Are Your Computer Programs Current?

Aside from getting files and the office in order first of the year, we find this is a good time to review software programs and computer equipment. Below are a couple of things to think about.

Virus Software

If you’ve purchased a multiple-year down-loadable software for virus protection, i.e., AVG – then you will want to get in touch with the tech people at the beginning of the year to get a download of their current program. This program will have been updated from last year’s 2012 version and cover many new virus problems not covered in the older version.

When calling, have your original purchase information ready in case needed:

  • License Number for paid version previous year
  • Email used for purchase
  • Credit Card number used for purchase

All of these will verify your original multi-year purchase and make getting the new version easier. If you are not comfortable downloading and installing the new version of the program, ask the tech to do it for you. Downloading the new version will involve uninstalling the old program as well as the associated tool bar. Also, this new version will have a new license number you’ll need to make note of. If you have paid for protection on more than one computer, you’ll need this new license number for installation and activation.

We’ve always used AVG and found them to be the best virus program out there.  To learn more about the protection offered by AVG,  please visit this link.

Note: Always keep your computer updated for any program you may have installed: Windows, Adobe, Flash Player, Firefox, Internet Explorer, etc.

Computer Equipment – Printer

For those that may have purchased a 64-bit computer but still have 32-bit equipment, i.e., printer, you may find you will not be able to print to the old printer from the new computer – or scan from the old printer to the new computer. While you may be able to find driver updates to download, if you find the printer still won’t work – and you decide to buy a new, compatible printer – don’t get rid of the old printer. Set it up to be used as a stand-alone fax machine and copier.

Computer Equipment – Battery Back-up

A purchase we’ve found that has saved us problems more than once is a battery back-up.      Having a battery back-up is a must if you have important files on your computer, experience power outages or are away from the office with the computer unmonitored.

Having a battery back-up functions two ways:

  1. Won’t lose your work should the power go off
  2. Should the power go off when you’re not there, it will shut-down your computer based on a pre-set time . This helps  eliminates possible damage if power comes back on or if there are major fluctuations in the electrical service.

The size of the back-up you need will depend on the amount of time you need to have your computer operate after you lose power.    To learn more about the different battery back-ups available, visit this link.

Software – New Programs

Seems most of the time when purchasing a program off the Internet, it is a download. Before paying, always check to see if you can purchase and have shipped a hard disk copy of the program. The extra few dollars will be well spent if you get a new computer or find you need to re-install the program at a later date.

Recap Five Favorite Free Programs

Xheader – professional looking graphics

Open Office – open source office programs

Inkscape – graphics program

Alleycode – HTML Editor

Filezilla – FTP program (uploads files)

When downloading any program, be sure to read all the Terms & Conditions as well as system requirements before downloading.

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