Some of my
A little about my experience:
DCI Computers (my company) has been serving the New Orleans and Metairie area Since 1984. In the past DCI has had two different store fronts and up to eight employees at one time. These days I no longer maintain that amount of over head, nor do I any longer sell custom built industry standard computers. I now concentrate on providing quality On-Site Support. I have an approximate 90% success rate on service I take on. Not all PCs are worth fixing due to their age, or the cost to repair being near what you could spend for a new PC, unless perhaps you include the cost and time to re setup the new PC with your applications, peripherals and data.
I have a degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of New Orleans, minor in Computer Science. Should you desire more detail, or to get a better idea of my experience please visit DCI's Old large Web site by clicking "Here" - but bear in mind the information you are looking at there is very out dated! Some dated details on me personally can be found here. I sold custom built clone/industry standard PCs back in 1984 and until Katrina in 2005. I have been building and supporting PCs on a full time basis since before there was a Dell line, back when ComputerLand was the only big local outlet, before Windows existed, long before Gateway and CompUSA came and went. These are just facts, hopefully not to be confused as bragging. These stores were all much more successful from a financial stand point than I. I just offer personal one on one local service.
Advice: (as of Feb 2011)
Tip #1: How to easily protect your PC's
IMHO - The best method you can use to protection yourself from computer software related problems (which is the majority of the problems) is to create an image of each PC you own, when they are fully setup to your liking, by using an imaging program like Acronis True Image (a free version of which is available at Seagate DiscWizard) and an External USB type Hard Disk (Seagate or Maxtor brand - if you want to use the free version) 500GB $40), to store your image backups. Total cost under $100 and can be used to hold backup images of many PCs. The biggest problem with this is that you have to do the backup "BEFORE" you run into problems! Also note that such images can only be properly restored to the same computer or a very similar model PC. After you have an image backup (which you can recreate should your software setup change significantly) then you just need to backup your data on occasion. Most people backup data to external hard disk, or if their data is less than say 16 GB they can use USB memory sticks and hopefully rotate among a few such sticks occasionally and keeping at least one off-site. Automating the backup procedure is essential in order to insure such back ups get done. I often use such tools as SyncBackSE (free or pay version) or Fab's AutoBackup to automate backups. Configuring SyncBack is not for beginners. Another tool I highly recommend using on occasion is ERUNT (Emergency Recovery Utility) which basically allows you to maintain backups of the Windows registry. Granted windows has a registry restore utility, but the Windows version often fails, so I prefer to have access to my own registry backups. Another tool and method that has allowed me to repair many messed up Windows setup by allowing me to boot from a CD and access the remote windows setup is a free utility called the "Ultimate Boot CD for Windows" aka UBCD4W, but admittedly this is for advanced users only. All of these tools and methods you can find out more about by goggling them.
Tips #2: When buying an anti-virus anti-spyware type program pick one that does not cause you more problems than they potentially fix. Particularly stay clear of Symantec Antivirus products. I highly recommend Microsoft Security Essentials available for free at MS Security Essential I am recommending it not because it is free rather because I think it is the best at doing the job without getting in your way or slowing down your computer. I avoid more costly "Suite" versions other vendors offer as I find such suites to be too in your face and more than most users can handle or configure and just further slow a PC. If you want true added protection see tip #1 above and image your PCs setup.
I recently moved out to Metairie and while I have no formal store front some people prefer to save some money and drop off a computer for me to work on. I am located at 4620 Wilson Drive, Metairie, La 70003