’re aware of for quick and painless disaster recovery. Windows VISTA and 7 also have the ability to make a complete backup of your system, but we haven’t tested it thoroughly enough to rate it here.
  • For flaky/weird/hinky recovery, assuming you can get into Windows, we recommend ERUNT (Emergency Recovery Utility for NT-based Windows). It puts itself into the Startup group and makes a backup of your Windows registry (where all settings are stored) every time you startup. It’s free.
  • Don’t forget System Restore, again assuming Windows will at least start. It’s a great tool. It’s under Start, All Programs, Accessories, System Tools.

Browsers, etc.

  • You also need to stay on top of your Java and Adobe Reader and Flash updates, if you browse the Internet (and who doesn’t?).
  • See Keeping Your PC Safe above.

Hardware

  • For your hard drive, the physical piece of equipment where all of the above happens, we recommend:
    • An external hard drive (here or several here) to safely copy your files. They’re getting bigger and cheaper all the time.
    • For the integrity of the drive inside your computer, we recommend running Check Disk every 2 or 3 months, like so:
      • Open up a DOS/command prompt (click Start, Run, type “cmd” without the quotes, hit Enter or click OK. For VISTA and Windows 7, you don’t click “Run”)
      • Next, type (without quotes): “chkdsk /r” and hit Enter
      • When chkdsk starts, it’ll say it can’t be run now, “would you like it to run next time you start Windows?” Answer Yes and then restart your machine soon thereafter. Otherwise, you’ll forget, and the next time you start your machine it will take forever to finish that check and load Windows, you’ll be in a hurry, and you’ll start cursing me and my advice. 🙂

If the above helped you in any way, please show your appreciation by clicking the PayPal DONATE link here. It’s safe and, like public television, contributions from you readers like you allow us to keep doing this. Thanks!

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