Windows 7 Hardware & System Maintenance

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How to Connect to a WPA2 Protected Network in Windows 7

Every network — even home or small-business networks — should be protected by a WPA2 encryption. Once your wireless network is set up, secure, and ready to use, it’s time to connect your PC. To connect [more…]

Set Up a Secure Wireless Network in Windows 7

Creating networks in Windows 7 is easier than ever, but setting up a secure wireless network takes a little bit more thought. Every wireless network — even home or small-business networks — should have [more…]

How to Access USB Devices in Windows Virtual PC for Windows 7

One of the key upgrades in Windows Virtual PC for Windows 7 is the new ability to access USB devices directly from a virtual machine. The ability to access USB device in Windows Virtual PC means that you [more…]

How to Install a SATA Drive in a Windows 7 Desktop Computer

Installing a new SATA hard drive in a Windows 7 computer is a piece of cake — if you know the tricks. It takes a while, and you have to know where the Initialize Disk dialog box is hidden. But by and large [more…]

How to Update Applications Software

If you don’t know how to perform software updates, you won’t benefit from application improvements, bug fixes, and new security defenses (including virus and malware attacks). Follow these instructions [more…]

Calibrate Color on Your Monitor in Windows 7

The idea behind color management isn’t to match colors on a computer monitor with colors in the real world. Instead, strive to match colors in a way that satisfies your needs. For example, match the colors [more…]

Diagnose Problems with Peripherals in Windows 7

Windows 7 features many troubleshooting and diagnostic tools, all carefully hidden in the Control Panel. You can use those tools to quickly determine what’s wrong with your PC and, hopefully, fix it. Most [more…]

Troubleshoot Windows 7 Issues

Apparently Microsoft has realized the importance of PC troubleshooting and maintenance. Windows 7 features two locations to help you do both: the Action Center and the Troubleshooting window — a special [more…]

How to Activate Parental Controls in Windows 7

The key to using parental controls is to properly configure multiple accounts on your PC. Specifically, a parent’s account must be at the administrator level, or the parent must have access to an administrator-level [more…]

How to Change Parental Control Settings in Windows 7

Using Parental Controls in Windows 7, you can control the times that your children can use your computer, the kinds of games they can play, and the programs they can access. Each of these settings can [more…]

How to Run a Program with Elevated Permissions

Sometimes, you need to run a program as the administrator in Windows 7 or Windows Vista. Running a program as administrator means that the program has more access to the computer when it runs: It has [more…]

How to Recover the Previous Version of a File

Windows 7 and Windows Vista use System Restore technology, as well as any backups you’ve made of your computer stuff, to rescue older versions of a file. For example, if you change a file, or if it’s overwritten [more…]

How to Review File Associations in Windows

In Windows 7 and Windows Vista, you can easily review all known file associations on your PC. (Windows XP lacks this convenient feature.) From the window where you can review the file associations, you [more…]

How to Use the Windows 7 Program Compatibility Troubleshooter

One of the many troubleshooters available in Windows 7 is designed specifically to look for issues with older programs. As with any software troubleshooter, sometimes it’s brilliant and sometimes not so [more…]

How to Get Rid of Recently Opened File Lists

Even though the file may be gone, deleted, and dead with no possibility of recovery, its name still stubbornly appears in one of those recently opened files menus. The official name for the list of recent [more…]

How to Use the Find Command in the Registry Editor

Most PC troubleshooting tasks can (and should) be done using tools that come with Windows or the hardware that it runs on. Occasionally, you know that something exists in the Registry but you don’t know [more…]

How to Get Information about System Resources on a Windows PC

Understanding your system resources is a necessary part of troubleshooting. Resources include memory, mass storage, network access, processor power, and so on. When your program needs a hardware resource [more…]

How to Monitor System Resources on a Windows PC

Monitoring your system resources is a necessary part of troubleshooting. Resources include memory, mass storage, network access, processor power, and so on. When your program needs a hardware resource, [more…]

How to Review Events in Windows 7 and Vista

Windows keeps track of event details in log files. Just about anything that goes on in the computer — from a user logging in to programs crashing to routine tasks being scheduled — is noted in a log somewhere [more…]

How to Filter and Search Events in Windows 7 and Vista

Most computer event log entries are rather mundane. But the key to reviewing logs for troubleshooting is to look for pesky events. To help in your search, you need to employ a filter. [more…]

How to Enable Boot Logging in Windows

Two event log files that come in handy for troubleshooting your PC are the boot log files. These files are created when you specify boot logging as a start-up option. The files are named either [more…]

How to Use Windows DirectX to Troubleshoot Your PC

A diagnostic is a computer tool you can use to help troubleshoot something that happened in your PC. There are a number of diagnostic tools built into your computer. One of them, DirectX, was introduced [more…]

How to Use Windows Memory Diagnostic Tool

Windows 7 and Windows Vista come with a Memory Diagnostic tool, and it’s one of those memory-testing diagnostics, not just a diagnostic that says “You have this much memory.” Here’s how to use the Memory [more…]

Where to Find PC Hardware Diagnostic Tools

Windows doesn’t come with specific hardware diagnostic tools. Even so, when you add new hardware to your PC or the manufacturer installs it, diagnostic tools or programs may be available. [more…]

Understand How the Windows Registry Works

The Registry contains information used by Windows and your programs. The Registry helps the operating system manage the computer, it helps programs use the computer’s resources, and it provides a location [more…]

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