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Over the years, our professional staff members have answered many questions posed by our customers. Our goal is to provide information that is clear, succinct and useful. The questions below represent those that have been most commonly asked. If you would like to learn more about one of the topics, or if you have a question that is not represented on our list, please don’t hesitate to call us at 714-969-3001 or email us at [email protected]. As always, HB Computers is dedicated to superior customer service at all times. No question is too small or too complex for our undivided attention.

My computer was infected with a virus, and now I have lost some files. What should I have done to prevent this from happening in the first place? And, what should I do to try to retrieve my files?

You are not alone! Viruses are tricky – and they can continue to wreak havoc on users’ files. According to statistics, more than half of computer users have experiencedsome type of virus attack. However, there are certain actions that increase your vulnerability.

  • Clicking on link sent from untrusted sites or an anonymous email
  • Using pirated or unknown software, programs, or applications
  • Using a new mobile device that may not be secure
  • Downloading files from unknown sources

It’s important to install a trusted antivirus program when you purchase a new computer or reinstall the operating system of the one you have now. A computer virus is more than just a ‘data killer.’ It can actually cause serious damage to your entire system!

To answer your question about retrieving lost files, you may be able to restore a lostfile usingthe Windowsbackup if it was enabled before your file disappeared. Here’s how to do it in Windows 7.

Click on ‘Start’ button from the bottom left corner of computer screen and choose ‘Control Panel.’

Choose ‘System and Security’ and then click ‘Backup and Restore.’

To continue, choose ‘Select another backup to restore files from’ or ‘Recover system setting or your computer.’

You can also try to restore files from previous version. Here are the steps for Windows 7.

Click on the‘Start button’ from the bottom left corner of your computer screen, and choose‘Computer,’or double click on your desktop’s‘Computer’ icon. If you want to recover a deleted folder from the ‘D’ drive, click on ‘D’ drive to see a pop-up menu and find an option like ‘Open.’ Then select ‘Restore previous versions’ to continue.

NOTE: If you want to recover a file after a virus attack, be sure to enter the drive that includes the folder before the virus attack.

Before restoring a file or folder to its previous version, select a specific previous version, and then click ‘Open’ to view it in order to make sure that this is the version you actually need. Remember that you can’t open or copy previous versions of files and folders that were created by Windows Backup. The only thing you can do is to try to restore them.

Remember that these methods are only useful when the ‘Backup’ and ‘Restore’ functions are enabled.

If you are in doubt, call HB Computers at 714-969-3001 so that our professional technicians can give you guidance – or let us do the work for you! We are fast, efficient, and are able to restore lost files 90% of the time with a fixed rate service!

For some reason, my laptop cannot connect to Wi-Fi, but my other devices can. What can I do?

You can try several things, but first make sure you didn’t inadvertently disable the connection by pressing the Wi-Fi connection key on your keyboard while you were typing. If that’s not the case try one of these solutions:

  • Control Panel > Network and Internet > Network and Sharing Center > Change Adapter Settings (on the right) > Right-Click the connection > Disable > Wait for few seconds > Re-enable.
  • Update your Windows and drivers
  • Remove AVG if you have it
  • Update the firmware of your router
  • See if there are any loose connections
  • Restart the router
  • If these methods don’t work, type in ‘Device Manager’ on start > Network Adapters > Right-click the device > Uninstall > Restart your Laptop.

Still having problems? Give us a call at 714-969-3001!

I responded to a message that I thought was from Microsoft advising me to call a 1-888 number because my computer had been infected by a virus. I soon realized that it was a scam. Can I bring my computer in for you to check whether my files have been corrupted or if my information has been compromised?

Absolutely – simply bring your device to our office personally or ship the HDD to us for a comprehensive diagnosis. We work on all types of files and operating systems and all brands of laptops and desktops. If there is any spyware or viruses, we can remove them. And if any files have been destroyed, damaged or corrupted, we can restore them 95% of the time. This includes just about anything – from documents, music, QuickBooks, SQL and spreadsheets to digital pictures and architectural designs.

Give us a call at 714-969-3001. Although the diagnostic fee for a MAC or PC is $50, we will apply it to the final repair cost if any cleaning or file restoration needs to be done.

Why is my CPU usage so high?

There are several reasons why you are experiencing a high CPU usage, and most of these causes are avoidable. Often a high CPU usage will simply slow your computer system, but you will still be able to get your work done. But sometimes, it can be so high that it stops your system completely, and you will have to manually shut it down and restart.

  • There are many types of malware that can max your CPU usage. Removing malware requires an expert – it is a task that our technical team can usually do very easily. Please note that this is best done as soon as you notice the problem before the malware does more damage. Once the malware is removed, the CPU will be perfectly normal. The best way to prevent this is to install and run a trusted antivirus/antispyware program.
  • A common practice that can affect your CPU performance is multitasking. We all do this inadvertently at time. Just remember – the more programs you use at one time, the higher your CPU usage will be!
  • Sometimes high CPU usage is due to incompatible software. For instances, some programs are too sophisticated for Windows XP, while others predate Windows 7 with no compatibility patch. Some may have specific hardware requirements, and others may actually be corrupt.

Call us at 714-969-3001 so that we can advise you the best course to take. There is no need to be dealing with a high CPU usage!

How important is it to partition my hard drive?

Partitioning is simply a way to organize the physical space on a hard drive – similar to a directory. Most PCs have one physical hard disk drive and only one partition labeled C. Although it’s not mandatory at all (and many computer users choose not to do so), there are several advantages to having more than one partition.

  • If you have two partitions, one can be for your operating system, and one could be for your personal data. Hard drives are not as durable as you may think. This way, your personal data is less likely to get lost in a computer crash. If you have to reinstall your operating system, your data will be safer.
  • Also, with multiple partitions, you can select which partition with sensitive data should be encrypted.
  • Some components of an operating system need storage space to operate. In Windows, if there is no available space on the drive where it is installed, you will not be able to print.
  • You can shorten your operating system boot time by placing your operating system in a partition at the start of the hard disk drive.
  • It’s easier to access your information because when you click “Computer” from the Start menu in Windows 7, you’ll see each partition clearly with its own drive letter.
  • It’s easier to organize your data. You can have separate partitions for your documents, pictures, music, videos, games, and back-up data.
  • It’s easier to back up your personal data when it is stored in smaller partitions. At the same time, it’s easier to perform upgrades on your operating system.
  • If necessary, you can use more than one operating system on the same PC and share data among the operating systems.
  • Performance is better because hard disk drives work better on smaller amounts of segmented data. Less-frequently used data can be separated from the data used most frequently.

A cautionary note:

Since partitions do not share free space, if one partition runs out of space, you’ll need to resize, move or delete other partitions to address the free space problem. If you need to do this, be sure back up your data before making any changes.

If you have any questions about partitioning your hard drive, please don’t hesitate to call HB Computers at 714-969-3001. Our expert technicians are ready – and eager – to help!

Why do motherboards fail?

The motherboard is often considered the heart of a computer. As long as it’s intact, most computer problems can be successfully repaired by a skilled technician at a reasonable cost. But occasionally motherboards do fail! Here are the most common reasons why :

  • A major cause is a power surge. A sudden change of voltage can damage the circuit of your motherboard. This can occur when there is a problem with the wiring in your home or office, an unequal draw of power by appliances sharing the electrical source, a problem with the power supplier outside your home or office, or even an electrical storm. Plugging your computer into a good surge protector is the best way to control power surges by neutralizing the effects. And during severe storms, it may be best to shut down your computer and wait until the storm subsides.
  • Dust and dirt can cause your motherboard to overheat by clogging the fan that is meant to keep it ventilated. Even pet hair and tar from cigarettes can be the culprit! This can be avoided if you try to keep your work area dust free and schedule a regular cleaning with certified technicians.
  • Performing too many multiple operations at one time, such as when you are gaming or if you are watching a movie for an extended period, can also cause your motherboard to overheat. Be sure to give your computer a rest from time to time and keep it in a cool and well-ventilated area.
  • An accidental spill of liquid on your computer or a sudden impact caused by dropping your computer can cause your motherboard to fail. Spills are common and can short out the circuits. If this happens, shut down (or disconnect the power) and remove the battery. Do not turn it back on. Instead, take it to a qualified computer repair service.
  • Since motherboards are mass produced, sometimes manufacturing defects occur. Your computer has a manufacturer’s warranty to protect you from these occasional defects. A qualified technician can assess your motherboard failure and determine whether it is a most likely a defect or due to another cause.
  • At some point your motherboard will fail simply because of aging. An electrical circuit board has a finite life span. At this point you may have to replace your computer. But with care, your computer should give you many hours of work time. Some of the better motherboards last up to 50,000 hours!

Don’t hesitate to call HB Computers if you have any questions or concerns about your computing or mobile device. We are here to help you with a staff of some of the very best technicians in the area!

What is a File System Corruption ?

File system corruptions can occur on both PCs and Macs and on internal drives or external drives. When a file system corruption occurs, you usually receive an error message and are not able to access your file. Most causes of file system corruptions are because of not properly following startup or shutdown procedures. Sometimes it is due to a hardware failure or other causes. A power outage or accidental unplugging while files are open can also cause a corruption in your file system.

When this happens, you might want to first try a Disk Defragmenter to rearrange fragmented data, but if disk defragment is not responding, try to repair the disk first by using a SFC/SCANNOW command and then running a CHKDSK/F command. CHKDSK/F scans your hard drive for errors and can help determine the overall performance of your PC. It takes CHKDSK a step further in helping you fix system problems automatically.

After running these two steps, test to see if the disk defragmentation works, and then try to perform a system restore.

This may seem daunting unless you are familiar with these options. If your file system has been corrupted and you need help, please don’t hesitate to call us at 714-969-3001. Our experienced technicians can fix this problem for you quickly and efficiently!

If I spill water, coffee, or wine on my MacBook and laptops, what should I do?

There are several steps to take if you spill something on your computing device. First – unplug your device (or if it’s a keyboard, disengage it from your device). If it’s notebook, turn it off and then take out the battery. Then turn your keyboard or notebook upside down so the liquid drains out and doesn’t reach the circuits.

If you spilled water on it, you won’t need to clean it as the next step, but if it’s coffee, wine, beer, sodas or any other liquid, you should clean it because the residues may damage the circuits. If it’s a notebook, remove the keyboard from the device and rinse it with clear water (swabbing whatever you cannot reach with rubbing alcohol). If it is a keyboard, see if you can pry the key-tops off the keyboard and rinse with pure water – but if there’s no water pooling under the keys, just use an alcohol swab rather than a water rinse.

Then let it dry in a warm ventilated place for at least 24 hours before plugging it back in. 48 hours would be even better. Another option for drying is to submerge the device in rice after completing the steps above.

Please call us if you would like a professional to do this. We are capable of fixing most logic boards after a spill. Every case is different, but HB Computers is simply the best when it comes to computer repair.

What does the term Malwarebytes mean?

Malwarebytes Anti-Malware (MBAM) is an application that removes malware. It was created for the Microsoft Windows operating system in 2008. The free version can be easily downloaded and scans every time that it is started manually. It removes worms, Trojans, rootkits, rogues, spyware, and other dangerous malware from your PC. The paid version of MBAM provides both scheduled scans and real-time scans.

What is a hard drive failure and why does it happen so often?

Hard drive failure happens when the hard disk drive on your computer fails to function properly and the information stored on your computer can no longer be accessed. This happens for a variety of reasons, ranging from hardware life expectancy to human error.

A hard drive is a mechanical device with moving parts that are subject to wear and tear. The parts operate with amazing precision and can be fragile. Hard drive failure can be gradual or sudden. Failure can happen during normal operations, or it can be due to an external cause like exposure to water, a liquid spill, a system or enclosure overheating, or a sharp impact. Sometimes it’s simply because parts have worn out. At other times they fail prematurely if there is a manufacturing defect. Some of the most common destructive forces that can damage your hard drive are:

  • Overheating and insufficient ventilation
  • Overworked hardware with no down time
  • Smoke or fire
  • Physical damage like any type of physical force like dropping
  • Power surges
  • Water damage
  • Corrupted files due to not closing a program properly before turning off your computer
  • Human error – like accidently deleting files that are imperative for the functionality of the disk drive

By being careful, you will be able to avoid the destruction of files that cannot be easily retrieved. Backing up your data is one of your very best protections against irrevocable damage. Call HB Computers at 714-969-3001 for professional advice.

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