If you’re trying to avoid computer problems then the best things that you can do are to get into good habits. There are so many things that you can do in order to avoid the worst things that can happen; it’s really very simple.
First off, back up your data. I can’t stress this enough. You really need to back up your data in order to avoid the worst disaster possible. Losing data or hard drives can happen anywhere, anytime, and at the WORST times. Actually, it always happens at the worst times Anyway, always make sure you’re doing round the clock backups. And the best way that I’ve seen that you can do that is through using a service such as Backblaze. This service saved my butt one time when my hard drive got fried by a failing power supply unit. It was awful but at least I had a backup!!! If I didn’t have that, I’d be royally screwed or I’d have to shell out megabucks for a data recovery service that may or may not have even worked.
Avoid internet bad neighborhoods. If there’s any surefire way to get a virus or malware onto your computer it’s by cruising these shady areas on the internet. Andy by bad neighborhoods I mean gambling sites, adult sites, and hacking sites. Even shady message boards can be a bit of a bad news area.
Protect your PC with a vigilant and well reviewed antivirus software program such as Norton. I use Norton 360 and it works pretty well I must say. It has helped me out on many occasion. You can’t skip this! You could be fine for years and then all of a sudden you’ll get a devastating virus on your computer that wipes out everything.
Always keep your software up to date as well. If Windows wants to update itself, let it! Always turn on the auto update feature too, because you WILL forget. Updates for flash, for example, will patch security holes that could leave you vulnerable to infection with viruses and malware. You could be up shit creek without a paddle if you don’t let your software keep itself up to date. Browser updates are another form of this of course.
In other news, ensure that you keep your hardware up to date as well. Drivers can help improve the speed and stability of your computer. Video card drivers are notorious for this – increasing performance by up to 50% in some cases.
Don’t download weird software. Try not to download torrents. Don’t download ANYTHING unless it’s absolutely necessary. That’s my rule of thumb at least. The one time I ended up downloading a software program from one of those shady “free” software sites I immediately got hit with a virus.
Other than that it’s pretty easy to maintain a computer. Just keep it simple and maintained.