Monthly Archives: March 2014

Automatic Repair in Windows 8

How To Repair Windows 8

how to use automatic repair in windows 8If you encounter startup problems with Microsoft’s Windows 8 operating system, do not despair. Windows 8 has a tool called Automatic Repair. This tool is designed to help in case the startup of the operating system poses a problem. When such a problem is detected, the Automatic Repair will display a diagnostics-based trouble-shooter which will automatically resuscitate the system. At times, the Automatic Repair may not be able to work on its own if the problem is very severe. It can then be launched from Windows 8 Recovery Drive. The Automatic Repair tool from the Recovery Drive will get your system back to a bootable state.

The following steps will help you to reboot your system:

  • After the system boots from the Recovery Drive, you need to follow the Troubleshoot. In the menu’s Advanced Options, you will see a screen as below in Figure A. In the list of tools on the advanced options screen, you will see Automatic Repair.
Figure A

Figure A

 

  • If you click on the Automatic Repair option, the following screen will appear i.e. Figure B.
Figure B

Figure B

 

  • Once Automatic Repair is launched, it will start diagnosing the problem related to startup and a new screen will appear – as in Figure C.
Figure C

Figure C

 

  • Automatic Repair will now scan the system and analyze the different configuration options, settings and system files to find the corrupt files or messed up configuration settings. Problems that need to be looked at are:

– Corrupt registry settings

– Missing/corrupt boot configuration settings

– Missing/corrupt/incompatible drivers

– Missing/corrupt system files

–  Corrupt disk metadata (master boot record, boot sector or partition table

– Problematic update installation

If any of the above problems are detected, they will be automatically fixed as shown in Figure D.

Figure D

Figure D

 

If the problem can be fixed, Automatic Repair will do it without any intervention. The system will then be restarted and will boot normally. In case Automatic Repair is not able to fix the startup problem, a Screen as in Figure E will appear.

Figure E

Figure E

 

From the above screen, you will observe that Automatic Repair has created a log file with additional information. This information will help you to return to the Advanced options menu, from where you will be able to select another recovery option.

  • Once you see the recovery options available, check out the details of the log file. The Notepad option in the Recovery Drive can be used to view the log file. You now need to record the file and path name of the log file. Once you have done this click on the Advanced Options button. When the Advanced Options menu appears, select the Command Prompt.
  • When the Command Prompt window comes up, type in the drive letter to change the drives. For example, if the log file is on Drive D – use the CD command to access the folder which contains the log file. Then type the name of Notepad’s executable file together with the log file name as a parameter.
  • A screen as shown in Figure F below will appear. A set of commands as shown in the log file needs to be accessed as given below:
Figure F

Figure F

d:

cd \Windows\System32\LogFiles\Srt

notepad.exe SrtTrail.txt

When Notepad appears you will be able to check out the contents of the SrtTrail.txt log file which will be similar to what is shown in Figure G. By scrolling to the bottom of the file, you should be able to find a test that has failed. This could prove a good lead for further investigation.

Figure G

Figure G

 

  • By booting the system from the USB flash drive, you can save the file from Notepad to the flash drive. Now remove the flash drive and take it to another PC so you can print it. This will give you a printed copy of the log file which you can now use as an aid for any further trouble shooting. Once you have printed the log file, return the flash drive to the problem computer. If you have booted the system from an optical disc, you will not be able to print the file. Instead you can scroll through it and make notes of any information which you feel is crucial.

When it comes to Automatic Repair Loops, there is one more option but it comes with a caveat. A number of cases was reported where a Windows 8 was stuck in an Automatic Repair loop and the process to get it untangled was unending and frustrating.  An option was tested where instead of running Automatic Repair after booting from a USB Recovery Drive, to go straight to a Command Prompt and do a series of BootRec  commands  to rescue the system. These BootRec commands followed by a ChkDsk command solved the problem. While this method might not work in all cases, it provides one more option before having to move to the next level of recovery tools.

Customize Your Windows 8.1 Start Screen – 6 Easy Tips

Personalize Your Start Screen

Personalize Your Start Screen

You have Windows 8 on your PC and upgraded Windows 8.1. Now you can customize Windows 8.1 start screen with a number of different features .  A lot of users have had difficulty finding their way through Windows 8.1 but here are a few tips which will teach you how to customize your Windows 8.1 desktop screen and you will start loving Windows 8.1, if you already don’t!

Tip 1# Boot Directly to Desktop Screen

With Windows 8.1, you can now boot directly to the Desktop rather than Start Screen.

Follow the following steps to set the settings for making your Desktop the default screen when you start your computer.

  • Right click on Desktop Toolbar.
  • Select Properties.
  • Select the Navigation Tab.
  • You will find an option under the Start Screen option which says “When I sign in or close all application on a screen, go to the Desktop instead of Start”. Click on it and you are ready to go.
Boot Directly to Desktop

Boot Directly to Desktop

Tip 2# Customize Your Tiles

You can easily customize your tiles on the Start Screen. You can change the tile size, add or delete tiles and group similar tiles under a single group.

In order to add an app to the Start Screen, simply click on the app and select Pin to Start from the app bar.

To delete an app, click on the app on the Start Screen and select Unpin from Start.

To group similar apps under a single name, drag the apps you want to group and drop them one by one to one place on the Start Screen. Then, right click on the icon on the Start Screen and click on ‘Customize’ option. Above each of the group, you will see a text field where you can put in names for the groups.

Organize Tiles Easily

Organize Tiles Easily

 Tip 3# Pin to Start With One Click

You can get quicker and easy access to folders, files or websites which you occasionally use by pinning them to the Start Screen. If you have some favorite people on your social media accounts, you can pin them too to get updates without having to open your account.

To pin files and folders on Windows 8.1, go to File Explorer, right click on the files and folders and select ’Pin to Stat’, one by one.

To pin your favorite websites, open the websites on the Internet Explorer from the Start Screen. Click on the ‘star’ icon and then click on the ‘Pin’ icon.

To pin your favorite people to see updates from them on your Start screen, click on the People app and connect your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or other social media websites. Then click on the person you want to add to your Start Screen and click on ‘Pin’.

Pin to Start

Pin to Start

Tip 4# Add Slideshow to Your Lock Screen

You can create a slideshow of your favorite pictures and add it to your lock screen.

To do it, follow these easy steps –

  • Go to the Settings Charm menu
  • Click on Change PC Settings
  • Select PC and Devices
  • Click on Lock Screen
  • Enable the On option.
Add Slideshow to the Start Screen

Add Slideshow to the Start Screen

Tip 5#Advanced Search Option

In Windows 8.1, you can easily search for anything by just typing on the search bar at the Start Screen. Just start typing what you are looking for and it will auto completes it. Most of the time, the first search will be what you are looking for. Just hit enter and you open the app or file. Apart from your files and folders, you can even get results from the internet for what you are looking for by clicking on the magnifying glass icon just beside the search box.

Here are a few shortcuts which will make it easy for you to search for something on your Windows 8.1 –

Search Shortcuts for Windows 8.1

Open the Search charm to search everywhere Windows Key + S
Open the Search charm on the upper right side to search Settings Windows Key + W
Open the Search Charm to search Files Windows Key + F
Search within an open app Windows Key + Q

 

Search Search Search

Search Search Search

Tip 6# See and Organize All Programs and Apps at Once

If you want to see all the programs that are on your computer in just one click, you will find it easy to do so in Windows 8.1. On the Start screen, you will see a circle with a down arrow in it. Just click on it and you will be able to see each and every single program and app that are on your computer. What’s even better? You can group the programs together by category, name, date installed or most used by clicking on the down arrow next to the App title.

Organize your Apps and Programs

Organize your Apps and Programs

These are just a few easy tips on how to customize your Windows 8.1 start screen. If you have been reluctant about installing the new Windows update, do not delay any further. You will surely love it!

How to automatically lock your computer

How To Automatically Lock Your Computer

Auto-Lock Your PC & Safely Step Away

Don’t know how to lock your computer automatically while you’re away with Windows 7 – you’re in the right place. Follow these 5 easy step-by-step directions to have your computer lock up when not in use to protect all of your information, files and data that perhaps you do not want other people to see. You may not be too familiar with all of the things that can be done on Windows 7 and that’s alright. This is why we are here to walk you through some of the more common things that people would like to do while on their computer. Like our other Windows tips, you should keep this tip in mind. This is not the same as adding another user onto your computer – which would allow them to use a different desk top that does not have your information provided or locking your information from those using your desktop – this would be found in another blog post.

With these Windows tips, you’re able to have your computer lock automatically when the screen saver is turned on. This requires you (or whoever else) to enter a password in order to be let back into the computer. Make sure to choose a strong password as your computer password. In order for this to work on your computer — you also need to ensure that a password is set up already and requires you to log-in when you shut the computer down and boot it back up. If there is no password that is currently set, the computer is just going to let the person in when they click on the icon.

Set Up Automatic Password Protection

Step 1:

Right click on the desktop and click ‘Personalize’ in order to open the personalization settings. This is an area where you’re also able to change your desktop picture.

Step 2:

Click on the ‘Screen Saver’ option that is under themes in order to change the settings for the screen saver.

Step 3:

You do not need a mouse to do this either. You’re able to hit the ‘Win’ key and then type ‘Screen Saver’ into the search box and then click ‘Change Screen Saver’.

Step 4:

This should open the settings for the screen saver. You then choose your screen saver while you’re in this area, check on the box that allows you to display the login screen when the screen saver is exited. You should then enter the number of minutes the computer should wait before the screen saver starts. Make sure to hit ‘OK’ to save these settings.

Step 5:

After this amount of time passes without you touching the keyboard or mouse, the screen saver will come on without a problem. When the mouse is moved, or a key is pressed – you’re able to access the log-in screen instead of being brought directly to the desktop. You should then enter your password as you normally would to enter into the desktop area.

Don’t want a screen saver?

Still want to make sure your computer locks while you’re away? No problem, follow these steps to do just that…

When you go through these and you end up on step 4, just click the ‘None‘ box for a screen saver. You still check the box like in the instructions, but the computer will just switch to your login screen when it goes into sleep mode instead of onto the screen saver. The screen will be blank since you did not choose to use a screen saver.

Make sure that other people do not know your password when it comes to locking your computer. If they do, then there is no point in going through this whole process to keep people out. It would also be a waste of time so choose a strong password that no one knows or can guess. This is important since you’re going through these steps to save guard your information and not hand it out freely.

Computer won't turn on

My Computer Won’t Turn On – What To Do

When your computer won’t turn on, there are a few things that can be done to check out whether or not the hardware or configuration is at fault for your . Considering these faults prior to getting help might be in your best interest since it might be an easy fix – or you could need a professional for PC repair since there are a wide range of possible problems causing your computer to stay off and preventing boot up.

Un-Plugged Wires

Make sure your computer is truly turned off and then check around the back of the monitor and tower to see if all the wires are securely connected. If you find that one of the cords is unplugged, make sure to plug it in since this might be the cause of the power issue.

Turn it On

Try to turn the computer on.

If it doesn’t turn back on or if the screen stops on a black background with white writing and does not say Windows on it – it is most likely a hardware issue that is to blame. Shut the computer down and move on with the directions.

If it does turn back on then follow the on screen, booting up directions to ensure that you’re able to reach all of your information on your computer safely.

Pay Attention

Pay attention to any of the signs and sounds that you see and hear when trying to turn your computer on. Here are some common things that might happen when pressing the button in:

  • Strange clicking or beeping sounds coming from the computer
  • Flashing lights
  • Screen lights up then shuts right off afterwards
  • Is stuck on the Windows screen
  • Gives you an error message
  • Is nothing happening at all — no sound, no lights, no screen, nothing

If you notice any of these signs, make sure to correctly record them. You want to ensure that you write down any error messages, sounds, sights or anything else that is showing up on the screen or within the computer before bringing it in for PC repair to ensure that they are able to fix the problem without pulling apart the entire thing.

Quick Fix

Try fixing the problem by unplugging and plugging back in the power supply cord to the desk top or removing the battery out of the back of the computer if it is a laptop. Once you do this, leave it out of the laptop or unplugged from the wall for a few minutes and then plugging it back in. Try to turn the computer on. If this does not fix the problem then move on, if it does then you should have full control over your computer now.

If you find that none of these solutions is able to help, you will need to speak with a professional regarding the PC repair that needs to be done. They are able to go through what you recorded and then determine some of the reasons that you’re having this problem for.

Having any type of computer problem means that it could be one of many different things. This can become frustrating for anyone that is unfamiliar with the many problems that computers can go through. By speaking with a professional that is able to accurately diagnose and fix the problem — you should feel better and have your computer back in no time at all with the right PC repair company and professional.



        
How to Set up Wireless Share on Windows 7

How to Set up Wireless Share on Windows 7

Setting up wireless share for Windows 7 might seem like a daunting task for anyone that is not familiar with computers or Windows 7, however it can be done with some simple steps. You’re able to do a lot when it comes to having a wireless network that allows you to browse the Internet from wherever you are in the home – but also send items from one computer to the next. Hook up printers and other items without the use of cords. Having wireless share provides the flexibility that you’re after with any home Internet devices.

Go through the steps in order to set up your wireless share and start enjoying all of the benefits that come with it.

Secure the Network

It is always important to secure the network, especially if you’re going to be sharing between computers. You do not want any of your personal, financial or other sensitive information in the wrong hands. A lot of times the provider will set this up for you, but if they do not then make sure to follow these rules:

  • Change the user name and password on your router if it is the default one. This can be used by anyone in the area so you want both to be specific to you and something you know. Follow the instructions that came with the device to change this information.
  • Set up your own security key on your network to help protect against unauthorized access. Here are the instructions for doing this:
  1. Open your Network and Sharing Center located in the Start menu. Click on the Control Panel. Type in Network in the search box and then click on the Network and Sharing Center.
  2. Click on the Set Up a New Connection or Network
  3. Click Set Up a New Network and click Next
  4. This wizard will then take over and make sure to help you change your security key. Use WPA2 for protected access on your wireless router. This offers the best security against intruders that want to be on your connection.
  • Create your security key and make sure to write it down somewhere so you do not forget it!
  • Make sure to use a firewall in order to continue the protection on your computer from those that wish to harm the contents or use the contents and information against you. It can help block the unauthorized downloads from Trojans, bugs and other malicious software.

Add Computers to the Network

Follow the steps to connect your computer to the network:

  • Open the Connect to a Network by clicking on your network icon which looks like a plug and computer or signal bars.
  • There will be a list of networks being shown, click on which one is yours and click Connect.
  • Enter your security key that was just made.

Share Those Files and Use the Printer

Wirelessly! You’re able to share pictures from computer to computer or access the Internet and printer from any room in the home without having to be plugged in. You will need a homegroup set up in order to share. You’re also able to share through the public folder located in your Documents section. Public sharing has to be turned on however, follow these steps to do so:

  1. Go to the Start menu and click on your Control Panel. Type Network into the search, go to Network and Sharing Center and then click on Change Advanced Sharing Settings.
  2. Click the arrow to expand the network profile.
  3. Underneath Public folder sharing, click On or Off for the options.
  4. Save the changes.

Make sure to repeat these steps to ensure that every computer is able to share. If you want to share from one computer to the next after they all have sharing turned on, just drag and drop the file into the public folder that is automatically shared with the others located on the network.

Setting up a Home Group

A homegroup can allow the user to set up a sharing system for other computers on the network but they have to have permission in order to view the shared content in the folders. This can be great for giving certain computers privileges but not others. Normally, when a computer is set up there is already a homegroup added to it. If you want to go in to check or set one up, here are the steps to do so within Windows 7.

  1. Go to the Start menu, Control Panel and then search for Homegroup.
  2. Click on Create a Homegroup and follow the instructions that they give you on that screen.
  3. Create a password for your homegroup in order to ensure that not everyone is able to see the documents and files that you placed in the shared folders.

Note* If there is already a homegroup made, you will be asked to join it instead of create one. You can walk through the steps provided on this screen to do so.

Joining a Homegroup

If there is already a homegroup made and you’d like to join it, you have to first obtain the password from the admin and then follow these steps to share and obtain shared files, information, documents and so forth.

  1. Go to the Start menu, Control Panel and then search for homegroup in the search box.
  2. Click on Homegroup when it pops up.
  3. Click on Join Now and follow the instructions on the screen. This is where you will also need to enter the password.

Access the Files in the Homegroup

You’ll have to access the files that are being shared in the homegroup once you join. This can be done easily by following these simple steps:

  1. Go to your Start menu and click on your user name
  2. In the left pane, right under Homegroup, click on the user’s name of the files you want to access.
  3. When it gives the file list, double click the file and the folder that you’d like.