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Tips for the Casual PC Computer User

by Paul Sanders

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Girl holding a netbook PC computer

With all of the advanced hardware features and software available for your computer, you can become an advanced user in any number of categories, from networking to online applications. Of course, there are some basics that you may want to learn, no matter what your area of interest in computers may be. Here are some PC computer basics that will leave you prepared for everyday problems and tasks.

PC Computer Tips for Everyone:

  1. Know how to choose a password. Even if you rarely go online, many PC computer programs will require you to set up passwords for your files or other software features. You may also want to set up your PC computer with multiple password-protected user profiles. Make sure your passwords are easy to remember, but not easy for others to guess. Include punctuation and numerals to help increase your password's strength.

  2. Use flash drives to transfer files. A USB flash drive is probably the simplest way to transfer files from your PC computer to other computers and devices. To use a flash drive, you'll need to know where the USB ports on your computer are located. You'll also need to know how to safely disconnect the drive from your PC computer without damaging the drive or losing data.

  3. Learn how to connect your peripherals. Your printer, keyboard, mouse and other devices all connect to your PC computer through connection ports. Find out how to identify ports by sight and where each cable connects to your PC. If you have to move your desktop PC, it will help to know where everything goes.

  4. Find your way around your operating system. Operating systems differ between PC computers. Experiment with the OS software on your desktop or laptop computer to learn how programs are organized. You might even find software extras you didn't know were included with your PC computer.

  5. Install anti-malware protection. While browsing the Web, your PC computer can run across nasty viruses and spyware. Anti-malware programs will help remove infections and protect your computer from attacks.

  6. Be able to install and remove programs. After a while, your personal computer can fill up with programs you don't use. Know how to install or uninstall programs and manage your available hard drive space.

  7. Learn how to setup your home network. Network setup is getting more automated and easier to do, but it's still a good idea to learn how your router and PC computer communicate with one another. If a problem occurs, you'll be able to fix the network settings on your PC computer instead of being locked out of your Internet connection.

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