Re-Post: Basic Computing Information

For about a year and a half, I have been working for a large retail corporation in their tech department. For the first 6 months, I worked with someone that knew a lot about computers and he helped me learn a lot but other than his informal training I have learned on my own. Here are a few things I have learned and these are just my opinions so don't get mad if you try something and your computer gets fucked up.

1. Startup Applications:
     a. On Windows 10 you can hold CTL ALT and DELETE, then go to task manager, then to details at the bottom, then to the startup tab and disable any applications you know don't need to start on boot-up. Programs like MS One Drive, or Dropbox, or trial versions of programs might be on your computer and running on startup, taking up processor power and RAM space. Don't disable programs you don't recognize or find out what it does before disabling it. Having fewer programs start when you turn the computer on will make the bootup faster and save processing power for the programs you do want to run.
     b. Some applications, such as Skype, virus protection programs, and plug-ins might start automatically but may not be on the list described above. You should be able to go into these applications directly and look for settings related to startup options.

2. Viruses:
     a. Get a paid virus protection or at least use Windows Defender. Don't use a free one from the internet because they tend to pester you to upgrade and run too many popups. Also, don't download those driver helper programs. They waste space, tend to run on their own and too often. You don't need to update your drivers all the time.

3. Passwords:
     a. Know your passwords! Write them down or use a spreadsheet and keep them up to date. If your feeling trustworthy download a plug-in called Last Pass for chrome and it will remember all your passwords and automatically plug them into most sites. Be Aware! This program is not perfect and you are still responsible for maintaining your own passwords! Also, Remember the answers to security questions. Make them memorable!

4. CCleaner and Malwarebytes are Free! (Know your passwords before running CCleaner!)
     a. Malwarebytes is awesome and easy to use. If you can't figure it out don't worry about it.
     b. CCleaner deletes old temp and cached files as well as deleting outdated registry files. These all take up space and can slow down processes. These files often contain "remembered" information such as passwords, form data, or history. For example, you may need to re-log into websites that are normally automatically logged into.

5. Back up your shit!
     a. Computers and hard drives can fail and you can lose all your data so make sure to back up your data. If you use an online service like Carbonite or Dropbox make sure you know the terms of use and your account information. Otherwise, you can buy an external HDD or Hard Drive Device. The cost per gigabyte is very reasonable. For around $60 you can buy a 1 Terabyte HDD and put a ton of data on it. Just plug it in and copy files from your computer over and you'll have a backup just in case something happens to your computer.

My Minimum Requirements for basic use:

- Intel 7th i3 Processor or better (i5 or i7 or i9) (8th gen is newest)
- 8  Gigs of RAM (memory) or more.
- 256 of SSD (Solid State Drive) or 1 TB (Terabyte) or more internal storage.

FYI when buying a Windows 10 machine:
Windows 10 updates a lot. Check your settings to minimize annoyance by setting "active hours".

What about Chromebooks you ask?
These are great for a particular purpose. They are good for going online, utilizing Google's online applications and probably a few things I don't know about. They do not have WINDOWS 10 as an operating system. They have a small amount of internal storage capacity. Google expects you to utilize online storage options. For streaming and using Google applications such as Google Docs, Sheets, Photos and Drive this is a great platform.