Our forum members have voted on the most common computer problems they encounter in their personal or professional lives. We’ll go through each of these and offer some of our opinions on these poll results. The options for most common computer problems included: Hardware, Applications, Configuration, Internet, Viruses, or the Operating System itself. Granted, some of these can overlap, and one issue can cause symptoms with another. But our focus was the originator of the problem. Our forums have a mixture of technicians and computer enthusiasts and we invite everyone to join and offer their opinion in our polls.
Hardware and Software Computer Problems
Hardware received 13.56% of the vote. Our experience with computer hardware is if the hardware is going to fail it will likely fail within the first couple of months. Budget computers contain hardware from less-reliable sources and can fail quickly after purchase. The most common culprits in hardware failure include bad power supplies, bad RAM and bad hard drives.
Applications received 10.17% of the votes. Applications can vary from office suites like MS Office, graphics programs and games. If an application fails, the quickest and cheapest fix is to uninstall and reinstall the application. A common problem with applications, however, is that they often come pre-installed with computers and reinstalling them is difficult (if not impossible) without resetting the computer to factory condition. This is why it is always best to buy the applications separately and get the installation disk.
Configuration received 18.64% of the votes. Misconfiguration of user accounts, email programs, router and other critical software can render a PC virtually useless. Write down all of your passwords, serial numbers and application key codes and keep them in a secure, safe place. Give children and strangers limited user accounts so they cannot inadvertently make changes to your computer that can cause configuration issues. In addition, occasionally make restore points. Restore points are registry snapshots that allow you to quickly revert the system to that state if there is a driver or system issue. Create a restore point by navigating to the Accessories>System Tools menu and selecting the System Restore option.
Internet received 23.73% of the vote. Common Internet problems include router configuration problems, disabled network adapters, incorrect configuration and broken winsock due to virus and spyware removal.
Virus / Spyware / Adware received 57.63% of the votes. No surprise here. An infected PC can cause problems across all of these categories. Users must be vigilant and use a good antivirus program that does automatic updates and scans, keep Windows up to date and be wary of emails containing links or attachments that can be used to install malware. You must also keep third-party software such as Adobe Reader and Java up to date, as there have been exploits on these platforms, as well.
Operating System received 8.47% of the vote. This seems to indicate that once the system is installed and running normally, it will continue to do so until a hardware or virus causes a problem.
Computer Problems Summary
Our poll on common computer problems revealed a snapshot of what users experience with their PCs. Common computer problems can be avoided by using the above information to improve and protect your computer. If you want to read more tips, be sure to read our computer troubleshooting articles.