- Usually come in your e-mail from someone you know - the programs
spreads undetected by the person whose computer sent it to you.
GOOD anti-virus software with UP TO DATE virus signatures. Antivirus
software without current updates will not help you very much. Also,
if you do have a virus and you attempt to install Antivirus software,
the program will often not install properly.
We always ensure that the PC is clean before attempting Antivirus
- usually caused by downloading 'free' screensaver programs, music
download programs such as Kazaa, or installing 'special toolbars'
or 'cool cursors'. These programs track where you go on the Internet
and send advertisements to you based on that. This can be why you
are getting so much spam and so many pop-up ads.
The best thing you can do at this point is to uninstall the Spyware
on your system. However, this won't help the problem you already
have - it will just prevent it from getting worse. Ad-aware by Lavasoft
AND Spybot - Search and Destroy can help you with this - check out
our links page for information about this free download. BEWARE!!!
Many so-called anti-Spyware programs cause MORE HARM THAN GOOD.
Stick with the recommendations we offer to be safe.
times, a small Spyware problem can become overwhelming that is possibly
over your head. We have a lot of experience
dealing with these issues and stand ready to help.
- unwanted and unwelcome e-mail advertising
- this can come from a variety of sources; Spyware, Internet 'contests'
that are designed to gather information about you, or by being active
One approach is to change your e-mail address, and use anti-spam
techniques such as never downloading Spyware (however, often you
don't know you are getting Spyware!) and by writing your email address
in such a way that it can not be 'harvested by programs that scan
the Internet to develop 'mailing lists - instead of using, for example,
email@example.com, you can put yournameNOSPAM@provider.com or
yourname-at-provider(dot)com... a user will know what to do but
a program designed to gather email addresses will not catch this.
approach is to use anti-spam software. This will not totally eliminate
all spam but it will cut it down a great deal. You can also configure
your Internet browser to sort your mail by keywords, this can help
a lot but it is not the total solution. Spam is a war where there
is not a clear winner yet.
ads - You know what they are!
There is software designed to stop pop-up advertisements and it
seems to work quite well. However, some pop-ups are desirable and
you may need to turn off the software at times to do what you want
to on the Internet, for example, with some Internet baking and other
sites you need pop-ups... so you need to control them without totally
eliminating them. You could consider switching from Internet Explorer
to Firefox, and if you need help with that, let us know!
- There are certain problems that are known issues with older versions
of Windows, especially, Windows 95 and Windows ME but also with
Windows 98. Windows 2000 and Windows XP have a different software
infrastructure that is not as limited as the '9x' group.
Make sure all software fixes and upgrades have been installed correctly.
If so, consider upgrading your operating system.
THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN DOING
AN OS (OPERATING SYSTEM) UPGRADE
am I doing this?
(If it WORKS, why 'fix it'?)
my computer run the new operating system?
(Will I need to upgrade my memory, or processor? Is my hard drive
my other software compatible?
(Check with your software vendors and be sure!)
a new operating system can be simple, but sometimes there are major
problems. TechDoc can help you with your
upgrades and give you the expert help you need.
back up procedures - critical data being lost
- To paraphrase a Neil Sedaka song, 'backing up is hard to do'...
it just never seems like a priority and it's hard to remember to
do it when it never seems like you need to. Think of it in the same
way as buckling up your seat belt. The only time you really need
your seatbelt on is when you are in an accident (or when you pass
a police officer who is checking with compliance to the seat belt
law). The problem is, do you know when the accident will occur?
If you DID, it wouldn't be an accident! This is an undeniable truth
- somehow, sometime, somewhere, you will have a hard drive failure.
When, not if, you do, are you prepared? Are you STAYING prepared?
Find a backup routine that works, and DO IT! There are new solutions
available today that we can help you with
that are cost effective and 'forget- proof'.
parts wearing out or 'dying'
- things happen, you just need to get your PC fixed when they do.
This is easy... give the TechDoc a call.
Sometimes what appears to be component failures are really caused
by one component or possibly a virus. We will get to the root of
the problem and get your PC running right.
you buy cheap, you get cheap!
- the super super low price computer that you purchased a few years
back may be having more trouble than you think it should. These
computers are often harder to obtain parts for and the parts are
usually a bit more expensive.
When it is time to replace that computer, call
us for recommendations.
problems due to lightning and bad power
- this is a major problem in the Houston area.
A UPS (uninterruptible power supply) is recommended, or, at least,
a high quality surge protector can help. Also, remember that electrical
spikes can travel through your phone line as well so you'll need
to protect your modem lines as well.
- Caused by damaging virus infestation.
Usually requires reinstallation of system software, and occasionally,
reinstallation of the operating system. Sometimes it is less expensive,
due to the excessive time required to track down the damage to reformat
the hard drive and reinstall everything from scratch.
- Some people like to go through their computers and 'clean out'
files that 'seem unnecessary'.
Please resist the urge - go dust off the knick-knacks instead. There
are ways to 'clean' your hard drive but unless you really know what
you are doing, you can cause problems that are hard to fix.
or poorly written software
- Be very careful when you install software. Older software can
overwrite shared system files with older versions that will not
work with your newer programs.
Do not install game software on your mission critical PC - gaming
software has a higher than average likelihood to cause problems.
Also, make sure that you are not attempting to install software
that is not written specifically for your operating system. If this
has already occurred, a Tech-Doctor can
attempt to replace the older system files with newer ones.