If you ever think you will need more than 4GB of RAM (The answer for most small business people is “yes”), then upgrade to the 64 bit version, otherwise the 32 bit version should do fine.
Vista to System 7 Limited Time Offer $99.00
1. Run Microsoft Upgrade advisor
2. Run Scan Disk
3. Defragment disk if necessary
4. Migrate all Applications (e.g. Office, QuickBooks, ACT!, etc.), Internet Explorer Favorites, My Documents Files, Desktop & Printers
5. We will check to ensure Internet access, file access, email send and receive.
XP to System 7 Limited Time Offer $349.00
1. Run Microsoft Upgrade advisor
2. Back up “Image” of Computer
3. Migrate Favorites, My Documents Files, Desktop & Printers
4. Reinstall Microsoft Office, Antivirus, Antispyware and up to 2 applications, (e.g. QuickBooks, ACT!, etc.)
5. We will check to ensure internet access, file access, email send and receive.
We highly recommend that users have at least 2GB of RAM and at least 50GB free on your hard drive. Your video card should have at least 256MB of memory. For optimum performance 4GB+ of RAM is recommended and 512MB+ Video
User must supply Disks and Keys for all applications including System 7
Please make an appointment (678-353-3222 Option 1) to drop your computer off with us for 24 hours
This offer is good through 3/1/2010
Your Dedicated IT Department
Support: 678-353-3222 Option 1
A lot of people are asking me about Microsoft Windows System 7, the replacement, or upgrade to Windows Vista and Windows XP. Let me start by saying that I LOVE this operating system. It is the best upgrade Microsoft has done in a long time. I’ve read the press and there is a lot of positive news out there, and of course some grumbling, although a lot of that is “why didn’t you do it sooner” type stuff.
We have converted a good chunk of our computers internally at our small business to Windows System 7 and our goal is to be running System 7 on all production desktops within 2-3 months.
The issues we encountered with Vista, mostly Driver related, are almost nonexistent with 7.
Drivers are what make your printer actually print something when you ask it too, they let your iPod successfully attach to your computer, they allow your mouse to work, your keyboard and Hard drive to function and a huge number of other things to take place on your computer at any time. There are Hardware Drivers and there are Software Drivers. If you have no Driver, the wrong Driver or a broken Driver you get stuck and can’t do much. When it only affects one or two ancillary items on your system, it’s not such a big deal, but if your monitor is not working… well there isn’t much you can accomplish.
Let’s face it the PC revolution is all about productivity and Vista, although a really good step in the right direction, especially when you looked at the interface, lacked a number of important drivers. Who builds Drivers? Drivers are mostly built by the manufacturers of the products that are inside or attached to your PC, for example HP would create the Drivers for their printers, Western Digital would create the Drivers for their hard drives, etc., etc., you get the idea.
So why is Windows System 7 so great? They took all the really cool stuff from Vista AND they fixed the Driver situation so now the operating system/computer goes out and gets most of the Drivers for you. Additionally, Microsoft did an awesome job of getting the companies that make the Drivers for their products to actually make Drivers for Windows System 7.
I should also add that they made some upgrades to AERO that really enhance the desktop viewing experience. For example, just by hovering over an icon in the Task Bar (Bottom of the window) Aero shows me all the open windows associated with it, and if I move my cursor over the list, it temporarily hides all windows from view except the one I stop over. If you’re like me and you have dozens of windows open on your windows desktop, this s a real productivity booster!
What I would like you to do is go to the site and run the compatibility checker and see if your system can run Windows System 7
The compatibility checker will look at Hardware and Software and tell you what Drivers you will need, and if there are any special circumstances regarding them (e.g. where to find, etc.). Windows System 7 likes RAM (I recommend 4 GB) and it likes newer Video cards with at least 512KB onboard RAM. Don’t skimp on the Hard drive, go 180GB minimum, preferably 250GB or 500GB. Faster RPM’s on the Hard Drive are a good investment to get things rocking. If you are adding a video card, go for one that will handle dual or triple monitors, once you try it, you will never want to go back.
If you are a small business (if you have between 5 and 50 computers) in the Atlanta Metro Area, we would be happy to help you run this on your systems, just give me a call 678-353-3222 x105.
Don’t miss out on this part of the Technology revolution Windows System 7 is awesome!
Your Dedicated IT Department
Support: 678-353-3222 Option 1
Computer issues? Please send email to: HELP@sf-it.com
|Do you BING? Version 2|
|You may recall in August I committed to use BING instead of Google for 30 days. Well 30 days has come and gone and I still use BING for 95% of my online searches. Some reasons are obvious, some more subtle. For example, if I search for video on a certain subject, just by moving my mouse across the video thumbnail on the results page the video and audio begin to play. I really like this because you don’t have to make the leap to a different site like YouTube, and the preview factor is great. My friend likes the fact that searches don’t return a lot of extra results you don’t care about (Along the lines of the TV commercials you see from Microsoft).No doubt that Google is close on the heels of any advance Microsoft may bring to the table. This will be a long drawn out battle of feature by feature increments. This is good for us (the users) because we get much better products. I have a huge amount of faith in Microsoft as they have won this war before (remember Lotus 1-2-3 and WordPerfect?). Today, the pace is much faster because of the online nature of the search engine.I have tried the shopping and travel features as well and found it very interesting I could compare sites very easily.
Do you BING? Give it a try for 30 days and let me know what you think Mikego@sf-it.com
A number of years ago I worked in the Fortune 500, at companies like Microsoft, Oracle and General Electric. One of the things I noticed was that these companies hired and invested in smart people.
I’ve noticed the same thing about small businesses (for our discussion here, companies with less than 50 employees) as well, lots of smart people!
The question is how do you get smart people to be productive? The answer is to give them the tools necessary to do their jobs quickly and efficiently. Technology is the true driver of efficiency (and by that I mean revenue and profits) in any business, but it makes a huge difference in small business especially if your company is partially or totally made up of Knowledge Workers. Examples of Knowledge Workers include Doctors, Dentists, Lawyers, Architects, Realtors, Accountants, anyone in Management, Administration or Finance, Small Business Owners and others. You’ll note that I called out Small Business Owners. Even though you may manufacture things like Wedding Cakes, Chocolates, whatever, Small Business owners do a lot of Knowledge Work that takes up a good portion of everyday, Sales, Marketing, Finance; all of these roles are filled by Knowledge Workers.
The term Knowledge Worker has been around for a while and we tend to throw it around without too much thought. The fact is that knowledge work is a competitive advantage for the U.S. No other country in the world has the resources and ability that we have, especially when we put our mind to something. If you think about this a little bit, you’ll come up with tons of examples, but the moon landing, our technology lead in the world as well as thousands of other examples makes us number one. Don’t let the current economic news throw you off course. Our Automobile, Construction, Financial and Medical industries are not about to go away.
So how can Knowledge Workers be most efficient? Give them the right tools, running on good systems and let them do what they do best.
The better serviced your company’s computer systems are, the more efficient and productive both you and your employees will be.
In a downturn, the companies that do the best job of realizing efficiencies from their systems, are the ones who are well positioned for the turnaround (which always comes, I promise). The companies, who think they are going to save a few bucks now, by putting this off, doing it themselves or having the kid down the street fix their systems, are in for a rude awakening. Your competitors are hiring people like us and I can assure you that we will do whatever it takes to keep our clients alive and well, as they are our life blood (think about it, no clients, no business) so we have a vested interest in doing everything we can for them to help them leverage technology to get the most out of it.
The bottom line is that NOW is the time to invest in your computer systems, to take advantage when the turnaround comes.
“Why doesn’t my computer work today when it was just fine yesterday”? This is a question we get weekly, if not daily at our Help Desk. It’s a question people ask me when I am out and about, in both social and business situations. We are used to things working correctly, day in and day out. Usually the car or dishwasher will start complaining loudly when something goes wrong, but it’s very frustrating to have your computer working fine one day and stopped in its tracks the next.
There is an easy fix for this but I would consider it temporary at best. However, this fix could easily save you from missing a deadline or losing a very important client.
We have found that most of the time, computer systems stop functioning (or more likely parts of a system) because the software on the computer has been patched, or updated.
What is a patch or update, you might ask. A few years ago, before the Internet was so pervasive, you would buy a computer and the software to go with it and it rarely was updated. That’s because most systems were not connected to the internet, had very slow dial-up connections or they were protected behind corporate firewalls. The rise of the Internet and fast connections changed all that.
Today systems have fast connections and are attached most of the time to the internet. All computers are susceptible computer virus or malware. To stop the spread of virus’ software companies regularly patch or update their software. Why they have to patch is a subject for another day but suffice it to say that the little box you work in every day has a complexity inside it that makes even people in the know step back in awe. Microsoft Windows XP alone has in excess of 77 million lines of computer code, some of it dating back to the early 1980′s.
So what is causing the problem? What most likely is happening when a system is not running properly after running well previously is that the system has updated or patched itself, and you are getting a conflict of some type.
To fix it temporarily, as the system is beginning to boot up, you can press the F8 key repeatedly during this process and it will take you to a black and white screen that will have several choices, pick “LAST KNOWN GOOD CONFIGURATION” this will reset your drivers and software back a day or so that the system will again work okay. Kudos to the engineers at Microsoft who came up with this idea and then included it in all versions of Windows.
CAUTION: There are some caveats with this procedure, clearly you are stepping back in time and removing some update that is important for your system, so you will need to get it checked out and then proceed as usual. As we learned from movies such as “Back to the Future” time travel has both its good and bad sides. Also we can only go back in time not forward, so use with caution.
When we apply patches to computers we run the patches through a series of tests to ensure the least amount of disruption to your systems. Enjoy the spring and daylight savings time and happy computing!
Most cars today are built with a degree of technology that lets you know if something under the hood isn’t quite right. You can get any number of lights and sounds to warn you of impending problems or remind you to do something. In the old days (1970′s) we called them idiot lights, today however, I like to call them Indicator lights because of the technology that is behind them.
Wouldn’t it be great if we had these lights and warnings for our PC’s and Servers? In some sense we do but they are not as “in your face” as a gong and bright red light on your dashboard. Normally they sit in your system tray in the lower right hand corner of your screen. Unfortunately, they tend to get crowded out of view and don’t always give you good information (i.e. is something really wrong, or is someone trying to sell me something?)
One of the things we do for people is monitor all of these “Indicator lights”, from desktops to servers, we watch AntiVirus, AntiSpyware, Updates/Patching, Error Log Files, Daily backup execution and a host of other indicators to make sure your systems are running in top form on a continuous basis.
“Why is this important” you may ask. If you are a business person, focused on delivering the best to your customers and prospects, while keeping everything running smoothly, then you don’t want to be worried about whether your server is going to go down (it will, eventually) or that you have huge holes in your firewall.
This month I am offering our business readers in the Atlanta area the opportunity to get a BackUp and Disaster Recovery assessment for a nominal fee, $1.00 (Yes, one dollar). Normally we charge up to $1,000 for this service, so act quickly, we only have room for four Backup & Disaster Recovery assessments on the schedule in April.
Okay, maybe it’s about Twittering away your time on useless stuff, but people probably said that about using computers years ago, and we know where that has gone. I am giving Twitter a chance, I think it’s an interesting use of technology @Mikego427 . David Pogue says it best: