Is it cheaper to repair or replace your computer?

close-up of a laptop being repaired

Computer Repair Vs. Replacement

Today, there is a computer almost anywhere you look. In businesses, hospitals, manufacturing, government agencies, and homes – they are everywhere. From the time we wake up until we fall asleep, computers have something to do with our day. All of this has made a strong business in computer repairs

Sometimes though, it may be less expensive to replace a computer than to have a computer repair service. So, how much do computers cost to fix? The cost of computer repairs can have several factors and variables, like if it is a desktop or a laptop. The brand and the model will affect the cost too. When it comes to computer repairs, it is pretty much like automotive repairs. 

A software problem won’t require parts, but other types of computer repairs will be based on labor and parts. And while there aren’t a lot of tools like a mechanic shop has, there is certain computer repair equipment needed for computer repairs, most of it is basic and can be used on any brand and model. For the answer to the question, we found the basic pricing on some common repairs.

Laptop Computer Repairs: 

  • Keyboard Replacement Cost: Averages between $100 and $10 for most laptops, the exception being a Mac laptop because they require being completely dismantled for keyboard computer repair.
  • Water Damage Repair Cost: Minimal water damage, computer repairs average around $100.00 Extensive water damage can start around $250 and go upward. The time the computer was submerged in water will determine the cost. 
  • Fan Replacement Cost: Maybe one of the cheapest computer repairs around $20.00
  • Hard Drive Replacement Cost: Parts and labor for SATA hard drive computer repairs, the cost is around $120.00 with a 500 gigabyte. SSD (solid state drive) computer repairs for parts and labor is around $180.00 
  • Laptop Battery: Computer repairs for battery replacement can be as low as $30 and as high as $250. 
  • Other laptop computer repairs include replacing the Laptop Hinge, around $150, and Laptop Screen Repair between $125 and $195. 

Desktop Computer Repairs can range between $100 up to $1,000.  The labor is the most expensive part and with that in mind, many computer owners will choose to replace the computer before investing in computer repair. A basic rule to follow is if the cost of the repair is ¼ or more than the cost of a new one, buy a new one.

How do I check my computer for problems?

If you’re having issues with your computer running slow, you should know that computers get sluggish over time, usually because of how much has been stored on the hard drive. And if you don’t shut your computer down correctly, the files can be corrupted. Or maybe your computer keeps freezing.  Fortunately, or perhaps unfortunately, you can check your computer for problems before taking it in for computer repairs. 

Starting with Windows XP and 2000, computers came with a tool built in that will help you scan the hard drive to check for errors. This tool, Check Disk can be used following these steps: 

  • Open My Computer or go to the Start button and choose My Computer.
  • Right-click on the drive to be scanned.
  • Select Properties.
  • Select the Tools tab and click on the Check Now button.
  • Now click on Start for the scan to begin.

There is an option for Automatically Fix Errors and Attempt Recovery of Bad Sectors.  By choosing these options, Windows may be able to fix any errors found during the scan. 

How can I repair my laptop?

Today, there are YouTube videos that can walk you through most computer repairs your laptop may need, like replacing the cover, the screen, even the keyboard. You’ll want to make sure you have the proper tools, like small screwdrivers. 

In general, laptops are compact pieces of equipment. A person with large fingers may not be able to do all computer repairs needed and you’ll find taking it to shop for computer repairs. Then that brings the worry is it safe to send a computer for repair and can computer repair shops steal your data? 

If you’re sending your computer to a trusted and certified repair center, yes – it’s safe. However, there are computer technicians with bad intentions, even in the most trusted computer repairs center. So, yes again, your data can be hacked, spying tools or malware software can be installed if your computer gets in the wrong hands. 

technician repairing a computer

In Closing 

When you purchase your computer, whether it is a desktop or laptop, asking the seller where to repair the computer monitor is recommended. In most cases, where you purchase your computer will also offer computer repairs, often offering you a maintenance program that includes monthly updates and checkups. This is often the best place for any computer repairs you may need because they are going to want your repeat business. 

How important is antivirus software?

man shouting at his computer in frustration

How Antivirus Software Benefits You

Have you ever wondered why antivirus software is important? COVID, a human-contracted virus, all but stopped the world from spinning. Imagine what it would be like if a computer virus got into every computerized thing in our lives. 

In today’s world, technology is what sustains us, from the cell phone alarm that wakes us up each day to the computer controlling our security system when we go to bed. In between those, there are computers involved in our everyday life, even if we may not realize it. Without antivirus software installation in our computers, our world wouldn’t quit spinning, but it would certainly slow way down. 

What are computer viruses?

Just like we wonder about this COVID virus and so many others that exist, don’t you wonder what computer viruses are? A computer virus is a malicious code or program that is written by humans with ill intent. They write these codes and programs to alter how a computer operates. They are designed to spread between computers through shared files and networks by affixing or inserting themselves into what appears to be a legitimate document or program. 

So where do these viruses come from, how do computer viruses spread, and just as important, why do computer viruses exist? Many computer viruses spread via mass-emailing of “worms” that open up doors to Botnets. From there, cybercriminals emerge and they push out Botnets of infected malware. That malware gives these cybercriminals, aka hackers, control of computers. They use that control to take over bank information, credit cards, and even Social Security numbers, all for their own financial gain. Antivirus software installation is designed to stop the viruses that cybercriminals develop.  

Now, with that short lesson on how computer viruses work, you may be wondering how antivirus software works. With antivirus software installation, a computer scans all incoming codes and files that are passed through network traffic. Antivirus software companies assemble an extensive database of known malware and viruses, and then “teach” this antivirus software they’ve designed to detect, flag, and remove the virus before it can do any harm. 

Can antivirus software remove viruses?

Yes and no. Antivirus software installation is just a step in the prevention of computer viruses. Antivirus software will prevent virus-corrupted files from being downloaded onto computers and try to prevent any virus from activating if it does get past the antivirus. 

So, no it isn’t removing the virus-laden file, but it does a good job of stopping the viruses from being downloaded. However, some viruses can still get past the defenses granted by antivirus software installation, though not without being flagged as malware. After that, the malware software installation will remove it. In essence, antivirus software installation is Robin, and malware software installation is Batman. The duo works together in keeping our computers safe from the evil doings of cybercriminals and computer hackers.

Can you still get a computer virus with antivirus software? 

Yes, even with the best of the best antivirus software installation and malware installation, there are viruses that can get past them and cause havoc. Fortunately, there are computer virus removal software programs available to save the day. You can protect a computer by installing an antivirus program designed to clean computer systems safely of any virus that has made it way past Batman and Robin. However, there are specific conditions that have to be adhered to for these programs to run effectively and safely. 

What types of computer viruses are out there?

Just like humans, computers catch viruses that spread from one to another until there is a mass infection. Some of the most common computer viruses that IT specialists are constantly battling are: 


The resident virus sets up shop in the RAM part of a computer and interferes with the system’s operations. This sneaky virus can even attach to anti-virus software. 


The multipartite virus infects the whole system and spreads by executing unsanctioned actions on the computer operating system, folders, and the installed programs.


This virus functions by targeting specific file types, typically .exe files (executable files). It does this by duplicating and infecting files. Fortunately, because it has a targeted nature it is easy to detect with antivirus software installations and easy to remove.


This virus can infect the browser on a computer, redirecting the user to malicious websites. However, it is another virus that is easily detected by antivirus software installations. 


As indicated by the name, this virus will overwrite the content of files and infect all the folders, files, and computer programs installed on a computer.


This virus is sneaky and disguises itself within ads, coding of links, images, videos, and even site code. It can infect computer systems when a user downloads malicious files or visits a malicious website.


Like the Direct Action virus, this virus targets .exe files (executable files) and slows down programs, causing system file damage when the programs are run by a user. 


This virus travels through network connections, replicating through shared resources.


This virus is easy to avoid as it hides in the files on email attachments or on a USB drive. If it gets activated, it infects the master boot record and damages the system.

What computer virus is the worst?

What costs American businesses over $100 billion dollars each year? Computer viruses! This is why companies are hiring the best IT specialists to implement the best antivirus software installation possible. While all of this costs money, they can’t afford to not be vigilant. Ten of the worse computer viruses in recent times have been:

  • Code Red
  • Melissa
  • Storm Trojan
  • Sasser
  • My Doom
  • Zeus
  • Conficker
  • Stuxnet
  • CryptoLocker
laptop being checked with a stethoscope

In Closing

All of this helpful information can be confusing and overwhelming. If you don’t have an IT specialist on your team, you’re probably wondering, “How do I choose antivirus software?” The perfect scenario is to choose an antivirus software installation that is lightweight, meaning it won’t slow your computer down but will offer a high rate of detection while blocking anything malicious. Here are a few tips on what is important in an antivirus software installation: 

  • Database of Known Malware – Without this database, your antivirus software installation won’t know what to look for.
  • Update Automatically – An antivirus software installation should have automatic updates to keep things clean. Choose one that updates quickly and frequently. 
  • Removes Malware – Robin’s job isn’t complete if Batman doesn’t do his job.
  • Ransomware Protection – Choose an antivirus software installation that comes with this protection to keep your files from being encrypted by unwanted cybercriminals.
  • File Shredder – “Delete” doesn’t really get rid of files – you probably know that, right? You want your antivirus software installation to include a file shredder to actually clear the files that you don’t need or want anymore.
  • Firewall – Choose an antivirus software installation that will scan internet traffic for any incoming threats. After that, Robin and Batman can concentrate on the things that got through and not worry about what’s coming in.

Other features an antivirus software installation should include are DNS protection and password manager. Browser protection, System Optimization, Phishing protection, and Antispam are good to have too.

How long does screen repair take?

Close-up of a cracked screen.

Dealing With Screen Damage

Technology is wonderful, isn’t it?  With the 2020 Quarantine, many of us ended up working from home with a laptop, and if you have kids, that could be creating a setting for a screen to be damaged. Heck, even without kids, laptop screens get damaged, but does that mean you need a new laptop? Or is screen repair possible? 

Can you repair screen scratches?

Having that annoying scratch on a computer screen or television screen is one of the worst things – especially if you’re on your computer all day. If you’re working or playing games, a computer screen scratch can cause you to hit the wrong key. It can distort what you’re seeing, like having that scratch on your new sunglasses. 

Here are few tips to do your own screen repair on any computer screens, laptop screens, flat television screens, DLP screensLCD monitorsLED Screens, even plasma screens, and more.

  1. Wipe the scratched screen with a clean microfiber cloth or cotton ball. 
  2. Put a dab of hand lotion or petroleum jelly on the cotton ball or your finger.
  3. With a gentle push, rub the hand lotion or petroleum jelly into the scratch.
  4. Keep applying small amounts until the scratch is filled in. 
  5. Let the petroleum jelly or hand lotion sit for a few minutes in the screen scratch.
  6. After a 3 to 5 minutes, use a clean microfiber cloth and wipe away the hand lotion or petroleum jelly very gently.
  7. Note: Too much pressure will remove it all and you need to leave some in the scratch. 
  8. Repeat this process as much as needed until the scratch is gone. 

This works on minor scratches – big deep scratches or cracks, you’ll need to take your item in for professional assessment if screen repair is possible. Now, another question – does a screen repair fix an LCD too? Yes, minor scratches can be fixed on an LCD using these steps. You can also find screen repair kits at your local big box stores where electronics are sold. 

Why is screen repair so expensive? 

Just like your dentist, a medical doctor or mechanic, computer repair technicians have specialized training in their field.  They pay for the education and certification, like A+ and others.  It can cost around $20 per hour, much like a plumber, or they may have a flat rate for screen repairs. 

A professional screen repair can cost around $300 and up. Or, if you have any technical background you can do your own or by purchasing the new screen between $50 and up to $100 online and replace it yourself. Like anything these days, you can find several YouTube videos online to walk you through the process. 

Is screen repair worth it?

With the information we provided above for screen repair cost by a professional, you can expect to pay a minimum of $300 plus parts. A new laptop, depending on what you need can be as low as $300 and upwards into the thousands. Again, it depends on what you need on your laptop.

It can also be based on what is on your current computer that you can’t afford to lose.  Deciding if a computer screen repair is worth the cost is a personal choice. Which is cheaper, screen repair or replacement will be a decision you’ll need to weigh out and decide.

Is there screen repair with warranty?

This will be up to the computer shop you use for your screen repair. In most cases, probably not because they have no control over how you use your computer.  They can only warranty the screen replacement and the work they do. 

Laptop with a cracked screen

Closing Words

If you breathe, live, and depend on your laptop for work, the muffling “CRACK” of a broken screen can be heart-stopping. Maybe it was dropped, stepped on, something heavy leaned against it, or it was just clumsiness. It doesn’t matter – you likely can’t use it until you have the screen repaired or replaced. 

Or maybe you’re working away and all of the sudden, you have a bright color on the screen (no, not the dreaded blue is dead screen), or there is nothing but bars running across or vertical lines. This is common when there is an electrical connection failure. Again, it doesn’t matter, does it? You just need computer screen repair now. 

Guess what? It isn’t the end of the world. It is a bump in the road, but often a screen repair is all you need. The cost of a screen repair vs LCD repair can start as low as $70 for labor up toward $180, along with the cost of the screen itself if screen repair isn’t possible and a new screen is required. 

It is recommended if this computer screen repair is for an essential computer for your business or work to use a certified and registered computer tech company. Finding one that is 3rd party authorized is akin to finding an authorized mechanic to work on your BMW. Or having a dentist do your open-heart surgery. 

Computers are cheaper than they were just ten years ago, but they can be expensive, and they can contain information you’ve worked on that is expensive or sensitive.  Never trust your computer to somebody that doesn’t prove their certified expertise. If you need help with screen repair in Long Island, NY reach out to TotalTech Repair at (631) 517-0021 today.

Are Home Theaters Worth It?

home theater set up

What is home theater installation? 

Things sure have come a long way haven’t they, like television.  Philo Taylor Farnsworth invented demonstrated the first electronic television in 1927. Considering his home didn’t have electricity until he was 14 makes that even more amazing.  Today, we have big flat screen televisions, many homes have one in every room of the house. The more common thing today is having a home theater installation. Farnsworth wouldn’t believe what his descendants have in their homes! 

As the cost of electronics have dropped, the popularity of having a home theater installation has become more popular over the past few years. In fact, the builders of higher end homes offer a home theater installation. So, a home theater setup with tv and surround sound though. 

A home theater is actually theater quality comfort, sight, and sounds.  to enjoy remarkable sound and video quality in the comfort of your own home. The components of a home theater installation includes a mixture, or all of the following: 

  • Television set with large flat screen
  • DVD player
  • Blu Ray, DVR, or VCR unit
  • Surround Sound 
  • Speakers

Along with all of those components there is the storage for all along with the cables, connectors, wiring, surge protectors, etc.  Then there is the consideration of how to connect and hook up all of this equipment, without any wires showing. So, do you need an electrician or a home theater installation professional? 

Who does home theater installation?

In addition to determining what equipment is needed and what are the must-have components for a home theater installation, there is the actual installation. Here are 7 areas to think it through before deciding this is a great DIY project: 

1. Attic or Crawl Space

You’ll need to run cabling and wiring for the television, speakers, surround sound, and more. For that, do you have access to your attic or crawl space, or do you have crown molding in the room? Attic and crawl space will make the job easier and faster, but the addition of crown molding will work for hiding the audio and video cables and wiring. For the video portion, you’ll HDMI, and a cable that is long enough run between the AV receiver to the television. Then there is the wiring for the audio portion, will you have speakers in the walls or the ceiling?  

2. First Home Theater Installation or Expanding A Current One

If you haven’t ever assembled a home theater installation, you may find yourself getting overwhelmed. However, if you currently have a home theater, installation of more speakers or other new hardware won’t be as confusing. 

3. Home Renovation Experience

Installing and setting up a home theater installation will require some basic  home construction. You’re going to be cutting holes and setting up low voltage boxes, locating wiring, and then there are the tools you’ll need.  

4. The Required Tools

For a successful home theater installation, you’ll need some specific tools and the knowledge how to use them. Among those tools are: 

  • Cordless drill
  • Keyhole saw
  • Stud finder
  • Hammer
  • Fish Rods
  • Box knife
  • Wire cutters/strippers
  • Tape measure
  • Paddle bits
  • Low voltage boxes and kit

If your home theater installation is going to require a room being built, or you’re planning on finishing out the attic, basement, or garage, you’re going to need some addition tools. These addition tools are needed for building walls, closing off doors, etc. The basic tools for this home construction includes: 

  • Cordless circular saw
  • Cordless reciprocating saw
  • Level
  • Pneumatic nail gun
  • Electrical box
  • Electrical outlets
  • Electrical cable

5. The Time

This is going to be more than one day project, and if you’re finishing out or building a room, it is definitely more than a weekend DIY project. So, make sure you aren’t taking on too much. You don’t want to get started then have a business trip that takes you away for 10 days. Of if you have young children or active teens in the house, do you have spare time for a project this entailed? 

6. Budgeting 

The budget for a home theater installation may be more than you’re thinking. Beyond the components, there is the furnishing, lumber, tools, etc. Yes furnishing – you’re going to want comfortable seating once that home theater installation is complete. 

7. Soundproofing

Soundproofing a home theater installation can be difficult, but so necessary. If the walls are down to the studs, soundproofing won’t be as difficult. You need to consider not just the theater sound escaping into the rest of the house, but the other sounds of your house getting into the home theater, like the kitchen, laundry room, bathroom, and the HVAC system. 

Should I get a home theater system or a soundbar?

It depends on what you prefer.  A soundbar is going to deliver the audio “AT” you from the front. A home theater system will surround you in sound like the theater. 

What is the ideal size for a home theater room?

Use your own eyes and ears to determine what is best for your home theater installation. If you follow all the marketing hype and suggestions, you could get more than you need or will ever use.  Things you need to consider are: 

  • The television and speakers need to fit the room size. 
  • The angle and distance of the seating in relation to the screen and speakers. 
  • The acoustics are affected by the furnishings, materials, and shape of the room. 
  • Consider the exterior windows and the interior lighting of the room when positioning the television. 
  • Make sure you have adequate ventilation for the room to keep viewers comfortable. 

How do I know what size my home theater screen is?

If you have a projector screen currently and need to replace it, grab your tape measure, and see what you have. The most common measurement of screens and televisions is diagonal. Measure the screen length from the top-left to the bottom-right for the diagonal screen size.

How far should you sit from a 120 inch screen?

It will depend on the size of your home theater and where your 120-inch screen is installed in that room.  For a cinema at home setup, the formula that most audio-visual companies use is a ratio for seat-to-screen distance is 100.8 inches back from a 120-inch screen. 

flat screen tv

Are home theaters worth it?

If movie watching is your thing, then yes, absolutely a home theater installation is worthwhile. You won’t have to go to an actual theater anymore, and with today’s concerns about Corona and other illness, this will be the safer way to watch your favorite movies. If you decide to sell your home, a $20,000 investment for home theater installation, real estate experts estimate you can see approximately 65% back on that investment.

So, maybe you’re not so confident about doing your own home theater installation? Do an internet search for “professional home cinema installation near me” or get a list of recommendations from the store where you purchase the electronics. Most stores contract with 3rd party installers that are certified in the brands they sell. Call (631) 517-0021 today for your home theater system in Long Island, NY.

What are print designs?

printer creating business documents

Why print design?

Every business owner wants their business to stand out above the competition. This is done with the biggest sign on the building, the fanciest business cards, radio and television advertising, and good old fashion word-of-mouth. What works better today than all of that is print design for business advertising. 

With print design, focus is on your business name, branding, and what product or services are offered. With print design for businesses, you can create a unique design and logo that will become your branding and get your company recognized as soon as that logo is spotted. Nike would be one example – that swoosh logo says it all without saying anything. 

With print design and signage, you can’t help but get your company’s name out there and recognized. For a new business, its all about establishing your branding and for an established business, it’s all about keeping your branding recognized. What better way to do that than working with an experienced print designer? 

What does a print designer do?

A print designers is where to print graphic design is done, usually in a digital format these days. They work with you client on a print design for business from the concept and design of an emblem, logo, or symbol to the end product. That end product is then printed on various materials in a physical form in any of the following and more: 

  • Ceramic
  • Cloth
  • Glass
  • Metals
  • Paper
  • Plastic 

The print design business is found any direction you look on any given day, all day. If you’re reading this piece on a computer, there is a logo on there somewhere that stated out as concept print design for business, like the Apple, Hewlett Packard, or Texas Instrument logos.

You cell phone has a brand name and logo on it, your tennis shoes, your car, and the components that create your car all have what was once an idea for a print design for business.  When you attend a function like a business trade show or an event like a concert, a rodeo, or any type of gathering, they are either handing things out with a print design for business logo or the theme of the event. 

A print designer works with a business owner to create those print design for business logos and themes. They help design something that is catchy and stands out from the competition. They often help a business owner choose the company “colors” and even the company “message”. 

What makes a good print design?

Designing a great end product that is deliverable is a creative process that is appreciated by many but understood by few. The aspect of how the print design for business goes from concept to computer screen to the finished product. The print design for businesses should fit their branding and the concept should be seen and understood across all platforms the print design is use.  A good print design for business will include the following five qualities: 

  • Readability: The style should be a simple read with a layout that aims so the viewer does not have to work at uncovering the message in a font that is easily read.
  • Placement: Keep it every print design for business clear and un-muddled. When print design for business is muddled, it loses the viewer’s attention and focus. Don’t keep it all centered with lots of white space and don’t feel every space has to be used. 
  • Audience: A good print design for business should stay focused on the intended audience. The information for any print desig for business should have an acceptable and direct message for the targeted audience. 
  • Grammar and Spelling: Poor grammar and spelling shows customers that errors and glitches are acceptable. A print design for business that has errors will stick with the branding and the targeted audience will loose confidence in that business. 
  • Layout: With a good print design for business, know what you want the reader to see first and what is important to see last for that lasting impression. Remember the average view will read from left to right, anything out of that normal can be confusing and the branding and message are lost. 

What is the difference between print design vs graphic design? 

To summarize the answer: A great print design for business will be a dreadful web design. The big canvas size print design is a controlled layout that makes it visually superior. A graphic design is engaging and interactive. The two media forms have many differences and different approaches are needed to use the strength each has to offer. 

  • Print design allows the eyes to “walk” over the information provided, being selective at what they want to see.  
  • Web design allows the hands to move around to what the user wants to see by clicking and scrolling. 

Why is print design important?

Having print design for business that is effective, well-designed in marketing materials builds your brand recognition and contributes to your business credibility. The branding that print design for business creates a connection emotionally and visually with the client base and future clients. Call (631) 517-0021 today to get started on your print design needs in Long Island, NY.

What are the basics of network security?

network cable

Is security a threat?

Today, online theft is becoming more rampant, regardless of the government making punishment stricter and tougher. A business that handles customer’s personal information can’t afford to have their network hacked for several reasons. A hacker can ruin a business’ reputation and standing, not to mention the damage they can do to the customers with the information they’ve stolen.  This is why network security is so important to every business, no matter how big or small.

What about your network security at home though? This can be as devasting as your personal information being stolen from the restaurant or stores you frequent. Most homeowners have at least one computer in their home, many of us have multiple units that access the internet. Even our cell phones today are internet accessible, which means they are at risk without network security in place. 

Those who create and generate computer security threats are a relentless and inventive sort of people. They are the masters of disguise with extreme skills in manipulation and are constantly evolving to find other ways to cause harm and steal from others. 

It is only wise to implement a network security system to protect yourself and your personal information, including your finances. A network security is used to protect system from hackers and the following threats that are out here every day, all day: 

  •  Viruses: Everyone that has used a computer at any point know that a computer virus is the biggest security network. A computer virus can alter how your computer operates whether you give it permission or not. It will replicate and then execute itself and proceed to damage a computer beyond anything the average  person can remove or repair. 
  • Spyware: A serious computer network security threat, this program monitors all online activities. Spyware will  install a program without your consent that captures all personal information, including credit cards, debit cards, and banking information and use that information for profit. 
  • Hackers, Predators: Computers are not the guilty ones, they are the tool that the guilty uses to create malware and computer network security threats. Those are the hackers and predators with programming knowledge and skills and use that to victimize other people for financial gain. The government is making punishments harder for cyber theft, but it still out there, threatening everyone’s network security. 
  • Phishing: Everyone and every business you “meet” on the internet doesn’t have good intentions, even though they may appear to be of trusting contact. These are phishers are out here masquerading as a business or person you want to do business with but they are only working you to get your sensitive information, both financial and personal. They approach through email or instant messages with fraudulent plans known as phishing attacks, the latest in cybercrime activity. 

 What are the types of network security?

Cybercrime is fast growing, and experts predict the damage from cybercrime to reach over  $6 trillion by the end of 2021. The network security basics we had just 5 years ago isn’t strong any more and developers are working to improve network security every day. It is an ongoing job to stay ahead of cybercriminals. 

Some of types of network security tools that business use, and some can be used at home too include:

  • Access control. This controls which users can access your network, helpful for protecting sensitive sections like financial information.  
  • Antivirus and anti-malware. Malware is a common form of cybercrime attacks and it can come in various shapes and sizes. Some of these work quickly and delete files or even corrupt data, a problem that you’ve heard happening to larger companies. Most likely, you received notices if your personal information was involved at your bank or favorite store. 
  • Application security. Each device and software used within your network is a pace for hackers to get inside and do damage. This is why it is important to allow your computer to do updates so that cyber-attacks can be prevented.  
  • Email security. Email is something that we take for granted in our homes, but at work, it is an important factor that must be protected by implementing network security tools.  Protection from threat vectors with malware, phishing, and scams is necessary to protect your home computer just as much as it is a business’ network. 
  • Firewalls. Firewalls are common element for network security. This is the gatekeeper between your home network and the wide word of the internet. Incoming and outgoing information is protected which helps prevent cyber threats and cybercrime access.
  • Mobile device security. You’d be hard pressed to find a home that doesn’t have at least one person with a mobile device, chances are everyone in your home has one. Each of those have personal and often sensitive data that needs to be  protected from hackers.             

What are the 4 types of networks?

A group of computers that are linked together create a computer network. This is commonly found in business, but many homes have multiple computers linked to the modem and some are set up where they can communicate with each other or with the printer/scanner. The four computer networks are: 

  • Local Area Network
  • Personal Area Network
  • Metropolitan Area Network
  • Wide Area Network

What are the three main threats to networks?

For home network security , the most common security threats are: 

  • Computer viruses
  • Computer worms
  • Trojan horse

Other threat for home network security include, Adware, DOS and DDOS attack, QL injection attack, Phishing, Rootkit, Rogue security software, Spyware, and Man-in-the-middle.

woman enjoying secure connection

What are the 5 reasons to network security problems?

Seems like there is something new every day doesn’t it?  At work, you have an IT team to watch out for you, but at home, you’re on your own. Currently, the top five cyber network security threats that you need to be aware of at home are, and not listed in order of importance because they are all dangerous to your home network security: 

  • Data leaks
  • Hackers
  • Insider threat
  • Phishing
  • Ransomware

Because you don’t have an IT team watching out for you at home, every homeowner should know the network security or cyber security safety protocol and how to check your network security. Here are 5 things you need to do to check your home’s network security. 

  1. Test the Firewall Weaknesses: The firewall is the first port to your internet security. If it is weak, your network security is weak. 
  2. Test the  Antivirus Strength: A strong antivirus software will secure everything that is  downloaded, keeping anything that is malicious out of your network security system.
  3. Check the Browsing Protocol: Data and information sent to a website that is HTTP protocol does not encrypt your personal data like credit cards. Never send information to a site that doesn’t have HTTPS in the payment section of the web address. 
  4. Hacker Router Security: The central hub to your home internet and network is the router. If anyone outside of your home can access your computer through the router, you’re an open target for hackers.  
  5. Check for Leaks in the VPN Connection: If you are working from home with a VPN, make sure it doesn’t have a leak that is pulling information from your computer. If you’ve never used a VPN, then you don’t have any worries. 

Need network security in Long Island, NY? TotalTech Repair is here to assist! Call us today at (631) 517-0021!

Do TVs come with mounting brackets?

tv mount on wall

Do TV mounts have to be on studs?

Wow, back before 2000, other than in a bar, hospital, or hotel room, why would you need bracket for a TV mount?!  When it comes to televisions, things have changed a lot the past 20 years, even the past 10 years.  Everyday, something new is coming out with televisions it seems. 

A television isn’t in a console or sitting on a TV stand anymore. They are bigger but yet lighter, and tv mount to drywalls today, with the wiring often hid in the wall behind it. If you’re the average person, you probably don’t know how a TV mounts to the wall, or how to wire it so the wiring doesn’t show. You may be asking “…. is tv mounting hard?”, as you watch the contractor installing and mounting yours. 

Mounting tv can’t find studs is a common problem, but not one that can’t be worked around. Other methods of mounting a TV on a wall without studs can be done by any of these methods, keeping the TV’s size and weight in mind: 

Molly Bolts or Toggle Anchors: When you don’t have wall studs, this is one of the best and easiest ways to get your TV mounted to the wall. Consider the size and weight of the TV and then find a molly bolt or anchor that matches the matching shape, size, and the type of wall you’re mounting the TV to.

These types of fasteners go direct through the wall then anchor to themselves on the back.  The toggle at the end is what will prevent your TV from coming off, making this a sturdy option for a TV mount system. The  wall is resistant to TV weight force and no, the wall won’t collapse or crumble. 

  • Mounting Plate: Another choice you may consider is a mounting plate that is installed with the toggle anchors described above. These are metal or plywood and have the option to use more anchors for security. This method has the least visual appeal and isn’t a popular choice for homes.
  • The Ceiling: Not a common option, but it offers a touch of sophistication and no studs are needed, but you may need professional help for installing. A ceiling with beams are ideal for a TV mount, providing the same result that wall studs would. The ceiling height and TV weight need to be factored in before you move forward with this option. 

What size screw do I need to mount my TV?

It is funny how when something new comes out, in this case, flat screen televisions and TV mounting, it creates the need for something else and to standardize the basics, like screws. If the TV mount you are installing has VESA screws, the bracket and screws will be universal. 

What is VESA? Video Electronics Standards Association, the standard size that was created for the measurements or locations of the TV mount threaded screw holes of any brand LED TV are the same. 

When the flat screen TV mount started, the diameter and thread of the screws were different for each manufacturer, thus making it difficult for you, or a professional, to do a TV mount. Today, they are required to be consistent within the industry, making life so much easier for us consumers! 

So, the answer to your question is , measurements are metric, even in the United States. Depending on your TV mount size, you can cross-reference to the screw size needed:

The Hole PatternThe Screw Size
75MM x 35MMM4 X 8MM
75MM X 75MMM4 X 10MM
100MM X 100MMM4 X 10MM
200MM X 200MMM6 X 8MM
people enjoying mounted tv

Do TV wall mounts leave big holes? And Does mounting a TV damage the wall?

 If you haven’t done a  tv mount or stand for your new TV won’t work, the wall TV mount is the most obvious option. You need to use a wall with a solid wall stud because a regular drywall will not support the weight of a TV. Even with all the molly bolts and toggle anchors you use, it will in short time, fall off the wall. Yes, that will tear out the drywall with the TV mount, TV, and anchors or bolts. 

What if you can’t find a wall stud? Then we recommend hiring a professional service for your TV mount project.  It may be some money to spend, but its is better than having to replace the drywall and all that entails. When you have a professional do your TV mount, have them take it down should you move or want to move the TV mount. This will minimize any possible wall damage, and if there is wall damage, it will be their responsibility. 

As we mentioned earlier all TV manufacturers adhere to the VESA screw, the universal screw that allows all TV mounting jobs to use the same size screw. You need to choose a wall that has wall studs or use any of the other methods we have reviewed here. The other option is to hire a professional to complete your TV mount project. 

Another bonus about TVs today, you can choose a tilt tv mount vs full motion, which means, you can choose a fixed TV mount or a tilting TV mount, adjustable based on screen sizes between 19” and 65”. The main factor you need to be concerned with is the TV’s weight and whether your wall is going to be able to handle that without damaging the wall, or the TV if it falls. Call (631) 517-0021 today for help with TV mounts in Long Island, NY.

What Is the Ideal Size for a Home Theater Room?

A Home Theater Set-Up

What is the ideal size for a home theater room?

We’re spending a lot of time at home these days looking for ways to stay entertained. One of the best ways to improve your entertainment experience while at home is to install a home theater. How much room do you need to create an ideal home theater experience? Ideally, the more space you have, the better. That said, for the most immersive experience you ideally want to have a space that measures 20-feet long by 15-feet wide. Unless you already have the space, or you’re planning to do some serious remodeling, with the right tweaking most people can make do with the space they already have. If you are considering home theater installation in Long Island, NY, TotalTech Repair can transform any room into an entertainment center. Get started by calling (631) 517-0021.

How do I setup a home theater in a small room?

While a large room is ideal for a home theater installation, not everyone has the space available. If you want to create a home theater but only have a small space in which to do it, you’ll have to put quite a bit of thought into these elements:

  • Sound: For a fully immersive experience, the sound is one of the most important aspects of your home theater. You want to get a surround-sound effect without drowning in noise. For a small room, even a 3.1 system can be adequate, even though this isn’t true surround sound. A 5.1 surround-sound system should be more than enough for a small room.
  • Seating: You’re going to have to find a balance between space and comfort when it comes to seating in a small room. You’ll have to determine exactly how many people you want to be seated and how much space you want between seats. You also want to determine an ideal space between your seats and screen. Eighteen- to 24-inches between rows is typical seat spacing.
  • Location of your TV or screen: The space between seats and screen will be just as important to the experience as sound. You can determine the minimum distance between your screen and seating by multiplying the horizontal length of the screen by two or get the maximum distance by multiplying this length by five.

How do I know what size my home theater screen is?

Whether you’re using a projector or a TV, having the right size screen for your home theater can make or break the viewing experience. For the best viewing experience, you’re going to place your seats at a minimum distance that’s about twice the screen’s horizontal length. Several websites provide screen size calculators to help you determine the best size screen for your home theater.

Is a home theater system worth it?

If you are thinking about a home theater installation, will it really be worth your while to do so? Here are some pros and cons to weigh:


  • You have complete control over how you consume your media. You can watch movies and TV or play games or listen to music. You can pause or rewind when you want or need to do so.
  • Long-term savings. You won’t need to go to movie theaters because you can replicate the experience at home.
  • You’re able to entertain several guests with movie nights or watch parties for sports or other events.


  • Significant upfront investment in technology including projectors and sound systems.
  • Will probably need some kind of noise dampening material.
  • Activities in the room are limited to entertainment.

Does a home theater increase home value?

Several things will influence whether or not a home theater installation will add to your home’s value. Currently, because so many people are staying at home and looking for entertainment avenues, installing a home theater will add value to your home. If you live in a neighborhood where more homes have them than not, they can be a selling point. If you don’t have a home theater but another home in the neighborhood does, that home might sell faster and at a higher price because of it. On the other hand, especially in the current market, installing a home theater for the sake of having a home theater as a selling point might not prove a good return on investment.

What is home theater installation?

Home theater installation can mean many things, but primarily it’s taking extra space in your home and turning it into a high-tech entertainment center. This could mean anything from installing a large-screen TV, a sound system, and some comfortable recliners to replicating a movie theater or even building a separate structure that includes a screen and projector, as well as multiple theater-style seats.

Home theater installation hardware

A home theater is going to require you to install high-tech gadgetry of all kinds. At the very least you’re going to need a sound system that projects well to give you a great experience. Most home theaters have screens and projectors installed, as well as theater-style seating.

People Enjoy a Home Theater.

Who does home theater installation?

Because home theaters require a lot of high-tech devices, you’ll want to make sure everything works just right. For that, you’ll need the help of experts. When it comes to expert home theater installation and repair in Long Island, NY, few professionals can outmatch the team at TotalTech Repair. Begin immersing yourself in an entertainment experience today by calling (631) 517-0021.

How do I set up a new desktop computer?

desktop set up

What should I do first with a new computer?

Technology is a wonderful things these days. Until your computer screen goes blue. Oh no, the dreaded blue screen. If you’ve used computers very much at all in the past 20 years, you know what I’m talking about. When that blue screen appears, there isn’t much to do except buy a new computer. Then you have to deal with a new computer setup, and while it really isn’t that complicated, many people still struggle with the process. 

When you work for a company and have an office computer setup need, there is typically an IT team that does the computer setup for you. When you work for yourself, or you work remote for a company from your home, you usually have to do your own computer setup. Or the other option is to pay big money for a computer guru to come do it for you. In this article today, we’re going to answer some common questions about computer setup and share some computer setup ideas with you. 

No matter what brand of computer or what operating system it comes with, there are four essential things you need to do for your computer setup. These need to be completed before you start surfing the internet or playing game, and you don’t need to be a computer geek whiz either: 

  • Install an Anti-Malware Program: The last thing your new computer needs is malware infection. Installing an anti-malware program must be the first thing you do, because as soon as you connect to the internet, your computer is vulnerable. Chances are, your new computer has one installed already, but it will need updating. After your computer setup is complete, look in the settings and click on update the definitions, then follow instructions.  
  • Install Updates: Yes, for what you pay for a computer, you would think it comes all updated and ready to go, but nope, that isn’t how it works. Because companies like Microsoft release updates almost daily, the time your new computer was sitting on a shelf waiting for a new owner, there were updates being released. The update will likely have driver updates that you’ll need to install for any of your hardware to work, including the keyboard, mouse, speakers, or computer setup with tv, any type of peripherals. There are free driver update tools available that you can download that will get this all done for you automatically. No matter how you do it, your new computer setup will need to have these updates. 
  • File Recovery: This is critical when doing your computer setup, even though you haven’t even used your computer yet. Installing it now before you need it because if you install after you’ve accidently deleted files may not get them. 
  • Uninstall Programs: Confused? Read on for explanation. Computers come from the manufacturer with software loaded on them, and it is usually promo advertising and stuff that you’re not going to need or want. The more programs that are on your computer, along with the stuff your computer setup is downloading, the faster you’re going to run out of memory. You can remove them one by one through the control panel or use a free uninstaller tool. 

What do I need to set up my PC? and How do I connect my desktop?

Getting a new computer can be exciting, dreadful, but exciting all at the same time. It isn’t an exact science, but the computer setup is the most dreaded part. That is because you know that if you don’t do it right, or you skip something, you could experience some problems later. Here we offer step-by-step instructions the most efficient and safest way: 

1 – If this computer setup is an upgrade computer, copy the files you need or want on the new computer using an USB flash drive. When your new computer setup is complete, you can then copy those file onto the new unit. 

2 – Unpack your new computer, carefully removing the packaging then follow the manufacturer’s computer setup instructions. Most have a picture step-by-step guide in a fold-out poster style today. If this is a desktop PC, you’ll need to unpack the keyboard, monitor, and mouse to, connecting them as indicated on the fold-out poster. 

3- Turn the modem and router on and make sure the Internet is connected and on.  

4 – If your computer setup without Wi-Fi and going to be hardwired to the Internet, use an Ethernet cable to connect your PC to the router or modem if you aren’t using a router. 

5 – Turn the power on to your new PC and follow the initial Window setup prompts to complete your computer setup. 

6 -Follow the steps we provided above about installing anti-malware and anti-virus protection, uninstalling unwanted pre-loaded software, run the updates, and other items we mentioned for a new computer setup.         

What are the steps in starting a computer?

Computers are a part of everyone’s lives today, whether you want them to be or not, and computer setup can be daunting for many. Here are some general steps, along with the information we’ve mentioned here already, to get your new computer setup and going:

  • Locate the power button on the tower PC and press it. The computer will go into a boot up process and well tell the computer what to do when. 
  • The operating system will load during this process. Some computers will load faster than others. 
  • Login to the operating system if you have it set up with password protection. If you don’t, the computer will boot up into desktop.

At this point, your computer setup is done, and you should be ready to start surfing the internet, working on your term paper, or playing Candy Crush.  What if your computer doesn’t power on? Check all the cables are connected and all the plugs are securely plugged, and power strips are turned on. 

If your computer turns on, but isn’t doing anything, check that the monitor is connected to the tower and plugged into the electricity. If you still aren’t getting anything, you’ll need to get some experienced help from a family member, friend, or take to the store where you purchased it. 

If the operating system doesn’t load, that could be a corrupt operation system. This comes from a virus (this is why you need to download a virus protection immediately). It could also be a faulty driver or hardware failure.  Regardless the problem, it is going to need professional help to get your computer setup completed. 

Person enjoying desktop after set up

What is the best PC setup?

With COVID-19, many of us found ourselves working from home and unprepared for that task. Some companies had computers issued to employees and delivered to them, but this left you doing you own computer setup.  This includes the furniture as well as the technical stuff. We are going to provide a list of things you need to consider acquiring just in case this stay in place goes on longer.

  • A suitable desk and comfortable chair
  • Fast internet connection
  • Audio and video  equipment for those Zoom meetings
  • Fast and responsive hardware and peripherals

Working from home, there are three components that are important for most people: a CPU, RAM, and SSD. These are the backbone of a computer setup that is fast and responsive to make those deadlines. If your job is heavy in graphics, you need a good GPU too. 

Headphones and microphones, or headsets that have both, can get expensive. If this is coming out of your wallet, don’t go cheap just because its cheap, but you don’t have to take on a second mortgage either. 

Now that you have directions and instructions how to get your computer set up as well as how to setup a work from home station, you’ll be able to handle your own IT calls before you know it! Call (631) 517-0021 today for help with your desktop in Long Island, NY.

Can I Set Up My Own Universal Remote?

Tv universal remote

What is a universal remote and why do I need a universal remote? 

How many times have you lost the remote control to your television, or any device with a remote control? They get shoved between the cushions, dropped, and kicked under the sofa, or accidentally thrown away. I have even found the TV remote in my pocket later in the day while at work! Sometimes they are lost forever though and that is why we are thankful to have the universal remote, setup can be done for the TV, cable box, even the stereo today. 

A universal remote can be the savior of your sanity! This is a handheld unit that when programmed and setup can control your television, cable box, surround sound, and other audio/video devices. A universal remote setup can work on any brand, even if the television is one brand and the surround sound is another brand. 

Why do you need a universal remote control? Well, we can’t really say you ‘NEED’ one, but imagine how much easier it would be to have all your audio and visual equipment operated with only one remote? A universal remote setup can do that for you. Gone are the days that you a ‘remote boat’ like Robert gave Frank for this 65th birthday. 

Do universal remotes work on any TV?

There are universal remote setup that is compatible with numerous devices, and there are even mobile apps you can use as a remote control until you buy a new one. Most universal remotes setup works with televisions, cable boxes, Blue-Ray and DVD players, and other peripherals including streaming devices and gaming units. 

Now, do all universal remotes setups work on all brands of these devices? No, you’ll need to read the packaging of the remote control to see what brands of devices are compatible to which universal remote setup. 

Can you program any remote to any TV? 

With a modern UNIVERSAL remote, setup with any television is probably possible. Once a universal remote setup is for a certain television, it will not work on the previous television the remote control setup was create for, UNLESS the two televisions are the same brand. 

A remote control setup with a brand name like LG, Samsung, Sony, etc., cannot be used as a universal remote, setup is only for the television that was paired with that remote control, thus why those are not considered “universal”. Another point to make is that not all new television will work with an older remote control. Usually every 10 years or so, the manufacturers change things, making that impossible. Don’t throw away your old remote until you know that for sure though! 

How do you program a universal remote control code?

Not everyone will know ow to setup a universal remote and luckily, you don’t have to because the universal remote manufacturers include the instructions to do that! It can seem like a long, tedious process, but over the last few years, they have made it easier and easier. The basic steps for universal remote setup will be something similar to this: 

  • Locate your television or other device Brand Code from a list that will be included with the Universal Remote Control. 
  • Press and hold the button for the DEVICE you’re setting up. 
  • When the LED light for that button lights up and stays on, keep holding it down. 
  • While holding that button, press the POWER button and hold it down.

How do you program a universal remote without a TV?

No, you need a television to know what codes to use for the universal remote setup process. A universal remote setup is possible with the television turned off, although it is recommended to have it turned on. 

universal tv remote aimed at tv

How do you program a One for All universal remote?

Depending on the brand you purchase, every universal remote setup could vary, but these are basic steps that most universal remotes will have, which will be based on what brand of devices you need the universal remote setup done. The package will have the universal remote setup steps, including a list of the device brands the remote supports. After finding the step-by-step instructions for your universal remote setup, follow the steps as indicated by the manufacturer’s instructions. 

What happens if you lose the instructions for the universal remote setup? Today, we have the internet and there isn’t anything you can’t find instructions on. If you don’t know the brand name of the universal remote, do a generic search. 

A universal remote setup isn’t going to be as complicated as you may think. Each and every year, manufacturers of remotes, televisions, DVD players, and other devices make this process a little bit easier. If you can’t find the info you need on the internet, find the manufacturer’s phone number or website, and ask for assistance. Need help with your universal remote setup in Long Island, NY? Call (631) 517-0021 today.