Right out of the box, turning on your brand new computer may seem exciting and sometimes frightening because you don’t know what to expect, especially for new users. The computer turns on and you see a bunch of icons on the desktop and you are saying to yourself, “where do I begin?” Depending on the company or manufacture of the computer, you may be presented with loads of “shareware” software which are free trials that can be run for certain period of time like 30 days or 60 days. One of the most popular ones you will see in that instance would be Microsoft Office. When purchasing a Windows based PC, Microsoft makes sure they include their goodies, typically Microsoft Office and Internet Explorer.
The Good and Bad Software
As you continue to browse through your computer, you may bump into other software that you really don’t need which in my opinion only slows down your computer. You will find other trials for software such as AOL, Norton Security, McAfee Security, a bunch of games, dial-up services and much more. Because I am an experienced computer user for many years, setting up new users with brand new computers, I always either do a clean installation of Windows (7 or 8) or simply un-install all the programs that wouldn’t be needed by the user. I prefer clean installations because only the important windows software is installed and all the trials are eliminated completely.
If you did decide to keep either Norton Security or McAfee Security for your computers protection, make sure you purchase the full version of the software. Trials only give you limited functionality and when the time comes where your trial ends, you will be out of luck when a virus or malware invades your computers files or worst, your systems registry. When it comes to virus and malware protection, I automatically choose both Microsoft Security Essentials and Malwarebytes. Both programs take up a small amount of space when installed and don’t hog up all your computer’s memory and resources. That is very important to know because if you have a low end Intel PC or AMD PC, you want virus protection software that won’t bottleneck your computer.
Web Browser Choices
Free trials are great but let’s be honest, you’re not going to use them. You mind as well save yourself the time and trouble now by uninstalling your trial software immediately. Now that you have your security software taken care of, I would look into your internet browser. The majority of Window PC’s come with Internet Explorer right out of the box. Microsoft’s Internet Explorer has been a major snag in the past because of their lack of updates and support. Because of new players in the game such as Google and Mozilla, competition has forced Microsoft to improve their browser game by coming out with new versions almost every year. Web browsers cause a major security risk if not kept up-to-date, that is why it is so important to make sure you have the latest version available.
Internet Explorer 10 has been a wonderful treat, though because of the pain and suffering I experience when being stuck with IE6 and IE7 for years, I ventured onto other browsers such as Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox. Both browsers offer plugins or extensions which enhance certain functions and make the browser safer and fun to use while browsing the net. There are many extensions to choose from but the one I consider the most important is Ad-Blocker Plus. Ad-Blocker Plus not only blocks annoying ads from appearing on your screen but also protects your computer from malware, auto-installer scripts, and other malicious code that can be tucked inside ads. Having this kind of protection while browsing the internet will prevent you from falling victim to security threats against your computer.
I hope you found these tips useful. Of course there are much more tips out there that go into more depth but these are my important ones, especially for new computer users. For computer shoppers who are into gaming and want to build the ultimate gaming pc, keeping your system optimized as well as malware free is also very important. Be sure to watch what you download and make sure to keep your web browser and security software up-to-date, if not then don’t say I didn’t warn you! Happy computing!