Infopackets Reader Frank C. writes: " Dear Dennis, Thanks so much for helping me fix my broken start menu and task bar [which required a complete reinstall of Windows 10 32-bit] using your remote desktop support service . After you reviewed my ... laptop's hardware, I am taking your advice and wish to upgrade my system to 8GB of RAM. I understand that once I upgrade to the 8 GB of RAM, I will also need to upgrade to Windows 10 64-bit, because Windows 10 32-bit can only see a maximum of 4GB on my system. My question is: how can I upgrade from Windows 10 32-bit to Windows 10 64-bit? I downloaded ... (view more)
Infopackets Reader Mary L. writes: " Dear Dennis, I just installed Windows 10 on my laptop, but I'm having a problem with the screen fading so dark I can hardly see it. I've tried adjusting the screen brightness manually on the laptop by pressing ... the FN (function) key + up arrow key, but the screen brightness won't say - it keeps going dark automatically on its own. The screen goes dim whether or not I have the laptop plugged into the power outlet, or if it's running on battery. It also seems to happen immediately as soon as I login to Windows. I have tried changing the Power Settings (via ... (view more)
A research firm believes the free Windows 10 upgrade offer may have had a significant effect on new PC sales. It's part of an apparent pattern of users holding on to their old computers for longer. Speaking to The Register, Ranjit Atwal of Gartner ... said the company surveyed people who had taken advantage of the upgrade. It found that one in five of those questioned had decided against plans to get a new computer after trying out the new system on their existing machines. Atwal claims Microsoft did not expect that figure to be so high. (Source: theregister.co.uk ) In some ways the trend ... (view more)
Google has reported a dramatic increase in the number of requests from government agencies for information about web users. The figures show a significant global variation in how many of those requests proved justifiable. The numbers come in the ... latest installment of Google's Transparency Report in which, every six months, it gives the figures for the number of government requests for data related to user activity. The newly published figures cover the second half of 2015, as there's a lengthy delay in compiling the numbers. During that period, the total number of requests was 40,677 ... (view more)
Is there fair play amongst ransomware scammers? A particularly lazy variant of "ransomware" is making its rounds, though researchers say that paying up will never pay off. For the most part, ransomware usually involves a nasty malware program ... encrypting files on a PC, followed by a promise of a decryption key - but only if the victim pays a ransom. It would make sense that if people stopped believing this would happen, they would stop handing over the cash. Files Deleted Rather Than Encrypted Now security company Talos has spotted a variant where there's absolutely no prospect ... (view more)
Infopackets Reader Gord F. writes: " Dear Dennis, I am trying to upgrade from Windows 7 to 10 but every time I run the upgrade, it fails with an error message: '0x8007002cf - 0x4000d - The installation failed in the second_boot phase with an error ... during migrate_data operation,' then reverts back to Windows 7. I have tried upgrading 3 times but it keeps failing. I don't know what to do. Can you help? " My response: I contacted Gord and ask if he would like me to connect to his computer using my remote desktop service in order to review the problem in depth. Gord agreed. I will say that this ... (view more)
Amazon is testing video advertisements that are specifically created to meet the viewer's interests. They may prove effective, but will also raise privacy concerns. The ads will appear on non-Amazon website and, as often happens with third-party ... ads, will be based on what the system knows about the user. This often involves using cookie files stored on a user's computer to track the websites they visit and deduce their interests. Several companies already run video ads that are tailored to a user's interests, but this generally involves picking a subject and then selecting a pre- ... (view more)
Researchers say they've found a way of severely limiting the damage ransomware causes. Meanwhile California legislators are mulling over new laws specifically aimed at the tactic. Ransomware involves attackers remotely installing malicious software ... that encrypts files and makes them inaccessible without an unlock key. In many cases, this means victims can't access the data and may be unable to use the computer at all. The attackers then demand a fee to provide the unlock key. The tactic has led to controversy over whether victims should pay the fee , something critics say merely encourages ... (view more)
Facebook is to let users send messages which cannot be read by anyone other than the recipient. It's also continuing to work on a feature that allows users to send temporary messages which self-destruct. The new feature is referred to as end-to-end ... encryption . That means it's set up in a way that, even if the message is intercepted, it can't be read by anyone other than the recipient. This is done by maintaining the encryption from the sending device to the receiving device, regardless of the route it takes across the Internet. Secure Shell (SSH) , which is commonly used to connect a ... (view more)
How to Fix: 'Your Power Plan Information isn't Available' Infopackets Reader Cindy G. writes: " Dear Dennis, I am running Windows 7 Pro and I'm trying to defrag my hard drive. I'm using Piriform Defraggler and it says that it will take over a day to ... complete. That's fine - however, every time I shut my monitor off and leave the computer to do its work, it keeps going to sleep. I have gone to the Power Options in the Windows Control Panel, but all I see is a message stating that 'Your power plan information isn't available'. I am completely perplexed by this as I have a Windows 7 laptop and my ... (view more)
Infopackets Reader Sam T. writes: " Dear Dennis, I have an HP computer, which has 4 hard drive partitions: the System partition, the C drive, the factory image partition (which includes a backup of Windows), and the 'HP Tools' partition, which ... contains BIOS information in case a BIOS flash fails and I need to restore my BIOS. My question is this: I used MiniTool Partition Wizard to shrink my C drive, which then created unallocated space. Normally I can right click the unallocated space and create a new volume, however, I receive an error message that says: 'Partition Wizard cannot create a ... (view more)
Google's self-driving cars now have the ability to recognize hand signals from cyclists. They have also been programmed to err on the side of caution when considering passing a rider. The cars, which are now being tested on public roads in four ... states, use a wide range of technologies to safely maneuver the roads. These include cameras, proximity sensors, radar and lasers to detect and recognize objects around the car. The vehicles also use Google's own map database to get information on upcoming intersections and the likely traffic they'll encounter. One of the big challenges is ... (view more)
Apple is to make it easy for iPhone users to sign up as organ donors. The move is designed to recruit people who are OK with the idea of organ donation, but don't get round to filling out the necessary paperwork. The drive will involve the Health ... app in the forthcoming version 10 of the iPhone operating system. The app lets users gather together fitness and health information and already includes the option to store medical information such that it's accessible from the lock screen. That's meant to allow first responders to immediately get potentially vital information about a ... (view more)
Microsoft is giving Windows 10 one last push before the free upgrade offer ends on July 29 for Windows 7 and 8 users. It comes through a full-screen pop-up message that could well irritate those who have chosen to give the new system a miss. The new ... message will appear for some, but not all users who have yet to upgrade. It takes up the full screen and is white text on a blue background. That's a curious choice, as that color scheme is traditionally associated with the Blue Screen of Death , particularly in full-screen use. (Source: theverge.com ) Upgrade Message Includes Apology The ... (view more)
Infopackets Reader Mike R. writes: " Dear Dennis, Oftentimes when I visit Facebook.com, there are several ads on the right side of the screen such as 'The Top 10 Highest Paid Soccer Players', or 'The Funniest Billboards Ever', or something along ... those lines. Whenever these ads are displayed, the web browser locks up and I receive an error message that there is an unresponsive script on the page. I have three options: 'Debug', 'Continue', and 'Stop Script'. Why do I keep getting the 'unresponsive script' error? I use Firefox. " My response: This is a very good and frequently asked question. ... (view more)
" Dear Dennis, I work in an office on a desktop PC. If I am away from the PC, anyone in the office can hop onto my computer and access my emails because the 'offline access' to my emails feature is enabled. I have no idea how to turn it off! How can ... I prevent others from accessing my emails while I'm away? " My response: The quick and short answer is that disabling offline access to emails depends on the application or service you're using - most likely somewhere in your user account settings if you're using something like Gmail, or possibly in the "Tools -> Options" menu if you're using ... (view more)
Facebook says it will give more priority to posts from users' friends and families rather than content from businesses, news sites and other organizations. But the precise details of the changes remain unclear. The change is to the news feed, which ... is the default view when somebody logs into Facebook. Rather than show all the posts the user's friend have made in chronological order, Facebook attempts to rank them by how important and relevant the user will find them. Facebook says this is necessary because there's too much content for most users to read through in its entirety. It ... (view more)
Microsoft says it will backtrack on one of the most controversial elements of its campaign to push users towards Windows 10. It will no longer interpret clicking a close window button (the "X") as authorizing an installation of the new operating ... system. Since launching the system last year , Microsoft has been slowly ramping up its efforts to get people installing Windows 10. It's moved from the original position of having user actively seek out the system through a "pre-registration" tool to eventually reaching the point when Windows 10 was considered a recommended ... (view more)
Microsoft has agreed to pay $10,000 to a woman who says her computer was wrecked by an unwanted Windows 10 upgrade. The terms of the payment means there's no guarantee others in the same situation would prevail in court. Teri Goldstein says her ... computer automatically downloaded and attempted to install Windows 10 just days after it was released last July. If that's the case, that timeline certainly suggests some form of technical mistake as its only in recent months that Microsoft has stepped up its program of pushing the system out as an automatic update to many users. Broken ... (view more)
Infopackets Reader 'Jackie' writes: " Dear Dennis, I just read the article you wrote about ' How to Fix: Windows 10 Black Border (Shrinking Screen) ' and have a similar question. I just upgraded to Windows 10; I have an HP laptop and have connected ... it to my big flat screen TV. The problem is that as soon as I plug in my HDMI cable to connect the HDTV to the laptop, the laptop displays black borders on the sides of the screen. How can I fix that? " My response: The reason you have black borders on the side of the screen whenever you connect your HDTV through the HDMI cable is because the ... (view more)
Infopackets Reader Tom M. writes: " Dear Dennis, I am running Windows 10 that came with my computer. I decided I want to do a clean install of Windows 10 while I'm still logged into my Windows 10 desktop - this is possible if you run setup.exe form ... the disc, then select "Custom" during the installation procedure. I used the Media Creation Tool (from Microsoft) to download Windows 10 x64 10586, and I burned that to disc. However, when I try to run setup.exe from the disc, it gives me an error that says: 'Use the other installation disc that says 64-bit. When you insert it, Windows setup will ... (view more)
A newly-publicized take on a long-running scam involves on-screen messages that falsely appear to be from a user's Internet service provider. It's a trick with a variety of ways to profit from the customer. For many years, scammers have been calling ... people on the telephone claiming to work for Microsoft or other computer companies, saying the person receiving the call has a virus. The scammer will then usually try to get the victim to pay for bogus tech support services. While most people realize it's a scam, the idea is to call enough people so that even a small percentage of ... (view more)
Users of remote access tool GoToMyPC will need to reset their passwords as a security measure after an attack by hackers. Although creators Citrix describe it as a "very sophisticated" attack, it's simply another case of hackers targeting people who ... continue to re-use passwords on multiple sites. GoToMyPC is a tool that lets users remotely access their PC or Mac using another computer or mobile device. As with most such tools, the computer being remotely accessed must be switched on and connected to the Internet. The actual system that powers GoToMyPC, and its database of login ... (view more)
Microsoft claims its Edge browser uses far less battery power on laptops than rivals such as Google Chrome. The claims come as it publishes details of further tweaks to the browser's power demands. To back up its claims, Microsoft has released the ... results of tests it carried out using its own Surface Book computer, along with data gathered remotely from Windows 10 computers. As with any such non-independent tests, it's always worth remembering that not only could the setup of the tests be designed in a way that favors Microsoft, but there's no way of knowing that Microsoft hasn ... (view more)
Infopackets Reader Denise N. writes: " Dear Dennis, Thanks for your article on ' How to Fix: Increase Taskbar Thumbnail Preview in Windows 7, 8, 10 '. I have a similar question. I recently purchased a new PC with Windows 10, and the monitor ... resolution is 1920 x 1080. The problem is that when I go to My Pictures folder, the picture thumbnails are too small and I have a hard time figuring out what is in the picture thumbnail preview. I have tried setting the icons to 'Large', which is a bit too small, but when I set it to 'Extra Large' it is way too big. How can I make the picture thumbnails in ... (view more)
How to Fix: Increase Taskbar Thumbnail Preview in Windows 7, 8, 10 Infopackets Reader Tim R. writes: " Dear Dennis, I just purchased a brand new laptop with Windows 10 and it has a 4K screen resolution of 3840 X 2160 (exactly twice the resolution of ... Blu-Ray, at 1920 x 1080). The problem is that when I have many programs open on my task bar, I cannot see the taskbar thumbnail preview - it is far too small to read. Therefore I have a very difficult time figuring out which thumbnail belongs to which program I have open. Is there any way I can increase the taskbar thumbnail preview so it is ... (view more)
A man once dubbed the "Spam King" has been jailed for two and a half years. However, Sanford Wallace's sentence is for emails which were fraudulent rather than simply unwanted. Wallace first came to infamy by sending unwanted faxes before it became ... illegal. In the late 1990s he became one of the first mass spammers and was sued by several Internet providers, including AOL. He was so open about sending spam, that at one point he even got the attention of lawyers at Hormel Foods (the company which makes Spam - a meat product), in which they claimed Wallace was breaching trademark ... (view more)
An appeals court has upheld rules on net neutrality that stop broadband providers blocking or slowing web traffic. The legal battles will likely continue, but this week's verdict is a big blow to those arguing to block the rules. Net neutrality is ... the principle of treating all Internet traffic in the same way with the only exception being illegal content. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has tried several times to bring in rules to enforce the principle, with bans on carriers deliberately slowing or blocking some types of traffic (such as streaming video) or taking payments ... (view more)
Microsoft has agreed to buy business networking site LinkedIn for $26 billion. Analysts are less than certain about what it plans to do with the site. For those not familiar, LinkedIn works a little like Facebook but is designed primarily for ... business rather than personal contacts. It has a reported 100 million active users that access the site at least once a month. That compares to reports of 1.65 billion active users for Facebook. One of the most popular uses is to find potential clients or employers through mutual contacts. It's also possible to "endorse" a contact for ... (view more)
Infopackets Reader William O. writes: " Dear Dennis, I have a Samsung smartphone with a 16 GB SD card, which I use to store all my pictures and videos. I have taken the SD card out of my smartphone and placed it into an SD card reader, so I can copy ... files over to my computer. I get about 13% through the transfer and then I get an error message that says: 'Error 0x8007045D: the request could not be performed because of an I/O device error.' I then have the option to skip the current file; when I click that, the transfer resumes, but then it says it will take over 1 day to complete the transfer ... (view more)
Infopackets Top Windows 10 FAQs
How to Upgrade from Windows 10 32-bit to 64-bit
How to Fix: Windows 10 Antivirus Missing, Not Compatible
How to Fix: Windows 10 Display Shifted; Screen Fuzzy
How to Upgrade Windows 7, 8 32-bit to Windows 10 64-bit
to Downgrade from Windows 10
- How to Fix: Windows 10 Upgrade Failed Error C1900208
- How to Fix: Windows 10 Upgrade Failed Error 80240020
- Can I Cancel my Windows 10 Reservation and Reserve Later?
- How to Clean Install Windows 10 using Windows 7, 8 License
- Will Windows 10 Install Automatically?
- Windows 10 Upgrade: Do I have to Reinstall Programs?
- Windows 10 Upgrade: Can I choose 32-bit or 64-bit?
- Which Version of Windows 10 Will I Get (Home or Pro)?
- How to Reserve Windows 10 Upgrade (Free)
- How to Fix: CPU Not Compatible with Windows 10 Error
- Windows 10 Upgrade: Can I keep my Old Windows Install?
- How to Cancel Windows 10 Reservation (Properly)
- Download Windows 10 .ISO (DVD) for Clean Install?
- Microsoft: Windows 10 Will Be The Last Version
- Does Windows 10 require the CPU to support PAE?
- Windows 10: Can I Upgrade or do I need a Clean Install?
Click here for more Windows 10 articles.