Author Archive

Clean Computer CD Drives

Posted on May 18, 2010 by | No Comments

Whether you use a desktop, laptop or external component, CD drives all work relatively the same way. When a CD is inserted, a small lens reads the disk as it spins and send the information to another part of the computer. Apart from inserting and removing CDs, the drives work completely automatically. At times they may appear not to function, or may not be able to read or write CDs as reliably as they could before. Instead of costly replacements or repairs, there are a few ways to clean your CD drive to remove dust, dirt and other hindrances.

Things You’ll Need:
• Can of compressed air
• CD cleaning kit
• 6-inch or longer thin stick
• Thin, soft, lint-free cloth.

Step 1
Gently blow dust and dirt from the inside of the CD drive compartment using canned air. Attach the small straw-like device to the can to get better control of the air flow, then inject air into the CD drive in short bursts. Avoid using the can’s full air pressure, as this may damage the internal components.
Step 2
Clean the inside of the CD drive with a CD cleaning kit if you cannot directly reach inside. These kits generally come with a blank CD and a bottle of cleaning solution. Follow the directions that come with your specific cleaning kit. The method usually involves applying some of the solution to the disc, then inserting it into the CD drive. The disc will spin, and the solution will clean off the lens by itself.
Step 3
Clean the lens and interior using a small stick with a soft, lint-free fabric over it. Wet one end with a cleaning solution or rubbing alcohol to gently clean the lens and surrounding drive. This is much easier if you have easy access to the drive itself, such as many laptops’ designs. Do not apply much pressure to the stick, as you only need enough pressure to remove any dust and want to avoid shifting the lens. When you are finished

Raid Data Recovery

Posted on May 18, 2010 by | No Comments

An organization operating without a level of RAID (short for “redundant array of independent drives”) technology may risk data loss. In today’s business community, an organization views data as assets and establishes safeguards to protect its investment. An organization also takes proactive steps to ensure that data access is seamlessly maintained without user awareness. Therefore, RAID 5 is a popular disk drive technology for protecting data and its access.

From the inception of digital computers, organizations sought technology to store and protect data. RAID technology resulted from efforts to create large disk storage systems that utilized inexpensive small drives. The goals were to increase a computer’s storage capacity and to reduce computer response time when storing and retrieving data. The resulting technology was called RAID 0, which lacked data loss protection. Later, RAID 5 was developed to safeguard data.

RAID technology writes blocks of data to each disk drive contained in an array of drives, according to Seagate. If additional data exist after writing to the last drive in the array, writing starts over at the first drive. This wraparound process continues until the computer’s write operation is completed. This technique is called striping. Most configurations of RAID consist of combinations of RAID 0, RAID 1. Furthermore, RAID 1 duplicates data across all drives.

RAID 5 utilizes three or more disk drives to protect data contained on any one of the drives. Data is spread throughout the array of drives. Furthermore, a computer constantly executes parity checking, a calculation performed on data bits to check for data errors. Unique to RAID, parity information is also stored on each drive, according to Seagate. This facilitates reconstruction of data contained on a failed drive onto the remaining operational drives.

If a disk drive fails in a RAID environment, simply replace the failed drive while the computer system continues to access reconstructed data on the operational drives. This procedure is called a hot swap. Once a new drive is installed, RAID begins the process that reloads data and parity information onto the drive.

Additional levels of RAID exist. Review the data loss protection requirements of your organization to determine which RAID level is right for your environment. In addition, RAID 5 provides limited data loss protection. Therefore, off-site data backup storage is necessary to recover from a major disaster that destroys all disk drives.

Solid State Disk

Posted on April 22, 2010 by | No Comments

SSD stands for Solid State Drive or Solid State Disk. It is also called a flash drive, the next generation hard disk. SSD uses a special kind of memory chip with erasable, writeable cells that can hold data even when powered off. It might help to think of an SSD as the larger version of the memory stick. The external look of SSD is almost no different than a traditional hard drive. This design is to allow the SSD drive to put in a notebook or desktop computer in place of a hard drive.

SDD

SSD and USB flash drives have lot of similarities. Both use the same type of non-volatile memory chips that retain their information even when they have no power. The difference is in the form factor and capacity of the drives. While a flash drive is designed to be external to the computer system, an SSD is designed to reside inside the computer in place of a more traditional hard drive.

Comparison SSD with Traditional Hard Drive
Compared to standard hard drive, SSD device has no discs and read-write heads or a motor that spins the disc. Instead it contains an SSD device a special type of memory chips with rewritable cells that can retain data even when they are denied. SSD does not generate significant heat. It is also lighter than a standard drive, more power efficient, and completely silent. Finally, the SSD is more durable. If dropped or banged it isn’t as likely to be damaged.

SSDs are also immune to strong magnetic fields which could sanitize a hard drive.SSD Disk provides a faster access time than a hard disk, because the SSD data can be randomly accessed in the same time whatever the storage location. The SSD access time does not depend on a read/write interface head synchronising with a data sector on a rotating disk. The SSD also provides greater physical resilience to physical vibration, shock and extreme temperature fluctuations.

SSD storage medium is not magnetic (like a hard disk) or optical (like a CD) but solid state semiconductor such as battery backed RAM, EPROM or other electrically erasable RAM like chip such as flash.

Advantages of SDD
•  SDD is more reliable compared to traditional Hard Drive.
•  SSD can extend the life of a notebook battery.
•  SSD consumes less power than conventional hard drives.
•  Weight of SSD is comparatively less, that in turn decrease the weight of the notebook.
•  SSD device creates no noise.
•  Search time for an SSD device is much lower than on a hard drive.

Drawbacks of SDD
•  SDD is expensive compared to traditional Hard Drive. (The price per GB of storage capacity is significantly higher for SSD than the HDD.)
•  The SSD also has a life expectancy of erase/write cycles, after which it no longer performs reliably.
•  SSD has a significantly slower write time than a standard drive.
•  An SSD unit has an expected number of read and writes cycles. When the number of cycles at the limit, the device will function worse.

Reset your bios

Posted on April 21, 2010 by | No Comments

BIOS SettingsThere are 2 ways you can reset your bios.

1. On the motherboard there is a small watch battery. Remove this battery along with the power cable from the power supply. Hold down the power button to fully discharge the system. Wait 2-3 minutes then reinstall the battery and plug in your system. Your reset is now complete

2. Some motherboards have a 3 pin jumper by the battery. Lets say that the jumper is on pins 2 and 3. Remove the jumper while the machine is OFF and place onto pins 1 and 2. Power on your machine for a minute. (Note: Your system will not POST). Shutdown your machine and put the jumper back to pins 2 and 3. Your reset is now complete

This is a great troubleshooting step for those of you having POST issues or no POSTing at all. Like other troubleshooting steps, this will not always work but usually will depending on the problem

Laptops have become a necessity in many business settings. With laptop we all spends more time than ever outside the office, as employees work at home or in the nearest Starbucks. We all carry our laptops while travelling on business trips and vacations, but fail to realize that thousands of laptops are being stolen each week. All our sensitive information like credit cards, bank account numbers can be easily taken from a stolen laptop. So protect our laptop is our duty, list below some ways to prevent your laptop from being stolen

protect your laptop1. Get a cable lock. Almost all laptops come equipped with a Universal Security Slot that allows you to attach the laptop to a heavy or unbreakable object. Cables cost less than $50 and can be found in any technology supply store. Use it in places like hotel rooms, conference rooms, airport waiting areas, and libraries.

2. If you have a lot of visitors, contractors, or housekeeping staff coming through your office, locking your laptop into a docking station is a good idea.

3. Lock the laptop in a filing cabinet or other secure, out-of-sight location when you leave the office.

4. When traveling with your laptop, don’t carry it in a computer case. This makes you an obvious target for laptop thieves. Get a padded sleeve and carry your laptop in a regular briefcase or a backpack instead.

5. Be especially cautious in airports. Don’t put your laptop down or let it out of your sight through security checkpoints.

Laptop BatteryLaptops tend to lose their charm quickly when you’re constantly looking for the nearest power outlet to charge up. How do you keep your battery going for as long as possible? Take these steps to make your battery last longer.

1. Defrag regularly – The faster your hard drive does its work – less demand you are going to put on the hard drive and your battery. Make your hard drive as efficient as possible by defragging it regularly. (but not while it’s on battery of course!) Mac OSX is better built to handle fragmentation so it may not be very applicable for Apple systems.

2. Dim your screen – Most laptops come with the ability to dim your laptop screen. Some even come with ways to modify CPU and cooling performance. Cut them down to the lowest level you can tolerate to squeeze out some extra battery juice.

3. Cut down on programs running in the background. Itunes, Desktop Search, etc. All these add to the CPU load and cut down battery life. Close down unnecessary programs. You can do this by clicking on the programs in the task bar, by right clicking on the program, and selecting “Close” or by hitting “CTRL+ALT+DEL” and ending unnecessary tasks.Shut down everything that isn’t crucial when you’re on battery.

4. Cut down external devices – USB devices (including your mouse) & WiFi drain down your laptop battery. Remove or shut them down when not in use. It goes without saying that charging other devices (like your iPod) with your laptop when on battery is a surefire way of quickly wiping out the charge on your laptop battery.

5. Add more RAM – This will allow you to process more with the memory your laptop has, rather than relying on virtual memory. Virtual memory results in hard drive use, and is much less power efficient. Note that adding more RAM will consume more energy, so this is most applicable if you do need to run memory intensive programs which actually require heavy usage of virtual memory.

Fix Laptop Overheating Issues

Posted on March 23, 2010 by | No Comments

Laptop Fan

Laptop Fan which reduces the heat inside the laptop

The overheating of laptops is mainly due to its compact size and lack of ventilation.
A noisy cooling fan that runs continuously is one sign that your laptop is overheating.
The result of laptop overheating are performance loss, system crashes and damage to
motherboard or any other components. To avod this make sure laptop ventilation are not
covered and keep it in a cool place as possible.

Follow these to avoid laptop overheating:

1. Always place your laptop on a flat surface like desktop. If you use it on your lap make sure the ventilations are not blocked by your clothes. Blocked vents will increase the heat the laptop. Try not to place the laptop on sofas or bed. Laptops left on a surface that holds the heat in can be permanently damaged.

2. Clean the cooling fan exhaust system which is located on the side or back of the case. A clogged cooling fan vent keeps hot air trapped inside the case. 

3.A commercial laptop cooler will extend the life of your laptop.This is an external USB powered fan
that is placed below the laptop and serve as a base for the laptop.

4.Check your BIOS settings.In most laptops, fan speed, CPU temperature alarms etc can be adjusted through BIOS settings.Do this only after checking the users manual.

Laptop Fan with Dust Covered

Laptop Fan covered with dust, this increases the heat inside the laptop

Laptop Vents Covered with dust

Laptop Vents Covered with dust, this create more heat inside laptops.

Cleaning Laptop Keyboard

Posted on March 23, 2010 by | No Comments

Like almost everything else on a laptop, a keyboard is also different from the standard computer keyboard. With many laptop keyboards the keys cannot be completely removed. Therefore, we suggest cleaning the keyboard by using the same damp cloth you used to clean the exterior case of the laptop. In addition, compressed air can be used to spray any dust, dirt, or hair from in-between the keys.

Make sure laptop is unplugged and powered off. Also, remove the mouse, any discs or CDs, USB drives and anything else that is connected with your laptop

Don’t use the cleaning liquid directly on your laptop parts

Cleaning Laptop Touch pad

Posted on March 23, 2010 by | No Comments

Cleaning Laptop Touchpad

Cleaning Laptop Touchpad

Cleaning the laptop touchpad can help to improve the look of the laptop and also
will help to improve the responsiveness of the touchpad.

Before start cleaning the touchpad its safe to unplug the laptop from power before cleaning to avoid any electric shock for you.

Clean the touchpad with a neat cloth that has been very lightly dampened with clean distilled water.
Be careful not even a single drop of liquid get into any openings. Don’t use any paper towels or
tissues to clean the touchpad.

Cleaning the inside of a laptop computer can be a difficult task. However, in some situations, it may be necessary because of excessive dust and/or dirt buildup within the computer, such as on the processor’s heatsink.

Unfortunately, however, because of the complexity often involved in disassembling the laptop to reach many of these areas, Computer Hope cannot provide this information online for every laptop ever made. If you believe after cleaning your computer that it is still overheating because of dust and/or dirt buildup, we suggest taking the laptop to an authorized repair center.