When I log in to my Windows computer, I get a message saying that it can't load the local profile & I've been logged in using a temporary profile. What causes this and can it be fixed?
This problem can be repaired. It is usually caused because your personal profile has been corrupted by an improper shutdown, malware, a recently installed program or even a failing hard drive. The quickest repair is to perfom a system restore. In Windows XP, Vista or WIndows 7 the procedure is very similar.
Go to your start button => Accessories => System Tools and choose "System Restore". Here, you can choose a restore point. To see older restore points in Windows Vista / 7, click on the square on the bottom left that says something like: "show more restore points". In Windows 8, you have to go to "Control Panel" and choose "Recovery". This is where "System Restore" is located in Windows 8.
If this doesn't work for you, then it's time to call your favorite local computer service provider. Vanisle IT Services can help you.
I received a phone call from someone claiming to be with Windows Security or someone affiliated with Microsoft. They said my computer is sending out computer viruses & they wanted me to go to my computer so they can help me solve my computer problems. Is this legit?
Unless you have contacted Microsoft directly and paid for a technical issue, MICROSOFT WILL NOT CALL YOU. This is a known scam. This is fraudulent in nature and the caller will try to ellicit money from you for contractual technical services sometimes into the hundreds of dollars. If you get one of these calls, just be polite and then hang up.If you are concerned that there may actually be something on your computer, compromising your personal information or computer data, then give Vanisle IT Services a call. We can make sure you are safe.
I've been told that Apple computers don't get viruses and/or malware. Is this true?
Absolutely not true! There has been viruses/malware that has been able to affect Apple products since 1984. For a number of years, being affected by viruses and/or malware was very rare - there just weren't a lot of them out there while the Apple market share was low. However, things have changed. There have recently been quite a few viruses / malware that affect the Apple starting around 2008 and are even more prolific today.
Each year, there is a "Pwn to Own" computer hacking contest held at the annual CanSecWest security conference. This competition is designed to test security flaws in operating systems and web browsers. Apple's Safari web browser was the first to be hacked in less than 7 seconds. All operating systems and web browsers were eventually hacked.
Regardless of whether you own an Apple or a PC, it is extremely important that you invest in good antivirus and anti malware solutions to protect not only your computer & personal information but, also your sanity. Vanisle IT Services can help.
I have a message on my screen that says I have tons of viruses and malware. It wasn't there before and now I can't use my computer. What happened?
You may be working or browsing online when you notice a pop-up, which appears as an alert. It may say, "Warning: Your computer is infected with spyware. Buy [insert product here]." Another typical one is: "System has detected a number of active spyware applications that may impact the performance of your computer. Click the icon to get rid of unwanted spyware by downloading an up-to-date anti-spyware solution." It is understandable that you click OK to either get more information or to purchase the software to protect your computer system, but this is how rogue antivirus programs become installed on your computer. Some, however, actually install without user permission, which makes removal and prevention even more vital.
This is a scam. This is fraudulent (rogue) software designed to ellicit money or personal data from you and is produced by organized crime. This type of software is also referred to as "scareware". The software claims to be a form of antivirus software but, is nothing more than garbage software. Under NO circumstances, should you give your credit card information to buy the product because you think it will help. Should you do so, you may be giving your credit card information to organized crime. You can only imagine the ramifications of this. If you have paid for these programs, immediatley call your credit card issuer and cancel your credit card. Your credit card issuer can issue you a new credit card with a different account number.
To remove these types of programs can be very difficult and is not for the novice user. It is reccomended that you contact your favorite computer business to provide this service. Vanisle IT Services offers this service as well. A small price to pay for protecting you personal & financial information.
How do I get into Safe Mode?
To get into the Windows 2000 / XP / Vista / Win 7 Safe mode, as the computer is booting keep tapping "F8 Key", which should bring up the "Windows Advanced Options Menu". Use your arrow keys to move to "Safe Mode" and press your Enter key. If after several attempts you are unable to get into Windows 2000 or Windows XP Safe Mode as the computer is booting into Windows, turn off your computer. When the computer is turned on the next time Windows should notice that the computer did not successfully boot and give you the Safe Mode screen. Windows 8 does not have the same type of "safe mode". It is reccommended that you use you Windows 8 repair disk to do this (if you don't have one, use another Windows 8 computer to create the disk) and boot the computer from this disk.
Tip: If you are running Safe Mode because you cannot get into Windows, you may want to first try loading the last known good configuration.
Not enough RAM memory?
There are a lot of older systems and even newer ones that have this issue. Ram is very inexpensive these days and upgrading your computer with more ram is one of the best methods to speed up your computer. We recommend the minimum and optimum for the following operating systems for good system performance;
Windows 2K/XP min 1GB (Reccommended 2GB)
Windows Vista: min 2GB (Reccommended 4GB)
Windows 7: min 2GB (Reccommended 4GB)
Windows 8: min 2GB (Reccommended 4GB)
Why is my computer is overheating?
Computers need air to keep them cool (except liquid cooled systems). Cool air is drawn into the computer via vents and fans, and warm air is expelled out the rear or top via fans. Over time, dust, dirt, animal hair/dander are all drawn into the computer and settle on heatsinks and all other components. This acts like an insulation blanket and prevents the system from cooling. When your computer starts to overheat, system errors, component failure, and computer shutdowns can occur. Depending on your situation, your computer(s) may need to be cleaned every 3-6 months or every 6-12 months. rAvoid cleaning the inside of your computer with a vacuum (especially with a brush tool). This can cause static electricity to build up, discharge and damage your electronics. You can buy dust cleaning materials (canned air) from your local computer shop or ask them to provide a cleaning service. Vanisle IT Services offers this service as well.
Too many programs on startup?
When programs are installed they quite commonly add a component that starts when you turn on the computer. These include such things as antivirus programs, program updaters, drivers, and wireless connection software. Unfortunately, software that is not required to run your system can also load on startup. These include torrent downloaders, file sharing programs, malware, trojan viruses and advertising software.
Microsoft has a great little utility where you can manage the programs that load when you start. It's called: "Microsoft Confiuration Utility". In Windows XP, Vista/Win7 you click on the start button and in the "Run`` or ``search`` bar, type ``msconfig`` (without the quotes) and press ``enter`` on your keyboard or click with your mouse. this brings up the utility. On the top of the window, there are several tabs - choose the ``startup`` tab. From here, you can select what runs and what doesn`t on startup - just by removing the tickmark in front of what you don`t want to run. In Windows 8, use the "Task Manager", then choose startup and you can use the enable or disable buttons to perform the same task.
How long do computers last?
The average life span of a computer is about 3-5 years. There are many variables that can reduce the life span though, such as how much you use it and how hard you push it, environmental heat and humidity, dust, animal hair, dander and insects. Yes, your computer can really have bugs! If you are preparing to purchase a new PC or Mac, and don't plan on buying another one for some time, upgradeability is important. You can get long term use from your system, although you may need to replace individual components that may wear out, such as your Hard Disc Drive. Of course, the better the quality of your system components, the longer the life and reliability of the computer. This is especially true of PC's since there are so many possible configurations available.
Where should I buy a new computer?
Utimately, the choice is yours. If you are looking for the cheapest price, big box stores are usually your best bet. If you are looking for quality, after sales service and a local warranty depot for the quickest service at a reasonable price, then, contact your favorite local computer business - Vanisle IT Services is happy to help you.
Why is my Internet connection so slow?
There are a number of reasons for this including, but not limited to a lack of RAM memory, bad proxy settings, data corruption, bad ethernet cables, failing routers and so forth. The most common reasons though are things like toolbars, downloaders, torrents, malware and browser redirectors.
If you are using Internet Explorer, just go to ``control panel`` and choose ``internet options``. Click on the advanced tab and choose ``reset`` at the bottom right. This restores the default settings but leaves your favorites intact. Most internet browsers today allow you to manage your add-ons under the options/tools menu on your browser. Some add-ons can slow your internet experience down so much that you may become very frustrated.
Why does my computer reboot itself randomly?
A computer shutting down or rebooting can be caused by a number of things. The 4 most common are a power supply going bad, motherboard going bad, a hard drive that has developed bad sectors or the computer overheating. If it's just shutting down then it may be a case of it over heating. The second is when your power supply starts to fail. The power supply converts household AC power to DC - which provides power to all of your hardware components. If it is starting to fail, then it can just shut off as if you unplugged the computer. They are fairly easy and cheap to replace.
Another common reason is when the hard drive develops bad sectors. A bad sector is a sector on a computer's disk drive or flash memory that cannot be used due to permanent damage (or an operating system's inability to successfully access it), such as physical damage to the disk surface (or sometimes sectors being stuck in a magnetic or digital state that cannot be reversed) or failed flash memory transistors. Symptoms can include system reboots, noticable loss of performance and system "freezing".
The worst case scenario is a failing motherboard. This will cause random shutdowns, reboots and Windows errors. There is no real method to check the motherboard at home. If you have to replace the motherboard, try to purchase a similar type or you may have to do a repair installation of Windows to get it to recognize it. Or if you don't need to save anything you can do a clean installation of Windows or a restore from your recovery CD.
Tip: You can also look at your Windows Event Viewer to see if it indicates any issues that were happening around the time of the shutdown.
How do I clean my monitor?
If you have the older CRT monitor then it will have a glass screen and be easy to clean. You can spray some glass cleaner on a soft cloth then wipe down the screen and follow it up with a dry cloth. LCD monitors are more sensitve and are not as easy to clean. You never want to put too much pressure on an LCD screen since it may cause damage. First try a soft cloth like a microfiber cloth and gently wipe the screen. If its just dusty then you can use something like a Swiffer duster that is good at picking up dust. There are also special purpose LCD cleaning kits that do a good job of cleaning your screen without causing damage. Just be sure to never spray anything directly on your monitor.