Windows XP & Vista Maintenance & Troubleshooting

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How to Run Windows Update in Windows XP

Windows XP lets you set Windows Update to automatically download the updates you need to keep your computer secure. Running Windows Update ensures that your PC has the latest security patches and changes [more…]

How to Run Windows Update in Windows Vista

Windows Vista lets you set Windows Update to automatically download the updates you need to keep your computer secure. Running Windows Update ensures that your PC has the latest security patches and changes [more…]

How to Check Your Hard Drive for Errors in Windows Vista

Part of the preventative maintenance that computers need is looking for problems. Hard drives store data in different sectors or segments on the drive itself. Windows Vista's Error Checking program scans [more…]

How to Use the Hardware Troubleshooter in Windows Vista

Sometimes when you run into technical trouble, the solution isn't obvious. That's when it helps to use the Hardware Troubleshooter in Windows Vista. The Hardware Troubleshooter is a handy tool that will [more…]

How to Update a Driver in Windows Vista

Knowing how to update a driver in Windows Vista is crucial to keeping your system performing at its best. Hardware manufacturers update the drivers (the little programs that enable Windows Vista to control [more…]

How to Reformat a Drive in Windows Vista

Reformatting a drive in Windows Vista is usually a pretty simple process, which might lull you into the misconception that reformatting a drive in Windows Vista is no big deal. Wrong. Reformatting a drive [more…]

Exploring Windows Vista's Help and Support Options

Sometimes the easiest way to get the information you need is to do a quick search, but other times, the questions or search terms you need to use aren't readily apparent. In these situations, your best [more…]

How to Use Disk Management to Extend a Partition in Windows Vista

You can use Disk Management to extend a partition in Windows Vista. Extending a partition adds to your drive space by borrowing from an adjoining partition on your hard drive and makes your system utilize [more…]

How to Manually Defragment Your Hard Drive in Windows Vista

Windows Vista provides a good general Disk Defragmenter in its System Tools. But if you want to have more control over what is being defragmented and what information you are given about the process, you [more…]

How to Monitor Scheduled Defrags in Windows Vista

Viewing the results of the defrags on a Windows Vista computer takes a bit of effort, but it's worth the effort to check this occasionally to make sure the defrags are running as scheduled. After all, [more…]

How to Increase the Paging Volume in Windows Vista

You can increase the speed and efficiency of your computer by increasing the paging volume in Windows Vista. Your computer comes with a certain amount of RAM, which it uses to keep things running smoothly [more…]

How to Use ReadyBoost in Windows Vista to Speed Up Slower Computers

You can speed up the way your computer uses its RAM if you know how to use the drive accelerators that come with Windows Vista. Vista boasts three technologies that speed up your computer by judicious [more…]

How to Set Windows Vista to Reboot Overnight

Shutting a Windows Vista computer all the way down and then rebooting can cure many computer problems. When you reboot, Windows goes through several self-repair processes that really can make a difference [more…]

Monitoring CPU Usage with Windows Vista's Task Manager

If you want to speed up your computer, you need to know how to use the Task Manager to monitor computer status in Windows Vista. Previous versions of Windows hid performance data in dozens of obscure nooks [more…]

How to Start Windows Vista in Safe Mode

Windows Vista's Safe Mode is a great diagnostic tool. When Windows Vista starts up, it loads all of the drivers and many of your most common programs automatically, and usually this is great. But if you're [more…]

How to Add Task Manager to the Windows Vista System Tray

The Task Manager is a handy tool that lets you monitor the way applications are using your computer's resources and close "frozen" programs. You can place the Task Manager in the Windows Vista system tray [more…]

How to Use Windows Vista's Resource Monitor

Monitoring Vista's CPU utilization can give you an insight into why your computer behaves the way it does, but only if you understand what you see. Fortunately, you can use the Resource Monitor to interpret [more…]

How to Run the Task Manager at Startup in Windows Vista

Although you can use the Task Manager to monitor when things are going wrong with your system, this isn't very useful if the system is so locked up that you can't open it. One way to avoid this problem [more…]

How to Clean Up the Windows Vista Desktop

Windows XP had a program called the Desktop Cleanup Wizard that offered to clean the desktop for you, but it didn't work very well, so it was left out of Windows Vista. Never fear, you can still clean [more…]

How to Clean Up the Windows Vista Registry before Reinstalling a Program

When a program becomes unstable, you can try to repair it, but if that fails, the only option is to uninstall it and start over. It's important to clean up the Windows Vista Registry before reinstalling [more…]

How to Remove a Windows Patch in Windows Vista

So you got a bad patch from Microsoft? Hey, join the club. If you know you have a bad patch, you need to know how to remove the Windows Patch in Windows Vista. The first thing you need to know to remove [more…]

How to Install a New Codec in Windows Media Player

Many media codecs are included in Windows Vista, but as technology changes daily, it is important to know how to install new codecs for the Windows Media Player. Codecs are important in the Windows Media [more…]

How to Back Up Windows Vista Registry Files

Before you start spelunking through your Registry, you need to back it up. If you know how to back up the Windows Vista Registry, you can undo most damage that you might accidentally cause by modifying [more…]

How to Defragment a Hard Drive in Windows Vista

Computers require regular maintenance in the same way that cars do. You should defragment your hard drives regularly in Windows Vista to improve your computer's speed and efficiency. When files are deleted [more…]

How to Delete Cookies in Microsoft Internet Explorer

Part of cleaning up your computer and maintaining it efficiently is to delete cookies by using Internet Explorer in Windows Vista. There are pros and cons to allowing cookies to be saved on your computer [more…]

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