It’s that time of year again; the start of new school year is around the corner. Whether it’s the kids back to public school or startup of a home program or some higher-level learning for yourself, computers will most likely be utilized. Just like getting an automobile ready for a long road trip, it is a good idea to ensure that electronic devices are ready for the upcoming school year. Here are some ideas where to start your tune-up.
Check your operating system. Upgrade to the highest version possible to remain compatible with schools and curriculum sources. Browsers used in research can cause difficulties so check their version. Good practice is to keep at least two browsers available in case one doesn’t work properly.
Protect your devices with the latest security updates. Your student’s teacher may require the use of educational sites and they can be targets for malicious software.
Along the same line, be sure your virus protection software is up-to-date along with its database of known threats. Be certain scans are running when expected.
Review the versions of your productivity software. Back-to-school nights are a good place to learn what software the teachers will use through the year.
Bookmark contact information such as the latest school website information, teacher’s emails and sites where you can watch student grades.
Check your Internet connection. Is it sufficient to handle your household traffic and any devices recently added? This is especially important if your student enrolls in online courses or has the need to take tests from home.
Inventory computer supplies. While many assignments will be uploaded or emailed to the teacher, flash drives or DVDs may still be needed for transporting files. Don’t forget to stock up on printer paper and ink. Buying ahead online can save money overall.
Most importantly, ensure that you have a backup strategy in place. If there is a catastrophic outage, you don’t want to be the one to tell your teen their homework has been lost and they’ll have to do it over.