Posts tagged ‘security’
January 12th, 2016
The start of the year is a good time to take stock of your PC, in the same way you might be doing in other parts of your life. Good habits can make or break your computing experiences.
But while you can’t take your PC to the gym to get it toned, there are plenty of good habits you can start doing now. Getting started is the hardest part, so here are some reminders of my top blog posts which will get you going. Read more
November 3rd, 2014
You don’t need to have a computing degree to use a PC these days. That complicated bit of kit sitting on your lap has been honed to the point where it pretty much browses the web, installs programs and empties your bank account all on its own.
But when disaster strikes, why stop there? Here are a few ways to take a perfectly virus-ridden, shattered laptop and really go to town on it.
Grab a registry cleaner, any one will do. Then hit CLEAN, then CLEAN again!
Registry cleaners are a Windows user’s best friend. Install one (or four), hit the button marked ‘clean’ or ‘wipe’ or ‘destroy’ and wait a few seconds for your registry to be stripped of every pesky setting you’ve given it. Then hit that button again, just to catch a few extra things.
And try to install just one more registry cleaner from whichever popup catches your eye first.
Go on – or are you chicken?
One thing I’d certainly avoid is these two programs. They’ve got good reputations, let you backup your registry before making changes, and come with a host of other tools to keep you PC ship shape.
Free: CCleaner: not only makes it easy to do proper repairs to the Registry, but bundles in a couple of other tools too.
Paid: iolo System Mechanic: you get a hell of a lot of tools for your money, and I’ve been using this for years on my own PCs and laptops. If you’re happy to pay a little for a lot of power, try this out. If you’re a real glutton for punishment, get 40% of System Mechanic here.
Ignore the nay-sayers who think you should only use top-notch software like AVG and Kaspersky. To really bugger up your PC you need to find a ‘Top 10 Review’ website which peddles its own substandard product, and get that installed.
Then, when the shocking messages appear suggesting you spend more money, click away!
And pity those scaredy-cats who cower behind things like:
The Netcraft Toolbar Extension, which makes it far too easy to spot spammy links and dodgy websites. This is one freebie you won’t be finding me bothering with.
AVG Free: Supposedly the best free antivirus. I wouldn’t know, because I got my A/V from some website somewhere. I forget.
Kaspersky Security Suite: a reputation as the best of the best, two years running from PC Pro and MicroMart magazines. A whole security suite too, if you’re that way inclined. Put this on your computer and you’ll never achieve that Disaster Nirvana that we’re looking for.
Knacker your laptop
Laptops are a special case. They’re basically built to be thrown around literally, and to slip out of bags perched on walls.
So don’t treat your laptop like a priceless antique or the brittle concoction of plastic and silicon that it is. Try these tips:
Drop your laptop
Make sure your thumb is pressed hard on the screen when you close the lid
Slam that lid down like a mousetrap spring
Play tricks on siblings / husbands by crushing hands in laptops for combined laptop-relational breakdowns.
If this isn’t enough to wreck all chances of seeing Facebook again, I have some bonus tips for you:
- Always send angry replies to spammers. They’re a sensitive bunch, and will take you off their list straight away
- If an email comes in offering something which sounds too good to be true (like, say, a pill which ‘doctors are furious at’), there’s only one way to reap the benefits: whip out your credit card.
- To turn off your computer, just hold down the power button for 8 seconds. This kills the power, and saves you having to click three times to get it to shut down. This is best to do during a Windows Update or defrag.
Now that you know how to really mess your computer up, get going! Alternatively, if you know a friend who’s done one of these things and needs a little help, call in a PC repair expert.
May 14th, 2012
New computers are notorious for packaging tonnes of useless software with them – duplicates of perfectly usable Windows software, unsubtle ways of making you sign up for the manufacturer’s choice of anti-virus, or sinister ways of locking you into a service so you never buy a different brand again.
There are several ways in which this can be a pain: it slows your computer down unnecessarily; it makes it harder to find the stuff you really need and use; and it takes away control from you, the computer’s owner. So, when you unpack your new PC, follow these steps to get the computer you paid for. Read more