Here are 10 simple things you can do to keep your PC in good shape & secure -
- Install Sufficient RAM - If you're running on an older system that only has 1GB or 2GB of RAM, you ought to consider upgrading your RAM to 4GB. This is a simple, inexpensive way to boost the performance of your system and prevent the thrashing of your hard-drive.
- Use an Anti-Virus Solution - You should always run an anti-virus soution to keep your PC protected from viruses and other malicious software. Invest in a good (not a FREE one) anti-virus solution and keep its signatures up-to-date at all times.
- Use a Security Firewall - You should never go online on the Internet without a security firewall in place. At the very least you should have a software firewall installed on your PC, and as far as possible, you should try and install a hardware firewall as well. Fortunately many wireless routers these days provide some hardware firewall functionality as well with only a little bit of configuration.
- Turn-on and use Windows Update - If you're running on a Windows operating system, you should definitely turn on Windows update so it can keep your operating system up-to-date and keep you protected from any Windows based vulnerabilities.
- Keep your file system organized - A little bit of effort in keeping your file-system organized can go a long way in improving PC maintainence. For example, if your PC has two hard-drives, you should install the OS on one, and store your data on the other. Or, even if your PC has only one hard drive, you should try and keep the Windows and OS directories clean of any of your files such as music files, pictures, videos etc.
- Think before your install software - You should be very careful about installing software on your PC that you may have downloaded from the Internet, particularly if its FREE. There are many malicious programs out there couched as free utilities, and if you install one on your system, it could not only compromise your PC, it could also be used to engage in identity theft.
- Don't Browse to Suspect Websites - It is always a good idea to use some common sense while browsing to ensure that you don't end up accessing malicious websites which could have malicious code executed in your browser resulting in a compromise of the security of your PC.
- Create Monthly Restore Points - Depending on what version of Windows you're running, you may be able to generate restore points. It is always a good idea to create restore points ever so frequently, perhaps once a month, so that if you ever encounter a major issue and need to restore your PC back to a last known working state, you could do so with a system restore.
- Periodically backup your files - It is also a good idea to backup your important files, such as documents, persona pictures, music, family videos etc onto a portable drive or the like, so that even if your PC were compromised or stolen, you would still have a copy of all your valuable files.
- Use a strong account password - Please do consider using a password to protect your account, and if you do, might as well use a strong password that is hard to guess for others. Running a system without a password provides the easiest avenue for someone to access and compromise your PC or your data.
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