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Question and Answer
Help rescue me from PC hell! I've used a Mac at home for years and rarely have a problem. But my new job requires me to use a PC. For the first couple of months the Dell Inspiron notebook with Windows 8 was great. However, last week it started to run very slow and freeze up daily. I use Chrome and that is super slow too. So I installed two popular apps for anti-virus and malware detection. Both programs reported my notebook as "CLEAN". Today Dell support is suggesting I reinstall Windows. But the tech warned me there's a risk of losing important files, docs and photos when reinstalling Windows. Is there an "all-in-one" program that that will allow me to thoroughly test and hopefully restore my notebook without having to reinstall Windows? I'm looking for something that's easy to use, yet powerful.
– Frankie P., Reno, NV
Good question. Yes, you're right. The task of reinstalling Windows can be complicated and time consuming. The easiest and safest option is to run a free system scan using a popular program that TouchStoneSoftware has endorsed for years called Reimage. Within minutes Reimage will safely detect and fix all of the serious errors on your PC. If there's a virus or malware or spyware on your notebook, it will be detected and removed. Reimage will detect and repair corrupted files. Plus, Reimage's patented technology reverses any damage already done to the Windows OS with a full database of replacement files.

» Click here for more information on Reimage
I’m a longtime customer of TouchStoneSoftware and I was wondering if you can recommend a good program that will allow me to run tests on my computer. Tests that can show my CPU and RAM performance, for example.
– Dana S., Annapolis, MD

Thanks Dana. Actually we do know of such a program. NovaBench is a free all-in-one benchmark program. It allows you to run tests on your systems CPU and RAM as well as the computers graphics. You can also compare your system score to others who have run the program. Then you can share your results on your profile and on social networks. NovaBench is also 100% free, and is available for Windows and Mac OS X.

» Download NovaBench

I use Mozilla Firefox and when I try to download a file, it sends the file to the DOWNLOADS folder on my C: drive. How can I change where the files are saved to?
– Lindsey C., Shawnee Mission, KS

There are a couple of different ways to change where the files are being saved. The first way is to have the browser ask you on every download where you want to save the file. You can do this by clicking on TOOLS in Firefox and then choose OPTIONS. Then click on the GENERAL tab, and click the radio button next to ALWAYS ASK ME WHERE TO SAVE FILES. Now you will be prompted to provide a location every time you download a file. The second way is change the default location for saved files, so that every time you download a file it will be saved to the location you choose automatically. To do this, you want to click on TOOLS in Firefox and then choose OPTIONS. Then click on the GENERAL tab, and click the radio button next to SAVE FILES TO. You then need to click on BROWSE and navigate to the location you want the files saved to. Files will now be saved to this location by default.

Driver Tip: Printer Drivers Can Be Tricky

Have you ever installed a printer driver and your printer stopped working? Or the new driver just doesn’t seem to install at all? With some printers the driver is pretty straightforward. It’s simply click and install. However, with other printer drivers the process can be a little more involved. If you are running into issues installing your printer driver, we suggest that you first uninstall the old drivers first. Then install the new ones. This should prevent any further issues and allow your printer to work properly. The old driver can be uninstalled by opening your Control Panel, and clicking on the Devices and Printers section. Right click on the printer, and choose PROPERTIES. Then click on the DRIVER tab, and choose UNINSTALL. You may be asked at this point if you want to keep the driver, say NO. Once that has completed uninstalling, you can install the new driver

PC Performance Tip: Make Windows 8 Faster

Windows 8, like any operating system can get bogged down and become slow. Here are some tips to help you speedup Windows 8 for better performance.

Pinpoint Application:

There are always some programs that tend to slowdown your system. Windows 8 task manager is competent enough that you can pin point such applications that are slowing down your computer.

Manage Startup Programs:

Windows 8 task manager also gives you access to disable such applications, which are launched at startup. At times, these programs can slowdown your system

Disable Animations:

Windows 8 is best at animations and effects. At times, these animations affect system performance while you are working. Disable these animations and improve Windows speed by:

» Perform a PC performance scan now!

BIOS Tip – State After Power Fail

We get asked a lot of questions about what each setting in the BIOS does. Every so often we will review a setting in this space and explain what the setting does. In this issue we are going to discuss the setting State After Power Fail.

The setting State After Power Fail deals with the state of your system after the system loses power. In some systems it may be called Power On After Power Fail. In that case the setting is self explanatory. If you set Power On After Power Fail to YES, then when power resumes the system will power on. If you set it to NO, then the system will remain off when power resumes.

However with State After Power Fail, you will have several options.

The first option is a setting called Stay Off. This setting, when selected, will keep your computer off when the power is restored.

The second option is a setting called Last State. This setting, when selected, will put your system in the state it was in when power was lost.

The third option is a setting called Power On. This setting, when selected, will turn the system on when power is restored. If you have a setting that you would like explained in a future newsletter, please let us know.

» Perform a BIOS scan now!

Tech Tip

Windows 8 – Launch Apps Right From The Desktop

Windows 8 doesn't provide any obvious way to launch apps straight from the desktop, but this is actually surprisingly easy to set up. Right-click on an empty part of your desktop, select New > Shortcut, and type Explorer Shell: AppsFolder in the "Location" box. Click Next, enter a name - "All Programs", for instance - and click Finish. Double-clicking that shortcut will open a folder listing all your installed programs, including the apps, and you can launch whatever you like.

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Quote of the Month
"Failure doesn't kill you... it increases your desire to make something happen."

- Kevin Costner

Sites of the Month

Fun Sites
Enter trivia contests, join the fun trivia community, and challenge other players.
Useful Site
A handy library of PDF user manuals for almost anything.

Did You Know?

Apple iPad’s retina display is actually manufactured by Samsung.

Vocab Test

Slang for a person who only goes online on the weekends or holidays.

Browser Add-On

Live Scores, News and real time Notifications for your favorite sports - NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL, NCAA, Soccer, tennis and more.

SmartPhone App

One app, all of your messaging. IM+ supports all major IM services.

Twitter Tip

Curate content you tweet from a wide variety of sources to keep your followers interested.

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.

  • 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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