Current News 7/19/2020

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Laptop recommendations here!

Computer speed is determined by two things, the quality of your Internet connection and the computer itself. Your computer may be fast, but if your Internet connection is poor, it will make the computer seem slow. You may test your Internet connection speed here or here. We want to see a Download speed of 2.5 or greater, with a preferred minimum of 5.

Windows 7 is fading away, but it still works under most instances. We are finding computers built after 2013 typically accept Windows 10. Anything earlier is sketchy. In roughly 10% of Windows 10 upgrades, the computer becomes unstable and needs additional service.

Don’t stock up on printer ink cartridges or toner. Printers are not economically repairable so if the printer fails and requires replacement, you’re stuck with unusable ink cartridges. Modern day printers can be expected to last a few years whether you use them or not. They do not last long.

Another printer note. Always, always, always run your inkjet printer once a week. Letting it sit unused for weeks or months will dry out the ink. If you’re lucky with your model, replacing the ink cartridge will fix the issue. In other cases, the print head itself, which may not be part of the ink cartridge, goes bad. The chances of the print head being economically replaceable is next to zero, resulting in the printer requiring replacement.

Tablets and phones are not typically repairable. Cracked screens might be, but the internal electronics are not unless the technician has access to used parts.

Never, never, never store photos or important data on your phone or tablet. When it fails to start, there is a high probability that you will lose it all. Either plug the device into a computer and copy the data to it, or confirm your data is synced with either iCloud in the case of Apple devices or Google Drive for Android.

Do not store emails in your “Deleted” folder. Way to easy to lose it all by accident. At a minimum, create a folder called “Saved” and move all the email you want ot save there. An even better way is to create folders based on the content of the email.

Do not install software using stolen or “borrowed” key numbers. Usually this occurs when someone “helps” you fix or setup your computer. The computer then fails in some way and the person that magically installed all this “free” software that you now depend on is nowhere to be found. We then get to report back that none of the software or operating system is reload-able with the pirated keys. In these cases, the chances of us fixing the problem without requiring the purchase of legitimate licenses drops significantly.

If you ever see a screen on your computer indicating that your computer is infected or compromised in some way and you must call a phone number to get it fixed, rest assured there is nothing wrong and what you are seeing is a scam. There is nothing wrong with your computer. Reboot the computer to try and clear the message. The same goes for any phone call or email. It’s all a scam.

Microsoft is currently pushing out large Windows updates. If you see that it’s taking a long time to boot or you see a message on the screen regarding updates, DO NOT RESTART. Let it finish whatever its doing. It may take hours.

What is Microsoft Edge? As you may know, the “browser” is simply the program you use to view websites. A typical browser you may be using might be Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, Safari, etc. Internet Explorer is badly outdated and has not received updates for many years. Because of that, Microsoft Edge is being pushed out as a replacement. Most of the world uses Chrome. Microsoft Edge can be ignored. If Internet Explorer still works for you, feel free to use it. We have found it to be slow and unstable.

Finally, and the grand daddy of all tips – DOCUMENT YOUR PASSWORDS!!!! We never meant to be hackers but seemingly every day we have to break into accounts due to forgotten passwords. Most times we can find a way, but more recently the companies are really locking down accounts. Document everything including old and new passwords, secret questions and answers, date the account was created, phone numbers used to recover the account, etc.

Oh, and one last thing. Document the passwords in a notebook, not the tiniest of post-it notes. Print in all uppercase and signify actual uppercase letters with a line underneath. Recording your passwords in script is no good.

That’s it for today!

Contact us with any questions!

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