Archive for : July, 2015

Ten Computer Myths you should know and avoid

Computer myths

Computer myths

 

This article goes through some of the commonly held myths regarding computer systems and explains why they don’t work. If you also have some of your own, we welcome your contributions through comments below.

 

1) Computer virus will not happen to me

Not for modern day computers which are connected to the internet. So long as your computer needs to connect to the internet or you are passing information through flash drives, the computer is prone to virus attack. Virus can infect computers even when the user is just browsing the internet or opening a virus infected email. Virus attack computers when user least expects it. So protect your computer with a updated antivirus to protect it.

 

2) 2 antivirus installed into the computer is better than 1

Not true.

Only install 1 antivirus at any one point of time. Having multiple antivirus software within same system can cause instability and software conflict at times. Even if the older antivirus is out of date or you are no longer using it, you should always removed the existing antivirus within the system before installing the new version.

Check out our earlier article on antivirus

 

3) Mac computers are immune to virus

While it is true that Mac computers have less chance of getting virus, it is not incorrect to think that Mac computers are immune to virus attacks.

Main reason is perhaps due to lesser number of people using Mac computers as compared with Windows operating based system. Mac computers can also be affected by virus and in fact, there are also anti viruses available in the market to protect Mac computers against viruses.

 

4) Mac computers are more lasting than Windows based computers.

Not true again . We have seen repair cases for Mac computers ranging between harddisk to motherboard failures as much as Windows based machines. Computers do break down and its best to protect your interests by regularly backing up your data and buying additional warranty if the machine needs to last at least two to three years.

 

5) My computer harddisk will never fail

Again, false illusion.

We have seen our fair share of hard disk failure even for computers within the one year warranty .So once again, please do the proper back up for your computer if it is meant to do serious work.

 

6) Microsoft office suites are free

No, its not. Microsoft products are licensed products which you need to pay to use it. These include Microsoft word, excel, power point , outlook etc. They do release different versions, so find the version which suits your need and buy to use it. Refer to our earlier blog article for different versions of microsoft office available.

 

7) I only want to use Microsoft office, no other free office suites are good enough for me

Actually, it depends on why you want to use Microsoft office. There do exists a whole lot of open source office suites which may suit your purpose if all that is required is basic word, excel and powerpoint functions. Still, I have to state here that Microsoft office does offers a whole lot of unique features with each new versions released. However, if you do not need to use these features, then perhaps the open source software already fit your requirements. Only you can assess and determine that.

 

8) Programs installed on previous computer systems can just be copied over to another computer

No, it does not work like that

Programs which needs to be installed into computer systems is unlikely to just work when you copy the programs files over. Under most circumstances, these programs will have to be installed again in the new computer. So please keep all paid software and licence keys in a safe place so that they can be used in a new system when harddisk or computer has been changed.

 

9) Just clone current computer harddisk into new one and keep all programs and files

Again, no it will not work

Cloning of harddisk will only work if the new hardisk is loaded back to the exact same hardware. If the hardware is different (such as change in computer system altogether) , it is unlikely that the clone image will work on a totally different computer.

 

10) Existing hard disk is faulty, just clone the faulty harddisk and replace with new one.

Sorry, this suggestion is going to fail.

Hard disk which are already faulty cannot be cloned. You will have to replace new harddisk to the computer and load in operating system again. Or if you have previously backed up a system image, load the image into new harddisk.

Software Subscription model vs offline copy

subscribe or not

subscribe or not

Current trend is for major software developers to convince consumer to subscribe to their software on a monthly or yearly fees. A lot of people that I know do not seem to like this idea very much. In fact , when we try to introduce this model to people as an alternative, we almost always get resistance from them. They will prefer to own the software by paying much more. But is subscription model really so bad for the consumer? Let’s take a look and discuss about this in this article.

To narrow down the scope, we shall examine Microsoft Office suite which have gone on subscription model.

What is subscription model for software?

Subscription means having to pay monthly or yearly fees for the product, which in this case, is the software you will like to use. The moment the subscription is not valid, the software installed in your computer will cease to be usable.

While subscription is ongoing for these software, the software developers will release updates for the software installed in your computer and you will always enjoy the latest version and features available for the software.

What is offline retail software?

Versus subscription model, these type of software are usually activated via product key and once purchased and activated, these software do not come with expiry date. You may enjoy updates of the software tied to the current version that you have purchased, but once the software manufacturer develops a new version of the software, you will not receive any updates tied to the new version. You will only enjoy the features tied to current version purchased.

Subscription vs offline copy

There are various pros and cons supporting both models; let’s take a look at them below.

Subscription model

Pros

Cons

Enjoy latest version of the software Software stop working when user stop paying. Ongoing investment is required as long as software is needed for work.
On demand basis, when no longer need to use the software, just stop paying
Usually supports cloud storage and account synchronization. For instance, using the microsoft id, can access to documents from another computer. Usage of account is based on individual ID rather thn device. So same id can access to files across devices. Needs internet access for account synchronization.
Able to reset password to regain control of subscription ID if password is lost.
Per user cost per month is usually approximately around 10 over dollars to less than hundred dollars, depending on types of software required Per user costing may be quite high if company have many employees needing access to many softwares on subscription model

 

Retail offline copy

Pros

Cons

Available offline, no expiry date. Newer version of software not supported
One time investment costs Software tied to machine, not transferable
User may not always need latest features in the software. Older software file formats may not be compatible with newer versions of files used.
If licence key or software installer is misplaced, will not be able to reinstall software back to machine. Over time, it may be administratively difficult to keep track of which software is tied to which machine.
After some time, software may not be supported by latest operating system.

 

Sometimes, it makes sense to calculate the subscription payout to manufacturer for ongoing usage of the software versus taking the more expensive price by buying the offline copy of the software.

Microsoft Office suite

Microsoft office is so popular that people associate office suites literally with Microsoft Office. The subscription model for Microsoft office is divided to cater for individual ,family users and corporate business users.

For home users, following plans are available:

MS office home and student

MS office home and student

 

For small office users, these are the plans available:

MS office small business

MS office small business

 

The office suites , whether subscription or retail copy can bit be purchased from retail stores or online directly from Microsoft Singapore based on this link:

http://www.microsoftstore.com/store/mssg/en_SG/cat/Office/categoryID.65861600

As you will have already noticed, the subscription model for Microsoft office actually offers the full suite of software including publisher and access for both home as well as business users. Whereas if you want the retail copy of publisher and access, you will need to invest up to over five hundred dollars to use the software. Most people, especially small business will only need the usual three programs together with outlook, and hence will costs $299 for each retail pack licence. So if you do need the full suite of Microsoft programs, it may make sense to subscribe to the software.

For home users, if there are more than one computer within the family which need to use Microsoft office, then taking the family pack subscription model has very good value as one year subscription is $138, meaning that up to five computers within the family pays $11.50 per month to use the whole office suites which gets updated so long as the subscription is valid.

In conclusion, the subscription model for microsoft office may not necessarily be a bad deal if your household has few machines needs to install microsoft office.