So you got your new laptop delivered and unwrapped. What next? Obviously we are not gonna talk about charging the battery and connecting the laptop to power outlet and switching on. You already have done this, I believe. Let’s get started:
1) Do a thorough check of hardware and system configuration:
Check DEAD PIXELS on the screen. Dead pixels are permanent dark dots on the screen. Do open blank documents with a single color and see if you find any black dot on it. If yes, you can claim a replacement. By the way, Dell and Samsung etc. do specify a minimum number (4 to 10 usually) of dead pixels above which they will replace the screen.
Match each single item on your specification/order with the hardware that you got. Check RAM size, processor speed, HDD capacity etc. Also verify the number of USB ports, card-reader (if any) and VGA ports etc.
Check what OS and software disks you got from the vendor. Are they sufficient to run your computer in case you wish to format the HDD now? (You will wish below)
2) Take a HDD snapshot:
Use a disk imaging software (Acronis True Image trial version will be OK) to take a snapshot of your HDD. This will create an exact replica of your HDD for backup. Keep the backup image away from the computer. If you later formatted the HDD and did something wrong, use this image and your computer will revert to its original condition as it was at the time of taking the backup; not losing a single bit.
FYI, a 250GB HDD with say 10GB of data will make an 8GB backup image. (just what I experimented)
3) Remove CRAPWARE:
If you bought the laptop with an OS already installed, it would also have loads of CRAP software with it. Most of them would be trial/evaluation versions of antivirus, word processing, backup software etc. It’s time to clean them all. Uninstall the softwares one by one. I would suggest you insert the OS installation disk and fully format the HDD. Then do a fresh install of the OS. This way you don’t need to choose which one to remove and what not to.
Oh yeah, when you format the HDD, delete all partitions and create new ones (atleast 4). Usually your new laptop would be having a single huge partition for everything and some hidden HDD space for its own recovery options. Remove them all.
4) Install Antivirus and Antispyware:
If you have purchased some antivirus, well n good. Else there are excellent FREEWAREs available. Download and install an antivirus (AVG Free, Avira etc) and an antispyware (SpyBot for example).
5) Entertain Yourself:
Go load the movies, music and games you wanted to enjoy. Any other software, if needed, can be installed later when needed.
And in the process if you did something wrong (very rare) and your system seemed unusable, just use the HDD image you stored somewhere earlier and revert your system back to the brand new factory condition. BTW laptop vendors do NOT want you to retain the factory installed condition in order to avail warranty. It’s your laptop. Do whatever you want to. They have been paid enough to provide service as and when necessary.
Let’s know if you have some other ideas to implement on a new laptop. Ciao.