Every year our technician gurus here at LaptopMD like to share the knowledge and insights that they’ve gained throughout the year with our customers to help you make smarter holiday tech purchases. Buying gifts related to technology can be intimidating especially if you’re buying for someone already savvy in technology or if you are unaware of the various options and brands available. Use our holiday shopping ideas that we’ve put together to help you with your gift buying this season and relieve some of the holiday stress!
We provide gift ideas for every type of computer user in your house: students, professionals, and normal everyday users. Our list covers Mac and PC laptops, as well as netbooks. We look at the latest in cellphone/smartphone technology and help you determine whether or not you should buy an Android phone or an iPhone as a gift. Additionally, our guide looks at software titles suited for every type of computer user. Let us know what you think in the comments and if you have any questions regarding your holiday tech purchases.
The laptop market is full of options when considering which one to buy. You may ask yourself questions like these when you go to make a purchase:
What’s the difference between a netbook and a laptop?
What features should I focus on?
Mac or PC, which one provides the better deal?
Use our holiday shopping guide as a tool to sort through the various options you are bound to come across.
Choose the Right One
There are many options out there and the number of choices can be daunting for anyone, including those who work with computers for a living! To help simplify the laptop buying process, we have come to trust the guides put together PC World Magazine. PC World’s guides provide the comprehensive help that you’re looking for. There are several comparison guides online and we’ve included links to our favorite guides throughout this post.
When using these guides and buying a laptop, be sure to take into account the following considerations:
Functionality and Features
The End User
Some laptops are good for students but not functional for professionals. Knowing who you are buying for and what they want will help you frame your decision and make everybody happy.
Whether you’re buying a new laptop or fixing an old one, one thing you’re probably very conscious of is price. But do you really know how all that money you’re spending gets allocated? And for that matter, what IS the most valuable part of your laptop? Is it the screen? Maybe it’s that super expensive Intel processor you bought? Or is it something else entirely…
If you said ‘DATA!’ then you’re probably right. At LaptopMD, the most distraught customers we see are those with data loss. Whether it’s family photos, your iTunes collection, or Excel spreadsheets for work, we often don’t realize how valuable our data is until we lose it. This leads me to another good point:
BACKUP! BACKUP! BACKUP!
If you aren’t backing up all of your valuable data in at least one place NOT on your laptop’s hard drive then you’re at risk! Backing up your data is the best way to avoid that sharp twang in your stomach when you realize your vacation pictures from the last two years are gone for good. That being said, when presented with data loss you almost always have data recovery options available to you. It’s not cheap though, and you can end up paying anywhere from $99-$2500 depending on the level of damage.
A hundred bucks can get you some basic software solutions for bringing your data back. If you’ve got any kind of physical damage or platter damage though, you’re looking at the $1000+ solutions. Imagine a clean room with giant machinery built specifically to read data off dissected hard drives. They’ll take the data plates out, soak them in patented aqueous solutions and recover every 1 and 0 they can. Yeah, it’s intense.
While it’s typically the corporate clients who NEED those lost documents that opt for the pricey, extreme solutions, there’s one practice that can help everyone. Have I mentioned it before?
BACKUP! BACKUP! BACKUP!
As much as we love your business, we’d prefer to be selling you external hard drives instead of telling you your data is toast. That being said, I think I’ll end on a shameless plug. J If you DO experience any data loss, we are here to help! Bring your laptop in and we’ll get back any and everything that is physically possible.
We wanted to give you an inside look, today, at how you can go about troubleshooting laptop motherboard and CPU problems. Many times a computer may stop working or it may function abnormally if there is a problem with your motherboard and/or CPU. A computer’s motherboard is best described as the central nervous system of the computer. Everything from your laptop to your desktop computer to your smartphone has a motherboard of sort. The motherboard connects the various hardware pieces together. The CPU, or the Central Processing Unit, is the piece of hardware where most of the computer’s processing work is done. This might be described as the brain of the computer.
Combined together, the motherboard and CPU are at the root of a lot of problems that can occur with your laptop and where we might look first if you bring in your laptop for repair. Slow computer speeds, system crashes, and other hardware problems can be a result of a malfunctioning motherboard or CPU. Remember that our certified laptop and computer repair engineers are trained to diagnose these specific types of problems. We can help you if you don’t where to begin. Contact us today about any problems you might be having with your laptop or computer. Continue reading →
Dusty laptops/computers tend to overheat and as a resultthey may restart automatically or not function properly. When a lot of dust and dirt builds up inside the computer, the computer will stop functioning properly and may need to be taken in for a ‘repair’ job where technicians must take the computer apart and perform a deep clean to get the computer to run properly again. As preventive maintenance, here are some tips on how to clean your computer, keep it functioning and running safely, and avoid taking it in to the repair shop.
Computer Cleaning Materials
1 Can of Compressed Air
A Few Cotton Balls
1 Soft Cloth
Make sure your computer is turned off and unplugged before you start cleaning your computer. This ensures that no part of the computer is harmed as you clean it.
Steps to Clean Individual Components
Blow away the excess surface dust with a can of compressed air.
To clean the keyboard, use cotton balls to remove large particles of dust between the keys, then blow away smaller dust particles with the can of compressed air.
Wipe the surface of the keys with a damp cloth but ensure that the cloth is not excessively damp as fluid can damage the computer’s keyboard.
Put a small amount of cleaning fluid on cloth and gently clean the screen. Make sure you don’t apply pressure while cleaning the computer screen.
To clean the ports on your computer, carefully wipe the inside of each port with cotton balls and then spray each of them with compressed air.
To clean the computer’s fan, hold it and spray it with compressed air. If you don’t hold it, the air will cause it to spin and could break it by making it spin faster.
To clean the DVD or CD Drive on your computer, open it and spray the compressed air inside.
Crashing hard drives, lengthy boot-up times and disappearing files turn computers into stress monsters that can send your heartbeat racing and blood pressure soaring. Even the tiniest of technological glitches can leave people fed up, frustrated and banging their desks in fury.
In our digitally dependent age, users face a never-ending stream of challenges, such as setting up a new computer, migrating to another operating system, keeping up-to-date with software applications and dealing with the continuous threats of viral infections and identity theft.
Technology’s Dark Side
A recent study by an industry think tank that focused on the dark side of modern technology reported that workers are becoming increasingly overwhelmed by what is being called ‘Computer Stress Syndrome.’ In its conclusion, the study said: “The reality is that numerous, persistent problems are troubling most computer users, creating unnecessary anguish and anxiety as a result.”
LaptopMD to the Rescue
When you find yourself breaking out into a cold sweat and raging at your machine, then it’s time to call in the specialists at LaptopMD. We are the laptop doctors who can pull out the proverbial stethoscope and diagnose your computer’s ailments. The best part of all is that we provide FREE estimates while you wait.
Our superlative services are drastically reducing the stress levels of thousands of customers who are now enjoying blissful states of nirvana. From data recovery and spyware removal to printer repairs and laptop data backup, there’s nothing we can’t handle.
Click here to find out how our team of specialists can make computer anguish and anxiety a thing of the past. We also offer a first-rate telephone support service, so we’re always on hand to get you out of a bind.