It takes a special person indeed to put up with chasing me around the city to pick up my laptop. They delivered it back to me in Cherrybrook at the end of the day, all fixed! Thank you so much boys.
Mona, Camden

mobilegeeks Blog



Hello lovely people :)

This time, out computer repairs blog is about bringing misplaced off-screen windows back to your desktop.

Have you ever hooked your laptop up to a secondary monitor and forgotten to move the window back to the primary desktop before you have disconnected.

You can still see the application in the taskbar and the app is still running, you just cannot see it on the screen – because the app thinks it is still running (and showing) on the second screen. Nothing seems to help, you try to right click on it, use move but the window does not cooperate and you are  forced to shut down and reboot. And you feel like a total fool to boot! ( pun intended)

Do not despair! There is a very simple trick to get around this. First, make sure you have clicked on it once to bring it into sight, or alt-tabbed to the window. Now, right click on the taskbar and choose *move*

 

You’ll notice that while your cursor has changed to the *move* cursor you still can’t move a thing.

 

 

Simply hit any of the arrow keys (up, down left, right) move your mouse and the window should *pop* back onto your screen.

For those of you who really know your way around a keyboard you can just alt-tab to the window, use alt-space and then M then the arrow key and move your mouse.

It’s surprising how many people are unaware of this trick which should work with all versions of Windows.

You can also right-click on the taskbar and choose to Cascade your open windows, which will often help bring the windows back onto the screen.

Now you can impress everyone in the office with your computer repairs skills. ;)

Over and out

MobileGeekette

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Hello, lovely people :)

Aaaaand in this edition of our computer repairs blog we will talk about hotkeys. Have you ever needed a hotkey for creating a new folder in Windows Explorer? Or is it just me?

Well, there is, and we have added the instructions for Windows 7 where it is just so easy to do!

There are actually a few solutions to this problem, you can download and install a small freeware app called bxNewFolder to assign the hotkey or you can use the built in accelerator keys.

How to make a New Folder Hotkey in Windows 7

Windows 7 comes with a shortcut key combination for creating new folders

Ctrl+Shift+N

If you use this shortcut key anywhere in Windows explorer a new folder will be instantly created.

How to use the Keyboard Accelerator Keys

You can also use the keyboard accelerator keys: Alt+F will bring up the file menu, and then <W> for the New menu, and then <F> for new folder. So your shortcut key sequence ends up being F+W+F with the Alt key held down. (Try it out)

We found that this works great once you get used to it, and it doesn’t require any additional software.

 How to install bxNewFolder

This freeware plugin uses F12 as the new folder hotkey, which is not changeable. So if you are using this in Windows XP, you’ll get the benefit of the new toolbar button that it adds, while there is no visible User Interface in Windows Vista, it still works perfectly.

To install this properly, you need to close all Windows Explorer windows and then choose Run as administrator from the right-click menu.

It should start working straight away once it has been installed. To open the new folder dialog press F12. If you hold down the shift key and hit enter after typing in the folder name it will navigate to the folder immediately.

In Windows XP, you’ll also get a New Folder button.

You will need to scroll nearly to the bottom of the page to find the installer download.

Yay! You can now do new folders with one click of a button. You totally rock as computer repairs technicians DIY!

Over and out

MobileGeekette

 

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Hello lovely people :)

In this installment of the computer repairs blog we will talk about using the “Up” keyboard shortcut.

Is everyone driven as insane as I am that Windows 7 and Vista do not have an UP button???? (Deep breath …another deep breath)

Fear not! We have found a keyboard shortcut replacement.

While I am in my x:wpmuwp-content directory I can usually click the “wpmu” part of the path and simulate the Up button, but it doesn’t always work, especially if I’ve tiled two windows beside each other or lowered the size of the window

This window is 600px wide; shouldn’t I have an easier way to go Up? Well, I do… if I just hit the following key combination:

Alt+Up

Now I’m in the parent directory – that is so much better!!!

This is also the fastest way to get to the Desktop folder – just keep pressing Alt+Up until you get to the folder you want.

Here are some other keyboard shortcuts for Explorer:

  • Alt+Right – Go forward
  • Alt+Left- Go back
  • Alt+D – Focus the address bar and select the current path.
  • F4 – Pop up the dropdown in the address bar, actually somewhat useful.
  • Alt+Enter – Properties of the selected file
  • Ctrl+Mousewheel – change the size of the icons
  • F11 – Put explorer into Fullscreen mode.

Well, there you go, fellow computer repairs DIYers.

Over and out

MobileGeekette

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Hello lovely people :)

In this installment of out computer repairs blog we will talk about problem steps recording to help troubleshoot Windows 7 machines. If you have ever been in the position of being asked to help sort out a computer problem, or diagnose a problem, based solely on their description, you know how difficult that can be. While you can try looking over their shoulder, or, using a remote session, it is not always  a practical solution. Windows 7 comes with a great  utility called Problem Steps Recorder which records the user’s actions and allows you, as a computer repairs DIY guru, to be able to find an answer a lot faster.

Type in “psr.exe” (no quotes) into the Start menu Search box to start up the Problem Steps Recorder

Or, you can create a shortcut for it on their desktop using the path “C:WindowsSystem32psr.exe”.  This means when a user calls for support they have a handy icon they can use to launch it.

The interface is nothing fancy; it has very basic controls which make it very easy to use. Click on the Start Record button and go through the steps to recreate where the problem is.

While it is recording you will notice a small red dot image briefly by the pointer when new shots are taken.  When finished the recording just click on Stop Record and then choose location to save the output file.

The output is saved as a zipped MHTML web archive file that can be viewed in Internet Explorer. Just have the user network share the file or email it to you.

You will be able to navigate through the recording and see what the user was doing.  It creates a file that allows you to scroll through each screen shot, view the shots as a slide show, or review tech details.

Here is an example of Slide Show view in Internet Explorer.

Towards the bottom of the document more additional technical information is shown.

One thing to note is that during the recording session you can hit the *Add Comment* button and highlight an area of the screen and leave a comment or question.

This is a nice addition to Windows 7 and it allows you to troubleshoot any issues. I hope this works for you. Good luck with all you computer repairs efforts.

Over and out

MobileGeekette

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Hello lovely people :)

In this entry of the computer repairs blog we will discuss how to share files and printer between Windows 7 and XP. Sounds good? Read on!

If you have a home network and you are running Windows 7 but still have XP on your other computers, you might like to share files between them. That would be handy, woudn’t it? This is how you can do it.

Generally, it is a very easy process to share folders between the two Windows 7 machines using the new *HomeGroup* feature. As you have already discovered, otherwise you would not be reading this,  the HomeGroup feature does not talk to Windows XP or Vista. To get over this hurdle, wisely created by smart Silicon Valley computer repairs and other distinguished geeks you need to do the following:

Step 1 – make sure both machines are members of the same Workgroup which by default is named Workgroup.

Then on your Windows 7 machine, go to – Control Panel All Control Panel Items Network and Sharing Center then click on Change advanced sharing settings.

 

You will need to double check these settings under Advanced Sharing Settings for the Home or Work and Public profile.

If you wish for any user to have access the public shares turn off password protection.  You will be able to find this in Advanced Sharing Settings toward the bottom of the list.

If you need to keep it enabled make sure there is a log in account for the other XP machines and they have a password.

Go into Network in Windows 7 you’ll now see your XP machine and the Windows 7 as well which in this case is Mysticgeek-PC. (Thanks to a famous geek on the internet :)

If you want to share the printer on the Windows 7 machine, go into Devices and Printers from the Start menu and double click on the printer icon. This is easy.

Next double click on *Customise your printer*.

In the Properties screen that will pop up once you select the Customise your printer option click on the Sharing Tab and check the box to share the printer and type in its share name.

If your XP machine is an x86 OS you can install Additional Drivers before setting up the XP machine.

To see the shared folders and devices double click on the Windows 7 machine icon under Network.  Here you can see the printer connected to our Windows 7 machine is shared and also the Users Folder.

 

Continue into the Users folder and *Public* to see the shared folders, here we have also created a folder called XP Share just to keep everything in a central location.

Go over to your XP machine and open up *My Network Places* to find the Windows 7 (mysticgeek-pc) shared folder.

 

Double click on the Share folder to see the list of all shared folders in the Public folder on Windows 7.  If you have password protected – you will need to type in the username and password of the user account on the Windows 7 machine first.

And this is how to set your Windows XP computer with a Shared Printer

Step 1 -  Go into Printers and Faxes from the Start menu to set up the shared printer in XP and start the Add Printer Wizard.

Now select *A network printer or a printer attached to another computer* then click Next.

Next select *Connect to this printer…* and type in the path for the printer connected to the Windows 7 machine and click next.  

Now click Yes!!!!  :) to the confirmation message.

 

Then click Finish the printer to install and complete the Wizard.

In some cases you may need to install the x86 XP drivers for the shared printer because the Windows 7 drivers are not compatible with XP.  When everything is installed open up Printers and Faxes to find the shared printer.

 

These tips should help you to start sharing your files and other devices with your Windows 7 PC. When we first started we could see the printer on XP straight away as we had a HomeGroup set up, but when that was deleted we needed to share our printer just as you would in a *WorkGroup*. You may find you also have to do a few restarts on the Windows XP computer for it to see the shared resources on Windows 7.

Well, now that you have done it, delete the computer repairs geeks number from your speed dial because you are awesome!

Over and out

MobileGeekette

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Hello lovely people :)

In this entry of our computer repairs How To blog we will talk about creating a context menu Item to copy a text file to the clipboard.

This trick is particularly good for those people who, like me, like to  keep a lot of information stored in text-format files on the drive. You no doubt know the protracted process of doing it the ‘normal way’ but, what if you could do it with a simple context menu item instead?

You can do this just that by using a little registry hacking and the clip.exe utility that comes built into Windows 7 and Vista and, as a handy bonus you can also hide it behind the Shift + Right-Click. This trick will allow you not to waste space on the menu unless you hold down the shift key.

This is how you do it.

Simply hold down the Shift key and right-click on a text file, and you’ll see a new item for “Copy to Clipboard”:

You now have all the information on the clipboard ready for easy pasting into whatever application you’d like:

Windows XP users, go ahead and  download  clip.exe from Microsoft. Just save the file in the Windows directory.

Manual Registry Hack (for .txt files)

Go to the search or run box, or start menu and open up regedit.exe, and then browse down to the following key:

HKEY_CLASSES_ROOTtxtfileshell

Below each file type in the registry (for instance txtfile), there is a shell key with a list of actions under it. For example, we will create a new key called “*copytoclip*, and then a key under it called “command”. Set the default value of “copytoclip” to something useful that describes what it is – like *Copy Contents to Clipboard*, and then set the default value of*command* to something less human friendly by great for your machine like the following:

cmd /c clip < “%1″

What we are doing is running a command prompt (you have all heard of these and used them more than once). If you feel comfortable operating in this mode, you can use the same trick for other file types.

Well, I hope this has helped in you computer DIY efforts but if you are lost give out computer repairs boys and girls a call and they will sort you out.

Over and out

MobileGeekette

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