Top Windows Questions I Get Asked As An IT Professional
Something that many of you may not know about me is that I work in the IT field as an engineer so I think it’s safe to say that I know my way around the Windows operating system. Because of my job title, I get a lot of people asking me Windows-related questions personally.
I thought that it would be a great idea to summarise some of the most common questions I get asked in an article to reach a wider audience. As always, if you have any questions, fire them in the comments and I’ll try my best to answer them.
What Antivirus Software Do You Recommend?
One of the most common questions I get asked is about what Antivirus software I recommend for Windows. I get asked this question so often, that I had time to perfect an answer, but the answer depends on a number of circumstances such as whether you are buying as a business or for a home.
If it’s for home use then Windows Defender is more than capable of being your solution. It’s strong, built by Microsoft and it has been recommended as a top product by the independent antivirus test institute AVTEST.
If you are buying for business, I would recommend a more business-suitable antivirus solution such as Sophos.
On the other hand, if you are after more of a feature-packed security solution, which includes features such as website advisers which will show you if a website is dodgy before even clicking it and other features. There are paid alternatives available, such as Bitdefender Total Security.
Windows Defender is more than capable of being a reliable solution, but you have to remember that it’s just a basic program, therefore, I would recommend downloading and installing Malwarebytes and setting it to free on-demand mode and using it every so often. It will provide that extra layer of security.
Do you Recommend Upgrading To Windows 11?
It’s very easy for me to say yes, but that would be a very vague answer, especially as I don’t know what device you are planning to use it on. I mean, not all devices are compatible with the system, particularly if it’s an older computer or laptop.
To give you an honest answer, I would need to ask you some questions such as why are you asking, are you planning to upgrade your device and so on. It’s questions like this that will help me provide you with a solid answer.
Personally, I think Windows 11 is a snappy operating system with a beautiful interface. I’ve been testing Windows 11 since before it was released to the public and I really liked it from day one. Although there were some things I thought should be improved. You can check out my full review here.
Why Is My Computer So Slow?
Another frequent question I get asked is; Hey Dom, My computer is slow and has been acting up lately, do you know why? The short answer is NO! I don’t know. When computers slow down and start “acting up”, there may be several different reasons for this and without having a look at the computer it will be very difficult to give you a straight answer. I mean, I could potentially ask some follow-up questions, but the best way to determine the issue is by actually having a look.
As I mentioned before, there are a number of reasons why your computer is underperforming. The solution can be as simple as checking for Windows Updates, yes I know they can take a while to install but they have to be done to ensure your device is running smoothly and most importantly, securely. I can’t stress this enough! I happen to have a relative, who religiously refused to install updates because he thought that they were a waste of time and made the computer run slowly, that’s until he actually came to me for help after Firefox stopped displaying web pages properly. It turned out that he installed some ancient copy of Firefox he had on a CD that came with a computer magazine from 2009, and this was in I wanna say 2015 or even 16! Now, this relative wasn’t very technical and he got the magazine because of some software that came with it. After explaining why it’s not a good idea to use software off an old CD and to download it directly, he allowed me to update his PC and it worked very smoothly after.
This sort of approach happens more often than you can imagine, that’s why I’m happy that newer versions of Windows install updates automatically. I can’t count the number of times I was on someone’s computer and it had a mountain load of updates due.
It’s also worth checking to see what apps you have running in the background as some apps may be taking up all your system resources, although before closing down any apps, I would recommend googling the name of the app first so that you know what you’re shutting down. This handy guide from Windows Central will walk you through the process.
It’s also worth checking whether you are running out of storage space, you can do this by simply going to “This PC” in File Explorer. If you are running out of space, your PC may slow down, so you will need to delete unused files and maybe run a disk clean-up.
My Computer Isn’t Turning On Anymore, Can You Advise?
This is a question I get asked more than you can imagine! With computers becoming cheaper in general, small issues do arise from time to time. Thankfully, the fix is sometimes simpler than you would expect.
If your computer stops turning on for some reason, the first thing you should do is disconnect anything that may be connected. This includes your, mouse, keyboard, accessories and any cables connected to your computer, that includes the power cable too! If it’s a notebook with a removable battery, remove that too and press and hold the power button for 30 seconds, sometimes, I do this for around a minute or so. Then connect everything back up and try turning it on again.
If it works, success! If not you will need to dig deeper. One way is by seeing whether the indicator light flashes in a pattern as they represent error codes, such as battery failure. This will help tremendously during troubleshooting. If you get to this stage, I highly recommend taking your device to a local computer repair shop for them to take a look to see what’s going on.
What Browser Do You Recommend?
When it comes to browsers, I’m probably the worse person to ask or maybe even the best, not sure on that one, I’ll let you tell me down in the comments section. Anyway, I can’t seem to stick to using a browser, I’m always switching. Over the past 5 or so months, I’ve been using Chrome religiously. However, I recently moved over to Microsoft Edge and I kinda like it! Not only does it perform well, but the interface is beautiful and clean.
There are many opinions online on what the best browser is, however I think that they should be ignored, that includes my own opinion! I can say that I like Edge, but you should use the browser that you feel comfortable using as long as it’s supported, unlike Internet Explorer. You may find this surprising but I know people who still try to use Internet Explorer today when support has ended! At the end of the day, browsers are free to download, so why don’t you download a few and just start using them! You will eventually find one that you are comfortable with and enjoy using.
To summarise my post, I wanted to say that I can write a book on all of the questions I get asked in regards to Windows, there are just so many of them and I wanted to keep this post sweet and short.
If you have any Windows Questions, feel free to fire them in the comments section and I will do my best to answer them.