If your start button disappeared, I have the fastest possible fix for you. It works with Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 10, and server versions, in addition to versions of Windows you shouldn’t be running anymore.
When I first installed it, I thought it was pretty pointless to try to optimize Windows 10. Of course, I installed it from scratch on a computer with an SSD and 16 gigs of RAM. Then I upgraded a couple of computers from Windows 7 to Windows 10, and I started to see why some people might not like Windows 10 all that much.
Upgraded systems almost always run slow, but I’d forgotten how much slower. And while you didn’t have to do much to Windows 7 to make it fast–that’s one reason people liked it–I find some Windows 10 optimization seems to be necessary. But don’t visit dodgy sites like downloadmoreram.com. Follow these tips for things that actually work.
Sometimes you need to check your network speed in Windows 10. The information buried a bit but you can get there in about three clicks. When you need to know the raw specs of your network connection, here’s how to do it. Microsoft seems to have moved this recently, sometime in 2018, so I’ve updated this for the current builds of Windows 10.
Depending on your network driver, it was sometimes easier to get this in previous versions of Windows. Sometimes all you had to do was hover over your network connection icon. But this method also works in Windows 7, even if you have a featureless network driver.
What’s the best free antivirus? I have an answer that may surprise you. I also have a supplement that may surprise you. And I have a third supplement you already have but probably never heard of.
Keep something in mind. I don’t like using words like “good” and “best” in the same sentence as antivirus software. Imagine a college graduating class whose valedictorian is Chris Farley’s character from the movie Tommy Boy. What you want from your antivirus software is something that doesn’t do a lot of damage.
Sometimes a Windows computer is so broken that you have to run system restore from the command prompt. If you’re reading this, I don’t have to elaborate. This works in Windows 7, Windows 10, and any other recent version.
And when a system is that broken, you can expect to run into a couple of snags. Maybe you can’t even get a command prompt. Or maybe you got a command prompt but the executable file is buried. Here’s how to solve those two problems. Read more
Ars Technica made a bit of a splash this week with this provocative headline. This is real.
The article gives the usual advice, like not opening e-mail from strangers, not clicking attachments from strangers, and not visiting dodgy websites. That’s all good advice, as is staying off torrent and other file sharing sites, but even all that is not enough.
I’ve been using Dataram’s excellent free ramdisk program for several months now and highly recommend it. On some machines, I install Firefox to the ramdisk and move the profile there. But the biggest benefit comes from putting the profile (not just the browser cache) in the ramdisk. Storing the profile in a high-speed, near-zero-latency ramdisk solves virtually every Firefox performance issue. Here’s how to set up a Firefox ramdisk profile in Windows. Read more
After years of workarounds, and even sometimes denying there was a problem, Mozilla has identified a fix for Firefox’s sometimes out-of-control memory usage.
Let’s say you’ve just bought a used PC with a short (typically less than 2 weeks) warranty. Or a new PC that’s not the brand you know and trust. Maybe you’ve built a new PC and you want to make sure it’s going to hold up before you start using it every day. Or you have a new server, and you want to make sure it’s going to hold up under heavy loads. What should you do to stress test computer hardware (or burn in computer hardware) like that?
Do what overclockers do.
If your computer brings up a window every time you click on a program’s icon asking what you want to open it with, there’s a not-so-obvious way out.
Ve hev vays to get a command prompt when executable files won’t run normally. And from there, you can run anything you want, old school DOS-style.