Computer Problem Help
Introduction and General Tips
You've already got enough trouble in your life, you don't need a problem computer.
But rather than taking an ax to your computer, let's try to fix it.
The following procedures generally apply to all Windows 95/98/Me/Win NT/2000/XP computers. When a solution only applies to a specific version of Windows, we will try to note this in the answer.
Before you start researching your specific problem in the following pages, please take a minute to review the following information:
A couple of quick InfoHQ Axioms on Computer Problems:
1. Most crashing problems are caused by software errors. If you computer operated normally for awhile, and then started crashing, chances are good you have a software problem.
2. You have a pretty good chance of having a hardware problem if:
a. Your computer is in a bad environment (excess heat/moisture or is near other electronic components that cause magnetic interference e.g. unshielded stereo speakers, machinery, older TVs, etc.)
b. You unplug and plug accessories into your computer without first shutting off the power to your computer. This has a high likelihood of causing a short to your system as you could be charged with static electrically.
c. You have been working inside your computer. Chances are something is connected wrong or you inadvertently knocked a cable loose.
d. You do not use surge protectors or UPS to protect your computer from unusual electrical events e.g. storms, power surges, outages etc.
Note: While it is possible for a hardware error to cause software errors, it is very unusual for software problems to cause unrepairable hardware problems.
A few quick cautions before we continue:
1. Our Advice * If you are unsure on how to perform the procedures in this article, we suggest you enlist a competent friend or find a reliable computer repair shop.
We suggest you read all the articles in this section that seem related to your problem. Many different ideas and solutions are presented in each topic.
We do not assume any liability for what you do, or not do, as a result of articles on this page.*
2. * Caution: Working Inside Your Computer* Many of the procedures described below if not performed correctly, can cause additional problems or short your computer.
All power should be turned off prior to opening a computer's case, to avoid the possibility of electrical shock hazards.
You should be grounded whenever you are working inside a computer or you may short out your motherboard or other computer components. Grounding is ideally accomplished with a grounding wrist strap or a less preferred method is to touch your metal computer case before touching anything inside the case.
This article resulted from the many questions we have received from our readers. Find your computer's condition in the Index on the next page and click on it to begin fixing your problem.