Should I reboot my computer?
The first thing any IT guy or gal will ask you when you call him with a computer problem is if you tried restarting. An infuriating question to be asked when you just lost three days worth of work, or that work just won’t save and you have a meeting in 5 minutes. However, a lot of computer problems can be solved by simply restarting the device.
When a computer goes without a reboot for an extended period it becomes prone to a bit of bugginess. These annoyances include programs running at a slower pace than usual, unexpected system freeze-ups, and lagging Internet speeds. That horrible call to the IT guys in the basement can be avoided with a simple daily restart. Here’s why:
Clearing the RAM
A program open and running on your screen stores much of the data required to do so in the memory, and sometimes not all the data is cleared out when the program is closed. This data can clog up your RAM causing “memory leaks”; meaning that there may not be room in the computers short term memory for a new program to open up. When this happens your computer will run slow, glitchy, and the blue-screen-of-death might make an appearance forcing a restart.
A preemptive “off and on again” can flush out all the random, unimportant, and temporary data bogging down your device. This will keep you computer running at the speedy pace you have come to expect.
Many program updates need reboots to complete. This includes your Operating System, whose updates don’t take effect until a reboot occurs. A fresh install or update tends to scatter data in several places, a restart will tidy up the mess and arrange it properly on the hard drive. Some programs won’t even run properly without a restart because the information isn’t where is is supposed to be.
Just like the RAM, a system’s processor can become overworked and overloaded by all the processes that are trying to run at the same time. A quick reboot can provide your CPU with a fresh start, and without all the nonsense filling up the processor's poor little cache.
So now you know why the phrase, “Have you tried turning it off and on again” has become a technological cliché. A quick restart will not only fix some annoying computer issues, and prolong the life of your machine.
Of course, if you’re having any problems that restarting you computer doesn’t solve, give your friends at Tech Force a call!
The different types of Computer Mice
Nowadays, it seems like we’re just about surrounded by some form of technology at all times. Most jobs even require a little bit of a background with computers, especially desk jobs and the like. While the majority of us are pretty confident in our abilities to work around a desktop, there are small details in plain sight that we don’t always catch. Specifically, the different types of computer mice we work with.
The Mechanical Mouse
It used to be that the only type of computer mice was the mechanical mouse, which harbors a hard rubber ball within that translates its movements along a surface into information, which is then sent to the desktop and allows you to move the cursor around as you please. But, all good things must come to an end, as did this old tried and true mouse.
The Optical Mouse
The most common, and one you’re probably using right now is the optical mouse, which is far more convenient than the mechanical mouse because instead of using a ball that could become dislodged, it uses an LED sensor to detect movements along a tabletop, which is of course sent off into the computer like the former.
The Wireless Mouse
Wireless mice come in two types, the infrared and the radio frequency. Both mice relay signals to a base station wired to the computer’s mouse port. Considering they don’t have a cord to directly connect them to the computer or laptop, both types also require batteries or some form of charging. Even with the small disadvantage of occasionally dying on you, they are very easy to carry around on the go if you’re someone who travels a lot, and there’s the added benefit of not having to deal with messy cordage tangles. Good stuff!
The Trackball Mouse
Similar to the function of the track pad on laptops, a trackball mouse looks a lot like a mechanical mouse placed upside down with the ball facing upwards that you’d move manually with your thumb or index finger. While it definitely takes a while to get used to in comparison to its other mice mutations, but because it stays mostly stationary, it doesn’t need a lot of room, and it likely wont tangle as much as others might. You don’t really see many of these out in the wild any more.
That’s just a very very brief rundown of the different types of computer mice.
If you have any questions, or need any computer help, feel free to give your friends at Tech Force a call!
A simple trick to stay safe
Avoid exposing yourself to malware: When installing software, always choose the “custom” option.
If given an option to choose a “custom” installation vs. “express”, “recommended” or whatever, always choose “custom”.
Why? Because chances are that they are trying to trick you to installing bundled third party programs, browser extensions, or tool bars (yes, those are still a thing). By choosing a custom installation you can uncheck these unwanted and occasionally malicious installations.
Be careful though, some of these third party vendors are getting a bit sneaky. Hiding or moving the “decline” button or even disguising their installer as a “terms of service” that needs to be accepted.
As always, if you have any questions about how to remove some of these third party problems, want to know whether or not a particular program is safe, or have any other questions at all, feel free to call us here at Tech Force.
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