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Archive for the ‘System Tune-Up Help’ Category



Do You Need Those IE Updates?

Friday, March 7th, 2008

Q:
I no longer use Internet Explorer or Outlook Express, but of course, updates from Microsoft still come through for them each month. Do I really need those updates or can I disable them completely?

A:
As you all know, Microsoft sends out their Windows Updates at the beginning of each month, which help to keep our computers safe and secure. Often times, those updates include material for… Continue reading

Creating a Password Reset Disk

Friday, February 15th, 2008

Today we will be creating a password reset disk you can use whenever you forget your password. All you have to do is put the disk into your computer and when you see the Welcome screen, simply choose your new password. Sounds pretty helpful and timesaving, don’t you think? Then let’s get to it!

Note: This will only work if you have a floppy drive or a USB flash drive.… Continue reading

Resetting Your Vista Password

Friday, February 8th, 2008

Resetting Your Vista Password

I recently showed you how to reset your Windows XP password (you can read that tip here) and ever since, many of you have been asking how to do the same with your Windows Vista password. Well, have no fear, because that’s exactly what I’m going to show you right now!

1.) To begin, Vista has added an extra security layer for when a… Continue reading

Vista’s Device Manager

Friday, February 8th, 2008

Q:
I just recently started using Windows Vista and I’ve been having trouble with some of the drivers associated with my hardware. I know I should be able to use the Device Manager to fix those things, but I’m not quite sure where to start. Can you please help? Thank you so much!

A:
Excellent question! Open up the Device Manager. In Windows Vista, go… Continue reading

Vista Install Problems

Friday, February 1st, 2008

Q:
I just made the switch over to Windows Vista and ever since, it seems like I have trouble using it every time I install a new piece of software. What could be causing that to happen and how can I fix it? Please help!

A:
Oh, I’m so glad you asked and believe me, you’re not the only one having this kind of trouble! This is something… Continue reading

Resetting Your XP Password

Friday, February 1st, 2008

We are all pretty lucky when we forget our password on an online Web service, wouldn’t you agree? I mean, if you ever forget your password, almost all Web sites can e-mail it to you or they allow you to reset it by answering a security question. But what if you forget your password for Windows XP? It’s happened to the best of us and when it does, you may… Continue reading

Don’t Highlight That!

Friday, January 25th, 2008

Have you ever noticed that Windows XP always highlights the new programs you install on your computer in the Start menu? I mean, it’s helpful if you’re new to computers and you’re not sure where to go after installing a new program, but sometimes Windows will also highlight multiple aspects of the installed programs that aren’t really necessary, such as the “Read Me” files and so on. Plus… Continue reading

An IP Address Upgrade

Friday, January 18th, 2008

An IP Address Upgrade

It’s about time for an IP address upgrade, don’t you think?! Well, before I go any further, if you’re not sure, an IP address is a unique address that is assigned to a network device by the network. Every computer that connects to a network or the Internet is assigned an IP address. It basically allows that computer to communicate with the network or the Internet.… Continue reading

Vista Quick Launch Hotkeys

Friday, January 18th, 2008

Q:
Last week, you told us how to add items to the Quick Launch Toolbar in Windows Vista. Since then, I saw something online that mentioned hotkeys for the Quick Launch area. Do you know anything about that? If so, please explain. Thanks for all your help!

A:
You’re absolutely right! Last week (on Friday, January 11, 2008 to be exact), I gave you instructions on how to… Continue reading

Stop That Clicking Sound

Friday, January 11th, 2008

Stop That Clicking Sound

Have you ever noticed that when you click a link in Internet Explorer, there is a distinct “clicking” sound that plays through your speakers? As if the actual click of the mouse button wasn’t realistic enough! If you’ve never heard that sound, you should consider yourself lucky, because by default, it is always activated. At first, it’s unnoticeable, but as you become more experienced with surfing… Continue reading

Quick Launch in Vista

Friday, January 11th, 2008

Q:
Help! How can I add items to my Quick Launch Toolbar in Windows Vista? I can’t quite figure it out!

A:
Ah, yes, the Quick Launch Toolbar. It’s one of my favorite things ever! And up until just a few days ago, I really missed it when working on some of the Windows Vista computers here in the office. Like the person who asked today’s question, I… Continue reading

January 2008 Updates

Friday, January 11th, 2008

January 2008 Updates

As you all know, the time has come yet again for the monthly Windows updates from Microsoft. Most of you have probably already installed the updates on your computer, but just in case you’re not sure what kinds of changes were made, allow me to give you a brief explanation. I must say, this month’s updates were very minimal compared to some of the ones… Continue reading

Unplugged: Plug and Play

Friday, January 11th, 2008

Unplugged: Plug and Play

Plug and play: I’m sure most of you have heard that term before, right? But, for those of you who don’t know exactly what it means, plug and play is a feature that allows a user to add a device to their computer, without having to reconfigure anything or install any manual drivers. A couple examples of plug and play devices are flash drives and MP3… Continue reading

Unnecessary Features in Vista

Friday, January 11th, 2008

Unnecessary Features in Vista

If you’ve been using Windows Vista for awhile now, you have probably noticed that it contains, by default, many new features you may not even need. Those extra and unnecessary features can slow your computer down and take up more storage space than is needed. So, if you would like to uninstall or turn off some of those extra features, this is the tip for you!… Continue reading

User Switching in XP

Friday, January 4th, 2008

Have you ever needed to quickly switch users in Windows XP, but couldn’t quite figure out how to do it? If so, I can show you a quick way to do just that, along with a step-by-step guide on how to make the switch without losing any of the files you may be working on. Keep reading for all the details!

Windows XP offers you the option… Continue reading

Stop Working So Hard

Thursday, December 27th, 2007

If you’re a Vista user, every once in awhile, you may notice that your hard drive is working extra hard for what seems like no reason. When that happens, it’s likely that a background process has taken your hard drive hostage, forcing it to thrash loudly as it struggles to keep up with the high rate of reads and writes. Therefore, your computer responds slowly as the process overloads the… Continue reading

Speed Up Those Drives

Thursday, December 27th, 2007

Speed Up Those Drives

If you didn’t know, Windows Vista operates external hard drives that are connected via USB differently than internal drives. Write caching is disabled so that you can safely remove the drive at almost any time. This is a great feature for USB flash drives that are frequently inserted and removed from your computer. But, if you have a large hard drive in an external enclosure that… Continue reading

Troubleshooting Session: Video Cards

Friday, December 21st, 2007

Q:
I’ve been having some trouble with my monitor and I think my video card may be going bad. I’m not 100 percent sure though. Do you have any troubleshooting tips for video cards? Please help!

A:
No problem at all, but before you get started, keep in mind that all of the below techniques require you to work inside your computer. If you don’t… Continue reading

Vista Auto-Defrag

Friday, December 21st, 2007

By default, the disk defrag feature in Windows Vista is set up to defrag your system approximately every four times you restart your computer. It just starts on its own, no matter what you’re working on or what you’re doing on your computer at the time. As you can imagine, that slows your computer down quite a bit. So, if you’d like to speed your system back up by turning… Continue reading

Keeping Your Wireless Network Safe

Friday, December 21st, 2007

Q:
I just set up a wireless network in my home and while I love it, I’m still a little concerned about others being able to use my signal or even hack into my computer. I was told that hiding my SSID will take care of the problem, but I’m not sold on that idea. I’m not even sure what an SSID is or how to hide it. Can

Speed Up Your Vista Searches

Friday, December 21st, 2007

The Search Box in Windows Vista searches for files, Windows contacts, Windows Mail, history and favorites by default. That seems like an awful lot to go through, doesnt it?

Thank goodness, you can customize the search results from the Start menu search box to only return the results you really want. I’m the kind of guy that uses the Search Box to pull up applications, and rarely anything aside from… Continue reading

Removing Adware From Your PC

Friday, November 30th, 2007

We have all dealt with adware before, but that doesn’t mean we have to! Adware can clog up your computer and even cause irreparable damage if it’s not properly taken care of. Of course, with adware, prevention is better than a cure, but first, it’s important to remove whatever adware is already present on your system. Below are a few simple guidelines that should help you

All New Cleaner

Friday, November 30th, 2007

All New CCleaner

Have you heard the news?! I’ve seen it posted on various Web sites and even on WorldStart’s message board, so if you’re an avid CCleaner user, I’m sure you already know, but just in case you don’t, allow me to fill you in. On November 26, 2007 (just this past Monday), a new version of the ever so popular CCleaner program was released. Yep, CCleaner

Stop Those Permission Pop Ups

Friday, November 30th, 2007

I’m using Windows Vista and every time I go to make a change on my computer, a little box pops up asking me for my permission. It’s getting to be very annoying. I mean, if I didn’t want to make the change, I wouldn’t have tried to in the first place! Is there any way I can turn that feature off, but still stay safe? Please help me before I

A Better Vista Defrag

Friday, November 16th, 2007

A Better Vista Defrag

Microsoft’s Windows Vista looks fairly nice and it has some useful new features, but a change in the user interface just doesn’t cut it for me. How about you?! I’m talking about the Disk Defragmenter feature. It is one that I use on a regular basis (and one you should too!) I mean, it makes me feel good about the neatness of my hard disks and… Continue reading

Power Supply Gone Bad

Friday, November 16th, 2007

Q:
Last week, you wrote a tip about a computer’s power supply going bad, but you didn’t really discuss what we should do if that actually happens to us. Can you please go into that a little more? Thanks!

A:
I surely can! The response I got from that tip was simply amazing. The power supply article ran in last Friday’s newsletter and let me tell… Continue reading

Disk Cleanup in Vista

Thursday, November 15th, 2007

I’ve been using Windows Vista since it first came out and I think I’m close to using up all my disk space. Can you please tell me how I can clear up some of that space? I haven’t quite figured out how to do it in Vista yet. Thanks so much for your help!

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