Here’s a simple way to repair your network (from PCWinTech - an excellent site).
With IOBit’s Portable Free PC Repair ToolBox, this all in wonder tool can help you perform many tasks that usually takes many tools working together to thoroughly analyze and clean your computer. This tool is an excellent tool for any computer tech.
Some of the features -
More than 20 tools in a portable app that allows you
- Process viewer
- Disk viewer
- Disk Cleaner
- Registry Cleaner
- Windows Analyzer that allows you to repair minor problems
- Security Analyzer
- Optimizes Memory
- Find Duplicate Files
- System Information
- Empty Folder Scanner
- Privacy Sweeper
- Memory Optimizer
- Internet Booster
- Registry Defrag
- IE Repair
- Disk Doctor
- Shortcut Fixer
- Security Scanner
- Driver Manager (Backup and Update)
- and more!
Microsoft’s Attack Surface Analyzer will take a quick snapshot of your computer’s state before and after the installation of software. IT Professionals can asses their organization’s applications. Other IT personnel can use this to look at the risk of software installed. Be sure to read Microsoft’s overview of this software.
Once this scan is ran, a new scan can be ran to compare the newly installed product changes to your computer.
Want to calibrate your batter on your laptop? Microsoft Joulemeter (.90 mb download) does just that.
From Microsoft Research:
“Joulemeter is a software tool that estimates the power consumption of your computer. It tracks computer resources, such as CPU utilization and screen brightness, and estimates power usage.”
- Make sure your battery is above 50%
- Remember to leave your computer idle when this takes place
- Your screen brightness will change (disable Flux if you have it installed) and turn black
- Be Patient
Ready to calibrate
Phase Three (Power Model)
The Windows System Control Center is an all in one tool that offers a ton (hundreds) of features. These features are compatible with Windows XP, Windows 7 and Windows 8.
The installation can be made to a portable drive or installed on a computer. During the installation, new software can be installed allowing features to be added or updated.
During this installation process, you may get virus alerts but the software is safe. These alerts are false positives (the software accesses key areas that control Windows).
Click Allow or Safe in your anti-virus control panel.
Initially you will have 264 software installs.
Once the features are installed (This can initially take a few minutes), The control center opens to dozens of categories and hundreds of features allowing you to tweak Windows or to correct problems.
In its Beta release, FancyCache offers a simplex program that uses unused memory to boost the speed of your hard drive. But does it work? Yes. My Dell Inspirion is already fast, but with FancyCache, programs do open quicker and the computer is even more responsive. With the ability to tweak how I wanted to cache, I used 2gb of the 6gb of RAM on board in the settings.
The default settings alone were convincing enough to show how my computer sped up after a few minutes of use. Although my computer is a 64bit laptop, the caching methods used and the read/write cache algorithms did boost performance.
FancyCache is certainly beneficial for 32 bit users who are locked in at 3gb of RAM. FancyCache can take advantage of memory above this limit to speed up your computer. And whether you do or don’t elect to install FancyCache, at least tweak your settings in a 32 bit computer to tweak your memory. (See our Link)
The only problem I had was once I downloaded the software, it said it was expired. A quick check on their website and keys can be obtained here. The latest key is valid until July 2013.
Will I buy this product? I’m not sure yet, time and use of Fancycache will tell.
Spycar attempts to make changes to your registry and Windows system to test your anti-virus and malware protection software. Follow the links on Spycar’s website and click through the tests. Your antivirus should block any attempt of malicious activities. Spycar is free to use and is an excellent resource for quick testing your security.
BitDefender blocking Spycar’s attempts
EICAR has several files you can download and test your antivirus and malware software. Your antivirus should block the downloading of these files or quarantine the files immediately.
How many devices do you pass through before surfing the web?
Detect Multiple Routers over at PCWinTech is an excellent program to find your routers.
In the scenario below, our home computers go through a wireless router and on to a router
(non-wireless) supplied by the ISP. (Two Gateways)
In our home, I have multiple routers setup and as you can see on the pic below, I am going thru three wireless routers and then the ISPs router. (Reconnected to another wireless router).
VMware Player allows for the installation of a virtual machine onto your workstation. This means of creating a second operating system within your operating system allows you to test or use an operating system of your choice. The user-friendly interface is truly the easiest virtualization software there is. Anyone wanting to try Windows 8 or any Linux distro can use this software to test operating systems. VMWare Player can be downloaded here.
VMware Player is fully customizable and the wizard provides instructions that are well written and with easy to find settings. Kudos to VMware for providing this excellent piece of software in an easy to use interface.
Remember, once you start the VM, if you click the mouse in the window, it will take focus. To release the mouse, press Ctrl-Alt.
You must also remember to protect any OS in a VM. (Antivirus information)
The first thing you will need is an .iso of your operating system of choice.
Above is the ISO for 32 bit Windows 7 with SP 1.
Next, install the VMWare Player. The installation is straight forward and easy even for a novice.
Now start the VMware Player by double clicking on the icon on your desktop. In this scenario we created a new virtual machine.
The New Virtual Machine Wizard walks you through step by step in setting up your operating system.
The wizard will ask for a location of the ISO or you can install from your DVD drive. Select the appropriate location at this time (below).
Enter your product key and information if prompted to do so. The Easy Install Information automates the installation process. You can of course customize Windows and reset passwords, enable the Administrator account and change information once the operating system is installed.
Once the wizard reaches the customization stages for your hard drive, you can adjust this to meet your needs.
You can select the Customize Hardware button to adjust memory, processors and other hardware. Remember to give your host machine plenty of memory. Do not use more resources than you have. This may cause lockups or other errors upon launching your OS.
One of the best features is the Network Adapter Advanced Settings. It allows you to bridge or NAT (Put your OS on a separate network – hidden from other computers on your network). Bridging your network allows your virtual computer to be ‘seen’ by other computers as though it is a physical computer. Because you are sharing a network card, you can limited the bandwidth (Inbound and Outbound traffic) of the virtual computer.
You can also generate a MAC address for the computer at this time.
The screenshot below (post install) shows the virtual computer when bridged (on the same network).
It is important to keep an eye on the resources of your host computer. You can do this by using the Windows Task Manager.
Once you finish, Windows will launch into setup mode. You will see a message alerting you to other devices that can be used (Webcams and other devices) if they are available.
As you can see from the screen shot below, the IP address is on the network with my other computers. This allows the computer to share out documents and to utilize any device within the network.
The VMware player tools provides drivers and other features.
Installing the tools
Once the tools are installed, a restart should be made to the operating system.
Remember the option to use other devices during the setup – items such as the Webcam? Click on Player when the VM starts and you will see the other devices.
You should also run a side by side comparison on the Task Manager’s to ‘see’ how much resources you are using. As you can see, the host (left) is maxing out the memory of the host computer. The virtual computer is not utilizing all of the allocated memory. Therefore the 2Gb of RAM allocated can be tweaked by decreasing the memory if performance is not an issue.
Once the VM is shutdown, you can adjust the settings in the console.
With dozens of tweaks and configurations, one of the best is the defragment, expansion and compact option under the hard disk in the virtual machine settings. (Compact only sorts the graintables but has no effect on size – optimizing your vm)
Overall VMware’s Player is an excellent tool that can be used (non-commercially) by anyone wanting to experiment with or run other operating systems. VMware Player is an excellent virtualization tool that allows users to install and test or run another operating system. The performance is based on shared resources of the host computer. The ease of setup is definitely a pro. Users should make every effort to ensure they have adequate resources on the host computer and the maximum amount of memory and other resources can be dedicated to the virtual machine.
Rick over at Whats On My PC has found a website with an amazing amount of resources. (See Rick’s article here) To credit Mike over at GE Geek, this website is one of the best references I have ever seen. Visit Rick for a direct link to this amazing website.
There is also a Toolkit you can download at the top of the page.
(Approximately 1Gb! of information)
Need to check your processor to ensure it is functioning properly. Intel’s tool to test your processor will stress your processor and test dozens of functions. Your computer will slow down during this test. Once the test finishes, you can truly check to make sure your processor is working correctly.