mackeeper removal ram upgrade
By Asheville Computer Company / LaptopMacRecent Work / / 0 Comments

A recent customer reported that their Macbook, though only a few years old, was starting to run slow and had some programs installed that they could not remove.  Although, historically, the Mac has been better at not getting virus infections, malware infestations and nuisance adware type programs, that has changed recently.  OSX is completely capable of getting infected either by a virus, malware, proxy redirect or just about any other issue a PC user would face.

In this case, it was only a program called MacKeeper. MacKeeper was installed intentionally but because a nuisance with pop-ups and constant alerts slowing down the computer and interrupting normal use.  The user was unable to uninstall it and remove it from the computer. We were able shut down the program and get all signs of it removed along with a couple of other unnecessary programs.

While working on the laptop we let the user know that only a small amount of RAM was installed and that was a major source of their slowdown.  We upgraded their ram to 8GB from 2GB and the laptop was working better than ever and had plenty of RAM to ensure that several programs and browser tabs running at the same time wouldn’t slow it down, any more.

If your Mac is being slowed down by unwanted programs that start up when you boot or you would just like it to be cleaned up give us a call. While we do the clean-up and optimization we can check the hardware to see if anything can be upgraded or needs to be replaced to make it run, even better.

 

Complete Office Setup
By Asheville Computer Company / BusinessDesktopRecent WorkWindows / / 0 Comments

One of our recent clients ran a business with a dedicated retail office space but needed a complete setup for a office space at home. We quoted, configured, ordered and setup the entire home office setup without the user having to do any work. We can cover the whole process from start to finish with as little or as much effort on the business owners part as they want. For this customer we setup a Dell Micro PC with SSD hard drive, large Dell monitor, Epson business class inkjet printer, Microsoft Wireless Mouse and Keyboard and Adobe DC Pro.

Whether you have 1 or 10+ employees we can provide your entire business with the technology it needs to get the job done in the most efficient manner possible and without you having to manage your own IT needs. Along with procurement and setup of systems we can also setup networks: both wired and wireless, crucial backups and pre-preemptive monitoring of all systems to ensure the smooth operation of your business and resolve issues prior to them becoming an emergency.

If you know you have a need for any kind of technology in your company but are not sure what to do or don’t have the time to shop 10 stores and 1000’s of possible devices, then please give us a call and we can take care of your business’s IT needs from start to finish.

 

 

 

macbook failed hard drive
By Asheville Computer Company / LaptopMacRecent Work / / 0 Comments

This customer had a Macbook that was only a couple years old but had been dropped a few times and had some wear and tear on the outside and inside. As a result, the hard drive had been damaged and refused to boot. The failed hard drive was so badly damaged no data could be recovered directly from the drive. There was also some visible damage on the outside along with a very common problem with Mac laptops, missing feet.

We replaced the hard drive with a new solid state drive (SSD) and restored their data from a time machine backup. As a result of having a good backup they didn’t lose any data even though the hard drive failed.

They get the added benefit of having a much faster hard drive and it protects against any future drops or falls the laptop may take that would damage a normal spinning hard drive.

Don’t wait for your laptop hard drive to fail before bringing it to us for a repair. If your laptop has been dropped or treated roughly and you think it’s slowing down, as a result, bring it to us to have it checked out.

 

Dell 5588 SSD upgrade
By Asheville Computer Company / LaptopRecent Work / / 0 Comments

This customer brought us a fairly new Dell 5588 laptop that was working fine but was starting to feel a little sluggish. Even a new computer with a fast processor and lots of RAM can feel slow and sluggish due to the old spinning 5400 rpm hard drive.  The hard drive, especially the slow 5400 rpm mechanical drives, are the slowest part of a modern computer and causes most of the bottlenecks that most people experience when using their computer.

We upgraded this drive to an SSD that made this laptop faster than it was when it came out of the box.  Most manufacturers skimp on the hard drive speed and give you more space than you need because the large number looks attractive to buyers.

We know from experience that an SSD hard drive upgrade for your desktop or laptop can make a huge difference in the performance and enjoyment of your computer.  We can upgrade almost any computer and can do so with a fast turn around.

Don’t spend another frustrating day waiting on your Mac of PC computer.  Bring it to us and we will make it fly.

 

best spinning hard drive
By Asheville Computer Company / News / / 0 Comments

One Billion Drive Hours and Counting: Q1 2016 Hard Drive Stats

Backblaze recently released their quarterly data on hard drive failures for Q1 2016.  This is the ultimate source of info on a large number of hard drives tested over long periods from all the major manufacturers.  It’s impossible to get this much specific info over such a large set of drives without being in the backup business on a large scale.

From their testing it seems like HGST (Hitachi) is the brand to beat when it comes to large spinning hard drives.  If you have a need for large amounts of reliable storage then the HGST hard drives seem to be the way to go, for now.

If you have a need to store large amounts of data but aren’t sure of how to setup a PC or system for this please give us a call to discuss.

 

Mac Mini Upgrade
By Asheville Computer Company / DesktopMacRecent Work / / 0 Comments

This Mac Mini was a couple of years old and was due for some upgrades.  It was working OK, but was bogging down on videos and some common tasks.  We took a look and noticed that the RAM was low for today’s standards and also we could gain a large speed boost by upgrading the hard drive to a new SSD drive.

We upgraded the RAM to 8GB of DDR3 laptop style memory and cloned the hard drive over to a new 500 GB solid state drive.  While the original computer came with 4GB of RAM it’s a little low for today’s computing needs.  8GB of RAM is quickly becoming the standard for modern computers and that’s what this user needed to ensure that the computer wouldn’t be slowed down by running out of RAM when editing large files in Photoshop or even browsing the web with multiple tabs open at the same time.

The new SSD hard drive is what gives this Mac Mini it’s biggest speed boost.  Removing the old and slow mechanical drive and replacing it with a solid state hard drive makes this Mac Mini faster than it was when it was brand new.  It also reduces heat and fan noise which can be a concern on these older Mac Mini computers.

If you have a Mac, either old or new, it can probably be upgraded to make it faster or add years to an aging machine. This can save you the cost of replacing an expensive computer.

 

dead laptop hard drives
By Asheville Computer Company / DesktopLaptopRecent Work / / 0 Comments
dead laptop hard drives
dead laptop hard drives

 

dead desktop hard drives
dead desktop hard drives

We collect quite a few dead hard drives both from desktops and laptops and they need to be properly disposed of so that their data doesn’t get into the wrong hands.  We gathered up some of the recent hard drives we’ve replaced from customer systems for a quick photo shoot before destroying them.

When a hard drive is replaced we usually give the customer 30 days or so to make sure that all data was recovered before we destroy the original drive.  It’s important to give that time to ensure that all data that is recoverable is recovered and once it’s verified that the drive be destroyed beyond reasonable means of recovery.

Hard drives even when erased can still contain financial, personal and sensitive information that should not be made available to someone with physical access to the drive.

Windows 10 free upgrade ending
By Asheville Computer Company / PCWindows / / 0 Comments

If you are on Windows 7 or 8 and want the free upgrade to Windows 10 then you only have a few more months.

We recommend you make sure your computer is in great shape and ready for the upgrade before making the move. This will ensure it goes smoothly and that if problems arise we can take care of them.

Give us a call to schedule your upgrade.

 

Smart Home Gadgets Devices
By Asheville Computer Company / Recent WorkSmart Devices / / 0 Comments

We don’t only fix and upgrade computers, devices and printers.  We can also can help you make an informed purchase when it comes to smart home devices (thermostats, cameras, lights, etc.), programmable remote controls and systems or any gadget/device.

The picture in this post shows some of the devices we have setup recently including Harmony remotes, TP Link Smart Outlets and Nest WIFI cameras.

Harmony Remote Controls

The Harmony remotes can take several remote controls and condense all the functionality into one universal remote that gives you quick access to popular functions for your satellite, cable, dvd player, Roku, Apple TV, etc.

Nest WIFI cameras and thermostats

The Nest cameras give you the ability to see live video from your computer or smartphone wherever you have internet access. The Nest thermostat learns from your actions to predict the settings you will want and is also accessible from a smart phone or computer.

TP Link Smart Plug

These smart devices can control an outlet remotely from a smart phone.  This can be used to turn off a device that was left on or turn on lighting to provide security for late night arrivals.  Any device plugged into these smart switches can be controlled. We have also setup these plugs to work with the Amazon Echo and Alexa.  You can simply tell Alexa to turn off your lights!

If you have some of these smart home devices and aren’t using them, have questions about what to buy or how to use them or need some help in getting them setup then please call us today to make an appointment.

There are a ton of these devices on the market and new ones come out every day.  You don’t have to be an expert to have a smart home.  Give us a call.

CLICK ON LINKS BELOW TO FIND ON AMAZON

 

Dell Laptop Failed Hard Drive
By Asheville Computer Company / LaptopPCRecent Work / / 0 Comments

This customer brought us a newer Dell laptop that wouldn’t boot into Windows anymore and would only get a blue screen of death.  The blue screen will show you the error that caused the boot issue but will often times be cryptic or cover a wide variety of possible issues.  Through some troubleshooting we can determine if it’s a software issue caused by some corruption or a hardware issue.

In this case, the hard drive had physically failed either due to a manufacturing defect or wear and tear.  Laptops are prone to have issues with traditional spinning hard drives as the platters inside spin at a very high rate of speed (5400 or 7200 revolutions per minute).  If the laptop is dropped of moved suddenly there can be physical damage inside the hard drive that can manifest immediately or degrade the performance over time.

We replaced the old hard drive with a smaller solid state hard drive.  This should keep any physical problems from occurring in the future, as it has no moving parts.  While the ruggedness of the SSD drive is a great benefit the even greater benefit is the tremendously increase speed of the computer.  Modern computers with a solid state drive installed will boot and be ready for use in less than 30 seconds and respond immediately to any user actions, such as opening files, playing videos and editing photos.

If you have an issue with your computer that seems to be getting slower over time or you are receiving messages about potential hard drive issues please contact us today to setup an appointment.

If you aren’t having issues but want to prevent possible hard drive failure or just want a speed boost then we can help you there too.