PC Maintenance Software: Computer Repair And Maintenance Tips

by Rod Dunne on May 2, 2010

in Articles, Performance

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The worst sight any Windows PC or laptop owners could possibly see is the dreaded blue screen of death. This is a screen of exception text stating a terminal error has happened leaving you no option but to reboot.

The following preventative maintenance checklist detailsĀ  several practices that Windows PC users can execute to decrease the chances of such problems happening. These fall into two key areas, hardware and software, as follows.

Reduce The Number Of Peripherals Used

Avoid running a large amount of peripherals connected to your machine. The main problem is USB hubs or splitters. Using peripherals that consume small amounts of energy is fine (e.g. keyboards). Note that the USB connection provides a power supply so the more devices it powers, the greater the strain. This can help when my computer is slow by reducing any background processing involved with keeping the peripherals on standby.
(See also: Our advice on USB data recovery if the hub is damaged and the drive gets corrupted)

Update Often

Make a point to update the O/S and application drivers regularly, as over time software vendors release application improvements that fix errors and security issues. The better vendors provide automated update checks with their products to help you out with doing this.

The Microsoft Windows Update service will be the first port of call for PC repairs and maintenance. These updates fix Windows minor bugs but you’ll also find critical security updates which are essential to keep up to date to safeguard your computer.

Security & Virus Protection

There is the ongoing danger of receiving hacker attacks to your PC while connected to the net so it is essential security practice to have a firewall installed along with spyware protection and virus scanners. Nowadays, there are even free versions of this software available so there is no excuse not to use them. Be sure to keep the applications and their virus databases up to date. Our article on USB protection details options for securing USB flash drive data.

Install Surge Protection

Use a power strip that has built-in surge protection since if there is a power cut in your community or some household appliance blows a fuse then there is the chance of a power surge being sent to your computer which will burn out its electronic components. This is fatal for most machines.

Drop The Screen Savers and Use Hibernation Mode

Screen savers are really poorly named as they don’t save your screen. This was true with older monitors where pixel were more easily damaged resulting ghost images that were constantly displayed on screen. However, modern monitors use less power so there is a lower chance of such damage.

One unfortunate myth about screen savers is that they conserve energy – which is not the case. If you want to conserve energy then use the Standby mode in Windows. An even better solutions is to use the Hibernation mode. Standby keeps the machine ticking over but is still using a small amount of power.

Hibernation Mode takes a snapshot of the applications running on your system and then shuts down the computer completely, which saves power and saves the electronics from continual usage.

Remember that your Windows computer has hundreds of components and circuits that have a well-defined workload capacity and shelf life (see our article on predictive maintenance software for a discussion on component lifespans). The above actions can help keep your computer running within these constraints and therefore working better for longer.

Related posts:
How to reboot your computer

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