I’ve got Anti-Virus Software, so why have I still got a Virus?

WCS iBlog

Information, Hints & Comment on the IT World

I’ve got Anti-Virus Software, so why have I still got a Virus?

 

As a Computer Repairer, I see a lot of clients with virus problems. In the vast majority of cases they have done nothing wrong, with one exception, they put their trust in something free of charge.

Free software is great, in a few cases it’s better than commercial software, but i’m not aware of any free Anti-virus (AV) software that’s better than it’s commercial equivalents, especially when you look at cutting-edge AV products such as Norton Security 2.0.

Free AV is absolutely better than nothing at all, but has been proven in recent tests to miss anything up to 50% of potential infections. This leaves your computer potentially open to attack every time you read an email, visit a website or run a downloaded programme.

 

Potential problem’s that can occur if you get infected are pop-up’s or ad’s appearing on-screen, computer slow-down, the inability to access to the internet or your whole computer crashing, leaving you unable to get back into Windows!

Therefore you have to weigh up whether the potential risks of the above, especially if you use a computer for vital business or personal use, outweigh the comparatively minimal cost of a commercial AV product. However, not all commercial products are equal, please contact us for advice on products if required.

Another issue to be aware of is Commercial AV software, where the annual paid subscription has been allowed to lapse. Very recently I saw a client’s PC with over 30, yes 30, spyware, adware and virus infections. They had a major AV product installed, but hadn’t renewed it in several months. The amount of damage that had been caused to the computer was so severe, that it had to be wiped clean, costing the customer more than the £30/year renewal!

So to sum-up, if your using AVG Free, Microsoft Security Essentials or any other Free-AV product, buyer beware!

 

If you’d like to discuss Anti-virus, give us a call

on 01582 831 533 today and we’ll help you find a solution FAST!

 

For all your Anti-virus needs

WCS iBlog – Why can’t I get Wi-Fi throughout my Home or Office?

WCS iBlog

Information, Hints & Comment on the IT World

Why can’t I get Wi-Fi throughout my Home or Office?

 

Fuming. Your Fuming. You’ve just signed a £30+ / month contract plus installation for BT Infinity or Cable to get ultra-fast broadband speed’s to your house. It work’s brilliantly, but as soon as you move your laptop or phone more than one room away from the router, you get no signal at all, what’s gone wrong?

Unfortunately, nothing. Wi-Fi (or Wireless) technology has a number of caveats that most Internet providers don’t make customers aware of until it’s too late. Top of the list is that, despite you being provided with only one Wireless Point (WAP) to connect too, there is no guarantee that this one point will cover your entire house.

You may own a 20 bedroom mansion, a 2 room office in a block or a 2 up, 2 down mid-terrace…whatever the size of house, you may find that one WAP is not enough (although to be fair, the more rooms / larger the size, the more chance of needing extra WAP’s is).

Size of property is not the only consideration. The Wi-Fi signal does travels through floors and walls surprisingly well, but as soon as it hits metal (inc. particles in breeze-blocks) or hard stone walls or floors, all bet’s are off and the signal can drop off substantially. I’ve seen 3 floor houses where one WAP is enough and equally, some in which they cannot get a signal in the very next room.

Another major consideration is the WAP (Router) provided by your ISP. Not all router’s are created equal and often the one’s provided ‘free’ are not as great when it comes to Wi-Fi coverage compared to other products available.

So what can I do?

You need a Wireless survey. This will determine exactly how far the Wi-Fi signal you have is reaching and therefore whether the router need’s adjusting or you require a replacement Router and/or additional WAP(s).

If the materials used in constructing your home / office may prevent additional WAP’s from working correcting – the survey should also determine this. That being the case other technologies can be employed, such as Powerline, which sends the networking signal over the power cables of the house, providing localised Wi-Fi in key areas, rather than full coverage, which is a great ‘second-best’ option.

Once it’s determined what equipment you need, it’s installed and adjusted to your local environment need’s, you will have a far more robust and usable Wi-Fi network.

 

If you’d like to discuss Wireless, give us a call

on 01582 831 533 today and we’ll help you find a solution FAST!

 

For all your Wifi Herts needs

WCS iBlog – Should you buy a Laptop or Tablet?

WCS iBlog

Information, Hints & Comment on the IT World

Should you buy a Laptop or Tablet?

 

Over the past few year’s, the Tablet has risen Phoenix-like, out of the ashes of the dying Netbook market. Manufacturers clearly realised there was an appetite for a device that wasn’t as bulky as a laptop, but also had the ability to do far more than the average poorly spec’d netbook.

But is a Tablet as good as a Laptop, or even a Netbook? It basically boils down to what you need it to do. If all you need a device to do is surf the Internet, send a few emails and play the odd game, then a Tablet is perfect. Far easier to maintain and use than the average Laptop, with substantial cost savings possible dependent on model.

On the other hand if you need a device to sit in front of all day long and type letters or fill-in spreadsheets regularly, then a Tablet is not the device for you. Even on a large 12″+ Tablet, the software is just not designed for this kind of intensive use and by the time you’ve bought an external keyboard (and you will) any savings in terms of weight, space or money may become negligible. So buyer beware!

If you do decide a Tablet’s for you, their are numerous types for sale by many different manufacturer’s – even Tesco! They tend to fall into 3 categories:

Apple iPad, this is generally seen as the most complete Tablet, with the best software and regular updates adding new features and software possibilities. As it uses the same basic operating system as an iPhone, if you use one, you can use the other. Also the annual IOS updates often work on devices 3/4/5 years old. The major downside is the price, especially if you go for a large storage model.

Android, Google’s free operating system, is the most common OS on just about every non-Microsoft or Apple tablet. It does the vast majority of things and has the same or similar programmes an iPad does, but often at 2/3 the cost or less. The major downside is that because they are all made by different manufacturer’s, no two Android tablets are the same.

This can cause a problem in terms of software and means that the Tablet you buy today, may not be upgradeable to the latest Android software version in 6 months time. This is as true of Android Phones as Tablets and means that using one Android device, doesn’t necessarily mean you can use another with ease.

Surface‘ is the final main variety. It is Microsoft’s Tablet Running Windows RT / 8. In theory, if you use a Windows 8 Computer, these devices should be very straight-forward and familiar to you. The downside is that, dependent on which model you buy, they can be very limited in terms of software availability, can be as problematic as their Windows 8 Laptop brethren and are not as cheap as Android devices.

The best way to judge which one is for you, is to test drive all three and see which feel’s right for you, bearing in mind the above – especially whether the device can do what you want it too.

 

If you’d like to discuss Tablets or Laptops, give us a call

on 01582 831 533 today and we’ll help you find a solution FAST!

 

For all your Tablet or Laptop Herts needs

WCS iBlog – Should your next PC be a Mac?

WCS iBlog

Information, Hints & Comment on the IT World

Should your next PC be a Mac?

 

You need a new Computer. You pop along to your local Computer retailer to take a look at what’s available and whilst browsing the shelves, the Apple display catches your eye and you have second thoughts about buying another PC.

They ‘look great’, ‘next door’s got one’, ‘they’re idiot-proof’…these are all just some of the reason’s i’ve heard as to why people buy a Mac instead of a PC.

But make no mistake, they are not cheap. The cheapest Mac Laptop is around £900, with the ‘all-in-one’ iMac starting at a similar price. So they are not for the faint-of-heart, let alone wallet!

…But…

There is an alternative. The Mac Mini.

 

The little-known bargain of the Mac world, the Mac-Mini has almost identical internals to the equivalent iMac, but, it starts at £399, which, for Apple, is amazing value! You will need to provide your own keyboard, mouse and monitor, but if your upgrading from a PC, chances are you have these lying around already! So if you fancy a Mac, this is a great, no-compromise, introduction to the world of Apple computing.

I won’t go over the old Mac ‘V’ PC arguments, but if you use a computer for Email, Internet, Word Processing, Spreadsheets, storing Music and Pictures and the odd game (which is what approx. 99% of average home use is) then there is no disadvantage to using a Mac, in-fact there are several advantages.

But, don’t let the hype get in the way of the truth. If you have used a PC all your life, the layout and operation of a Mac is different to a PC and there will be a certain level of learning-curve required, but with a minimum of effort, you will be surprised at the ease-of-use, and software integration which the average PC can only dream of. If you already use an iPad and / or an iPhone, the integration and ease of use only increases.

If you’d like to discuss migrating to Mac, then please call us for advice, today, on 01582 831 533.

 

if you have a problem with an Apple Mac, give us a call

on 01582 831 533 today and we’ll help you find a solution FAST!

 

For all your Apple Repair Herts needs

WCS iBlog – Free Apple Repairs

WCS iBlog

Information, Hints & Comment on the IT World

Free Apple Product Repairs!

 
There’s no such thing as a free lunch, the old and let’s face it, over-used, cliché says,
but funnily enough there is such a thing as a free Apple product Repair!

If you go to the following link: Free Apple Product Repairs you can see which Apple Products are currently eligible for a free repair due to manufacturer recall. This includes Mac’s, iPhone’s & Apple Accessories. Some products included are several years old.

If you’ve had the same issue repaired at cost, even by a third-party, you may be eligible for a refund of the repair cost from Apple.

So why not go see if you can have something for nothing!
 

if you have a problem with an Apple Mac, give us a call

on 01582 831 533 today and we’ll help you find a solution FAST!

 

For all your Apple Repair Herts needs