Sunday, March 27, 2016

Netgear 8-port router FVS318G troubles - fixed!

We've been having troubles with our home network going down randomly.  It was getting worse and worse.  At first, I blamed Comcast, and there was indeed a problem there, but a technician came out and fixed that.  I finally figured out that the culprit must be our Netgear 8-port firewall router.  I think it has a relay in it and those eventually fail. (It would be nice if they supplied a circuit diagram, but that was the old days.)  This router was in use for years, not sure how many.  So I got a new FVS318Gv2 and installed it.  Bingo, no network problems.

Friday, February 27, 2015

What I Installed (and uninstalled) On My New PC

Installed:

Adobe Flash Player (alas)
Adobe Photoshop Elements 13 (from Costco)
Adobe Reader
Chess Hero
Eudora 6.2 (old mail program for my top 70 list)
EXIF file date changer
Firefox web browser
Houdini chess program
HP all-in-one software
iTunes
Java
MS HealthVault
MS Office Pro 2013
MS Visual Studio 2012
MUP music authoring program
NVIDIA graphics drivers
WD SmartWare backup
WinSCP FTP program

Uninstalled:

Bing Bar
Cyberlink
Norton

Friday, February 13, 2015

Paint Desktop Version

I got a new HP computer.  It's nice and fast.  I'm doing my usual customizing.

Starting with PaintDesktopVersion.  This shows the Windows version and build number that you're running in text in the lower right of the desktop background.

To activate (so I will remember in future): Windows key + R and run regedit.  Navigate to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop.  Find the DWORD value PaintDesktopVersion (or create it if necessary) and set the value to 1.  Reboot.

Windows 8.1 very slow after update

Windows insisted on updating my Windows 8.1 installation.  It said save your stuff, we're rebooting in 14 minutes!  Now that's annoying, but even worse, after the reboot, it ran slow as molasses in winter.

I finally figured out what was wrong.  I ran Task Manager and clicked on the Performance tab.  Down at the bottom is a button/link for the Resource Manager.  I clicked that and it showed my C: disk, not full, but being used 100% of the time.  Sure enough, the disk light was on almost continuously.  Something funky with the C: disk!

After googling about this, I ran (in an admin level command line) chkdsk /r/f c: and then had to reboot for it to take effect.  This command checks and repairs the hard disk.  They tend to fail after about 5 years.  Anyway, this ran for HOURS stuck at 12% but finally completed and the problem was fixed!

So yay for chkdsk.


Monday, December 8, 2014

Problems with WD SmartWare install: UPDF_UNLK1.html

I had problems updating my Western Digital backup software, WD SmartWare.  It stopped in the middle of the install saying it couldn't copy the file UPDF_UNLK1.html and this file was like a tar baby - you touch it and Windows Exlorer hangs and I had to reboot.

I finally figured out a fix: rename the WD SmartWare folder to WD StupidWare.  After that, the install worked fine and even deleted the WD StupidWare folder, too.

Friday, October 25, 2013

More Windows 8.1

There were a couple of annoying things that came up in Windows 8.1.  I had to switch from my old "local" login to my xbox/hotmail Microsoft account, which I didn't want to do.  I found out later that I could have avoided this by disconnecting the Internet during the Windows 8.1 install -- word to the wise.

Also, I had to re-do the registry hack to add the Copy to Folder and Move to Folder options when right-clicking a file.  I had this before, but it got zapped during the "upgrade" to Windows 8.1.

So now I've had Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 for awhile.  It seems to me no better, and in some respects worse, than Windows 7.  Let's hope that in the post-Ballmer era, a new direction is found for Windows.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Extending our WiFi network

We have a fairly big house, and one corner of it was not getting WiFi from our Apple Airport Time Capsule.  I bought an Airport Extreme to extend it.  I was expecting a nightmare of configuration debugging to follow. I figured I would probably have to set it up as a separate Wifi.  But not so!  I hooked up the Airport extreme and went back to Shelly's iMac.  There was a dialog box asking me if I wanted to extend our existing network.  I said Yes and that was it!  The network was extended seamlessly to the far corner of the house.  Hats off to Apple for this one.