Windows Tips

Mon
08
Jan
Dennis Faas's picture

Can Malware (Spectre, Meltdown) Spy After Reboot?

In regard to last week's article on the Spectre and Meltdown CPU exploits, which affects 100% of all computers made since 1995, user 'rep' had the following question to ask: " Dear Dennis, [Being that this is a hardware exploit], am I right in ... thinking that any passwords, etc, which are stored in the CPU's memory are lost when the computer is shut down? If so, could I simply shut off the computer and reload it every time I want to use Internet banking and would that keep me safe from these exploits? " My response: I posted my original response in the comments section of Friday's article, but ... (view more)

Fri
05
Jan
Dennis Faas's picture

Spectre and Meltdown Exploits - What You Need to Know

Infopackets Reader Steve P. writes: " Dear Dennis, There has been a whirlwind of news on the Internet regarding the 'Spectre' and 'Meltdown' exploits that affect all microprocessors (CPUs) from 1995 and on. I am afraid my computer is at risk but I ... don't understand all the tecno-talk. Should I be worried? " My response: The short answer is: yes and no, mostly no (once patches are released). At the end of this article I'll offer advice on what you can do to stay protected. What does the Spectre and Meltdown Exploit Mean? I have been following the news for the last few days and here is what I ... (view more)

Fri
29
Dec
Dennis Faas's picture

How to Fix: Run Batch Script as Administrator (Without Password)

Infopackets Reader Barry S. writes: " Dear Dennis, I read with interest your article on how to shut down Mozilla Thunderbird gracefully using a series of 'taskkill' commands. The issue I have is that Thunderbird eats an enormous amount of memory if ... I leave it running over a period of 24 hours or more. When I try and send an email, the words in the email window (as I'm typing them) come out in spurts. This drives me crazy as I am a fairly quick typist. I tried setting up a batch script to run (using Task Scheduler) to gracefully close Thunderbird and restart it every 24 hours, but for some ... (view more)

Mon
18
Dec
Dennis Faas's picture

Windows 7 Users: Security Updates End January 2020

Infopackets Reader Jerry K. writes: " Dear Dennis, I've read that the Windows 10 free upgrade ends at the end of this year. I have Windows 7 on my main PC and and my wife has Windows 8 on her laptop. In all, I find Windows 7 easier to use. Can we ... continue using Windows 7 and 8 indefinitely? Can you give me a few good reasons why I should get the free upgrade? " My response: I have been receiving a lot of questions lately similar to this, so I will try and answer this as best I can. First let's address your first question: no, you cannot continue using Windows 7 or 8 indefinitely (at least, ... (view more)

Fri
15
Dec
Dennis Faas's picture

Step-by-Step: Fix 'I/O Device Error' (Hard Drive, SD Card, etc)

Infopackets Reader Greeshma N. writes: " Dear Dennis, I have an external hard drive that has worked fine for years. Now the hard drive won't show up in My Computer, though it shows up under Devices and Printers - very strange! I have tried ... initializing the disk from Disk Management, but it won't format and I keep getting ' The request could not be performed because of an I/O device error '. I have tried cleaning up the disk by deleting items but it shows 0 bytes free and keeps giving me 'The request could not be performed because of an I/O device error'. What can I do to make this work? " My ... (view more)

Mon
11
Dec
Dennis Faas's picture

How to Fix: Can't Delete Restore Points (C Drive Full)

Infopackets Reader Bill L. writes: " Dear Dennis, I am a long time reader of Infopackets, and have used several of your articles to help fix problems for myself or friends. I have a similar problem mentioned in one of your previously written ... articles, where my C drive has magically filled up to almost completely full (with only 5.8GB free) and I am not able to find where the missing space went. I have examined directory on my system and it appears that 244 GB of available space is unaccounted for. I am a retired computer engineer, however my expertise was in large system development, and not ... (view more)

Fri
08
Dec
Dennis Faas's picture

How to Fix: Change Firefox Quantum Black Tabs to Gray

Infopackets Reader Jean B. writes: " Dear Dennis, I hope this email finds you well. My system recently upgraded to the newest version of Firefox Quantum (version 57), and so far it is much faster than the previous versions. One of the annoying ... features of the Firefox upgrade is the black tabs (black background) near the top of the page. Previously the Firefox tabs were gray in color and I prefer that to the black tabs. I have looked in the program preferences but can't find a way to change it back. Can you help? " My response: I am also not a fan of the black tabs in Firefox and am in the ... (view more)

Mon
04
Dec
Dennis Faas's picture

How to Fix: Gracefully Close Thunderbird using Batch Script

Infopackets Reader Steve T. writes: " Dear Dennis, I am trying to backup my Mozilla Thunderbird emails using an automated backup schedule. The problem is that Thunderbird is always running on my computer and there does not seem to be a way to ... gracefully close the program so that the backup can start. Without closing the Thunderbird before the backup, I run the risk of having corrupt backups due to files being in use. Can you please tell me if there is a way that I can gracefully close Thunderbird (without terminating the process unexpectedly) so that I can complete my automated backups? " My ... (view more)

Mon
27
Nov
Dennis Faas's picture

How to Fix: FileZilla Server 'Failed to Retrieve Directory Listing' Error

Infopackets Reader Carl S. writes: " Dear Dennis, I am frequently on the road with my laptop and need to access my files at home on the PC. I have installed FileZilla FTP Server (version 0.9.60 beta) and it works fine at home but when I am remote, I ... get the error: ' failed to receive directory listing ', and then it disconnects. I am currently using Port 21 to host the FTP and have added it to my firewall, but I don't understand why FileZilla server can't retrieve the directory listing by remote. Can you help? " My response: I asked Carl if he would like me to connect to his system using my ... (view more)

Mon
20
Nov
Dennis Faas's picture

How to Fix: Disable Google Drive / Backup and Sync Popups when Inserting USB, DVD, or Smartphone

Infopackets Reader Jenna R. writes: " Dear Dennis, I installed Google Drive on my system a while ago but it stopped working; I reinstalled the program only to find that Google Drive has been replaced with ' Google Backup and Sync '. Now when I plug ... in a USB thumb drive to my computer, I see this annoying popup message in the lower right hand corner of my screen asking if I want to backup my photos. This also happens when I plug in my smartphone. Despite clicking ' Remember my choice for this device' and 'Not now' (pic), it never remembers that I don't want to use this feature. It's incredibly ... (view more)

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