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Hartland Computer Repair
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Hartland Computer Repair's posts

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Here's pretty much all you need to know and more. July 29 is the date. Windows 8 users may want to circle it and get up early!

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I don't think this is earth-shattering, it's some guy reporting on what some other guy said, but it's interesting.

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The trials might do in a pinch but keep reading for a nice free alternative that will be useful for 90% of what we do...

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Don't be fooled by the bad guys. We see evidence of these things on malware-infected computers all the time.

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See our interview on hacking taken at our sister shop, Campus Computer Repair.

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Here is another spot-on article by the guys at Emsisoft (an antivirus software company) about PUPs (less delicately referred to as Crapware) and how they get on your machine. This junk causes more frustration that viruses and is what makes a Windows PC not fun to use. We clean this stuff up all the time and will get a computer working fast again, but your best bet is prevention and that means vigilance.

And if you are looking to download and install freeware or shareware programs, we recommend http://www.snapfiles.com. They tend to have fewer bundled PUPs and normally tell you in the description of the software if there is something bundled with your target application.

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One thing that we consistently see on slow computers and computers that won't connect to the web are these poxy and dubious "Driver Updaters". They promise to make your computer better, faster smarter but in fact they don't.

Your drivers don't need updating unless you've got a specific problem. And, you're more likely to break something with a general update than you are to fix anything. But this all assumes that all these programs do is to dutifully update your drivers. Alas, they appear to be doing much more than that, hijacking your searches, installing other dubious programs and trying to feed you advertising are some of the things we've seen.

If you feel like you need to update your drivers, the safest thing to do is to go to your computer manufacturers site and download the latest version of drivers for your particular computer. DO NOT GOOGLE "Driver update" or "Driver for xxxx" EVERY RESULT IS A SCAM.

Happy computing.

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IT'S STILL NOT TIME TO BUY A WINDOWS 8 COMPUTER! But it might be soon.

While some of our competitors have been busy trying to make money by selling Windows 8, we have been steadfast in our advice to our customer that they avoid Windows 8. Windows 8 was a disaster we saw coming and many of our customers are thanking us for sharing our insights on this.

But now Windows 10 is on it's way. We've installed the preview here and, just like Windows 7 was what Windows Vista should have been, it looks to us like Windows 10 will be the winning improvement to Windows 8.1 that we had hoped it might be. Surely soon, we'll start seeing Windows computers being sold with guaranteed free upgrades to Windows 10. It's too soon to buy in to that, you'd have to use the abysmal Windows 8 for a year and life is too short for that. But maybe next spring.

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You have got to get 2-Factor Authentication going on any accounts you can. I won't kid you, as the article states, it can be a bit of a pain but not nearly as much as having your accounts taken over - I've had a number of customers suffer through this, it's bad. This week, Microsoft forced me to reverify all my devices and then wouldn't accept logins from my mail apps. That turned out to be a nice learning experience about "App Specific Passwords". If you turn on 2FA and start having login problems, look up App Specific Passwords, Google and Microsoft have them, I would assume that others do as well
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