Do not get the fastest computer, because they are all
very fast now. If you are new, you cannot use the higher speed.
Get as much RAM as you can afford. The minimum for
reasonable use is 64 megs. RAM will determine performance much more than
Buy a battery back-up for $100, to protect against
power surges and—very important—to deliver good, consistent power with no
sags. Power sags will be very frequent and cause lots of problems. I don’t
know anyone who has won the lottery but I know several whose computers or
modems fried during a storm.
Buy Norton Utilities. It is the best companion to
your computer. It is like having the Mayo Clinic for computers next door.
Download Netsonic from the Internet. http://www.web3000.com It will speed up
your Internet work, even if you have DSL or cable modem.
Do not plug and unplug your keyboard while the
computer is running. The keyboard is always charged with a current and you
can fry something. It sounds like a bug zapper when you do it while hot.
OK, it’s your computer. Ignore my advice. Save ten seconds.
Keep liquids from any place where gravity or a spill
would dump them on the keyboard. Old insurance rule – if it can happen, it
will happen. Since the keyboard is always hot, a liquid spill could make
your computer dance around and blow smoke rings.
If you have data that would be very hard to
reproduce, back it up in a remote location. Computers and hard drives
fail. I was working on a download for someone when the entire computer
failed and refused to boot up. Just before that I forwarded some data that
would have been lost forever.
If you do a lot of work that you want copied to
another location, either use a CD burner (read/write) or run a cable
between two computers and network them. Yes, it was new to me a short time
ago, too. But those are the two best ways to back up a lot of information.
You need a run of cat-5 cable and two NIC cards to network two Windows
computers. Copying will then proceed at lightning speed.
If you are on the Internet a lot, punky teens are
trying to invade your computer. You must firewall your computer if you are
serious about using the Net. Buy Black Ice for this at http://www.netice.com/Products/default.htm.
Or use Zone Alarm for free: http://www.zonelabs.com/.
I get two invasion attempts per day because my DSL is always on, making my
computer easier to hit. If you use a 56k modem, you have a new Internet
address every time you get on, making you harder to invade. Test your
security at http://grc.com/.
To get a large, free, and ad-free website, contact http://www.cybercities.com/ and
fill out the proper form. You will get a 15 meg site. If you want to do it
and get me some space (I need more locations), send the resulting email to
me and I can load stuff to it. (Cybercities froze me out of loading
addition sites from my location. Sniff.) If you want limited help in
setting up one for your church or publications, let me know and I will
help. However, I only have time for Gospel related sites. You can get help
for personal pages on lots of sites.
Save this as a Word document so you can find it
later. Email gets lost.