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Tuesday, September 12, 2006

I Need a New Computer!

It was SaurKid's weekend with his dad this last Saturday and Sunday, so I didn't have access to my child protege. When I told SaurKid what was happening with my computer, he asked me if I'd run certain diagnostics which I'd never heard from. So, I handed him the reigns.

Soon SaurKid had come back with the announcement that I had a trojan horse and a virus. Great. That, combined with Verizon's crappy service, and we have a recipe for a true disaster.

However, my system needs updating and I'm thinking it's time to get a computer that someone can fix easily, over the phone. This one is a mutt that was put together for a computer show at the Florida State Fair Grounds by a company based in Miami (a 4-6 hour drive away, depending on how fast you drive. For me... 4 hours).

I got a system where if I need to get it fixed or even speak to someone, they are way beyond my reach. I don't want to go through that again. Because I'm not a computer guru when it comes to hardware, I'm considering getting a Dell. What are your thoughts and suggestions?

26 comments:

Anonymous said...

I work in the IT field and I would not recommend getting a Dell desktop, to get the most bang for your buck you should look at getting a Gateway desktop. It is what I have recommended to my family and my technical support calls from them have been reduced drastically. If you are looking to get a laptop that is a whole different story. As far as having a virus, you need to make sure you have updated Anti-virus and spyware software at all times. The best product I have found for spyware is Webroot Spysweeper, as far as anti-virus most of them work about the same.
Ange

Edge said...

Well, at least your boy knows his condoms.

~Jef

Edge said...

And I agree, get the Dell and invest in some good antivirus software. I can't stop ranting about an anti-spyware package CounterSpy from Sunbelt Software. Verizon may offer McAfee for free or Norton for free. Those are the two top virus packages. Comcast does. Check into it. I'd suggest McAfee and Microsoft's beta product for spyware. Ya, three things. The bad guys have advanced. The best defense is for you to stop going to porn sites.

~Jef

OldHorsetailSnake said...

Get a Toshiba laptop from your nearest Best Buy. They can set it up for you (for a fee).

Badoozie said...

dell can be just as junky as the next heap. creative people use mac.

Badoozie said...

and if the plug on your toshiba laptop breaks like they are want to do, it will cost you 400 bux cause they attached it to the flippin motherboard

FruitfulSpirit said...

My brother has used dell for years. He only uses laptops because they go where he goes. I get my upgrade everytime he does. :) I think if it does what you need buy what you want but yes make sure there is some on hand help.

My sister bought into Gateway desktop and loves the service. They have helped her through numerous crashes, hard drive replacements and upgrades.

Me, I call my brother for tech support! He would tell you to get the best virus scan you can, we use a free one and it does a great job.

R2K said...

Dell is good. I personally always build my computers, and build them for others. I know you may not care to do this, but it really helps you learn computers once and for all. Now I know everything I need to know, I can fix anything myself (even if it means simply ordering new parts if they break).

Something to think about! Other than that, dell is the best.

Grant said...

I didn't get a Dell because their lousy Indian customer service couldn't process my credit card. However, I've heard from several people that once you fight your way past the payment problems, the equipment and support are both top notch. Maybe they're just making sure you are worthy of them before letting you have one of their PCs.

mckay said...

saur, is your head spinning yet? mine is.

i have a mini mac because i could switch to mac and keep my same monitor and keyboard (less cash towards a new system). now i'm ready to buy a flat screen monitor, but what i really want is a mac laptop. caCHING.

Miss Cellania said...

I have always used Macs, and cannot for the life of me understand why anyone would go with a PC. Now I have a Mac Mini, the first computer I ever bought brand new. It was $500, the flatscreen (not a Mac) was $150. The keyboard and mouse I already had, but they are cheap. And you'll never worry about viruses, worms, or horses again.

Lava said...

Hi! I haven't been around in a while - but thought I'd drop my two sense in anyway - we use Dell at work - I am the IT person here - I wouldnt' recommend them - if you get a good one they are okay - but I replace ALOT of hardware. I have a compaq at home - and usually you can get a great price on one at Walmart - and the support is awesome. We use Gateway at our library - they are great oo - we never have problems with them!

Anyway - how you been?

js said...

I never had had one that i liked all that much. I wish i could run my biz selling a product that crashed all the time, was out of date the minute that you bought it, had lil or no warranty and when it was fubar there wasn't even the outside chance that you could speak to someone that used your language, and be successful!!!
good luck!
jsull28fl@yaho

EmmaSometimes said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
EmmaSometimes said...

Norton Home is good, McAfee Business is better (McAfee Home sucks big time!!)

With Norton you have to upgrade every year or so. McAfee you purchase and download upgrades with virus definitions so you don't have to worry about shelling out $$ with every upgrade.

Webroot Spysweeper or Spybot Search & Destroy are both fab and free! I use Lavasoft's Ad-Aware and Spybot S&D together.

When you download free anti-spyware programs make sure they are from a reputable site (download.com, tucows.com). Sometimes spyware programs are disguised as ANTI-spyware programs online and you infect yourself.

I built my own system so I can't help you with the rest. :o)

Notsocranky Yankee said...

Most of my data is saved on a desktop computer, but I work on my laptop the most. Cranky bought us matching Gateway laptops (widescreen) for around $600 at Best Buy. You can also get an Acer (good deal for the $) for around $500. Just go see what kind of deals you can find. Good luck!

green said...

I personally use a Gateway laptop on my desk (so I can take it with me if I need to) with an Intel Pentium 4 processor. I also had it installed with Windows XP Home edition, but would have gotten the office version instead if I had known better. I believe I paid $1500 for my system, including shipping. I'll never use all of the memory on this thing....

I've never had to call Gateway for support and I've had this computer since 2003.

Though right now I don't have any sound and I can't figure out why.

I got an all-in one printer/scanner from tigerdirect.com for under $150 and I thought that was a great deal.

I also use Norton Antivirus and have had no issues with it. When I did get a virus here, Norton easily helped me get rid of it.

I'm not a computer techie either, believe me. I wish I was, though.

Mr. Fabulous said...

This will be no help, but I got a Dell Inspiron 9300 laptop this year, and Mrs. Fab got one as well, and we just love them to pieces.

Fred said...

I have a Dell for the kids; it's been great. I would also recommend an external hard drive to back up all your data. It's saved my life a few times.

michelle said...

Just let hubby take care of the situation for you.

Bryan said...

I agree with anonymous. I have a Gateway and it, along with the support, have been superb.

I also agree with anonymous about Webroot. The only drawback I have found with it is that it uses up lots of memory, though for PC's with lots of memory that's not a problem. Which is why whatever make you decide to purchase, I also recommend you order all the memory (RAM) you can afford.

And what Fred said about the external hard drive is true also. I have one and it has saved me a lot of headaches, and it makes it so much easier and faster to back-up your files.

daveawayfromhome said...

If your primary worry is Foriegn Invasion, you might want to go with Mac, although everything is more expensive down that road. Otherwise, I'd suggest Wal-Mart or Fry Electronics or some other bulk discounter. Then buy the cheapest one you can. Hell, buy two. Drop in a gig of RAM, and if the whole thing craps out after a year or two, how much have you spent? (and you can transfer the RAM.) This is the one I got, but on sale at half the price (wait a few days), and I've had no problems other than a bad RAM chip (which I just pulled out since I added a gig extra anyway) and some keyboard wierdness (so I use my old one).
I'll agree with Emma on the defensive software. You might also raise your cookie standards, especially when you're just surfing.

daveawayfromhome said...

Thinking about it, I realize that my happiness depends on me not being a complete computer idiot (please dont take that statement wrong, I dont know your level of computer savvy). I dont know much, but I was able to figure out the RAM problem (symptom: sudden and random reboot). And I dont store a whole lot on mine, so if I need to wipe it and reload (my usual software fix-it), I dont loose much. This may not work well for you, in which case customer support (which I try to avoid because they involve phones and describing things over them) may be more important to you.

MissChris said...

Yea, what Michelle said. He picked out a great computer for me.

R2K said...

Um, dont listen to anyone who says norton anything is good. Norton is a disaster. You will use AVG for viruses, and Spybot for all other things. Both are free, neither one will take over and ruin your computer like norton WILL. I am not saying norton can, I am saying norton WILL ruin your computer unless you spend as much time and effort keeping it under wraps as you would for viruses anyway. I have now fixed a dozen computers. They ran like crap. When I get there, expecting to find viruses adware etc, I simply find norton. This is no joke. No matter what you do, steer cleer of norton. If they give it to you for free with the system, delete it (ask the kid to do that) and download AVG for free (google search).

Valerie - Riding Solo said...

I got a Dell, pentium 4 - the mate got an emachine, amd athalon 64.

His ran circles around mine! We had always had AMD boards and chips before, I gave the Dell to a kid and got me an emachine laptop and I love it. I maxed it to the one gig of memory and I use it just like a desk top - but it goes with easily.

so what ever you pick look for the AMD 64 sticker on it.

Norton not only doesn't do what it should, uses too much memory and cuts out some programs thinking they are viruses but most trojans and worms now turn it off or corrupt the working file anyway.

AVG is good!