Unwanted software removal
Over time, your computers can accumulate unwanted and unnecessary software.
Types of unwanted software
Malware is the generic term for any kind of software that was written with malicious intent. It includes, but is not limited to, the following.
These can find their way on to your computers and servers in several different ways.
- Downloads from a malicious web site
- Attachments in a seemingly-innocent email
It is highly recommended that anti-virus software is installed on your computers and servers to protect them against malware. Although known as 'anti-virus software', most anti-virus software will give protection against the other types of malware too, not just viruses. It is also important that Windows Update is not disabled, as it delivers critical patches for security vulnerabilities in the operating system and other software.
Some free legitimate software comes bundled with unnecessary third-party software, such as web browsers, browser toolbars, and web search providers. This is not necessarily a bad thing as the vendor of the third-party software pays the vendor of the free software to include it, thus helping to keep the free software free.
The bundled software is presented to you when installing the free software, with a checkbox to allow you to choose whether you also want this software to be installed. This checkbox is usually checked by default and easy to miss, meaning the third-party software could be installed without your knowledge or consent.
Many new computers come with pre-installed third-party software – software that wouldn't normally be installed if you installed the operating system yourself.
This bundled software and pre-installed software is known as 'bloatware'.
Some of this bloatware might just be taking up space on your hard drive and be otherwise harmless. Some bloatware might be running in the background, probably unknown to you, doing nothing useful or harmful, just slowing down your computers. Some bloatware might have irritating behaviour, such as changing your default web browser, home page or search engine, showing pop-up adverts, or installing browser toolbars.
Other unwanted software
- Software and drivers for printers and other devices you no longer use
- Expired trial versions of software
- Software not appropriate to your business installed by members of your staff without your knowledge or consent
- Multiple versions of the same piece of software, where you only use the latest version and updating the software doesn't replace or remove any previous versions
- Multiple instances of anti-virus software, firewalls, or internet security software
- Legitimate software with programs and services that are run at startup and that serve no useful purpose but slow your computer down
It is a common misconception that the more software that is installed on a computer, the slower it will run. This is not entirely true.
If a piece of software is not running in the background, there is no way it can slow your computer down. Even if it is running in the background, its performance impact could be so minimal that you don't even notice it.
Nevertheless, you might want to remove software you no longer need anyway for other reasons, such as freeing up space on your hard drive.
Identification and removal
However it got on your computer, whatever it is doing, unwanted software should be removed from your computers to remove any risks it might pose and to ensure your computers are performing at their best for your business.
We will perform a thorough check of your computers identifying all the software installed and checking with you whether it is needed. We will then remove any software that shouldn't be on your computers, leaving your computers with just the software needed for your business requirements. We will also make recommendations for protection against malware and security vulnerabilities where necessary.