PRINT THIS TO PAPER:
1) update the BIOS if newer exists (not critical)
2) update the DRIVERS only from the laptop support site (not critical either)
3) get START8 if you think it's useful (from Stardock for $5) and change the SETTINGS to fit your needs (like prevent the right CHARMS BAR from appearing in desktop mode; you'll see what I mean later...)
4) *If possible, get a USB hard drive or sufficiently large USB thumb drive to make a backup IMAGE of the Windows drive.http://winsupersite.com/windows-8/windows-81-tip-use-system-image-backup
**Keep the original Image, but make a 2nd one later and REPLACE it periodically. The purpose of all this is in case the laptop drive FAILS, or gets a virus or other corruption. He can then RESTORE from the backup. This is likely very important to a store owner.
(I use Acronis True Image. They have a free version as well which has no automatic mode. The free version works with WD drives, and Seagate has the same program with a different name.)
5) For the USB drive, I suggest a Western Digital version. Whichever is cheapest. Then, you can use Acronis True Image free (get from WD's site from any hard drive support link)
Not sure if you can find a cheaper WD USB drive but this one is $65 (and 1TB but even 500GB would be plenty):http://products.ncix.com/detail/western-digital-wd-1tb-elements-6c-89009-1020.htm
6) If the USB drive is left attached, and he buys Acronis True Image, he can set things up to AUTOMATICALLY backup. If so I suggest weekly.
7) If the USB drive is left attached, or a USB thumb drive is left attached, he can use the free version of SyncbackSE to automatically backup any folder or folders on a daily basis.
*An inexpensive thumb drive plus SyncbackSE is the cheapest way to backup data though it can't restore Windows if the drive fails which is a huge pain in the ass.http://www.2brightsparks.com/freeware/freeware-hub.html
His biggest concern is to learn how to properly do backups. He should assume that the main drive can die at any time and have a simple plan to restore it (i.e. buy new drive if dead, boot to Acronis/Windows image restore disc already created, then Restore the last backup).
I personally have a WEEKLY, automated backup using Acronis True Image (most are "incremental"), and use SyncbackSE to do an automated daily backup of my "Documents" folder.
(You can SEARCH an Acronis True Image backup to recover individual files. Just FYI so if the main drive died and he immediately needed something he could attach the USB drive to another PC to find the info.)