The Tech Guy Blog

Update your PC to Windows 10 version 1909 Soon

If you are using Windows 10, you will need to upgrade to the new version 1909 soon. Version 1803, which came out Spring 2018, is already going out of support! It will reach its end of service on November 12, 2019. The reasoning is likely because Microsoft really believes in users keeping their Windows systems updated, secure, and safe. Even though you may not be able to discern the differences in 1909 (or use the new features), the security patches are the most important aspect of this situation.

Reformat your devices!

Over time, personal devices and computers can become slower to respond to actions, gestures, or to boot up applications. When this starts to happen, generally we think of what kind of device or computer we want to replace our old ones with.

A great thing you can do instead is to refresh, or reformat your device! By formatting your device to factory settings, it can help prolong the life of your device/computer and keep it running fairly quickly. However, make sure you properly back up your data on your device/computer before you reformat it: follow the 3-2-1 backup rule.

Sending Private Information Online

FireFox Send

When sending private information online, it is best to avoid doing so through email as the email servers between your email provider and the other person's are not that secure. However if you need to send private information via email, Leo recommends zipping your file content and sending them the password to access the zipped content through another means such as phone via text message.

Other services that you can use to send such highly confidential information are FireFox Send or ShareFile!

Printing Your Emails

Epson WorkForce ET-3750 Printer

When printing emails from our web browser, we have a tendency to go select the Print command within the browser's pull-down menu to print out our emails. However, when you print out your emails this way, it can look like you're missing a chunk of your printed content or it is formatted in a weird way.

The solution is to use the Print command within the email client on your web browser. For example, Gmail has a printer icon when you go into your email that you can select and it will show you how it will look like before you actually print out the page. 

Be careful when searching for phone numbers online

When you're searching for a company's phone number or phone numbers in general online, it's best to get the phone number directly from the company's main website or a trusted website in general. If you were to do a search for a company phone number through a search engine, you could end up finding and calling a phony phone number that says it's the companies that are listed at the top of the results page. Hackers tend to buy ads for specific numbers or information that is related to a legitimate company.

Replace your HDD with a SSD

Solid State Drive

If your computer is still using a big Hard Disk Drive (HDD), it is highly recommended to replace your HDD with a Solid State Drive (SSD) as your primary hard drive. The main difference between an SSD and HDD is an SSD is flash storage and has no moving parts within it. Because of that, they're smaller and will take up less space in a PC. An HDD is made of magnetic tape and has moving mechanical parts within it and are more prone to being damaged than an SSD. You can pick up a 500GB SSD for between $60 - $80 on Amazon, depending on which brand you go with.

Be careful when using services like Facebook, or apps like FaceApp

FaceApp

When you use services like Facebook or Instagram, they are collecting some amount of information about you that can be used by third parties. Even though Facebook has started to curve more into a privacy-focused company, there are still using your information to an extent. So be careful what you do on Facebook. And with FaceApp being very popular right now, there are some privacy concerns when using that app. In its Term of Service, you are giving the company the rights to use your photos of you in whichever way they want.

Do Both Imaging and Incremental File Backups

Imaging a hard drive is basically creating an exact mirror copy of the hard drive. The copy is bootable and can be blasted onto the same or new hard drive fairly quickly. Of course, it can get out of date since the image is "frozen" in time, so making an image every month is a good idea. However, it is also smart to make a file-by-file backup procedure for extra peace of mind. It is recommended to use both backup methods in order to conserve important media and files.