PC Support: Most Popular Articles
Here's what to do when your computer won't turn on. Fix a desktop, laptop, or tablet that won't boot all the way, or even one that won't start at all.
Here's how to install Windows 8 or 8.1 from a USB device like a flash drive. You'll need to properly format the USB drive and then copy the Windows 8 files.
Windows password recovery tools are used to recover Windows log on passwords. Here are the 7 best free Windows password recovery and cracking tools.
Free data recovery software, aka free file recovery or undelete software, can help recover deleted files. Here are reviews of the best ones out there.
A list of public and completely free DNS servers, plus instructions on how to change them. This DNS server list was last updated in November 2014.
Where and how to download and update DirectX. Updating DirectX 11, DirectX 10, or DirectX 9 is easy and could improve game performance in Windows.
Does your computer turn on but show just a black screen? If some things seem to be working properly, but there's no display, give this a try...
Getting an ISO file onto a USB drive isn't as easy as copying the file. Here's a complete tutorial on how to burn an ISO to USB, like a flash drive.
Help on what to do when your computer gets stuck or freezes (locked-up) during the installation or configuration of a Windows update.
Before you can install Windows 7 from a USB flash drive, you must properly format the drive and then copy the setup files to it. Here's how.
The 500 Internal Server Error (aka HTTP 500 error) is a generic error suggesting a problem with the website's server. Here's what you can do about it.
Nearly two dozen Command Prompt tricks and other Command Prompt hacks to help you get the most out of the Command Prompt in Windows 7, 8, Vista, or XP.
You can reset your Windows 7 password if you've forgotten it. Learn how to reset the password to your Windows 7 account, for free, without extra software.
A complete tutorial on how to start Windows 7 in Safe Mode. Starting Windows 7 in Safe Mode can help diagnose and solve many serious problems.
Here are several ways to access Advanced Startup Options, the recovery and repair menu in Windows 8 & 8.1 including System Restore, Safe Mode, and more.
Easy instructions on how to wipe a hard drive. A hard drive wipe will erase everything on the hard drive - something deleting and formatting can not do.
Enter BIOS with these steps. Access BIOS to make hardware configuration changes, set boot order, reset BIOS passwords, change BIOS settings, and more.
Try not to panic if you forgot your Windows 7 password. Luckily, there are a number of things you can do to overcome a forgotten password.
Instructions on how to make your computer boot from a USB device, like a flash drive or a USB connected hard drive.
The 502 Bad Gateway error means that two different servers involved in loading a web page (or other task) are not able to communicate. Here's what to do...
How to fix the BOOTMGR is Missing and Couldn't Find BOOTMGR errors that sometimes appear during startup on a Windows 8, 7, or Vista computer.
The 404 Not Found error, often called Error 404 or an HTTP 404 error, means that the webpage you were trying to load was not found. Here's what to do.
Most download Windows 7 to reinstall it, after losing a Windows 7 DVD or never receiving one. But from where? Is it legal? I have answers!
The 403 Forbidden error means that whatever resource or webpage you were trying to access is forbidden from being accessed. Here are some things to try.
A list of the best free remote desktop programs, sometimes called free remote access or remote control software. Last updated November, 2014.
One easy way of backing up a disc is creating an ISO image of it. See these easy instructions for creating an ISO image file from a CD, DVD, or BD disc.
Ophcrack is simply the best free Windows password recovery software program available. See my full review of Ophcrack LiveCD v3.6.0.
A complete tutorial on how to reset a Windows 8 password, for free, without using password recovery software or other third-party software.
Want to download Windows 8 or 8.1 instead of buying it on disc? Need to download Windows 8.1 or 8 to replace a DVD or ISO? What about for free? I have answers!
A tutorial on starting Windows 8 or 8.1 in Safe Mode. If you can start Windows 8 in Safe Mode you may be able to fix whatever startup problem you're having.
A Windows 7 clean install tutorial with screenshots and full instructions. A clean install of Windows 7 is often the best way to reinstall Windows 7.
A complete list of the over 280 Command Prompt commands across Windows 8, 7, Vista, and XP, including full descriptions of each CMD command.
Easy to follow tutorial to help fix a Blue Screen of Death. A BSOD might be caused by hardware or software so proper troubleshooting is important.
Detailed tutorial on how to change the boot order in BIOS. A change to the boot sequence will change the order in which devices are booted from.
A guide on accessing Command Prompt in Windows 8 & 8.1. You'll need to open a Command Prompt window to execute most commands in Windows 8.
Detailed tutorial on how to format a hard drive in Windows 7. You must format a hard drive to use it in Windows 7.
The sfc scannow option is the most useful way to run System File Checker. Using sfc with the scannow option will scan and repair important Windows files.
The 503 Service Unavailable error means that the web site's server is not available, usually due to maintenance or server overloading.
A list of the best freeware registry cleaners available today. Free registry cleaners remove duplicate or unwanted entries from the Windows Registry.
Recuva is the very best free file recovery program available. I highly recommend you try Recuva before any other undelete program.
A DAT file might be a video, email, or generic data file. Learn how to open a .DAT file or convert a DAT file to another file format.
Disk Management in Windows 7 can be accessed from the Computer Management utility. Follow these steps to open Disk Management in Windows 7.
A list of 22 free key finder software programs, ranked and reviewed. Keyfinders find lost software product keys or serial numbers. Updated November, 2014.
A list of ways to find the Windows 7 administrator password. An admin password in Windows 7 is the one needed to access some advanced areas in Windows.
No, you are not locked out of your computer forever if you forgot your Windows 8 password. Here are several things you can do to get back in.
How to safely clean your flat screen monitor or TV. LCD, LED, and other flat screens require special care when cleaning to prevent permanent damage.
A list of free hard drive testing software programs. These hard drive test programs will do just that - test your hard drive for problems.
An easy tutorial on making Windows 8 or 8.1 login automatically. Configuring Windows 8 to auto logon is easy but should only be done in secure environments.
Looking for a free file format converter? Here's a list of 100% free file converter programs for video files, audio files, image files, and more.
An ISO file is a single file containing all the data from a CD, DVD, or BD. The ISO file (or ISO image) is a perfect representation of the whole disc.
A complete list of Command Prompt commands in Windows 7. There are over 230 commands, referred to as CMD commands or DOS commands, in Windows 7.
It's really simple to update Internet Explorer, which involves either downloading and installing the latest version, or using Windows Update. Here's how.
Three ways to clear the CMOS memory on your motherboard. Clearing CMOS will reset your BIOS settings to their factory default levels.
There are lots of reasons why a computer might not be getting any power. If you turn on your computer and it doesn't power on at all, give this a try...
How to fix the This device cannot start. (Code 10) error in Device Manager. Code 10 errors are often due to driver issues.
How to fix the Code 43 error in Device Manager. Code 43 errors appear when a device reports general problems to Windows.
Easy instructions on how to open Registry Editor, the program included in Windows 8, 7, Vista, and XP that's used to make changes to the registry.
Easy instructions on how to make Windows 7 login automatically! Configuring Windows 7 to auto login can substantially speed your PC's total boot time.
A hardware issue or short is a likely cause of these types of issues. If you turn on your computer and it promptly turns itself off, give this a try...
A step by step tutorial to install Windows 8 or 8.1 from a USB flash drive, complete with screenshots and details on each necessary step.
Xinput1_3.dll Not Found errors usually indicate a DirectX problem. Don't download xinput1_3.dll, fix the problem the right way.
The default gateway IP address is usually the IP address for your router. Learn how to find the default gateway in Windows 8, 7, Vista, or XP.
An EPUB file is an Open Publication Structure eBook file. Learn how to open an .EPUB file or convert an EPUB file to another file format.
Basic information about Microsoft Windows 7 including editions, service packs, release date, minimum and maximum hardware, and more.
The 400 Bad Request error means that the request you sent to the website server to view the page was incorrect somehow. Here are some things to try.
There are many reasons that you might see an NTLDR is Missing error message. Here's how to fix the NTLDR is Missing error and other NTLDR errors.
A 504 Gateway Timeout error, also called an HTTP 504 error, means that one server didn't receive a response from another quickly enough so it timed out.
Detailed instructions on how to make your computer boot from a CD, DVD, or BD disc. You may need to boot from a disc to install Windows, run live CDs, etc.
A really frustrating problem is when Windows hangs or gets stuck while starting. If Windows starts to load but freezes without an error, give this a try...
A tutorial on opening Control Panel in Windows 8 & 8.1. Control Panel contains links to most of the tools used to configure various aspects of Windows 8.
Here are 5 ways to format C drive. To format C means to format the drive that the operating system is on, which is usually the C drive.
Here's how to force Windows to start in Safe Mode on the next reboot, assuming you can't do so in other ways like from Startup Settings or the F8 menu.
Reviews of the best online backup services, updated November 2014. Online backup services back up your files to secure data centers over the Internet.
A step-by-step, screenshot based walkthrough of one of the most successful Windows 7 password reset procedures. No third-party software required!
The net use command is used to manage shared resources. Learn more about the net use command and see several net use command examples.
A TGZ file is a GZIP Compressed Tar Archive file. Learn how to open a .TGZ file or convert a TGZ file to another file format.
Don't want to fix your computer yourself? Here are your options, including calling tech support, finding a local repair service, and a lot more.
In most cases, you'll need to burn an ISO file to a DVD before you can use it. Here are easy instructions for burning an ISO image to a CD, DVD, or BD disc.
Instructions on how to find your lost Microsoft Office product key. A product key is required to install Microsoft Office 2013, 2010, 2007, etc.
The Advanced Boot Options menu is a menu of advanced Windows startup and troubleshooting modes, including Safe Mode.
Here are several free data destruction software programs, sometimes called disk wipe software or hard drive eraser software. Last updated November, 2014.
Command Prompt is a command line interpreter program available in Windows. Command Prompt is similar in appearance to MS-DOS.
A complete tutorial on rebuilding the Boot Configuration Data (BCD) store in Windows 8, 7, or Vista. The bootrec command is used to rebuild the BCD.
Not sure if you have a 64-bit or 32-bit version of Windows 8? You need to know so you install the right drivers and software. Here's how to find out.
A tutorial for completing a Windows 7 Startup Repair. Running a Startup Repair is a good first troubleshooting step if Windows 7 isn't starting properly.
Software you download could have malware, adware, PUPs, and other issues. Here's how to safely download and install software on your computer.
A detailed tutorial on how to correct problems caused by Windows updates, including security updates pushed by Microsoft on Patch Tuesday.
List of BIOS access keys for major computer systems from Gateway, Toshiba, Dell, Sony, eMachines, HP, Lenovo, Acer, and more.
Download the latest Windows 8 & 8.1 drivers for your hardware, updated November 4, 2014. Download Windows 8 sound, video, printer, and other drivers.
A Windows 8 & 8.1 clean install tutorial with detailed instructions and screenshots. A clean install is the best way to install Windows 8 or Windows 8 Pro.
A list of free Internet speed test sites, updated November 2014. An Internet speed test, or broadband speed test, tests your available bandwidth.
How to fix the STOP 0x0000007B code (INACCESSIBLE_BOOT_DEVICE) on a Blue Screen of Death. These are usually driver, virus, or hardware issues.
Hearing beep codes when you turn on your computer? Beep codes are clues as to why your computer isn't working. Here's what to do.
D3dcompiler_43.dll Not Found errors usually indicate a DirectX problem. Don't download d3dcompiler_43.dll, fix the problem the right way.
A Dynamic Link Library, or DLL, file is a kind of file that contains specific code that many programs can share. Here's more on DLL files...
A complete tutorial on using System Restore in Windows 8. A System Restore can fix problems by undoing registry, driver, and other changes in Windows 8.
Lost your Windows 7 product key? Here's how to find your Windows 7 product key using a free key finder program which will extract the key from the registry.
CCleaner is without a doubt the best free registry cleaner available. See my full review of CCleaner, a free program from Piriform.
If security isn't a concern, you can remove (delete) your Windows 7 password, allowing unrestricted access to your Windows 7 computer. Here's how.
A complete list of Command Prompt commands in Windows 8. Around 230 CMD commands exist in Windows 8, often incorrectly referred to as DOS commands.
A troubleshooting guide for msvcp110.dll is missing and similar errors. Don't download msvcp110.dll, fix the problem the right way.
A tutorial on how to partition a hard drive in Windows 7. You have to partition a hard drive before you can format, and eventually use, it in Windows 7.
Lost your Windows password? Here are several ways to find your lost Windows 8, 7, Vista, or XP password.
A list of the best free memory test (RAM test) software. Test your memory with a RAM test program to find even tiny problems with your computer memory.
Instructions on creating a Windows 7 System Repair Disc, a bootable disc that will give you access to Windows 7's System Recovery Options.
How to reset your Microsoft account password. This procedure may reset the password you use to login to Windows 8, Outlook.com, SkyDrive, Skype, and more.
Hardware refers to the physical parts of a computer system. Some basic computer hardware includes the motherboard, CPU, RAM, hard drive, etc.
Darik's Boot And Nuke (DBAN) is a free data wipe program for completely erasing a hard drive. Here's my complete review of DBAN.
An operating system (OS) is software that manages software and hardware in a computer. Some operating systems include Windows, Linux, and Mac OS.
Where to download Microsoft Windows updates and service packs, updated November 2014. Download Windows 8.1 Update, Windows 7 SP1, Windows Vista SP2, & more.
D3dx9_43.dll Not Found errors usually indicate a DirectX problem. Don't download d3dx9_43.dll, fix the problem the right way.
A list of the best free PDF password remover tools for Windows, plus free PDF password crackers and recovery programs for both user and owner passwords.
Step 2: Choose the correct version of the Ophcrack LiveCD for the version of Windows that you've forgotten the password to.
Offline NT Password & Registry Editor is a Windows password reset/remover tool that works nearly 100% of the time. See my complete review of ONTP&RE.
The only way to permanently fix DLL errors is by fixing the underlying cause of the issue, not by downloading DLL files. Here's how to do it.
A tutorial on opening an elevated Command Prompt in Windows 8 or 8.1. Some commands in Windows 8 require an elevated Command Prompt to be executed.
Easy instructions to completely erase a hard drive. To truly erase hard drive data forever, you may have to do more than format the drive or delete files.
Disk Management in Windows 8 can be accessed via Computer Management. Follow these simple steps to open Disk Management in Windows 8 or 8.1.
Belarc Advisor v8.4 is one of the better free system information utilities. Here's my complete review of the latest version of Belarc Advisor for Windows.
You'll need to update drivers in Windows 7 to fix hardware problems or enable new features. Follow these easy steps to update drivers in Windows 7.
Disk Management can be opened from Control Panel but it takes several clicks to get there. Try opening Disk Management via its command for a quicker start.
Basic information about Microsoft Windows 8 including release date, available editions, the Windows 8.1 update, minimum hardware requirements, and more.
DLL download sites sometimes provide easy fixes for DLL problems by allowing single DLL downloads but you should NEVER use them. Here's why...
A list of free bootable antivirus programs. A free bootable virus scanner is what you need to use to remove viruses from your PC when Windows won't start.
Having a Windows 7 password reset disk is valuable if you ever forget your password. Once created, you can use it to reset your Windows 7 password.
Reviews of the best free backup software programs, updated November 2014. Use free backup software to automatically back up your files for safe keeping.
A MOBI file is a Mobipocket eBook file. Learn how to open a .MOBI file or convert a MOBI file to another file format.
A troubleshooting guide for ntdll.dll errors, including C0000221 unknown hard errors and crashes. Don't download ntdll.dll, fix the problem the right way.
A complete list of Windows STOP codes, often called Blue Screen error codes. STOP codes display on STOP error screens - the Blue Screens of Death (BSOD).
The Advanced Startup Options menu contains diagnostic & repair tools for Windows 8 like Command Prompt, System Restore, Startup Repair, and more.
A RAR file is a Roshal Archive Compressed file. Learn how to open a .RAR file or convert a RAR file to another file format.
The shutdown command is used to shut down or restart remote computers. The shutdown command will also shut down, restart, hibernate, or log off your own PC.
A troubleshooting guide for msvcr110.dll is missing and similar errors. Don't download msvcr110.dll, fix the problem the right way.
A list of executable file extensions. Files with any of these file extensions might be able to execute a task automatically.
A file extension is the group of characters, usually 3 or 4 in length, after the period in a full file name. Here's more about file extensions...
A complete list of Control Panel command line commands for each Control Panel applet available in Windows 8, Windows 7, Windows Vista, and Windows XP.
The Startup Repair, Repair Install, and Refresh Your PC processes automatically replace damaged or missing Windows files. Here's how to do it.
Links to detailed instructions on how to update drivers in Windows, specific to your particular version of Windows.
A video converter converts one kind of video file to another. Here are several free video converter software programs and online video converters.
The ping command is used to verify that a device can communicate with another on a network. Learn more about ping and see several ping command examples.
Learn how to redirect a command's output to a file. In other words, how to save the results of running a command to a file so you can view the data later.
A complete tutorial on how to update drivers in Windows 8 or 8.1. You might update Windows 8 drivers to fix a hardware problem, enable a new feature, etc.
Tutorials on how to clear the browser cache in Firefox, IE, Chrome, and Safari. To clear the cache means to remove copies of web pages stored by the browser.
List of the latest Windows 7 drivers, last updated November 4, 2014. Download Windows 7 audio drivers, sound drivers, printer drivers, and more.
The world is not over if you forgot your Windows Vista password. Here are several things to try, from sparking your memory to hacking your PC.
Need to get a file back from the Recycle Bin? Restore Recycle Bin deleted files easily with these steps in Windows 8, 7, Vista, or XP.
An XML file is an Extensible Markup Language file. Learn how to open an .XML file or convert an XML file to another file format.
There are nearly 100 DOS commands available in MS-DOS. See a complete list of MS-DOS commands, commonly referred to as DOS commands.
List of BIOS access keys for motherboards from ASUS, MSI, abit, GIGABYTE, Intel, BIOSTAR, EVGA, and more.
Lost your Windows 8 product key? You may be able, under certain conditions, to extract your Windows 8 or Windows 8.1 product key from the registry.