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Saving your computer from total disaster

More often than not I get mails from users telling me about problems with their computers when using SDL Trados Studio and not being able to work. Normally this users contact me and want immediate response to fix the problem because they are in the middle of translating a project (Murphy's law). Although they could go and read SDL's support website (which 95% of the times has the solution) they always try to go the easy way and get an answer for me. Well, I do try to help them as much as I can, but 90% of the time (literally) the problem is not the software per se, but something going wrong in the their system. Most people, not being very skillful  with computers, don't know how to fix a problem beyond a typo in word or post a pic on Facebook. And even when this is not right or wrong it does entail many things. When you provide directions on how to attempt some repairs, normally the users get lost and have no clue of what they are doing. Some users go as a fat as not even knowing that uninstalling is not erasing files but going to windows control panel to properly carry out such task. So there are to ways here, either they learn to properly use a computer and acquire a good level of skills (which most users tend to believe they don't need), or they learn a set of simple but very important rules. Thus, in order to help them all (and perhaps some other more advanced users that might not follow this rules yet) here are some videos to get you started on emergency prevention, instead of reacting.

First, as soon as you get your new computer make sure you, either have a set of restores discs included or that you create them as soon as you get your computer working and start installing more software. Most vendors do not provide restore discs anymore, but DO give you the means to create within your computer. So all you have to do is look for an option like create rescue discs or create restore discs. Normally you will ned from 3 to 6 dvds for that depending on what your computer came with from the factory. So if you have no specific option provided or if you would like to watch some similar scenarios, here are some videos on this regards.

  • Make recovery discs for your PC on windows Vista (this applies to some HP computers perhaps even with windows 7) 

  • If you want to go further, then you can make a personalized recovery disc set and an image of your hard drive (more advance but thorough option)

Now, once you have a working restore CD from your computer as soon as it is ready and working fresh on factory defaults, you can go ahead and also make a restore point to don't have to wipe the drive and go back to factory settings. Creating a restore point will give you the option that in case something is not working ok, you can go back to that restore point which is your computer working nicely at a certain point in time. So as soon as you have created your restore CD then you can install all your software and as soon as you test it is all working as you want create a restore point. Here's how (it includes the steps to restore the restore point).

So if you follow this rules then maybe you can skip attending to your local training center. In case something is going really wrong with your computer then just go back to the restore point when your computer was finely tuned. HOWEVER! don't forget to constantly make a backup of your system at least every week. Bear in mind that this implies having another hard drive (external preferably). If you live in Mexico there are some suggestions of external hard drives you can buy.

External portable hard drive 500gb Editor's choice click here