The operating system be it as refined as it may be, is still susceptible to certain types of damage as time passes. We’ll take for instance the Windows operating system. It has reached version its last version in 2009 and since then, it has received several upgrades in service packs and loads of optimizing tools. 2012 has arrived and with it Microsoft promises to bring us Windows 8, but until then, the Windows 7 OS is the main operating system used worldwide. Yet still, in spite of its high number of upgrades, it is still highly susceptible to errors created by various factors beginning with the accumulation of junk files and ending with the possible malicious modification of registry keys which can lead to much more complicated side effects such as program malfunctions or even the blue screen of death.
The force of all the combined side effects of these little problems can grow immensely over a longer period of time, and can actually trump the operating system. Try using a computer that hasn’t had its operating system installed in the past three years for instance and then clean it up and give it a run. We can tell you that the difference is simply outstanding. On the other hand (although not recommended) you can keep your computer alive and kicking for a long amount of time without having to reinstall the operating system.
We all know how nasty it is to have your computer crash in the eve of an important event such as a presentation or a term paper, therefore, in order to prevent these things from happening, here are some of the most “common courtesy” ways of protecting your operating system from all kinds of intrusions.
First of all, there is no way you will survive a long time without antivirus software to guard you from all kinds of virus threats. Considering that on the internet, about 10.000 viruses are born every week, and countless more derivations of the same virus strain, an antivirus software tool is crucial to the prolonged vitality of your computer. Nowadays you can find all kinds of antivirus software beginning with free ones such as AVG, Avast, Avira or the ones specially designed for the Windows 7 OS: Microsoft Security Essentials. These will most likely do their job well for the average user that doesn’t visit websites with heavy malicious content. Naturally, if you are a heavy user that is elbow deep in cracks and hacks and all kinds of network skullduggery, then you might want to consider something with a little bit more of a kick. I’m talking about some serious software such as Eset Antivirus or Kaspersky. These are two of the most powerful and paranoid antivirus software on the market.
Antivirus software usually comes with all kinds of upgrades and updates. Make sure you make them all in order to ensure maximum protection to your computer. An updated database means an active antivirus which is able to prevent the penetration of malicious software inside your operating system, thus protecting your precious intimacy and data. In order to make sure that no virus has penetrated your defenses, you can schedule a virus scan every week.
For those that do not have the Windows 7 OS installed and are still running on Windows XP, they might want to consider running the Scandisk program at least once a month for every partition. This tool is great when it comes to detecting file and hard drive errors. It is a great way of knowing whether your hard drive is slowly deteriorating so that you can save your information before it is too late and transfer it on a new hard drive. By keeping tabs on the integrity of the hard drive, you will never be in danger of losing your data without knowing it.
Now, in order to make sure that the Scandisk tool reaches maximum efficiency, you should turn off just about any process running in the background. This way, each of the processes that communicate with the hard drive are shut down, and the Scandisk tool can access that area of memory which was used before by another application. In order to shut down all processes, you need to press the key combination “Ctrl+Alt+Delete”. This will take you to the task manager which will allow you to forcedly shut down every process running in the background. You will see an entire list of processes that are governing the operating system and the network communicators. Shut them all down. All of them besides the “explorer” and “systray”. Once all processes have been killed, click on the Start button -> Programs -> Accessories -> System Tools and then select the Scandisk option. There you will be given a series of options that can restrict or enlarge the scanning area. If you want the Scandisk tool to scan everything simply select Scan Entire Hard drive. This may take a bit longer but at least you will have your entire hard drive scanned.
The Disk defragmentation tool is in many ways linked to the Scandisk utility because the disk defragmenter is the one program which is directly related to the speed with which Windows accesses your files on the hard drive. The disk defragment tool, unlike the Scandisk tool, will scan and organize all the files it finds on the surface of the hard drive. It takes a considerably longer period of time to complete, but the results will be worth it. For a better understanding, imagine the hard drive as a library filled with books and the books are all over the place. Basically the disk defragmenter starts analyzing the entire “library” and places all the books neatly organized and separates the blank spaces. The same principle is applied with the sectors of memory embedded on the hard drive. The moment the files are properly clustered Windows will no longer have to filter through blank files in order to get to the files it actually needs. This will considerably increase the speed of your system.
Exterior threats are omnipresent to users connected to the internet. Admittingly, internet security has considerably increased due to the modifications and precautions taken by internet providers, but that is not enough to protect you from a possible hacker intrusion. On the other hand, the firewall software does just that. It is a specially designed tool which filters all the packets that come and go to and from your PC. Furthermore, it has an unprecedented level of control when it comes to the applications you’re running on the computer. For instance, the firewall may choose to allow your messenger to communicate with the exterior, but may deny the same privilege to a game, if it considers it to be dangerous for your system.
If you are really interested in speeding up your computer, you should also consider pairing the capabilities of the firewall with a spyware checker. It’s important to detect if spyware has been able to infiltrate on your computer because such malicious software can be very damaging for the functionality of your computer. It can even lead to imminent system crashes. It’s possible to get spyware on your computer even if you have ensured a certain level of protection, because spyware is able to come in disguise and attach itself even to harmless internet content that you decide to download. Some of the spyware that reaches your computer can be responsible for little damage but there have been also recorded cases when the damage was hard to keep under control. That’s because spyware can be designed to retrieve to a third party the secret password that you use to secure your accounts or personal information that can be used, for instance by an experienced identity thief. That’s why you should consider running a spyware checker on your computer at least once a month, especially if you are passionate about online shopping and other similar activities.
Also important for the well being of your computer is the periodical deletion of temporary files. If you fail to get rid of those files, the virtual memory of your system will slowly but surely get extremely crowded. When the maximum limit allowed is reached, you will notice that the computer moves slower and even annoys you with errors messages and program freezes. That’s because every piece of information that you browse on your computer it’s saved somewhere in there and occupies valuable space. To get rid of those files, you will have to visit the browser’s Tools menu, select “Internet Options” and then the “General” tab. In the window displayed you will have to look for the “Temporary Internet Files” section and click the “Delete Cookies” and “Delete Files” options.
These are only a few of the actions that can lead to computer speed up. They represent the road to qualifying as responsible computer user.11 Buy Now!
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