Monday, August 27, 2007


5 steps to help avoid instant message viruses.As with most threats on the Internet, you can help keep yourself safe by taking basic precautions. If you know how to avoid e-mail viruses, you'll already be familiar with many of these steps.

1. Be careful downloading files in IM. Never open, accept, or download a file in IM from someone you don't know. If the file comes from someone you do know, don't open it unless you know what the file is and you were expecting it. Contact the sender by e-mail, phone, or some other method to confirm that what they sent was not a virus.

2. Update your Windows software. Visit Microsoft Update to scan your computer and install any high-priority updates that are offered to you. If you have Automatic Updates enabled, the updates are delivered to you when they are released, but you have to make sure you install them. For more information, visit the Protect Your PC site.

3. Make sure you're using an updated version of your IM software. Using the most up-to-date version of your IM software can better protect your computer against viruses and spyware. If you're using MSN Messenger, upgrade to Windows Live Messenger, which will block attachments that might contain malware and allow you to scan attachments for viruses. For more information, see Windows Live Messenger Overview.

4. Use antivirus software and keep it updated. Antivirus software can help to detect and remove IM viruses from your computer, but only if you keep the antivirus software current. If you've purchased a subscription from an antivirus software company, your antivirus software may update itself when you're connected to the Internet.

5. Use antispyware software and keep it updated. Some IM viruses may install spyware or other unwanted software on your computer. Antispyware software can help to protect your computer from spyware and remove any spyware you may already have. If you don't have antispyware software, you can download Windows Defender. Windows Defender comes with Windows Vista. If you use Windows XP SP2, you can download Windows Defender for no charge.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007



1. Hard Drive clean-up

Delete .tmp files.
Empty the Recycle Bin. Delete files that begin with a tilde. When cleaning the system of garbage files, readers might also like to check for any files beginning with a tilde (~).
Delete old .zip files. Users tend to unzip the files but then leave the zipped file on their computer.
Delete .chk files
Check browser history and cache files. By freeing up the cache, downloads from the Web actually speed up since there is more space available to store the temporary files.
Clean out temporary Internet files

2. Check the operating system and applications.
Update your OS and applications with the latest service packs or updates. Save your company some money; don’t try to support multiple versions of the same application.

3. Update drivers as needed.

Make sure you’ve installed the latest drivers for printers, modems, sound cards, video cards, and other devices.

4. Create or update the boot disk.

5. Update the anti-virus software.
Make sure your users know how to update their anti-virus software.

6. Run Scandisk and defrag the drive as needed

7. Reboot the system.

In some shops, the workstations are left on all the time. While you’re there, reboot the system to force a memory reset and to make sure the machine will boot when you’re not there in person.
8. Physical Hardware clean-up

Clean the screens. Done with an appropriate screen-cleaning cloth and solution with your preventive maintenance visit.
Dust cleaning
Clean keyboards
Clean-out cooling fans
Clean the inside of the computer.
Clean the power supplies
Clean the CD-ROM drive. Many programs are installed corrupted from a dirty CD reader.
Clean the floppy drive
Clean the mouse.
Check the power sources. Make sure systems are plugged into protected outlets, power strips or UPS device.
Check the connections

9. Make sure the hardware works.

Check Floppy drive replace as needed.
Check CD. Clean replace as needed.
Check the power sources. Make sure systems are plugged into protected outlets, power strips or UPS device.
Check the printers. Print a test page on your users printers. Make sure the printers are producing clean copies, and that the toner cartridges aren’t about to run out.
Check the network hardware. It is also necessary to check and reboot hubs, routers, switches, and print servers from time to time.

10. Take inventory.

Update your master inventory of computer assets. Verify serial numbers, CPU speed, hard drive space, memory, etc.

Keep Your Computer Running Longer, Stronger, and Faster !!!