Is It Just Me, Or Is My Favorite App Down?

Does this happen to you too?  I head over to a certain app, whether for business or just goofing off, and I can’t log on!  I try again and again, being very purposeful entering my password.  I shut down the application and restart it.  I shut down my phone/laptop/tablet and restart it, but the problem persists.  What is going on?!

In some cases, it could be the application itself which is having the issue.  Their servers are not infallible, despite what they might claim.

Application down - WordPress 1 cropped

But WordPress can go down.  And so can Facebook, Twitter, Quickbooks Online, and many other.  To check the status of your app when you are having issues head over to any of these sites:

  • Down Detector – I like the visuals of their graph.  Very easy to understand.  Down Detector tracks Facebook, Netflix, AT&T, Verizon, eBay, Twitter, and many others: http://downdetector.com/
  • Down Right Now – I like the visuals of this site as well.  They mostly track Social Media and email sites: http://downrightnow.com/
  • Outage Report – Not only does this site provide a graph of down times, but they have a map to show where the outages are occuring.  In addition to Social Media and entertainment sites, this site also tracks online gaming apps: http://outage.report/

If you are experiencing difficulties getting on to one of your favorite apps, remember to check one of the above sites. and record your problem too.

 

Chris Eddy of Geek For Hire, Inc. has been providing computer service to families and small businesses with Mac’s and PC’s for the past fourteen years. His company is highly rated by both the BBB (Better Business Bureau) and by Angie’s List. You can find more on our website.  Geek For Hire, Inc. provides onsite service (Tier 3) to the Denver / Boulder / Front Range area and remote service throughout North America.

We’ve been using Amazon Prime for the past few years.  We like the free 2-3 day shipping and the online streaming. I haven’t tried the Kindle lending library yet, but I’m tempted!   Prime is normally $99/year, but you can try it for 30 day for free by clicking on this link: Try Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial (Yes, we’ll get a small commission when you sign up.)

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iPhone 6 Touch Disease

Have you heard about the newest malady to affect the iPhone 6 and 6+?  It is something dubbed the “Touch Disease”, which affects the touchscreen of your iPhone.  You’ll notice a flickering grey bar and then your touchscreen will stop working.  This has primarily been impacting iPhones which are almost two years old.

This issue was reported by iFixIt on August 23rd in a blog post.  They did provide an image of the flickering grey bar at the top of the phone:

iphone 6 touch disease image from iFIXit

Gizmodo thinks the problem appears to be a part of the “Bendgate” issue:

“The iPhone 6 and 6 Plus flex more than other phones, which causes all of their guts flex too. The soldering beads connecting the chips to the logic board can’t handle the long-term repetitive stress of your back pocket”

Engadget reports that:

“Weirdly enough, replacing the screen isn’t a proper fix. The gray bar will creep onto a new screen even when it’s been swapped out because that’s not where the problem resides. It’s a problem with the Touch IC chips inside the phone, which separate from the logic board in a manner similar to the one that some claimed caused Microsoft’s Xbox 360 red-ring of death. They must be replaced for the problem to completely go away, and Apple’s in-store Geniuses are not equipped to do that kind of soldering work. Hence, the quandary. In a YouTube video cited by iFixit, repair specialist Louis Rossmann predicts that this “touch disease” malady could turn into a class action lawsuit if enough customers make a stink. “

MacRumors assures us that:

“The iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus are not affected by the same issue as Apple strengthened the body and changed the position of the Touch IC chips in those devices.”

Bottom line?  If your iPhone 6 or 6 Plus is still under warranty and you start to experience any of these issues, take it in right away for replacement. If it’s not, try not to store it in your back pocket or any place where it could flex easily.  Also, learn how to use Siri to open apps and to use its voice-to-text functionality. This may help tide you over until you can replace your phone or get the innards soldered properly.  Here’s a link to my blog on Top 10 Ways to use Siri.

And, I hope it goes without saying, but I’ll say it anyway!  Make sure you keep your iPhone backed up!

Chris Eddy of Geek For Hire, Inc. has been providing computer service to families and small businesses with Mac’s and PC’s for the past fourteen years. His company is highly rated by both the BBB (Better Business Bureau) and by Angie’s List. You can find more on our website.  Geek For Hire, Inc. provides onsite service (Tier 3) to the Denver / Boulder / Front Range area and remote service throughout North America.

We’ve been using Amazon Prime for the past few years.  We like the free 2-3 day shipping and the online streaming. I haven’t tried the Kindle lending library yet, but I’m tempted!   Prime is normally $99/year, but you can try it for 30 day for free by clicking on this link: Try Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial (Yes, we’ll get a small commission when you sign up.)

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Facebook and Ad Blocking

Facebook Advertisements:

Did you see the Press Release from Facebook last week? They say they have figured out how to show ads even to people who use Ad Blocking software.  Why?  (Sarcasm alert!)  Because Facebook knows better than you do, what is relevant to you and can show you ads that are appealing to you.  Here’s an excerpt from the Press Release:

“When they’re relevant and well-made, ads can be useful, helping us find new products and services and introducing us to new experiences — like an ad that shows you your favorite band is coming to town or an amazing airline deal to a tropical vacation. But because ads don’t always work this way, many people have started avoiding certain websites or apps, or using ad blocking software, to stop seeing bad ads. These have been the best options to date.

“We’ve designed our ad formats, ad performance and controls to address the underlying reasons people have turned to ad blocking software. When we asked people about why they used ad blocking software, the primary reason we heard was to stop annoying, disruptive ads. As we offer people more powerful controls, we’ll also begin showing ads on Facebook desktop for people who currently use ad blocking software.”

I’m not sure how they’ll accomplish this, or how long it will take before Ad Blocking software is upgraded, but for now it looks like we’ll be seeing ads on Facebook whether we want to or not.

Change Facebook Settings:

In the meantime, you can make a few changes to your Facebook Settings.  (Click on “Settings”, then “Ads”.)

The first thing you’ll want to do is change your preference for “Ads with my Social Actions” to “No One”.  Otherwise, your friends will see your actions associated with an ad like this:

FB Adblocking 4

Then, you’ll need to decide what to do about ads that are presented to you.  Do you want to see ads that are relevant to you, or do you just want to see all ads?  Essentially, those are your two choices as shown in the screen captures below:

FB Adblocking 3

FB Adblocking 2

I don’t know about you, but I’m hoping Ad Blocking software will get an upgrade very soon!

Chris Eddy of Geek For Hire, Inc. has been providing computer service to families and small businesses with Mac’s and PC’s for the past fourteen years. His company is highly rated by both the BBB (Better Business Bureau) and by Angie’s List. You can find more on our website.  Geek For Hire, Inc. provides onsite service (Tier 3) to the Denver / Boulder / Front Range area and remote service throughout North America.

We’ve been using Amazon Prime for the past few years.  We like the free 2-3 day shipping and the online streaming. I haven’t tried the Kindle lending library yet, but I’m tempted!   Prime is normally $99/year, but you can try it for 30 day for free by clicking on this link: Try Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial (Yes, we’ll get a small commission when you sign up.)

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Where To Turn, When You Don’t Know Where To Turn

I received some bad news yesterday about a friend who lost his battle with depression.  Whenever this happens, and it has happened too frequently in my lifetime, I wonder if there was something I could have done differently.  In most case I know though, that people tend to hide their demons behind a happy face.  They don’t want to burden their friends and family with their struggles.

That got me wondering:  Are there apps or other online resources that a person could go to anonymously for support and guidance?

I did a little bit of research, and the answer is Yes, and No.  Sure there are apps, but research is finding that those apps aren’t as helpful as actually talking to a trained counselor.

One app that is sponsored by the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is MY3.  MY3 lets you name three people you can contact in a crisis.  You set this up ahead of time, and contact them when needed.  These three people could be your therapist, your religious leader, a family member, a close friend, or even a neighbor.

My3 App Suicide Prevention

If you know you have suicidal tendencies, by all means, get into counseling now.  Many times the cost will be free, or on a sliding scale, so don’t let finances be a factor to not seeking help.  You can find a competent therapist by contacting your County or State Department of Human Services or by calling the Suicide Prevention Hotline – 800-273-8255.

If you are wondering what some of the warning signs are so that you might be able to help a friend or family member, check out the list here.   Some of the warning signs include:

  • Talking about wanting to die or to kill oneself.
  • Talking about feeling hopeless or having no reason to live.
  • Talking about feeling trapped or in unbearable pain.
  • Talking about being a burden to others.
  • Increasing the use of alcohol or drugs.
  • Acting anxious or agitated; behaving recklessly.

Our society has two demographics that are particularly susceptible to depression and suicide: Teens/Young Adults and Veterans.

Teens, especially, have many resources.  One message board that I found allows teens to “chat” with other teens about a variety of subjects from Gender Issues to Child Abuse to Eating Disorders, Suicide, and other topics.    Remember that if you do join a Message Board to head over to gmail first and create a new anonymous email address.

I’ve recently become aware that an average of 22 Veterans are killed by suicide every day.  Head to either one of these two websites for more info and assistance: Veteran Crisis Line or 22Kill.

Many of the websites I looked at this morning cite suicide as one of the leading causes of death in the US.  Keep your eyes and ears open.  If you see a friend showing any of the above signs, gently talk to them, and provide them with some of these resources.

Chris Eddy of Geek For Hire, Inc. has been providing computer service to families and small businesses with Mac’s and PC’s for the past fourteen years. His company is highly rated by both the BBB (Better Business Bureau) and by Angie’s List. You can find more on our website.  Geek For Hire, Inc. provides onsite service (Tier 3) to the Denver / Boulder / Front Range area and remote service throughout North America.

We’ve been using Amazon Prime for the past few years.  We like the free 2-3 day shipping and the online streaming. I haven’t tried the Kindle lending library yet, but I’m tempted!   Prime is normally $99/year, but you can try it for 30 day for free by clicking on this link: Try Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial (Yes, we’ll get a small commission when you sign up.)

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Olympics!

Will you be following the Olympics?  More and more people I know don’t have cable or satellite TV service anymore and are wondering how to keep up. Here are some suggestions:

2016 olympic logo

  • If you do still have a TV with an antenna, tune your set to NBC.  If you are near a large city that still broadcasts, you should be able to pick it up.  (Unless you’re in Colorado’s Foothills!)
  • Your second option is to view it via NBC’s live stream:  Note that I had to reload the page a few times before it would start playing.  I’m guessing their servers are busy!
  • You can also try Sling.com.  They have a one week free trial.  Remember to cancel before the free trial ends though, or get ready to pay $25 per month.
  • You can also download the Olympic app on your phone:  Note that it’s not very intuitive and takes a while to figure out how to navigate it.  If you’re just looking for results, though, this is a good place to start.You can also get information about the upcoming Olympics in PyeongChang, Tokyo, and Beijing.

Chris Eddy of Geek For Hire, Inc. has been providing computer service to families and small businesses with Mac’s and PC’s for the past fourteen years. His company is highly rated by both the BBB (Better Business Bureau) and by Angie’s List. You can find more on our website.  Geek For Hire, Inc. provides onsite service (Tier 3) to the Denver / Boulder / Front Range area and remote service throughout North America.

We’ve been using Amazon Prime for the past few years.  We like the free 2-3 day shipping and the online streaming. I haven’t tried the Kindle lending library yet, but I’m tempted!   Prime is normally $99/year, but you can try it for 30 day for free by clicking on this link: Try Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial (Yes, we’ll get a small commission when you sign up.)

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5 Good Things to Know about Pokemon Go

Have you downloaded the new Pokemon Go App yet?  Are you playing it?  It seems to be taking the nation by storm! You can find out all about it at the Pokemon website: http://www.pokemongo.com and you can download it from the iTunes store or, for the Android from Google Play.

If you are playing, make sure you appropriately manage your security settings. (In fact you should always be careful with how much you share from your phone with game developers.)

pokemon_go_logo

Pokemon sure has been getting some bad press though. Consider some of these stories:

  • Veteran Memorial overrun by Pokemon players
  • Pokemon Go players go mad.
  • Falling, tripping, and other mishaps.

The Good News:

But it’s not all bad news.  There have been several good things to come out of this new craze.  For example, people with anxiety, autism and Asperger’s are finding the Pokemon Go helps them get out and be more social.  According to this article in Inverse:

 “… the game is reportedly helping people overcome anxiety and other mental health issues, bringing an array of players together under one common passion. Such has been the case for a few parents of autistic children, who have been sharing stories about the game easing their children into incredible social interactions.”

 Pokemon has helped people find things:

According to one story, two women found a toddler: “Looking for new Pokemon Friday night, as they’d done before, the two stumbled upon a little girl who looked to be no older than 2, crossing a busy street by herself.”

 Another teen found a missing man who had recently died.

Businesses have realized they can use Pokemon to their advantage.  In fact, this Forbes article is full of ideas that businesses can use to lure in more Pokemon players – and potential buyers!

“Instead, take a cue from this local indie clothing store, which got into the spirit of the game by saying, “come get your PokéBalls and previously rocked threads. Gotta catch ‘em all in style!” That’s bound to leave a positive impression, get people talking and, with the overwhelming media attention this game is getting, potentially get your local business some exposure in the press.”

And players are accidentally getting more exercise!  One friend posted this on her Facebook a few days ago:

“I’ve walked 26 miles this week playing Pokemon GO. This is the weight loss plan I’ve been waiting for my entire life.”

In fact there’s even a guide for people who want to do interval training!

“Interval training … is a workout where you push yourself as hard as you can in short bursts, rest, then repeat. … This kind of stop and go activity is perfectly suited for the walk-and-stop play of Pokémon Go, and knowing that you get to play while you exercise can be a huge motivator. You’ll collect items at PokéStops (like eggs that only hatch if you walk or run), hatch said eggs with the massive number of steps you rack up, wear down rival gyms so you can take over, find wild pokémon to catch, and get fit all at the same time.”

Is it all just a mad scheme?  How long do you thing this craze will last?

Chris Eddy of Geek For Hire, Inc. has been providing computer service to families and small businesses with Mac’s and PC’s for the past fourteen years. His company is highly rated by both the BBB (Better Business Bureau) and by Angie’s List. You can find more on our website.  Geek For Hire, Inc. provides onsite service (Tier 3) to the Denver / Boulder / Front Range area and remote service throughout North America.

We’ve been using Amazon Prime for the past few years.  We like the free 2-3 day shipping and the online streaming. I haven’t tried the Kindle lending library yet, but I’m tempted!   Prime is normally $99/year, but you can try it for 30 day for free by clicking on this link: Try Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial (Yes, we’ll get a small commission when you sign up.)

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Facebook and Politics

Social Media:

I don’t know about you, but my Facebook is getting full of posts about politics.  Sometimes I agree with my Facebook friend, and sometimes I don’t.  Sometimes the posts are downright offensive!  I have a trick I use to minimize the number of times I see those offensive posts. It also helps minimize the times that those people can see my posts and start trolling.

Other People’s Posts:

I am assuming that you still want to be Facebook friends, you just want to see less of some of the posts that makes your blood boil!  If you don’t want to keep in touch with that person, by all means, press the “unfriend” button.  Otherwise, follow these steps:

Bring up the person’s Facebook page and click on the down arrow next to the “Friends” button.

Facebook acquaintence list 3

Then click on “Acquaintances” and make sure the “Get Notifications” option is unchecked.

Remember that Facebook uses algorithms to figure out what to show you.  If you check out that person’s page, it is more likely that their posts will show up on your feed. Facebook needs to be trained!

If something does show up on your feed that you don’t want to see, click the down arrow on the right side of the post and select “Hide Post”.

Facebook acquaintence list 5

You’ll get another pop-up after clicking on “Hide post” that looks like this.  Here you have another choice.  Do you want to see less from that particular person? Or do you want to see less from their source.  Click on your option and continue on your way through your news feed.

Facebook acquaintence list 6

Your Own Posts:

Sometimes it’s good to minimize who sees your posts as well.  Now, that will be easy for you to do.  When you post a news story or your own opinion that may be controversial to some, you can select who gets to see it.  Click on the down arrow to the left of the “Post” button and select who can see this post.  If you select “Friends except Acquaintances”, then all the people you’ve categorized as Acquaintances will not see that post.

Facebook acquaintence list 7

I hope these tips help you keep your sanity through this election season!

Chris Eddy of Geek For Hire, Inc. has been providing computer service to families and small businesses with Mac’s and PC’s for the past fourteen years. His company is highly rated by both the BBB (Better Business Bureau) and by Angie’s List. You can find more on our website.  Geek For Hire, Inc. provides onsite service (Tier 3) to the Denver / Boulder / Front Range area and remote service throughout North America.

We’ve been using Amazon Prime for the past few years.  We like the free 2-3 day shipping and the online streaming. I haven’t tried the Kindle lending library yet, but I’m tempted!   Prime is normally $99/year, but you can try it for 30 day for free by clicking on this link: Try Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial (Yes, we’ll get a small commission when you sign up.)

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Ransomware

Chris has seen several Ransom Ware infections in the past 18 months or so.  Ransomware is just about the worst of the malwares the “bad guys” have thought up. Essentially, once you get infected, the ransomware installs a nifty little program which encrypts all of your data.  Then, they’ll give you a pop-up letting you know that you have so much time to pay a ransom to receive the encryption key.

Here is a screen shot of one of the ransom notes Chris has seen.

HELP_DECRYPT - ransom ware - modified

I’ve asked Chris to tell you what ransomware looks like, what you can do if you’re infected, and how to protect yourself.

I’ve seen three actual instances of ransomware in the past few years.

The first instance occurred about two years ago at a customer site.  I found that their personal and business files were all encrypted.  Since they had a fairly recent backup of their data, the thought process was relatively quick: remove the old hard drive, install a new one, rebuild their server, and restore their data.  This took several hours to complete, but it was successful and very little data was lost.

The previous instance occurred last summer, to a customer I hadn’t served in many years.  I forget the nature of the problem which motivated the service call, but I soon discovered that their personal data was unreadable.  I turned off the computer and removed the hard drive, so that I could see what customer data was there without allowing the infection to proceed if it was still active. Turns out the customer already had a secondary infection which had been running for the past six months.  This created a huge volume of temporary files and greatly delayed my getting permission to access to their data. Somewhat fortunately, every personal folder which had been encrypted had had a text file and an HTML file added, which contained a document from the ransomware software.  The document indicated that the data was encrypted, and if you wanted to get it back you had pay a fee in BitCoin at one of 4 different IP addresses.  Note that only one IP address was responsive.  The ransom cost started at some amount, and would increase as time went on.  To prove that they were indeed the ones which encrypted the data, they offered to decrypt one file immediately and at no charge.  In talking with the customer, they identified the one file that was the most critical, and this one file was successfully and promptly decrypyted. Eventually, the customer decided to pay the ransom, which was about $700.  It it took a long time for the customer to get the BitCoin payment into a spendable account, and then the payment could not be given because none of those IP addresses were accessible.  We were ultimately declined access to provide the ransom payment because their servers were too busy to receive another connection.  Apparently their servers were being crushed with activity from their own success.

The most recent occurred a few months ago at a business I frequent.  The symptom to them was that the computers which run their business management application displayed an error message saying that the database was corrupt.  Since I was there at the time this happened, my recommendation was that they turn off all of their computers. Turns out they received an encrypting infection called “Locky”, because the customer files are encrypted and renamed to have a “.Locky” extension.  But there was no opportunity to pay a ransom to get the data back.  Another problem was that there was no backup of their data for several years.  The solution was to replace the old hard drive with a new drive in the server computer, reinstall and update the operating system, and coordinate with the manufacturer to reinstall the application and look for old data.  Fortunately, a copy of the database that was 6 months old was found; so there was a 6 month gap in time, but at least they had not lost 20 years of customer data.  Also, a good antivirus was installed on all of their computers, which they did not have before.  They did not understand that they needed a good antivirus installed.  This was actually a problem that was waiting to happen.  It could have been avoided if their usual “IT Guy” had taken the initiative to see what they did and did not have, rather than just doing a technical task they were called in to do.  They are hopefully in the process of getting a backup procedure, because hindsight showed that having a 6 month gap in customer data could have been avoided if their usual “IT Guy” had implemented backups of their data.

There are lessons to be learned from these experiences.

  1. Have a good antivirus on all of your technology.  Note that there is no antivirus on the planet that can protect you from all things all the time.
  2. Have your computer prepped by a competent IT person.
  3. Make backups of your data.  Backups never go out of style.  It can be to an external hard drive, or a USB thumb drive, or to a cloud based backup service like Dropbox.
  4. Know the completion status of that backup.  I’ve lost count of the number of customers who believe that they have been backing up for long time, but turns out that their data is actually old because the backup has not worked for years.

Chris Eddy of Geek For Hire, Inc. has been providing computer service to families and small businesses with Mac’s and PC’s for the past fourteen years. His company is highly rated by both the BBB (Better Business Bureau) and by Angie’s List. You can find more on our website.  Geek For Hire, Inc. provides onsite service (Tier 3) to the Denver / Boulder / Front Range area and remote service throughout North America.

We’ve been using Amazon Prime for the past few years.  We like the free 2-3 day shipping and the online streaming. I haven’t tried the Kindle lending library yet, but I’m tempted!   Prime is normally $99/year, but you can try it for 30 day for free by clicking on this link: Try Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial (Yes, we’ll get a small commission when you sign up.)

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Wearables

I ambled down the rabbit hole and stumbled across this old PC Magazine article from 2008.  In the article, they look at futuristic devices introduced in movies and show how those ideas have come to fruition in 2008.

  • There’s the transformer cell phone.  Watch the Youtube here.
  • There’s the hoverboard and another Youtube.
  • And there’s this poor substitute for the universal translator/ babel fish and its cringe-worthy video.

The only gadget from the movies that has really taken off is the wrist watch communicator.  In just the past few years watches that alert you to phone calls and texts, track your steps and heart rate, and allow you to search the Internet, have evolved into wearables worth the investment.

Here’s my Fitbit  telling me that Chris is calling:

20160705 fitbit

Aside from the FitBit and the Apple Watch, other wearable gadgets available today include:

Thync: The first wearable for relaxation and energy  The Thync works by signaling nerves on the head and neck to act on the brain’s adrenaline system. These nerves then activate your body’s natural state of Energy or Calm.

Then there are Blacksocks Plus. These are truly wearables with a twist!  From their website:

Imagine your phone could communicate with your socks. Your phone would know:

    • which socks belong together,and could help sort them out,
    • how often you have washed your socks,
    • when your socks were produced,
    • when you ordered your socks and
    • when your socks were dispatched.

Your iPhone can also tell you if your black socks are no longer properly black and help you buy new socks.

If only they could tell you if it was the washer or dryer that stole one of your socks!

Coming out later this year are Jewelbots.  This adorable bracelet is aimed at teaching young girls to code.  The gender gap among boys and girls in science and engineering classes continues to widen, and the number of technical jobs continue to increase.  Getting our girls interested in the sciences at a young age, and keeping their interest through high school and college is so important!  Jewelbots is a just one step on this path.  For more info on this issue, check out Girls Who Code.

 

Chris Eddy of Geek For Hire, Inc. has been providing computer service to families and small businesses with Mac’s and PC’s for the past fourteen years. His company is highly rated by both the BBB (Better Business Bureau) and by Angie’s List. You can find more on our website.  Geek For Hire, Inc. provides onsite service (Tier 3) to the Denver / Boulder / Front Range area and remote service throughout North America.

We’ve been using Amazon Prime for the past few years.  We like the free 2-3 day shipping and the online streaming. I haven’t tried the Kindle lending library yet, but I’m tempted!   Prime is normally $99/year, but you can try it for 30 day for free by clicking on this link: Try Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial (Yes, we’ll get a small commission when you sign up.)

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How Often Should You Get Your Mac or PC Tuned Up?

I recently brought my sewing machine in to get fixed.  It’s been sewing unevenly for the past several years, but I’ve just been living with it.  I’ve been living with it partly because it “wasn’t that bad” and partly because I really didn’t know where to take it.  Well, I finally realized how bad it was and asked around for a recommendation of where to take it.  I made an appointment and brought it in.  The nice woman behind the counter asked me how long it had been since my sewing machine had had a tune-up.  I told her it had been at least ten years.  She laughed (in a nice way) and told me they recommend a tune-up at least once a year.

I can understand that.  In fact, I can solidly get behind that!

How many times do you wait and wait?  How often have you thought “It’s not so bad.  I can wait two minutes for my internet page to load.” or “It’s normal for my machine to shut down on its own, isn’t it?”

We recommend that our customers get an annual tuneup on their machines – for both PCs and Mac’s.  Why?  When I asked my friend Karen why she did, she answered: “In one word?  Stress reduction.”

A few years ago, Karen got a nasty virus.  Chris came out and cleaned it all up and she was pretty impressed.  When it was time for her to get  a new machine, she asked Chris for help in the selection process.  I see her frequently and at least once a month she tells me how thrilled she is with her new machine.  When she got a postcard from us reminding her that a year had already gone by, she called right away for her appointment.  Chris checked it all out, deleted some unnecessary files that were gunking up the works, scanned for any viruses, and updated her new anti-virus, and she was good to go!

So, here is some of what happens during a tuneup:

  1. Chris does a scan to make sure there aren’t any viruses.
  2. He’ll do a general clean up to make the whole machine snappier.
  3. If you don’t have an anti-virus, he’ll add one.  If you do, he’ll make sure it’s up to date and accepting automatic updates.
  4. Chris will make sure your operating system is updated with all the necessary file uploads.
  5. He’ll answer any of your questions and provide training if you need that.

So now I know.  My car needs a tune-up every 3-5000 miles.  My sewing machine needs a tune-up every year.  And now you know that your computer needs a tune-up every year too!

Chris Eddy of Geek For Hire, Inc. has been providing computer service to families and small businesses with Mac’s and PC’s for the past fourteen years. His company is highly rated by both the BBB (Better Business Bureau) and by Angie’s List. You can find more on our website.  Geek For Hire, Inc. provides onsite service (Tier 3) to the Denver / Boulder / Front Range area and remote service throughout North America.

We’ve been using Amazon Prime for the past few years.  We like the free 2-3 day shipping and the online streaming. I haven’t tried the Kindle lending library yet, but I’m tempted!   Prime is normally $99/year, but you can try it for 30 day for free by clicking on this link: Try Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial (Yes, we’ll get a small commission when you sign up.)