I remember the days of the dial-up Internet connection. No one ever had to wait more than ten seconds to log onto a web site. It was amazing! The time savings were invaluable. No one had to wait for a page to load fully. We could get on a web site directly from our computer. Check out my site warrenewatch.com. It still holds up well today! Testing new versions of operating systems were never part of my daily routine.
The evolution of the Internet in time
In the time of dial-up, it was easy to assume that spyware and viruses were the only causes of a slow down. In many cases, it was. But new technologies have come into play, such as uploading to the Internet, peer to peer sharing, dynamic content such as videos, and audio downloads. Many types of malware can get on a computer and either harm it, slow it down, or ruin your data.
Today, with broadband Internet connection speeds so slow, I regularly have the feeling that something is not right. But I’m not a diagnostic computer crank who diagnoses what ails my computer. I’m a computer whiz who fixes computers. I’m a Microsoft Certified technology expert and a Thanh tester. I make my living helping other people by fixing their computers.
When I teach high school computer science classes, I instruct Cutting Edge Technologies and subscribe to various technical magazines. I’m not an administrator on the server end of things, but I do manage servers. I’m responsible for anti-virus protection and data backup. I make sure my department computers are always protected with the latest anti-virus software. I run our IT support and online business, and when I got sick last year, I had to cut my hours down to just five hours a month. If we don’t stay on top of viruses and malware, we’re always one step behind the spread of this Pretty Good Privacy (PGP) ware that makes your computer vulnerable to these downloads.
Let me set the record straight. I’m not making a negative review. All antivirus services have their pros and cons. But you need to ask the companies that you’re working with what their ups and downs are. I’m a big fan of Norton Internet Security. I go to https://www.norton.com to check out the latest versions of their software. I especially like the Home Premium Edition. But I also like the Norton Unlimited Edition. Both run about $70 annually.
The reason I mention Norton because the same company also makes the ubiquitous Norton Antivirus and Internet Security software. Kaspersky Internet Security is another similar program. It’s a little less known piece of software. Although I do like their antivirus software, I found their Internet Security package to be a little over the top for the price. And that’s exactly why I recommend Microsoft’s free antivirus software. It has fewer features, but the support staff is knowledgeable for the most part, and the installation guides are lamely written (which is understandable, since the developers are not making money off it).
The antivirus software that I keep on my computers is run by another company. The company that I work with is called Tensoft. It develops virus and spyware removal software called, appropriately enough, Spyware Doctor.TOP has received numerous awards by reputable technology publications for its detection and removal of spyware and viruses, and the company has significantly improved the tech support staff and the installation process. However, this doesn’t change what I tell my customers: If I don’t recognize the program I’m installing on my computer, I don’t put it on my computer.
The other thing that I tell my customers is to make sure the company you purchase from is fairly represented by a well-known digital rights group in the community. For example, the Electronic Frontier Foundation (Frontline) and The American Civil Liberties Union (ACAA) are two of the best groups to check to see if the manufacturer of a program is behaving ethically. Do yourself a favor and research a program before you buy it.