My Computer Died. What Now?!

Computer problems are frustrating. Becoming frustrated during the troubleshooting process will only lead to more problems. So the important thing to do first is take a deep breath, think happy thoughts, and plan out your course of action. Have tools ready, restore disks and drivers. This will save you time and patience.Before you begin, jot down notes about any recent activity you have taken: Have there been any software changes? Did you recently add any new hardware? Did you unplug the PC and move it across the room?If there have been no changes to the PC or its environment, then its time to ...

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No More Windows XP?

Not quite yet, at least not completely. Microsoft has laid to rest rumors that it might reconsider pulling Windows XP from retail shelves and from most PC makers next Monday. Large manufacturer's like Dell have already announced their intentions to charge a $50 penalty per computer than comes loaded with XP instead of Vista! Quite a price to pay when it actually cost less than Vista..Microsoft's Bill Veghte wrote to customers reiterating that June 30 would be the deadline when Microsoft halts shipments of boxed copies to retailers and stops licensing the operating system directly to OEMs. ...

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Does Your Computer Run Like a Snail?

As a working PC tech, this is one of the most common issues that I face day in and day out. Although it happens to varying degrees, everyone at some point realizes that their computer is not performing like it used to. To some the slowdown process is gradual, to the point where they hardly notice until someone else uses their computer and complains. For others, it happens very quickly so that there is a sudden and unmistakable loss of usability. Whichever is the case for you, here are some general guidelines to help you in diagnosing the cause (or causes) of the slowdown.The first thing I ...

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Maximizing Your Virtual Memory

Windows XP is an example of a typical operating system that has virtual memory. Windows has an intelligent virtual memory manager that uses a default setting to help Windows allocate hard drive space for virtual memory as needed. For most circumstances, this should meet your needs, but you may want to manually configure virtual memory, especially if you have more than one physical hard drive or speed-critical applications. To adjust your virtual memory: Click Start and open the Control Panel. Double-click on System. The system dialog window will open. Click on the Performance tab ...

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Windows XP Optimization Tweaks – Part 1

A customer asks: My new Dell computer is really slow. The other article on turning off programs (How to Disable Auto-Start Applications on Startup) helped a lot, but is there anything else I can do?My answer: YES! As a computer and network technician, I have visited many clients who wanted me to fix a certain issue that had nothing to do with the speed and 'pep' of their system. As we sat together waiting (for quite a while) for screens to load, programs to open, and things to download, I would always ask, "Would you like your system to work faster than it does?". The answer was always a ...

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Disabling Junk Programs at Start-Up

While on-site this morning, a customer asked: How can I keep this 'crap' from starting up every time I turn my computer on?!My reply was: Follow the given steps to disable the windows auto run applications. To use this feature, you will need to be logged into your computer with administrative rights.Click the Start button, click Run, and type msconfig in and press Enter.A small System Configuration Utility dialog box will appear with many options like General, System.ini Win.ini, Boot.ini, Services, Startup and Tools.Click on the Startup tab and uncheck the applications that you ...

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Tweaking Windows XP

A customer asks: My new Dell computer is really slow. The other article on turning off programs (How to Disable Auto-Start Applications on Startup) helped a lot, but is there anything else I can do?My answer: YES! As a computer and network technician, I have visited many clients who wanted me to fix a certain more | digg storySmartBox Web Marketing - Turnkey Local Online Advertising for Doctors & Professionals ...

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Is Your Data Safe From Your Computer Crashing?

<!-- | Permalink--> Every week I get the call."My screen says [insert error here] and nothing will come up. Has my hard drive crashed?!" My first response is "Did you backup your data?"Hard drive crashes don't just happen to your teenager who downloads a virus. They don't just happen to the guy you saw in Starbucks that spilled his coffee on his laptop. They don't just happen to certain people that do certain things, they happen to everyone.The word "Hard drive" sounds fancy and expensive, but they are really nothing more than a shiny disc with moving parts all around them. They ...

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Don't Trash Vista Just Yet!

A reader asks: I just read your article about "Downgrading Vista to XP" but my Vista computer it still slow. Is there anything else I can do to speed it up?My answer: Yes! There are 4 things every Vista user should know about how to fine tune their system. Vista comes with dozens of new features over XP and uses a TON of resources - memory and processing power - which is why it runs so much slower.All new computers we sell with Vista are already tweaked, so you don't have to worry about this! If you're one of those poor souls that bought another brand computer and are unhappy with Vista, ...

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Broad Match Hell

One of the most confusing, frustrating, and costly aspects of pay-per-click advertising is the variety of keyword match types offered by the big three search engines. What Google Adwords calls "broad match doesn't work exactly the same as MSN Adcenter's "broad match, and Yahoo doesn't have a broad match option at all. As a result of this confusion, and because all three of the major players use their broadest possible matching system by default, many advertisers are losing money without even knowing about it. Even if think you ...

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