PC Maintenance & Troubleshooting

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What to Try First to Fix a Microsoft Windows Problem

If you’re in the habit of upgrading or fixing PCs, sooner or later you’ll encounter a problem with Windows. When you do, use the tips in the following list as your first line of defense: [more…]

Important Tips for Upgrading and Fixing PCs

You want your PC to be all it can be, so you upgrade when you can and repair as necessary. When either fixing or upgrading, use the following tips to help keep you and your PC safe: [more…]

How to Remove a PC Case

If you want to upgrade or fix a PC, you need to remove the case to get to the inner workings. The steps in the following list tell you how, and the figure shows the key components. [more…]

How to Protect Your Computer and Data

If you do some regular computer maintenance and check a few settings, your computer will last longer and your data will be protected. The following tips can help you protect your computer and all the data [more…]

How to Fix Your Computer on the Cheap

If your computer stops working properly, before you spend any money at the shop, try these quick (and inexpensive) fixes. Fixing your computer doesn’t necessarily mean devoting a lot of time or money: [more…]

Troubleshoot with Boot and Windows Error Recovery Menus

As your PC boots up, you may encounter one of a multitude of start-up menus and options. Some are for troubleshooting purposes, and others may present options for starting the computer, selecting an operating [more…]

Troubleshoot a Blank Screen on PC Start Up

The loud sound of nothing when you turn on a PC means there is a power supply issue. To troubleshoot this symptom, check the following items in this order: [more…]

Troubleshoot POST Errors on PC Start Up

Should your PC experience Power-On Self Test Errors when it starts up, you can troubleshoot by entering the PC’s Setup program or by contacting the manufacturer if your PC is still under warranty. [more…]

Troubleshoot CMOS Errors on PC Start Up

To troubleshoot your PC when it is experiencing persistent start-up errors, take a look at the words that scroll across the screen on start up to see if the errors say anything about CMOS. If so, it may [more…]

Recover a BIOS Password on Your PC

If you are troubleshooting your PC and need to take action at the BIOS level, you will need the BIOS password. If you have forgotten the BIOS password, check with the motherboard manufacturer [more…]

Change the Boot Order on Your PC

When your PC is first starting up — also known as booting up — it looks for the operating system. Should you need to troubleshoot, it is helpful to know where it looks and in what order. Depending on the [more…]

Remove the Boot Loader when Troubleshooting Your PC

If you are troubleshooting a PC that will not start up properly, the problem might be a corrupt boot loader. It would keep it from starting from the hard drive, though you could still boot the computer [more…]

Use the F8 Menu to Troubleshoot Your PC

As your PC boots up, you may encounter one of a multitude of start-up menus and options. Some are for troubleshooting purposes, and others may present options for starting the computer, selecting an operating [more…]

Use the F5 Menu to Troubleshoot Your PC

As your PC boots up, you may encounter one of a multitude of start-up menus and options. Some are for troubleshooting purposes, and others may present options for starting the computer, selecting an operating [more…]

What Happens When You Shut Down a PC

Sometimes things go wrong when you shut down your PC. If you have to troubleshoot a shutdown issue, it is helpful to understand the shutdown process.

A long time ago, you actually turned a computer off. [more…]

Windows Shut Down Options

The Windows Shut Down Menu provides several options for stopping your computer. Understanding what each of them do will help you to choose the best option. [more…]

Where are Windows Shutdown Options?

Choosing a shutdown option involves finding where that option dwells in Windows and that depends on whether you are using Windows 7, Vista, or XP. The location varies, but generally speaking, you need [more…]

Set the Power Button Function in Windows

In order to avoid the problems and resulting troubleshooting associated with doing a hard PC shutdown, today’s computers have programmable power buttons. The computer comes with a factory setting to execute [more…]

Set the Windows Vista Software Power Button Function

Windows Vista features a software Power button on its Start menu. It can be programmed to sleep, hibernate, or shut down when clicked. Assigning one of those functions to that button is possible, following [more…]

Troubleshoot the “Other People Logged On” Error Message

If you’re one of the smart folks who bothered to set up multiple accounts on a single PC (one for everyone!), you may have seen a shutdown error message indicating that other people are still logged on [more…]

Troubleshoot the “End Program” Error Message

If you’ve shut down your PC several times, you probably encountered the “End Program” dialogue box. This box tells you that Windows is having some trouble ending a program or process in the course of shutting [more…]

Activate Hibernation on Windows PCs

Can’t find the Hibernation feature on your PC? Well, here’s how to troubleshoot that. The Hibernation feature must be activated in Windows before you can use it and, obviously, before it shows up on any [more…]

Activate Hybrid Sleep on Windows PCs

Somewhere between Sleep mode and hibernation is the hybrid sleep feature for your Windows 7 or Vista PC. (Hybrid sleep is not available in Windows XP). It’s like hibernation in that information stored [more…]

Recover from a PC Coma

Occasionally, a PC may go to sleep and not wake up. It gets stuck. Troubleshooting this issue is pretty simple. The problem isn’t as common as it once was, but the solution is the same. First, turn off [more…]

Understand PC Mass Storage

Because all your files — programs, documents, pictures, music, embarrassing videos — are kept on the mass storage system, maintaining and troubleshooting your PC’s storage devices are a high priority. [more…]

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