A PC Technician Can Do More Than PC Repairs

He can give a lot of technical advice to the client in various things like Internet security, data storage, right use of various computer applications etc. This will work out to be a mutually beneficial relationship between the client and the service giver. All those who own a PC are bound to need PC repairs now and then, and for these repair requirements they would need a PC technician. While this is an indisputable fact a technician can do much more than repair a PC. So far as he has got a good rapport with the PC owner, he can forestall a lot of repairs by helping him to maintain the computer well.

One of the ways in which a PC technician can help is by emphasizing to the client the need for data protection. With relation to the Internet, there is a lot that a client has to know about firewalls, securing of passwords, problems with an unsecured router etc. If his PC technician can explain to him all these and guide him on how to use the Internet in a secure way, the computer owner will be able to prevent data exposure to a great extent.

In most cases, computer users try to get the help of a PC technician only when there is an emergency need for some PC repairs. Instead of that they can tie up with a technician, which can involve technical advice as well. Even if he charges a little extra for it, it will work out as a mutually beneficial package. Under this agreement, the technician can give his client detailed advice on the need for surge protection, power backup requirements, registry cleaning, virus protection, and the need to continuously back up data to save data.

The need for data backup can never be overemphasized. Data can be stored in external storage devices like eSATA or a USB flash drive. For those who find even this inconvenient, there are online provisions for data storage. A PC technician can obviously guide a computer owner on the advantages and disadvantages of using different data storage facilities and on the cost effectiveness of each.

Online data storing facilities have many advantages over external data storage devices. When the data is stored online, the user does not even have to carry a thumb drive in his pocket. There is no risk of mechanical injuries to the storage device as well. The data can be accessed from anywhere in the world and the user can work on any other computer if his own one is non-functional and in need of PC repairs.

Many of the online storage arrangements allow free storage of limited amounts of data and charge an annual or monthly fee for more storage. The computer can be programmed to back up data and store it at the site on a daily basis. Lots of computer users may not be aware of even such a provision, while others may not know how to program the computer for it. All these are arenas where a PC technician can help.

Another arena where a technician can help is in guiding the user to take advantage of the many inbuilt programs that a computer will have. Many users are either not aware of, or are not conversant with the programs. In short, a PC technician can help a computer owner in many more ways than doing PC repairs.

How to Troubleshoot PC Problems

Each and everyday, people are dealing with various computer problems. Problems such as Spyware and Adware, Registry Errors, and overall slow speeds. I will discuss these three problems and what you can do to fix them.

Spyware and Adware

Spyware and Adware can be devastating to a computer. You could receive constant pop ups, you could have slow computer speeds, and your personal information is in jeopardy of being stolen.

How to Fix it

To fix Spyware and Adware, first you should be careful on the internet. Second you should purchase a virus scanner or virus protector to detect malicious software and stop them from accessing your computer.

Slow Computer Speed

Slow computer speed can be caused by a variety of different things. So I will discuss a few ways in which you can boost your PC’s speed.

How to Fix it

First off, you should delete old programs and games that you know longer use. These old programs will eat up your system’s RAM, which could be used for other things. Second, you should defragment your hard drive at least once a month to keep it as clean as possible.

Registry Errors

Registry Errors are problems within the Windows Registry. Either a file is missing, or a file can go corrupt. Also, a virus could delete precious registry files. If you are experiencing this problem one of the following may be happening:

Computer is running very slow Computer randomly crashes Windows does not start up properly
How to Fix it

Luckily this can be fixed. You could always go into the registry and fix the problems yourself if you have a lot of knowledge in computers, but I would recommend another solution. Buying a registry cleaner is probably the best way to fix the problem. With just a few clicks of the mouse, the program will scan through and automatically fix any problems that may be occurring.

The Advantages Of Upgrading Your Home Pc And What To Know Before You Do

There comes a time in every computers life where things just don’t seem to go its way. We have all known the frustration and stress of using a computer that’s just a little bit too old and takes forever to do, well, anything. Usually this is only because the programs your running on it are designed for faster computers, but hey you have a computer so who cares if it’s a little slow right? After a few years of this and updating your software it gets a little bit much to handle. It results in a computer with a cursor that you can barely move until you have waited half an hour after you pushed that ON button.

When you choose to upgrade you computer, it really is a stress relieving process. But how do you know what to get? Do u only need an upgrade or should you get a brand new computer? Just the one part or multiple, and what mix should you have all power or good price?

Upgrading is good for the typical computer user, when you want to run the same programs as you were, the same operating system, but want it faster. If your looking to run high demand programs, then a new computer would be the way to go. Usually you will need to upgrade at least three parts for a major upgrade. Motherboard, CPU and ram. Realistically you only need to upgrade the CPU to get better performance from your computer (the majority of the time), but because of advancement in technology it’s hard to find the same socket CPU as you could get four or five years ago, and if you can it’s most likely outdated or obsolete stock that’s not supported anymore. I’d suggest it’s not going to be a wise decision to buy it. So now you need to buy the CPU and the thing to put it in, the motherboard. Every upgrade should contain more ram. No matter how long ago you bought your computer, you could probably use more RAM (random access memory).

RAM is temporary storage the computer uses to do calculations and processes within programs. You will most likely relate best when I describe the computer as getting chunky, when the mouse seems to take forever to move, and the programs just aren’t loading. This is when the RAM is full, or getting close to full. Getting more of it just means that the computer will take longer to get to that point.

So what should you buy, good value or the best performance. If the technology is going to be outdated in 5 years, why get the best performance? If you buy the best value right now, you could have to upgrade sooner, like two or three years down the track. When you upgrade, its best to go for a midway point. A lot of the best hardware 6 months from now will be half the price it is today, some of the best value will be off the market. As a general rule of thumb you can tell how good the hardware is by how much it costs, this is not perfect but it’s a good generalization.

The most costly CPU will, in most cases, be the best performance. You want to get a little over the mid-range to get a good mix between value and performance. If the most expensive CPU is $1000 you would want maybe a $600 one. This CPU will still be very good in performance, but it will last a fairly long time in doing the things you normally do.

If you wanted to upgrade your computer for another reason, for instance to make the computer work well for CAD work or to a gaming computer. It would probably be best to upgrade your graphics card as well. The graphics card plays a major part in the performance of your computer when anything visual is involved.

The motherboard and ram are still important, but there’s a different rule of thumb. If it’s a general use computer then I would imagine that your not looking at small percentage increases in performance, any motherboard with the right socket will pretty much do fine. The higher priced motherboards do have a lot of extra features and marginal performance increases. I would not recommend getting the bottom of the line, but unless your upgrading to a gaming computer there’s no need for the extra features.

The RAM rule of thumb is this. Anything with a lifetime warranty. All no-name brand ram I’ve seen (the ones with a 1 year or 3 year warranty) have had drastic performance drops even for home use. All decent brands offer a lifetime warranty and aren’t usually that much more expensive, maybe $10-$20 extra.

Upgrading is best done within about 3 to 4 years of when you bought the computer. This way you won’t have a massive upgrade bill, and you won’t have old unreliable parts. If your computer is more than six years old I’d recommend buying a new computer instead of upgrading.

Importance of troubleshooting computers

Troubleshooting, as it is commonly defined, is a form of solving problems especially those found in systems, machines, and devices. Its definition alone exhibits the importance of such activity mainly because through it, expenses on repairs and buys are lessened and more importantly, a device’s usage is maximized. It is important to remember that at the very instant that a device is bought; issues could instantly go with it. This explains why it is greatly important to know how to troubleshoot these ever increasing system, machine, and computer problems. Troubleshooting lessens expenses brought by repairs and even the need of buying new systems and computers knowing that through it, problems are given immediate solutions. Also, through troubleshooting, uses and benefits of an involved software or device are maximized which as well makes its cost worth it and thus avoiding serious problems such as system failure or device malfunction and breakdown.

Understanding Blue Screen of Death


Blue Screen of Death. Just the name is terrifying! It is likely that if you’ve used Windows that you’ve also encountered this blue screen STOP error. It happens whenever your computer senses a software, hardware or driver error which will not allow it to continue operating properly. It can happen anytime for any different reasons. Before you have a heart attack, here’s a beginner’s guide on how to deal with BSOD

The first step is trying to reboot your computer. Sometimes, all it needs is that and you will have recovered. On other more complicated times, you may need to troubleshoot more. All BSOD comes with clues. Take your time to read because it will contain what you need to do. Most of the time it will tell you to restart your computer. (Do that) Otherwise, go into safe mode. From there you can get into “My Computer” and right click on the “c” select the tools tab and do a defrag and schedule a disk check – check both boxes in disk check – one says “check for errors” the other one say “attempt to repair”

Computer Basics : Essential for troubleshooting Part-1

pctt5.jpgIt is true that not many people know how to tinker with their computers which doesn�t mean that one cannot handle minor repairs. Repairs and preventive maintenance such as cleaning can be carried out by you and me with the most elementary of cleaning tools and a little elbow grease to go with them. First, to ensure you experience less problems try to get the computer CPU cleaned at least once a year. If you live in a dusty environment or if you have a Fido or Fifi in he house then this might become a regular routine. Before you take off the cover which is normally screwed down ( be sure to check for any warranty seals on the casing, breaking them would void the warranty terms) with four Phillips type screws be sure the power chord is removed and all devices are unplugged from the respective connections (tip: if you assume that you won�t be able to return all those wires to the proper places, get hold of your camera phone or digital camera and take a few shots as a visual record). Slide the cover off to get a glimpse of the innards of your personal computer.

Tips to Help Before You Call a Professional to Repair Your PC

There are many problems that can easily be fixed in a few minutes by a person with no computer knowledge. So before you call in a professional see if you can save yourself time and money by fixing it yourself.

First, and this sounds silly but you need to check the obvious. Is the computer turned on? Assuming that it is your next step will be to make sure it is getting power. Unplug the computer and plug something else into the outlet to make sure the electrical outlet has power. Next switch your computers power cord with another cord make sure the problem is not the power cord. Check all the wires that attach to the back of the computer make sure they are firmly connected.

If all that is working it’s now time to open up your desktop computer. Don’t panic this is very simple and there is very little harm that you can do. On the back of the computer you will find two screws normally on the right hand side of the case when the back of the computer is facing you. After you remove these screws the side of the case should slide off. Look inside you will see a fan facing you somewhere close to the centre of the case. Turn the computer on, is this fan spinning? If not you will need to replace this fan, just remove the four screws holding the fan in place and take it to your local Best Buy or PC parts store.

While you are inside the case get a can of compressed air and small brush (A paint brush is fine) and remove any dust you can find, focus your attention on the metal fins underneath the fan. Also give a gentle push on all wires to make sure they are securely connected. You should do this once or twice a year to maintain your computer and extend its life.
These simple checks can save you hundreds of pounds.

Top Tips For Troubleshooting DLL Errors

Many computer users are victims of the false belief that the task of troubleshooting computer errors should be only undertaken by an expert. Well, certainly we should seek expert help in resolving complex computer errors, but many common computer errors can be easily resolved and do not require any expert help. In this article, we discuss how to troubleshoot one such common fix-it-yourself computer error known as DLL errors.

What are DLL files?

DLL files contain code or functions that are used by different applications to perform a particular function. A single DLL file can be used by multiple applications to perform the same function. Because there are thousands of DLL files present on a PC, the occurrence of a DLL error every now and then is pretty common. However, unlike other system errors, DLL errors are fairly simple to troubleshoot. Usually, DLL errors messages display a fairly illustrative DLL error message and tell the user the likely cause of the error.

Causes of a DLL error

Discussed below are common causes of a DLL error:

o Missing or Corrupt DLL file
o Malware infection
o Registry issues
o Outdated files

How to troubleshoot a DLL error

Depending upon the cause of the DLL error, you can use either of the following steps to fix the DLL error:

Reinstall the missing DLL file

You can usually fix the DLL error that occurs due to a missing DLL file by reinstalling the DLL. You must try to reinstall the application that generated the error to replace the missing file. You may also try to obtain the missing DLL file from a reliable source on the Internet.

Get rid of the malware that is causing DLL error

Many DLL errors, such as rundll errors occur due to malware infections. Malware programs, such as viruses and worms deliberately edit the codes embedded in DLL files and make them inaccessible. As a result, a DLL error is generated every time an application or the operating system tries to access the infected DLL file. To fix a DLL error that is caused by a malware infection, perform a full scan of your entire system to delete or quarantine the malware and repair the infected file. To prevent malware programs from breaching your system’s security in the future, install reliable antivirus and antispyware tools on your system.

Repair registry entries

The registry is the central repository of your system and stores important data, including entries related to all your DLL files. DLL errors, such as shell32.dll errors occur when the entries related to this file are damaged or incorrectly modified. To resolve such errors, you will need to repair their entries. However, editing registry entries is a highly technical job and should not be attempted if one does not posses the required expertise. We recommend that you use an efficient registry cleaning tool to repair the incorrect DLL entries within the registry. To repair damaged registry entries and to get rid of all the unwanted information accumulated in the registry, perform a registry scan using an advanced registry cleaning tool.

Update your drivers, software and operating system

Outdated files may also cause DLL errors on your system. To prevent this from happening, regularly update your drivers, software, and operating system with the latest security releases and updates that are released by their manufacturers.

Screech….ing hard drive – Finishing the Job (Part 6)

hdfail5.jpgOne drive systems usually have no jumpers while two or more drive systems can have them installed. Set your errant drive as the slave and the master drive (the new one) as the master drive. Install the drive and screw securely while ensuring all power cables and connectors are set in their proper places before you power up. Partition the new drive if desired and format each partition (this ensures no malicious programs might have been innocently???? left in the drive during testing by the retailer or manufacturer) even if the retailer who sold you the drive says it is factory formatted. Re-install the OS, drivers and all the other programs; re-copy all the necessary files and you’re all set to go. Oh, don’t forget to take out the errant drive after you copy all your documents and files (the drive can fail and damage the computer if the controller board shorts due to failure of the mechanical parts damaging the rest of your computer including the new drive).

Hardware Upgrades – Are they still worth it?

That would be a question that you yourself would have to address for determining the feasibility of such a task depends mainly on cost. Consider these points, if you are upgrading your computer because it has considerably slowed down, then a total retrofit or even replacement would be in order. This would be more akin to older machines that may have already been serving you for a good couple of years, besides, you may not be able to find any compatible hardware anymore due to the fast pace at which technology advances. (more…)