Tuesday, August 18, 2009

"Open home page for new tabs instead of blank page" doesn't work

PROBLEM:IE7 "Open home page for new tabs instead of blank page" doesn'twork.

1.- Open Your *IE7* Browser.
2.- Press Keyboard combination *Ctrl+T*
3.- Select on the bottom of the new page "*Don't show this pageagain*".
4.- Click on Close.
5.- Click on Tools, Internet Options. Then Click over Tabs"*Settings*".
6.- Select "*Open home page for new tabs instead of a blank page*"
7.- Click *OK* Twice
8.- Done.

Open a new tab to your home page in Internet Explorer

If you prefer that your home page appear when you open a new tab, follow these steps:

1. Open Internet Explorer by clicking the Start button and then clicking Internet Explorer.
2. Click the Tools button and then click Internet Options.
3. Click the General tab, and then, under Tabs, click Settings.
4. In the Tabbed Browsing Settings dialog box do one of the following:
  • In Internet Explorer 8 click the list under When a new tab is opened, open, click Your first home page, click OK, and then click OK again.
  • In Internet Explorer 7 select the Open home page for new tabs instead of a blank page check box, click OK, and then click OK again.

Notes :
If you have multiple home page tabs, only the first home page in your list will open in the new tab.

If you open a new tab in Internet Explorer 7 and see a page that says "You've opened a new tab" after you've followed the steps above, select the Don't show this page again check box, and then click Close. When you restart Internet Explorer 7, your home page will display whenever you open a new tab.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Internet Explorer Zoom Function

Internet Explorer has a zoom function which can cause you to pull your hair out if it zooms in or out without your knowing how it occurred. If you're having trouble reading your webpages because they are too large or small check this first.

In the lower right corner of your browser window you should see a magnifying glass and a percentage. Click the down arrow to the right of the percentage and click 100%. That will readjust the page to normal viewing. To read more about this feature you can click the link below.


Thursday, August 13, 2009

"Windows cannot connect to the printer. Access is denied"

I came across an interesting issue recently when attempting to print to a network printer on a small network. I received a message stating "Windows cannot connect to the printer. Access is denied." I was able to access folders and see the printer. To get around this issue I performed the following:

Go to Control Panel>Printers>Add Printer

Choose Add a local printer. Click on Create a new port. The default in the drop down box is Local Port. Do not change that. Click Next.

A dialogue box will appear asking for you to enter a port name. Type in the \\computer_name\printer_name.

That did the trick for me. I hope that saves someone some time!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Bypass The Windows XP Log On Screen

To make logon an unattended process:
  • Click START>RUN and type "control userpasswords2" then Click OK.
  • The User Accounts Property Sheet displays. On the Users tab, clear the "Users must enter a user name and password to use this computer" check box. Click Apply.
  • Enter a user name and password that should be used to logon automatically in the dialog box that appears. Click OK.
  • Go to Control Panel then User Accounts then Change the Way Users Log On and Off. Uncheck "Use the Welcome Screen" and "Use Fast User Switching."

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Changing the Registered owner in Windows XP

Here's how to change the registered owner`s name on Win XP:

- Run regedit
- Find key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\Current Version
-Change your name in following subkey :Registered Owner

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Workaround to Install Java

I ran into a situation recently where Java needed to be installed on a pc but it would not install properly from the web or by running locally. Either msiexec.exe would crash or I would get a message similar to, "The Java cannot be downloaded to your machine. You are living in an embargoed country." After trying many things the solution that worked for me is below.

To install java do this:
- Start->Run->cmd
- go to your java directory (where the install .exe is located)
- type this command: {name of java executable}.exe /s /v"/qn ADDLOCAL=ALL IEXPLORER=1 INSTALLDIR=c:\java\jre"

Hope it helps you like it helped me!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Need a .dll file?

If you need a .dll file to resolve an issue the best website I've seen to download various .dll's is http://www.dlldump.com/ .

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Resolving an unrecognized USB Thumb Drive

After spending a lot of time troubleshooting a problematic USB thumb drive it was discovered that HP equipment plugged into USB ports can cause the problem. If you have an HP scanner and/or printer connected using USB ports, temporarily unplug them before you use your USB thumb drive.

Hopefully this tid bit saves you a lot of time...

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Email Merge

The Email Merge feature will allow you to send multiple CUSTOMIZED emails simultaneously. For instance, you will be able to create one email and send to many people at the same time all while inserting each recipients name to give it a custom touch.

In order to send email’s using the email merge feature you will first need to create a spreadsheet with any pertinent information. For starters, column headers named Title, First Name, Last Name, and Email Address should suffice. Once that spreadsheet is created and populated you are now ready to begin the email process.

You will need to use a MAPI-compatible email program such as Microsoft Outlook. Follow these steps to get started in Outlook 2003:

1. Begin a new message and on the Tools menu, point to Letters and Mailings, and then click Mail Merge.

2. Under Select document type, click E-mail messages.
The active document becomes the main document, where you will type the body of your e-mail message.

3. Click Next: Starting document on the bottom right of the screen and follow the remaining steps on-screen.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Microsoft Word and Excel open slowly

To resolve the issue with Microsoft Word and Excel opening slowly follow the steps below.
  • go to Control Panel, Folder Options, File Types
  • scroll down to and select DOC (for Word files) or XLS (for Excel files)
  • click Advanced
  • select Open entry
  • click the edit Button
  • Now uncheck "Use DDE"
  • put your cursor in the Application box
  • arrow all the way to the right and put in "%1" (include the quotemarks)
  • if there is /dde remove it
  • then OK you way out

You should now be back to working normally.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Conficker Virus - What to do?

If you suspect you have the Conficker virus / worm there are three things you must do. First, update your pc with the Microsoft patch to block the virus (it would be better to download all of the MS updates by using the Windows Update feature in Windows). Secondly, remove the virus. Lastly, it would be a good idea to run a complete virus and spyware scan of your system. Web addresses for each process are provided below. This virus is scheduled to unload on April 1st, 2009. If you need assistance, please let me know. I can be reached via my web page at http://www.georgephillipscomputerservices.com .

To install the Microsoft patch:

To download removal tool:

Free Virus software (AVG):

Free Online Virus Scanner:

Free Spyware Scanners:

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Got a virus but can't load Windows or scan in Safe Mode?

Hopefully never, but you could find yourself with a virus someday that prevents you from loading Windows normally. You may even be able to boot in safe mode but unable to run or install anti-virus software. What to do? Below are a few ideas to get you back on track.

First, try booting into Safe Mode with Networking. Then launch Internet Explorer and navigate to http://housecall.trendmicro.com/ to perform an online anti-virus scan free. You might also try http://www.bitdefender.com/scan8/ie.html or http://www.kaspersky.com/kos/eng/partner/default/kavwebscan.html . Once the viruses have been removed attempt to restart Windows normally. Once in Normal mode run a full virus scan with AVG or another product and also scan for spyware.

If you're unable to access the Internet via Safe Mode with Networking there is still hope. However, you will need another pc. From the second working computer download Stinger (a small anti-virus tool able to run in Safe Mode) and Ad-Aware. Put the software on media that can be transferred to the infected pc. Launch the infected pc in Safe Mode and install Stinger and Ad-Aware. Scan for infections using both products. Once the pc is working better either try to boot normally to do a more thorough scan or try again with Safe Mode with Networking to do an online scan.

These steps could save you a lot of time and aggravation when disaster strikes!

Friday, February 20, 2009

Free Image Editor

I came across a free image editor that is very powerful and wanted to share. There are those times that you want to touch up an image but don't have or need expensive software to do the job. You might just need it for a one-time fix or to make custom icons or images with transparent backgrounds. Well, this tool is for you. It can be found at http://www.rw-designer.com/image-editor . There is good documentation as well to learn how to use the features.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Got a backup?

It will happen. The day that you least expect for your hard drive to crash, it very well could. Don't be caught without a current backup. It's very easy to do so there really are no excuses. I've found the best way to keep your computer data safe is by investing in an external USB hard drive. Many external hard drives come with software to perform automatic backups on a regular basis. Other software is available that will make a complete image of your drive so that it can be restored quickly and easily including all software, operating system and data. The added protection is worth the investment.

Monday, February 2, 2009

BSOD code: 0x000000FC or 0x0000007E after XP SP3

This was a doosey! I had a situation today where a user attempted to install Windows XP Service Pack 3. After the reboot they got the blue screen of death with error code 0x000000FC. The pc would not boot into Safe Mode either. They exhaused all of their options then called in for support. Below I'll summarize the steps I took to resolve this issue. You can give this a try if you experience these problems.

  • I disabled Data Execution Prevention in the Bios and tried to boot. The BSOD error code changed to 0x0000007E.
  • I noticed that when no usb devices are plugged into the pc it will boot. Of course, that's not a good solution but at least points in the right direction. The usb driver is the culprit!
  • I Replaced the SP3 versions of windows\system32\drivers\usbehci.sys and windows\system32\drivers\usbport.sys with old (sp2) versions using the Recovery Console.
  • I was then able to boot into Windows normally!

This solution worked beautifully on this system and everything is now back to normal. If you're ever in this situation give this solution a try. It may save you a lot of time!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Slow PC?

I worked on another computer tonight that was bogged down and super slow. If you have this problems there are a few straightforward things you can do:

  • See if any programs can be removed from the Add/Remove Programs list in Control Panel. Especially remove the toolbars and other suspicious programs. Sometimes McAfee and Norton products put an excessive strain on a system and should be removed.
  • Install all of the latest Microsoft patches.
  • If you removed McAfee or Norton earlier you can install AVG now.
  • Scan for viruses and spyware.
  • Adjust the startup environment so that very few programs launch at bootup.
  • Check for plenty of free disk space.
  • Check for adequate amount of RAM. Adding more can never hurt.
  • Check to see if disk needs to be defragmented.
  • Remove temporary internet files from Internet Explorer.
  • Also clean out the inside of the pc to remove dust. That can cause overheating which will slow it down and cause it to fail prematurely.

That's a few things that should get you back on the right road to faster computing.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Norton problems

I'm currently working with a user who was getting the red x in Symantec and couldn't install any virues definition updates. The error messages were relating to the Live Update service running in the background. We can't even remove Norton the normal way through Add/Remove programs. To get around these types of issues use the Norton Removal Tool. Since this person only had a few days left in their subscription we decided to remove Norton completely and install the free version of AVG. I highly recommend AVG antivirus. It is free for individual use but companies must pay and register. It finds many viruses and spyware that the paid products leave behind.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Unexpected shutdowns

I was having a problem with a pc at my job continuing to shutdown unexpectedly back in December. After doing many things to the pc I finally discovered the problem. There were bulging, leaking capacitors on the motherboard near the processor. That was the first time that I had experienced that but here again I found this problem with one of my customers at GPCS. After doing the preliminary troubleshooting steps I found this again. The motherboard needs to be replaced but isn't really cost effective. The repair cost is around $200 for an older pc. I informed my customer but advised them that if it were mine I wouldn't put that much money at an older pc but would consider buying a new one now. That's what they did. I am not in the business of building computers from scratch. I can do it but think a complete system from a reputable manufacturer is the best way to go. I am now in the process of getting the data off their old hard drive and will be moving it to their new computer in the next day or so. They'll have all of their data and Internet shortcuts on their new computer system. The only drawback is that any programs they had will need to be reinstalled. Otherwise, they will be in much better shape than before. So if you have this problem take a peek at the capacitors closely on the motherboard. They could be the culprit.

In the beginning...

Currently in the process of setting up a server with web, mail, and ftp services. I'll also be using the server to perform remote control services to my customers via my business website at http://www.georgephillipscomputerservices.com .