Tuesday, 3 July 2007


Internet down again all day!
My brother-in-law has always been very good with computers and knows virtually everything there is to know about them. In his spare time, he helps people when they have problems and the wonderful thing about him coming to stay - he offered to have a look at our two machines and improve their performance, etc! I love visitors like that!

He showed us how many programmes were running automatically in the background - totally unnecessarily. You can trigger them when you want them to run - so why have them slowing down your PC's performance all the time?! We now have an extra icon in our Control Panel which allows us to un-tick these programmes - they have a nasty habit of resetting themselves to run automatically. That makes the PCs so much quicker!

Next he also looked at my various protections. I have always had in place a very high level of blocks (for pop-ups, cookies, spam, etc) - and have instilled in the children the do's and don'ts of using the Internet, and we have been very lucky so far. Only one potential virus got through in four years. In general I have used the Microsoft free programmes because I find them as good as the highly expensive ones on the market.

I was therefore pleased that Steve also thinks it is not worth paying for programmes like Norton, Macafee, etc. He explained that there are other excellent 'free' programmes available, and that in all his work he has yet to find a product that detects everything - you are better using a few different ones. His current recommendations are:

1. Spybot Search & Destroy
2. Ad-Aware SE Personal
3. AVG Anti-Virus Free Edition

So these are now installed on our PCs and I am running them once a fortnight. I was surprised at what they found that had not been detected by my normal programmes!

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