Posts Tagged ‘#power’

Norton Power Eraser

Helpful Hints, Warnings | Posted by Dennis August 17th, 2012

If you’re using Norton for your PC protection, you may have wondered about some of the extra tools that they offer.  Although I REALLY like Norton’s virus and malware protection, these tools are practically worthless.  The main two I’m talking about are called Norton Power Eraser (NPE) and the Norton Bootable Recovery Tool (NBRT).   First of all, Power Eraser is a TERRIBLE name for this software.  It implies that it’s a scrubbing tool or something.  But MOSTLY I should warn you:  If you get a message from Norton that you should run NPE, you most likely have a ROOTKIT!  This is the worst kind of infection, and allows total control of your computer.  The really sad part is that NPE probably won’t be able to remove it!  The tool seems to hang on removal or completely fail, and the boot tool rarely works unless you burn a CD of it.  Your best bet, if this happens, is to download and run ComboFix from this site.  (NOTE:  It’s the second Download button.  The first one is an ad).  You should turn off your virus protection while it runs.  It removes the vast majority of rootkits without a hitch.  But if all this makes you nervous, just take your PC to a good technician, and tell them the problem.   By the way, I still highly recommend Norton Internet Security.  I’ve only had ONE infection, out of hundreds of PC’s, in the last year since I started recommending it.  It’s great at prevention, which is the key in the first place. 


Helpful Hints, Warnings | Posted by Dennis March 16th, 2011

The power in your PC is supplied by a box that turns AC into DC.  It delivers 5 and 12 volt power all over the computer; your hard drives, motherboard, video, EVERYTHING.  Most PC makers skimp on this little device, and give you a wimpy little 250-350 Watt supply.  It’s fine as long as you don’t upgrade or add anything to your system, but the minute you do LOOK OUT.  Under-powered systems can have the WEIRDEST, most BIZARRRE symptoms of any other issue on a computer.  If you buy a high end video card to play games with, plan on shelling out another $50-90 for a 6-700 Watt supply.  It’s a good investment that will guarantee no flaky behavior from power shortages.

AC Power

Helpful Hints, News | Posted by Dennis January 4th, 2011

AC Power from your outlets is usually pretty ugly, and a surge strip isn’t enough to protect your PC.  Surge protection helps only if the voltage goes TOO HIGH.  Brownouts and blackouts can also cause major damage (we’ve had rolling rolling brownouts destroy the hard drive, mainboard, and memory in a single  night).  The cure?  A BATTERY.  Your laptop has one built in, but for your desktop PC you can buy a UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supply) to hold up the voltage if needed.  They even have a data plug for your computer, so it knows if Windows should shut down for you.  APC and Cyber Power are two of the popular brands.  If you already have one, be sure to check/change the battery every three years or so.