Monday, January 10, 2011

Lecture Transcript

In addition to my full time job at a Fortune 50 company, my occasional catering gigs, my blogging, and everything else I do, I also teach at Wilkes Community College. There are several lectures that I give that lend themselves to transcription. This is one. If you will indulge me, I am sharing it here. Please feel free to comment with any notes, ideas, or corrections you would like to offer. More recipe fun tomorrow.


Optimizing your system

So your system is running a little sluggish lately, things are taking a while to load, your favorite game on Facebook is lagging, you can't download music, maybe you are even prompted to run a spyware cleaner. Well, lets look at the situation.

I'm going to tell you what I do, and piss off every tech out there because this is what they do too.

First - Back up your system regularly. There are plenty of ways to do this. There are online services, external hard drives, second hard drives, recordable CDs or DVDs, thumb drives, etc. If your Hard drive dies completely, you will lose everything. That's important enough to repeat. If your Hard drive dies completely, you will lose everything.

Second - Avoid doing things that could potentially damage your system. Think about surfing the internet like driving around in a bad neighborhood. There are areas you shouldn't go to and places you shouldn't stop at. In other words, avoid porn sites, avoid file sharing sites, and above all avoid torrenting. I don't say this for the legal implications, I say this for the amount of wear and tear torrenting will do to your system.

Third - Defragment your hard drive, but don't do it all the time. In a future lecture I'll explain exactly what happens when you defragment your hard drive. In a nutshell, defragmenting your hard drive is resource intensive. It is a good thing to do occasionally, but if you do it too frequently, you can damage your hard drive. A good rule of thumb is do it twice a year.

Fourth - Antispyware / Antivirus. If you get a pop-up that says your system is not protected or is under attack and that you should "click here" - DON'T! These are almost always scams. Here's what I recommend. Use either Malware Bytes or AdAware for spyware/malware protection. Both are free, both are excellent. Use either AVG or Avast of virus protect. Again, both are free and both are excellent. I recommend against Norton and Mcafee, they are expensive and resource hogs.

Fifth - Add more RAM. RAM is probably the easiest upgrade you can do give your PC. Check your PC's information with a program like Aida. Once you know how much RAM you have and what type of PC you have, you can determine what type of RAM to get.

These five steps are simple, but if you need help, contact a professional, we're always happy to help.

Until tomorrow, Peace, Love, and Hollandaise Sauce!

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