How to boost the productivity of your laptop

Do you want to maximise the productivity potential of your laptop or PC? Do you want to make sure that your laptop or PC is running as effectively as it should be? Here are some top tips for boosting and maintaining the productivity of your laptop to maximise its potential as well as your own!

1. Update your PC every time there is a software update available

Software updates can sometimes seem like a nightmare and something you don’t have time for, but it’s important that you do keep your tech up-to-date! These software updates are designed to keep your PC working as well as it can be, with bug fixes and increased storage sometimes being included in these updates.

2. Get rid of apps and programs you don’t use

Unnecessary apps – also known as ‘junk’ apps – that you don’t use can actually take up a significant part of your PC’s storage which can ultimately slow down your computer or prevent your laptop from being properly updated. Getting rid of these apps and programs is really easy! It will simply require a few clicks or drag to the trash icon, and it can be hugely beneficial to the overall performance of your device.

3. Learn computer shortcuts, or automate tasks

Computer shortcuts are really easy to learn and they can significantly speed up the navigation of your computer, whilst also making monotonous tasks simpler and quicker. An example of a computer shortcut is CTRL and C to copy text/images/links and then using CTRL and V to paste it to where you want it to go. You can also use an automated extension that can learn to do monotonous and repetitive tasks on your PC for you. Both of these options will significantly decrease the time you spend doing time-consuming jobs and will free you up to do more valuable tasks.

If you have any queries about the above information, don’t hesitate to contact one of our professionals for IT support across Australia. Contact us today or submit a ticket with your IT issue.

3 basic IT issues and how to troubleshoot them

Despite the development in cyber software and technology, there are still many common IT issues that we all experience at some point, irrespective of computer model or brand. We have compiled a list of some basic IT issues and how to troubleshoot them yourself.

Constant freezing

There are many factors that contribute to computer freezing. From having too many programs open and your computer overheating to insufficient RAM and computer viruses, the reasons are endless. Before taking targeted measures, try closing tabs that are not in use. If the mouse pointer does not move, press ctrl, alt, and delete all at once on your keyboard. Once here, you can access Task Manager and end tasks that are not responding. If the problem persists once unnecessary programs and tabs are removed, try restarting your computer. You will know if it’s a bigger problem if the freezing continues and is accompanied by pop-up windows or password breaches. This signifies potential viruses, for which you should contact us at Rapid IT.

Forgotten passwords

With many now returning to the office after a long stint of working from home, passwords to company computers are likely to be forgotten. Although there is no way to recover the forgotten password, certain preventative measures can be taken. Always make sure that your password is linked to an email account that can be accessed, or that security question measures are in place. You are usually prompted to take these steps when setting up an account. If you frequently forget passwords, we recommend installing a verified password generator. These applications store your passwords and offer strong, random sequences that are devoid of personal meaning and thus unlikely to be penetrated by outside sources.

Storage is full

Especially with business technology that stores vast amounts of data, PCs have the potential to become full which leads to annoying notifications many times a day. To free up some space, remove any duplicate files or unnecessary software from your computer. This avoids wasted memory and disk space. If this doesn’t help, try clearing your computer browser cache. Advanced PC cleaners can be installed to help with the clearing process too.

If you require help with IT issues, Rapid IT can help. We provide a 24-hour service across Australia and can be reached on 1300 727 430.

Easy cybersecurity measures to implement today

Many business owners and IT teams view cybersecurity as complex and expensive. While protecting sensitive data often takes careful planning, there are many simple and cost-effective security measures every business can implement to instantly reduce its risk of infiltration. These include:

1. Update your software regularly

Keeping your software up to date is easy and quick, so there are no excuses to fall behind on downloading the latest patches and security features. If you’re still using an outdated operating system, managed IT services can help you get set up with a cutting-edge version. Failure to keep your systems updated could leave them vulnerable to malware.

2. Teach your staff about phishing

Despite being one of the oldest tricks in the cybercriminal’s book, phishing is still the cause of countless cyberattacks. The best way to avoid falling prey to phishing is to teach your employees about how to spot an unsafe email. If a communication looks suspicious, recipients must not click on links or pass over anyone’s personal information. Even innocent-looking PDF files could contain powerful malware.

To ensure your employees know the ropes, it may be worth organising training sessions as part of their onboarding process, as well as running regular refresher sessions to ensure everyone stays on top of best practices.

3. Implement a data security governance plan

Contrary to popular belief, data leaks are often accidental. If your employees have unfettered access to a range of files they don’t need, mishaps are bound to happen at some point. To ensure your data remains as secure as possible, try to implement tight rules around how data gets shared and establish accountability processes. One of the best ways to do this is to invest in software offering full visibility over who has access to different kinds of data.

4. Don’t forget remote workers

Chances are your remote workforce has grown since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, and it’s vital that you take this into account when drawing up cybersecurity plans. Discourage homeworkers from using personal devices and make sure they know where to turn for troubleshooting advice (such as your IT support helpdesk).

Tech support in Brisbane and the Sunshine Coast

Need further help keeping your company safe from cybercriminals? Get in touch with Rapid IT Support today!

Office 365 vs Google Suite: The battle for workplace dominance

Microsoft Office has long been considered the hegemon in the world of office software. After all, the word ‘PowerPoint’ is perhaps more widely used than “slideshow”, and in offices around the world, you can see Office 365 installed as the default software on the vast majority of devices. However, in recent years, Google has made a foray into the world of office software in an attempt to cut into Microsoft’s monster share of the office market. Read on to find out more about both suites and which could be best suited to your needs.

Installation

Of the two systems, only one needs to go through a software installation process to get up and running. Office 365 has been a comprehensive office system for years, and this has meant that it has always been something that you need to install on your device. By doing so, you can get the full suite working as well as possible in any situation, regardless of factors such as internet connection. By comparison, the Google Suite is a web-based system. Although devices such as Chromebooks can install individual programs for online access, the system is designed for online work, with collaboration and communication at the heart of Suite.

Collaboration

A significant part of the attraction of Google Suite is the collaborative aspect. Users can all work together on a single document at once, meaning your sales team can get a report done in record time. By comparison, the online version of Office 365 works well but is often less smooth and consistent than its Suite rival. Google’s system was built from the ground up to bring workers together, whereas Microsoft’s Office package seems to be focused on local software, with collaboration bolted on as an added feature.

Quality

When the question of quality is asked, it depends on what you need. Office365 undoubtedly has many more features than Google Suite, with decades of experience in providing programs such as Word used to tweak and adjust their offering to be perfect to the modern workplace. Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides are still early iterations, and although they are incredibly streamlined, you might find yourself in need of more advanced features that simply aren’t in place yet.

If you’re interested in Office 365 migration or you need any other IT assistance, our team can offer the best IT support Sunshine Coast companies need. Give us a call today if you have any questions and we can offer you help, advice and support with your IT issues.

Is remote support secure to use?

There are limited options when it comes to finding the right help for your PC or network of computers. You can have a technician come to your premises or offices to make repairs, you can send the computer to a repair shop or you can attempt to fix it via remote support services. Out of these three options, the most secure is actually remote IT support.

What is remote IT support?

Remote IT support is the process by which someone outside of your company connects to your computer or computer network to perform security and maintenance tasks. Unlike repair shop services, when remote IT support services are being carried out, the provider will ensure that the connection they use is secure and they will record all of the work they do.

Are remote IT support services secure?

It’s not uncommon for business owners to assume that remote IT support services are less secure because they are carried out via an internet connection, but this simply isn’t true. Remote IT support services are usually done via an encrypted connection that is protected end to end to prevent anyone ‘snooping’ or ‘hacking’ into your important data.

Remote IT support can not only solve your computer problems, but it can also save you money because you won’t need to pay for a technician’s travel expenses. It is also a very secure way to find quick and reliable access to great IT support using the latest encryption methods.

Why choose Rapid IT Support?

At Rapid IT support, we understand that having outside control of a PC or network is often the aim of malicious hackers and viruses. When you use a remote support service like ours, you have the power to cancel a session at any time, and, of course, we would never access your computer unless you specifically requested it. In fact, one of the most common requests for our services is for virus and malware removals.

If you have any questions or concerns about our IT support security measures, then please get in touch.

Why flexible IT support is the future for modern businesses

For many businesses, IT support has involved in-office staff since the introduction of broadband into the workplace. And while some companies still thrive on internal IT or contracts for a specific ‘IT person’, for many, their current IT service desk or computer support services can’t keep up with demand. With technology more essential than ever to the functioning of the average business, investing in flexible managed IT support services in Melbourne is the ideal way to keep ahead of the curve.

Why is flexible IT support for the future for modern businesses? Here are just some of the reasons:

Specialised and general support rolled into one

Are you branching out in the technology you use? Or do you need a service that can encompass many different operating systems? Types of technology? Different support services? Whatever your specific goals, it’s often too much to expect one person to meet the demand for everything a business needs. Working with flexible, outsourced IT services means you benefit from expertise from multiple sources instead of relying on one person to Do It All.

24/7 availability to suit the needs of your business

The average business doesn’t necessarily stick to a 9-to-5 schedule these days. Whether you’re working with partnerships overseas or you have flexible work to suit your remote staff, having access to IT support outside of ‘office hours’ can ensure your business is up, running and functioning any hour of the day or night. Emergencies rarely happen on schedule, and IT is no exception.

Support that’s designed to flow with the needs of your business

Much like any other aspect of business, your needs for IT will ebb and flow over time. From an influx of new hires needing to be set up with accounts, to implementing and upgrading servers and software, a flexible online IT support service is the ideal option to match your business’s changing and evolving needs as time goes on.

Looking for managed IT support services on the Gold Coast? Rapid IT Support is the ideal choice for you. Get in touch with our expert team today to find out how we can revolutionise IT support for your business.

How to prepare your IT systems for a return to the office

The coronavirus pandemic has changed how we live and work, most likely forever, so if your company went remote last year during lockdown, you may only just be getting back into the office. If this is the case, there are some things you need to consider to get your office IT ready.

Limit tech sharing

If you want to ensure that your office staff are safe and are able to maintain social distancing while they work, it is imperative that you have enough IT available so that employees do not have to share technology, which could easily spread germs. If you need to, it may be wise to invest in more computers, printers and other office technology so that your employees can easily keep apart and access IT quickly.

Switch to a paperless office

Germs can travel fast on paper that a lot of people have to touch. If you can, you should consider completing tasks online without the use of paper unless completely necessary. Not only will this benefit the environment, but it will also ensure that germs aren’t passed from person to person via paper. In order to create a more paperless environment, you need to make sure that your IT is up to date.

Ensure your WiFi can handle telecommunications

As a result of the coronavirus pandemic, offices have had to turn to video conferencing in order to communicate with their employees. However, although people may now be able to return to the office, it is imperative that your WiFi can handle video conferencing and other video calls, in case some people are unable to return and have to work from home.

Let us help you prepare your office

If you need more advice or need IT support, Rapid IT Support is an online IT support helpdesk that offers 24-hour services for small and medium businesses in Brisbane. We can help you get your business IT ready for your return to the office, so give us a call today to learn more.

Advantages of using Google Chrome as your default browser

Here at Rapid IT Support, we understand the importance of having a browser that works efficiently for you. That’s why we want to highlight the advantages of using Google Chrome as your default browser on your laptop or PC.

1. Speed

Google Chrome is known for being an extremely fast web browser that loads, refreshes and displays web pages in a significantly speedy fashion. If you’re struggling with a slow browser, we suggest switching to Google Chrome to avoid slow loading web pages.

2. Accessibility

Compared to some more complex web browsers, Google Chrome is a simplistic and accessible browser that is easy to navigate regardless of your IT skills. The basic design makes sure that web browsing is kept simple and easy, which is hugely advantageous when searching the internet.

3. Automatic translation

Designed to ease your use of the web, Google Chrome automatically translates web pages into your dominant language for you to understand. This is hugely beneficial for those who spend a lot of time researching on the web as valuable pages can be automatically translated so that you don’t have to waste time doing this yourself.

4. If one tab crashes, the others are unaffected

It can be a nightmare when one of your tabs crashes, leading to the inoperability of your other tabs, or the complete loss of them. Google Chrome avoids this. If one of your tabs crashes completely, you can rest assured that your remaining tabs will remain up and running and accessible still.

5. Security

Google Chrome is a secure, trustworthy browser that you can rely on to efficiently search the web for any information you might need.

Disadvantages

As with many things, Google Chrome has its disadvantages, however, they are relatively minimal. For example, Google Chrome’s biggest drawback is the memory space it takes up on your RAM. As you can imagine, the advantages of Google Chrome hugely outweigh its disadvantages.

If you require further information or are instead in need of some IT tech support, contact our team at Rapid IT Support today. We are specialists in IT support across Australia.

5 tips to bear in mind when using Google Chrome

Google Chrome is by far the most commonly used browser, and for good reason. There are a host of advantages to using Chrome that makes for a much better user experience, allowing you to tweak and enhance a variety of things.

1. Install the AdBlock extension

Using the AdBlock extension in the browser is a great way to prevent distracting and unwarranted ads from popping up and interrupting you whilst browsing the internet. This extension will ensure that nasty ads are disabled from popping up all over the screen, and it is simply a must-have for anyone browsing the internet.

2. Organise your bookmarks

Chrome gives you the ability to organise your bookmarked sites into easy to navigate folders, allowing you to organise sites you visit as you please. This is especially helpful for keeping your work and personal sites separate and allowing you quick and easy access to your most commonly used sites without having to scroll through a huge list.

3. Make the most out of your history

One advantage Chrome has over some other browsers is that you can sync not only your bookmarks but also your history across multiple devices. Say, for example, you are browsing the web on your mobile and then transition to your PC or laptop. You can quickly access sites you have visited on your mobile without having to type out the URL as they will be stored and identified by the device they were last visited on.

4. Login saving

As a part of Google, Chrome allows you to save your login details for various sites, making it easy to access sites where you might have different passwords, or just simply allowing you to enter with one click without having to type out your credentials every time. It goes without saying though that you need to be sure you have anti-virus measures in place to ensure your data is protected.

5. Visit the extension store

Chrome has a large number of extensions available to integrate into the browser, ranging from Google Translate to text-to-speech ability, and even seamless integration with a number of 3rd-party applications like Microsoft Office and Grammarly.

Rapid IT Support is well-versed in IT support services, so if you are ever in need of support, please reach out to give our friendly team a call for some helpful guidance and advice.

5 ways to get the most out of Microsoft Outlook

Microsoft Outlook is still one of the highest used email platforms in the world, utilised across many organisations and businesses. There are a plethora of ways to improve your user experience, but here are 5 simple tips to get you started.

1. Install the Grammarly plug-in

Grammarly is an incredibly useful tool that acts as a more enhanced version of the baked-in spellcheck tool. It will provide you with suggestions to not only correct your spelling, but also any grammatical errors, as well as providing suggestions to improve the quality of your email’s structure. The free version works well but, if you want more enhanced features, you can always upgrade to the paid version.

2. Consider switching to dark mode

As with many phones and apps, Outlook does have a dark mode available that will change the background of the app to a darker black colour, particularly useful to help reduce eyestrain if you are staring at a screen for hours on end. Furthermore, you can switch between dark and light mode as required depending on the situation.

3. Make the most out of flags

Flagging emails has long been a standard feature, allowing you to highlight emails to refer back to. But another useful feature is the ability to flag emails for specific dates. If you have just sent an email to a client and want to ensure it is followed up on a specific date, then you can flag the sent email for your selected date and it will appear in your to-do list. You can even set a reminder so that you get an alert on the day that this email is to be reviewed.

4. Colourise your calendar.

Within Outlook, you have the ability to categorise emails based on colour; for example, you might want a green flag to indicate an email that is awaiting further information before you respond. Did you know, however, that you can also use this system for the calendar? An example would be setting a category for the colour purple to denote a meeting, which can then be used when you are creating or accepting meetings so that within your calendar view you can easily see what meetings you have on any given day without having to read every entry.

5. Setting rules

You can assign rules for various reasons, but one of the most common is assigning a rule for emails received from contacts so that they automatically go into a selected folder. This helps to reduce your inbox being clogged up and allows you to sort out your various emails with little hassle, saving you precious time.

These are just 5 simple tips to get the most out of Outlook but, if you are ever experiencing issues or need a helping hand, you can rely on the trusted and friendly team at Rapid IT Support for all of your IT needs and guidance.