Has My Hard Drive Failed?

Dear Computer Lady,

I have a 4 year old quad core desktop running Win 7 Ultimate. All of a sudden my hard drive made noises and turned itself off.

I ran Spinrite for 3 days and it seemed to “cure” the problem. However, the PC shut down after a couple of hours of normal use.

How can I tell if my hard drive has failed and I definitely need a new one?

Thanks, Martin Read More…

Best Program For A List

Dear Computer Lady,

My prayer group meets weekly and prays for many people.
We keep a list by category, say those with cancer, with heart problems etc.

Could you recommend a good way to keep these lists of names on my computer by category so that I could add or delete names and then print these new lists? I’m not sure what type of program would do this kind of thing. I have a HP computer with Windows 7. I use spreadsheets but don’t know much about word processing.

Thank you for any help, Helen Read More…

Internet Explorer Missing Toolbars

Dear Computer Lady,

Somehow, either in the process of installing Internet Explorer 10 or after, I have lost all my tool bars?

I mean ALL the tool bars like the file. print etc. plus the useful web pages I use.

What happened and how do I get them back?

You really do quite a service with your Computer Lady.

Thanks, Les Read More…

Advanced Tech Support Scam

Dear Computer Lady,

We bought a Windows 7 Dell computer last November and had techs set it up. So we thought we had Panda Anti-virus. Then when it ran out we bought Panda Anti-virus 2014 and we could not install it. So we called the Panda Company and according to their tech, we found out that our computer was in terrible shape (55,000 errors and the reason might have been that when we bought the computer it had Norton and then our “geeks” installed Panda and the tech said neither could function well- is that true?). So they said they had a partnership with Advanced Tech Support and I turned over the computer to them and for $250 they fixed everything. However I was told to call a number and the gal said we needed Malware protection which started at $500 until I yelled and came down to another $250. We have no idea if that is really necessary for two old people who only use online for email and to surf the net (also buying).

Thank you for your wonderful column and help.

Sincerely, Carol Read More…

Cleaning Your Computer

Dear Computer Lady,

My Windows Vista goes to sleep everytime I dust the key board off. I try to avoid the sleep key (it has a moon on the button) but it’s very sensitive.

I always have to shut down the computer completely and turn it back on to WAKE it up.

What can I do to wake the computer up?

Thank you, Mary Read More…

FLV Media Player Alerts

Dear Computer Lady,

I have started getting these messages-pop-ups that I need to download an updated version of a media player. When I do it just brings all kinds of problems.

I am using IE 7/ What is trying to download is FLV Media Player Version1.3.

Is this something I need? If not, how do I keep it from coming up all the time? I have downloaded it twice then uninstalling it because of all the pop-ups and other junk. I thought I would see what you had to say. Thanks for your information.

Read More…

Blue Screen of Death Causes

Dear Computer lady,

I have just had my first and hopefully my last bout with “The Blue Screen of Death.” I have windows 8.1 on an HP desktop.

The tech that got me back working again, feels that the AVG program I was running was responsible. I have been using AVG anti virus programs on three different computers for at least 5 years or so and haven’t had any problems.

I would appreciate your take.
He recommended Avira anti virus.

Look forward to your weekly columns. Tom Read More…

Startup Repair

Dear Computer Lady,

For the last 2 months my toshiba pc, running win vista, keeps doing a startup repair every time i start it, but then it tells it could not fix it and to send info to microsoft, and then it shuts down.

I start it again and 50/50 it starts up,,but not always and it goes for another restartup repair.

I’m going crazy over this. Pc is only 2-3 yrs old.

Many thanks for your great newsletter, and your help

Rena in fla Read More…

Can I Delete Files on D?

Dear Computer Lady,

C & D have the same identical files.

Can I delete the D files?

Teddy Read More…

Using Multiple Browsers

Dear Computer Lady,

I have XP and IE8 on my computer.

If I download Firefox or Chrome will I have any problems using IE for some things and Firefox or Chrome for other’s?

I’ve only used IE and don’t have any experience with other browsers. I also have Kaspersky for my virus protection.

Thank you for any advice, I appreciate it.

Darla Read More…