Update Windows Operating System

It is important that you download and install the latest updates available for your computer’s operating system, software, and hardware.  Windows Update is an automated feature that scans your computer to see which system updates are required and provides you with a list of updates tailored just for your PC.  Often, these updates include critical security or stability patches that will fix known, chronic problems.  Recent Windows Service Packs have solved security issues, installed firewalls for your protection, and increased the stability of your system.

Microsoft Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2) free download includes a robust new firewall and a modest pop-up blocker.  Both of these tools can help you defend your computer.

Threats to your PC

In the Spring of 2009, the Conficker Worm spread across the internet infecting scores of unsuspecting PCs.  Computers that had the latest Windows Updates were immune to the Conficker Worm.  However, those that did not have the latest Virus Definitions and Windows Updates installed on their PCs were vulnerable and the Conficker Worm.  Worldwide panic erupted in April of 2009 as Conficker infected computers were expected to be overcome and incapacitated by the worm.

Run Regular Updates

If you followed our Computer Clean Up Steps, your computer is now clean, and up to date.  But, you will have to keep it up to date.  To do so means updating a number of files via downloads on the internet:

Update your Windows Operating System – download the appropriate files, patches, and service packs from microsoft .  Downloading and installing such files will ensure that your computer is up to date.  Often these files will fix a problem, security flaw, or other weakness in your operating system.  You can set up Automatic Windows Updates by going to your Control Panel and clicking on “Automatic Updates”.  You can also manually connect for an update by clicking on “Start”, “All Programs”, then click on “Windows Update”.  Upgrading to the latest version of Internet Explorer, including all the latest security patches, will help ensure you have the most current protection available.  Internet Explorer (IE) version 7 and newer includes new anti-phishingfeatures that help protect you.

windows update

Update Windows Vista

When using Windows Vista, you will notice a small light-blue icon in your system tray (the left-most icon in the photo).  This signifies that you have updates available for your Windows Vista operating system.  Vista makes it pretty simple for you – simply click on that icon and the Windows Update screen will pop up letting you know how many updates are available for download and when your system was last checked for updates.  Click on the INSTALL UPDATES button to commence updates.  It’s that simple.  Is your Windows Vista PC running slow?  Check out our tips on how to speed up Windows Vista .

Update Windows Vista

Update your Drivers

Drivers are the programs that connect your operating system with your hardware. Without these small applications, Windows would not know how to send a print command to your printer. Drivers are used for every internal part in your computer and all peripherals, like scanners, monitors and keyboards. They even enable functionality for unique devices like iPods and cameras.  In some circumstances, drivers become corrupted or will not install correctly. In these cases, access the device manager and click on “uninstall”. Once the driver is uninstalled, you will be able to reinstall the driver with the latest compatible drivers.

For more detailed information and help, check out our Update Drivers Section.

If you need help in finding a device driver, visit these websites:

>>Continue to our next step: Backup your Data

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