Some people spend thousands of dollars each year to keep their computers up-to-date. Given all of the money they spend on this maintenance, you’d think their computers worked flawlessly.
But, sadly, all computers are flawed. And this problem isn’t going away any time soon.
Which just leaves you with one question:
What are you supposed to do when things go haywire? If even all of your money can’t keep your computer in check, what are you to do?
Here’s a list of ten computer troubleshooting tips you should try before sending your computer off to a repair shop:
1. Test the Computer’s Wi-Fi Connection
Let’s start with a simple (yet common) fix. Wi-Fi connectivity issues are common, so this solution should be one of the first ones you try.
Testing your computer’s Wi-Fi connection is simple and should only take a minute. Most computers already have a built-in connectivity tool, so all you have to do is find the tool and run it.
2. Run a Virus Scan
If you’ve tested your computer’s internet connection and things are still wonky, try running a virus scan. Viruses can get the better of your computer and cost you tons of money in repairs.
Some computers come with programs which are designed to protect them from viruses and malware. If your computer came with one of these programs, run it and see what the scan reveals.
Those of you who don’t have anti-virus software installed on your computers should download an anti-virus program immediately. There are several effective free programs available.
Of course, the paid versions of these programs provide more utility.
3. Check Your Cables or Router
We often assume that the problems we’re having with our computers are internal. Sometimes, however, the problems are external.
That said, go take a look at your computer’s cables.
Do any of them have shorts in them? Are they plugged into the correct ports?
You should also have a look at your router if you’re having problems with your internet. In some cases, you can solve your connectivity issues by simply resetting the router.
4. Restart the Program or Computer
So you’ve tested your internet connection, run an anti-virus scan, and looked at your cables. And you’re still having issues with your computer.
If the problems you’re encountering are specific to a certain program, close the program and restart it. Doing this often addresses hiccups.
If your entire computer’s system is going haywire, shut down the computer and turn it back on.
In order to solve any problems that persist after you’ve done this, you’ll have to start digging deeper…
5. Browse the Internet for a Solution
The first step to diving deeper into the problems which plague your computer is browsing the internet for a solution.
Start by asking questions that are specific to your situation. And don’t feed the search engine vague queries such as:
- “What is wrong with my computer?”
- “How to troubleshoot a computer”
Instead, try providing the search engine with specific program names and error codes. Once you’ve uncovered a bit of information, you should be able to narrow your search.
6. Try to Isolate the Problem
Speaking of narrowing your search: Why don’t you try isolating the problem?
Yes, this method can take longer than some of the methods listed here. But it has a huge benefit:
Isolating the problem ensures that you only tamper with the problematic files. Not with your healthy files.
So how do you isolate the problem?
Begin by recognizing when the problems you’re facing start? Do they start when you open a certain program? How about when you press a certain key?
Once you find the trigger, you’ll be able to dive deeper to determine what exactly is giving you trouble.
7. Uninstall Old Applications
We get it. Every application on your computer is dear to you.
You can’t delete those RPGs because you might want to play them in a year. You never use those three additional browsers because Google Chrome is so reliable, but they’re nice to have.
But let’s get real:
Those applications take up space on your computer. And if your computer is burdened by tens or hundreds of unused apps, it won’t run as efficiently.
Which brings us to our next point…
8. Check for Outdated Software
If an app has been sitting untouched on your computer’s desktop for three years, it’s probably outdated. So when you finally click on it again?
Things could go south fast.
Don’t, however, assume that your newer programs are up-to-date. Companies roll out new updates frequently. As a result, a program you downloaded two days ago could be outdated today.
And your apps aren’t the only thing you should be keeping updated. The plugins you rely on when using your browser can also cause problems.
9. Update Your Drivers and Check Them for Compatibility Issues
Before we go any further, we have some advice for you:
If you don’t know anything about drivers or your operating systems, you should consult with an IT service provider before attempting this tip or the next one. You can seriously mess up your system or lose important files if you don’t know what you’re doing.
In any case, if you’ve done everything that precedes this tip, it’s probably time to start looking at your drivers. Outdated drivers can make your system run more slowly and pose some security risks to you.
To find updated drivers for your device, you can visit the websites of each drivers’ manufacturer and download the drivers for installation.
10. Do a Clean Install of Your Operating System
This tip should only be used as an absolute last resort. Because if you do a clean install of your operating system, you could lose all of your program files and media.
Having said that, the unfortunate truth is that sometimes there’s no other option. Clean installations are the only thing that work for some people.
Luckily, you can save most (if not all) of your files by keeping a backup. After you’ve completed the clean installation, you can just transfer the files over.
But before you try this tip, please find a professional who might be able to help you avoid doing this. There are many companies you can choose from, but we have one we’d recommend.
You can find out more about that company by taking a look at this website.
Need Help with Your Computer Troubleshooting?
Those of you who tried all ten of these tips yourself and are still in need of help with your computer troubleshooting should contact a professional.
You can also contact us to ask questions and get recommendations on how to proceed. We’ll get back to you as soon as possible.