Displaying items by tag: computers http://www.kepler.edu Wed, 23 Apr 2014 07:37:48 +0000 Joomla! - Open Source Content Management en-gb 5 Steps to Keep Your Computer Running Smoothly http://www.kepler.edu/home/index.php/news-mainmenu-139/articles-mainmenu-157/astrology-as-a-profession/item/456-computer-running http://www.kepler.edu/home/index.php/news-mainmenu-139/articles-mainmenu-157/astrology-as-a-profession/item/456-computer-running 5 Steps to Keep Your Computer Running Smoothly

Just like people need to eat and bathe and brush their teeth to stay clean and healthy, your computer needs regular maintenance to keep it running smoothly.

Below are five steps in a computer cleanup routine. The applications listed below are (almost all) free tools that can be downloaded from CNET, the most respected internet site for software downloads and reviews. The programs below are appropriate for Windows-based machines; those using a Mac can find similar tools as CNET for a Mac. Instructions for how to use the apps are found on their CNET page, as well as in the application’s wizard.

While your firewall and antivirus software should be set to run continuously, you will need to set aside time weekly, biweekly, or monthly to perform these additional steps. Many of these scans take time to run, so they can easily be set to run overnight, or while you are taking care of other activities.

Step 1: Protect

Computers need protection from viruses, spyware, identity thieves and various other trouble makers.  Make sure you have computer firewall installed and turned on, that your antivirus software is up-to-date and running. You run malware software removal tools on a routine basis to make sure your computer hasn’t been compromised. 

TIP: NEVER buy anti-virus software from a pop-up ad that offers to scan your system. The vast majority of these ads are scams.

Firewall: Windows Firewall
Anti-virus with both free and paid versions: AVG Anti-Virus, Avast

The best paid anti-virus programs: Norton Anti-Virus, McAfee Anti-Virus, Kaspersky Labs
Malware Removal: Malwarebytes, Adaware, Spybot Search and Destroy (free)

Step 2: Backup

Even with the best of computer maintenance, accidents happen. To recover from computer catastrophe, you need a system in place to back up your computer files so you can recover from a crisis. You can back up your files to a local external hard drive or use a backup service to store your files on the internet.

Local backup software: Easeus ToDo Backup, Windows 7 Backup & Restore (Windows 7 only)
Internet backup system: Carbonite (15-day free trial, then $60/year unlimited disk space)

Step 3: Clean

With regular use, computer files get frayed around the edges. To keep your computer running smoothly, you need to regularly remove temporary and junk files, clear internet caches and clean the registry of broken links.  Computer optimizing utilities can help you manage these routine maintenance tasks.

Optimizing Utilities: CCleaner, Glary Utilities

Step 4: Update

In order to improve functionality, as well combat changing security threats, many software companies release regular updates and patches for their applications.  When you install new software, you can often select “automatically scan for updates” so you will be informed when new updates are available. You can also download update managers to help you find the latest versions of the applications on your computer.

Update Managers: Windows Update, CNET TechTracker

Step 5: Defragment

As computer files get moved around on your computer, the parts of the files are separated one from another on the hard disk, which makes it take longer to run your favorite software. Keep files organized and running efficiently by defragmenting the computer on a regular basis.

Defragmentation Utilities: Smart Defrag

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    kepler@kepler.edu (Kepler) Technical Tips Sun, 19 May 2013 23:25:55 +0000
    Using an RSS Feed to Save Time http://www.kepler.edu/home/index.php/news-mainmenu-139/articles-mainmenu-157/astrology-as-a-profession/item/447-using-an-rss-feed-to-save-time http://www.kepler.edu/home/index.php/news-mainmenu-139/articles-mainmenu-157/astrology-as-a-profession/item/447-using-an-rss-feed-to-save-time RSS feed symbol

    Who has time to visit dozens of websites every day to check on the latest articles that interest you? Fortunately, with RSS, you don’t have to. RSS stands for Really Simply Syndication. By signing up to receive the RSS feed from a website, when new content from that website is produced, it will be delivered directly to you.

    There are two main ways to read RSS feeds. The first way is via email. Some sites allow you sign up have notifications of new content sent to your email inbox. Just provide your email address, and the site will take care of the rest. This is the best option for those who only want to receive a couple feeds.

    The second way is using a feed reader. Feed readers (sometimes called a feed aggregator) collect all of your feeds and present the information to you in a newspaper-like format. Feed readers let you organize your feeds by subjects, search by keywords, star items for reference, or clip articles for storage. Feed readers are the best solution for those managing multiple feeds, someone doing research or producing a blog, or just information junkies.

    Feed readers can be plugins to web mail like Gmail or Yahoo, or web browers like Firefox and Internet Explorer. There are also free stand-alone feed readers such as FeedDemon. CNET has an article on how to choose the best feed reader for you.

    rss-icon100pxOnce you’ve decided how you want to read an RSS feed, all you have to do is sign up. Go to your favorite website, look for an orange icon on the website that looks like the image on the left. Click the icon and follow the directions.

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    • RSS feed
      donna@fourmoonsastrology.com (Donna Woodwell) Technical Tips Wed, 17 Apr 2013 20:29:02 +0000