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451
votes
19answers
305k views

How can I remove malicious spyware, malware, adware, viruses, trojans or rootkits from my PC?

What should I do if my Windows computer seems to be infected with a virus or malware? What are the symptoms of an infection? What should I do after noticing an infection? What can I do to get rid of ...
49
votes
4answers
15k views

How do I recover lost/inaccessible data from my storage device?

What steps can I take to try to recover lost or inaccessible data from any storage device? Answers: This applies to any computer storage device, e.g. internal/external hard drives, USB sticks, flash ...
44
votes
3answers
44k views

What can I do if my USB flash drive is write-protected or read-only?

When I plug in my USB flash drive, it shows up on my computer as write-protected or read-only. I am unable to transfer data to it, nor can I modify or delete any files already stored on it. I also ...
170
votes
16answers
280k views

What can I do if I forgot my Windows password?

I got a brand new Windows 7 machine, installed the operating system, created one account and forgot its password. What can I do? There is no external CD, the operating system is loaded from somewhere ...
296
votes
21answers
154k views

How can I visualize the file system usage on Windows?

How can I visualize which folders and files are taking up all of the space on my hard drive? I'm getting some conflicting reports on the size of hard drive contents. Namely what is and isn't there ...
197
votes
6answers
294k views

Where can I download Windows 7 (legally from Microsoft)?

I just bought a serial for Windows 7 on-line from the Microsoft store (the most painful shopping experience EVER!). I selected that I wanted to download my version of Windows 7 after purchase. After ...
124
votes
1answer
18k views

Windows Activation FAQ: How do language, version, 64-bit or 32-bit, and source affect ability to install and transfer Windows licenses?

We get a lot of questions on Super User about Windows activation and licensing. This question is an attempt to answer the most common questions in one place with a canonical answer. When reinstalling ...
357
votes
5answers
724k views

What are PATH and other environment variables, and how can I set or use them?

Questions about setting environment variables the PATH are very common here, and in most cases the answers are very similar to each other. In the future it would be nice to have a good Q/A for this....
26
votes
4answers
22k views

How to get rights of admin after I disabled all admin accounts in my computer

I accidentally disabled my admin account. After I login to another account I found I can not get admin rights, because all admin accounts on my computer are disabled. I clicked on 'run as ...
26
votes
5answers
45k views

Where can I get a clean ISO of a specific build of Windows 10?

I need to repair my Windows 10 installation. Where can I get a clean ISO (with install.wim, no Install.ESD, so that I can run DISM against the WIM) of the specific Windows 10 build required for this? ...
21
votes
2answers
12k views

How do I add VBA in MS Office?

I've seen posts showing answers which use VBA (Visual Basic for Applications) code/macros, however, I've also noted additional comments afterwards about how to use the VBA (how to implement and ...
556
votes
13answers
3.3m views

Windows 7 SP1 Windows Update stuck checking for updates

I installed Windows 7 fresh and installed SP1. Now, when I try to check manually for Windows Updates it just hangs on the Checking for updates screen. I tried running the tools in How do I reset ...
33
votes
4answers
238k views

USB flash drive not working or is appearing as an empty disk drive, Disk Management reports “No Media” with 0 bytes size

I have a USB flash drive which is no longer recognized by my computer. Windows Disk Management and DiskPart report No Media with no storage space (0 bytes) on the drive and I cannot partition or ...
80
votes
12answers
22k views

Stopping all automatic updates Windows 10

We've upgraded some machines to Windows 10 and realized there were some updates which updated as required. However, I realized there was no option available to stop the download similar to that on ...
89
votes
9answers
33k views

Why does Windows only show about 3.5 GB of my 4 GB of RAM?

I recently upgraded my computer's RAM to 4 GB. My 32-bit Windows installation shows only 3574 MB of the memory. How can I make Windows use the full amount of RAM?
158
votes
16answers
397k views

How can I read my hard drive’s SMART status in Windows 7?

How can I read the S.M.A.R.T. state of my HDDs while using Windows 7, either automatically or manually?
42
votes
5answers
25k views

Windows Starter Edition, Home and Home Premium do not include gpedit, how do I install it?

I want to make some changes to Windows that require using the Group Policy Editor (gpedit.msc). Unfortunately the Group Policy Editor is not included with the Starter Edition, Home and Home Premium ...
225
votes
19answers
54k views

32-bit vs. 64-bit systems

What are the differences between 32-bit and 64-bit systems? If you have used both of them, what kind of sharp differences have you experienced? Would it be a problem to use 32-bit programs on 64-...
126
votes
7answers
311k views

Troubleshoot High CPU usage by the “System” process

I have noticed that from some time my system is freezing and its probably caused by the high CPU usage which is caused by the system process. All applications I'm running is the Skype, TeamSpeak and ...
376
votes
21answers
845k views

How can I download an entire website?

How can I download all pages from a website? Any platform is fine.
176
votes
18answers
408k views

What utility can move my Windows boot partition over to another hard drive? [closed]

Can anyone recommend a cheap/free utility that can do this without very much effort? My preference is that it would be really easy. Boot into Windows Pick drive to move Pick target drive It copies ...
173
votes
12answers
112k views

Why does the /winsxs folder grow so large, and can it be made smaller?

A Vista virtual machine I use only has a 10 GB virtual hard disk -- and I'm worried about it running out of space over time. I used TreeSize to check for the culprits.. And the primary culprit is ...
71
votes
7answers
54k views

How do I reset the Windows XP Administrator password?

I have forgotten the Administrator password of my Windows XP installation and locked out. Is there a way to reset it? I do have physical access to the PC.
21
votes
4answers
28k views

Can I safely charge my laptop with a non-standard, third-party charger?

I have a Toshiba Satellite laptop. My charger has stopped working. I have access to a Lenovo charger. Can I use this charger on my laptop?
76
votes
8answers
248k views

How can I remap a keyboard key?

One of my laptop's keys has fallen off. Is there any way I can remap another key to serve as that key? I'll 'sacrifice' the other key because I never use it.
59
votes
10answers
218k views

How can I tell what RAM will fit my computer?

If I want to add more RAM to my computer, how can I buy something compatible? What kinds are there? How do I determine which kind my computer will accept and how much I can add?
21
votes
8answers
48k views

What is the easiest method of checking SMART status for your hard drive?

I've seen programs in the past that were able to check the SMART status of a hard disk drive but it wasn't easy for me to find. Also, I think I had to boot into the CD in order to check on it. What is ...
122
votes
9answers
103k views

Can I use my laptop as a second monitor?

Is it possible to make my laptop's screen act as a second monitor for my desktop computer?
566
votes
16answers
342k views

How to *disable* automatic reboots in Windows 10?

Windows 10 lets you 'schedule' a reboot for later. I want to disable it. Evidently Windows scheduled itself for a reboot last night when I wasn't looking and just closed everything I had been working ...
107
votes
12answers
11k views

Securely erasing all data from a hard drive

I am about to sell my old desktop PC and I am cautious about some of my sensitive information being available to the purchaser, even after reformatting the hard-drive, using data recovery software. ...
129
votes
22answers
338k views

How can I mass rename files?

I've got a bunch of files named with a the pattern 99 - DescriptiveName.txt and I'd like to remove the number from the front so I just have DescriptiveName.txt. How can I do this? Can I do it from ...
92
votes
4answers
288k views

Windows 10 high memory usage (unknown reason)

A few days ago I updated my PC to Windows 10. However, after some use my PC started to slow down until it was impossible to use – it was due to high memory usage. After a restart, everything came back ...
5
votes
1answer
14k views

Computer doesn't boot up, shows PXE error and/or “operating system not found”, “no bootable device”, “insert boot media”, or other similar error

My computer no longer boots Windows or the installed operating system. Instead, I may get this error: PXE-E61: Media test failure, check cable -or- Check cable connection! PXE-M0F: Exiting PXE ROM. ...
124
votes
10answers
509k views

How can I repair the Windows 8 EFI Bootloader?

I installed Windows 7 and Windows 8 in EFI mode on a hard disk some days ago. Today, the bootloader got missing/corrupted. I currently have the Windows 8 installer on a flash drive and tried using ...
77
votes
17answers
207k views

How do I troubleshoot a Windows freeze or slowness?

A machine is described as being "really slow" or "freezing". How can I troubleshoot/resolve this issue? What should be the first steps to take?
83
votes
4answers
138k views

Windows 10, 'System' process taking massive amounts of RAM

Since I upgraded to Windows 10, my system has been consuming RAM excessively I've been reading a bit and determined it's likely a driver leaking memory. So I got myself the Windows Driver Kit and ...
393
votes
23answers
428k views

How to delete directories with path/names too long for normal delete

Windows seems to have a length limit on file names when trying to delete, though it won't prevent those files from being created. Our build process creates a number of temporary files (many build off ...
118
votes
7answers
206k views

How to shrink Windows 7 boot partition with unmovable files

I have just bought an HP laptop with Windows 7 (64 bit). It has a 500 GB HDD with three partitions: a small hidden system partition, a 12 GiB HP recovery partition, and a 450 GiB C:...
157
votes
7answers
80k views

Is it better to use a laptop on battery or on AC power?

When I'm at home, is it better to use the laptop plugged into AC power, or with just the battery, for the overall battery life?
66
votes
3answers
118k views

How can I reinstall Windows 7 if I lost my installation DVD? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Where do I download Windows 7 (legally from Microsoft)? I have lost my Windows 7 installation DVD, but I do have the license key. How can I get a Windows 7 DVD? Can I download ...
148
votes
23answers
571k views

Run a batch file in a completely hidden way

I'm looking for some way to run a batch file (.bat) without anything visible to the user (no window, no taskbar name, .etc..). I don't want to use some program to do that, I'm looking for something ...
66
votes
7answers
86k views

Install Windows 7 from USB flash drive

I have an ISO image of the Windows 7 installation DVD, but I can't burn it to CD or DVD. I have an empty flash drive with plenty of space. Is there any way I can put the ISO image on it and install ...
182
votes
21answers
412k views

How do I place a bootable ISO on a USB drive?

What's the best way of placing a bootable ISO on a USB drive, such that the drive is bootable? ISOs such as a live Linux preview disk, Windows installation ISO, etc.
41
votes
5answers
25k views

Where can I download Windows 8 legally, from Microsoft?

I obtained a licence key for Windows 8 through DreamSpark. Is there a way to download a Windows 8 ISO image like you could for Windows 7? I am on a non-Windows machine, so I cannot use the Secure ...
89
votes
10answers
23k views

Cross-platform file system

I would like my external drives to be readable and writable from Linux, Mac OS X and Windows. FAT32 works, but the 4 GB file size limit is a showstopper these days. Are there any alternatives?
42
votes
15answers
107k views

How can I monitor all and any Internet traffic from my home PC?

I would like to monitor all and any Internet traffic from my home PC to see what programs installed on my home machine are accessing the Internet. I thought I could use Fiddler for this, but I ...
17
votes
2answers
50k views

My keyboard is typing by itself, could there be a ghost in it?

The keyboard on my laptop seems to be typing by itself: It sometimes types characters like 134, whether by itself or when I hit certain keys. Repeating characters may appear unexpectedly. The system ...
114
votes
3answers
51k views

How can I determine which process owns a hotkey in Windows?

Given a hotkey, how can I find which program owns it?
227
votes
6answers
154k views

Should laptops remain plugged in when their battery is 100% charged?

When your laptop's battery is 100% charged, should you leave it plugged in so any battery power doesn't get used, or will that cause overcharging, overheating, etc.? Should the laptop be unplugged ...
75
votes
4answers
130k views

Windows using too much RAM, how to diagnose resource hog

I have 16GB of system RAM. On startup with no applications open except the task-manager Windows is using about 3gb of RAM. I looked in the processes tab, but nothing seems to be out of the ordinary. ...

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