Archives for Toolkit

How to Disable Windows 10 upgrade notifications

How to Disable Windows 10 upgrade notifications

Microsoft has several KB articles that describe how to manually disable Windows 10 update notifications.  Unfortunately, the process is cumbersome and shame on Microsoft for not providing a Mr.Fixit utility that could disable the notification, automatically.

But, Steve Gibson has also provided a utility, Never10, which will perform these task for you.  Just select the proper OS version you are currently running, download, and run the utility.


If you are curious about Microsoft answers to “How to disable Windows 10 upgrade notification, check out the articles below.
This answers directly from Microsoft (KB – Knowledge Base articles)

Read More

Microsoft Office Alternative Suites

Several free alternatives to Microsoft Office are available and each has the ability to view and edit your existing Microsoft Office Word, Excel, and Power point documents.

KingSoft offers an alternative office suite that have been reviewed and approved by PC World Magazine and is my 1st choice. When I have inherited a laptop I usually restore the computer to factory defaults, uninstall the Microsoft Office evaluation suite and install KingSoft from Download Link


OpenOffice – The Apache Open Office ( has been around for over 10 years and is a wonderful alternative to the Microsoft Office suite. Download Link.

LibreOffice – We were introduced to this office suite when using Linux instead of Microsoft Windows as our computers operating system. Libre Office also offer a Microsoft Windows compatible version that is just as robust and can be downloaded from Download link

Read More

Computer Shops You Can Trust

Whom do you trust to fix your computers?

We are convinced that there are lots of small to medium sized computer repair shops who are NOT out to take your money by doing needless or shoddy repairs. You can prove us right by adding the name of a computer shop that you trust to this list.  Just get in touch with us through the Contact button on the homepage and let us know who they are.  BUT….make sure that you actually have used their services and can give a personal testimonial of the work they do.  This is not a chance for companies to self-promote; and we will do our best to eliminate those as quickly as possible.

Trusted Local Computer Workshops

Kathleen Norton-Schock reviewed Dan’s PC Solutions— 5 star
Computer Repair Service
Dan's PC Solutions
January 31, 2018

Dan (and Amber) have provided us,with expert help for both home and office computers for a number of years. Honest; totally customer-service-oriented; very affordable; kind —just some of the adjectives we would use. What’s not to like??? Highly recommend doing business with them. We are more than satisfied! – AND now in May, 2018, Dan does it again. #Microsoft gets

Read More

How to Remove Sweetim malware

computer_virusSweetim is a nasty piece of download malware that is showing up all over my family’s PC’s.  Hijacks your search by burying itself as an extension in IE and Google (don’t know about Safari and Firefox yet.)  Found a super site on the Net with a full solution that may fix a bunch of other viruses/malware on your computer.  Check this site out and follow the directions completely to get rid of Sweetim malware.  If you don’t follow all the steps it will reappear thanks to some registry entries.

Read More

New Year's Good Housekeeping

It’s time to tune up your computer.

Once again Woody Leonard of Windows Secrets Newsletter, has published an excellent article with detail on how to make this happen.  Slip to the top of your New Year’s to-do list and enjoy safe and much more secure computing in the coming year.

Let your PC start the new year right!

Fred Langa
By Fred Langa on January 10, 2013 in Top Story

A little time spent now on preventive maintenance can save hours of PC troubleshooting later — and provide better computing all year long.

Use the following steps to give your PC an annual checkup — and ensure it starts 2013 as healthy as possible.

Read More

Toolkit – Other free utilities

GE Geek – Great Website for information, training, cheat-sheet and utilities

One of the best utilities that we have recommended for years.  It comes with a disk cleaner and a registry scanner and can be used to remove unwanted programs from starting up.

The 46 Best Free Utilities
Ian “Gizmo” Richards maintains a running list of the 46 best free utilities on his “Tech Support Alert” Web site. Gizmo keeps the list up to date by adding and removing utilities and updating each of the 46 descriptions. I have referenced this page frequently, and have now added it to our Tool Kit.

Nir Sofers list of free utilities and Tools  – Exellent web site that provides list of free utilities and tools –  Tech tools  – Recover passwords, Wireless router keys, networking utilities, command line utils, and much more.

Microsoft Windows Service Packs –  Download a Windows Service Pack as a single file.  If you are having difficulty locate older Windows Service packs you might find them at this Microsoft site.

Read More

Toolkit – Bootable CD tools (LiveCD)


Hiren’s BootCD is a free bootable CD containing various diagnostic programs for fixing various Windows computer problems.  It is a Linux based operating system and provides dozens of utilities that can be best described as performing first aid for your computer. Anti-virus and Malware scanners, disk-check utilities, Password removal, undelete……Download the 500mb zip file, extract or copy the files into a new folder,  and run the BurnCD and let the program create the Hirens bootCD.  Hiren’s Bootable USB tutorial – A Video tutorial on how to create a Hirens CD

Microsoft Bootable Windows Defender – Microsoft Windows defender on a bootable USB stick or CD.  Once created you can boot your computer from the USB flash drive or CD and allow Windows Defender to scan and remove Viruses and Malware.

Puppy Linux is a bootable live CD that allows you to boot your computer from the puppy linux CD, bypassng your Windows Operating system, allowing you to view (and backup) all of your computers files.  Read the entire article – here

Kaspersky Boot CD – This is a wonderful free utility provided by Kaspersky antivirus that allows you to create a bootable CD and scan your computers for viruses …

Read More

Toolkit – PC Firewall

Zone Alarm Personal Firewall by Zone Labs
Protects your computer by placing a barrier between your PC and all network traffic coming in and going out of your computer.  Make sure you are downloading the free ZoneAlarm firewall and not the ZoneAlarm Security suite which is “nagware”.  What that means is that after 30-60 days of free use, the software begins to nag you to upgrade to the paid version.

Read More

Rootkit Scanner

A rootkit is a stealthy type of malicious software (malware) designed to hide it existence from the Windows operating system as well as hide from Antivirus and AntiMalware scanners.  If your computer continues, and I’m talking every few minutes or hours, to become re-infected with Trojans, Viruses, or Malware then you might have a rootkit.  Rootkits can remain on your computer and re-infect the computer even if you perform a system restore, reload your operating system, or use a manufactures factory installation media.

Malware-Bytes  Rootkit scanner – An excellent utiity that is small, easy to use and is one of the best rootkit scanners available.

Kapersky Anti-rootkit utility – TDSSKiller is a free utility provided by Kapersky that will scan for Malicious rootkit software on your computer. 

McAfee now provides a Rootkit scanner –  A Rootkit is basically a malicous program (virus) that hides itself by using invalid WIndows characters – Microsoft will not let you create a file or folder with characters – !@#$%^&*()….).  Most antivirus scanners can not detect rootkits.

Read More

Toolkit – AntiMalware and AntiSpyware

Special Note:   Remember – If your computer appears to be infected the first step I perform is a Windows Recover / System Restore.  A system restore will return your computers system files to a state recorded on a particlulare date and time you have selected (before the infection).

The longer the virus, malware, or scare-ware is running the more deeply it can embed itself into your computer, even disabling the ability to install antivirus / antimalware scanners.  When you perform a system restore the malicious files may still be on your computer but the modifications made by the virus that allows it to run when the computer starts up or the changes to critical system files will have be removed and restored.  You need to still need to scan your computer after the system restore with an updated Anti-virus and / or Malware scanner.

To perform a system restore:
Windows Vista / 7  Start / (all) Programs / Accessories / System Tools / System Restore. Restore your computer to an earlier date and time (when your computer was not infected).
Windows 8 / 10  – Control Panel / Recovery / Open System Restore

Malwarebytes (free edition Scanner – Purchased …

Read More