Computer Hardware

Computer Hardware

Computer security

Computer security

Computer software

Computer software

 

Tag Archives: CPU

Threats and Protection Techniques

cyberthreatprevention_imgComputer security is that branch of information technology which deals with the protection of data on a network or a stand-alone desktop. As every organization is dependent on computers, the technology of its security requires constant development. Here are the different types of computer security.

Hardware Security

Threat
Even if the computer is not plugged into a network, a person can open its cabinet and gain access to the hard drives, steal them and misuse or destroy the data saved on them or, damage the device altogether. It is also necessary to remember that in case one dissembles his computer hardware, the risk of losing coverage of warranty becomes very high.

Protection
The security of computer hardware and its components is also necessary for the overall protection of data. If a stand-alone system contains some important or classified information, it should be kept under constant surveillance. Locking system for a desktop and a security chain for a laptop are basic security devices for your machine. Certain disk locks are available in various sizes, which control the removal of the CPU cover protecting internal components of the system.
For example, you will find disk/tape drive lock, computer case lock with cable and padlock, security cables, etc. A disk lock guards all the internal access points located on the CPU and protects them.

Software Security

Network Security
Computer networks are an integral part of any organization these days, as they facilitate the free flow of data and services to the authorized users. However, such networks also pose a security threat in case the data is classified and confidential, thus making network security a vital necessity.

Threats
As the data is available only for authorized users, it is possible for hackers to pretend to be one, by providing the correct user name and password. Computer network security can be disrupted or encroached in the following ways:

Denial of Service
Denial-of-service is meant to disable a computer or a network and can be executed with limited resources. It is one of the most common forms of attacks by hackers and can effectively disable the whole network of an organization. Denial of service attack makes a computer resource unavailable to its intended user.
To carry out this kind of attack, hackers generally flood a network or the access routers with bogus traffic. They also make attempts to disrupt connections between two machines and prevent individuals from accessing a service.

Trojan Horse
Trojan horse is common and one of the most potential threats to computer security. They are malicious and security-breaking programs, disguised as something which is considered as non-malicious by the security software. They are a useful tool for hackers who try to break into private networks. Hackers generally attach Trojan horse to a file, which triggers a virus or remotely controlled software, giving the hacker complete control over the computer.

Viruses and Worms
Viruses and worms are well-known for their destructive nature and the property of replicating themselves. They are basically pieces of computer program codes, which are written by hackers and other computer geniuses.

Sniffing
Sniffing is the act of intercepting TCP/IP packets while they are getting transferred on a network. The interception generally takes place through simple eavesdropping done by a hacker.

Protection

Firewall
It is one of the most essential type of network security in today’s world of Internet. Firewall is a filter that prevents fraud websites from accessing your computer and damaging the data. However, a firewall is not a great option for securing the servers on the Internet because the main objective of a server is granting access to unknown users to connect to various web pages.

Security Software
Along with firewall, try installing a good anti-virus and security software to enhance the security level of your computer system.
Data Security

Threat
Although uncommon, hardware malfunction can prove to be a major threat to your data in the computer. The life span of hard disks is always limited because of surrounding factors and this can amount to a severe loss of all your files saved on the disk, if there is no proper backup of those files made on any other system.
Protection

Keep Backup
It is important to avoid data and information loss in case of hard disk crashes. The only solution is to regularly keep backups of all the data on other media such as magnetic tapes, CD-ROM, etc. It is a good practice to store the media off-site and in case of a disk crash, restore the information from the backup media onto the new disk.
In case a backup media is not affordable, one should try to store the files on at least two different media devices. These media devices should be systematically kept at a place which is safe and secured, as the information contained may be confidential. People usually have backup for database files, spreadsheet files and large documents. As the technical constraints are always there, it is better to take regular backups, in order to avoid any loss of information.

Install a software program on your computer that will clear all the old, unused files and registry keys. It will also help to detect malware and save your computer from a severe damage caused by it. Keep your system in the loop of latest updates and security alerts or else, it will become vulnerable to security threats.
It is important to keep a record of technical support consultants and software documentations, like manuals and guides to make them accessible to the staff members of the company.

Computer Problems and Solutions

If you have a computer or PC, it will surely help in easing most of your problems. But with every computer comes along many headaches and complications, sooner or later. A computer is a machine and every machine breaks down sometime or the other. You do not need to run to the computer technician every time your PC crashes or is attached by a malicious software. If you know some simple solutions to the most common computer problems, it will help you save a lot of time and money. These glitches that can be solved by a common person like you and me in the world of computers.

There are many PC owners who think every time they face a problem with computer, they should contact professional help. True, but not every problem needs to be addressed by a computer expert.

How to Fix Computer Problems?

Problems with computer are divided into two groups, i.e., hardware problems and software problems. The hardware problems are related to the peripheral parts of the computer like the CD drive, hard disk, monitor, keyboard, etc. The software problems are more complicated. These problems include problems like modem problems, Windows not starting, drivers not found, etc. Understand what is causing the glitch and follow the standard procedure to solve the problem. The following are a few common problems and solutions to help you overcome the technical snag.

After Power Outage
Today there are many sudden power outages, voltage problems and spikes that can damage computers. These damages cause many technical and software snags and interrupt your work. This leads to loss of data, damage to the hardware, etc. due to sudden power outage. This is a solution to this trouble is use of uninterrupted power supply (UPS). The UPS can provide a constant flow of energy to the computer, even if you encounter a sudden power outage. This will provide you with ample time to save your data and shut down your PC, if needed.

Computer Performance has Slowed Down
You may notice your computer has slowed down considerably and even a simple command execution takes ages. This is because your computer is loaded with unnecessary files, fragmented data, corrupted registry, spyware programs, services, software, etc. that makes your computer slow down. Thus, you need to manage your programs and delete unnecessary data and software that you do not use or need, clean your registry regularly to help boost at least 30% of your computer performance speed.

No Sound from Speakers
You are in the mood to listen to some groovy music on your PC, but you get no sound from speakers, the solution to is to check the back of the computer and see if all the connectors are properly connected. The speaker or single stereo speaker plug should be put into the socket on the soundcard that has a mark Audio Out.

Computer Monitor Displays Fuzzy Images
A computer monitor is the display unit of the computer that is sensitive to electro-magnetic radiations. These electro-magnetic radiations are transmitted from the TV, radio, microwaves, dishwashers, washing machines, speakers, etc. Mobile phones transmit electro-magnetic radiations that is one of the main cause of monitor displaying fuzzy images. Thus, move away these disturbances away from the monitor and this problem with computer monitor will be fixed.

Computer Freezes with Blue Screen Hijacking Your Display
There are many problems that can cause your computer screen to freeze and blue screen to appear. This screen is called the Blue Screen of Death (BSOD). This may be due to a spyware or computer viruses that have affected your computer. You need to update your anti-spyware and scan your computer for any viruses. If your computer is free from any such malicious software, then you may need to update your hardware drive. A hardware drive that is not updated may cause the CPU to lock up and interrupt working of the computer. If you find the problem cropping up even after a hardware drive update, then you may need to increase computer RAM. When you increase the RAM, the computing power increases and you will also be able to avoid the computer freeze. At times, BSOD may appear due to critical errors in the driver, software or registry problems. Windows may have to repair or reinstall missing components. If you do not find any visible cause, it would be wise to call the computer technician.

Computer Reboots Itself Again and Again
Another common problem with computers. In order to fix the problem of rebooting itself again and again, you will need to check the hardware. You may have a faulty power supply, defective or dirty cooling fan, etc., that may cause the computer to reboot again and again. The dust that accumulates on the fan, makes it heat up faster and in order to cool down the computer automatically switches off. Thus, clean the fan and check for power supply. Following these simple steps will help you to solve these problems with computer.

Computer Makes Strange Noises
Noises and vibrations from your computer are a hardware problem. Many electronic parts can make high pitch noises. You need to switch off your computer and unplug it from the power supply. Now remove the case from the CPU and restart your computer. Locate the origin of noise and then switch off the computer and unplug it. It may be a faulty fan, loose wire or screw. This means you will need to call the computer technician to help you solve your problems with computer, regarding these type of problems.

Windows Having Problems in Shutting Down Properly
You may have come across the message ‘Windows Shutting Down’ instead of ‘It is now safe to switch off you computer’. This is because a program has not unloaded itself properly that makes the computer insist to run a scandisk the next time you switch on. You need to close all the programs before your shut down your PC and if it is not done, the computer waits for the program to close. It may happen you get the message ‘Do you want to shut this program down or wait’ or you may not. When you don’t get such a message it results in what we call the hanging of the operating system. The solution is not to install Direct X whenever you install a game. Most games have their version of Direct X that makes the files out of sync. Thus, install the latest version of Direct X and not the games version. You may need to also check USB devices, task scheduler, virus scanners, etc. and reinstall them if necessary. This will lead to correct installation and the problems with computer may reduce.

Computer Gives Error Messages on Start-up
Many times when you switch on you computer you see error messages on your screen. These messages may appear such as, abclink.xyz missing or damaged – press any key to continue. If you see this message, you need to press keys for about 8 to 10 times, before Windows actually resumes. This happens when you delete a program instead of actually un-installing it. If you wish to get rid of any program, go to Control panel —> Programs —> Programs and Features. Here, you will find a list of programs installed on your computer. Select the specific you wish to delete and click on Uninstall. The program will be removed from your system and next time you switch on your PC, you will not get any error messages saying a link is missing.

Low Virtual Memory
Do you keep getting an annoying message that says ‘system running low on virtual memory’? If yes, it means your computer is running short of RAM, that is, Random Access Memory. So, to solve this problem, you need to increase the size of your computer memory. Windows 7 users need at least 1 GB of RAM, Windows Vista needs 512 MB of Ram and Windows XP requires minimum 256 MB RAM. Visit your local computer dealer and purchase more memory from him. The dealer may even install the memory for you. This will help you get rid of low virtual memory.

You can avoid these problems if you are aware of the various steps needed for computer maintenance. You should read the manual given with computer before you begin using it. Yes, the manual may sound Greek to you, but it’s always better to know the simple precautions to be taken. The troubleshooting is not an easy task. If you do not understand anything or are still apprehensive about these troubleshooting, then it is a better idea to consult a computer technician. You have many articles on the Internet that help you find solutions to various problems with computer. You do not need to be genius to diagnose and troubleshoot a simple problem. Many times a bit of presence of mind and common sense will help you overcome obstacles of the technical world.

Computer Hardware Repair and Maintenance

What is computer hardware? Hardware components like the monitor, keyboard, CPU (Central Processing Unit), mouse, and other I/O (Input-Output) devices constitute a computer. The working of the monitor, keyboard, mouse, and I/O devices depends largely upon the CPU. Due to some minor causes, like loose connections or dust saturation, any of them can stop functioning.

Faults occurring in the CPU are most hazardous, as it has a very complicated structure. The CPU is an assembly of the motherboard, hard disk drive (HDD), random access memory (RAM), compact disc-read only memory (CD-ROM) drive, and the floppy drive. Unless you are well-acquainted with the CPU hardware, it is extremely difficult to pinpoint exactly where the fault has occurred. If any one of these components fail to perform, there are a few repair tips that can be followed. In order to view the circuitry inside the CPU, its casing has to be removed.

Motherboard
The entire functioning of the computer depends on this component. The processor chipset, that performs all the logical operations of the PC, is embedded in the motherboard. Ribbon cables, power supply, CPU, and RAM are the things to be checked first on the motherboard. Check if any of the ribbon cables or the power supply cord is loose. Check if the RAM chip has been misplaced from its slot. The CPU (chipset embedded in the board) will not show any marks on the outside if it is blown. The only way to check whether the CPU is working or not, is to test it by mounting it on the motherboard of another PC. The motherboard has a real-time clock, ROM BIOS, CMOS RAM, RAM sockets, CPU sockets or slots, cache RAM slots, keyboard controller, interrupts, internal connectors, and external connectors mounted on it. Do not tamper with these components, unless you know each and every one of it well. Do not touch the motherboard without turning off the power.

Hard Disk Drive (HDD)
Also known as hard drive, it is the long-term storage device of the system. If the hard drive cannot be detected, check the jumper setting. The jumper setting can change the mode of the hard disk from master to slave or vice-versa. Make sure the Windows version being used for partitioning is consistent. Check that each drive has been assigned a drive-type. Make sure the pin numbers of the plug are attached to the corresponding pin numbers of the socket. Do not force the plug into the socket with extra force, the pins may bend. If the plug is not fitting perfectly in the socket, try inserting it again by flipping it over. Do not attempt to open the hard drive without enough knowledge of its components.

Random Access Memory (RAM)
It is the temporary memory of the PC. The data in the RAM is erased when the computer is shut down. Check if the RAM is misplaced from its slot. While replacing the RAM in its slot, check the small niche at the center of the chip (the niche indicates how the RAM is supposed to be placed in the slot and may not be at the exact mid position of the chip-strip). Do not forget to secure the side clips that hold the chip in place. If you are unable to secure them, it means that the chip is not placed correctly in the slot.

Compact Disc-Read Only Memory (CD-ROM) Drive
Data stored on external storage device like compact discs (CD) is read by inserting the CD in the CD drive. If the CD drive is not functioning, check if the CD is scratched. If the CD works fine in another PC, check if the power cable of the former drive is loose. Check if the plug and socket pin numbers match. If the tray of the drive is not opening, right click on CD-ROM icon and select eject option. If the tray does not open, insert a straight thin metal pin into the edge and try to pull it open. Do not apply too much of force while doing so. Avoid connecting the CD-ROM drive on the same controller cable as the primary hard drive, this will slow down its performance.

Floppy Drive
If the floppy disk is not opening, try opening it in the floppy drive of another PC. If the disk does not open, then it is probably corrupt. If the disk is stuck in the drive, hold down the eject button for sometime or right click on floppy drive icon and select eject option. If the disk is still stuck, wiggle it up and down till it can be ejected or use tweezers to pull it out. Do not apply too much of force while doing so.

In order to avoid any kind of faults, following maintenance tips can be followed:

  • Do not let dust saturate on the motherboard. Clean it with a vacuum cleaner or a hand broom once in 2 to 3 months.
  • The hard drive mostly does not need any external cleaning, though by performing de-fragmentation and disk clean, it can be prevented from crashing.
  • In the case of the CD-ROM, do not pull the tray forcibly. Make use of the insert/eject button rather than pulling and pushing the tray.
  • Clean the tray once in a while. Do not keep any heavy object on the tray. Avoid running scratched or damaged CDs in the CD-ROM.
  • If the CPU fan is making too much noise, unmount it and oil the bearings.
  • Do not attempt to start the PC if the fan is not in a working condition.
  • If the fault persists, contact professional services. Also make a note of what exactly is happening when you start the PC. It makes the diagnosis a lot easier for the professional.

The CPU is the brain of the computer. Proper maintenance of the CPU, as well as all other components, enhances the computer performance.