New Computer Guide

Initial Setup

If you have purchased a desktop or laptop from Hopedale Technologies, we will typically make sure your computer is setup and updated to the latest Windows Operating System patches.  This will save you a lot of time when you first turn on your computer.

After receiving your new desktop or laptop computer, you will need to figure out a location to setup your device.  With laptops, you have a lot of flexibility (it is a portable by  nature), but you still will need to choose appropriate locations to use your laptop.  Read on to learn more.  

 

Desktop Setup

Power

  • Connect the power cord to the rear of your tower and plug this into a quality surge protector

Monitor

  • There are three or four types of monitor connections that you may have, including:
    • VGA
    • DVI
    • HDMI
    • Display Port
  • You may find that your computer has multiple monitor connections, in different areas of your tower.  This may indicate that you can plug in more than one monitor, but more importantly, it indicates that you may have a graphics card.  Often times, only one set of monitor ports can be used.  

Location

  • Setup your desktop computer in an area that will get adequate ventilation, in a room that doesn’t have large temperature fluctuations.  It is best to avoid rooms that your pets may enjoy as they will tend to bump into things easily.  Further, pet hair will get sucked into the desktop tower, which will also restrict air flow to the sensitive components.
 
 
 
 

Laptop Setup

Video for Laptop Setup

  • Power
  • Docking Station 
 
 
 

Network Setup

  • Wired versus Wireless
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Printer Setup

  • Wired versus Wireless
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Laptop Considerations

Handling and Care

  • Handling

  • Ventilation

  • Temperature

  • Cleaning
 
 

Battery Life

  • To maximize the life of the battery, use the battery until the charge is depleted, recharge the battery completely. 

 
 
 

Function Keys

  • Function Keys on a laptop may require hitting a  function (Fn) button or function lock button on your keyboard first.

  • Often times, function keys can control your WIFI antenna or the touchpad  mouse on your laptop. 

 
 
 

Important Information

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Security : Antivirus

  • Antivirus

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Security : Cloud Backup

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Security : Strong Passwords

  • Using the same password on all your devices is very risky.  Often times, because your email address is used as a username for an account, if hackers can get one password, they will be able to gain access to other sites by using the same email/password combination.  And if you save your credit card with your account, now a hacker can place orders on your behalf.  

  • Password managers can help you organize your accounts and to ensure you are using unique passwords across all of your accounts.  Check out our article about Password Managers: Passwords – Hopedale Technologies
  • Using multifactor  authentication (MFA) will help ensure that the correct person is logging into your account, but it isn’t fool proof.  
    https://www.hopedaletech.com/2-factor-authentication/
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Internet Safety

  • Function Keys on a laptop may require hitting a  function (Fn) button or function lock button on your keyboard first.

  • Often times, function keys can control your WIFI antenna or the touchpad  mouse on your laptop. 

  • To maximize the life of the battery, use the battery until the charge is depleted, recharge the battery completely. 

 
 
 

Location

Merge into above area … Choose your location carefully, some rooms are busier than others, have more dust and present more opportunity to bump into the components or to step on wires. 

Just like your house and car, your computer will need a periodic cleaning from time to time.  You may keep your computer in a clean and tidy room, but there are internal fans that are running to keep your computer components cool that bring in all sorts of dust and debris.  We often find food crumbs, dust bunnies and pet hair caked inside.  Further, if you are using your computer in a factory, you will get an oily build up as well.  This debris and build up will clog up the air flow inside your computer, increasing heat and accelerating wear on your sensitive computer components.  

We do not recommend opening up computers and laptops.  For a small fee, we can clean the debris from inside your computer.  Or we can do a full tune up on your computer to check for malware, spyware or viruses, unneeded programs or to check for ways to improve performance.  
 
 

Tips and Tricks

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Maintenance and Troubleshooting

Eventually, something will happen that will leave you stumped.  Although we are always here to help you, please review the following sections for things you can (and shouldn’t) try on your own.  You can also check out our troubleshooting page for more tips and tricks to diagnose system issues.

 

What you can do

If your computer seems to be sluggish, there are several things you can do to improve the performance.

  • Try to reboot, sometimes the simplest solution will fix all problems.
  • Uninstall programs that you don’t need.  Use the Add or Remove Programs functionality built into Windows to do this.  Never delete the program files directly.
  • Check the start-up applications to see what is running.  Do you need to have all of these programs all the time?
  • Check the number of Browser windows that you have open and the extensions that you may have active.
  • Run a Malware or Antivirus Scan
 
 

What you shouldn't do

  • Don’t open your computer to spray compressed air into your computer.  Although we recommend cleaning your computers (desktop and laptop) annually, we do not recommend doing this on your own.  Your computer has sensitive and fragile components that require special handling.  [LINK TO PC CLEAN]
  • Leave RAM and SSD Upgrades to the professionals. 
  • Don’t make changes to your system registry.  This can be very dangerous if you don’t know what you’re doing.  
  • Don’t delete programs by deleting the application files.  Use Add/Remove Programs instead.
  • Don’t disable your antivirus program or let the subscription lapse.
 
 
 
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