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Frustrated With BAD Tech Support? You’re Not Alone

A recent stream of Reddit comments emerged detailing a series of poor customer service experiences with tech support. While I typically try to stay clear of Reddit and its gang of chronic whiny-pants commenters, I scrolled through a few, you know, for research purposes since I’m in the industry. A...

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“Savings” That Could Cost You EVERYTHING

As a business leader, you’re always looking for ways to increase revenue, cut expenses and grow your bottom line. Implementing AI tools, shopping services and running a more efficient operation are great ways to do that. One place you do NOT want to cut corners is using free antivirus or...

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How Poor Tech Support Is Slowing Down Your Business

If you’re serious about growing a successful, profitable business in 2024 and beyond, there’s no room for pass-the-buck tactics – especially when it comes to IT support. The efficiency of your IT team isn’t just a convenience – it’s a cornerstone of your operational capability. Yet many companies find themselves...

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Apple Might Never Have Released The Macintosh If This Happened

Steve Wozniak was asked in an interview what he would have done differently if he had been Apple’s CEO instead of Jobs. He said he would have been “a lot nicer to people,” but then quickly added that IF he had been CEO, they might never have released the Macintosh....

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AT&T Attack Reveals 73 Million Customer Records Exposed On The Dark Web

In a statement released by the largest telecommunications company in the United States, AT&T, they shared that they recently discovered a dataset for sale on the “dark web” that contained information for about 7.6 million current AT&T account holders and 65.4 million former users, totaling approximately 73 million affected accounts....

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The Safest Way To Shop For Mother’s Day Online

Are you planning on buying gifts for the special women in your life for Mother’s Day? If you shop online, there are a few ways to do it SAFELY. During the holidays, cybercriminals ramp up various scams to capitalize on innocent people looking for gifts online. These scams range from...

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10 Things Great IT Providers Always Do

What sets high-quality, reliable IT support apart from mediocre or substandard support? Is it lower prices? Flat-fee service? At Centrend, we believe there are many deciding factors that separate even the good from the great providers, but when our clients switch from their old companies to us, we get the...

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What Is Bad IT Support Costing Your Business?

In our technology-driven world, efficient IT support is the backbone of any successful business. From ensuring seamless operations to safeguarding sensitive data, reliable IT services are crucial for maintaining productivity and protecting your bottom line. However, not all IT support is created equal, and the cost of settling for subpar...

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 Suspect Your Computer Has Been Hacked? Do These 5 Things Now!

The initial reaction when you suspect your computer or network has been compromised is to panic. However, if your network has been breached, what you do next can make the difference between the incident being a minor inconvenience and being a devastating disaster that brings legal trouble and huge fines...

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Financial Advisor Loses $50K To A Scammer

Horror stories of people getting scammed out of hundreds or even thousands of dollars aren’t in short supply. As we scroll through the news app from the comfort of our couch, reading these accounts of how a stupid so-and-so opened an obviously suspicious attachment and a hacker drained their bank...

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Top Tax Scams Every Business Owner Needs To Watch Out For In 2024

Tax season is around the corner, which means so are tax scams. Without fail, every year, individuals and business owners alike fall victim to tax scams, resulting in the loss of substantial amounts of money and sensitive personal data. According to the Better Business Bureau, taxpayers lost $5.7 billion due...

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6 Common Technology Problems Small Business Owners Face

Technology can provide a strategic advantage for companies in every industry when properly utilized. However, one of the biggest issues small business owners face is overcoming some of the common tech obstacles that hinder productivity. These issues can range from minor inconveniences to serious threats that can permanently shut down...

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Pirates Aren’t Just Threats On The Open Seas

“Know Ye That We Have Granted And Given License To Adam Robernolt and William le Sauvage…to annoy our enemies by sea or by land, wheresoever they are able, so that they share with us the half of all their gain.” These were the words of King Henry III of England...

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How “Cheaper” IT Providers Sneak In Expensive Hidden Costs

Is your company looking to hire an IT firm? Unfortunately, unless you’re tech-savvy or experienced with IT contracts, there can be hidden costs that you wouldn’t expect or know to look for. While it can sound appealing to go for the cheapest firm, that decision can end up costing you...

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New Security Features To Protect Your Phone In 2024

Long gone are the days when phones were simple devices used to make calls. Today our phones are advanced, handheld supercomputers that can do everything from pay a bill to order lunch for delivery to edit videos and more. But with more capabilities come more risks. Because our phones are...

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Your 15-Step IT Profitability Road Map For 2024

If you’re hoping to cut costs and boost profitability in 2024 without compromising productivity or efficiency, assessing the technology you use in day-to-day operations is one of the first areas in your business to examine. We’ve created a road map that you can use to go step-by-step through your organization...

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Beware Of Cybersquatters!

Have you ever searched for a specific website but landed on a completely different one after misspelling a letter or two in the URL? This deceptive tactic is known as cybersquatting. This practice not only jeopardizes the online presence of businesses and individuals but also poses a significant challenge in...

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How IT Support Companies Charge For Their Services – Part 1 Of 2

Before you can accurately compare the fees, services and deliverables of one IT services company to that of another, you need to understand the two predominant pricing and service models most of these companies offer. Many companies offer a blend of the two, while others are strict about offering only...

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7 Ways To Maximize Workplace Productivity With Tech

In the fast-paced world of business, efficiency and productivity are paramount. Advancements in technology have revolutionized the way we work, providing a plethora of tools and resources to help us accomplish more in less time. Maximizing workplace productivity with technology has become an essential strategy for organizations looking to stay...

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New And Urgent Bank Account Fraud Alert 

The infamous Xenomorph Android malware, known for targeting 56 European banks in 2022, is back and in full force targeting US banks, financial institutions and cryptocurrency wallets.  The cyber security and fraud detection company ThreatFabric has called this one of the most advanced and dangerous Android malware variants they’ve seen....

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May A Force Field Be With You

“That won’t happen to me” is something many business owners say when discussing cyber-scams and the need for adequate protections for their business, but these days it’s getting to be a really, really stupid statement that you definitely don’t want your clients, employees and banker to hear. Generative AI (artificial...

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The Bad Bot Takeover Is Here

There is one extremely common threat to our security that nearly everyone has witnessed but hardly anyone talks about – bad bots. These silent attackers are often thought of as annoying spam accounts posting computer-generated comments online. They are so common that most of us tend to scroll by them...

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10 Tasks You Didn’t Know Your IT Team Could Do For You

When you run your own business, it feels like there are never enough hours in the day. Even when you start early and end late, there’s always something else, another e-mail or task, nagging for your attention. If you want to be productive, and ultimately successful, it’s important to prioritize...

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7 Quick Fixes To Fix SLOW Home Wi-Fi

Nothing is more aggravating than attempting to watch a video or use your PC when the Internet is operating slower than molasses flowing uphill in winter. For our clients, we have many solutions to make your Internet connection faster, more reliable and secure. But what about at your home? Spotty,...

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Are Your Business Tools Ticking Time Bombs For A Cyber-Attack?

In June a popular file-sharing software amongst big-name companies likes Shell, Siemens Energy, Sony, several large law firms, a number of US federal agencies such as the Department of Health and more was hacked by Russia-linked cybercrime group Cl0p. Security Magazine reported that, to date, there are 138 known companies...

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The Key To Scaling Your Company Efficiently

As a business owner, you know that continuous, steady growth is an essential part of success. When you’re ready to get serious about scaling your organization, several vital activities must happen. Documented workflows and processes, streamlined hiring, onboarding and training, well-oiled marketing systems and more top the list. One key...

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Your Personal Titanic Moment

On a recent interview about the Titan sub catastrophe, director of the movie Titanic James Cameron, who has made 33 successful dives to the Titanic wreckage site, pointed out that this tragedy is eerily similar to the 1912 Titanic disaster: the captain of the 1912 RMS Titanic was repeatedly warned...

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Where Did All My Stuff Go?!

Has this happened to you? You are working on your Windows computer, and suddenly, while typing, your stuff disappears, and you are staring at your blank desktop! Then you realize your stuff didn’t disappear, it just all minimized to the bottom taskbar. Now you must open everything up again, but...

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Facebook Owes You Money!

How To Apply For Your Share Of Facebook’s Recent $725 Million Privacy Lawsuit Here’s a shocker: Facebook is being forced to pay a whopping $725 million in a settlement following a number of lawsuits claiming they violated users’ privacy. This is in addition to another class action lawsuit for $650...

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Microsoft Teams Productivity Tips Every SMEs Needs To Know

Every business needs the right tools to get the job done and to keep your team on track. But juggling multiple apps and software can be a nightmare when trying to keep information streamlined and easily accessible. That’s where Microsoft Teams for small businesses comes into play. In this article,...

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10 Common Tech Problems SMEs Are Eliminating From Their Business Forever

They say, “You get what you tolerate” and now more than ever, we’ve been conditioned to tolerate worse service at higher prices. Companies get a ‘free pass’ simply by saying phrases like “the labor shortage,” “because COVID,” or “inflation.” But it doesn’t have to be that way. While you may...

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Death By CHEAPNESS

Southwest Airlines’ recent fiasco that caused them to cancel over 16,700 flights, leaving people stranded across America, was the epitome of what’s happening with so many businesses right now across the US. A total and complete meltdown in service due to cheapness. During their busiest season, Southwest had to apologize for...

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Winner Winner Chicken Dinner!

What do these three real e-mails have in common?  Kohl’s Winner – “Notifications – Re: 2nd attempt for Paul” WalmartStores – “Re: CONFIRMED: Paul you are selected” Lowe’s Winner – “Congratulations Paul! You Are The Lucky Online Winner Of A Brand-New Sweepstakes Dewalt Power Station Entry No, “Paul” isn’t the...

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Are Your Smart Devices (Siri, Alexa, Google) Eavesdropping On You?

Have you ever had a conversation about a topic, and then later that day you start seeing news, ads, or updates about that subject, and said to yourself, “This can’t be a coincidence”? Well, you’re probably right.  According to Norton, who you may remember as an antivirus software company and...

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This ONE Person Can Sink Your Company

It’s not just cybercriminals who hack into networks and steal data. Most business owners erroneously think cybercrime is limited to hackers based in China or Russia, but the evidence is overwhelming that disgruntled employees, both of your company and your vendors, can cause significant losses due to their knowledge of...

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Technology Problems Shouldn’t Be Scary

If you depend on your computer network to run your business (and who doesn’t?), you’ll want someone treating your data as securely as they would their own.    Not knowing what’s going on behind the scenes should scare the crap out of you. It is NOT unreasonable that your IT company...

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What is your stripper name?

Anyone active on social media has seen those seemingly harmless quizzes that someone in your newsfeed takes and then shares…the ones that ask you to enter your first name, your middle name, and the street you grew up on to create your “new name.” Joe + Schmo + Blow Avenue...

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Are You On A Bad Date And Don’t Even Know It?

They don’t call you back, they don’t text back, and when you get time with them, they are disheveled, rude, and uninterested, doing barely enough to keep things going. This sounds like a bad date…and it’s one that many businesses are on with their current IT guy. You have a...

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How To Find Your Passwords (And Never Need To Reset Them Again)

There are two types of people…which one are you? The frustrated, constant updater: You find yourself having to constantly click on “Forgot My Password” and verify your account, check your texts, scan a finger (give a pint of blood…maybe not that one) so you can reset your password. And it’s...

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Scarier Than The Boogeyman

One of the common issues on the Dark Web – whether you use it or not – is the sale of passwords, bank account information, Social Security numbers, and other private data. Hackers can breach firewalls and software to obtain this information and then go to the Dark Web to...

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Controlling Startup Programs in Windows 10

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aSQiydksJuE So many things we use on our computers will automatically add themselves to the startup. While some of these are important, most of the time they are unwelcome party crashers that slow your computer down. In this podcast episode, I’ll show you how to evaluate the programs that startup...

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Learning to Use Windows in Windows

In today’s video blog, I show you how you can snap windows to the corners of your display essentially creating a multi-monitor effect on a single screen. It’s really handy when you need to look at two different windows at the same time. We’ll start with positioning two windows on...

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How to Set Up and Use a Password Manager

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z9Kx9rND6x4 Passwords are a hassle, no doubt about it! In this blog post and video, I show you how to set up a password manager to help control password chaos. There are two tools that we recommend for managing passwords. One is LastPass, which is a cloud-based solution.  The other...

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Sanitize your Electronics with UV Sanitizer Gadgets

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yqXYClyi-gc Using a UV Sanitizer is an easy and safe way to protect yourself from germs lingering on your electronics. In this blog post, I show you how to use two different devices designed to keep you safe. First, the phone soap.  This is a very slick device designed to...

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How to Use Multi-factor Authentication

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lW7FhDMmzNY Multi-factor authentication is a very secure process of keeping your sensitive data private. In this blog, I explain in simple terms what Multi-factor authentication is, why you should use it where available, and how you can use it to keep your data private. First, what is Multi-factor authentication and...

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How To Set Up Email Signatures

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pT298DBYG8Y Technology Tips By Centrend Podcast: Episode #6 Don’t you admire the professional look of a well-crafted email signature? Much more than just a name, a well-designed email signature is a block of text and graphics representing you and your brand. In this video podcast, I will show you how...

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How to Recover Your Windows 7 Password

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V5dFilcmY4w Technology Tips By Centrend Podcast: Episode #5 With the scarcity of computers right now and the need for additional computers for remote working and remote learning, many folks are dusting off their old Windows 7 computers. The problem is, you may not remember the password to it. In this...

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Using a Whiteboard in 2020

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dyyB-OWr3So Technology Tips by Centrend Podcast: Episode 4 I love working with a whiteboard. In fact, I can think of no technique more effective for brainstorming a project than getting a team of folks to share ideas in front of a whiteboard.  In 2020, we are forced out of the office,...

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Fun Ways to Improve Your Typing Skills

https://youtu.be/8S-6LXy57Cg Technology Tips by Centrend Podcast: Episode 3 These days, when we aren’t on camera in a web meeting, it seems like we are typing on our computer keyboards. Typing skills are essential to be productive and competitive. I’m going to show you some effective and fun ways to improve...

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Review Your Cyber Security Plan in Four Simple Steps

Increasing Threats Companies rely more and more on digital information and network-enabled devices. Threats are increasing, and cybercrime is on the rise, so it’s no wonder cybersecurity is increasingly important. Is your company prepared for a cyber attack? If you are like most small/medium businesses, you don’t have a written plan at...

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Don’t Get Caught by a “Phisherman!”

https://youtu.be/FtdD_mQsTRg Technology Tips by Centrend Podcast: Episode 2 “Phishing” is a social hacking attempt to get you to reveal information that hackers can use to exploit your email or computer account. Here are some clues on how to detect a phishing attempt and what you should be looking for. Welcome to...

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How to Fix Common Zoom Meeting Problems

https://youtu.be/cc2rpvI-SH8 Technology Tips by Centrend Podcast: Episode 1 We’ve all come to rely on online meetings to stay connected with business associates, remote learning for our children, and keep in touch with our loved ones that we can’t visit in person. That’s why in this first episode of my video...

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What 6 things increase the longevity of your computer?

Individuals and small businesses struggle with ways to increase the lifetime value of their PC hardware. ​ What can you do​ to keep your computer running strong like you?​ Extending the life of existing desktops and laptops to reduce your cost and lower your budget is critical in today’s economic...

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Is My Internet Service Provider’s Firewall Strong Enough?

When an Internet Service Provider (ISP) installs internet access in your business, you are usually provided with a router/firewall combination. Do you need to invest in a commercial-grade firewall, or is the ISP’s firewall sufficient? Let’s start with a simple description of what a firewall is and how it protects...

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Six Ways Scammers are taking advantage of COVID-19

Cyber Criminals are taking advantage of the COVID-19 pandemic in some of the worse ways. Read on to learn how to avoid their evil scams… 1. Phishing: Phishing (pronounced fishing) occurs when criminals send fake mail, email, or phone calls pretending they are legit. They try to convince you to share...

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How do you know if you have Spyware in your computer?

Sometimes, it’s obvious, right?  There is a big obnoxious warning that pops up and tells you that you are infected and you need to call for support! Don’t call the number presented because that’s a scam. Call us instead!  Other times, the infection is much more subtle. Here are some...

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How to Clean and Disinfect Computer Equipment Without Destroying it

With the threat of coronavirus (COVID-19) all around us, we are all being more diligent about wiping down our work areas. One of the highest touch areas in your environment is your keyboard, mouse, and touch screens. If you’re a customer of Centrend, I already have the inside of your...

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Working Remotely? Are you secure?

Since the Coronavirus pandemic outbreak, there has been a massive surge of remote workers. Your information is at risk when remote access is not done correctly! Read on to learn what to avoid when it comes to remote workers. Remote access requires careful thought and planning to keep business data...

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Centrend COVID-19 Response

Centrend cares about our employees’ and our customer’s safety, and we’re doing our part to reduce the spread and flatten the curve. Read on to learn what we are doing to keep safe and keep our customers’ information systems running well. We are practicing social distancing and utilizing our extensive...

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Don’t Frankenstein your IT!

Are you trying to cobble together pieces of disparate systems that weren’t meant to talk to each other? Are you hopeful that connecting mismatched data sets will breathe life into your IT Systems? Don’t Frankenstein your IT! Read on to find out what I mean. You know the story of Dr....

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Is Your Router Slowing Down Your Wi-Fi?

Your router is the box that connects your computers, phones, and tablets to the outside world. If your router is old or undersized for the number of devices you have, it can create a bottleneck. Here are a few essential things to keep in mind when assessing your router. These rules apply...

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Internet Seem Slow? Consider this!

If you are using a laptop on a slow wireless connection such as hotel Wi-Fi or a cellular hotspot, your connection can slow to a crawl if you have installed cloud services such as Dropbox, Google Drive, and Microsoft’s One-Drive. Here’s how to limit how much resource the service uses, so...

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Why do my Spreadsheet Formulas Show Instead of the Result?

Have you ever been working on a spreadsheet and after entering a formula in a cell, you see the formula instead of the result? This article explains what happened and how you can get it back. This can happen in both Excel and Google Sheets, and I’ll explain how to...

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How to Automatically Lock Your PC When You Walk Away

You should always secure your computer by locking the screen when you walk away. But sometimes in a rush, we forget to lock it down. This article shows how to set up an automatic lock so that when you walk away from your computer, your screen will lock itself! Keeping...

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Should you buy a Chromebook, PC, or Mac?

While any Chromebook, PC, or Mac can be used for email and web browsing, it’s all the other activities that determine what is right for you. Read this article to get some insight into the advantages of each option. They are all computers but Chromebooks run the Chromium operating system whereas...

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Why You Shouldn’t Get Mad When You’re Asked to Reboot

Many users leave their computers on all the time so that they can receive automatic updates and security patches. This is a great strategy but leaves users with the question, “How long can you go without restarting your computer?” Read on to find out. During use, programs open and close,...

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Solid State vs Traditional Hard Drives – which should you choose?

No doubt, solid-state drives are fast, energy-efficient, and long-lasting. Unfortunately for users on a budget, solid-state drives can be too expensive to justify the cost. Here’s some advice on how and when to use solid-state drives (SSD) and how to stretch your budget on this crucial technology. Because SSDs are...

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7 Reasons Why You Should Replace Traditional Keys with card keys.

Card keys are fast replacing traditional keys in small businesses. Here are 7 reasons why it might make sense for your small business! Regular keys are bulky, clunky, and slowly going away. Have you been car shopping lately? You will be hard-pressed to find a new automobile that has a...

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Should my office be Wi-Fi only?

WiFi has come a long way in terms of speed and reliability. But there is still nothing like those irritating wires that are much faster and more reliable than interference-prone WiFi. Here are some guidelines for when you can go WiFi only and why you might not want to ditch...

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Should you back up your cloud data?

So you’ve put your data in the cloud. Should you back it up? The short answer is Yes!  This article explains why I think it’s essential.  We put data in the cloud for different reasons. Sometimes it is the primary access point for our data, and it’s in the cloud...

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How to Keep Passwords Safe in Email

No doubt, the most secure way to give someone a password or other confidential information is in person or over a private phone call. There are times, however, when you want to send a password or a bank account number via email simply because of the convenience. This article explores...

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Are Cell Phones Ruining Communications?

Technology is great. I believe in its development and use to the benefit of all humankind. However, there is a real danger that we are losing our ability to communicate with each other because of the way cell phones are way overused.  I’m sure you’ve seen the scenario. A set of...

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