Following are some commonly asked questions and answers regarding home computing.
Q. What’s a “browser” and do I want more than one?
A. A browser is the software program you use to access the Internet. There are several popular browsers available, including Microsoft Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Apple Safari and Mozilla Firefox. Some people prefer to use one browser over another; however, not all websites are compatible with all browsers.
Q. Why is my computer slow?
A. There are lots of reasons why a computer can run slowly or why the performance degrades over time. The best bet is to have a computer technician evaluate your computer and recommend the best way to enhance performance.
Q. How do I protect my computer against viruses?
A. Viruses are programs that are loaded on your computer that display undesired behavior — browser pop-ups, deleted files, incessant messages, etc. There’s no 100 percent effective way to avoid viruses (unless you never connect your computer to the Internet), but you can protect against them by doing the following things:
Load an anti-virus program on your computer. There are multiple free and subscription-based anti-virus programs to choose from.
Avoid clicking links or opening attachments in email messages from senders you don’t know or, for senders you do know, use discernment regarding whether the content of the message is legitimate. Sometimes an email message can look like it’s from someone you know, but it’s really not!
If you do notice any strange behavior, it’s best to turn off the computer and have a computer technician evaluate it to determine the appropriate fix.
Have you ever had trouble finding the specific menu item or function that you’re looking for when using Windows and other Microsoft products (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc)?
There are lots of keyboard shortcuts for commonly performed functions. Once you learn the keyboard shortcuts, you can save lots of time. Here are some of our favorites:
F1 — Display help
F2 — Rename the selected item
Ctrl+C — Copy the selected item
Ctrl+X — Cut the selected item
Ctrl+V — Paste the selected item
Ctrl+Z — Undo an action
Ctrl+Y — Redo an action
You can find lots more (Microsoft specific) at Microsoft.com, search “keyboard shortcuts.”
Karla Harker is director of information technology for the Incline Village General Improvement District.