Where to get a laptop computer tuned up?

section of laptop computer keyboardSandy emails:

I have a 2ish-year-old PC laptop that I'd like to get a midlife cleaning-out and checkup. I want someone who knows computers better than me to clean up the hard drive, security, and startup programs and remove bloatware. The computer also probably needs a physical cleanup to get dust and whatever out of the inside -- the fan seems to run constantly.
Does anyone have a good computer tech or store they'd recommend for this kind of service, for not too much money (I'm a student)?

We've encountered many computers like this -- still very much capable of being useful, they just need to be (literally and virtually) de-gunked.

So, got a suggestion for Sandy? Please share!


Hands down the place I recommend. - http://www.spauldingcomputers.com/. It appears to be a one-man shop, but he does a great job with great pricing.

Castle Computers, 24 Wade Road in Latham. 518-783-9405. Been around forever and are excellent.

I have a PC consulting business that offers many services: hardware repair, software installs/tuneups, antivirus, consultations, etc. I am located in Albany but service a wide area and can provide references if wanted.

If you are interested, please email DRConsult_at_aol.com (replacing the "_at_" with "@" written like this to avoid spam.

I've gotten good, reasonably priced service from AIT Computers in Troy. They've worked on a few desktops for me and once saved the files on a fried hard drive. I would assume they also work on laptops.

@Dave - I mean this with as little offense as possible : It's hard to take you seriously as someone in the tech industry when you're toting an "@aol.com" email address.

@Sandy - Even if you end up taking your computer into a shop somewhere and having this done, it's a great time to really familiarize yourself with some really REALLY basic computer maintenance stuff that can drastically improve the life of your computer and your subsequent enjoyment using it. Lots of great free programs and lots of great free advice if you're willing to spend the time on Google learning it. It will pay dividends down the road for sure!


I have been in business since 1995. I have used the same email address since that time. I have a systems engineering degree from RPI and have over 20 years experience working on PCs, servers, and various systems.

I'm sorry you think that everyone needs to change their email address or work on the innards of their PC to enjoy it. However, some people don't have time to maintain stuff.

Cars for example: I bring my car to a mechanic rather than do it myself. Do I know how to diagnose it and repair it? Yes, but I have a family to raise and other work to do, so I drop my car off and get it fixed.

Please try to be more understanding of other points of view.

I'm a big fan of Mike (who came highly recommended by the IT guy here at my office who just didn't have time to help my personal computer when I needed it done.) He took care of my then 3 year old laptop was awesome. Cleaned it out, updated some things etc. and was super reasonably priced. I would not hesitate to go back. http://www.computerxny.com/

Sean, not everyone in business can afford (or wants the expense of) a website/domain in order to have a cute or catchy email address. What email address would be "acceptable" or "legitimate" to your standards.... .hotmail, .yahoo, .gmail? nycap.rr.com? who cares if Dave's is aol?

To answer the question that was asked, I do not know where this person lives, however, if you are in the area of Guilderland, I would recommend Genetic Computers on Western Avenue (next to the Guilderland Library). Robert is very knowledgeable, I never have any doubts when I have to bring my computers in. I don't know if his prices are more or less expensive than at other places as I only give my business to him. He is in business for himself, so don't just show up... call first and make sure he is there and not out working onsite somewhere.

DAVE, you act like being in business for 20 years and having some fancy degree from RPI means more than having a GMAIL address.. WHO THE HELL DO YOU THINK YOU ARE...


Dave for Prez

I don't have a recommendation, but I appreciate that the poster is looking for a professional repair shop rather than simply dumping the task on a tech savvy family member or friend. I'm "the computer guy" for my family and too often people foist their problems upon me as if the work is no sweat off my back. From their perspective I'm just clicking the mouse and pressing a few keys, but it's not that simple.

One wouldn't except their car mechanic cousin to fix their car for free, yet too many people expect the same of those with knowledge about computers.

+1 for Castle Computers, they serviced my *Apple* laptop last summer, it was faster than stopping at the Genius Bar in CrossGates Mall.

@Sean: "Lots of great free programs and lots of great free advice if you're willing to spend the time on Google learning it". The state of free programs is daunting for non-geek nowadays, the very amount of crapware bundled by even "reputable" website, ugh. See recent, sad/funny Here’s What Happens When You Install the Top 10 Download.com Apps.

@dave: I think Sean meant no offense. At the same rate, 20 years experience working in IT, it shouldn't be any problem to juggle/forward/pop/imap multiple emails. As sad as it sounds, AOL is pretty much synonymous with MySpace -- you wouldn't want to advertise your band/brand there either. Domains are dirt cheap; and that's coming from a guy with a .me domain :) Then again, whatever works for you.

I understand your defense of the @aol address, but you should understand that perception is reality. People do perceive your @aol address as antiquated and it could affect your reputation as an IT consultant. Sean isn't the only one who perceives it that way. What is more important, your business, or clinging to a nostalgic email address from the 90's?

Liberteks on Western near Crossgates has been my go to IT Department for over a decade. Virus cleanup, keyboard replacement etc.

"aol.com" is the normcore of email domains.

I'll throw in Capital Mac Service, a relatively new Apple Macintosh service provider based out of Saratoga County, run by a former 13-year Apple Store Mac Genius. We perform service on older (vintage) Macintosh computers, training and upgrades. Capital Mac Service has pickup and delivery service available and on-site services for consumer or business locations. See our website located at http://www.capitalmacservice.com to make an appointment.

Another thread with a genuine appeal for aid has been hijacked for snippy arguments. Go take it to a bar guys & leave things free for someone who wants to help.

I have been doing a special on Craigslist
$ 25 per problem.
I have worked in a few Computer shops in the Capital District and have a 9-5 I.T Job now. I do repairs on the side for fun and some extra cash.
Laptop should not need much internal cleaning. Just a blast or two of canned air to clean up the fans if need.


Keep your aol address of course. Sounds like a great filter for bad customers. Wonder what they would say if you had a TI994A that actually worked. Blast that experience thing!

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