Archive for the ‘IT Tips & Tricks’ Category

Green At Work

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22 April is earth day. It is time to think about how you can lower your carbon footprint at work. Here are some green practices that you can adopt to do so.

1. Computers are the Culprits:

Even in standby or hibernate modes computers use energy. To reduce energy consumption by 60 to 70%, set your computer to sleep mode when not in use.

Green Fact: Almost two-thirds of the energy used by a computer is for the monitor, so turn it off when not in use.

2. Disconnect to Stop the Drain:

Laptop and mobile phone charger draw energy (up to 95%) when they are plugged in even if they are not attached to the device, so disconnect chargers when not in use.

Green Fact: Switching off cell phones while charging uses half the power.

3. Lose the Paper Trail

Print with discretion; use soft copies whenever, wherever possible. Install a duplex printer (which can print on both sides), to halve paper consumption and reduce energy consumption by almost 25%. Designate a recycle bin for used paper.

Green Fact: Fax-modems allow document to be sent directly from a computer without requiring a printed hard copy.

4. Go Light on the Lighting

Lighting constitutes 29% of office energy costs, so turn off lights whenever possible to lower bills and energy. Install sensor activated lights especially in seldom or periodically used areas.

Green Fact: Energy saver light bulbs can save up to 50% on lighting costs and energy.

5. Recycle, Refill & Reuse

Opt for refillable printer cartridges and stationery made from recycled materials.

Green Fact: Avoid using paper and Styrofoam cutlery and crockery; use reusable ones.

On Screen Keyboard

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Microsoft Windows provides a accessibility utility named “On-Screen Keyboard“. This is not recommended for long and lengthy typing but it is very helpful for short tasks performing using keyboard or joysticks if required.

How can activate it?

Read the rest of this entry »

How to Check Hard Drive Health

If you don’t have a monitoring software for disk health, you would need to download Free disk health monitoring utility. There are many options among them. The most famous name is SMART – (Self-Monitoring, Analysis, and Reporting Technology). It is used to test the health of computer’s hard disks. SMART detects and reports on several indicators of reliability, for gauging possible disk failures. This is a very common device, so I mentioned it. You can go for any such utility. Read more on how to clean computer hard drive.

Run the windows check disk utility after installing the software on your computer. It will check hard drive for errors and repair if there are any problems in the system file. In addition, it will also examine the physical structure, that is, the integrity of the disk surface. This is the basic thing for hard disc health check.

After the utility disk check:

  1. Close all the software (application, browsers and any other utilities) which might be open
  2. Open ‘My Computer
  3. Right click on the mouse on your hard drive properties
  4. Click tool tab which will be under error checking
  5. Click on the option which says check now
  6. Choose the option which says ‘automatically fix file system errors’
  7. Read more on computer keeps freezing up.

Once you are done with ‘automatically fix file system errors’,

  1. Select the option which says scan for and attempt recovery of bad sectors and
  2. Finally click start to tune the utility.This is when the utility will check hard drive for bad sectors, when it is checking hard drive for health. Download and then run the freeware diagnostic tool you might be having on your computer, for example Hard Disk Tune. This is a fabulous diagnostic tool to run an entire benchmark analysis of the hard drive. Not just that, it also identifies structural errors and makes a total analysis of the drive, checking every item. Read more on bad sectors on hard drive.

Once this is done,

  1. Close the program,
  2. Shut off the computer and
  3. Switch it on.

Hopefully, your hard disk will be fine now.

That’s it! It was that simple to check hard drive health.