Oct. 30, 2006

New store front for Cokato

By Kristen Miller
Staff Writer

Craig Halonen, owner of PC Tweakers, has moved his computer repair business out of his basement in Dassel and onto Highway 12 in Cokato, next to Snap Fitness.

Previously, he was working only part-time with computer repairs and full-time with Charter Communications at his Dassel home.

He decided to quit his job at Charter and work full-time with the computer business.

Aside from repairs, Halonen is now getting further into sales of computers, parts, and software.

“I’m thrilled to be doing this full-time now – I’ve always dreamed of running my own business,” he said.

Most of his time is spent repairing and replacing internal parts, removing viruses, and increasing computer performance, he said.

“I’m fortunate to be doing what I love to do,” he said.

Having been in the business for two years, he has had much experience through course work and a mentor, according to Halonen.

Although his primary customers are in the Dassel-Cokato and Howard Lake areas, he does make house calls to service a greater including Buffalo, Winsted, and Lester Prairie.

What he is best known for is his quick turnaround time.

“I try to get computers back to them as soon as I can,” he said.

“People are happy when they leave,” he added.

Having built several computers, Halonen uses one specifically for data recovery.

For example, if a computer has crashed, he can hook it up to his computer and retrieve the data, burn it to a disc, restore the computer, and put the data back in, he said.

“When a computer crashes, 95 percent of the time, the data is still safe and can be recovered,” Halonen said.

PC Tweakers also offers the option of trading in old computers and buying new computers.

“I try to keep the prices lower than typical retail stores,” he said. The customer can tell him what they want and he will try to get it.

He also will try and keep software that is in high demand on supply, and always keeps RAM, hard drives, and DVD drives on hand, he said.

As an added feature to his new store, he has began a book exchange.

With a wife and three kids, Halonen has limited time to read, but when he does, he likes to read a good book. What he doesn’t like, is spending $10 per book.

So, for not only his benefit, but for others in the community, he has began a book exchange at his new store as well.

“Just bring in a book and take a book home,” he said.

PC Tweakers is open Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Saturday by appointment.

Stop in, check out his web site at www.pc-tweakers.net, or give him a call at (320) 286-5544 for any computer needs or questions.

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