Back to Work? Prep Your Computer!

 

With COVID-19 restrictions around the State slowly lifting, many businesses are gearing up to get back to work. Unfortunately, many of us have let our computers and software fall out of date simply because we’ve not been in the office using them!  

On top of that, general computer hygiene for those of us who have been working from home has lessened. We understand that it can be incredibly easy to use your work computer for your personal life. Whether it be downloading Spotify, doing online shopping, or playing video games, it’s time to clean up your machines and get them functioning back to normal speeds.  

Let’s use this break as an opportunity to fix up our computers and build some healthy habits. Here are some steps you can take to make sure your business and computer resources are ready to hit the ground running: 

  1. Uninstall unnecessary programs. Some programs slow down your computer’s loading and startup time, which can be annoying AND a time sink. Uninstalling those programs that we don’t need any more is a great way to increase the load time of your computer. If you don’t want to uninstall them but still want to make your startup time faster, then at the very least remove some programs from the startup list by following the steps listed in this Microsoft article: 
    https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/4026268/windows-10-change-startup-apps 
     
  2. Update your computer and software. Keeping your computer and software are up to date will not only keep you more secure, but also improve your computer’s speed and loading time! Instead of ignoring the update notification and popups (let’s be honest, we all do this), take an hour or two to run through the updates and make sure your computer is up to date. 
     
  3. Install Antivirus. It goes without saying that you should be using Antivirus on your work computers. The reality is, many people see Antivirus as an annoyance or just unnecessary. We’ve all been improperly trained for years regarding Antivirus. Programs such as Norton or McAfee can be annoying when they drastically slow down your computer’s operating speed, and constantly notify you of updates and sales.  Luckily, there are a bunch of alternative Antivirus programs available that are minimal and barely affect your computing experience. Here are a few that we can personally recommend. 
    1. Vipre – Good all-around. Easy Install and management https://www.vipre.com/ 
    2. Webroot – Very powerful, a little more aggressive than others but it catches almost everything – https://www.webroot.com  
  4. Start using Password Managers. We all know that we should be using password managers, but it’s so much more convenient to write down the password on a sticky note and put it in your monitor. Please stop doing this (seriously, just stop). If you have a hard time remembering all your passwords, just let a program do it for you. For more info, read our post “Top 3 Password Managers from an I.T. Pro’s Perspective”.