You’ve been through a lot together, your computer and you.

February 18th, 2013 | by Admin |

Shopping, socializing, searching for an emergency how-to at 3 a.m. – for issues great or small, your computer has probably fired up and given you just what you needed at just the right time.

So when do you know when to pull the plug on a sick computer, and when to rescue it?

The advent of new features and quick upgrades spurs some users to ditch last year’s model for something newer, faster, and sleeker. But if your computer does all you need it to, and what matters is on the inside, you likely will hold on to your PC or laptop for longer – and closer to the end of its natural life cycle.

To make sure you’re getting the best 4G Internet you can get, call Clear internet. You’ll want your computer running at max efficiency with the best wireless Internet connection available.

Just like gradual weight gain or the onset of crow’s feet, your computer’s reduced efficiency can sneak up on you. Boot-ups take longer. Page loads crawl along. Then one day, you get the dreaded blue screen of death.

Your computer is sick.

Here are a few questions you must ask yourself in determining whether to put the unit down mercifully and go shopping again, or leave it in the hands of a computer doctor to resuscitate:

Can you finish a task without having to troubleshoot?

It’s like that old car you have to hold the key just right to start, or enter only through the passenger-side door: You get used to the “quirks,” even when they become obstacles. Rather than becoming an expert at workarounds, go all-in on solving the problem once.

A fix: Uninstall the last program installed. Target the program that was installed just before the problems began. If you want to reinstall it, be sure to reboot before and after you do so.

Recycle if: Reinstallation doesn’t do the trick, or a program patch cannot be found.

Are you hearing new music when you start up?

If your computer plays “It’s a Small, Small World” or Beethoven’s “Fur Elise” at random, it’s not just for entertainment. It’s a warning sign – the computer’s BIOS is telling you the CPU fan is failing or has failed. It could also mean power supply voltages have drifted out of tolerance.

A fix: You can buy a replacement CPU fan for as little as $40 online. If it’s a matter of power supply voltages, you’ll likely need a professional repair.

Recycle if: The computer is older than 3, or this isn’t your first time with this issue.

Does your computer corrupt Microsoft documents when you try to save them?

It can annoy you, and the word “corrupt” might make you want to toss the unit. Corruption seems so unfixable, doesn’t it? But a little TLC and maintenance can alleviate the problem and keep it from popping up again.

Other common overestimated signs of computer apocalypse include the computer asking to be opened in safe mode, not allowing a user to print, or cycling through opening windows but not getting to the desktop screen.

A fix: First, back up any data you have stored on the unit.

Run a chkdsk /r from the recovery console. This will display your file system integrity status and fix logical file-system errors.

Second, run a virus scan. You should set your antivirus software for continual or periodic scans, but you can also run one on command.

If that fails, perform a system restore from safe mode. Again, don’t forget to back up your data!

If one of these solves your issue, be sure to renew any antivirus software and heed security software expirations. As with the engine light on your car, ignoring these maintenance measures won’t make the problem go away.

Recycle if: You don’t have the time or interest in maintaining your computer. Ignoring these warning signs could lead to a hard-drive failure that could cost $100 to replace and $300 to have serviced. In that case, the cost of repair starts to become prohibitive. It’s then time to buy.

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