Time to Refresh That OS!

One of the biggest problems most people face in any computer environment is the age of the hardware and software installed. When you have those funky errors that pop up every time you start your computer, to random blue screens of death. We have all seen these and they usually compound themselves into much bigger problems if not looked into attentively.  The key to maintaining your computer in a “Healthy State” is updating and routine maintenance. One of the most commonly overlooked items is Microsoft and apple updates. If you check your control panel on click or the about this mac icon you may notice your computer needs updates sometimes numbering in the hundreds! These are one of the easiest and most helpful ways to keep your computer running well. Run the updates grab some coffee and read the paper while the computer does the work. Reboot a few times and voila you have an up to date ready to go OS. If you have not enabled the choice to automatically download updates and install them do so. You can always stop them from running if you are in the middle of something but it will remind you like the kid in the toy store saying pay attention to me. Running basic updates for the OS is the most common of updating methods now it’s time to figure out what else needs updates. I love utilities that help make my job and my customer’s lives easier. There is a wonderful utility called patchmypc it does everything I like to touch on in terms of updating and it auto tasks...

Cloud Computing for the Common Man

Today we are going to take a look at Cloud Computing and the benefits it may provide for you.  Let’s start with what cloud computing is. The definition of Cloud Computing is simply the use of computing resources; such as software and hardware; that are located elsewhere.  These resources; while located remotely; are delivered to the users via the internet and then accessed through a web browser.  One great example of Cloud Computing is our email.  Our email is not stored on our computers, it is stored by the email provider’s company on their servers elsewhere. Needless to say, we can check if a computing process is truly Cloud Computing by checking to see if it meets the two requirements listed in the definition above. Now how about we look at why it is called Cloud Computing.  I know most of you are expecting some really detailed and confusing explanation that can really only be understood by a professional but that isn’t what we have here!  The reason it is called Cloud Computing is simply because the cloud is the shape that was used by the creators to visually symbolize all the complex resources, setting and interactions that occur.  Rather than listing everything that it could do it was simply called ‘the cloud’ after the symbol that was used Now that we understand the definition we need to understand why Cloud Computing is such a big deal!  Cloud computing has many advantages one is the ‘Unlimited’ Storage Capacity.   Cloud computing offers virtually limitless storage.  Whatever you need to store you can!  The space on your hard drive is nothing in...

“I Wish I Could Do That”…Well Maybe You Can. Have You Asked For Help?

Tutoring it is a word that makes me cringe a bit! When someone asks me for tutoring I bring my best to the table because when I was in school I HATED it. Teaching me was a difficult task, “I’m sure I made a few teachers sigh when they saw me every day in class”. But as my business develops and grows into something that is amazing and difficult at the same time I learn something new every day.  Now teaching others young or old is something I like to think I do well now. The hardest part about learning something new is that first step, the one where you ask someone else for help. It takes an immense amount of self-control and desire to fully engage in learning something new. That is where I try and do my best, when I represent my business I look people in the eye and start from their level this is a must. If I don’t have your attention or make you want to learn than I have already lost you. I have a few clients as of late they have wanted tutoring “there’s that word again” via remote sessions. This is a growing trend I think will get bigger and bigger within the next 10 years. WE HAVE THE TECHNOLOGY, IT IS POSSIBLE NOW!  It is cheaper than you think and the best part is you’re the only one in the room and the teacher has only you to engage. The options for remote technology not only tutoring but repairing and monitoring are in the pre-teen years. There are so many...

Ethernet Tech is How Old?

  A 40 year commemoration of Ethernet’s invention on May 22, 1973, a group of cloud vendors and users are launching the CloudEthernet Forum. It will be announced on the second day of the event in Mountain View, California, with the backing of Alcatel Lucent, Juniper Networks, Tata Communications, Citrix, and other founding members. Ethernet, originally a LAN, increasingly is also used for WANs (wide-area networks) operated by enterprises and service providers. The CloudEthernet Forum aims to make Ethernet better suited to large-scale cloud services that may operate across many data centers. Enterprise and service-provider clouds have grown to the point where they may have millions of virtual machines and, in the case of public clouds, thousands of customers. At that level, Ethernet can start to show some limitations, said James Walker, president of the CloudEthernet Forum. For one thing, Ethernet generates a lot of traffic for purposes such as record-keeping and discovering resources on the network, he said. With the huge numbers of tenants and virtual machines that can be active on a cloud service, that administrative traffic can multiply until it starts to crowd out the packets that the network was built to carry. For service providers, that represents traffic that doesn’t generate revenue, said Walker, who is also vice president of managed network services at Tata. The CloudEthernet Forum may look for ways to reduce that administrative traffic in cloud networks. Another limitation that Ethernet runs into on clouds is a cap on the number of virtual LANs that can be set up on one network. The limit is about 4,000 VLANs, which might be adequate within one...

Recycling Your Old Computer Parts the RIGHT Way.

Not your normal techy blog this week we are going to get dirty! Since I was a young boy I loved taking things apart. I have dissected more microwaves, toasters, radios and computers than I can remember. When I attended ITT Tech we had at every break room and bathroom a Tall white box with the Green Recycle logo on it. It was a treasure trove for me to look into and sometimes see a laptop that just needed a new screen or a keyboard. I thought how can someone just throw this away are they NUTS? I have become a stickler in the last 15 years or so about saving and recycling or even repurposing old computer hardware. Let me be clear (Best Obama voice) I am NOT a hoarder ok! But I do love it when I have parts for everything I need at my disposal. I love it even more when I can donate computers to charities or people in need.  There are people who are struggling just to keep the lights on and I can give them an opportunity in a box. Recycling is a household name and good or bad we all play a major role in the continuation of this beautiful world.  In Cape Coral, Florida where I live we have all been assigned garbage bins. We have the tan one for non-recyclables and the green one for all the rest. It was made easier for us and has become so popular that it is now just another way of life for us. I like to collect a large amount of recycles and...

Remote Computer Repair, the Benefits and Why You Should Try It.

  Now this is nothing new in the computer repair world by any means. The first remote computer repair was usually very limited with having to setup RDP on remote computers or just basic FTP functions. There were other options but nothing was made for an end user.  This involved either another tech on the other computer to setup or someone knowledgeable enough to not muck it up. Now in 2012 we have many options for remote repair applications. They are truly a techs best friend and a customer’s soon to be main go to source for quick affordable computer repair. We use programs like Teamviewer; this application is built for techs and easy to learn for beginner users.  My main talking points are all pretty much bulletproof reasons you should give this kind of service a try. Security: I know there is a certain amount of trust you need to have to allow a stranger into your home to fix a problem. The same holds true to allowing someone to gain full control over your computer. I think it goes without saying if my computer can connect to the internet I find it would be safer and quicker to get instant help. Rather than to setup an appointment than allow someone into my home. Now since my business does both on site and remote repair I can argue both sides. Vetting a repair company is crucial to a good decision and can be simplified by checking out a highly recommended company, that has roots all over the web and a strong local customer base. By checking those few...

Tech For Daily Use Is Changing Are You Ready For It?

When I started doing computer repair back in 1996 laptops were bulky machines that were overpriced, and you needed a nuclear power plant to run them more than a few hours. Today the trend is changing and not slowly either, it’s on the fast track to portability-ville! If you have not figured out what this blog is about yet I’m talking about tablets. By now you have seen them in professionals hands from you doctors offices to your kids hands. Tablets are becoming cheaper and more affordable than their predecessor, the laptop. As tech moves forward and starts shrinking in size and portability the important thing to remember is what benefits do you get out of using a tablet versus a laptop? I have a top 3 checklist I like to ask my customers to see what their needs are, and what budget they have in mind to get them where they need to be.   1. What do you use your current laptop/mobile device for?   Most of the time I get the usual response web surfing/email/watching videos/video chatting/ pictures, well you get the point. But sometimes I do get a customer who needs something that a tablet is not going to be able to handle well or at all. But they are still stuck on getting a tablet for the coolness factor. I would direct them into a laptop with a touch screen that folds into itself: the best of both worlds but and expensive option. 2. Do you need a lot of storage in your new devices?   This confuses some people because they just don’t...
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