What does Computer Repair mean?
Computer repair is the process of identifying, troubleshooting and resolving problems and issues in a faulty computer. Computer repair is a broad field encompassing many tools, techniques and procedures used to repair computer hardware, software or network/Internet problems.
Computer repair is also known as a PC repair. Computer repair is handled by a specialized computer repair technician. Typically, a hardware fault requires the physical review of a computer and testing for abnormalities. Suspected components, such as random access memory (RAM), hard disk, power supply or optical drive may be individually checked, troubleshooted or replaced if an error is detected. This usually requires special equipment and accessories to disassemble and reassemble the computer.
Software-based computer repair issues are generally related to operating system (OS) configuration or updates, installed applications, viruses and other software services. Similarly, computer repair for network/Internet issues allow a computer to completely utilize available and network services.
Virus / Spyware / Malware
Your computer got infected by a nasty virus. Windows is slow, your web browser freezes and you are constantly fighting to get rid of strange popups, warnings and advertisements. These are all signs of a malware infection. You are worried about your files, your personal data and your apps. You tried to scan your computer with the antivirus you have installed but it doesn’t report anything or it just can’t clean the virus infection. Even worse, you did not have an antivirus installed and now you can’t install any antivirus because the virus blocks its installation. That’s a tough situation to find yourself in, and cleaning your computer from viruses is going to be a hard and lengthy process. This is where we can help.
In computing, data recovery is a process of salvaging (retrieving) inaccessible, lost, corrupted, damaged or formatted data from secondary storage, removable media or files, when the data stored in them cannot be accessed in a normal way. The data is most often salvaged from storage media such as internal or external hard disk drives (HDDs), solid-state drives (SSDs), USB flash drives, magnetic tapes, CDs, DVDs, RAID subsystems, and other electronic devices. Recovery may be required due to physical damage to the storage devices or logical damage to the file system that prevents it from being mounted by the host operating system (OS).
The most common data recovery scenario involves an operating system failure, malfunction of a storage device, logical failure of storage devices, accidental damage or deletion, etc. (typically, on a single-drive, single-partition, single-OS system), in which case the ultimate goal is simply to copy all important files from the damaged media to another new drive. This can be easily accomplished using a Live CD, many of which provide a means to mount the system drive and backup drives or removable media, and to move the files from the system drive to the backup media with a file manager or optical disc authoring software. Such cases can often be mitigated by disk partitioning and consistently storing valuable data files (or copies of them) on a different partition from the replaceable OS system files.
Another scenario involves a drive-level failure, such as a compromised file system or drive partition, or a hard disk drive failure. In any of these cases, the data is not easily read from the media devices. Depending on the situation, solutions involve repairing the logical file system, partition table or master boot record, or updating the firmware or drive recovery techniques ranging from software-based recovery of corrupted data, hardware- and software-based recovery of damaged service areas (also known as the hard disk drive's "firmware"), to hardware replacement on a physically damaged drive which involves changes the parts of the damaged drive to make the data in a readable form and can be copied to a new drive. If a drive recovery is necessary, the drive itself has typically failed permanently, and the focus is rather on a one-time recovery, salvaging whatever data can be read.
In a third scenario, files have been accidentally "deleted" from a storage medium by the users. Typically, the contents of deleted files are not removed immediately from the physical drive; instead, references to them in the directory structure are removed, and thereafter space the deleted data occupy is made available for later data overwriting. In the mind of end users, deleted files cannot be discoverable through a standard file manager, but the deleted data still technically exists on the physical drive. In the meantime, the original file contents remain, often in a number of disconnected fragments, and may be recoverable if not overwritten by other data files.
The term "data recovery" is also used in the context of forensic applications or espionage, where data which have been encrypted or hidden, rather than damaged, are recovered. Sometimes data present in the computer gets encrypted or hidden due to reasons like virus attack which can only be recovered by some computer forensic experts.
Parts Replacement & Upgrades
Any time a computer component stops working, or just becomes unstable — as we all know will happen from time to time — we have to decide whether to replace it, have it repaired, or just get by as is with perhaps a temporary fix. Repair or just getting by will nearly always be the cheapest solution, at least in the short run. Replacement, however, will usually provide a good opportunity to upgrade. In fact, given the rate at which the various technologies behind computer hardware are advancing, unless you replace something a week after you buy it, you may almost be forced to upgrade. Following are a few items which, if replaced (and generally upgraded), can provide excellent benefits, from an enhanced user experience to additional compatibility, greater longevity, and stability for the whole system.
One of the most overlooked pieces of computer hardware is the power supply unit (PSU). Computer enthusiasts often brag about their blazing fast processors, top-of-the- line video cards, and gigs upon gigs of RAM, but rarely about their great PSUs.
The truth is, the power supply is the last thing we should skimp on when choosing components for our system. If a computer's brain is its processor, its heart is the power supply. And having one that is worn out, underpowered, unstable, or just generally cheap can be a major cause of hardware failure.
Every computer's power requirements are different, but a good minimum for a modern PC is 450 watts. Some systems, especially those with multiple high-end video cards or lots of add-on cards and peripherals may require a PSU rated at 800 watts or more. Replacing a failing or inadequate power supply can make a previously unstable system stable.
Aside from supplying enough power, that power must be supplied stably. A common cause of "unexplained" lockups and system crashes is a drop in voltage supplied to the system when under load, caused by a poorly manufactured PSU.
As computers have gotten more powerful over the last decades, they have also gotten hotter. Gone are the days of a passively cooled Pentium 100; now we have fans on our massive CPU heatsinks, on our monster video cards, and on intake and outtake vents to our computer cases. All of these fans are playing important roles by keeping our computers safely cooled, and we should try to ensure that they continue doing so.
Fans are one of the few parts that when replaced will not usually be replaced with something better. But they deserve mention because:
As one of the few moving parts in our system, they are one of the most likely to actually break.
When they break, it's likely to pass unnoticed or not cause much concern.
Also, fans are cheap and easy to replace. It generally takes about 20 dollars, 15 minutes, and a screwdriver to install a new one, so there's really no good excuse for not doing so.
The video card is one of the most important elements in the performance of your gaming or editing system and overall user experience. Even though it is also one of the priciest components, there are two good reasons to replace it should your old one bite the dust. Video cards are one of the components that are being improved upon seemingly every day. Just like with CPUs, a video card that's two years old simply isn't as fast as a current one and won't have the newest features.
Flash media reader
All kinds of devices use flash cards these days: cameras, MP3 players, even cell phones. These small devices let us take our data anywhere easily. Since it seems as if every device uses a different format of flash media, most of us have all-in-one type card readers. If the reader breaks or gets lost (which seems to happen a lot), there are two excellent reasons for upgrading to a newer model instead of trying to repair the old one.
First, many old card readers are USB 1.1. The newer ones use USB 2.0 and 3.0 instead, which is faster. This is more than enough reason to replace an old reader, even if it's not broken.
In addition, new formats are constantly coming out for flash cards, and when they do, you need a new reader to use them. For example, Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) and xD from Fujifilm are not supported by older readers.
Considering that it has moving, spinning parts, the average CD/DVD drive is actually fairly robust. Because of that, however, many people are still using old read-only (or CD RW) drives instead of amazingly cheap (and handy) DVD writers. If you're still using an old drive and it finally gives up the ghost, you'll probably be glad it did when you replace it with a DVD/CD RW.
The computer component we all least want to fail is the hard drive. It's easier to cope with the loss of the much more expensive processor or video card as long as we still have our precious data, so your first instinct is to try to repair it. But if you've been practicing good backup habits, you can actually come out of the situation better off when you replace the old drive with something bigger and faster.
The "giant" 100-GB hard drive of a few years ago is no longer so large. Today, you can get much larger for less than 200 bucks. Prices of SSD (solid state drives) is worth noting also.
With the exception of servers, a computer isn't much good without a monitor. Monitors rarely make it all the way to the stage of completely not working, because we replace them when they start to fade. If you replace a monitor that's more than a few years old, the new will likely not much resemble the old.
Any reluctance you may have had to switch from the giant 50-pound cathode ray tube (CRT) monitor to a slim and featherweight liquid crystal display (LCD) or LED should be gone by now.
Since so many of us spend hours every day banging away at them, it's important to have a keyboard that's comfortable and efficient. And since we use them so much and often so brutally, it is no wonder that they break often. Keys come off, get stuck, or just get really dirty. When these things happen, you should usually go ahead and replace the keyboard rather than live with the hassle.
Today's keyboards have new, handy features. Some have built in user-defined macro keys for often-repeated commands; some can fold up for easy transportability; some have built-in ports so they can double as USB hubs. There is a keyboard with some unique feature to suit nearly anyone's needs.
Motherboard and processor
Replacing the motherboard is always the most involved upgrade as most case scenarios force you to replace other parts including your processor (CPU) and Ram.
Computers need to be maintained, like any other machine. But running computer diagnostics can't become a full-time job when you have work to do (or games to play). The best way to deal with problems is to deal with them before they get serious. Here are a few computer diagnostic steps you can take to keep your machine running smoothly and problem-free.
Run a Virus Scan
Schedule a regular virus scan to make sure your machine is free of infectious malware and destructive viruses. The best antivirus software in the world is no good if you don't use it — use the software's scheduling to run a scan every few days, preferably while you're not using it.
Check Your Connections
Sometimes troubleshooting a problem doesn't require a complex PC diagnostic — it can be as simple as a loose connection, or an unplugged cord. Every computer technician probably has the story of fixing a client's "broken" machine by plugging it back in, or turning a power switch back on. It may seem obvious, but it's worth checking out before you move on to more time-consuming computer diagnostics.
Clean it Out
A computer will naturally accumulate dust, hair, and dirt over time. Keeping the outside clean isn't enough — you should occasionally open up the machine and spray it out with computer duster ("canned air") to clear out the junk. Just use caution! Make sure the room is well-ventilated before you start. Verify that the computer is unplugged from the power source, and ground yourself by touching a metal part of the case to avoid causing static damage to any of the components. The occasional cleanup can work more magic than the most complex PC diagnostic.
Listen For Noises
Most modern computers make almost no noise while they operate. Any sign of whining, whirring, grinding, or clicking can be a danger sign. One of the most common components to fail on a computer is the fan — either those on the motherboard, or the fan on the video card. An overheated video card can cause shutdowns, lockups, or even permanent hardware damage. Most of all, watch out for the distinctive "clicking" of a dying hard drive — it means the drive probably only has a little time left.
Track Any Changes
One simple computer diagnostic to maintain your machine is to keep track of any major changes in your computer. Write down or record when you install new software, change hardware, or change any important settings and remember to always backup your data.