PC Recycling

Maintaining your computer

Maintaining your computer is essential for having great quality and life of your machine.

There are many routine processes to keep your computer running the way it should.

First there is checking and removing viruses and malware. This can be done by keeping your anti-virus software up to date, also can be done by doing routine scans with programs such as Malwarebytes to find any other malware or spyware. It is a good idea to do 2 or more different types of scans because there is a change that the first one can miss it, or be fooled by the infection.

Second, is cleaning out the computers registries. This requires programs like CCleaner.  Don’t be fool by fake “PC Optimizers” that clam to be registry cleaners. Those are actually Malware.

A third way to maintain your computer is by cleaning out unused temp files, which can also be done with the program CCleaner. Removing these can clean out a lot of Hard Drive Space and also have the Hard Drive run smoother.

Fourthly, there is defragmenting the Hard Drive. Over the use of the computer, the Hard Drive saves files that might be in pieces instead of 1 chuck of data in order to fit the data being saved on to the Hard Drive. With the process of defragmenting the disk it helps place those pieces of the files together to increase the performance of the read write speeds of the Hard Drive.

Lastly there is keeping your computer fully updated. Not only will keeping it updated greatly decrease your chances of having vulnerability towards viruses and other malicious software, it will make your computer run more efficiently and add more features to your system.

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Bottlenecking

Your computer needs an upgrade and you don’t want to spend money on a new computer? That’s easy! All you need to do is find what is “bottlenecking” your system. Bottlenecking is a term for the slowest running part of your system that is holding the performance back from the rest of the computer. For example, say if you had a top-of-the-line brand new 4th generation i7 processor, but only 2 GB of ram. The low memory capacity will hold back the processor to run programs as it should. So a low cost solution would be to upgrade the ram to allow the processor to utilize more of its power.

The most common bottleneck in computers is Hard Drive. Most computers will usually only be sold with normal Hard Drives, but by upgrading to a Solid State Drive you can immediately start to see the changes. Normal Hard Drive speeds are about 80-100 Mb/s, while Solid State Drives speeds start at around 550 Mb/s. This speed enables faster load times for starting up (5-7 seconds), shutting down, and all of your programs will load up almost instantly.

System Working Memory (also known as RAM) is another source of bottlenecks. Operating systems, apps, and programs are getting more complex with added features, requiring more memory. To tell if your ram is bottlenecking you, just go to your Task Manager (ctrl + alt + del, and select task manager) and go to the Performance tab. Run programs that you would usually run and watch how much ram is being used. If it is over 80% of memory used, you might want to look into upgrading ram. You can actually do the same thing to see if your CPU is your bottleneck as well, just look at CPU usage instead of Memory. If that is the case, you may be able to add a lower end graphics card to your machine and remove the job of generating video from your CPU to free up more power else where.

If you have any questions or need help anything, give us a call at 403 320 6434.

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Battery Maintenance

Batteries keep all of our mobile devices running. They are in our laptops, tablets, phones, hand held gaming devices so it makes complete sense to maintain them to keep our devices running.

Laptops have a lot of built in power settings to help keep you running for longer. You can set your Power Plan to reflect on what you want to do, more power or more battery life. You can even utilize some software from manufactures that come pre-installed. Try not to have your laptop constantly running over long periods of time while plugged in with the battery in it. The laptop will draw power from the battery then start charging it up again, constantly draining and charging the same battery  cells in the battery, eventually lowering the overall time the battery can run. If you are going to be leaving your laptop running over a long a period of time just leave the battery out while still plugged into the wall.

Don’t leave it fully charged; lithium-ion batteries don’t need to be charged all the way to 100%. In fact, they’d prefer not to be! The best charge to have them at is around the 40% to 80% mark. Another thing you can do is to fully discharge it once a month. Batteries now have the ability to tell us how long we have until it dies out. This time can be miscalculated after using it over a month’s time span, so completely discharging it then fully charging it can make that time a lot more accurate. And most importantly, keep it the battery cool, a battery running hot can greatly shrink its charge and overall life time, not to mention burning yourself!

Cleaning men

Spring Cleaning!

With the arrival of spring, it is time to make sure your computer is clean from dust.  A build up of dust greatly reduces not only the performance, but also the lifespan of your machine.
A can of compressed air is the most common tool to complete this.
Never use a household vacuum! They not only generate a lot of static, but they are also blunt instruments that can damage the sensitive components inside your computer.

If you haven’t cleaned your computer before, follow our 6 step guide:
1. Blow all of the dust out of the computer heatsink and fan. Make sure you approach it from all sides to ensure it is clean.
2. Blow out your power supply. This is done from both the back of the computer and the inside of the computer.
3. Blow off your chipset heatsink and the rest of the motherboard.
4. Blow off your video card.
5. Blow off your hard drive.
6. Blow out any loose dust in the case to prevent it from being sucked into a fan.
Depending on how recently you cleaned out your computer, this could release a lot of dust in the air. Make sure you do this in a well ventilated area, typically outside. Use short, controlled bursts with the air can. It is common for them to become extremely cold and lose pressure while you are using it. If this happens, let it sit for 5-10 minutes to warm up before you begin spraying again. Also, make sure you do not shake the can or use it upside down as there is a liquid inside. If a little bit of the liquid comes out, don’t panic. Always let your computer sit for 10-15 minutes after cleaning to make sure any residual liquid has evaporated.

For a deeper, more complete clean, ask us about our deep cleaning service!

Give us a call 403-320-6434