Open M,W,F Noon to 4 PM. Closed
Information in this
document is subject to change without notice.
Call us anytime for an off-hours appointment that
fits your schedule.
to Maintain Your PC
computer viruses and malware are more likely to infect a computer that
is out of date. You need to keep the virus definitions up-to-date,
along with Java, Adobe Reader, Adobe Flash and important Windows
Updates. Many anti-virus programs charge you an annual fee. Panda
Cloud Antivirus, AVG and Avast,
are very good free anti-virus programs for
consumers. Symantec (Norton), Bitdefender, and Kaspersky
AntiVirus are currently very good subscription consumer and
business antivirus programs.
the PC is inadvertently infected, reboot into
safe mode right away (in XP, Vista, and Windows 7 tap the F8 key when
computer restarts and select Safe Mode). Once in safe mode open
Anti-Malware, update the program, and then run a quick scan. This may
system out. If not, call (309) 751-4490. Once cleaned, we recommend
Sandboxie, and setup a Sandboxed Web
that will prevent rogue program downloads and system
unless you “recover” them (which allows downloads onto your system).
an option, after closing the browser, select "Delete Contents". An
of Sandboxie is that after 30-days a "nag screen" appears, when you
start the program that makes you wait five seconds. Then you need to
bar to continue. If you own multiple PCs, and you like the program, we suggest you purchase a
for Sandboxie that may be used on all of your personal PCs. Do not try to install programs or updates that
were downloaded within a sandboxed web browser. They won’t install. That’s the
point of the sandbox. Keep
in mind that from our experience Sandboxie is compatible with over 90%, but not
all, of computers.
malware are automatically downloaded through peer to peer file sharing
programs like Ares, Warez, FrostWire, LimeWire, eMule,
BearShare, and the various Torrents. When
using file sharing networks you open your computer files for the world
to see, and steal. IM file transfer is another avenue for programs that
you don't want. Never accept IM file transfers that you didn't ask for
and know are safe while using any Instant Messaging program, or click
on any unsolicited links. Use legal download sites only, such as
iTunes. Spyware is often installed with "free" offers, like free
screensavers or cursors. To avoid Spyware, do not install any free
programs that have not been professionally reviewed as free of Spyware
and make sure to uncheck any offers for “free” stuff like toolbars.
frequent backups of your data files.
Why risk losing photos and other important files? Save your data to
another PC on a network, to a flash drive, or ideally to a portable
hard drive. Backing up onto your own computer, where your original
files are, won't help if the hard drive dies, gets corrupted, or the
system is hit by an electrical surge caused by a nearby lightning
strike. One complete backup weekly is recommended with daily
incremental backups if you are using the PC as an integral part of a
business or organization. Home users should also backup all important
files. Don't learn the hard way! Back up your data locally by imaging
your PC’s hard drive or solid state drive. Windows 7 has disc
imaging as part of its built-in Backup and Restore software.
Windows 8 includes Windows 7 Backup and Restore, but renames it Windows
7 File Recovery, which is located in Control Panel. You
can make system images of your entire Windows 8 hard drive onto a
portable hard drive. Make sure to burn the Repair Disk to restore your
entire hard drive in case of disaster. Additionally, Windows 8 File
History itself makes rapid backups of your data files, once it is setup
to do so. If you own a laptop, use a large capacity SD card for Windows
8 File History backups. A
portable hard drive
(USB 2.0 or 3.0) is recommended for all system images and large data
backups. Why not have multiple backups, since you can keep your files
safe over the Internet with secure sites such as mozy.com, which gives
you 2-GB of storage for free. Sky Drive and Dropbox also are valuable
free tools. You will need a broadband connection for online “cloud”
security purposes have others use a Guest Account.
This helps prevent installation of some malicious programs, but will
not completely eliminate all risk. All legitimate programs should be
installed by the main user (also the Administrator) with access allowed
by all users. The main account should be password protected to insure
curious people will not subvert the established security levels of your
PC. Additional users should be Standard users so that the
Administrators password is needed to install programs or make system
changes. Install Sandboxie (see #2). Note that
Sandboxie is not compatible with all computers and is not for business
use without a license, but can be used for personal use on a business
click on a link in an e-mail whether it is from a stranger or from a
known acquaintance, unless you expected the e-mail. It may unknowingly
be a link to trouble, as spammers and bad guys have no qualms faking
any email address. You can avoid malware written into the code of
digital pictures by setting your local e-mail program to read all
e-mail in plain text. After doing so, all the nice formatting and
pictures will not be viewable; neither will porn, spam, or digital
picture viruses. Web based e-mail services, like Yahoo and Hotmail, are
imperfect, but usually keep their spam and virus filters up to date.
Web mail offers the advantage of running under Sandboxie where you can
right mouse click on links and select "Open in new tab". This prevents
infections from being unleashed on your computer, but only if you
always surf the web with the sandboxed web browser.
blindly use the trial software that comes preinstalled on a brand name
PC. Why? Because it is a trap to get you to pay more than you would for
the same software purchased on sale, or to dissuade you from using
alternate software. If you want MS Office 2010 or 2013, determine which
of the many versions you want and then buy the retail version,
preferably when it is on sale. The retail boxed version of 2010 may be
installed on two computers. Card keys may be installed on only one PC.
Retail Office 2010 Home and Student may be installed on three PCs, but
not on business computers. Office Home and Student 2013 may only be
installed on one computer. Save your retail disks and the product key
for reinstalling software when needed in the future.
connect and remove all cables from the computer with the power turned
off and the power cable unplugged. The only exceptions are USB
(Universal Serial Bus) and FireWire cables. They are designed to have
cables plugged in and removed with the PC on and running.
your computer locks up and doesn't come back to life after 15 minutes,
hold the power button for about 5 seconds to shut down the PC. Then
restart the PC. In Windows, go to Windows Explorer, right mouse click
on the C drive, select Properties, and click the Tools tab, in the
Error Checking area left mouse click on the Check Now box, click on
both boxes, and click Start. Windows will tell you that it cannot run
the program and ask if you want to run it at the next reboot. Select
YES. Go to the Start button and restart the PC. Upon rebooting a
utility will run and fix any error that may have occurred. Windows will
restart normally after the chkdsk utility completes. The test may take
ten to twenty minutes or so to run and fix any file errors caused by
the lockup. If you have thousands of photos or music files chkdsk may
take over an hour. Let it run anyway. If the drive turns out to be
damaged you will still have your externally backed up files. Remember
to backup often as issues will occur, eventually, with all computers.
you want to remove a program for whatever reason, run Uninstall from
the "Add or Remove Programs" or “Programs and Features” Icon in Control
Panel if you do not see “Uninstall a Program”. Manually deleting
program files using Explorer, or other file utilities, will create
system and registry errors and may cause problems such as lockups, blue
screens, or slow operation.
your system came with AC powered speakers, turn them off when not in
use or when you don't want to hear sound while using the PC. Control
the volume using the speaker's volume control. While there is a
software volume control built into Windows, it is most useful for
setting the various device levels, microphone, CD, line, and system
.wav files so they are the way you like it.
not change the CMOS or BIOS settings (done at PC start up by pressing
the Delete, or other specific, key when prompted on screen) unless you
are certain you know what will happen and what you are doing. This is
not an area to experiment on as some incorrect settings will prevent
the PC from functioning.
use the CD or DVD for any other version of Windows to add or remove
system components. Use only the disc that you received with your
computer. Only install programs and drivers designed specifically for
the version of Windows on your particular PC, or you are likely to
to popular belief you can create problems by
arbitrarily hitting various keys. There are key combinations that cause
actions. You will become familiar with keyboard shortcuts over time.
They are usually shown next to menu selections that have associated
keyboard shortcuts. For example, pressing the Ctrl and the C keys at
the same time will copy into memory text, and/or graphics, highlighted
or selected in a program. Ctrl & V pastes the text (or
graphics) into the same or another program.
you are responsible for proper use of your computer. When unsure how to
do something in Windows, check the help files built
into every Windows program and the operating system itself, or simply use
Google to learn what to do. Use Sandboxed Web Browser, if
installed, to avoid drive by infections.
is no need to use screen savers. In fact, we recommend against the use
of screen savers as modern monitors do not "burn-in" like older model
monitors did. Typically, we set up your PC to turn off the monitor
after 15 minutes, or so. Simply move the mouse or click a button to
turn it back on. If the PC is in sleep mode, you may need to press the
power button to have the PC back up and running in seconds.
a battery backup/UPS (uninterruptible power supply) to ensure clean
power enters the PC and to prevent shutdown, and corresponding lost
data or corrupt files, during brown outs or power outages. A minimum
power rating of 350 VA is recommended. One of the main reasons to use a
UPS is to prevent power supply stress during periods of voltage drops,
which occur most often during the summer. If your power completely
stops, the UPS will give you about five minutes to save your work and
shut down the PC. You will have peace of mind after you put one to use.
A UPS battery normally lasts three years.
for free sites to watch movies or TV can lead you to infections. Use a
sandboxed browser to block downloads.
you start hearing clicking or dull clanging sounds from your PC, or see
warning messages that the drive needs files backed up and replaced, the
hard disk drive is failing. Back up all data immediately and have the
drive tested and replaced if needed. Or, turn the PC off and call us at
(309) 523-3168 to do the work for you.
you have a big brand name Windows 8 computer make sure that you burn
your recovery disks, and do not put this task off. Microsoft decided
that you can no longer do a clean install of Windows 8 using the
product key on the case sticker, since there isn't one anymore. So, if
you do not have recovery discs (or flash drives) for Windows 8 be
prepared to wait weeks while the recovery disks you order for your
Chinese made Dell, HP, etc., PC are shipped to you. All previous
versions of Windows came with product keys to allow customers to
quickly have their PC's serviced and clean or upgrade installs
performed if needed. Only small shops like J&R
PC now offer Genuine Microsoft Windows 8 that come with case stickers
with product keys that allow clean optimized installs when needed.
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registered trademarks of their respective companies or mark holders.
All J & R PC Computers are assembled in Port Byron, IL USA
with components that comply with existing FCC regulations.