1. Perform regular virus scans. At least once a week. We recommmend using Microsoft Security Essentials or Windows Defender as your antivirus program. It is free and just as accurate as any paid version.
2. Install, update and run Malwarebytes and Superantispyware scans on a regular basis. At least once a week.
3. Keep all your Acrobat products up to date. They have some of the biggest security holes. This includes Acrobat Reader and Flash.
4. Do not download free music. You will get a virus!!! If your system is crippled by a virus, a virus scan, data backup and Windows install will run approximately $190.00. You could buy 190 songs for that.
5. Backup your data, Backup your data, Backup your data, Backup your data. If your drive dies it will cost a minimum of $600.00 for data recovery. Average cost is closer to $1000.00. A 500GB external hard drive is about $100.00. This is a lot cheaper than a data recovery. Backup your data, Backup your data, Backup your data.
6. Do not surf the Web for porn.
7. Do not download pirated software.
8. Have your computer looked at twice a year. Treat your computer like a car. You do not wait for your car to break do you?
9. Backup your data.
10. Perform a disk cleanup and a defrag once a month.
11. Do not install registry cleaners, memory managers etc. The more you install into Windows, the slower it will run.
12. If you use a laptop, make sure that you use it on a hard surface at all times. Using it on a bed or couch will cause it to overheat and will cut the life of it in half.
13. For some reason a lot of people buy an external hard drive and move all their data to the external drive thinking that their data is backed up. Its not. That external drive will die one day. Then what? In order to have a "Backup" of your data it has to be in 2 places, so when one drive dies, as they all do, the data is still on the other drive. All "good" external drives come with descent backup software. This is what sets them apart. The software will "copy" all your data to the external drive so when one of your drives die, you still have all your data on the other.
14. As laptops get older, the screws that hold it together tend to get loose. Turn it over every 6 months and use a micro phillips screwdriver to tighten all the screws. A loose chassis can cause the memory to jar loose causing motherboard damage. Also, clean the CPU fan duct with a can of compressed air every few months.