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Maintenance regime, advice & comments invited.


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#1 McLiam

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Posted 24 May 2013 - 11:49 AM

Having followed the path of least resistance for years--i.e. waiting for problems before doing anything--I've decided to try another way.

 

Below is what I've set up:

Have I left anything out?

Any foolish redundancies?

Anything else I should do?

 

Thanks,

 

Mac

 

TASK, FREQUENCY:

Malware Bytes, Loads at Startup; WinPatrol, Loads at Startup; Norton 360, Loads at Startup; MS Defrag, Monthly; MS Clean up, Monthly; MS Check disk, Monthly; ARO registry, Weekly; Seatools HD Scan, Monthly; Panda Active Scan, Monthly; Secunia Software Inspector, Monthly; CCleaner, Monthly.

 

 



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#2 Mr Gibberish

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Posted 24 May 2013 - 01:04 PM

I prefer to not only avoid pc problems, but also to avoid troubleshooting them, should any arise.

This is what I do:

 

Hard Drive 1 = Operating System + Programs

Hard Drive 2 = Personal Files

(I have a laptop now, so I can't do this anymore, now all data is stored on 1 drive, but separate partitions which is a little more risky)

 

clean install of the OS, and then make a backup image using (WinPE + Dism)

Install Service Packs and any other updates I want, and then make a backup image using (WinPE + Dism)

Install Drivers, then make a backup image using (WinPE + Dism)

Setup my preferences, then make a backup using (WinPE + Dism)

Install Core Programs (Meaning security related softwares only like antivirus and disk protection...disk protection softwares aren't enabled), and then make a backup using (WinPE + Dism)

Install ALL of my softwares + setup their preferences, then make a backup using (WinPE + Dism)

 

I use shadow defender or windows steady state (my core programs, shadow defender is better but steady state is organized nicer and is free) to prevent changes to the C drive, meaning that if my OS works now, it will work tomorrow...unless I SAVE a change.

That said sometimes you need to SAVE a change or a bit of disk corruption messes things up. No problem, I have backup images which means my system is back up and running in less than 20 minutes, re-enable disc protection and it's like nothing has changed :) . I also use a good antivirus product that has a strong firewall (another 1 of my core programs).

 

If I need to install updated versions of software (I make sure they work bug free before commiting to a new image) or install updates for the OS I start back at one of my older images...rather than degrade a current image...the idea is to keep the system acting like a fresh install, because technically it always is (seriously the images have less than 5 hours of run time on them, so that's pretty close). I rarely use Windows Update though, I find it better to use service packs, as I don't mind being alittle out of date and it makes it harder to get a bad update since bugs are usually worked out by that time.

 

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#3 hamluis

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Posted 24 May 2013 - 01:34 PM

Just understand...all replies will be personal opinion only...nothing that anyone should cast in stone and...probably varying from person to person :).

 

My first contrarian comment...will be the idea that there is some correlation between the passing of time...and the use of your computer.  I don't believe in the idea that doing whatever once a month or weekly or whenever...is controlled by the passage of time that has no correlation to whatever takes place on the system.  Aside from installing critical updates ASAP and updating your AV program ASAP...the system tends to let users know when preventive maintence should be done, IMO.  Systems with high usage (like mine) will provide indicators, if only users will look and pay attention.  Systems with low mileage...well...I've never had one of those and maybe scfheduling is the thing to do.

 

Malwarebytes...really no reason to keep it installed, let alone schedule running of it.  It's an on-demand scanner but...IME, it has never outperformed using an updated, reliable AV and SUPERAntispyware.  I just use it to verify what those two have found on infected systems belonging to people I know and elect to clean periodically.

 

I have no opinion of what WinPatrol might be used for.

 

Norton programs are overrated in the minds of the public.  That doesn't mean that they are ineffective, just that there are other AV programs that do just as well, if not better...and do so with less burden on the system.  Combine that with the fact that one pays for it...and it's not on my list of things to do :).

 

Defragging is one of the more neglected tasks which users should do routinely...on each partition that is part of the system.  However, I see that you have neglected to understand that the chkdsk /r command...is far more important and should also be run routinely...probably more often than the defrag command.  In addition, as a general rule, I suggest running the chkdsk /r command...anytime that a user decides to defrag...before beginning the defrag.

 

Programs like ARO...should never even be contemplated as worthy of installation/use on a system.  Since most users have no idea what "the registry" might be...I find it utterly amazing that such users feel compelled to install/use "registry cleansers", "registry optimizers" and the such.  Who was it that said..."there's a sucker born every minute?  Rather than start a long diatribe about such programs...I'll just say that an intelligent user will not install/use such.

 

No need to scan a hard drive on a scheduled basis...they don't fail on a scheduled basis :).  I have right now hard drives which I bought 10 years ago and they are fine and I also have 3 SSDs which are fine.  The time to run a hard drive utility is...1) before installing any O/S...2) when you start having strange problems with varied errrors and functions.  The reason I suggest doing before install should be obvious...the hard drive is the foundation on which the partition and file system (and Windows) will rest.  As for problem situations...hard drive failure or problems occur with far more regularity than just about anyt other mishap other than file corruption (and hard drives can cause file corruption).

 

Panda is a good AV.

 

Secunia Software Inspector...is somewhat overrated, IMO.  Every program which I have installed that needs updating...already has a mechanism for updating automatically or letting me know that it needs updating...so Secunia really doesn't do anything that isn't already done, IMO.

 

I cannot believe that anyone...would plan on scanning with AV monthly...when there are new malware threats being foisted on all of us daily or momentarily.  But, that's just my perspective.

 

CCleaner..another app that does primarily what Windows offers in the way of cleanup functions...but also includes a "registry cleaner".  This app draws a black mark from me because it considers dump files to be of no value and deletes such automatically...when the truth is that dump files are often the only indicators of what may be wrong with a given system.

 

Just my two cents...maybe a nickel :).

 

Louis



#4 frankp316

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Posted 24 May 2013 - 06:05 PM

Having followed the path of least resistance for years--i.e. waiting for problems before doing anything--I've decided to try another way.

 

Below is what I've set up:

Have I left anything out?

Any foolish redundancies?

Anything else I should do?

 

Thanks,

 

Mac

 

TASK, FREQUENCY:

Malware Bytes, Loads at Startup; WinPatrol, Loads at Startup; Norton 360, Loads at Startup; MS Defrag, Monthly; MS Clean up, Monthly; MS Check disk, Monthly; ARO registry, Weekly; Seatools HD Scan, Monthly; Panda Active Scan, Monthly; Secunia Software Inspector, Monthly; CCleaner, Monthly.

 

 

 

 

Before I disagree with Louis about two items, I will only say one thing. I think you are going overboard. What you are doing is unnecessary for the average user. And it's funny how you say nothing about Windows Updates or the most important thing of all, safe surfing habits. I scan with my security product weekly. I get that from my cable company. And I scan with weekly with Malware Bytes and Superantispyware. My two minor disagreements with Louis.

 

 

 

 

Secunia can be very useful for the average user because it automatically checks and updates automatically. But if you have version 3.0, go back to 2.0 as it works better. But it scans automatically weekly. You don't need to do it manually.

 

 

 

 

Though I agree with the board policy regarding registry cleaners, CCleaner does one very useful thing that nothing else does. You can set it up to automatically clean out your recycle bin, junk files and temp files each time you boot up. I have checked and there is nothing else that does this. And the apps that do clean out that stuff are too complicated for the average user. 






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