Some Equipment Is Built To Last 10 Or More Years – Your PC Isn’t

cat.ma.du is located in West Texas – farm and ranch country. For the most peart are a hearty bunch – spending many hours outdoors in extreme weather working with our hands and with heavy machinery.

When I first started driving in the city – and still to this day – I was complaining about how slowly everyone drove. A friend told me, “Don’t get mad at the guy driving slowly in front of you, he spent all day yesterday on a tractor driving 15 MPH in a circle.” I still get mad, but this perfectly illustrates how the lines between life in the country and life in the city often blur here in West Texas.

What does all of this have to do with computers? Did you just fall for clickbait and this is actually an attempt to sell you farm equipment? No. Here’s my point and my theory.

Farmers and ranchers spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on equipment but they expect that type of technology to last for decades. My theory is that they expect this from all of the equipment that they buy, even a new computer.

Unfortunately, PCs just don’t last that long anymore. While there is no definitive answer as to how long they will last or how often you should replace your computer, here is our collective experience that matches many in our industry.

Plan to replace your PC every 3 – 5 years (the life expectancy of a laptop is slightly less). Here are a few reasons why.

Hardware fails.

The hard drive (where the data is stored) fans, power supply and the motherboard all fail eventually. These are man made components that are prone to giving out. We often see lower end computers have hardware failure what we call “a year and a day.” We started using this term to describe failures that happen just outside of the manufacturer’s warranty and it happens quite often.

Software constantly evolves and software companies stop supporting older versions.

Unlike a John Deere tractor (which you can typically find someone who can work on even a very old one), computer software companies eventually stop supporting and updating old versions. The cost is just too great.

Modern PC users run more applications and programs on the same computer than ever before and as each software title updates, it often uses more resources.

I remember my first Windows PC, it had Windows 3.1 installed on it. I ran MS Money and AOL on it. That’s it! Now, a new PC comes with dozens of apps right out of the box. Then the typical user begins to install the different apps that they need. All of these apps take system resources and with each upgrade they use more and more. This often makes it necessary to buy new hardware to upgrade or simply buy a new PC over time.

Proactively replacing a PC before a catastrophic failure typically costs less money and definitely takes less time and causes less stress.

When a PC is completely dead it takes different tools and a different approach to retrieve the data, find software keys (or buy new software) and get the new PC up and running than it does to transfer everything from one operational computer to another.

A thrifty person can sometimes squeeze an extra year out of a computer but sometimes that gamble is a bust and it actually costs them more money than just purchasing a new one when the time comes.

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Fighting Viruses Get’s Tougher – Popular Cleanup App Targeted

Over 2 million users recently installed a version of CCleaner that had been hacked and included a trojan virus, according to the software developer.

This isn’t the first time that software that is designed to help and protect computers has contained malicious code It is, however, the first time that a popular tool (used many computer repair companies and technicians) has been successfully targeted. And while the software company has given the all clear, it was recently discovered that the newer (not compromised) version is also affected.

It get’s worse, in addition to the Trojan injected into the code, the infection contains a second payload that hasn’t been executed as of yet.

This form of infecting a victim with viruses and malware is being called a “supply chain” attack because it relies on the fact that the person downloading and installing the software trusts the source and the software company.

The truth is, if the end users or the computer techs that they are trusting to remove viruses don’t stay on the cutting edge of technology (and news of this nature), they will end up eventually doing more harm than good due to future attacks like this one.

As cat.man.du enters it’s 15th year helping home PC users and home businesses battle the constant threat from hackers and viruses, we are committed to constantly monitoring the tools and apps that we use to fight malware, spyware and viruses and never become complacent.

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It’s Back-To-School In Amarillo, Canyon & Dumas – 10% Off Labor On Computer Repair Services

It’s time to get your kids and yourself ready to head back to the classrooms and cat-man-du wants to help you out. It’s time to get those glitchy, slow, and infected computers running great for class. We know how expensive back-to-school is, so we are offering a limited time only discount for those heading back to school.

Our Amarillo, Canyon, and Dumas locations are offering 10% off labor ONLY to all college, high school, and even middle school students. College and high school students must provide school IDs and middle school students must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. We are offering this discount through the end of September.

Schools:

Colleges: Amarillo College & WT

High Schools: Amarillo High, Caprock High, Palo Duro High, Tascosa High, Canyon High, Dumas High and Randall High

Middle Schools: Travis, Mann, Houston, Fannin, de Zavala, Crockett, Bowie, Bonham, Austin, Canyon, Dumas and Westover Park

Also, don’t forget that we offer every piece of technology that you or your student could possibly need to make this next year the most productive year possible. Whether you need a screaming fast Lenovo laptop, powerful desktop with tons of storage, a tablet for doing research, or even a new monitor, cat-man-du can get you set up.

Feel free to stop into one of our locations and see exactly what we can do to help get your year started off right.

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cat-man-du Is Amarillo’s Most Awarded Computer Repair And Networking Company

cat-man-du makes it a point to do great computer repair work and networking at a fair price and with the best customer service. This has been the mission of the company since its conception and cat-man-du has stayed true to that.

Over the years cat-man-du has had the honor of working with thousands of businesses and local residents in the Amarillo, Canyon, and Dumas areas. With a true desire to solve computer and technology related problems, cat-man-du has become the leader in the Texas Panhandle when it comes to technology.

Being an authorized Lenovo re-seller allows cat-man-du to provide you with the latest technology from the world’s leader in PC and now mobile devices. We also keep a large stock of the Google Nexus tablets for those who are looking to own the #1 tablet on the market as well.

If you need virus removal, computer diagnostics, data migration, networking, firewalls, new computers or laptops, web design & development, cat-man-du can handle all of your needs and you don’t have to ship anything out of Amarillo, Canyon, or Dumas. All repair work is done right here in our local stores by certified and award winning technicians.

We are grateful to be a part of the local community and enjoy every day we get to help you meet your technology needs. With our focus being on customer service and doing the job right, it’s no shock that cat-man-du has received a multitude of awards as well as stacks of thank-you cards on a weekly basis. Just take a look at the photo below.

Here are just a few of the many awards we have received:

2010 Winner, 2009 & 2006 Finalist, Better Business Bureau of the Texas Panhandle’s Torch Awards for Marketplace Ethics

2009 Winner, Jim Henson Top Small Business of the Year (Amarillo Chamber of Commerce)

2012 Winner Top Small Busines (Amarillo Chamber of Commerce)

AND – while we’re bragging on ourselves, ahem, we get tons of “Thank You” notes and cards from our happy customers which may be the best award of all.

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cat.man.du GREEN – Earth Day 2013 [VIDEO]

I have a confession – I didn’t always care about the earth and the environment. In my 20’s I was of the opinion that I could do whatever I wanted to the environment and not make a significant impact. I am much older and wiser now and I know – just like a drop of water in a lake will create a ripple that will reach the other shore – everything I do has an impact.

When I first started cat-man-du nearly a decade ago we would only have around 10 computers come in for repair in a week. Of those, maybe one would be either abandoned or not worth repairing and we store it in a closet. After a few months would go by, we would take the computers and do what I learned to do with them from the computer company that I had work for in the past – we would do exactly what computer repair companies all over Texas do with eWaste every day – we tossed them in the dumpster. Even writing this now makes me cringe.

 

It wasn’t long before cat-man-du began to grow and we opened additional locations in Canyon, TX and Dumas, TX. Our 10 computers became 20, 30 and so on. It was (and still is) perfectly legal to dump all of the scrap PC’s and laptops into the dumpster. However, I had a change of heart and spirit. I knew if cat-man-du was to continue to grow we would be filling the local landfills with heavy metals like lead, cadmium, mercury and other toxic chemicals that pollute the soil and contaminate our groundwater. I made a decision that we would not only stop our computers that we built and sold – our eWaste – from going into the local landfills but we would also take in our competitors PCs, Macs and laptops.

 

Today all 3 cat-man-du locations have well over 100 PCs, servers, Macs, laptops and tablets come in for service every week. Many of these are too old to repair, not worth the cost to repair or they are abandoned by their owners. We are also left with hundreds of pounds of network cabling (and other cables/ wires), network switches, routers, mice, keyboards and more.

 

We are committed to operating off of a Zero Landfill policy with all of our eWaste. That means no piece or part of the technology that we sell and service (as well as many items that are brought in for us to dispose of) will go into our local landfills. We also recycle our cardboard and paper with KB Recycling of Amarillo. These are just a few ways that we make every day Earth Day at cat-man-du.

 

Please enjoy and share this video promoting Earth Day 2013. It was created for a school assembly promoting green initiatives – Happy Earth Day.

 

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