Computer "What If... ?" and "Should I... ?"

Should I install Windows 7 on my current computer or buy a new system?

The answer depends on how old your system is, what type of hardware you have and in some cases whether you have Windows XP or Windows Vista on your current computer. 

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What is a backup and why do I want to bother with it?

People who have not experienced a hard drive failure may not grasp its significance. Hard disks can abruptly fail, although in many cases there are a few hours of warning in the form of additional new noises or failure to access a portion of the disk. When a drive fails, everything on it is just plain gone!

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How should I back up my data (pictures, music, documents, etc.)?

It all depends on the size of the data. Documents, address books and internet favorites are generally small, but there are exceptions of course. Music libraries, photo collections, and digital video usually demand hi-capacity media such as an inexpensive external USB hard drive, while smaller files can be saved to the internet or burned to CDs for short-term backup.

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Why do hard drives crash and how long will mine last?

Hard drives are guaranteed by the manufacturer usually between three and five years. They will give you a new one, empty of all your precious stuff, if yours goes bad in that time frame. Professional data centers replace hard drives on a regular and preventive basis after a few short years. Yes, we all know of people whose computers have worked flawlessly for over a decade, but who would want to use a computer that old anyway? Treated properly, a hard disk will probably outlive the useful life of its computer. If it is treated gently and kept cool enough, this is the most likely scenario. Your data should be backed up just in case of any problems to prevent any catastrophic loss, of course.

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Your Tech Guys


Adam Olsen
(310) 466-8969
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Jeremy Jones
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