4 Important Things To Do When You Get A New Computer


Congratulations on getting a new computer! It’s an exciting moment. Whether it’s a desktop or a laptop, a Mac or a PC, you should do several important things to ensure your new computer is set up for optimal performance, security, and usability. This blog post will discuss four essential things you should do when you get a new computer to maximise your investment.

1. Update Your Operating System and Software

Keeping your operating system and software up-to-date is crucial for various reasons. This includes staying ahead with the latest features, bug fixes, and security patches. Here are some reasons why updating your computer is important:

  • Enhanced Security: Software updates often include critical security patches that address known vulnerabilities, protecting your system from potential cyber threats, such as malware, viruses, and hackers. Regular updates can help safeguard your computer and sensitive data against security breaches and minimise the risk of data breaches or unauthorised access.
  • Improved Performance: Software updates can also include performance improvements, bug fixes, and optimisations that can enhance the overall performance of your computer. It can resolve performance issues, fix software bugs, and optimise system resources, leading to improved efficiency and responsiveness.
  • Compatibility: Updates also ensure that your operating system and software are compatible with the latest hardware, devices, and technologies. This can help avoid compatibility issues, glitches, and errors that may arise due to outdated software or hardware.
  • Security Compliance: In many industries, compliance with security regulations and standards is mandatory. Keeping your software up-to-date can help you meet these compliance requirements. It also helps ensure that your system is protected against potential security risks.

Regularly updating your operating system ensures you have the latest features, bug fixes, and security patches. This leads to improved performance, enhanced security, and access to new features, ultimately contributing to a better computing experience.

2. Install Antivirus Software

Having antivirus software installed on your new computer is crucial for protecting it from malware, viruses, and other online threats that can compromise your data and privacy.

Recommendations for reputable antivirus software programs include Norton, McAfee, Avast, and Bitdefender, among others. These programs offer comprehensive protection against various threats and have a proven track record of effectiveness.

To install and configure antivirus software:

  • Download the antivirus software from the official website of the chosen program.
  • Follow the on-screen prompts to install the antivirus software on your computer.
  • Once installed, launch the antivirus software and go through the setup process, which may include creating an account and setting up scan schedules.
  • Update the antivirus software to ensure it has the latest virus definitions and security features.
  • Configure the software to perform regular computer scans, including full system scans and real-time scanning of files and downloads.

Regularly updating your antivirus software is crucial as new threats emerge constantly, and updates often include important bug fixes and security patches. Running scans regularly, especially full system scans, helps detect and remove potential threats that may have bypassed real-time scanning.

3. Backup Your Data

It is essential to back up your new computer to avoid data loss due to theft, malfunction, or deletion.

Instructions for setting up regular automated backups:

  • Built-in backup tools: Access the settings or system preferences of your operating system, such as Windows or macOS, and locate the backup or time machine option. Follow the prompts to configure regular automated backups, setting the frequency and destination for the backups.
  • Third-party backup software: Install reputable backup software like Acronis True Image or EaseUS Todo Backup. Follow the setup prompts to configure the software for regular automated backups, specifying the files or folders to back up, the schedule, and the destination for the backups.

Different options for data backup:

  • Cloud storage: Use cloud storage services like Google Drive, Dropbox, or Microsoft OneDrive to store your data securely in the cloud. Set up automatic syncing or backup to these services to ensure your data is backed up offsite and accessible from anywhere.
  • External hard drives: Connect an external hard drive to your computer and use backup software to configure automatic backups. Store the external hard drive in a safe location, such as a different physical location or a fireproof safe, to protect against theft or hardware failure.
  • Network-attached storage (NAS): NAS devices offer a centralised location for data storage and backup in your home network. Set up automatic backups to the NAS device using backup software and ensure the NAS device is stored securely.

Regularly backing up your data is essential to safeguard against potential data loss. It provides peace of mind and ensures you can quickly recover your data in case of unforeseen events like hardware failure, theft, or accidental deletion. Backing up your data on a new computer using built-in backup tools or third-party backup software, and considering different options like cloud storage, external hard drives, or NAS, is crucial to protect against data loss. Don’t forget to compress PDF files before backing up to save space and optimise storage.

4. Install Essential Software and Applications

When setting up a new computer, it’s important to install essential software and applications to meet your specific needs.

Recommended software and applications:

  • Web Browsers: Popular options like Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, or Microsoft Edge for internet browsing.
  • Productivity Suites: Microsoft Office or Google Workspace for creating and editing documents, spreadsheets, and presentations.
  • Media Players: VLC Media Player, Windows Media Player, or iTunes for playing music, videos, and other media files.

Download software from reputable sources. Visit the official websites of the software or application to download it safely. Avoid downloading from unauthorised sources or third-party websites to minimise the risk of malware or viruses. Once the software is downloaded, follow the installation prompts carefully, and select custom installation options if available to avoid installing unnecessary software or toolbars.

Benefits of having essential software and applications installed:

  • Improved productivity: Productivity suites enable you to create and edit documents, spreadsheets, and presentations efficiently, enhancing productivity for work or personal tasks.
  • Enhanced entertainment options: Media players allow you to enjoy music, videos, and other media files, enhancing your entertainment options on your new computer.

Installing essential software and applications from reputable sources and avoiding unauthorised downloads is crucial for a smooth and secure experience on your new computer. Installing the right software can improve productivity, provide entertainment options, and enhance overall functionality for your needs.

I am a computer engineer holding a bachelor's degree in Computer Science, complemented by a Master's in Business Administration from University of Strathclyde, Scotland. I currently work as a Senior IT Consultant in Melbourne, Australia. With over 15 years of...