Infomercials that have been written in regard to Windows 10 and over computer problems

Windows 10 update series 4

Last time we talked about the Start Menu highlighting the pros and cons. This month I wanted to talk about the best way to operate in Windows 10.

The fundamentals about how to work on Windows 10 are the same as working on Windows XP. You have a desktop and your files. Some people have a messy desktop with everything they need to hand. Personally I like to work with a tidy desktop with the current active jobs on it. Desktop Icons work the same as they always do. Double clicks to open.

The File Manager is what we use to access your files. We used to call this Explorer. To access it you need to single click on the little file icon on the taskbar. Once you click on it and the window opens you will be pleasantly surprised it works the same way it always has. There is a list under “This PC” where you will find “Desktop” “Documents” “Downloads” “Music” and “Pictures”. Windows will automatically attempt to save your files in these locations it helps to keep everything together and away from the system files.

As you can see we have a very similar layout as every other version of windows the only difference is that Windows 10 will try its best to get you to work in these areas. It’s a good thing to only work in this way as you are less likely to misplace your documents when it comes to changing your computer or recovering your information if it breaks.

I hope pointing out these parts of Windows 10 helps you to see how similar it is to the previous versions of Windows. Next month I will show you how the settings have changed in Windows 10. I will focus on where to add printers and how to remove programs as this will be the most common use of the settings.

Computer Buying Guide

Shopping for a new laptop or desktop can be a confusing business; it is leading most people to purchase the wrong products and spending a lot more money than needed. This job gets even more complicated when you have specific requirements such as photo editing or video editing. In this article, I’m going to talk about three different types of users hopefully you will identify which type of user you are to give an idea on the computer to purchase.

When purchasing a computer for a customer, I first need to ascertain what type of computer user are they? Normally I only need to ask 3 questions to ascertain this, “What do you use the computer for?” “Do you want a large screen or small one?” “What is your budget?”

Typical User

A typical user generally uses their computer to surf the Internet and open emails they also do the odd bit of printing, such as plane tickets and insurance documents. They want a medium size laptop, not too heavy. They have a budget somewhere between £300 and £600

Typical users and easiest to cater for they can work on any computer. There is no need to spend more than £500 it would almost be a waste of money. Look for something with similar specs to this.

Processor: Intel Pentium or Intel I3

RAM: 4GB or 8GB DDR4 (DDR3 is still ok)

Storage: No need to be bigger than 500GB No need for SSD storage

Computers with similar spec should last at least 4 years if not longer.

Specialist user

A specialist user generally has a niche that they work in such as photography or they have a hobby which requires special software to be installed, also using it for the same reasons as the Typical User. Essentially if you need to open multiple different programs at once such as word processing, the Internet, music, and database then you also fit into this category. Normally a larger laptop with a good-sized screen, the budget would be anything up to £800

Specialist users can be difficult to cater for what we always advise not spending more than the top end of the budget. Depending on the niche depend on what they need is a general overview.

Processor: Intel I5

Rob: 8GB to 16 GB DDR4

Storage: 1tb HD or 250GB SSD with 1tb second drive (desktop) 500gb SSD (laptop)

Computers with similar spec should last at least 4 years if not longer.

Advanced user

An advanced user is typically the person that uses their computer to play games or has a niche that they work in which requires high processing power. Normally they want a desktop and are not bothered by the size if they want a laptop they wanted to be really big. They typically have a budget between £700 and £1500

Advanced users have a lot of decisions to make so I would always recommend speaking to us or having us build something special.

Processor: I7

RAM: 16GB or 32GB DDR4

Storage: 500GB SSD storage + 1tb HD

Graphics card: This is the price point you can spend between £150 to £800 on a card

Computers with similar spec should last at least 2 years if not longer.


I hope this short Guide is helpful and if you are still lost in a sea of numbers we are always here to help. Just give us your budget we will go out get you a new computer and set it up for you. If you want a high machine for yourself or as a present we can custom build with a specific target in mind.

Prevention and management of malware

Malware is simply short for ‘malicious software’. Malware is a type of computer program that is made for the sole purpose of infecting and causing harm to computers. Malware comes in various forms and therefore affects your machine in many different ways.

Types of Malware

There are many different types of Malware and all of them affect your machine or devices in different ways.

  • Viruses
  • Spyware
  • Adware
  • Trojans
  • Worms
  • Rootkits
  • Keyloggers
  • Backdoors
  • Rogue Security Software
  • Browser Hijackers
  • Ransomware

How does Malware get on your machine?

Just as extensive as the list of Malware, is the amount of ways Malware can affect your machine and devices. Malware can enter your machine/devices in many ways.

  • Attached in emails-
  • Infected Removable Media-
  • Infected or hacked websites-
  • Hidden in other software-

What can I do to prevent getting Malware on my machine?

The most obvious way of preventing Malware on your machine is installing a good antivirus product. Being protected with strong security software such as ESET antivirus is a must in today’s IT environments. There is a famous quote that says “the only problem with free antivirus is that it cost too much”. With our 15+ years of experience, we believe this is extremely true. If you think about it, you realise what the difference between a free product and a paid for one is. How would a free product be updated daily? How would it be developed to cover a wider variety of threats? In short, it would not and with antivirus, you get what you pay for. We have been working with ESET for 10 years and are confident that this is the only antivirus product for you.

Another way of preventing Malware is ensuring any available updates to your machine are installed. Updates are a must for all programs and operating systems. Updates are a must for all programs and operating systems. Windows updates get turned off all the time why is this? Well, there are a lot of reasons, from people not wanting to have longer load times to people believing that they do not need the updates. So why are updates important? Let’s say that a flaw has been found in Windows 10 and that flaw lets people access all your data over the internet. Imagine if this were to be posted on the internet and every black hat hacker or kid in his bedroom could then access your data. Microsoft would create a patch for the flaw and send out the patch in an update to everybody immediately. If you have your updates turned off little, Jimmy down the road will be reading all your confidential documents. This is a bit extreme but it is possible so always install any available updates when you can.

Backing up is a must for all of us, not only for big corporate companies but also for smaller business-es and home users. I know from first-hand experience all hard drives fail in the end and if you don’t want to spend hundreds/ thousands of pounds to get your data retrieved forensically, you will need a solid plan with plenty of redundancy. Home users should have a backup on a portable hard drive as well as a cloud-based backup as redundancy. For a business, there is more to think about making a disaster recovery plan and testing it is a must!

In Summary

You need to spread awareness within your peer groups and organisations of what Malware is and how to protect against it. The more you do to prevent Malware the less you will get coming in. You need to ensure you are: protected with a good antivirus product, installing all necessary updates and are backing up your data regularly.

Windows 10 update series 3

In the last article, we talked about my favorite feature in Windows 10 Cortana. Today I’d like to talk about the start menu.

From Windows 95 all the way up to Windows 7 the start menu was laid out in a very similar way but then Windows 8 came along. Windows 8 was originally released featuring its new almost tablet-like view, however, we have become so accustomed to the way that we use Windows that nobody liked it including me. With Windows 10 Microsoft has attempted to take the best parts of Windows 8 and incorporate them into a version of Windows that works the way we’ve been using them to working. They’ve achieved this by adding a new section to the start menu.

The new section in the start menu is on the right-hand side and incorporates the large pain like icons. People that find visual prompts helpful may well like this feature has it is easy to use, you simply drag and drop the program you want to use in the section you want it. For me, however, I find it too clunky and my analytic brain does not compute and I’ll always prefer a small icon and list. Luckily for me just next to this section is a full list of all the programs installed on the computer you can simply scroll up and down and the laid out is in alphabetical order.

On the left-hand side of the start menu is where you’ll find the power button to turn the computer off, settings, pictures, and documents. As you can see the start menu is similar but fundamentally different, there are also extra sections which can add a lot of confusion. As I always say to my customers ignore the other pretty colorful squares and just use the start button to turn the computer off and access your files.

I hope you find the explanation of the start menu helpful for the next article I want to try and explain the most efficient way to go about your daily business from writing letters checking emails to saving opening files.

Windows 10 Update Series 2

In the last article, we talked about some fundamental differences between Windows 7 and Windows 10. Today I’m going to talk about my favorite feature in Windows 10.

By far my favorite feature and what I find is the most useful aspect of Windows 10 is Cortana when you first install Windows 10 a little assistant starts talking to you, it introduces itself as Cortana this is Windows 10’s inbuilt artificial intelligence (AI). AI is what everybody’s talking about at the moment you probably would have heard the names, Siri and Alexa, a lot, fundamentally they the same type of AI as Cortana.

Now that we’ve established that Cortana is a type of AI similar to Alexa and Siri how does that make Cortana my favorite feature in Windows 10, is it because it’s a lovely female voice? Or is there more to it? Well to start with I don’t talk to Cortana I use her typing function, instead of saying the words “Cortana can you find me this file” I simply type in the box the name of the file I’m looking for. Quicker than lightning Cortana finds the file and shows it to me ready to open if Cortana cannot find me the file she tries her best to find something similar.

Let me give you an example in 2015 I created a spreadsheet called accounts. Pretend I am having a tax audit and I need all my account spreadsheets but I cannot find the one from 2015. So, I click on Cortana and I type “accounts 2015”. Lo and behold Cortana finds the files I’m looking for. Honestly, I use this feature in Windows 10 daily. Not only do I use it to open and find files I also use it to open programs. Every morning when I turn on my computer first thing I do is click on Cortana and type “ou” Cortana remembers that when I type “ou” I am probably going to finish by typing the whole word outlook so she puts it at the top of the list because this is one woman knows what I really want.

Not only can Cortana find files you may have lost on your computer but she can also answer questions. I must admit I don’t use this function very often. But it’s nice to know it’s there. All of a sudden, I realized I’d been talking about artificial intelligence and some pretend lady called Cortana. If we think back 30 years and somebody wrote an article like this it wouldn’t be a factual article it would be complete fantasy. I’ve got to admit that is part of the reason Cortana is my favorite feature.