Most of us use computers every day in our lives, but no matter how long we’ve been using these machines, we can never claim to have become computer experts in the process. Most people just go on using their computers without giving much attention to the maintenance and security side of things.
Due to lack of knowledge of the fundamental things that need to be done in order to ensure an excellent device performance, guaranteed safety and protection and even the device longevity, most computers just fail at some point leaving its owner utterly helpless.
If you want to use your computer for a long time and protect all the precious stuff saved in it then you must learn the basics of computer care. That’s exactly what this guide is for. It will help you solve and even prevent the most common computer troubles and aid you in building healthy habits that will keep your device in good working condition.
1. Failing to Ask For Help When It’s Needed
Most people assume that computers are easy to figure out. With just a press of a few buttons, click on some links and voila! An access to the virtual world is instantly opened. This might be the case on the first time you open and set up your machine but in the months and years after that, the case is totally different.
If you are an average user who’s now starting to experience the slowing down of your computer’s performance, you need outside help especially in the more technical aspects involved in fixing it. Trying to do it on your own might just cause further problems. Seek professional help from reputable internet support specialists. They are the right people who can tune up your computer and keep it in great working condition.
If it’s complicated hardware or software that you need help with then these people can also be of great help. They can even troubleshoot problems and prevent them from happening. You really need help in these areas so don’t be afraid to ask for it.
2. Lack of Back Up Routine
Most people get their computers fixed not because they want to preserve its hardware but because of the precious data that is saved in it. Hardware can easily be replaced but the data in your machine is something that’s irreplaceable.
Whether it’s the photos saved in there or your favorite music which you have collected for years or some writing compositions you’ve been working on since high school, every one of these will be lost if your computer crashes to the point of total death- unless of course if you did back up everything in a safe place on your hard drive.
You might have heard about the “ransomware” that has affected several Windows computers around the world. It worked by encrypting all the data inside the victim’s computer with a threat of deleting everything if the ransom isn’t paid before a set deadline. And the scary thing about it is that there’s no guarantee that all your important files are going to be restored after paying.
So it is best to keep a backup within your computer and also a portable hard drive. If you have the budget, you can also opt-in for online backup services or cloud storage to keep all your files safe no matter what happens to your computer.
3. Not Giving Time to Update the Software
Ransomware isn’t only the threat that you need to be concerned of. Yes! There are several threats that you can fall prey to including keyloggers, botnet, rootkit and many others. And if you’re not updating your software to the latest version then you’re most likely to get infected by these malware threats that are lurking in the dark corners of the Internet.
Hackers have found a way to gain access to different devices and yes, it is through your machine’s outdated software. These are called “software vulnerabilities” which provide an entry point to cyber-criminals seeking to get access to your computer and all the data stored in it. These vulnerabilities are increasing by the day which is why you need to install software updates when they come.
It takes time and at times, you may even feel like it’s a complete waste of time to the point that you’ll just decide to hit “Update Later” but remember this, every single second that you decide to delay a security or software update, you become closer to the risk of a possible cyber attack.
4. Not Being Careful About Downloading Stuff from the Internet
The Internet is full of stuff that is free to download. Yes! There are thousands of resources and even software that can be downloaded for free. For instance, if you want to experience how an expensive software works, you can go ahead and download a trial version of it for free.
You can download ebooks, dissertations, music and even movies, photos and other multimedia files illegally for free! The Internet truly is a rich resource of stuff that you can enjoy but you need to be careful of the stuff that you are downloading especially if it’s free.
If the file you are trying to download is one that should be in PDF format but what you got in your Downloads folder is an executable file, you better delete it and not dare to open it! It’s a dangerous little program that’s designed to inject itself either to your browser or your machine’s registry which can result in a lot of problems later on.
Before hitting any “Download” button, be sure to verify the website where you are downloading the file from. Is it a site that can be trusted? Look it up on Google and see if it’s a legit one. You can also protect your self from these harmful threats by installing a good antivirus program.
5. Not Taking Time to Clean Up
Many users just stuff their computers with different sort of digital clutter and never spend time cleaning them up. The more of these digital mess gets piled up on your machine’s memory, the slower your device will become. Make it a habit to delete files that you no longer need and save the ones that you don’t use often in a cloud or on your portable hard drive. It’s always good to leave at least 10% of your computer’s storage space for it to work smoothly.
Just like the other investments that you have, your computer needs regular maintenance for it to work smoothly and serve its full purpose. Follow the 5 tips that are listed above and do them on a regular basis and you’re sure to have a machine that’s working well all the time.