Computer Repair in Ashland, Elmwood, Weeping Water, Lousiville, Greenwood, Murdock, and Eagle Nebraska

Featured

Computer Repairs & Upgrades are Available Locally

Cass County Computer Repair offers competent, prompt & friendly hometown service for your computer.

  • Virus and Malware Removal

  • Hardware Repairs and Upgrades

  • Data Recovery and Transfer

  • Computer Optimization to Speed Up Your PC

  • Custom Built Computers

  • Website Design and Hosting

  • Search Engine Optimization for Your Business Website

If you would like personal, professional service for your computer, you are in the right spot. I offer free pickup and delivery of your computer within 15 miles of my shop. If you are tired of the impersonal service (that takes forever to finish) in the big stores, give me a call at 402-525-3799 or send me an email.

Lon@CassCountyComputerRepair.com

Scams -Spams and Fishing for your Money Part III

The latest malicious software currently making the rounds is a recycled variant of the “FBI Virus” It locks down your computer so it will do nothing except display an official looking message “Illegal content has been found on your computer. Your computer has been locked by the FBI and the lock will not be removed until you pay a $100.00 fine”. Of course there is a link to pay your “fine”.

This virus is typically transmitted by email. Make sure your anti-virus program has access to scan your incoming email. Do not open email from people you don’t know, and be very careful when opening email attachments. It is best to right click on the attachment and have your anti-virus program scan it before opening any attachment.

Fake Anti-Virus (Scareware) is the Most Common Infection Seen on Computers

Clicking on a “Your computer is infected, click this to scan your computer for threats” pop-up window when surfing the internet is the source of most of the virus removal jobs I get. This source of infections has been around for years – they use scare tactics to get you to click a window – and clicking that window downloads malicious software to your computer.

Fake Anti Virus Malware removal Elmwood, Murdock, Ashland, Lousiville, Weeping Water, Nebraska, NE, Cass County

A Typical Rogue Anti-Virus Program

A  Partial List of the “Rogue AntiVirus Programs”:
Antispyware Soldier-AntiVermeans-AntiVermins-AntiVerminser-AntiVirGear-Antivirus 2009-Antivirus Lab 2009-Antivirus Master-Antivirus XP 2008-AntivirusGolden-AVGold-BraveSentry-IE Defender-Internet Antivirus-MalwareCrush-MalwareWipe-MalwareWiped-MalwareWipePro-MalwareWiper-Micro Antivirus 2009-MS Antivirus-PestCapture-PestTrap-Power Antivirus 2009-Power Antivirus-PSGuard-Smart Antivirus 2009-SpyAxe-SpyCrush-SpyDown-SpyFalcon-SpyGuard-SpyHeal-XP AntiVirus…and the list goes on and on.

These malicious programs will hijack your computer, redirect your internet searches, prevent your programs from running (including the anti virus program you have installed) – and blame it all on the imaginary “threats” they pretend to have found while “scanning” your PC. The object of all of this is simple – to blackmail you into paying them money for their fake anti-virus program..to remove the problems these infections create.

Even worse, I had a customer who actually paid $49.95 for a “year subscription” to one of these fake “Anti-virus” programs believing they were doing the right thing.to protect their computer. 30 days later they received another bill for $49.95, and when they did not pay it, their computer became impossible to use at all – only the desktop picture was visible.

I don’t know about you, but the last people in the world I want to have my credit card information are people trying to scam me out of money.

The first line of defense is to not click anything unfamiliar, install a WELL KNOWN anti virus program by a reputable company and scan regularly. Know what that program looks like and don’t allow “mystery programs” past your anti-virus program..If your anti virus detects a threat – believe it.

Another safeguard is to use Firefox as a web browser and to use the “NoScript” add-on for Firefox to prevent the Java script exploits that are one method of infecting your PC. Not clicking on pop-up Windows is another good line of defense – even clicking “No” can infect your computer. When I run into one of these pop-up windows when surfing the web, I click nothing – instead I simply re-start my computer using the Windows “Start” button.

If you already are infected, give me a call. These infections can be removed and the functionality of your computer restored to normal.

Malicious Software and Pintrest

Reports are starting to come in concerning viral and malware infections contracted by those using the “Pintrest” website. When you “Pin” something up, others are encouraged to to click it too to “pin” it up also. The “pinned” web content may be completely harmless when it is first pinned for others to see.

Given the huge growth Pintrest is experiencing, it is a “ripe fruit” for those distributing malicious software to use to their advantage. There have been multiple reports of malware infections contracted by people visiting the site “pinned” and clicking on an “irresistible” offer. Offers of “free gift cards”, “Win a PS3″ and others are “served up” by adservers to websites, so the owner of the site can make a few pennies on every ad that is clicked.

The problem; poor screening of the ads practically invites distributors of malicious software to insert malicious code into the ads “served up” to be clicked upon.

The simple solution: Remember, there is no such thing as a free lunch. DON’T click on “free” offers. If there is bait in the water, chances are it will have a hook in it.

The reported infections are sailing right past McAffee’s protection, and other anti-virus programs may have vulnerability to this malicious software too. Until virus definitions are updated, an anti-virus program cannot stop the virus, simply because it does not know what to look for.

Scams, Spams and Phishing for Your Money

The latest threat for the home computer user is on the telephone. Many people have received a phone call “out of the blue” claiming to be from Microsoft or another authoritative technology company. They will tell you that a virus has been detected on your computer, or that they have detected a vulnerability and ask you to press a combination of keys.

Refuse! – these scammers are trying to gain remote access to your computer to try and fool you into paying for a bogus “remote repair”. Microsoft does not have access to your computer and does not contact Windows users with offers of service. No other technology company does either. If you did not initiate a request for service – RUN don’t walk away from that phone call.

Install a good anti-virus program and use it regularly to scan your computer. Don’t click on ANY pop-up windows that appear while you are on the internet, claiming your computer is infected and offering to scan it and remove the “viruses” unless it is from the anti-virus program you have installed on your computer.

Affordable PC Repairs

Give me a call at 402-525-3799 or send an email to Lon@CassCountyComputerRepair.com for affordable repairs and upgrades to your computer in the western Cass County Nebraska area. I offer free pickup and delivery of your PC within a 15 mile radius of the shop. I will collect an initial diagnostic fee of $30.00  upon pickup of your computer.

Louisville, Manley, Weeping Water, Murdock, Elmwood, Avoca, Eagle, Alvo and Ashland  Nebraska are all within a 15 mile radius of the shop and qualify for free pickup and delivery, provided we perform the repair work on your PC. My diagnostic fee of $30.00 is waived (deducted from your bill) if you choose us to complete the repair.

My “hourly bench rate” is $60.00 per hour. Only the time I actually spend interacting with your computer is billed to you, not all the time it is simply being scanned on my work bench without my intervention. An average bill for virus removal is approximately $90.00 – $120.00, an 1.5 to 2 hours of labor, but the total is variable depending on how heavily infected your computer is. If the computer will no longer start and run, we will have to remove the hard drive for external scanning, resulting in additional expense.

Please be prepared to provide us with the CDs or DVDs with the software that came with your computer. I will also need the operating systems license key, and the license keys for any extra software you wish to have installed (Microsoft Office – etc). These will be needed if we are forced to do a re-installation because of irreparable harm to your operating system from a virus infection.
Email me at:
Lon@CassCountyComputerRepair.com

Contact Cass County Computer Repair

Local Computer Repair in Elmwood -Weeping Water -Murdock and Louisville vs “Big Box” Stores

I about fell over 3 nights ago when a customer asked me if I could compete with the price that the “Geek Squad” quoted her for a laptop repair. Her computer had crashed due to a virus infection, and when she took it to “that big store” she was quoted $150.00 to diagnose the problem and another $100.00 to repair it. Yes, $250.00 total!

She had diligently backed up her photos and documents to a USB thumb drive. We discussed what was wrong and made the decision that the most affordable solution was to simply re-install Windows, without any files saved and transferred . “That big store” charges even more to save and transfer files while repairing a PC.

All available Microsoft updates were installed during the re-installation of Windows, as well as all updates from her laptops manufacturer. She walked out of my shop with a bill of less than $90.00 – taxes included.Saving her data would have added slightly to her bill, but it still would have been about 1/2 of what the “Geek Squad” quoted her for a re-installation of Windows – WITHOUT transferring her files.

My diagnostic fee is $30.00, but that fee is waived if you choose my shop to perform the repairs to your computer.

Local computer repair performed by Cass County Computer Repair in the Elmwood, Murdock, Weeping Water and Louisville area of Cass County Nebraska is more affordable than dragging your computer into the city. We are not paying a huge overhead to keep the doors of the business open. I am working out of my home as I grow the business and the savings are passed on to my customers.

I offer free pickup and delivery of your computer within 15 miles of my shop, with a slight additional fuel surcharge for longer distances. I also offer “on-site” service and 24/7 emergency support and repair for “mission critical” computers.

I value my reputation for honest and competent service and want Cass County Computer Repair to become “the place” to take your computer when it needs fixing.

Call (402) 525-3799 or email Lon@CassCountyComputerRepair.com  to inquire about service for your PC.

Adware – Spyware – Malware Prevention

Sometimes children just can’t resist the “register now for a free ipod” popup that appears while they are surfing the web. Game sites are particularly known for this. A good anti-virus program does help, as will a firewall. Appropriate security policies can be set on some computers too, to prevent a non-administrator from installing software. XP home and earlier versions of Windows do not have this “security policy” feature.

It is a good idea for you to surf the web, and have your children surf the web, from an account that is NOT an administrator account. My kids have non-administrator accounts, PERIOD. Any changes have to be approved and done by an adult. Administrator accounts are by default allowed to install software..and an accidental click can cause major issues.

Another “good practice” while surfing and coming across a pop-up window that claims to have found a virus on your computer is to not click anything at all on the pop-up. Malicious programmers have taken to building programs that respond to a click anywhere (including the cancel button) by downloading their malicious software. If I come across one of these scams designed to get malware onto my computer, the action I take is the safe action. Instead of clicking anything, I simply restart my computer from the Windows “Start” button. Problem solved.

A good overall work around for the “security policy” limitation is to edit your “hosts” file to prevent a connection from being established to the server that downloads this malicious software to your computer. Winhelp2002 has a pretty good explanation of the process and they also have a downloadable hosts file available that is regularly updated and easily installed.

The hosts file download is a .zip format. After you download it, right click on the hosts.zip file and choose “extract” or “unzip”. Make sure you unzip it to a location that you can find after the unzipping completes. Go into the unzipped “hosts” folder and you will see an icon named either MVPS or MVPS.bat (depending on the settings of your computer). Click on the MVPS icon and it will automatically install the hosts file in the correct location in your computer.

It is a simple fix that saves a lot of headaches.

Cass County Nebraska Computer Repair Now Open 402-525-3799

Cass County Nebraska Computer PC RepairI have opened a computer repair shop in western Cass County, near Elmwood, Murdock and Weeping Water, to service computers. I have been working on computers since late 1998 and have well over a year of experience in repairing computers in a commercial PC repair setting.

I will be doing the repair work out of my home, to keep my overhead lower. I can provide better prices for my customers by avoiding expensive commercial building rental costs. Currently the hourly rate is $60.00 per hour of bench time (A completed repair will cost you about 1/2 the cost of the “Freek Squad” or other major electronics retailers repair departments). “Bench time” is the time actually spent interacting with your computer, NOT the time it is sitting on the bench running scans without any input from me.

It is more practical for me to work on computers in my shop, but I will make “house calls” if that is what you prefer. Because a “house call” will prevent me from working on additional computers while I am out of the shop, they will be billed at the full bench rate.

If you prefer to not mess with unhooking and hooking up the computer cabling to bring the PC to the shop, I will pick up and deliver it after the repair. Pickups within 15 miles of the shop will be free, longer distances will be charged a minor fee to pay for fuel.

There is a diagnostic charge of $30.00 to take a peek at your computer so I can make an intelligent recommendation about the course of action I think needs to be taken. If you choose my shop to do the work, the $30.00 diagnostic charge is waived.

Your bill will be only for the time actually spent working on your computer, not for the time the virus and malware scans are running without needing input from me. A typical virus scan and removal will take about 1.5 “billable” hours of bench time to complete, depending on the severity of the infection. A “heavily infected” hard drive that prevents the computer from starting, or is so slow that a scan cannot be practically performed, requires removal from the computer to perform an external scan. Typically this will take 2 to 3 “billable” hours to accomplish.

Another option for a “heavily infected” hard drive is to rescue your documents, photos and data and re-install the operating system. We ask that you provide us with the original CD’s provided by the computer manufacturer, a list of the programs that you use, and passwords for all user accounts on your PC.

The majority of the work a computer brought to our shop needs is virus, spyware and malware removal, and a general “clean up” of file clutter that occurs in the use of your PC. Another popular service is computer optimization to speed up your PC. I can replace or repair broken system files, resolve driver issues, or fix a fouled up registry that is slowing down your PC. Before your PC leaves the shop, it will be completely updated to bring the operating system up to it’s newest version.

I will also perform data retrieval and recovery from crashed and/or formatted computer hard drives, as well as bring back accidentally deleted pictures on memory cards from your digital camera or USB storage drives.

Hardware repairs and upgrades can be accomplished for all makes and models of PC’s. Hardware repairs are available for any computer – desktop or laptop / notebook PC. We can do about anything from replacing a broken screen in your mobile computer, to a complete motherboard (main circuit board) replacement.

We can install additional RAM to speed up your PC, a wireless networking card, or a better video card, to enhance and modernize your current computer. For a bigger boost in performance, we often can install a new motherboard, CPU, and RAM in your old computer case, reusing some of the old internal components to give you a far better computer for less money than you would spend buying a new PC. We also try to stock refurbished computers to maximize your return for the money you spend.

We can also order a pre-configured computer to meet your needs, or build a completely custom tailored PC to your specifications; a micro-compact PC, a media streaming entertainment center, a processing monster for CAD drafting programs or video editing, or a screaming fast graphics intensive gaming rig that your gaming friends will wish they owned. Give us a call or email us and let us know what you need and want.