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 Basic Computer Maintenance

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WarLokk1980
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Join date : 2009-08-15
Age : 38
Location : Preston, United Kingdom

PostSubject: Basic Computer Maintenance   Mon Aug 24, 2009 1:51 pm

As time goes on our PC's progressively get slower due to the clog of unwanted files building up, data fragmentation and general poor housekeeping. To eliminate these problems there are a few tips that can be used to boost the efficiency of your favourite gadget (the beloved pc):
Disk Cleanup - This is accessed through the start menu in all programs/accessories/system tools/disk cleanup.
Once you start the wizard it calculates how much space can be saved so please be patient as those of you with slower IDE HDD's will take longer than SATA2 HDD's. The recommended selections to make are downloaded program files, temporary internet files, recycle bin and temporary files. Simply check those boxes and press ok and you'll be prompted to delete the files. You should do this every month or two.
Disk Defragmentor - This is accesed in the same folder system tools. Basically all you need to do is start the wizard select volumes of which drives you want to defrag (normally drive c) and press defragment now. The best time to run this is night-time before hitting the sack as it can take hours if the data is badly fragmented. Basically fragmentation is when a lot of data is stored on a large disk, it gets unorganised and requires more time to access it. Defragmenting the data reorganises it so the pc has less of a hard job accessing the data. You should do this once a month.
Anti-Virus scans - To keep your computer in tip top condition you should have anti-virus software installed and regulary update the software(most do this automatically for you) and run periodic scans of your hard drive(s) at least once a month. You will need to refer to your anti-virus software documentation to get instructions on how to do this as they all differ but anyone who has McAfee installed can ask me for advice as that is what I have on my home network. Norton users can contact me also as I have used Norton in the past too.
Firewall - Most anti-virus software comes with it's own firewall but in the absence of this you should have your regular Windows Firewall switched on. It can be accessed by simply typing firewall in the search bar in the start menu. For games to work they have to be listed in the exceptions tab. When you play a game for the 1st time your firewall will pop up saying "Firewall has blocked this program do you want to allow it?". Simply unblocking the game will allow most games to work (like Games for Windows Live) however sometimes that is not enough. In the even of it still not working you will need to open ports in your firewall if you are connected directly to a modem and if you're using a router you'll have to open the required ports in the router itself. Routers are normally accessed by enetering the IP 192.168.1.1 in your web browser. You will have to enter a username and password which often are admin and password. Depending on the make of router they will differ on how to open ports. Anyone who has difficulty make a thread in Tech Support section and we will help you. Don't forget to tell us the make and model of router you're using and your system specs. Failure to include the details will delay you getting assistance as we will only ask you for this info before we can help. Anyone who has Netgear routers can ask me for direct assistance.
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rclaxx14
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PostSubject: Re: Basic Computer Maintenance   Wed Aug 26, 2009 8:11 pm

And when worst comes to worst, reformat your hard drive.
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WarLokk1980
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PostSubject: Re: Basic Computer Maintenance   Thu Aug 27, 2009 2:46 am

rclaxx14 wrote:
And when worst comes to worst, reformat your hard drive.
At PCWorld we used to call it 'Full destructive recovery' and it's the best way to deal with the inevitable. Heck itt can be annoying when you don't back up your data and your pc crashes. I had a lucky escape recently when my computer refused to boot up properly. I thought "WTF! I'll lose all my game saves and not to mention my Comptia A+ work!". Luckily I was able to start safe mode with networking and drop all my files into my mum's public folder on her laptop. One of the benefits of having a network with file sharing set up and with Vista it's 10 times easier than setting XP up to do the same.

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