At On-Site Louisville Computer Repair Co. I often get asked to set up new computers for people. This is a good idea since there is much involved in the process. Nevertheless, there are many people that like to do things themselves, so I wrote this article for you “Do-it-yourselfers” which covers the process. Hope this helps.
Get Your Files off Your Old Machine
If you have files and folders on your old machine you need to put them on a portable storage device, a flash drive, and then move them to your new machine after you set your computer up… I would leave a copy of the files on the flash drive and that is your back-up should you experience a catastrophic machine failure in the future.
Plug In, Go Through Set-up Menu and Run Your Updates:
When you turn your new computer on you will be prompted to choose settings for the computer name, time zone, language, network, updates, etc. This is very intuitive — just fill in the blanks. This is also a good time to register the computer and software. Then you are ready to run updates. Since your machine has been sitting on a warehouse or retailer’s shelf for a while you will have updates due at the time of purchase.
Uninstall Bloatware and Activate Antivirus Software Suite
Bloatware is the software that will come preloaded with your brand new laptop or desktop in the form of 30 day trials or trail subscriptions or other junk. While this software may not be harmful (debatable) most of the times they are just a waste of space. To remove simply go to Control Panel > Add/Remove> Uninstall. If your machine has a one year subscription to an antivirus suite you can activate that at this point. Otherwise you can uninstall the 30 day antivirus trial and read my article on “Five Free Antivirus Suites You Can Try for Zilch.”
Creating a System Restore Disk
You can create a restore disk in case something happens and you need to restore your computer to its factory state. Since most computers come with a recovery partition that allows you to recover your computer to factory state, making is disks is optional; however, there are circumstance where the recovery manager will not function normally, such as destruction of the partition by a virus infections, etc. Therefore many people still choose to create disks in case of emergency. To do this:
♦Go to start menu.
♦In the search bar, type “backup”.
♦Click on the “backup and Restore” option.
♦On the left side of the panel, you will see an option “create a system repair disc”.
♦Click on the option and follow the process.
Configure Power Options:
Familiarize yourself with the power settings and options available in your computer. In Windows Vista and 7 just go to start and search for “Power Options.” You can configure all your power options here including when the screen turns off, when or if the computer sleeps, what happens when you close the lid and what the power button does.
Choose Your Home Page and Make Bookmarks
When you get on the internet with Internet Explorer you probably want the page that comes up to be your favorite search engine, or your Email Login Page (which are often the same place). Most people set their homepage to Google, Yahoo, or Bing. In your browser window go to Tools>Internet Options> and then set your home page to the preferred URL. This is also a good time to visit your Bank Website, Favorite Shopping Site, and other places you visit on a regular basis and add those websites to your favorites, favorite’s toolbar, or bookmarks.
Transfer Your Files From Your Old Machine
Remember the files we pulled off your old machine earlier? Now is a good time insert your flash drive and drag old documents, photos, and music to your new computer. Plug in the flash drive and wait for it to populate “Computer” screen. Then drag a copy of your files, photos and music to the appropriate folder on your new machine and get back to computing as usual on your new computer!