It helps to work with a company that has a service contract with Dell. Dell has a great online set of classes that will help you become a certified Dell Technician.
People usually think, when something breaks a laptop, it’s time to just buy a new one. Is this true? What parts are affordably replaceable?
Well, it would depend on what breaks and how old the laptop is. If it is something like a broken keyboard, it can be easily replaced but if the LCD was broken/cracked it is more difficult to replace on your own. However, i just replaced the LCD screen of my girlfriend’s laptop for only $60.00 from parts found online.
How can you tell if it’s the hardware or the software that is broken on a computer?
It is pretty tricky to determine whether or not a problem is caused by software or hardware unless it’s something obvious like a cracked LCD screen. If your computer has built in Diagnostics like Dell has on their laptops, it makes it easier to determine if there is a hardware failure or not.
Is it better for someone to buy their computer or build one? How hard would it be for a novice to learn to build their own computer?
I would say it’s more beneficial to build a desktop by themselves. So, they can customize it to their own specifications. However, someone who does not have any computer experience may find it very confusing.
If someone wanted to buy a computer for online gaming, what specs on the computer should they look for? What are your suggested minimums?
Well, this is all dependent on what kind of gaming the customer likes to play. Computers are like cars. You can buy cars that are efficient without any bells or whistles or you can get luxury cars with more speed and accessories. Some of the things needed for a gaming computer today are as follows:
First, would be a decent processor/motherboard with plenty of memory. Once again, it would depend on how much you want to pay. There are single, dual, Quad processors and up with a price increase with each step.
Also a requirement for a gaming computer is a graphics card which can handle today’s graphic technologies. Once again there are basic graphics cards and there are graphics cards with all the bells and whistles which do cost more.
You will also need a sound card with surround sound and an upgraded power supply to power it all. It can be very intimidating to the novice shopper. You can look at Dell’s website and look at the Alienware model for some basic specs on a gaming computer.
With computer hardware continuously needing drive updates, how is one to keep track of them all?
If you purchased your computer / Laptop from a manufacturer such as Dell, you can down load any model specific hardware (Bios) or firmware updates for the laptop or desktop system from the manufactures website.
What are some easy preventative measures people can take to help their hardware last?
One of the biggest causes for hardware failure is poor ventilation. This is usually caused by dust build up on chassis vents and fans. It isn’t recommended to use canned compressed air into these vents because compressed air can spin the internal fans faster than the fans capability. This can damage the fans.
What recent trend do you see getting bigger in the future?
I believe one of the trends in computers is going toward the smart phone kind of computing. With the introduction of the Iphone which can almost do everything a computer can do, i see the trend to go into smaller and more powerful phones.