The Computer Support Help Desk offers on-campus computer assistance and support service to students. The Help Desk is staffed with trained technicians familiar with the unique problems students' face with their computers. We only support virus and network related issues.
Back up your personal data!
Or three ways to save your life.
Hard drives have moving parts and break down more frequently then other computer parts. If your hard drive breaks, not only will your computer be unable to run, but all of your data could be lost as well. Sometimes data can be recovered from a dead hard drive, but this is never a cheap or quick process. This can be especially devastating to a student during finals week. To avoid this problem you can back up your data, this means simply making another copy of the data. There are several ways to do this (see below). You should always have at least two copies of data that you don’t want to lose. Some people back up their data once a day, others do so once a month.
1. Use the K drive! Every student has a K drive on the server at St. Scholastica. It is a private, secure place to store files. Students are given 100 MB of space to store files. When logged into a Lab computer, go to My Computer and look for your username under Network Drives. For more information, refer to the New Student Orientation Video.
2. Another option you have is to buy an external hard drive. These come in sizes from 6 GB up to 2 TB. You can get a good 200 GB for less then $100. External hard drives are the easiest way to back up personal data. You can use them as USB devices like a flash drive. All you need to do is copy and paste files. You can also configure most external hard drives to automatically back up your hard drive.
3. Burn your data to a disk. DVDs work out best for burning your data. Most DVDs hold 4.7 GB. (CDs hold 700 MB.) Most users only have about 10 - 20 GB of data to back up. Thus, five DVDs are sufficient. However, burning that many DVDs can be slow and expensive.
7 tips on virus and spyware (malware)
1. Make sure you only have one Anti-virus program installed at once. Often anti-virus programs conflict with each other slowing your computer and making your anti-virus programs ineffective.
2. Make sure you are getting virus definition updates. Your anti-virus software is basically worthless without the updates. Your anti-virus can’t find new viruses if it does not know they exist.
3. If you had paid anti-virus software make sure your subscription is still valid. If it is not the program won’t work.
4. Don’t use peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing networks. P2P networks are notorious for installing spyware on users computers. Most IT professionals agree the number one way to get malware infections is by using P2P networks. Some popular p2p networks are Limewire, Bear Share, Bittorent, and Frostwire
5. If you need malware protection the college provides Symantic Corporate Edition to students living on campus. Additionally, for students living off campus there are free anti-virus programs available for download. http://www.download.com/Antivirus-Firewall-Spyware/?tag=dir Note: St. Scholastica does not endorse or support products on this page.
6. Run windows updates once a month. Windows updates will fix security holes in windows. This will help block malware from infecting your computer. Automatic updates don’t download all the updates, so you need to start it manually.
7. Run a full system scan once a week. This is the best way to make sure that you don’t have any malware on your computer. Additionally, if the scan finds a problem it will fix it for you…(most of the time).
9 ways to make a computer run faster!
1. Remove Malware (see above)
2.Use Disk Cleanup. Disk Cleanup gets rid of temporary junk that your computer uses. Not only will it free up a few MB to a few GB of space, it can also delete some malware, and it will make your computer run faster. To use Disk Cleanup go to start- my computer (or double click on “My Computer”)- right click on your hard drive – go to properties – click on Disk Cleanup.
3. Defragment your hard drive. Defragment your hard drive moves around your files so that your computer can find them the fastest. To defragment your hard drive go to start- my computer (or double click on “My Computer”)- right click on your hard drive - properties - tools - defragment now.
4. Run check disk. Check disk looks for and corrects errors on your hard drive. To run check disk go to start- my computer - (or double click on “My Computer”) - right click on your hard drive - properties -tools - check now.
5. Download the latest Windows Service Pack (SP). Windows services packs are very large updates that will make your computer more secure, fix bugs, and improve your computers overall performance. Windows Vista SP1 makes file transfers and boots times up to 30% faster! To download a SP and all other relevant windows updates go to the windows update site. Some computers have a windows update button in the start menu. The newest XP SP is SP3 and for Vista it’s SP1. http://www.windowsupdate.microsoft.com/ You can also choose “Windows Updates” under the “Tools” menu in the Internet Explorer browser.
6. Try Firefox. Firefox is an open source web browser that takes up a lot less memory and runs much faster than some other web browsers. It’s easy to install and allows you to import your bookmarks from any other web browser. It also has an integrated spell checker.
7. Remove programs you never use from your hard drive. If don’t have any reason to keep a computer program, get rid of it. All it does is sit there taking up space on your Hard Drive slowing down your computer. To remove programs go to start - settings - control panel - add remove a program - click on the program - then hit uninstall
8. If you are running the Windows Vista operating system turn off effects. The transparent effects in Windows Vista take up a lot of system power sometimes as much 40% of your memory (depending on the computers hardware setup). You can turn off these features and your computer will naturally run much faster. You can also reset the whole interface to look like Windows 2000/XP operating systems, which will also make your computer run faster.
9. Configure programs to not start up automatically. Many programs like AIM and WLM are set by default to run in the background when the computer starts, regardless of whether you are using it or not. It will take up system resources even when you are not using them. You can set most programs like that to not load at start up. Not all programs load at start-up.