SHCC WYSIWYG Article from September 2009

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This article was written by Don VanSyckel, the club president, as a part of "The President's Pen".  This article appeared in the September 2009 WYSIWYG newsletter.

Think Before You Upgrade Your Software

by Don VanSyckel

I was talking with some club members and told them that I'm not upgrading Quicken checking any more. I upgraded it once and the new version didn't have any more dollars in my checking account than the old version did. In fact I had less in the new version, the cost of the upgrade you know. So I haven't upgraded it since.

Kidding aside, I encourage you to read the features of new versions and don't just automatically upgrade. If you need the features, by all means spend your money and upgrade. If you don't need the features, wait for the next version or at least wait a month for a sale.

In a lot of cases a fresh load of windows will do as much or more than a new version of the software. I said a fresh load of windows, this does not necessarily mean a new version of windows. If an application is slow or possible the entire PC is slow, reloading windows could do a lot for you. This can be done by re-imaging to the manufacturer's recovery disk, it could be done by restoring a Ghost image you did in the past, or the most painful loading windows from the Windows' install disk. A reload will get rid of any little loose ends in Windows, any spy ware, ad ware, or any other slow down you have imposed on yourself.

If you have to reload any applications make sure to check if they launch anything during start up. For instance, both Microsoft Office and Open Office Dot Org install something that runs at start up. These items not only prolong the start up process they use some memory and some CPU cycles. Any one of these start up goodies would be OK but there can get to be more and more and they do add up.

I have been told there are some PC health checkers available. If you've used one let me know which one and what you think of it.

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