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What kind of tips do you have for a new laptop user? Antiviruses, overheatingetc


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#1 kelvl11

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Posted 05 January 2014 - 10:47 AM

I just bought a new laptop and was wondering if you anyone had any tips for me along the lines of laptop longevity, what kind of protection malware to download/get and taking care of my laptop. At the moment I use ESET antivirus. This is my laptop http://speccy.piriform.com/results/7DhbhThQVDa1BQv7WQYh7wL



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#2 Problem_Solver

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Posted 06 January 2014 - 01:00 AM

Hi Kelvl11,

 

The life of your laptop will be it's longest if you are careful with its physical care:

 

1. Your laptop is very sensitive to shock, liquid, heat, cold, and other forces of nature. Be very gentle with it.

2. Most laptops have an air intake vent on the bottom - keep it on a flat, hard surface. This helps the laptop cool properly. Imagine running a marathon in 115 degree weather, but wearing gear to climb Mt. Everest. Your computer needs to "sweat". if it's sitting on a blanket or something with lent or hair, it's going to get sucked into the laptop. Which brings me to...

3. Dirt, dust, and hair inevitably gets inside computers. Over time (usually 2-3 years), these particles form a solid layer that prevents hot air from leaving the laptop through the exit vent. That is why many old laptops (XP, Vista, Older Windows 7) run very hot - much hotter than when they were originally purchased. Take your laptop to a professional to have your heatsink and fan cleaned. Having this cleaning done BEFORE it becomes a solid wall (aka a problem) may very well add years of life to your laptop. (Starting now, you can use canned air to blow out the vents on a monthly basis to keep the wall from ever forming. Once the blockage forms, canned air will not push the blockage out. 1 can should last you a long, long time. It just takes a few small squirts.)

 

Clean your laptop's screen with lens wipes. I highly recommend Zeiss lens wipes. They are the best I've used.

Clean your laptop's plastics with Lysol Disinfecting Wipes and paper towels. Lysol brand doesn't leave streaks like the other brands do.

 

I personally recommend AVG's paid product. Windows Defender is an acceptable free alternative. ESET should be fine. Check out Hitman Pro for a malware scanner (Paid scanner).

 

Realize that keeping your computer virus free is a 2 part process. 1st, have an antivirus. 2nd, practice safe internet.

 

An antivirus is likened to a cop that puts on a bullet proof vest before his shift begins. It does not make him bullet proof. If he recklessly runs headlong into somebody firing bullets at him, he's probably going to get shot in an unprotected area and killed. His behavior determines whether he lives or not - not the bullet proof vest.

 

DO NOT DOWNLOAD FROM ADS ON THE INTERNET. Be very careful while on the net for that matter. You can turn a computer useless in a hurry.



#3 rotor123

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Posted 07 January 2014 - 03:41 PM

Hi, I completely agree with the steps above, Especially #1 and #2

 

I hate to tell You how many laptops I saw come into work that were ruined or damaged by liquid spills.

My water for example is in a bottle with a lid. My coffee cup looks like the one below to prevent tip overs.

 

https://encrypted-tbn1.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQZKCAunlsW0UjMUuHqeNC87vCAfN5NiG9qbDIcFOYYr2-yIu1Mv3ygxg

 

Think layered protection, Antivirus and Something such as Malwarebytes Pro.

 

I bought My last laptop when Windows 7 was released, Now years later it still looks like new. It runs better than New due to having been upgraded with More memory and a SSD drive. I keep it in a metal sided laptop case when not in use.

 

Good Luck with Your New laptp

Roger


Fortune Cookie says: Fortune not Found: Abort, Retry, Ignore?

Sent from my All-In-One Desktop. Perfect for Internet, Not for heavy usage or gaming however.

How Does a computer get Infected? http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/t/2520/how-did-i-get-infected/
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#4 kelvl11

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Posted 09 January 2014 - 10:05 PM

Much thanks! Especially the information about dusting early, and wipes. I'll probably go for malwarebytes, and Avast after my eset expires. 



#5 Scoop8

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Posted 10 January 2014 - 10:35 AM

Good advice from Problem_Solver and rotor123 .

 

I've been running Norton 360 and MBAM Pro simultaneously on my Desktop PC and Laptop for a little over a year with no issues encountered.  That's a hot-button topic (running the Pro version alongside an AV) and the Norton Forum members insist that it's not recommended due to conflict issues but offer no data/lab tests to substantiate the recommendation.  I think it's one of those topics that is best left in the "agree to disagree" category in some forum threads.

 

One of the top volunteers at this forum also recommends MBAM Pro to compliment his AV protection as well as numerous MBAM forum members that have been running the Pro version alongside their AV's for years with no problems reported.

 

I've tried to educate myself on this topic and have read about MBAM's scan engine and how it is designed to compliment the mainline AV products in real-time mode.

 

Regarding ESET, I switched to Norton after running ESET for about 2½ years after experiencing unsatisfactory results with ESET's performance after it had allowed several intrusions into my PC.

 

Great advice from Problem_Solver about safe 'net practices.  It will prevent most malicious incidences but, my advice, I'd recommend buying a spare HDD for any new PC and cloning your original HDD for a complete bootable backup spare HDD that will protect you from several things:

 

- HDD failure

- Almost all malicious infections (fast restoration).

- User error, mistakes.  We all make them :).

 

I would also buy an "Enclosure" to use with a routine backup plan, Imaging, cloning. I have a 2.5 Enclosure that I bought at Amazon for around $10.00 U.S.  I've been using mine for about 3 years for periodic cloning and full-HDD Imaging.

 

Regarding the 'net threats, the last couple of times that I was infected, I had been running ESET at that time (without MBAM Pro at that time as well).  I was surfing at one of my daily reputable sites and got hit with one of the "FBI" ransom malicious variants.  I guess one point about it is that one can practice safe habits, not opening any e-mail attachments, avoiding questionable 'net sites, and still get hit with one of the many 'net infections that are out there.

 

That's why I recommend maintaining a periodic backup routine.

 

I've twice recovered from malicious infections during the past couple of years with my cloned HDD.  I was back up and running the PC within minutes after installing the HDD and avoided the need to download cleanup tools and seek online help. 

 

That doesn't minimize those tools and experts at all.  They help countless PC users daily at forums around the 'net.  For those that prefer another method of recovery/cleanup, backups offer that alternative.

 



#6 rotor123

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Posted 10 January 2014 - 01:27 PM

Much thanks! Especially the information about dusting early, and wipes. I'll probably go for malwarebytes, and Avast after my eset expires. 

 

One Quick Note:

Malwarebytes Pro, The paid version offers real-time protection and malware removal

Malwarebytes Free offers no real-time protection and only helps cleanup already infected computers.

 

Good Luck

Roger


Fortune Cookie says: Fortune not Found: Abort, Retry, Ignore?

Sent from my All-In-One Desktop. Perfect for Internet, Not for heavy usage or gaming however.

How Does a computer get Infected? http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/t/2520/how-did-i-get-infected/
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167 @ June 2015


#7 MakeItBetter

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Posted 12 March 2014 - 09:03 PM

One of the first things you should do is make a recovery drive (usb key, usually).

 

...I like the idea of a spare HDD...

 

Thanks a Million!

 

Jann


Edited by MakeItBetter, 12 March 2014 - 10:36 PM.


#8 MakeItBetter

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Posted 12 March 2014 - 10:39 PM

 

That's why I recommend maintaining a periodic backup routine.

 

I've twice recovered from malicious infections during the past couple of years with my cloned HDD.  I was back up and running the PC within minutes after installing the HDD and avoided the need to download cleanup tools and seek online help. 

 

So you periodically make a hd backup image?  What software do you use?



#9 rotor123

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Posted 13 March 2014 - 02:32 PM

For myself I am using the built in Windows 8 tools and as a second line of defense I am also using

http://www.paragon-software.com/home/br-free/

I bought their Paragon Migrate OS to SSD software as the Samsung software wasn't working when I upgraded this to a SSD. Their Software did work for that.

 

There are others that I have used in the past, Acronis, Norton's software etc.

 

Cheers

Roger


Fortune Cookie says: Fortune not Found: Abort, Retry, Ignore?

Sent from my All-In-One Desktop. Perfect for Internet, Not for heavy usage or gaming however.

How Does a computer get Infected? http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/t/2520/how-did-i-get-infected/
Forum Rules,    The BC Welcome Guide

167 @ June 2015


#10 Scoop8

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Posted 13 March 2014 - 06:37 PM



One of the first things you should do is make a recovery drive (usb key, usually).

 

...I like the idea of a spare HDD...

 

Thanks a Million!

 

Jann

 

Hope the suggestion helps your PC setup.  The way I've looked at it is that for most of us, the PC has become a necessity in our daily routines.  Since HDD's ("spinners") have become affordable for most budgets, I prefer to have 1 for cloning and another for my "test" HDD.  I'll occasionally test my full-HDD Images and do a "restore", mainly to verify the complete "recovery" methodology so that I'll know it works in the event of encountering a failed HDD or a malicious infection that I don't want to spend time in seeking out online assistance in cleaning the affected HDD.  I'd rather be able to recover locally by maintaining a full-HDD backup activity on a periodic basis.

 

I can also use one of the HDD's as additional storage space if needed, video files, etc.

 

 



 

 


So you periodically make a hd backup image?  What software do you use?

 

 

2r3v6he.jpg  I usually clone every 2 weeks although that will vary from time to time.  I'll Image (full HDD) less frequently since that process takes a lot longer on my PC.

 

I've used these 3 cloning / imaging tools:

 

- Acronis (2011 paid software)

- Macrium Reflect (free ver)

- Clonezilla (freeware)

 

I mostly use Acronis since that takes the least amount of time (about 35 minutes) for cloning with my PC.

 

I have the other 2 tools basically as a backup option in case I encounter an unforeseen issue with Acronis.

 

Since I've started cloning periodically (and Imaging occasionally), all Target HDD's (after cloning) except for 1 time, have resulted in bootable verified spare HDD's.  When I first tried to clone with Macrium, my Target HDD didn't boot.  The reason was, I was following a YouTube tutorial that was using the "drag and drop" partition method, which did result in a complete copy of my partitions but didn't clone the MBR.  When I tried it the 2nd time, all worked ok.  It was just a matter of where to "click" in the Macrium user setup dialog screen.

 

I like Macrium's user gui interface, it's a user-friendly dialog (my opinion).

 

Clonezilla is a great freeware cloning and imaging tool but (my opinion) it's geared toward the more experienced user.  I've cloned a couple of times with it and all worked ok but, as with Macrium, the cloning duration takes longer than with Acronis so I just stay with Acronis for most of my 2-week clonings.

 

Clonezilla is a good one to have handy on a CD or Flash Drive since you can use it without installing the tool onto the HDD.

 

The main 2 things I'd suggest regarding cloning or imaging is:

 

- Use the bootable media, CD or USB stick, to clone or image.  It's not necessary with some cloning & imaging software (you can clone or image within Windows, etc) but when booting up into RAM on the media, you're testing and verifying the complete "rescue" scenario, if you need to recover without a working OS or have malicious content on your everyday HDD and prefer to wipe the affected HDD vs running various cleanup tools to sanitize the HDD.  There are numerous malware / virus experts that recommend this anyway, since that's one way to virtually guarantee* that you'll have a clean HDD ready to return to service.

 

* There are rarer instances where a complete HDD overwrite may be required but, as yet, in the 2 times that I've replaced my Source HDD due to malicious content, I've only had to delete the partitions on the infected HDD and re-cloned to it.  That has resulted in a clean bootable spare HDD.

 

- Test the Target HDD or restored image to verify a working bootable complete copied HDD on the shelf ready to use if needed.

 

Imaging: I don't verify all of my full-HDD images due to (on my PC setup) time constraints but I test enough of them to verify a recoverable image in the event it's needed.

 

Cloning vs Imaging:  Both formats have their advantages, in my opinion.  I prefer cloning for my periodic 2-week HDD backup plan since I have a couple of spare HDD's and, for me, they're a lot faster recovery method vs restoring a full-HDD image.

 

Imaging is great for storing multiple PC's (or multiple images) onto 1 external storage device.  I have an external HDD where I have stored a couple of full-HDD images for my Desktop, Laptop, and my Mom's Desktop PC.

 

The storage HDD remains disconnected (except during image processing, due to possible encryption-malware, ie "Cryptolocker", etc.

 

Imaging is also advantageous for storing "chain" backups, incremental or differential.  I don't use these methods at present since I'm mainly using Macrium Free version to Image and the free version doesn't include chain (scheduled) imaging. 

 

I'm definitely a HDD backup geek :lol:  but after one time a few years ago, where I got hit with one of those malicious intrusions that was blocking my browser access, bogus popup's telling me "You're infected with massive intrusions....  click 'here' to fix your PC" , I made a vow .... "Never again" :lol:  .

 

For me, there's several reasons to maintain the complete HDD backup, and they're all good reasons.






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