Computer Tips: Get Your Antivirus and Gaming PC to Play Nicely Together

I recently installed Call of Duty 4 on my Mac and was pretty annoyed at how choppy the game play was. Granted, I have a 2009 MacBook Pro, but I checked all the system requirements and the system should easily be able to handle the game and graphics. After a bit of fooling around, I realized that I had Kaspersky anti-virus running and it was slowing down the game!

My first instinct was to go into the anti-virus program and add the process name for the game into the exclusion or filter list. That’s what I’ve normally done for years and even though it’s a bit of a pain when you have to do it for a bunch of processes, it works. However, while browsing through the settings, I ran across an interesting item: gaming profile! Apparently, this mode would disable some features of

Internet Security while playing games in full-screen mode. It also allows you to play online over the Internet without interfering.

Computer Tips: Get Your Antivirus and Gaming PC to Play Nicely Together

In this article, I’ll explain the gaming mode option in various anti-virus suites and other ways you can allow for smoother gameplay for those suites that don’t have the option. I won’t be able to cover every single anti-virus program out there, so if you use something different than what is mentioned below, feel free to post a comment and tell us how you have it setup for best gaming performance.

Also note that some of the antivirus suites that support gaming mode only suppress alerts and messages during gameplay, they don’t actually turn off any of the virus scanning, etc. However, there are a couple that go further than just the notifications and actually disable background services like scanning and updating, etc. I’ll mention which type is supported for each suite that I mention below.

Kaspersky Gaming Profile

Since I use Kaspersky, I’ll explain that one first. When you go to the Settings, you’ll see an option called Gaming Profile.

Computer Tips: Get Your Antivirus and Gaming PC to Play Nicely Together

Basically, this will keep all alerts from the anti-virus, web scanning and firewall hidden until you finish playing your game, unless it’s a severe issue. On top of that, you have the option to not run updates and not run scheduled scans during gameplay. It’s not as advanced as some of the other antivirus suites, but it’s better than nothing. It’s recommended to check the extra options, otherwise you’re not really getting any performance benefit, you’re just preventing the notifications from appearing.

Norton Silent Mode

If you’re using Norton, they don’t have a game mode per say, but they do have Silent Mode, which does exactly the same thing:

Computer Tips: Get Your Antivirus and Gaming PC to Play Nicely Together

It also has full screen detection and a few other options related to recording TV on a Media Center PC, etc. This mode will suppress all alerts and suspend most background activities, leaving you the extra memory and CPU for playing your game.

Avast Silent/Gaming Mode

Computer Tips: Get Your Antivirus and Gaming PC to Play Nicely Together

There is nothing too special about the gaming mode in Avast. It’s basically just a way to hide all pop-ups, alerts and messages from the anti-virus software while you are playing games.

Bitdefender Game Mode

One of the better game modes is from BitDefender. There is an automatic game mode option and the software even has a list of games by default that it will enable game mode for automatically when you start playing it.

Computer Tips: Get Your Antivirus and Gaming PC to Play Nicely Together

What I like about BitDefender is that it does a couple of things when you enable it: firstly, all alerts and messages are disabled, then real-time protection is changed to the Permissive level, the BitDefender firewall is set to Allow Everything, which lets all new connections in both directions go through, updates are disabled and scheduled scans are also disabled.

Microsoft Security Essentials

With Security Essentials, there is no gaming mode or silent mode. Since MSE is so popular and installed on millions of computers, there is at least one option there that helps reduce the resources taken up by the process that runs in the background.

Computer Tips: Get Your Antivirus and Gaming PC to Play Nicely Together

When you go to the Settings screen, you will see an option called Limit CPU usage during scan to: and then a drop down that lets you choose a certain percentage. Go ahead and check this box and then set it to something really low while you are playing your game. You’ll have to remember to manually change it back to the original value when you are done.

BullGuard Game Mode Profiles

If you’re a BullGuard user, then you’ll be happy to see quite a comprehensive set of options for configuring gaming mode. They have something called profiles and by default, the software comes with a bunch of different profiles for many games:

Computer Tips: Get Your Antivirus and Gaming PC to Play Nicely Together

You can just check a profile and activate the profile. If the game is not listed, you can create a custom profile and configure all the anti-virus settings, including the firewall.

Computer Tips: Get Your Antivirus and Gaming PC to Play Nicely Together

ESET Gamer Mode

Computer Tips: Get Your Antivirus and Gaming PC to Play Nicely Together

Enabling Gamer Mode in ESET is also pretty straight-forward. It does the same thing as has been mentioned earlier: disables alerts and prevents updates/scans from occurring.

I’m sure you get the idea behind it now, so if your anti-virus or security suite is not listed, just Google it with the words gamer mode/silent mode and you should find instructions on how to enable it. 

It’s a nice feature can also be used for other types of situations like during a presentation where you don’t want to be embarrassed by random security alerts popping up all over the place. Enjoy!

"Computer Tips: Get Your Antivirus and Gaming PC to Play Nicely Together"

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Facebook,Google or Twitter Tips: Is It Better to Log Into Websites using Facebook,Google or Twitter Accounts

Over the years, you may have noticed that a lot of websites let you use your Facebook, Google or Twitter account to log into their websites. 

You don’t have to create a new username or password and a lot of the sites will automatically share your activity on Facebook if you give authorization.

This makes logging into those websites very convenient because you don’t have to create another set of usernames and passwords that you have to remember. For example, you can log into sites,,,,, and a million other sites using Facebook, Google or Twitter.

Facebook,Google or Twitter Tips: Is It Better to Log Into Websites   using Facebook,Google or Twitter Accounts

By far, the most popular option is Facebook. Facebook released a set of APIs in 2008 called Facebook Connect that changed how people log into third-party websites. Just about every major sites now lets you use Facebook Connect to log into their websites.

Facebook,Google or Twitter Tips: Is It Better to Log Into Websites   using Facebook,Google or Twitter Accounts

The idea has exploded in popularity and you might be logging into a lot of websites using Facebook without even thinking about it. However, like with everything in the world, there are advantages and disadvantages to this type of login.


The advantages of logging into multiple websites using the same credentials are fairly clear. Here’s what I find to be most useful:

1. No need to remember multiple sets of usernames and passwords for each site.

2. Credentials are less likely to be hacked since they are securely stored with Facebook, Google, or Twitter.

3. Sites are customized to use the Facebook API and therefore make it super easy to share your activity on those sites with your friends and family.

These are the three main advantages to using your current Facebook, Google or Twitter account to log into a third-party website. One of the main benefits I see is the fact that your credentials are more secure with the likes of Google and Facebook. There are a lot of websites that have great services, but don’t follow strict security procedures and can lose your information to hackers. I’ve gotten many emails over the years from companies that had their databases hacked and therefore my account was compromised.


You probably have heard the phrase “Don’t keep all your eggs in one basket” and you’ve probably read online at least once not to use the same password for every website you log into. There are reasons why you hear these statements over and over again.

The disadvantages to using Facebook Connect to login to every website you visit or comment on also are pretty clear:

1. Facebook, Google, Twitter become a single point of failure. If you lose access to any of those accounts, you lose access to all of the sites that rely on that account.

2. Similarly, if your account is hacked, the hacker could potentially see what apps you use on Facebook, etc and then log into those websites as you.

That’s basically the only disadvantage, but it’s a really big one.The fact that you are entrusting that much information to one particular site or service could cause privacy issues later on. Does Facebook, Google and Twitter get to keep all of that information about your activity forever? What happens if they sell it to someone else later on? It’s definitely risky if you don’t like one company to have access to so much information about you.


In the end, you want to diversify. I personally have some websites where I login using Facebook Connect, others using Twitter, others via Google and the rest using the regular website login. This way you’re not relying on one service or company for logging into a bunch of different sites.

Also, note that using Facebook to log into other sites will reduce your privacy because of how data can be posted back and forth between the site and Facebook. If you log into a website using Google or Twitter, there is less chance of that activity being posted to your Twitter feed or on Google+. For whatever reason, Facebook apps that you authorize tend to collect a lot more information and also post that info to your Facebook account.

Even though you probably haven’t heard of many horror stories yet, there are bound to be cases of hacking, theft, outages, lost access, etc as this type of login option becomes more popular. As with everything, try to stay diversified and you’ll be safer on the Internet. Do you use Facebook, Twitter or Google to log into websites? Let us know in the comments. Enjoy!

"Facebook,Google or Twitter Tips: Is It Better to Log Into Websites   using Facebook,Google or Twitter Accounts"

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Computer Tips: 4 Affordable 3D Printers

Its seems like everyday I run into some article, tweet or news story about 3D printers. Apparently the price for a good 3D printer has dropped significantly over the last 2 years, which means a regular consumer like you and me can actually afford one.

People have printed 3D iPhone cases, jewelry, figurines, guitars, and even bigger stuff like dresses and cars. It’s gotten quite crazy and since it’s such a new technology that is also cool, it’s becoming quite popular. If you’re interested in getting your own 3D printer and making your own toys for your kids or building something more elaborate, then here’s a quick list of good, but affordable 3D printers.

Of course, there are tens or even hundreds of 3D printers out there, but so far only a handful are being mass-produced and are within the price range of normal consumers. If you have any experience with a 3D printer, feel free to post a comment and let us know.

MakerBot Replicator, 2, and 2X

Computer Tips: 4 Affordable 3D Printers

The folks over at MakerBot know how to make 3D printers. They are the most popular and it’s pretty clear why. The prices for the Replicator, Replicator 2, and Replicator 2X are very reasonable when you’re talking about 3D printers at $1,750, $2,199 and $2,799 respectively. On top of that, the build quality is first-class and it’s also stylish.

Obviously, the main draw is the fact that it can print 3D objects beautifully. You can print out an entire chess set using this thing! That’s pretty amazing. You can use multiple colors at the same time to print multi-colored 3D objects. The new Replicators also have a host of other advancements that make it one of the best 3D printers currently on the market.

Cube & CubeX

Computer Tips: 4 Affordable 3D Printers

Next down the line is the Cube and CubeX 3D printers. These are also reasonably priced and give you close to the quality of MakerBot. MakerBot still stands out with it’s excellent design and high-quality build materials, but the Cube printers from Cubify are pretty top-notch.

Computer Tips: 4 Affordable 3D Printers

As you can see from the screenshot above, the price of the CubeX goes up quite a bit when you take into account the number of colors you can print at once. It shoots up to $4,000 for the top-of-the-line model. 

With MakerBot, you can spend a grand less and still print in multiple colors. With the Cube, you can print 3D objects up to 5.5 inches whereas on the CubeX, you can go all the way up to 10.8 inches!


Computer Tips: 4 Affordable 3D Printers

Solidoodle is a 3D printer that is a fraction of the cost of other 3D printers. Why? Well it definitely cuts some corners. However, it’s made my a former employee of MakerBot, so that’s a good thing. Priced at $800 for the 3rd generation model, Solidoodle is a great 3D printer for someone who can’t afford the $2K+ robots, but still wants to be able to print their own 3D objects.

 It’s got less features and definitely doesn’t look as fancy and polished as the Replicator, but it still gets the job done. You can print objects up to 8x8x8, which is pretty big considering the price.


Computer Tips: 4 Affordable 3D Printers

If you can’t afford $800 either, then you should check out the 3Doodler Pen on Kickstarter! It’s an amazing pen that lets you draw on a surface or in the air and create a 3D objects for only $75 (or $99 if you don’t back it on Kickstarter in time). As you draw, the pen extrudes heated plastic fed in from the back, which then cools and forms a strong 3D structure.

The great thing about this pen is that it’s so cheap compared to ALL other 3D printers and let’s you start playing around with 3D printing quickly. As long as you can trace, you can create your own 3D objects

Granted these are not going to be professional grade 3D objects by any means, but it’s still pretty cool. Check out some pics below:

Computer Tips: 4 Affordable 3D Printers

Computer Tips: 4 Affordable 3D Printers

Not bad for a $75 pen! Delivery of the pen isn’t anticipated until September 2013, so you’ll have to wait a while to get it. However with the low-cost and level of sophistication, it’s definitely worth waiting for. So there are four affordable 3D printers you can purchase to start your own business on Etsy selling unique trinkets. 

"Computer Tips: 4 Affordable 3D Printers"

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