Things You Should Know

About Your Computer

This applies to any computer (copyright 2000, Gene's Computer Outlet)

1 Static Electricity will destroy your computer. Make sure you plug in the computer and turn it off before connecting any connections such as keyboard, monitor, modem, printer.

2 Never plug in any device to the computer with the power on. This applies to the keyboard, printer, scanner, tape drive, external modem, mouse, and monitor. Damage will result!

3 Use a quality Surge Protector. You must also protect the phone line as more surges destroy computers through the phone line than the power line. Every thing connected to your computer must also be connected to the surge protector including printer, monitor, scanner, and external modem transformer. Failure to protect everything is a "back door" into the computer.

4 CD Disks for computers when scratched cause errors unlike music CD's. Protect them. Allowing kids to handle them may shorten their life with scratches.

5 Know where your Windows Installation CD is for 95 or 98. Make sure you also have the "Certificate of Authenticity" number for that CD as it is required for re-installation of Windows. Do NOT lend this out.

6 Keep all original program disks where you know they can be found and are safe. You can not move programs from one hard drive to another or from your old computer to a new one. Lending them out may get you a scratched CD or lost disk. Your registration number on someone else's computer may also be a conflict when both computers report on the Internet.

7 Backup your data to another source if it is important. Do not store data on just one source as they also can go bad or get lost. Keep it in at least two places.

8 Never bump or move a computer while turned on. This will destroy the hard drive even though damage may not appear right away.

9 Check your computer with "Scandisk" occasionally. (a utility already on your computer)

10 Run "DEFRAG" monthly regardless of what the message says about whether it's needed or not. Anything over 1% slows down the computer. DEFRAG is on your computer.

11 Removing programs you no longer need or use may cause unexpected problems. Avoid this where possible. I have not seen any utility that is safe, although claims are made by publishers.

12 Extra Utilities such as Norton Utilities, First Aid, or Clean Sweep and many others cause more problems than they fix. Norton Virus detection seems to be the best and the only utility that I recommend. Keep it updated or it's no good. "Second Chance" junks up and slows down your hard drive unless you know what you are doing.

13 Games on a business computer may render it unusable for your business. Think twice before gaming on the same computer that your business relies on. Think twice about allowing your kids to use your home office computer unless you put separate hard drives on drawers and switch them back and forth.

14 Do NOT open email that you do not recognize.

15 Keep drinks and food away from the computer and all its components.

16 Clean the dust out of the computer, power supply, and CPU fan at least once a year.

17 CD ROM Drive doors are fragile. Beware when kids use them. Do not leave the door open. Do not use it as a coffee cup holder. Use care to insert the CD properly before closing the door.