Mastering even just a few computer tips and tricks can definitely increase one’s efficiency. Knowing that there are tons of computer tips and tricks out there, we rounded up ten of the most important ones you need to know.
Tip 1: Have a simple yet reliable backup system
The only time you will realize just how important backing up files is when you suddenly or accidentally lost everything.
Backing up your computer is simple. The key is to get a backup drive that matches the size of the computer you are backing up. Simply put, a 500GB drive ultimately requires a 500GB backup drive.
However, if you are just keen on backing up just a few essential files from your computer, an external hard drive of at least 1 TB should provide you enough space for everything you need a second copy of including software programs.
Tip 2: Learn the useful keyboard shortcut tricks
As if tasks cannot be done any faster on a computer, there are useful keyboard shortcut tricks that cut time further in half.
If you want to type www.google.com without actually entering ‘www’ and ‘.com’ on your browser, simply type ‘google’ on the address bar and press Ctrl + Enter. If you need to open a new tab in your browser, there’s Ctrl + T to the rescue. If you want to remove words instead of just characters one by own, press Ctrl + Backspace. Although there is the mouse to help you, learning a few keyboard shortcuts sure is wise.
Tip 3: Keep your computer virus-free
Unless you are using a Mac computer, viruses are the least of your worries. However, for Windows users, learning the differences between viruses and other attacks on a computer is essential to know the type of anti-virus you should invest on.
There are free antivirus software that you can install on your Windows computer such as Avast and Bitdefender. You may opt for the paid ones if you think you need a more robust protection. Remember: the best way to avoid viruses on your computer is to never install suspicious programs or clicking on dubious links.
Tip 4: Put a password on your Wi-Fi
Aside from slowing down your internet speed, not putting a password on your Wi-Fi can cause several security issues.
One, a person can observe all the data sent and received by your computer. They can see web pages you request, the types of links you click on, type of content you request, and so on.
Two, a person can download illegal contents with the IP address being traced to your network.
Third, your computer being hacked is a might possibility.
When it comes to protecting your Wi-Fi with a password, make it a strong one, and alphanumeric passwords are always the best. Also, make sure that you have the recent updates and patches on your Wi-Fi network as this decreases security risks and vulnerabilities. Wi-Fi hacking is a common occurrence you can avoid simply by having a password and a secure and updated architecture.
Tip 5: Make your computer accessible anywhere
Although owning a laptop provides a host of convenience in itself, what will you do if you accidentally left something important in your computer at home? Migrating all, or even just some of your important files, in the cloud can be very helpful during instances like these.
Additionally, storing files securely in the cloud can provide different benefits as well. You can access your files anytime you want, you save yourself from buying expensive additional and/or external hard drives, and it allows you to collaborate better with other people. Dropbox, an example of a cloud-based storage service, allows you to access your computer anywhere remotely, securely and conveniently.
Tip 6: Keep your computer well-maintained
Back in the old days, keeping up with the maintenance of your computer is like maintaining a car. However, thanks to improved Windows and Mac maintenance tasks that work quietly in the background, you don’t need to run maintenance tasks manually. Just make sure to confirm the schedule of your computer’s security updates to keep it automated.
Tip 7: Make it easy to find your computer should it get lost
Lost computers are commonplace these days, hence, safeguarding your unit is essential before it’s too late.
For Windows and Mac users, there are a good number of third party software programs that you can run on your PC to track it. While there are yet to be remote tracking programs that can work similar to programs for smart phones and tablet computers, safe guarding your computer nonetheless is worth your time.
Tip 8: Always keep your information secure
Although it provides us a variety of conveniences, living in this technologically-shaped world has not made the world we live in safer. This is why it is crucial to keep your computers and most of all, your information, safe at all times.
Always use strong passwords. Use alphanumeric passwords. Make it a tough one to crack to increase your protection against fraudulent online activities.
Be wary of what you share on social media. Social media has definitely made the world a smaller place. Despite our connections, never reveal personal information such as your full name, addresses, bank details, and other personal information publicly.
Never use open Wi-Fi networks. Except for Wi-Fi networks that provide passwords, you’ll be in hot water if you rely solely on public Wi-Fi connections to access the web.
Tip 9: Use a password manager
Having stressed the important of having strong passwords, creating one and keeping a tab on each might be a challenge. As a solution, use a password manager.
Unless you’d rather write everything down on a piece of paper, a password manager keeps your usernames safe and creates a unique and strong password for each.
Check out PC Mag’s recommended password managers.
Tip 10: Always have a clean and optimized system
Search ‘cleaning and optimizing programs’ on Google and you will see tons of software programs available for you to download and use.
Having such a software program on your computer allows you to clean junk files, optimize your system, remove spyware, fix your registry, fix vulnerabilities, disable or remove programs and services that are slowing down your computer, and tons more.
Aside from these ten, there are also cleaning tips and tricks you need to be aware of to keep your computer clean and running smoothly without interruptions. The cleaning tips below apply to your unit’s components and peripherals:
• Never apply cleaning solutions directly on any computer component. Spray cleaning solution on a cotton cloth, cotton swabs or foam swabs before applying on the component, such as CD drives, headphones, LCD, monitor, mouse, etc.
• Use a vacuum when picking up dirt, hair or dust around your desktop or laptop, never inside as it can generate static electricity. Likewise, before doing any cleaning on your computer, turn it off first.
• When cleaning your keyboard, use compressed air contained in a can with a long nozzle. Aim the nozzle in between the keys and blow away all dust and dirt. Wise to do this at least once a month, but on a daily basis, do not forget to disinfect keyboard with cleaning solution and a cloth. Using compressed air is also ideal for cleaning the motherboard.
Ultimately, this list of 10 computer tips and tricks can be exhausted further. There are tips and tricks that have been working ever since it was conceived, and new ones waiting to be discovered as we speak. After all, if there is one way to make your computer more and more efficient, it is these tips and tricks that you will learn along the way and from others as well.