The History of the Laptop – An Infographic

From workstation replacement to high end gaming systems, today laptops are doing what desktops couldn’t a few years ago. How did the personal computer evolve from filling up an entire room to the space on your lap?

Tek Squad traces the evolution of this ubiquitous computing device with this infographic.

 

IT Support Infographic -HarvardTech

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Common Printer Problems and Fix Tips

Despite the popularity of email, online document sharing and the means to send invoices, payments and correspondence online, there are still times when you want or need to print items, which is why a lot of people still have a printer. Printers are more advanced than the first kinds; they combine with faxes and scanners, and the quality of print you can achieve is better than ever. Despite advanced technology involved in printers these days, there are, as with everything, still problem and there are a number of common printer problems, and there are a number of them that you can overcome yourself with some simple fix tips.

 

It sounds so simple but to prevent issues in the first place read, and then hang onto, the instructions! Knowing how it works and how to carry out basic functions will always save you time. There are also usually a number of the most common issues explained at the back of the instructions and having these to hand can save you time. There will also be important information you will need on there.

 

One piece of information is the kind of ink and ink cartridge that your printer needs. The ink will run out at one point and so make sure that you buy the right one. Using the wrong kind of ink is a sure fire way of breaking your printer and once you’ve broken it in this way it needs a professional to fix it; an expense you could do without. Take the make and model with you to the place that you are buying the ink from, or better yet, those instructions with the information on.

 

Paper jams are a classic issue with printers also, and this is where the paper is stuck in the printer, and the pressed nature of the printer will make yanking the paper out a mission as well as potentially breaking the printer even more. To fix a paper jam first turn off the printer. You can then inspect the tray that the the printed paper falls in to. If you can see the paper that is stuck and it is quite far through, it may be possible to manually remove it gently. If not, open the printer door that give you access to the printer ink cartridges or toner and look for the stuck paper and again if the paper is visible then you can manually remove it. Then turn the printer back on. If haven’t been able to see paper, or it is not in an area where it is visible, it might be that your printer is experiencing a hardware problem. Contact the printer manufacturer for more help with repairing it.

 

Problems more complicated than you are able to understand or that you cannot find an answer to should always be referred to a professional computer repair individual or company to ensure that you don’t make any problem worse.  

Precaution measures to take when outsourcing laptop repairs

The modern laptop is a great business tool, as these days you can carry out most of the functions that you can on a desktop computer but with the added bonus of being able to use them on the move. Choosing the right laptop, as with everything, is vital to ensure you can use it for everything you want to, but the effective running of it means regular maintenance. Even if you take all the precautions that you can such as virus prevention software and carry out regular cleaning both inside and out, your laptop will inevitably run into problems at one point and you will need to source a laptop repairs company unless you have someone in house trained to do so. Sourcing a company to fix something you don’t understand, and few people know the inner workings of their beloved laptops, can be intimidating in the same way as buying a car; how do I know if their taking advantage of my ignorance, so there are a few precautions to take when outsourcing laptop repairs:
Ask around for recommendations. Nothing beats first-hand experience and so even if this is your first time outsourcing laptop repairs, you may well know someone who does this already or has done in the past. Ask about companies they have tried, and get an idea of which you should consider and which you should avoid like the plague.

Get the person with the most knowledge of laptops and laptops repairs within your company, or even just someone you know and trust, to talk to companies you are considering. If they are ‘talking the talk’ and clearly understand what is being said, companies will feel much less able to try and full any sort of fast one with you, whether that’s including repairs that aren’t necessary or saying a job will take longer than it will.
Have a company lined up to carry out any laptop repairs in advance instead of waiting for a problem before finding one. This means that you will have more time to find a company you trust and feel comfortable as well as check for references, instead of being in a rush to find someone, anyone, to get your laptop going again; you won’t be held to ransom on time.

How to clean your HeatSink

First of all lets clarify what a heat sink is. A heat sink is primarily used to manage the heat levels of the CPU. When microprocessor is running, it starts to give off a lot of heat and unless the heat is removed from the CPU, the computer will shut down to protect itself. Otherwise the CPE would become irrevocably damaged and you’d be left with no “brain” for your computer to run on.

So why do I need to clean my heatsink?

For several reasons in fact but the most clear one is that a clean heatsink is an efficient heatsink. Cleaning your heatsink will help make your laptop or computer run smoother and will also extend the life of it. To clean your heatsink you will need three things. A screwdiver, a can of compressed air and some thermal paste.

First of all you’ll need to find a model specific guide for your laptop or computer so that you know exactly how you can dismantle your laptop or computer and access your heatsink. Once you have located your heat sink and removed it, here are the tips you’ll need to clean it.

Using the can of compressed air, you need to locate the vents of the heat sink and give them a quick blast of air as they’ll be covered in dust. You should also detach the fan that’s connected to the heatsink (some heatsinks don’t have this) and give this a blast with the can of compressed air too. Top Tip: Wedge a pencil in the fan to stop it spinning whilst you give it the air.

When cleaning the grill, if the can of air doesn’t do the trick 100% the first time, get some cotton buds and give the grills a going over.

Finally, when you go to replace the heat sink, there should already be some residual paste on there, wipe this off with some kitchen roll. You should then apply the paste you’ve got. Make sure not to over apply this, as applying too much can lead to an overspill and the paste will damage the CPU pins.

Once you’ve cleaned your heatsink, applied the thermal paste and put it all back together, your computer should be running as if it were just out the box.

How to Repair a Scratch on your Laptop Screen

 

All computers and laptops are prone to damage, especially portable devices. Portable devices are out and about all the time and even if you protect it as much as possible with cases and covers it is still subject to a lot more wear and tear than a home or office based computer. One of the most delicate parts of a computer is the screen and it can get scratched pretty easily. This doesn’t mean your screens needs replacing there are ways to repair a computer screen scratch.

laptop-screen-repair

There are several unconventional methods involving surprising ingredients some of which only disguise a scratch. These include peanut butter or toothpaste!!

One of the few that does tend to work is the mixing of bicarbonate of soda and glass cleaner. The combination of the two has been shown to remove scratches. There are also a number of specialist products that can remove

If this doesn’t work it may be worth getting further advice from someone specialising in computer and laptop repair about how to repair the scratch. If it could be that it needs extra attention from a professional, but it could be too serious to repair and the screen could need replacing. Only a professional will be able to tell you this.n to remove scratches. There are also a number of specialist products that can remove scratches from screens and these are available pretty widely. At laptop and computer repairs shops you can find the best of these products and people that work there will be able to advise you on which of these products are the best for the make and model of your computer. Most of these will remove the average kind of computer or laptop scratch on the screen.

What is Two Factor Authentication?

jpegTwo Factor Authentication(2fa) is actually a lot more common than people think. But what is it? Also known as multi factor authentication, 2FA a two step process used to verify yourself in two ways. The most common example of 2fa comes from the banking world.

If you conduct online banking you’ll already be guessing at what I mean. A lot of banks now are sending physical tokens to users of their online banking services, such as HSBC with their fobs or Barclays with their Pin Sentries. The process is as follows, you would visit the bank’s website and enter a username and password, you would then enter another password into your fob or pin sentry, this then generates a unique code that you enter into the site, verifying yourself twice.

The reason this is more secure is because even if the thief takes your bank card and knows your log in details, they won’t be able to generate the code needed to log in. It’s like using two passwords and in this case it just happens that to generate a password you need to know another pin, but internet banking needs to be more secure and complex as there’s more at stake than an email account.

So if you ever have the change to enable Two Factor Authentication, do it.

The perfect computer for the average household

Since computers were first invented they have been used for a variety of different reasons.  Initially they were only for large organisations, multi-national companies and government departments.  Bit by bit they filtered down into smaller companies, the education system and for personal use.  Computers became smaller and also more sophisticated; able to carry out a much wider range of tasks, and as such there was a greater demand for them.  Now most companies use them for at least one aspect of their business, and a large number of households have a computer and access to the internet for entertainment as well as functional reasons such as work and homework.

Unless someone works in a specialist area, it is unlikely that the average household needs a particularly elaborate computer; the main functions are office programs such as word processing and spread sheets, Internet access, using social media networks such as Facebook and Twitter, and email to keep in touch with others.  This kind of computer is not overly expensive but they are still not a cheap piece of equipment and as such should be taken care of in the usual ways; used with care and protected from viruses with protection software.

Home computers can break no matter what you do but the relatively simple nature of them makes them easier to fix than a work system or network.  There are a lot of shops, companies and individuals that carry out computer repairs London wide, and you will find that if it’s at all possible to repair it, this will be much cheaper than replacing it, with the level of function that you need for an average household computer.  Those carrying out computer repairs London wide will either work from a shop that you can leave it at or if you are home based, they can come to you.  The more local that the company is the less expensive it is likely to be.

If you are looking for someone for computer repairs North London wide for your household computer, then give us a call to discuss how affordable having your computer repaired is.