Look, I know some of these posts are stating the obvious, but this is a good place to start if you are new to running a computer and you need some security advice and some free programs.
Microsoft Safety and Security Centre.
There's good advice and some good free software here.
Also check out the Microsoft Security Scanner if you suspect you have a virus on your computer.
You just have to have some basic protection these days, and this is a good start.
Sometimes I fell a bit if a plonker pointing out these Microsoft sites, but they come in handy when you really need them. Believe. When you delete something vital in XP or Vista, this is where to come crawling for help.
Microsoft Help and Support.
* Use "Fix it" automated solutions to solve your problems
* Download Windows XP Service Pack 3
* Stop a print job that is stuck in the print queue
* Get the list of the keyboard shortcuts that are available in Microsoft Windows XP
* Connect and disconnect a network drive in Windows XP "
Checked April 2014 for link and relevance. Still valid for Windows XP and Windows 7
This is my site for links to Genuine Free Stuff as well as some useful advice. I use most of these programs regularly. It's good gear. It's all worth having.
** April 2014. Major revamp and update for relevance happening, especially now that support for Windows XP has ended, and now that we all are addicted to our Android phones. A lot of old stuff is going.
This post in particular started this whole website...
I have been building and using computers since about the Ice Age, from DOS 3 through to Windows 7.
I have been mucking about with mobile phones for quite some time, using Symbian S60 and then Android.
Press F8 at boot to start in safe mode - Windows XP and 7
To see the details of you computer, download, install and run 'Speccy' - shows Operating System, Firewall, Anti-virus and hardware.
If you think you have a virus, start here 'Free Online Virus Scan'. Try any or all, and be patient.