Brand new

  JaneAtt 22:01 09 Mar 2004

I am brand new to this and completely befuddled by how complex it seems. I thought I would buy a computer, turn it on and off and that would be it!

I have had 3 viruses (I assume that's what they were) which resulted in me losing everything that was on the computer and I had to take it back to be rebooted(?).

So now I need some very simple advice about how to stay safe.

I have Norton anti virus.

1. Do I need a firewall - what is it anyway?
2. Do I need anything else?
3. What should I be doing regularly? How often?
4. Should I buy a magazine? If so, which one?
5. Should I download System Mechanic which has just appeared in my email - if so what will it do?
Help would be very welcome (in simple words!)

  Jester2K 22:05 09 Mar 2004

1. No you don't NEED one but you an get one later. Sygate is Free click here

Its like a bouncer for your PC. Nothing gets in or out without you knowing and giving permission.

2. Not really.

3. Windows Update & Defrag

4. YES. PC Advisor of course.

5. NO.

Remember if you have any questions then you can always ask us.

If you think you need to BUY software then ask us- we can usually suggest a freeware alternative that does the job just as good.

If you are not sure of any of the above - ask.

  VoG II 22:09 09 Mar 2004

2. Yes you most definitely need anti-virus! Whichever you get you *must* keep it up to date - AVG is highly recommended and free click here

  woodchip 22:10 09 Mar 2004

Free ZoneAlarm Firewall click here

Norton should be OK but set it to update the virus files definitions Automatic in the program so when you connect to the net it look for new files first

Ad-Aware to remove Spyware tool free click here

Spybot free cleaning tool click here

  Djohn 22:14 09 Mar 2004

JaneAtt. Welcome to the forum. Hope you have lots of simple questions to ask then I might get a chance to answer some for you ;o)

  woodchip 22:16 09 Mar 2004

Have we answerd them all then

  Djohn 22:45 09 Mar 2004

Hi woodchip. Yep! Usually by the time I get to answer a question that I think I know the answer to, someone has beat me to it. :o(

  frazky 04:50 10 Mar 2004

there must be a thread with basic '10 commandments' for newbies here... if not someone should write one and keep it near the top.

e.g.(off the cuff):

1.'dont open attachments'or even 'dont go online' unless you have a properly installed antivirus.'
2.create a'windows boot disc'to help reinstall/repair the os.
3.backup you virgin OS in some manner.
4. write down your OS registration details.
5.write down your dailup/pop email details.
6. backup your registry..and know how to restore it-do a dummy run./ do a dummy run of 'go-back'[ depending on your win version]
7.familiarise yourself with defraging/scandisk/sfc if relevent... maintenance tasks
8.consider installing anti-spyware and anti-hijack ware.
9.Consider installing junk cleanup utils..or know how to set you o.s. to do this.

(I'm still on win98 - maybe someone can do one for XP.)

  frazky 04:54 10 Mar 2004

10. dont install too many utils at once - keep a spare partitionmagic copy to experiment on rather.

  frazky 04:55 10 Mar 2004

11. firewall ( esp. for fixed ip)


  frazky 21:10 10 Mar 2004

12. don't give your email address to anyone who's PC is not protected or any unreliable not sign web pages with your main email address - use an ancillary address or a spamgourmet address...or munge you address and use a signature to allow reply.

This thread is now locked and can not be replied to.

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