[bct] PC Maintenance

  • From: <maryemerson@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "bct" <blindcooltech@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Wed, 1 Feb 2006 22:16:53 -0800

    Riz and all,

I have a few comments and corrections regarding your podcast.

1). Firewall installation:
Putting a software firewall on your PC is essential if you have cable, DSL or 
any other permanent or frequent Internet connection. The firewall, if it is 
accessible, will ask you whether or not it's ok for Windows or an application 
to be allowed to send or receive information from the outside world. Most of 
the time it's ok, but sometimes a hacker may be trying to get in. The firewall 
will learn what's ok and what's not after a while, but the first week is 
typically annoying because it will ask you about everything it doesn't know 
about.

2). System restore: 
It doesn't usually restore the PC to the factory defaults; it is more commonly 
used to bring your system back to a prior setup. This is extremely useful if 
you plan to install a new piece of software that might interfere with the way 
you have things set up. As an example, before installing the new program, or 
even changing system settings, go into system restore and set a checkpoint; 
this checkpoint (I believe the restore program calls it a restore checkpoint) 
will save all your current settings and configuration, and you can also save 
the registry. Then install the program. If the program messes up your system, 
you can, if you are able to boot into Windows, go back into system restore, and 
you can choose the very first option, which is to restore your system to what 
it was before the program was installed. You usually have a lot of choices of 
what to restore,  because there are times when Windows automatically does a 
system checkpoint for you, and all checkpoints are saved for 90 days.

3). Defragmenting: 
Before you defragment, you should shut down your anti-virus software, shut down 
your software firewall if you have one, and disconnect from the Internet (if 
your connection is always on, just take out the cable that goes to your DSL or 
cable modem; the reason I suggest this is that, very often, these types of 
programs will change something on your hard drive, and, when the defragmenter 
senses something has changed, it has to start over at the beginning of the 
process, and you may never get a complete defragmentation. Your system should 
be as isolated and stable as possible when you defragment your hard drive.

I've been there and done this a number of times so am speaking from experience. 
I hope this helps someone out there.

Mary 

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