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Question and Answer
Our Dell notebook is shared by the entire family. Whether it be surfing the Internet or downloading and running software, it gets used a lot. It's a great notebook, but recently I noticed some unusual behavior. First, our notebook is noticeably slow at times and Windows 7 actually locked up to the point we had to reboot it. Then we received a weird virus warning that our anti-virus software failed to detect. Then today a "corrupt file" message popped up on my screen. Can you suggest a safe and simple fix? Thank you in advance.
– Paul F. San Jose, CA
Thanks for the question Paul. You have quite a bit going on here. However, what you've described isn't uncommon for a PC that gets used a lot. Issues like Windows shutting down, freezing up or simply becoming sluggish, and corrupt files can be caused by a system crash. Or perhaps something went wrong while a file was being downloaded or saved. Finally, there is always the threat of being infected with a hidden virus, malware, or spyware, especially if you are on the Web and downloading software.

Our best advice is a simple yet powerful PC and Windows repair application called Reimage. Within minutes, Reimage's free scan will diagnose the overall health of your computer by detecting any Windows errors and will locate corrupt or missing files. Reimage will even detect and remove stubborn or hidden viruses, malware, or spyware on your system. Reimage's patented repair process removes and replaces damaged files done to your Windows OS by actually replacing corrupt and missing files with new Windows files and components from their continuously updated online database. Give Reimage a try today and let us know how you make out.

» Download Reimage
I noticed recently that my Facebook photo comes up on any emails I send from Is there a way I can prevent that photo from coming up in my emails?
– Diane H., Sacramento, CA can link into your Facebook and Twitter accounts. Once connected, will use your Facebook profile picture to help people identify you in emails. Microsoft allows other Facebook users on to send you friend requests. If you'd rather keep your picture private, and not allow people to send you friend requests through you can change the third party network settings in To do this, sign into your account, select Settings, and then select More Mail Settings. Then, scroll down to Reading email, and select Content From Third Party Networks. Under Showing Public Content, select the Don't Show Public Content From Third Party Networks radio button. Those who want to alter their Facebook Privacy settings will need to login to Facebook and go to the Privacy Settings page. Click Edit Settings, locate Who Can Look You Up Using the Email Address or Phone Number You Provided, and select Friends Of Friends and click Done. This way will not have access to your Facebook photo or other information.
While I was looking for a new router to buy I noticed something called a Dual Band Router. What is that? And what are the benefits of a Dual Band Router?
– Michael R., Portland, ME
Most Wi-Fi networks operate in the 2.4 GHz frequency, which means you will be competing with your neighbors for signal quality. The 2.4 GHz frequency may also experience radio interference from common household electronics, such as microwaves, landline phones, baby monitors, mobile phones, and Bluetooth signals. A Dual-Band Router can be broadcast in both the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz frequencies, essentially creating two wireless networks. The 5 GHz frequency is typically relatively free of interference , so it's ideal for things that require high Wi-Fi speeds, such as streaming video and audio, downloading music, and playing games.

PC Performance Tip: Adding Program to Desktop Context Menu

Do you have a program that you use frequently but you don't want another icon cluttering up your desktop? Here's a neat little registry tweak to add any program you want to your context menu for your desktop. This way when you Right Click to bring up the context menu, that application will be there.

For these instructions we'll use Notepad, but you'll be able to add any application you want.

The first thing you'll want to do is open up regedit.exe through the Start Menu search or run box, and then browse down to the following key:


Next, you'll want to create a new key underneath the shell key, the name of which is exactly what is going to show up on the desktop menu. Right-click on the "shell" key, and then choose New \ Key from the menu. Give the new key the name that you want to show up on the desktop context menu. For this example we'll be using Notepad.

Next you'll need to create the command key that will actually hold the command used to launch the application. Right-click on the new Notepad key, and then choose New \ Key from the menu. Give this key the name "command" in lowercase.

To complete this step you'll need the full path to the application that you want to launch. To get the full path, hold the SHIFT key while Right Clicking on the program icon (in this case, the Notepad icon) and then choose COPY AS PATH.

Now click on "command" on the left side, and then double-click on the (Default) key in the right side to edit the string value. Paste in the full path to the executable that you got from the "Copy as Path" step above, or you can put in the full path yourself if you'd like.

Now right-clicking on the desktop will produce the new menu item. Using this menu item should launch Notepad.

» Download RegistryWizard Now! (New version now available)

BIOS Tip – Securing Your BIOS

Many people do not know it, but your computers BIOS can become infected with malware. The most famous was the Chernobyl virus back in the 90's. These days, there is less of a chance of this happening, but it is much better to be safe than sorry. There is a way to make sure your BIOS is secure and to protect it from any potential malware infections.

The first step in your safety plan is to protect your BIOS with an administrator password that must be entered before a BIOS update can occur. Boot or reboot your PC. While it's starting up, repeatedly tap the ‘DEL,' ‘F1,' or whatever other special key is required to launch the BIOS. This information is typically displayed onscreen during the boot process, although it might not be immediately obvious. This text, for instance, appears verbatim at the bottom of the screen for just a few moments after we start our computer.

Once your BIOS setup menu is loaded, look for the menu item that enables you to set up a password. There might be more than one. It may be listed as SET SUPERVISOR PASSWORD or SECURITY OPTIONS.

Select the menu item for creating the password and enter a password (usually twice, to verify what you typed the first time). If you think you might have trouble remembering the password later, as you'll access your BIOS infrequently, make sure you write it down somewhere.

Save your BIOS changes and your computer will reboot. From here on out you'll need to enter this password before any changes can be made to your BIOS, ensuring malware will have a harder time harming your PC.

» Perform a BIOS scan now!

Tech Tip

Looking for a Program Tells You All You Need To Know About Your PC? MyPC Plus is that program!
MyPC Plus is an All-In-One informative program that tells you pretty much everything you need to know about your system. It provides all of your system and hardware information, including Operating System version, service pack version, installed browsers, Direct X Version, CPU information, BIOS information, and much more. MyPC Plus also contains Fast Cleaner which removes redundant files and Secure Delete which overwrites and deletes files. Best of all, MyPC Plus is FREE!

» Download MyPC Plus here

TouchStoneSoftware UndeletePlus RegistryWizard BIOSAgentPlus
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Quote of the Month
"Technology is nothing. What's important is that you have a faith in people, that they're basically good and smart, and if you give them tools, they'll do wonderful things with them."

– Steve Jobs

Sites of the Month

Fun Sites
Let's Loop
Helps to connect music fans so that everyone can discover, share & listen to music together. Listen to millions of songs, albums & playlists from multiple sites.

Useful Site
No Excuse List
An exhaustive page of links to skills you can learn, including art, computer programming, cooking, DIY, and much more.

Stat of the Month

Global Smartphone Unit Shipment Forecast
(Billions of Units)

Global Smartphone Unit Shipment Forecast
Source: IHS Research
July 2013

Vocab Test


The process of performing a Google search for one's own name.

Browser Add-On


A Twitter extension that allows you to follow your timelines and interact with your Twitter account.

SmartPhone App


RunKeeper makes tracking your workouts fun, social, and easy to understand so that you can improve the quality of your fitness.

  Twitter Tip

Share tweets that add value to your stream. Adding value to the stream is how to stand out in Twitter.

iPhone App



iOptimizer is the ultimate application for getting to know your iPhone, iPad or iPod better. iOptimizer monitors the performance of your device, so that you can configure it for optimal use. It will also help you find out everything about your iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch both on the system and on the user level. iOptimizer is powerful, intuitive, and extremely easy to set up and use.

(New Version - May 2013)
  • iPad Support
  • Improved 'Activity' Section
  • Improved 'Processes' Section
  • Improved 'Battery' Section
  • Improved 'System' Information
  • Improved 'Network' Section
Best of all — It's FREE!

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