Work Computer and
By John Myers
impossible to think about doing our jobs nowadays without a computer.
It feels like it was just yesterday that we were distributing our
first IBM dual floppy PCs. Times really have changed since then.
Before we got connected to the internet, we didn't have access to
software other than the "standard supported software". We now have
many choices when it comes to the hardware and software that we
software choices is both good and bad; good in that we can do more
things and bad in that it can cause many problems. With the explosion
of the internet, we are tempted to install more and more software
that we find at various sites on the web. As seen in the "Spyware
& Adware" article, this installation of software can do more than
we bargained for. It can also cause our computers to crash or worse
- not boot.
Here at ETCS,
we find ourselves having to rebuild more and more machines. When
the machines come in, we find a lot of non-standard software on
them. It's an impossible task to keep track of all the software
one can find on the internet and document what software package
will or will not work with another software package.
We have tested
what we call the "standard software" on our computers and have found
it to be very stable. We believe that the additional software being
loaded on the machines can cause instability. Some non-standard
software interferes with the normal functioning of our standard
software. Some departments on campus have gone as far as producing
a "banned" software list. If the "banned" software is found on their
machine, it can be reported to their supervisor.
HotBar are two software packages that top my list of undesirable
software. Besides using up bandwidth, when WebShots fails it causes
your computer to hang. The dreaded on/off power cycle is the only
way to bring life back to your computer. HotBar has been found to
corrupt files that Outlook uses. This corruption will either stop
Outlook from starting or crash whenever you try to create a new
that the "standard software" might not have everything you need
to do your job. In this case, it is acceptable to install additional
software. If you don't need the software for your job, please don't
install it. Your machine will be more stable the less software you
install on it. Also, installing and then uninstalling software does
not bring the computer back to where it was before the initial installation.
I have yet to find an uninstall program that removes everything
that the installation program installs. Files, directories and registry
entries are left behind after the uninstall process. These items
can cause your computer to be unstable.
If while you're
surfing the web you find new and interesting software that you need
for your job, please contact us and we'll help to make sure it won't
cause you any problems. But if the software is not needed for work,
please avoid causing potential problems by refraining from installing
it. Use your own personal computer for testing.