One of the best benefits of having Internet service is to take advantage of hundreds of free software you can download on your computer. Whether you are looking for a photo editor, Internet browser, antivirus software, or game, chances are, you’ll find dozens of options online to pick from. Here are a few things to keep in mind.
1. Choosing your download. When you download software, there are several things to keep in mind. For example, some software may conflict with your currently running software. If you already have antivirus software, you may not be able to install another one without uninstalling the program you already have. Also, not all software programs are helpful. If it is actually disguised malware, you’re computer and your privacy will be put in jeopardy. Research the product for ratings and reviews before you decide to download it. Try downloading it from a safe site, like download.com, where experts have tested and reviewed the product and individual users have given them ratings and reviews.
2. Initiating the download. When you click on a link to download a program, you will probably be asked if you would like to save or run the file. If you click save, you will be asked where you would like to save the file and then proceed to download. After it completes, you can open the installation file from where you saved it. If you click run, the download will choose a place to save the file, like a “Downloads” folder somewhere in your system files. As soon as the download completes, it will immediately begin the installation process. You should click save so that you will know where to find the download, in case the installation gets interrupted, or you decide to let the file download while you are away from the computer. Also, if you know where the installation file is, you can rerun it you want to reinstall the program later.
3. Installing the download. This part should be fairly easy. You will be given step by step instructions and be asked to click next, check “I agree” to the terms of service, etc. Pay attention to each step! You need to know what it is doing. For example, many free downloads will ask if you would also like to install a toolbar or search provider for you. These “extras” are space and bandwidth-consuming annoyances that you don’t need! All you have to do is uncheck the box next to “Install x toolbar” or “Add y feature” to continue your installation without installing the annoying extras.
4. Back up your installation files. Any time you download a new program or an upgrade, you should save the installation file for later reference. Once you have successfully installed the program, move the installation file to an external hard drive or flash drive. You should have a drive where you back up all your personal files anyway, so make a folder that says “Installation files” and keep the files here. This way, if anything happens to the program in the future and it needs to be reinstalled, you will know exactly where to find the file, and you won’t have to take the time to redownload it. Also, in the event that your computer would have to be replaced or your operating system reinstalled, you’ll have the files necessary to quickly reinstall the programs you used before onto your new computer system.
If you pick the best software for your computer, avoid unnecessary extras, and keep the installation files in a safe location, you will be able to use your software efficiently and easily.
Written by Hannah Miller, Online Marketing Representative and Customer Service, Copper.net. Copper.net is a nationwide Internet services provider that is all-American owned and operated. Call today, 1-800-336-3318 or sign up online at www.copper.net! Check out my blog for more articles!