Tuesday, February 14, 2017



It's Patch Tuesday, Valentine's Day, and a great day to make your computer safer to run. Maybe even speed it up and *gasp* protect anything you don't want to lose by backing it up!

Microsoft releases updates (patches) all the time, but the second Tuesday of the month brings the majority of them to us. Windows 10 will download and install the updates automatically, and you don't have much to say about that. I'm finding out that's probably a good thing, if the alternative is not installing the updates at all. Windows 8.1 gives you a bit more control, and Windows 7 leaves you mainly on your own - or at least makes you work harder for the updates.

Why do you want them? It's not all for the flashy new enhancements - it's to keep your computer safer from malware, hackers and scammers by fixing newly-discovered security problems. Yes, you do want them. Yes, sometimes an update is not quite right and some fixing needs to happen. So what - at least most of the time your computer, your data and your identity are safer with the latest updates than without. 

Which updates? All of them. Windows, Office, Adobe , Java, CCleaner, iTunes, LibreOffice, OpenOffice, Mozilla products, Google products, QuickBooks, Quicken and any other software that may have been installed since your computer was new will put out updates. 

How? Aside from the Microsoft updates, each app or program will have its own way of installing updates. Many times you can simply open the program, then click Help - Check for updates or About. If you have the Ninite Updater - and you do if I've worked on your computer either hands-on or via remote - it's a very simple process to run it and be done with it. Otherwise, depending on the operating system on your computer and the application itself, you may need to go out to find, download and install the updates. **DANGER ZONE** Searching for updates via Google, Yahoo or other search engines can land you in very bad territory. If you don't know where to go to find the update you need please ask someone who does know. Ask here, ask on Facebook, ask a savvy friend or relative - just beware of following advice after Googling it!

It's time to update my step-by-step recommendations for regular updates and maintenance, and you'll find that in the next post. In the meantime, let the Windows updates install and restart your computer when prompted. Run Ninite if you have it, and check your backup system - external drive, online service such as Carbonite, or something you've devised yourself. 

Ask if you have questions! I'd rather prevent a problem than fix one. 
Text, Facebook message, email or call anytime. 

Cathy Contant   cathy@cathycom.com   315-573-4905

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