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Traveling? Remember to Take Alexa With You

“Alexa, what’s my schedule today?”

“Alexa, tell me the weather for this week.”

“Alexa, lock the house and set the thermostat to away mode.”

“Alexa, set a timer for 10 minutes”

“Alexa, what’s the nearest coffee shop?”

If you have an Amazon Echo, Echo Dot, Fire TV, or other device with Alexa on it, chances are you’ve gotten pretty used to Alexa’s help.

After all, Alexa can help you with almost anything you could ask of her.

This is especially true if you have a house full of Alexa speakers and have taken advantage of all the smart home devices like smart coffee makers, locks, thermostats, and lights.

But if you’re heading off for summer vacation, a fall camping trip, or a long-distance family visit this Christmas, you don’t want to be without Alexa while you’re away from home.

After all, she can get you directions, give you the weather, play music, be a personal concierge, or even stay in control of your smart home devices from across the country.

How to Bring Alexa Along

Believe it or not, you can bring your Echo device with you anywhere and use it just as you would at home. Just make sure it’s connected to the Wi-Fi where you’re staying.

If you’re flying, though, or just don’t want to risk traveling with your Echo, you can still use Alexa on your iOS or Android phone.

Just open the Alexa app, tap the logo in the center at the bottom of the screen, and talk to Alexa just like you would at home.

Control Your Home From Anywhere

Even when you’re not at home, you can still control your smart devices at home with Alexa from anywhere, whether you’ve brought along your Echo or if you’re just using your phone.

Here’s some tasks you can give here while you’re away:

  • If you have a friend taking care of your pets while you’re gone, unlock your doors for them and lock them again when they leave. Who “hides” keys under the mat anymore anyways?
  • Adjust your thermostat on your ride home to make sure you walk in to a comfy environment.
  • Turn lights on or off at random, creating the illusion that someone is home and therefore reducing your chances of burglary.

Stream Music

If where you’re staying doesn’t have any music streaming options, Alexa’s got you covered.

Just connect your Echo to the Wi-Fi where you’re staying and search for music as you normally would.

Listen to music from specific artists or albums or listen from you own stations or playlists while you get ready for the day, make dinner, or sleep.

Streamline Your Mornings

Picture this: Alexa wakes you up with an alarm at 8:30, reads you today’s itinerary and weather forecast, plays your morning wake-up playlist while you get ready for the day, then orders an Uber for you at 10:00 to get you downtown – all without you saying a word.

More than just a fancy alarm clock, Alexa can streamline your whole morning routine.

Just set up routines for her before you go, give her your itinerary for the week, and you’re good to go.

Your routines can string together any list of commands in any order. Just tell her what you want to do and when, and your vacation just got a lot less stressful. Pretty awesome, I know.

Mobile Concierge

Alex can also be your personal concierge on your trip.

Need a place for donuts and coffee in the morning? She’s got it.

Want some Friday night pizza but don’t know where to go? Just ask.

Don’t know where the best gas prices are near you? She does.

If you’re bringing along an Echo, just make sure you update its location in the settings in the Alexa app. Go to Settings > [speaker name] > Device location.

If you’re heading out on vacation, make sure to bring Alexa with you – you’ll be so thankful you did.

If you don’t have an Echo yet…what are you waiting for?

While it may seem a bit intimidating at first, buying and setting up an Echo isn’t nearly as much trouble as it seems, and what little hassle it may be is so worth it.

You’ll wonder how you ever lived without it!

If you’d like some more tips for vacationing with Alexa, help getting started with Alexa, or would just like to share you vacation experience, feel free to send me an email at christian@calibre-cs.com.

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Why Ordinary Antivirus Fails To Protect Your PC

What antivirus software “protects” your computer?

Some of the common ones I see on client computers are:

  • Norton
  • McAfee
  • Trend Micro
  • BitDefender
  • VIPRE
  • AVG
  • Avast
  • Avira
  • Microsoft Security Essentials or Windows Defender
  • ESET NOD32

Bad news, my friend.

I’ve got bad news if you’re using one of these products – your PC ISN’T as safe from viruses and malware as you believe.

Older isn’t better in this case

All of these antivirus programs use 25-year-old technology to block viruses and malware.  It’s called virus definitions.

Multiple times every day, these software manufacturers push updated virus definitions to your computer.  It’s basically a list of known bad threats they have discovered that shouldn’t be allowed on your PC.

Two Flaws

I’m sure you can see the two major flaws with this.

First, it’s impossible to keep the list on your computer up-to-date. 

Cybercriminals are always writing new scripts to attack computers. 

It’s only after these new viruses are released on the Internet and have done their damage that antivirus vendors know they exist, reverse engineer how they work, and add them to the “bad list.” 

This process can take days or even weeks – leaving your computer completely unprotected.

Second, it’s easy to bypass the list.

Hackers know how these lists scan incoming files to determine whether it is good or bad, whether it should be allowed or blocked. 

So they modify their code just enough so your antivirus software doesn’t recognize it as being malicious – simply because it’s not on “the list” in the virus definitions database.

Think of it as using a fake ID.

Use Technology To Fight Technology

What’s the solution?

Fortunately, there is a new antivirus software that utilizes the latest technology to combat against all types of virus and malware infections without using a list.

This antivirus protection stops any threat – known or unknown – from damaging your computer. 

How?

It uses artificial intelligence and machine learning to determine if the actions a particular file or program is performing are normal or malicious.  If it’s malicious, it immediately shuts it down.

There are no outdated virus definition lists and no days or weeks of your computer being vulnerable.

I’ve Seen It Work

I installed this new protection on a client’s computer in late October.  On New Year’s Eve, while I was vacationing in Arizona, I received an email alert that the Cybersecurity Antivirus had stopped a hidden, malicious file stored in the computer’s recycle bin from encrypting all her files and rendering her computer inoperable.

The report showed exactly where the file was located and specifically what files on the computer it was trying to modify.

Because it immediately quarantined it, this client didn’t experience any problems.  And more importantly, she didn’t have to shell out any money for a virus removal.

You Decide

Antivirus software MUST be installed on your computer.  Anything is better than nothing.

But is it smart to use antiquated technology that doesn’t really protect your computer from the latest threats? 

You spend between $0 and $100 for antivirus “protection,” but end up having to spend $100-$200 more to clean up your PC when that “protection” fails you (and it will).

 Alternatively, the Cybersecurity Antivirus protection can keep your computer safe and keep money in your pocket for less than $150 a year.
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How to Test and Optimize Your Internet Speed

Clients frequently call me complaining their Internet is running slow.

Web sites take longer than they should to load. Streaming videos start, stop, start, and stop – making it impossible to enjoy entertainment on their PC or smart TV.

I’d like to provide you some tips on how you can test and optimize your Internet speed.

Know Your Numbers

First, it’s important to know what Internet speed you’re paying for from your Internet Service Provider.

Unfortunately, many providers don’t clearly identify this on your monthly bill, disguising it with fancy names like “Extreme Internet” or “Ultra Internet.” You may have to search their website to get determine the exact speed (such as 100Mbps) you’re subscribed to.

Test … And Test Again

After you know what speeds you’re paying for, you should run several Internet speed tests. I recommend using www.speakeasy.net/speedtest and www.speedtest.net.

Keep in mind these tips when testing your connection:
• Only run a speed test when you’re not doing anything else on the Internet. Otherwise, your results won’t be accurate.
• Run speed tests at different times of the day. Network congestion can cause slow Internet speeds.
• If possible, run at least one test with your computer connected directly to your cable modem instead of through your router. This will help you determine if your router may be causing problems.
• Use multiple computers to run the speed tests – but not at the time same. This can pinpoint a problem with your computer or Internet browser instead of with your Internet connection.
Reboot

If your speed test results are significantly lower than what you’re paying for, you should reboot both your cable modem and router. Unplug the power cord from both devices, wait about two minutes, then plug them back in – cable modem first.

This often clears up any “junk” clogging up your Internet pipeline.

After about five minutes, you can run another speed test to see if your connection has improved.

Change Browsers

The program you use to surf the Internet can make all the difference in the world.

I recommend using Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox instead of Microsoft Edge or Internet Explorer.

Chrome and Firefox typically load websites much faster, are significantly safer, and encounter fewer problems than other browsers.

Regularly Tune-Up Your PC

Junk builds up on your computer with regular use. Cookies and other files can cause your computer to run slower, especially on the Internet.

It’s important to perform regular maintenance on your computer, including clearing out junk and temporary files, running virus scans, and defragmenting your hard drive.

Visit https://www.calibreforhome.com/2013/05/9-tips-to-keep-your-computer-running-smoothly-2/ for 9 tips to keep your computer running smoothly.

Make A Call

If you’ve taken all of these steps and your Internet still is slower than a snail, you’ll most likely need to call either your Internet Service Provider or a computer professional or both.

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How to Create Strong, Easy-To-Remember Passwords

Do you use “123456” as your password for any websites? How about “qwerty”? Maybe 123456789?

If you do, you’re not alone. In fact, nearly 1,000,000 people use those passwords.

But there’s a problem.

Each of those can be cracked in less than a millisecond, leaving you and your personal information exposed to data thieves.

So what can you do to stay more secure, but still be able to remember your passwords?

Don’t Reuse Passwords

Using the same one or two passwords for everything drastically reduces your personal security. Obvious, right?

Maybe, but that doesn’t stop over 80% of people from reusing passwords. Instead, use a unique password for each website you visit.

Most people can’t remember that many passwords, so I recommend using a password management service like LastPass to safely store your passwords for you. It can even generate passwords that are practically impossible for computers to guess.

Use Longer Passwords

Hackers don’t type in passwords one at a time. Instead, they often get millions of them at once from data breaches. They target the short passwords first and, with enough passwords to compare, they’re able to decrypt thousands of them in just a couple of hours.

If your password is 8 characters or longer, however, there’s a good chance it will be overlooked.
Hackers don’t want your password: they want as many as they can get in the shortest time possible.

Assuming it is not a common password such as “password123,” each additional character over eight could potentially add days, months, years, or even decades to the time it would take an algorithm to crack, making your password very unappealing to hackers.

I suggest using passwords with at least 10 characters to keep yourself off hackers’ radar.

Use Sentences as Passwords

Which is easier to remember: “Tl|_|,BwwB2R” or “My favorite kind of pie is chocolate!”?

The latter, of course.

However, you don’t want to use real words, as they are easily cracked.

Instead, use only the letters from your sentence as a password.

In this instance, “My favorite kind of pie is chocolate!” turns into “Mfkopic!.”

If you’re feeling clever, you could even change “pie” to “3.14” (pi = 3.14, in math terms), then the “1” to a “!”. This leaves you with “Mfko3.!4ic!” – a password which cannot be easily guessed and would take 200 million years to crack.

As long as you avoid using common words or phrases, this simple technique will keep you much more secure than most complex, hard to remember passwords.

Remember: a password that is hard for you to remember is not always hard for a computer to guess.

 

 

Here are some resources to help you create strong passwords, along with some cool facts and information:

Helpful graph for remembering long passwords (Stanford Password Policy):

http://bit.ly/stanfordpasswordpolicy

6 techniques for creating stronger passwords:

http://bit.ly/6techniques

Most commonly used passwords of 2016:

http://bit.ly/commonpasswords2016

Common passwords, plus helpful tips and tricks to keep yourself safe:

http://bit.ly/telegraphpasswords

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3 Ways To Extend Your iPhone Battery Life

I replaced the battery in my iPhone 6 at the start of marching band season in August. Long days on the road at competitions meant not being near an electrical outlet to charge my phone.

And usually my phone needed charged by noon each day, even with minimal use.

By early-October, though, I noticed my iPhone’s battery life and overall performance seemed sluggish. Even with the new battery.

Letters were slow to appear on the display when typing text messages. Snapchat took forever to open. The camera took 10 seconds or more to process the photo I just took, leaving me to wonder if I’d captured the moment.

As my frustration and impatience grew with my obsolete iPhone, I become more and more tempted to fork out the money for the new iPhone 8 or iPhone X.

But I didn’t (and still haven’t).

Then, just five days before Christmas, Apple finally admitted to intentionally slowing down the older iPhones – to prolong the life of the devices, they said.

Basically, Apple says that as the lithium-ion batteries in the phones age, they’re unable to provide the necessary power for the iPhone to function properly. This could cause unexpected shutdowns or random freezes.

Through software updates, they throttle performance on the iPhone 6, 6s, SE, and 7.

Besides being a disgruntled iPhone user who doesn’t want to shell out $1,000 for the newest model, what can you do?

Here are three easy ways to improve and prolong your older iPhone’s battery life:

Use Low-Power Mode

Low-power mode forces your iPhone to conserve as much power as possible by shutting off all non-essential features.

According to Apple, it could offer you up to three extra hours of time before needing to charge your phone.

To enable this setting:
1. Tap Settings.
2. Tap Battery.
3. Move the Low Power Mode slider to on (green).

NOTE: Be aware that this feature turns off many useful features, including push email notifications, the ability to use Siri by voice command, and some visual effects.

Lower screen brightness

Lighting your display drains the battery the most. Keeping it at a reduced level will help prolong time between charges.

To manually adjust the screen brightness:
1. Tap Settings.
2. Tap Display & Brightness.
3. Move the Brightness slider as far to the left as your eyes will allow you to clearly see content on your screen.

Alternatively, you can enable Auto-Brightness. This setting lets your iPhone automatically determine the appropriate level of brightness based upon the ambient light conditions at the time.

To turn on Auto-Brightness:
1. Tap Settings.
2. Tap General.
3. Tap Accessibility.
4. Tap Display Accommodations.
5. Move the Auto-Brightness slider to on (green).

Limit background app refresh

Some apps are set to update their content even when you’re not using them. The benefit is you’ll have new content immediately when you open the app. The drawback is less battery life.

To turn off background app refresh:
1. Tap Settings.
2. Tap General.
3. Tap Background App Refresh.

From here you have several options.

You can manually turn off individual apps from refreshing automatically by moving the slider to the left (off/gray).

Or you can turn off all apps from refreshing by tapping the Background App Refresh at the top and selecting Off.

If these suggestions don’t help extend your battery life, you can either have your battery replaced or, if you’re excited to upgrade to the newest iPhone, you can purchase the iPhone 8 or iPhone X. – and then do this all again in two more years!

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Thanksgiving Thoughts and Black Friday “Bargains”

Thanksgiving Thoughts

“There’s one thing I should be … giving up now, and that’s worryin’ about life.”

Those lyrics from Tim McGraw and Faith Hill’s first collaborative album resonated with me as I began writing this column.

This week is Thanksgiving. The one day of the year we intentionally set aside to be grateful for all the blessings in our lives. It’s a day when we should quit worryin’ about life and focus on the good.

Here are just a few things I’m thankful for:
• The opportunity to get up each morning, breathe in the fresh air, and work out at the gym
• A loving, supportive family who is always there for me
• Each of you, the readers of this column, I can serve by providing practical advice and useful tips to help you better understand and use technology
• My three dedicated staff members – Christian, Cai and Scott – who help make Calibre the company it is
• The privilege of working with the PCHS Marching Tigers. Music is a wonderful thing and working with a dedicated group of young people is so inspiring.

I could list dozens more. I bet you could too.

What’s on your list of thanks?

I encourage you to take just 5 minutes today and write out some things you’re grateful for. For that short period of time, I guarantee you’ll stop “worryin’ about life.”

Black Friday “Bargains”

If you’re looking for a cheap laptop this Black Friday, Best Buy’s selling one for only $99.99.

But before swiping your credit card to make that purchase, you might want to consider if you’re okay with throwing your hard-earned money away.

(How many hours do you have to work to make $100?)

This steal-of-a-deal laptop can barely be called a computer. It’s hardware components are almost the lowest you can get.

It’s 2 gigabytes of memory is painfully inadequate to run the Windows 10 operating system.

The 32 gigabytes of storage capacity leaves you unable to install future, required updates to the Windows 10 operating system. This means you’ll be bombarded with constant pop-up warnings to install updates that you can’t install because there’s no room on the PC to do so.

So after about six months of use, your $100 laptop is now a useless heap of plastic.

Why do computer manufacturers and big box retailers sell these “bargain” PCs?

To appeal to people who only look at price when buying them.

I’d encourage you to skip the Black Friday “deals” on computers because most of them will cost you more in the long-run for repairs and updates in order to make them last.

An investment in a good, quality computer may cost a little more up-front, but you’ll spend less overall and you’ll have a faster, easier-to-use, and more problem-free PC.

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Take Your Old, Slow Computer And … Speed It Up

The October 31st deadline was approaching.

Jan, a busy local business professional, knew she needed to do something quickly about her frustratingly slow, five-year-old Dell computer. She depends on her PC every day to serve her clients and employees.

Her time is pressed from early morning to late evening between a constantly ringing cell phone with calls from clients and employees needing her assistance, numerous visits to client homes and offices, and time-critical meetings to meet a variety of important deadlines.

Her painfully slow computer hampered her ability to efficiently conduct her business. She could turn it on, log in, and fix a cup of coffee before it was ready to be used.

Having read my warnings about the dreadful Windows 10 operating system, Jan called me seeking advice about buying a new Windows 7 desktop or if there was another way to speed up her sluggish PC.

Fast forward to last Thursday night at the Gibson County Chamber of Commerce Annual Banquet.

“My computer is so much faster!” Jan excitedly shared with me. “It’s so nice to be able to turn it on and it’s ready just like that.”

Ready in 30 seconds!

What did I do that now makes Jan’s computer ready to use in only 30 seconds?

I installed a new solid state hard drive and doubled the amount of memory.

An affordable combination that significantly improves performance and adds additional life to an otherwise old PC.

Until recently, most computers shipped with mechanical hard drives. These drives are fairly reliable, cheap, and provide plenty of room to store pictures, documents, and music.

But as prices have dropped, solid state hard drives are becoming more popular – both in new computers and as reasonably priced upgrades for older ones.

Why consider upgrading your hard drive?

If you have an older computer that works well but crawls at a snail’s pace, you should seriously consider upgrading to a solid state hard drive.

It’s cheaper than buying a new computer, allows you to keep your existing operating system (which is hopefully Windows 7), and gives you the speed boost you desire.

What makes them better?

Without getting too technical, solid state hard drives (SSDs) perform better than mechanical hard drives in four primary ways:

1. Your operating system and programs load quickly because of faster read/write speeds to and from the hard drive.
2. The likelihood of a failure of the hard drive is significantly reduced because there are no moving internal components.
3. They consume less energy and operate more quietly. If you’re using a solid state hard drive in a laptop, you’ll notice you can use it on battery power much longer.
4. Fragmentation of files is less, which means your computer can find necessary pieces of data faster – translating in to faster performance.

A painless upgrade

Upgrading your current computer to a solid state hard drive is fairly easy. Unless you’re having other software-related problems with your computer, your existing hard drive can be imaged over to the new solid state hard drive.

All your programs, files, settings, desktop background – everything – will be copied over exactly as is to the new hard drive. You won’t even notice anything’s changed – other than the speed of your computer.

If you’re tired of wasting time waiting to use your desktop or laptop – and it’s otherwise working well for your needs – consider upgrading to a solid state hard drive.

It’s almost like having a new computer – without the cost!

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How To Secure Your Online Accounts From Hackers

What do your online banking website, your email account, and Facebook all have in common?

They all require you to log in. You’re prompted to enter your username and password to gain access.

As cybercriminals desperately seek to steal your personal information, they’ve gotten really good at cracking usernames and passwords.

Unfortunately, this basic level of security is no longer effective on its own to prevent others from accessing your personal online accounts. This leaves you at serious risk for identity theft, fraud, and other scams.

In today’s column, I would like to briefly show you a foolproof way to keep hackers from breaking into your online accounts – even if they know your password.

2 is the magic number

Two-factor authentication is an advanced method of website security. It forces someone trying to gain access to a website to prove they have the right to enter.

Two-factor authentication requires two different forms of identification, both of which must be correct, to successfully be allowed entry.

Compare it to completing a transaction at the license branch. You’re often required to provide two documents to prove your identity – such as a birth certificate proving you are who you say you are and a utility bill proving your mailing address.

What you know & what you have

Tech expert Leo Notenboom describes two-factor authentication like this:

“Authentication has almost always been in the form of something you know – for example, a password. … Two-factor authentication adds something you have to the requirements to prove you are you. … You must possess something specific that is completely unique to you and only you.”

Google What?

The Google Authenticator app makes setting up two-factor authentication extremely easy.

1. Install the app on your smartphone.
2. Enable two-factor authentication on the website you wish to secure, such as Facebook or your online bank account.
3. Associate the Google Authenticator app with your account by either typing in a code or scanning a QR image.

Once you complete this process, the Google Authenticator app will begin displaying a random six-digit number every 30 seconds. These numbers are completely unique to your account and your cell phone.

Now when you (or anyone) attempts to log in to that particular website, it will prompt for the username/password AND the random number displayed in the Google Authenticator app on your phone at that time to be entered.

Without both correct pieces of information, access will be denied.

Other Methods

You can also use simple text messaging to set up two-factor authentication, if you don’t have a smartphone or don’t wish to use Google Authenticator.

Most websites offer you the option to configure your cell phone number as a verification method.

When you (or anyone) attempts to log in, a text message with a random code is sent to your cell phone. You enter that code, along with your password, to prove you’re authorized to access the site.

Securing your important online accounts with more than just a username and password is critical. Security breaches happen every day, even with “secure” websites.

Two-factor authentication provides the best way to keep unwanted intruders out of your personal accounts.

If you’d like more information about or assistance with setting up your accounts with two-factor authentication, feel free to call my office at (812) 386-8919 or email me at scott@calibre-cs.com.

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How Not To Get Locked Out Of Facebook And Other Online Accounts

“Hi, Scott.  I need your help,” the voice on the other end of the line greets.

“I’m locked out of my Facebook account and can’t get back in because I don’t remember my password.  Can you help me?”

While I happily try to assist, I know the chances for success are extremely low.

Facebook, Google and most other online services do not have a phone number you can call, speak to a live person, and have them reset your password.

Instead, your only option is to rummage through their web-based help documentation, submit an online form, and hope the requested information you provided is sufficient for someone to eventually send you instructions on how to get back into your account.

The majority of the time, this fails.

Why Account Recovery Fails

All online services provide you an easy way to recover lost passwords or regain access to your account.  The account recovery process typically involves sending an email to your email address or a text message to your cell phone.

So what’s the problem?

Most people never set up their recovery information in Facebook, Gmail, Pinterest, eBay, Amazon, and other commonly used websites.

Those who did when they first created their account seldom update their recovery information when their email address or phone numbers change.

How To Set Up Recovery Information

Each platform differs slightly in how to set up your account recovery information.  Here are links to instructions on how to do so on some of the most common websites:

Don’t Wait!

Avoid the frustration of forever losing access to your online accounts.  Invest a few minutes right now to take these important steps:

  • If you don’t already have a second email address, set up an alternate email address with Gmail (www.gmail.com).
  • Log in to each of your online accounts (Facebook, Gmail, Pinterest, eBay, etc.).  Configure your recovery options in each of them.
  • Associate your cell phone number, if you have one, with the account.
  • Set periodic reminders to make sure your account recover information is kept current.

 

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How You Can Avoid The “I Wish I Would Have” Lament I Hear Frequently From Clients

“I’ve not talked to one person who has had anything good to say about Windows 10,” Barbara expressed when she picked her laptop up Friday after having us perform our recommend bi-annual Windows 10 Check-Up Service.

“I figured Windows 10 wouldn’t be a bad operating system, but boy was I wrong!  I wish I would have gotten a computer with Windows 7 instead,” she lamented.

Oops!

I hear regrets like this from clients almost every week.

They didn’t know any better when they were shopping for a new PC.  They just bought what they saw on the store shelf or mistakenly took advice from a big box store sales geek and came home with a Windows 10 computer.

Only to quickly realize it was a mistake.

YOU don’t need to suffer like these unaware clients.  But you DO need to make a decision quickly to avoid that same fate.

Take a moment to answer these four questions:

  • Is your current computer more than five years old?
  • Is it running slow?
  • Are you having constant problems with it?
  • Have you been thinking about upgrading to a newer computer, but just haven’t bought one yet?

If you answered yes to one or more of those questions, it’s important you finish reading this column.

You Already Know This

Regular readers of this column know I strongly encourage you to stay with the Windows 7 operating system.  It’s time-tested, proven reliable, and easy-to use.

You’re familiar with it.  You know how to use it.  Your software programs and hardware devices work with it.  It’s a solid, mostly problem-free operating system.

The Dilemma

But effective October 31, 2017, Microsoft is forcing all PC manufacturers to stop selling new computers with Windows 7.

All new computers after that date – no matter where you buy one – will come with the problematic Windows 10.

(If you visit any of the big retail stores now – like Walmart, Best Buy, Staples, Office Depot, you will only find Windows 10 computers.  They only sell Windows 10 machines because they take their marching orders from Microsoft in the form of spiffs and other monetary kickbacks.)

Whether you buy a new desktop or laptop now at a big box store or wait until after October 31 to buy one anywhere is a bad decision – because of Windows 10.

The Raw Truth

When you buy a Windows 10 computer, you’re buying a PC that’s suffering from a terminal illness.

I’m sorry to use such a crude comparison, but I’m telling it like it is.

The way Windows 10 is configured right out of the box and with each forced update, Microsoft creates frustrating problems and errors on your computer requiring frequent, costly repairs and regular check-ups just to make sure your PC runs the way it’s supposed to.

I’ve written extensively in the past about the major issues with Windows 10 and don’t have room to explain them in-depth in this article.

I encourage you to download my free report “7 Frighteningly Dark Secrets Microsoft Desperately Doesn’t Want You to Know About Windows 10.”  It outlines many things that should concern you about Windows 10.

Visit http://www.caliibreforhome.com/windows10secrets.

What Choice Will You Make?

If you’ve been considering buying a new (or refurbished) desktop or laptop, you need to do so before the end of October.

I don’t want to see you, like Barbara, buy a computer you’ll hate – because it’s hard to use, requires regular visits to the PC doctor, and seriously invades your privacy without your knowledge or consent.

Independent computer companies – like Calibre Computer Solutions – can still order new and some refurbished computers with Windows 7.  But the absolute deadline is October 31.

I invite you to call me today to discuss your options.

Maybe you don’t need a new computer – just a good tune-up and upgrade of your existing one might make it last longer.

But if you do need a new one, you don’t want to wait until it’s too late and you’re stuck with only getting Windows 10.  It will be a purchase you’ll regret for years to come.