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Question and Answer
We have identical HP ENVY notebooks, both systems run Windows 10. Lately, I've noticed one notebook is clearly slower than the other. I've tried many tricks that I read about online with little success. Yesterday I called HP support and the tech instructed me to reinstall Windows 10. However, she also warned reinstalling Windows can be a difficult and risky task. I explained I am not a technical person and I am worried that I may lose important documents and files. She then suggested I look at programs that will safely repair Windows and corrupt files, including one named Reimage. Can you give me your opinion on Reimage? Is it safe and will it restore my notebook back to life?
– Rusty T., Glendale, AZ

The HP tech is correct. Whether you have a hidden virus, malware or corrupted file(s), you need to restore and repair Windows. Reimage is a well known and reputable program that safely and automatically restores Windows thereby removing the risk of actually needing to reinstall your operating system. Reimage's free scan will safely diagnose your PC for many well known problems, like corrupt files, a hidden virus, malware and even spyware. After the deep scan, Reimage will actually repair the damage found on your PC by implementing their patented technology that restores your Windows OS with a certified database of replacement files. Reimage's award winning technology will reverse the damage done to your Windows operating system. The result is a much faster and secure computer.

» Download Reimage

It seems commonplace to learn about people who have experienced their personal identity and privacy has been compromised on the web. It's downright wrong and invasive. But most of all it is truly scary. I'm a casual PC user and I know I'm at risk even though I have anti-virus installed. How do you suggest I protect myself and my family's privacy these days?
– Nikki C. Embarrass, MN

Online privacy is extremely important today. Unfortunately, many companies you think you can trust secretly monitor 90% everything you do online. This is known as 'Digital Fingerprinting'. These companies will sell and share your personal whereabouts and activity to others in an effort to influence your daily online life and decisions. They are experts that know where the information is stored on your system, and they want it. Sadly, anti-virus software does not help with this problem. To protect yourself, we recommend you use an app named TrackOFF. Think of TrackOFF as a true safety vault. The privacy team at TrackOFF prevent nasty data miners from obtaining and stealing information about you and your family (age, religion, work and school), your finances (income, debt, credit, loans, bank accounts) and web history (articles, videos, shopping). Try TrackOFF's free online scan to see the digital tracks you leave behind and protect yourself in minutes.

» Download TrackOFF

I'm constantly getting notifications of Windows updates. Do I really need to install them all? What benefit will I get from them?
– Don C., Carson City, NV

One of the most common things that hackers use to hack your system are the known vulnerabilities in the OS. Many of the updates that are marked as “critical” are security related. Therefore it’s a very good idea to install the updates in the RECOMMENDED section, because it is most likely addressing a vulnerability that a hacker has found. At the very least, make sure you keep Windows Update active so that you will at least know when the updates become available. Adding and improving features is another good reason to install updates. You can also set Windows Update to automatically install updates so you won’t need to do any manual installation of the updates. Instead, you will just be notified that Windows has installed the updates.

Driver Tip: Rolling Back Drivers in Windows

We've realized from talking to our customers, that many of them are unaware of the driver rollback feature in Windows. This feature can come in very handy when installing drivers. If a driver doesn't work very well for you, and you want rollback to the previously installed driver, here is how you can do that:

1. Open the Device Manager.

2. In Device Manager, locate the device that you want to rollback the driver for. You can navigate through the hardware categories by clicking the + or > icon. You can find specific devices under these major hardware categories.

3. After finding the hardware you're rolling back the driver for, right click on the device's name or icon and click on Properties.

4. In the Properties window for the device, click the Driver tab.

5. On the Driver tab, click the Roll Back Driver button. If the Roll Back Driver button is disabled, Windows does not have a previous driver to roll back to so you won't be able to complete this process.

6. Click the Yes button to the "Are you sure you would like to roll back to the previously installed driver software?" question. The previously installed driver will now be restored. You should see the Roll Back Driver button as disabled after the roll back is complete.

7. Click the Close button at the bottom of the device properties screen. Click Yes on the System Settings Change dialog box that says "Your hardware settings have changed. You must restart your computer for these changes to take effect. Do you want to restart your computer now?" If this message is hidden, closing the Control Panel window might help. You won't be able to close Device Manager. Depending on the device driver you're rolling back, it's possible that you won't need to restart your PC. If you don't see the message, consider the roll back complete.

8. When Windows starts again, it will load the device driver for this hardware you had previously installed.

Driver Roll Back only allows you to roll back a driver once. In other words, Windows only keeps a copy of the very last driver installed. It does not keep an archive of all previously installed drivers for the device.




PC Performance Tip: Turn Off Cloud Sync to Make Windows Faster

Windows 10 offers built-in support for Microsoft’s cloud storage service OneDrive. You can copy all the files and folders to OneDrive which you want to upload to the cloud. Even if you’re a die-hard fan of the OneDrive, turning on the sync and forgetting about it wouldn’t be a smart move, because it consumes your PC's resources and slow down Windows 10. To disable OneDrive sync, go to:

This PC > OneDrive (right-click) > Choose OneDrive folders to sync. On the next screen, untick the checkbox "Sync all files and folders in OneDrive" and click OK.

» Perform a PC performance scan now!


BIOS Tip – Will An Updated BIOS Fix That?

A question we get quite often is “Can a new BIOS fix my problem?” The answer depends on what the problem is. There are certain things that a BIOS update will not fix. The following are a couple of examples.

Increasing Amount of RAM or Updating the CPU – This one is a little tricky. Here’s why… While, in most cases, you may need a BIOS update to help with your RAM and CPU support, it isn’t the only factor. The chipset on the motherboard must also support the amount of RAM and the speed of the CPU that you want to upgrade to. For example, if you want to upgrade to 4GB of RAM, and the system chipset only supports 2GB, then a BIOS update isn’t going to make a difference. However if the system chipset supports 4GB and your system will only see 2GB, THEN a BIOS update is necessary. With the CPU, the system chipset must support the speed that you are upgrading to If not, then the BIOS doesn’t matter.

USB Boot Capability – USB Boot Capability is another function that is dependent on the chipset. The system chipset must support this function in order for the BIOS to enable it.

» Perform a BIOS scan now!

Tech Tip

Windows Hello

Windows 10 includes a suite of new biometric security features known as Windows Hello, and – if your computer has the necessary hardware – you can use fingerprint detection or face recognition to log in. From the Settings app (search for it from the taskbar) choose Accounts and then Sign-in options to see the different choices available.



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Quote of the Month
"Winning isn't everything, it's the only thing."

- Vince Lombardi

Sites of the Month

Fun Sites
Dead Man’s Switch
Is there anything that you would like to tell people close to you, in case something bad were to happen to you?

Useful Site
Documentary Heaven
A very interesting website loaded with a comprehensive collection of documentaries that you can watch for free.

Did You Know?

In 2017, U.S. weather disasters set a new record by causing $306 billion in damages. The previous record was $215 billion in 2005, the year of Hurricane Katrina.


Vocab Test
Jejune

Lacking interest or significance or impact.


Browser Add-On
Privacy Badger

Improve Focus and Boost Productivity with Background Noise.

SmartPhone App
Unified Remote

Unified Remote is one of the go-to apps for controlling your PC from an Android device.

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