Free Computer Help

Often, your computer technical problems can be solved without getting on the phone and calling a help desk. It all depends on your willingness (or courage) to find and fix minor problems yourself. While I don’t necessarily recommend tackling major computer problems without expert assistance, I do believe that you can find solutions that you can indeed fix yourself. Here are some helpful, free websites that offer technical assistance of all sorts. I recommend that you look at at least one or two of them. They are friendly places, willing to share their expertise with you. When you have invested in a computer, it pays to learn as much as you can about how it, along with software and other peripherals work. So check out these websites!

Answers that Work . The tech gurus here state that 65% of computer problems are caused not by viruses but by the programs that are running in your system’s background. The advice here about problems is ample and varied. They provide a task list that give information about a background program’s usefulness (or not), and they provide removal procedures when recommended. But that is just one feature of the technical help at this site. It provides a large reference library with answers that you download and have handy to read offline. It provides hot tips, useful downloads, and the latest virus information. If you need a driver for a program you’ve installed, just come to this website and you’ll likely find it here—eliminating the need to search the entire Internet trying to find what you are looking for.

Five Star Support . The site bills itself as a “Computer Learning Community” and indeed it lives up to its billing. The advice given covers Windows, Linux, Internet Explorer, Outlook Express, AOL, networking issues and more. You can find tutorials for dozens of issues; it has a community bulletin board where members help members solve tech problems; answers to frequently asked questions; and the site provides a free monthly newsletter full of helpful tips. I liked the fact that a nontechnical person (such as me) could understand the help provided. A novice will feel welcomed here, and will not be led astray with incorrect information. That’s because tech experts share what they know. A site worth bookmarking.

Computer Hope . Another website that offers its services freely, allowing you to access a large database of computer-related information. There is nothing fancy on this website, but if you want to troubleshoot your computer problems, this is a nice place to start to search for answers.

Tech Support Guy Another resource for free help, this site opens its forums for you when you register for free. No gimmicks, just answers that you have been searching for.

Suggest A Fix Most of the websites listed this week use the expertise of a community of site members to share solutions. This website does not have as extensive a database of technical answers, but it may be all you need. You won’t know until you review one or two of the sites mentioned in this week’s column.

Protonic. Get personalized answers to your tech problems fast—via email. Just register to log in . This site offers a free newsletter emailed to you weekly. Protonic is an all-volunteer help site, as are many of the others listed above.

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~ by IndianaDunesPoet on May 13, 2005.

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