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Common Computer Problems & Fixes

by Melody, WA

Manually stopping Pop Ups

This for Windows XP. Go to START, SETTINGS and click CONTROL PANEL. Double click on ADMINISTRATIVE TOOLS, SERVICES SHORTCUTS, scroll down to MESSENGER and click it. It should have 2 blues links, a little to the left of the list, one START and one END SERVICES. Click STOP SERVICES and that should do it. You can also double click on the MESSENGER and a box will pop up and give you some options on a pull down menu to disable, automatic or manual. You want disable.  

Windows ME.        Do a search for SERVICES. (Click START and go down to SEARCH and across to FOR FILES OR FOLDERS.) Double click on that in the results and it should take you to that file and open up the list of services (it has two gears meshed together showing in yellow) and scroll down to find MESSENGER. Double click it. Stop or start the service, on the left-hand side top. Click on STOP or you can disable it when you double click messenger and the gray box comes up. It's in a pulldown box on first page.  

Printing Online Bricks Coupons

Try holding down CTRL on the keyboard to install or print the coupons.

For the install of the printer program, keep holding it down for every page. When you go to the site to print coupons, hold it down the whole time.

If you're using FireFox, try Internet Explorer. Another browser that some have had success with is Safari. It's for the Apple computer but works with Windows.

Enabling Java to do PINECONE surveys

Internet Explorer: Click on TOOLS, go down to INTERNET OPTIONS and click it. Click ADVANCED TAB. Go down and look for JAVA. Some have different settings. I have JAVA SUN. Make sure this bubble has a green dot in it. Next look for MICROSOFT VM (Virtual Memory). I have 3. JAVA CONSOLE ENABLED, (requires restart), mine is not checked, JAVA LOGGING ENABLED and JIT compiler for VM enabled (requires restart).

If that doesn't work after a reboot, try this. Click on TOOLS, go down to INTERNET OPTIONS and click it. Click SECURITY tab this time. Click INTERNET with the planet Earth if it's not already on that setting. Click CUSTOM LEVEL. Another box will open up. Almost at the bottom is SCRIPTING OF JAVA APPLETS. Make sure it's got the green dot on ENABLED.

Up towards the top, look for MICROSOFT VM and under that is JAVA PERMISSIONS. Mine is set on HIGH SAFETY, make sure that's what is filled in, you can always go back and try MEDIUM if JAVA still gives you grief. Click OK, puts you back to the first box, click APPLY if it's in black letters, click OK and reboot. You should now be able to do Pinecone surveys.

To get into Pinecone you still might have to hold down CTRL to get the pop up to open up and then should be alright after that.
Making a TINY URL & Hyperlinking to site

Go to Copy and paste the long URL into the box, click MAKE tinyURL, copy the new one it shows you, not the preview one and paste it into RC. Place 2 spaces before the URL and 2 spaces after the URL, do NOT hit ENTER but keep typing and then the URL will come up a blue link. If you hit ENTER, then the HTML code for the break < br > will follow the link and attach the next word to the link.

If you have a long URL or one that starts with https://, it's a secure link and won't hyperlink on this site, go to the Tiny URL site and put the URL into the box and hit the MAKE TinyURL button. Then copy and paste it here.

If you get a long URL more than around 70 characters, it makes the lines go long and we have to scroll sideways to read the Chat.

Larger or Smaller Font

Click and hold down the CTRL on your keyboard and you roll the scroll button on the mouse. Pull it towards you and the letters get bigger. Push it away from you and the letters get smaller.

AVG Free anti- virus program  

Zone Alarm Free Firewall    

Trend House calls Free virus scanner    

Disk Cleanup

Click START up or down to PROGRAMS over to ACCESSORIES and find SYSTEM TOOLS.  Over to DISK CLEANUP and click it.  It will come up and scan, then a box of what can be cleaned.  DO NOT compress old files.  I've had a hard time with doing that.  Check off what files you want emptied.  

Cleaning Cookies

For Cookies on Internet Explorer, click TOOLS and go down to INTERNET OPTIONS and click it.  Under TEMPORARY INTERNET FILES is a button to delete cookies and also you can clear your Internet history.
Making , , , character signs

This isn't by keyboard but it's accessing the Character map. Click on the START button and go up or down to PROGRAMS, Go over to ACCESSORIES, over to SYSTEM TOOLS, and over one more time to CHARACTER MAP and click it. When the box opens up click on the , or whatever the character is you want, click select, copy. Go to your text, right click the mouse and find the PASTE feature and there you have it. It will go where your cursor line is showing and you can click the mouse and place it anywhere you want. There are all sorts of signs you can do. The default is ARIAL text but click the small arrow opposite the ARIAL word and go to WINGDINGS. There's lots of fun things to copy and paste into letters and WORD.

Newer Versions of stored pages

Makes pages like RC load faster and this will give you the newest page available.  If you use Internet explorer, go to TOOLS, go down to INTERNET OPTIONS, Click it and on the GENERAL tab, go to the middle where it says TEMPORARY INTERNET FILES. Right under that is SETTINGS, click it and it opens up. CHECK FOR NEWER VERSIONS OF STORED PAGE. Click the bubble that says AUTOMATICALLY. Click OK to close that box and OK to close the next one and that should do it. That should make the current page load.

Setting IE back to original settings

Use this if things are messed up.  Sets IE back to it's default settings like the first day you used it.

On Internet Explorer, click TOOLS, down to INTERNET OPTIONS and click it.  Go to the advanced tab and click it.  Go down and find RESTORE DEFAULTS, click APPLY and OK and see if that helps.
Correctly uninstalling a program

Click START/SETTINGS over to CONTROL PANEL and click it.  When it opens double click ADD or REMOVE programs.  Another box will open up and look for  (whatever name of the program)  you have and click REMOVE over to the right and that should uninstall it.
Saving and printing a Picture

Right click your mouse when your cursor is over the picture.  A box will come up.  Look for words like COPY, COPY TO CLIPBOARD or something like that and click the word.  Open up a WORDPAD document, usually found in your START menu.  Click START, go up or down to PROGRAMS, over to ACCESSORIES and then find WORDPAD.  After you open it, right click on the blank page.  In the box that opens up, look for PASTE and click it.  That will put the picture there, then do your PRINT and you will only print the picture.  When you close the WORDPAD document if you don't want the picture anymore, tell it NO when it asks if you want to save the document.  If you want to save it, create a name and click OK.
Set password for computer start up

You can set up an administrator account that starts the opening page and has to have a password to log into the computer.  It has to be typed in each time you turn the computer on.  Click START, up or down to SETTINGS and over to CONTROL PANEL.  Click it.  The control panel will open.  Look for USER ACCOUNTS.  Look for COMPUTER ADMINISTRATOR and click it.  CREATE PASSWORD is next.  When you create it, write it down and hide it.  Do not make it something easy to crack.  Use a country name mixed with numbers  FR5AN84C98E2 (France) or kids will figure it out.  Do not use a birthdate or anything they are familiar with.  A childhood friend, a pets name they didn't know.  

You can remove a password as well.  
Changing pic format

This does not resize it but will put it to JPEG format.  Click START, up or down to PROGRAMS, over to ACCESSORIES, then over to PAINT.  Click it.  A box will open up.  Click FILE, find OPEN and click it.  Look for the picture you want to change and click it.  It will now be in the PAINT program.  Now click FILE again, go down to SAVE AS and click it.  Another box opens up. At the bottom is FILE NAME and SAVE AS TYPE.  Click the arrow on the SAVE AS TYPE box and a few things will drop down and you will choose JPEG formats.  Click SAVE and a message will come up and ask you if you want to replace the picture and you can click yes.  I know this sounds like a lot but just do each step one a time and it's not so confusing.  

Go to shutdown as normal.  Push SHIFT on the keyboard and HIBERNATE will come up.  It's the same button as STANDBY.  Click it and it will shutdown.  If you don't get HIBERNATE, when you use the shift key, do this to activate the program.  Go anywhere on your desktop screen.  Right click your mouse and a box will open up.  Click on PROPERTIES.  When that box opens up click on the tab, SCREEN SAVER.  Next click on POWER.  The box will open up to POWER SCHEMES.  If you want to while you are there, you can change settings for what you want the computer to do as far as shutting down when idle.  Click on the HIBERNATE tab.  Look to see if there is a check in the box.  If there isn't, check the box, click apply, OK and that box will close.  If you have made no other changes in the 1st box, hit cancel and you will be back to the desktop.  Now you can hit SHIFT when shutting down and the computer will HIBERNATE.
Setting IE for Auto Complete

On Internet Explorer, click TOOLS, go down to INTERNET OPTIONS.  Click it.  Click the CONTENT tab.  Under PERSONAL INFO you will see AUTO COMPLETE.  Click it and another box opens up.  USE AUTO COMPLETE FOR and check all the boxes.  Click OK, that box closes, Click APPLY if it is darkened up or else click OK and that should turn on the Auto Complete.
Home page reset

If your homepage has just been reset, changes going on that you didn't do, that's what spyware does best.  Go to the page you want as a home page on INTERNET EXPLORER, then go to TOOLS, go down to INTERNET OPTIONS,  Click it and on the GENERAL tab on the top is Home Page.  Click USE CURRENT, click APPLY and then OK and that will reset it.  
Spyware problems

Lavasoft Adaware installed?  is the free site and run it every couple of days.  

To activate a scan for Lavasoft Ad-Aware, click on START, over to PROGRAMS and find LAVASOFT on your menu, go over and click AD-AWARE

2007 that will launch the spyware remover program without ad-watch.

Companies get smart on tricking you with free products by trying it and get you to buy it.

To put a shortcut on your desktop go to the Ad-Aware 2007 on your menu and while you have your cursor over it, right click the mouse and find SEND TO, go down to DESKTOP (CREATE SHORTCUT) and that will give you the free spyware checker.

Here is Spybot  Use them both.  One catches what the other does not.

Disabling the Pop up blocker

When you want to print a coupon that needs a pop up, do a survey that needs a pop up, hold down the CTRL for each page to disable the pop up blocker for that 1 page.  Click on where you want to go and right away hit and hold down the CTRL key.  You also can REFRESH the page and then hold down the CTRL to disable the pop up.
Web Browser For Printing coupons    
Free alternative to competitive expensive office programs   It has everything that the $200 addition does.   Yes it will convert your text files and word documents.
Copy & Paste

Hold down the left mouse button starting at the top left of the text you want to copy.  Pull/drag it to the end of the text.   It will then be highlighted.  Go to the middle of the highlighted text. RIGHT CLICK the mouse.  A box will open up, look for COPY.  Click it and go to where you want to paste the text.  Make sure your cursor is in the spot you want to paste.  It is a flashing perpendicular line, RIGHT CLICK the mouse again but this time, look for PASTE.  Click it and you have now pasted the text you saved.  That text you just pasted will be available to paste again until you copy something else by doing the same procedure.
Booting computer into Safemode

When you start the computer up, press F8 repeatedly and you will boot into safe mode.  Many features are not available but sometimes you need Safemode when you are having troubles.  

This little program keeps the temperature of your Hard drive (HD) and your CPU (Central Processing Unit) displayed by your clock.  

You can change it for C or F settings.  A shortcut is placed on the desktop, DOUBLE CLICK it and the fan will open up and load next to your clock.  You will have to do this each time you boot up.  If you're brave, click the shortcut and hold onto it.  While you still have it go to start, go to PROGRAMS, over to ACCESSORIES and find START UP.  Then follow the arrow over to the next spot and let go of the mouse and the shortcut should go there  and Speed Fan will automatically start when you boot up.  

Hold your mouse pointer over it and it will show HD for hard drive first in the box that comes up and CPU will be listed as TEMP 1.  To change the C to F settings, get the cursor over the box and right click.  When a box opens up, click RESTORE.  

A box will open on the computer.  READINGS tab will be the one you want, then look for CONFIGURE button and click it.  Another box opens.  Click on the OPTIONS tab and there you can change the background color for the temp setting, change the color of the temp settings and change to F readouts.  It's the last option on the bottom of the page.  

Click OK, hit the minus on the 1st box and see how hot your computer gets.  Laptops should not be over 70C (mobile chips) and hard drives over 55C and desktops should not be over 55C for CPU, and 50 for HD unless you have a Pentium 4 or D and they can be 65C and still be OK.  My laptop runs 50C and 51C.  I have a program that runs the CPU constant, so mine stays a little warmer than most.  
 Search feature

Hold down CTRL and hit F on the keyboard.  A box will open up and you can put your word in there and click FIND NEXT.  Also at the top of CENTsible and Off Topic, Michele has placed a search feature for us.  It searches the entire 2 weeks of chat by author, key word or post # rather than 1 page method using the CTRL and F.  
Privacy settings

Changing PRIVACY settings.  Go to Tools on the IE page, click it and go down to find INTERNET OPTIONS, click it.  On the box that opens up find the PRIVACY tab and click it.  Make sure the setting is on MED, click APPLY and then OK if you change it.  Might try a reboot after you change the settings but it should work.  Sometimes a change needs to be set in the BIOS and that needs the computer to be restarted to do that.
Using Windows utility program

When you install and uninstall new files, you leave little pieces behind that junk up the computer and slows it down.  Double click MY COMPUTER.  Right click when the cursor is over the main drive, usually marked C drive.  Go down to PROPERTIES and click it.  On the box that opens up, click the TOOLS tab.  ERROR CHECKING is the top function, click CHECK NOW.  Check the next box that opens, AUTOMATICALLY FIX ERRORS and the box SCAN FOR AND ATTEMPT RECOVERY OF BAD SECTORS.  Click START.  

You will have a box come up that says it cannot be done do you want to schedule the test on the next start up.  Click YES and close off all the other boxes.  Next time you reboot, the computer come up with a light blue screen and go through a utility program to check the hard drive.  When it's done, it will restart and all errors that are diagnosed will be fixed.  You also can do a defrag from the same place.  

Here are some things to try for paper jams, frozen printer.  

Unplugging it.  That bleeds out the residual power and might reset it.  Shut down the computer and leave it off, unplug the printer power and then unhook the cable to goes to the computer, leave it set for 10 minutes or so, hook the cable back up to the computer, then plug the power back in and turn on the computer.

You could try uninstalling the printer program and then install it back on.
Is there a button like OK or reset?  Try pushing buttons.
Look in where the cartridges are and look for a piece of paper that might be stuck somewhere.
Try getting the ink cartridges out and putting them back in. 
Clipboard Pop Ups -- thanks to Belynda W, TX
All of a sudden, when I go to certain pages, especially survey sites that I've done for years, a small box comes up asking if I want to allow this page to paste information from my clipboard? It won't let me X out of it, and if I push yes or no, it doesn't matter...just keeps popping back up and I cannot complete the page. It won't let me right click...anyone have ANY ideas what this annoying little thing is and how to get rid of it?
If you recently upgraded your Internet Explorer, this is a new "security feature." To fix it, in your Internet Explorer, go to Internet Options, and click on the Security tab. Click on Custom Level. Scroll down almost to the bottom and look for "Allow Programmatic clipboard access." Change this to Enable. Click OK, and OK again until you are out of Internet Options. You should be good to go. 

"Manually stopping Pop Ups" should be explored as well with this problem.  This will help with the new Operating System (OS) Vista problem.
Computer Clock time change

For Windows XP
Right click when your cursor is over the clock. A box will open up. Go to ADJUST DATE/TIME and click it. Click on the INTERNET TIME tab. Make sure the box is checked that says:
 Automatically synchronize with an Internet time server
Click APPLY and then OK and it will take care of and will set it to the Atomic clock. You also can click UPDATE NOW and do it manually.
Cookies Not On

Try refreshing your page 1st.  That will place the cookie there and most computers have the cookie feature already on.

Your security setting might be to high
For IE, go to TOOLS and click, go down to INTERNET OPTIONS, click it.  On the box that opens up, click on the PRIVACY tab.  Set the slider to MEDIUM, click apply and then OK.  You "might" need to reboot for the setting to take.. 
Finding IE Favorites file.

Double click on your computer icon on your desktop. Double click on LOCAL DISK, usually C. Double click DOCUMENTS AND SETTINGS. There will be several file folders in there. Depending on what you named your computer. Double click each one until you see FAVORITES on the page, it's a big gold star. Double click it. Go to VIEW and go down to LIST and click it. They will all be listed in a line with the webpage addy on it. You can print them out, copy and paste them in an e-mail to send to yourself and you will always have them.  
Making line breaks using HTML code

To start a new line on a Chat post, using the carrots <   >, hold down the shift
key and hit the COMMA first, place the letters br in it and
then SHIFT and hit the PERIOD key.  To make a line in
between that will start a new paragraph, use the carrots 
<    >  but put the letter p in it.  Do not use any other letters.  

HTML has to be written perfectly or it will change the whole board.  Not closing off the command properly is usually what causes that.  Posts that are written with any other HTML code in it will be deleted.