Students will learn how to make their computer faster through a series of videos and written material (plus bonuses!). No special skills are required, only basic computer skills are needed. Emphasis was put on making material easy to understand and implement. A faster PC means more work done in less time, less aggravation & stress, money saved (instead of buying a new system try this!), more free time, and much more. Anyone from business owners to students, stay at home moms, gamers, and everyone in-between can use this and reap the benefits.
You'll be amazed at the performance increase you'll see just by removing viruses, spyware, adware and the like. And you're identity, data, passwords, and files will be safer.
If you don't have an up-to-date antivirus program because your subscription expired, you don't have an antivirus program in the first place, or you're not liking your current antivirus solution because it slows your PC down (a common complaint with many programs) or it just doesn't work, I recommend uninstalling your old program (if you have one) and then (quickly) following the directions in the lecture to download AVG antivirus (and save 20%) and install it.
In the next lecture, we'll show you how to completely automate your scans so you don't even have to think about it again!
Here we'll learn how to completely automate virus scanning with AVG.
Not using AVG?
Your program probably has similar options to automate scanning and it's a good idea to do so. Of course, it's impossible for me to cover every single antivirus program out there, but if you need help with this you may be able to contact your program's support and have them help you set it up to scan automatically.
There are two important rules when it comes to antivirus software: install one and only one antivirus program and use a malware tool(s) to remove spyware, adware, etc that your antivirus program might miss.
Here, we'll cover 3 free tools (one has the option for a paid version which is not necessary, but will enable automatic updates and scheduled scanning, similar to what we did with AVG) that should be used to supplement (not replace) your antivirus program.
A dying hard drive not only poses a serious risk for data loss, down-time, and expensive repairs; dying hard drives often slow your PC down before they finally bite the dust. Here, we'll learn about a quick, easy, and free way to test the health of the hard drive and what to do if it fails.
Removing unnecessary junk files that clutter the hard drive is another good way to boost PC performance. This is because files, folders, and programs are not usually stored in contiguous strings of data on the drive; rather they get broken into chunks and spread out across the drive because it is unusual to have an empty spot on the drive that matches the size of the file.
If you've ever cleaned out your closet, basement, or garage, you know that less clutter makes things easier and quicker to find and makes room for new, more important things.
For reasons discusses in step 4, defragging a hard drive often gives noticeable increases in performance. When a drive is defragged, pieces of the files, folders, and/or programs are compacted into more contiguous -- sometimes even one -- chunk so seek time rapidly decreases.
Note that you should never defrag a solid state drive as that may wear it out quicker. For solid state drives, the process is known as optimization and has a similar effect that defragging has on mechanical drives.
Well learn how to automate defragging/optimization so you won't have to think about it and your PC's performance can stay in tip-top shape. This was somewhat more difficult to do in XP, but Windows Vista and newer make automating defrag/optimization child's play.
Let's talk about a few other misc tweaks you can use to increase the speed of your computer. Checking the hard drive for errors is a good idea, especially if you had to shut the PC down improperly or a power outage occurred.
Limiting the programs that are automatically loaded at start up can increase boot time and also increase over all speed.
Finally, there are tweaks that can be applied to increase the speed of 2 popular Internet browsers.
This final step will walk you through a very simple and inexpensive way to significantly increase the performance of a computer. In fact, it is possible to almost double the speed of a PC (depending on a lot of circumstances) using this simple technique. Even if you don't quite double you're speed, this method will give you most bang for your buck out of all the other methods we've discussed.
If you know something about how computers work, you may already know what this technique is and how to do it.
Either way, DO NOT skip this part if you're serious about safely increasing the speed of your computer.
Even if you know what the secret is, maybe you have yet to use it or haven't leveraged it to the fullest...
Here we'll show you how to install the upgrade from the first part of this lecture. It is done on a desktop, but doing on a laptop is usually not that difficult and often easier.
No matter how many tweaks or upgrades you perform the day will come when you will buy a new PC. Maybe you want a new one, or maybe you're a business owner and have hired an employee. Perhaps you want to add a light weight laptop or tablet to your tech arsenal.
I'll walk you through how to buy a new desktop, laptop, or tablet PC. We'll look at the strengths and weaknesses of each, because they all have their pros and cons, we;ll talk about what specs are important and what to look for, and we'll talk about what you should expect to pay.
One thing is certain: computers are dust magnets (at least desktops and laptops are).
They are constantly drawing in cooler air from outside the case to cool the CPU and other components. With that cooler air comes dust, especially if the house has any smokers, animals, or is older. The dust gets stuck in the fan, heat sink, and other parts inside the PC.
In turn, this cuts down on the cooling ability and can eventually cause the PC to overheat and shut down or permanently damage the CPU and other parts.
This video will show you how to safely clean the dust from inside a desktop computer. Cleaning a laptop usually requires the machine to be disassembled, which can be complex and is often different for different makes and models of laptops. Unfortunately, tearing down a laptop is beyond the scope of this course.
Some pointers about laptops though:
Keep them on a hard flat surface when in use, never on pillows, blankets, your lap, or other soft surfaces as they will choke off the cool air supply.
If you want to use a laptop on your lap or in bed, place it on a large enough hard cover book, plywood, etc. Also, special laptop holders (with or with out fans for extra cooling) can be bought relatively cheaply for use in the lap or bed.
To clean dust, get a can of compressed air duster (or gas duster a.k.a. canned air) and blow into the slots on the back and/or side of the laptop AFTER it is shut down COMPLETELY. You may hear the fan (located on the bottom) spin and see dust spurt out. Make sure the fan slots on the bottom are not covered to expel maximum dust. Next, blow into the fan and watch for dust coming out of the cooling vent(s).
Brian Jenkins has had an interest in science, electronics, and computers since he was a child. He currently holds a Bachelor's degree in electrical engineering with an emphasis on computers. Since 2007 he has been running a computer repair & consulting firm in his area. Brian also runs several other small businesses. In addition to technology, his other interests include health and fitness, entrepreneurship, and brewing craft beer.