Common Computer Fixes
When something goes wrong, it’s natural to want to ask for help from someone you feel is an expert especially when it comes to computers and software programs. However, there are a few simple tricks for fixing some problems that anyone can do. Below, I’ll go over how to do each one and why they can make a difference.
1. Restart your computer
Sometimes the best fix is to turn your computer off and then turn it back on. Sometimes it is helpful to leave your computer off for 10+ minutes or even over night to completely refresh your computer. When computers haven’t been restarted in a long time, sometimes they start to act oddly: programs are slow, pages freeze, clicking on something doesn’t work, etc. Restarting your computer clears out everything in your trash and all your programs by default have to be reloaded. This can fix a lot of issues. You may also want to reboot your DSL and/or router boxes as well.
2. Clear your browser cache
Your browser cache is a folder on your computer that keeps copies of pages (images, text, etc.) you’ve already visited online. If you go back to an already visited page, instead of having to download the page again, your computer will draw it from your cache. This makes your page display faster.
As your cache grows with more and more saved items, it may start slowing down your browser. In other cases, you may want to see a newer version of a page, but your computer keeps drawing the page it saved instead.
From time to time, delete everything in your browser cache (this is also called “emptying your cache” or “clearing your cache”). Depending on your browser and version, the instructions vary. Go to http://www.thismachine.info to find out what browser you’re on. Next, do a search on Google for “clear browser cache” plus your browser and version number.
2. Delete your cookies
A cookie is a small file that saves information like your login, so as you navigate your website, you don’t have to log into every page. Without a cookie, your computer wouldn’t be able to remember any information you might want to carry forward to other pages.
Why would you want to delete your cookies? Sometimes cookies become corrupted and cause problems with login or other actions, so they need to be deleted. Corruption can happen when your computer is trying to save a cookie file, but your browser crashes (e.g. Internet Explorer stops working suddenly), you lose your internet connection or for many other reasons. Don’t worry, it’s not a big deal and you can fix the problem.
How you delete your cookies depends on which browser and version you’re on (e.g. Internet Explorer 7.0). To find out which one you’re on, go to http://www.thismachine.info. Next, do a search on Google for “delete cookies” and your browser and version number.
4. Be sure everything is up to date.
Your computer should have regular updates sent to you that need to be installed. Also your browsers and some programs commonly used must be updated when notices are sent to insure they continue to work correctly. Typically you will also need to restart your computer after any updates for them to work properly.
5. When in doubt, Google the problem!
There's always hundreds of others who have had the same problem as you and researched answers in numerous forums on the internet. We've always been able to find the solution to any of our computer problems (and then some) on Google.
These tips have helped us solve many intermittent computer problems and also maintain good computer efficiency so we wanted to pass them on to you.
Information compiled by Citymax.com, our webserver.