Computer Health Checks are usually a staple offering from every computer repair business – but do you really need it and is it money worth spending?
What exactly is a Computer Health Check?
It’s a little bit like booking your car in for a Service.
However, what exactly is included in a health check seems to vary widely.
It usually includes several checks on the status of your computer with the main aim of speeding it up and making it work better. Often this includes the removal of viruses / malware, other times it does not. Sometimes it includes the installation of updates (i.e. Windows updates are) as well.
What a Computer Health Check is not?
Remember the day you used your computer for the first time and just how
quick it was then?
Well, a health check is not a miracle cure, technology has probably moved on since you first bought it, and whilst it should make it faster again, it will not make your computer last longer – except for where it is overheating and having a damaging effect on components – something that is often not even checked (obviously, we do!).
It cannot stop your hard drive from breaking but can give you an indication on the health status and thus help avoid an unexpected interruption of your business or personal activities due to a broken computer (and gives you the chance to backup your files!).
But is it money worth spending?
If your computer is sluggish and error messages keep popping up, you think something funny might be going on (pop up ads when browsing the web), warning messages are asking you to update but you are not quite sure what is right and what is not – then YES, a health check is worth the money.
But make sure you know what is included and whether it’s done individually – some bigger companies are using automated “clean-up software” – but as there is no one fits all solution, this is pretty pointless.
Can I do it myself?
If you are fairly computer literate and have the time and patience, then there is no reason why you cannot carry out the health check yourself.
Obviously, back everything up (and we mean EVERYTHING) before you start making any changes. Then check the status of your hard drive – if it’s on its way out, the more you “clean-up”, the worse it’s going to get.
Windows systems has some nifty tools built in, although they are often well hidden, such as the Clean-Up tool – there are better 3rd party tools out there but it all comes down to preference and how much time and money you are willing to invest.
Be careful and make sure you check the reputation of the tools you use, they can make things worse to a point where your computer cannot start at all and Windows must be reinstalled (not a problem, if you have done a backup though, right?).
How often should the Health Check be carried out?
Obviously, this very much depends on how much you use your computer. We usually recommend once a year unless you are experiencing any problems.
Have PC Harmony,
so you can concentrate on the more important things in life…