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Computing Resolutions for 2009

Many people make resolutions at the beginning of the new year that typically include items such as losing weight or quitting smoking. This year why not try a different set of resolutions and improve your computing environment and experience in the new year? Listed below is a recommended list of resolutions to give you a jump-start into starting your own list of resolutions.

  1. Backup your computer at least weekly.

  2. It is the most basic and well known preventive measure for protecting your data but it is also the most neglected. To make it easier, create a schedule and integrate it into your usual routine. This will help make backing up your system become a regular habit and not a chore.
  3. Keep files organized.

  4. By creating a central location for all your data files not only is it easier to find the files later but it also makes finding files much easier. I suggest creating a main directory (I have one called work) and then create subdirectories under to file your files by name or type depending on your preference.
  5. Scan computer regularly for viruses and adware.

  6. Like backups this is one the of the best preventative measures a user can take to protect their computer. Make sure to keep you virus scan software current and set it up to scan your system daily for any viruses or adware. Typically most software will scan files, internet activity and email in real time but it is still advisable to manually scan as infections can sneak by the best software.
  7. Defragment hard drive monthly.

  8. Improve speed and file access by defragging your hard drive on a monthly basis. The defrag process reorganizes the hard drive so that files that have been “fragmented” across the hard drive are
  9. Keep hardware and software current.

  10. Make sure that any software that you are running is patched with any updates or fixes that have been provided by the manufacturer. Updates are usually available online or through the Help menu within the software. Likewise, if any hardware is not working properly or is causing problems make sure the most current driver for the hardware is installed on the system.
  11. Learn new software.

  12. Trying a new software package can make using your computer much more enjoyable or provide additional functionality. There are thousands of software packages available that range in price from free to rather expensive based on the type of software. If you are not interested in a learning a new software package then a make a resolution to learn new features in one you already installed.

Happy New Year!

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