Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Slow PC?

I worked on another computer tonight that was bogged down and super slow. If you have this problems there are a few straightforward things you can do:

  • See if any programs can be removed from the Add/Remove Programs list in Control Panel. Especially remove the toolbars and other suspicious programs. Sometimes McAfee and Norton products put an excessive strain on a system and should be removed.
  • Install all of the latest Microsoft patches.
  • If you removed McAfee or Norton earlier you can install AVG now.
  • Scan for viruses and spyware.
  • Adjust the startup environment so that very few programs launch at bootup.
  • Check for plenty of free disk space.
  • Check for adequate amount of RAM. Adding more can never hurt.
  • Check to see if disk needs to be defragmented.
  • Remove temporary internet files from Internet Explorer.
  • Also clean out the inside of the pc to remove dust. That can cause overheating which will slow it down and cause it to fail prematurely.

That's a few things that should get you back on the right road to faster computing.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Norton problems

I'm currently working with a user who was getting the red x in Symantec and couldn't install any virues definition updates. The error messages were relating to the Live Update service running in the background. We can't even remove Norton the normal way through Add/Remove programs. To get around these types of issues use the Norton Removal Tool. Since this person only had a few days left in their subscription we decided to remove Norton completely and install the free version of AVG. I highly recommend AVG antivirus. It is free for individual use but companies must pay and register. It finds many viruses and spyware that the paid products leave behind.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Unexpected shutdowns

I was having a problem with a pc at my job continuing to shutdown unexpectedly back in December. After doing many things to the pc I finally discovered the problem. There were bulging, leaking capacitors on the motherboard near the processor. That was the first time that I had experienced that but here again I found this problem with one of my customers at GPCS. After doing the preliminary troubleshooting steps I found this again. The motherboard needs to be replaced but isn't really cost effective. The repair cost is around $200 for an older pc. I informed my customer but advised them that if it were mine I wouldn't put that much money at an older pc but would consider buying a new one now. That's what they did. I am not in the business of building computers from scratch. I can do it but think a complete system from a reputable manufacturer is the best way to go. I am now in the process of getting the data off their old hard drive and will be moving it to their new computer in the next day or so. They'll have all of their data and Internet shortcuts on their new computer system. The only drawback is that any programs they had will need to be reinstalled. Otherwise, they will be in much better shape than before. So if you have this problem take a peek at the capacitors closely on the motherboard. They could be the culprit.

In the beginning...

Currently in the process of setting up a server with web, mail, and ftp services. I'll also be using the server to perform remote control services to my customers via my business website at .