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Driver Tip: How to Disable Digital Driver Signing

Have you ever tried to install some device drivers on Windows 7 and received a warning message that those drivers should be digitally signed? You can disable this driver signing warning message in Windows 7 with a simple procedure.

Go to the Start menu and type cmd.exe in the Search Bar. Right click on cmd.exe and choose Run as Administrator.

If you have the UAC turned on, choose Yes to proceed. Otherwise, you should see the command windows opened already. In the shell window, copy and paste the following and hit Enter.

bcdedit.exe -set loadoptions DDISABLE_INTEGRITY_CHECKS
bcdedit.exe -set TESTSIGNING ON

You'll get a confirmation that the operation completed successfully. Restart your computer for the changes to take effect. You've just disabled digital driver signing in Windows 7.

BIOS Tip: Unknown Flash Type

One of the more common issues that comes up when trying to upgrade your BIOS is the error message "Unknown Flash Type."

There are several causes for this error. The most common is that there is write protection on the existing BIOS. To verify if this is the case, enter your CMOS setup and check for a setting labeled BIOS GUARDIAN or FLASH BIOS PROTECTION. This should be under the screen entitled ADVANCE BIOS FEATURES. If you are able to locate one of those settings, set it to disabled. Then save and exit your CMOS settings by choosing F10.

Another possibility is that you are using an old flash utility. Old flash utilities can produce and UNKNOWN FLASH TYPE error as well. You can replace the existing flash utilities with a newer one from our site here.

» Perform a BIOS scan now!

Registry Tip: Speed up Shut Down Time in Windows 7

Some Windows 7 users have complained that the operating system can take a while to shut down. This is due to some services that are running and are taking some time to shut down. Windows will try to shut them down, but it can cause a delay. To make the shutdown faster, follow this procedure:

Start regedit and navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control. Find the WaitToKillServiceTimeout key on the right, double-click to edit and change it from the default 12000 (12 seconds) to 2000 (2 seconds) or above.

This setting tells Windows how long to wait before prompting you that a service is not responding to the shut down request. This may help speed up your shutdown if you have any such services running.

» Perform a registry scan now!

Question and Answer
I've recently downgraded my laptop from Windows 7 to Windows XP, and I'm having a hard time finding the drivers that I need. What can I do?
- Karen S., Milwaukee, WI
If you've downgraded your laptop from Microsoft Windows Vista or Windows 7 to XP you'll almost immediately notice how difficult it can be to find the drivers for the hardware devices for your laptop. When a laptop or any computer manufacturer releases their product with Vista or 7 they will not worry about supporting past operating systems such as Windows XP unless that same model is available for Windows XP.

I have Windows 7, 64-bit installed on my computer. When I use Internet Explorer, it opens the 64-bit version . How can I use the 32-bit version, which I cannot find on my system?
- Michael J., Dayton, OH
Both the 32-bit and the 64-bit version of IE8 get installed with Win7. Only the 64-bit version is identified as such. Both should be showing in Start, All Programs as Internet Explorer and Internet Explorer (64-bit). If both versions do not show there you can create a shortcut to the 32-bit version on the Desktop.

Right Click on your Desktop and choose NEW > SHORTCUT, then use this in the Target: box: "C:\Program Files (x86)\Internet Explorer\iexplore.exe".

Whenever I open up my browser it opens up in a smaller window and I always have to maximize it. How can I get my browser to open to its maximum size automatically?
- Marie A., Trenton, NJ
Open your browser and maximize to the full page (click on square in upper right corner) then hold down the Control/Shift key and click on the X in the upper right corner. After than the program should open to its maximum size.

Quote of the Month
"The Internet is the most important single development in the history of human communication since the invention of call waiting."

- Dave Barry

Sites of the Month

Fun Sites
Got a song stuck in your head? This site has the solution. Just head on over there, and they'll pick a random tune to wipe that song from your mind. Unfortunately, it'll be just as catchy.

Techie Sites
A Daily weblog on software and personal productivity recommends downloads, web sites and shortcuts that help you work smarter and save time.

Stat of the Month
As of September 1st, 2010, Windows 7 has overtaken Windows Vista for the first time in total market share worldwide.

In August, Windows 7 took 19.4% total market share, compared to Vista's 17.7% worldwide.

XP continues to dominate the global market with 55.4%

Windows 7 Shortcuts

Cycle between the Windows Gadgets on your screen.

Win+Up arrow
Maximize the active window.

Win+Down arrow
Minimize the window/Restore the window if it's maximized.

Toggles the preview pane in Windows Explorer.

Browser Add-On

Firefox Tiny URL Generator
This great add-on for Firefox allows you to simply click a small icon in the bottom corner of the Firefox window to quickly generate a small URL for the page you're looking at. This is really useful if you find yourself sharing long URL links often.

Windows 7 Gadget

Toggle Hidden Files
This gadget is made up of a single button. Click it and it will toggle the visibility of hidden files in windows explorer, as well as protected system files and file extensions. With this at hand you no longer need to go through file options to find those hidden files.

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