• Wednesday, June 12, 2024
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Important things you should do immediately when you get a new computer

Global PC market picks up after two-year decline

So you have a new PC. Maybe it was a holiday gift; maybe you bought it for yourself. You open the box, tear back the packaging materials, and pull out your shiny new computer.

Maybe it is a laptop with a powerful Intel processor, or a desktop with all the latest bells and whistles (and, if you paid enough, maybe even a horn). Now what?

A new PC is not like a new car; you cannot just turn a key and put the pedal to the metal.

Performing just a few simple activities when you first fire it up is crucial and can help it be safer, faster, and better poised for the future. Forget to configure your backup software or virus checker, and down the line, you might well find yourself troubleshooting preventable problems or recreating your documents from scratch. In this guide, we will show you the  right steps to take in order when you first unpack that new computer to avoid that.

Before following these steps, go ahead and set up the hardware, making sure all cables are well connected. If it is a laptop computer, make sure its battery and charger have been connected.

Once that is done, press the power button to boot into Windows for the first time.

Note: These instructions are geared toward Windows computers.

Windows Update

The first step is making sure your copy of Windows is fully patched and up to date, period.

Read also: How to avoid ransomware attacks on devices

Now for the bad news: Depending on how long your PC sat on the retail shelf, this could take minutes—or hours. Either way, it has to get done.

First, make sure your PC’s connected to the Internet. Open the Windows Control Panel, then head to System and Security > Windows Update > Check for Updates. Your system will search for updates, and find some. Download and install them, then reboot your computer and do it again… and again… and again… until the update check fails to return new entries.

Hopefully it won’t take too long.

Install your favorite browser

Because browsing the Internet in an unfamiliar browser is like trying to tango while you are wearing someone else’s shoes. It can be done, but it is not pretty. Surfing the Internet using your favorite browser makes it easier for you to conveniently access your favorite websites.

Some examples of browsers you can download are Chrome, Firefox, Internet explorer, Opera, etc.

Security

Latest versions of windows usually ships with Windows Defender enabled by default. It is a decent, if not overly detailed security solution. But PC makers can disable Defender if they want to preinstall ‘trialware’ for a premium security solution—like Norton or McAfee’s antivirus products—on your PC. If you decide to keep paying for that premium product, fine. But if you want to get a free antivirus, you can try free versions of Avast and AVG, available on the Internet.

Optional: Update your drivers

This step is not for everyone. Few things can introduce troublesome ghosts in your machine faster than a driver that refuses to play nice for whatever reason. If your ‘from-the-box’

PC’s working fine and you only ever plan to perform basic tasks like surfing the web, working with Office, and stuff like that, feel free to forget your computer even has drivers and keep on keeping on. Windows Update should have snagged reasonably new drivers for your hardware anyway.

But if you cobbled together a DIY rig or are rocking a gaming machine, it is a good idea to see if more updated drivers are available for your hardware. Windows Update is not always on the bleeding edge of driver updates, and new drivers for, say, your motherboard or network card can provide beneficial feature and performance updates. Gamers will need to update their graphics card drivers fairly often to ensure optimal performance in the newest  games.