How to Fix a Detected Hard Disk Problem

So, how do you fix the Windows detected a hard disk problem error in your PC? We are going to look at two ways to resolve this error.

Note! It is recommended to exit all running programs. Also, you may want to backup your important documents and files to an external drive or cloud storage.

This for for the Windows 10 operating system, other versions will be similar.

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Related

How to Check Your Hard Drive Status

Open a Command Prompt

First, we have to open an administrative Command Prompt by using the Start menu. Click Start, type command in the Cortana search bar and you’ll see the Command Prompt menu options on the right. Now, just click the Run as administrator option. Refer to below image:

HD Problem 1
The Command Prompt option to run as administrator

If you get the User Account Control dialog box, just click the Yes button.

Using the System File Checker Utility

To preview the available options in using this utility, type in sfc help and press Enter. See below image:

HD Problem 2
The help screen for System File Checkder

We are going to opt in for the scannow option. Now, type in sfc /scannow and press Enter. This may take a little while, so be patient. Before you close this Command Prompt window, ensure that it is 100% complete. See following image for a result similar to yours:

HD Problem 3
The result of running System File Checker

This option will scan all protected system files and replace all corrupted files with a backup copy. After the process is 100% finished, exit the Command Prompt, restart your machine and see if the problem is resolved. Notice, I had corrupted files that the utility resolved.

If you are still experiencing problems, lets try the second method to fix the error.

Using the Check Disk Utility

To preview the available options in using this utility, first open the Command Prompt and select the Run as administrator option as noted in the first image above. Then type in help chkdsk and press Enter. See below image:

HD Problem 4
The help screen for Check Disk Utility

First, lets scan your main volume, or drive C. Type in chkcsk C: /scan and press Enter. Refer to below image for results similar to yours:

HD Problem 6
Running a scan of a hard drive partition

If the scan shows no errors, then you are finished and your hard drive should be funcational. If not, we are going to opt in for several options as follows:

/f – fixes errors on the selected volume

/r – locates bad sectors and recovers readable information

/x – forces the volume to dismount first if necessary. Imples using the /f option.

Now, type in chkdsk C: /f/r/x and press the Enter key.

You may receive the following screen denoting that chkdsk needs to run after a restart. If so, respond with a y, exit the Command Prompt and restart your device. See below image:

HD Problem 5
Repairing a hard drive partition using Check Disk Utility after a restart

If you need to check and fix a hard drive problem on other partitions, replace the drive letter C: with those partition letter (s).

Getting Rid of the Hard Disk Failure Message

Sometimes the message Windows detected a hard disk problem pops up even when there are no errors with the hard disk. In order to not be annoyed by this, you can follow the steps below to disable it.

First, open the Run dialog box by pressing Windows+R key. Then type in gpedit.msc and click OK. Refer to below image:

HD Problem 7
Starting the Group Policy Editor using the Run command

Next, head to Administrative Templates > System > Troubleshooting and Diagnostics > Disk Diagnostics. Then double-click on Disk Diagnostics: Configure execution level on the right pane. See below image:

HD Problem 8
Finding the error message location for detected hard drive error

Now, click on Disabled option and click OK. See following image:

HD Problem 9
Diabling the hard drive error detected message.

Finally, exit the dialog box and restart your PC. Your hard drive should now be fixed. If the error message no longer appears, navigate back to the image above and click the Enabled option, then exit and restart your machine. Congratulations, you are finished.

I Would Like to Hear From You

Please feel free to leave a comment. I would love hearing from you. Do you have a computer or smart device tech question? I will do my best to answer your inquiry. Please mention the device, app and version that you are using. To help us out, you can send screenshots of your data related to your question.

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How to Show Explorer’s Preview Pane in Windows 10

It is easy to preview files without opening them in Windows 10, thanks to the Preview Pane feature in File Explorer. You can see thumbnails of most images, videos, audio files and some text-based documents. Lets see how to do this.

You may have heard about a security flaw in using the preview pane, but that was fixed in Windows 10 update released on April 14, 2020. If you have the latest updates, it’s safe to use.

This is for Windows 10 operating system

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Opening File Explorer

There are at least three ways to access the File Explorer:

  1. Open File Explorer by pressing Windows+E
  2. Click the Explorer folder icon in your taskbar
  3. Click the Explorer option in your Start menu

Accessing the Preview Pane

In the menu bar at the top of the File Explorer window, click View. See below image:

File Explorer Preview 1
Selecting the View option

Find Preview pane option in the upper-left of the toolbar and click on it. Refer to below image:

File Explorer Preview 2
Selecting the Preview pane option

The Preview pane will be highlighted and is now activated. Navigate the File Explorer to a folder that has documents you’d like to preview. When you select a file, you will see its preview thumbnail in the right side of the window. See following image:

File Explorer Preview 3
The results of Previw pane option displayed on the right

Accessing the Details Pane

File Explorer also has a related feature called Details Pane. To turn it on, click View in the Explorer menu bar, then click the Details pane option in the toolbar (it’s right below the Preview pane option). Refer to below image:

File Explorer Preview 4
Selecting the Details pane option

When you highlight a file with Details pane turned on, you will see a tiny thumbnail (for applicable file types) and some details about the file, such as its size, date created, date modified, etc. in the right portion of the window. See following image:

File Explorer Preview 5
The results of Details pane option displayed on the right

To return to the normal view of File Explorer, first, you have to click on View, then, either click the Preview or Details pane option depending on which one is highlighted.

You also have other options under the View tab to see your contents; like the size of your icons; extra large, large, medium and small, as well as by list, details, tiles and content.

Keyboard Shortcuts

It’s also possible to quickly toggle the Preview and Details panes using keyboard shortcuts. First, open File Explorer, then use the below shortcuts:

  1. Press Alt+P to open or close the Preview pane
  2. Press Alt+Shift+P to open or close the Details pane

That its. You have successfully explored two seldom used options of the File Explorer in Windows 10.

I Would Like to Hear From You

Please feel free to leave a comment. I would love hearing from you. Do you have a computer or smart device tech question? I will do my best to answer your inquiry. Please mention the device, app and version that you are using. To help us out, you can send screenshots of your data related to your question.

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How to Use a Virtual Device in Windows 10

In Windows 10, it’s easy to enable and use a virtual device, like a keyboard. This is super handy if you have a touch screen device. There are times when using a mouse or touchpad is inconvenient and problematic with kids or pets squirming on your lap.

This how-to guide shows you how to enable and use the virtual interface built into Windows 10.

This is for Windows 10 operating system

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Enable the Virtual Device

It’s super easy to enable the virtual interface. Just right-click on any open area of your Taskbar and select Show touch keyboard button. Refer to below image:

Virtual Device 1
View the touch keyboard option

You should now see a keyboard icon in the Taskbar tray. See below image:

Virtual Device 2
Showing the touch keyboard icon

Use the Virtual Device

To bring up a virtual keyboard, click on that icon.

If you have a touch display, you may now tap the keys with your finger or use your mouse or touchpad for selecting the keys. To close the virtual keyboard, click the X in upper right hand corner. See following image:

Virtual Device 3
The default touch keyboard

To change the default setting, you can tap or click one of the icons in upper left hand corner. There are three keyboard layouts to choose from, including a full QWERTY keyboard. See below image:

Virtual Device 4
The QWERTY touch keyboard

You can opt to enable your microphone for the interface dictation or select one of the touchpad options. There is also an option to choose a different language for your virtual keyboard.

I Would Like to Hear From You

Please feel free to leave a comment. I would love hearing from you. Do you have a computer or smart device tech question? I will do my best to answer your inquiry. Please mention the device, app and version that you are using. To help us out, you can send screenshots of your data related to your question.

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How to Enable Developer Settings to Control Windows 10

Several of the more powerful applications, tools and utilities available in Windows 10 are locked behind disabled settings and a labyrinth of configurations menus. We can reach some of these power tools through Developer Settings. Lets get started.

This is for Windows 10 devices

Copyright Scott Adams, Inc./Distributed by Universal Uclick for UFS

Access Developer Settings

  1. Click the Start button
  2. Select Settings (the gear icon)
  3. Select Update & Security
  4. Select For Developers

My wifes computer always wants to only install apps from the Microsoft Store. To turn this off, select Sideload apps which allows third party apps to be installed

I suggest you leave Developer mod setting disabled

Device Portal and Device Discovery is to see, configure and manage your PC remotely over a network or USB connection. Unless you have a need for this, leave the features unchecked. See following image:

Win 10 Developers 1
For Developers screen

To view or change the other features, scroll down the right pane (For Developers)

The File Explorer

Note! In the File Explorer, Remote Desktop and Powershell sections, click the Show Settings blue link to view or change the setting. If you change a setting, remember to click OK at the bottom of the dialog box to save your change.

These options will be familar to power users. The benefits of the settings are fairly self-explanatory. Refer to below image:

Win 10 Developers 2
For Developers File Explorer screen

Click Apply to save any changes

Remote Desktop Functions

Remote access to a workstation connected to a local enterprise network through a VPN is often required. To enable a secure remote connection, these settings must be enabled. See following image:

Win 10 Developers 3
For Developers Remote Access screen

Click Apply to save any changes

The Powershell

This allows developers to run special utility scripts that have no certificate associated with them. If you are not running Powershell scripts on a regular basis, its best to leave the setting disabled. Refer to following image:

Win 10 Developers 4
For Developers Powershell screen

Click Apply to save any changes

While many of the configurationn settings located in the For Developers section can be managed from other configuration menus and screens, in Windows 10 they are conviently located in a central location. In previous versions of Windows, power users had to track down these settings. Now, they are in one place.

I Would Like to Hear from You

Please feel free to leave a comment. I would love hearing from you. Do you have a computer or smart device tech question? I will do my best to answer your inquiry. Please mention the device, app and version that you are using. To help me out, you can send screenshots of your data related to your question.

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How to Disable/Enable the Insert Key in Windows 10

The Insert Key was needed in early versions of Windows. In our modern day of Windows, the key is no longer needed. Now, we just place our cursor where we want to insert text and start typing. If we use the Insert Key, our text is overwritten. This can be frustrating as we find ourselves clicking Undo and starting over.

Every key has a corresponding key scan code that tells Windows how to handle the keystroke. We can find this code and change it to a null character in the Windows Registry, which disables the key.

Instead of editing the Registry directly, we are going to use a free software utility to perform this task.

Note! You should first create a backup of the Registry. See my blog post on Wise Registry Cleaner on how create a backup or click this link to download and install the free Regbak software.

This is for desktop/laptop using Windows 10. SharpKeys will run on Vista through Windows 10.

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Running Regbak Software

First, open and run the program. Next, click on the New Backup button to create a Registry backup. Refer to below image:

Regbak 1
Selecting a new backup

A backup dialog box will appear. Here you can chose a Backup Folder. It is recommended you use the default. Next, give the backup a Description of your choice, then click Start. See below image:

Regbak 2
Chosing the backup location and entering a description

When the program has finished, you will receive a message at the top of the screen that the backup operation has completed. At the bottom of the dialog box, check for the mesage that the operation finished successfully. Now, click Close. See following image:

Regbak 3
Completing the process

A final dialog box will appear showing your newly created Registry backup entry. Additionally, by highlighting an entry you can either Restore or Delete a Registry backup. Click Close to end the program. Refer to below image:

Regbak 4
Exit the program

SharpKeys Overview

SharpKeys is free software for you to edit specific Registry entries. It uses a Graphical User Interface (GUI) to remap keys on your keyboard. This software makes it easy to edit the Registry without using the built-in Registry Editor. Using the Editor is time consuming and error prone.

Download and Install

Open your browser and click this link to download and install SharpKeys. You can download the file in Microsoft Installer (MSI) or Zip format; the easiest method is using the MSI.

Using SharpKeys

Note! This program requires Administrative Privileges to run. Please open the program as an Administrator by right-clicking on the program under Start, and click on More > Run as Administrator.

Once the program is running, click the Add button. See below image:

SharpKeys 1
Opening the program

Scroll through the list on the left and click on Special: Insert (E0_52). Next, click on Turn Key Off (00_00) from the list on the right. To remap the Insert Key, click OK. Refer to below image:

SharpKeys 2
Selecting the Insert Key to be remapped

The value in parentheses is the key scan code associated with it. We are replacing the Insert Key code of E0_52 to a non-existence code of 00_00, which will disable the key.

Next, click the Write to Registry button. The software will add the new code for the Insert Key to the Registry for you. See following image:

SharpKeys 3
Write the null key scan code to the Registry

To complete the process, click OK. Refer to below image:

SharpKeys 4
Restart message

To exit the program, click Close. See below image:

SharpKeys 5
Exit the program

For the changes to take effect, you will need to log out or restart your computer.

You can use SharpKeys to remap a host of other keyboard characters.

Undoing Your Change

If you have made no other changes, you can use Wise Registry Cleaner or Regbak to restore the Registry depending on which software you used to create a Registry backup. If you have made other changes and wish to restore the Insert Key function, those changes will be lost.

Another method is using the Registry Editor to reenable the Insert Key function. This method is very technical, frustrating and error prone; so I don’t recommend doing this.

I Would Like to Hear From You

Please feel free to leave a comment. I would love hearing from you. Do you have a computer or smart device tech question? I will do my best to answer your inquiry. Please mention the device, app and version that you are using. To help us out, you can send screenshots of your data related to your question.

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How to Remove Malware for Windows

If your Windows computer is being redirected to unwanted sites, advertisements are popping up while you browse the Internet, or a message saying a virus was detected, then it is possible that you have malware installed on your computer.

This is for Windows 7 through 10, also applies to Macs and mobile devices. The wording in this post is for Windows 10

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Malware refers to any type of malicious software that tries to infect a computer or mobile device. Hackers use malware for any number of reasons such as, extracting personal information or passwords, stealing money or preventing owners from accessing their device.

Malware includes computer viruses, ransomware, worms, trojan horses, rootkits, keyloggers, dialers, spyware, adware, malicious BHOs, rogue security software and other malicious programs. The majority of malware threats are usually worms or trojans rather than viruses.

Following are some examples of an infected PC:

  1. Your web browser (e.g., Microsoft Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome) freezes, hangs or is unresponsive
  2. You get redirected to web pages other than the one you intended to go to
  3. You receive numerous web-browser popup messages
  4. Strange or unexpected toolbars appear at the top of your web browser
  5. Your computer runs slower than usual
  6. Your computer freezes, hangs or is unresponsive
  7. Your computer restarts by itself (but not a restart caused by Windows Updates)
  8. You see unusual error messages (e.g., messages saying there are missing or corrupt files folders)

For several months, I had malware that crashed my PC on a daily basis. I read lots of help articles and followed its advice. I soon came to realize that no one piece of software will remove the malware. In my case, the virus would attach itself to a Dell executable (exe) file. I located the suspected file and renamed it, no luck here. So, I deleted the file; the suspected file would recreate itself with the virus attached. I did a scan of the Registry to find the infected file, it was not found. What the heck is going on? Then I came across an in-depth article on removing malware. In summary, to remove the malware, perform the following:

Restart your machine and stop all running programs

Download, install and run the following programs one at a time in order as shown below. There is a free or trial version for each software. Do not install any third-party tools associated with the installs. The softare title and links are as follows:

Malwarebytes

Avast

HitmanPro

Zemana

Now, restart your machine. The malware should be eliminated. Since this is a one-time removal, uninstall each program. If left installed and active, they will interfere with each other and cause other problems.

I Would Like to Hear From You

Please feel free to leave a comment. I would love hearing from you. Do you have a computer or smart device tech question? I will do my best to answer your inquiry. Please mention the device, app and version that you are using. To help us out, you can send screenshots of your data related to your question.

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How to Change Your Name on Windows 10 Log-In Screen

Whenever you log-in to Windows 10, your name appears above the password entry. What if you want to change your name? This post addresses this issue.

Whether you use a local account or a Microsoft Account, it’s relative easy to change your display name.

This is for Windows 10 devices

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Changing Your Display Name for a Microsoft Account

To change you name for a Microsoft Account, you need to open your account preferences on the Microsoft website.

Opens the Settings app by pressing the Windows key+I or type in Settings in the Cortana search field, then click the Settings app at top of the screen. Then click on the Accounts option. Refer to below image:

Change Login Name 1
Selecting your Accounts option

Below your name and photo, click on Manage my Microsoft account. See following image:

Change Login Name 2
Selecting Manange my Microsoft account

Signin to your Microsoft Account if not already signed. This will open your account preferences in your browser. After your browser opens, click the More Actions drop-down box, then click on Edit Profile from the options list. See below image:

Change Login Name 3
Selecting Edit Profile

Below your name, click Edit Name. Refer to below image:

Change Login Name 4
Selecting Edit your name

Enter your first and last name, solve the CAPTCHA challenge, then click Save to update your name. See following image:

Change Login Name 5
Changing your firsr and/or last name and entering the CAPTCHA letters

When your Profile page reloads, it will update with the name change.

Note! When you change your Microsoft Account name, it changes on all devices that you use to log-in with this account.

For your new name to show on your Windows 10 log-in screen, you will have to log out of Windows 10. Be sure to save any unsaved work or applications before signing out.

Changing Your Display Name for a Local Account

A local account is a basic approach in using Windows 10. Local accounts don’t have the added features like syncing files, settings, browser history, etc. across multiple devices.

If you want to change your local account name, fire up the Control Panel. In the Cortana search box, type in Control Panel then click on the Control Panel app at the top of the screen.

Next click on the User Accounts option. Refer to below image:

Change Login Name 6
Selecting User Accounts from the Control Panel

Now click on User Accounts one more time. See below image:

Change Login Name 7
Selecting User Accounts again

Now, select Change your account name option to change your log-in name. See following image:

Change Login Name 8
Selection for changing your account name

Note: If an organization manages your device or you don’t have administrator privileges, you won’t be able to change your name.

Enter the new log-in name into the text field, then click the Change Name button to save your changes. Refer to below image:

Change Login Name 9
Changing your log-in name

You are done and may now close the Control Panel window. For your new name to show on your Windows 10 log-in screen, you will have to log out of Windows 10. Be sure to save any unsaved work or applications before signing out.

I Would Like to Hear From You

Please feel free to leave a comment. I would love hearing from you. Do you have a computer or smart device tech question? I will do my best to answer your inquiry. Please mention the device, app and version that you are using. To help me out, you can send screenshots of your data related to your question.

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How to Check Your Hard Drive Status

Your hard drive has been acting strange. It’s making clicking or screeching sounds, it’s unable to find files, crashes on boot, slow transfer speed or seems to be moving slowly. Your hard drive is dying.

Since it is a mechanical device it has moving parts unlike a Solid State Device (SSD) which has none. But even a SSD will eventually fail.

Even if your hard drive is healthy, over time, it will die. You should keep an eye on it’s health once in a while for your peace of mind. Let’s see how to do this.

This is for Windows 10 devices and Macs

Copyright Scott Adams, Inc./Distributed by Universal Uclick for UFS

The Drive’s SMART Status

Most modern drives have a feature called S.M.A.R. T. (Self-Monitoring, Analysis and Reporting Technology) that monitors different drive attributes in an attempt to detect a failing disk. That way, your computer will automatically notify you before data loss occurs and the drive can be replaced while it still remains functional.

Check in Windows

In Windows 10, you can manually check the S.M.A.R.T. status of your drives from the Command Prompt. Just right-click the Start button, select Run, and type “cmd“, then click OK or type “cmd” into the Cortana search bar, then click OK. In the Command Prompt pop-up box, type:

wmic diskdrive get model,status

It will return “Pred Fail” if your drive’s death is imminent; “Bad”, “Unknown” or “Caution” if its time to take care of a drive or “OK” if it thinks a drive is doing fine. Refer to below image:

Hard Drive Status
Checking your hard drives health

Check on a Mac

On a Mac, you can check S.M.A.R.T. status by opening the Disk Utility program, clicking on the drive and looking at “S.M.A.R.T. Status” in the bottom left, which will either read “Verified” or “Failing”.

SMART Status can be Misleading

However, this basic S.M.A.R.T. information can be misleading. You only know when your drive is near death, but you can start to experience problems even if the basic S.M.A.R.T. status is okay.

You can also use Defraggler program I discussed in a previous post. When you use the Analyze feature of the program, it will show your disk health. Click here for the post on using Defraggler.

Manufacture Check

If you want an even deeper, more accurate picture into your drive’s health, check its manufacturer’s website for a dedicated tool; for example, Seagate has SeaTools for its drives, Western Digital has Data Lifeguard Diagnostic for its drives and Samsung has Samsung Magician for its SSDs. These tools can sometimes take into account certain technologies specific to their hard drives and SSDs.

Note! You may find that the SeaTools (Seagate) utility is the only software you will need. In the below image, it can diagnose Samsung, Western Digital as well as Seagate using several methods:

Hard Drive Status 2
SeaTools for Windows options

Is Your Drive Almost Dead

Drives with the “Pred Fail” status won’t necessarily fail tomorrow. They could chug along for a year or be dead as a doornail in a few days if not hours.

If you’re getting warnings, it’s time to back up your files before your drive fails. Failure to act may cost you serious money to recover your data.

Now is not the time for a full backup, however: you don’t want to stress the drive with too many reads or it could fail while you’re backing up. Instead, plug in an external drive and copy your most important files onto it; family photos, work documents and anything else that can’t easily be replaced. Then, once you know those are safe, you can try doing a full drive clone with something like EaseUS Todo Backup Free.

I got a S.M.A.R.T. status of “Pred Fail” on my main hard drive. I quickly backed up my important files to an external drive. I never finished before it died. I tried the trick off turning my desktop on its side, then upside down. I got a little more life from the hard drive. Then I removed the hard drive and gently shook the device. I could hear the spindle sliding; then I knew if was totally dead. But it’s worth trying this trick.

Is Your Drive Dead

If your hard drive has already stopped working, things get a lot tougher and you’ll probably need a professional data recovery service which can cost $1,000 or more. But if you have pricelrss data on the drive, it may be worth it to you.

Prepare for Hard Drive Failure

It’s not a matter of “if” your hard drive will fail; it’s a matter of “when”. All hard drives fail eventually and if you want to avoid losing all your important files, you absolutely have to back up your computer regularly; including when the drive is healthy.

Take some time to set up an automatic, cloud based backup like Google Backup and Sync using Google Drive. It is one of the best things you can do to protect yourself from heartache later on. Or at least back up to an external drive using Windows 10 built-in File History Tool.

If your drive failed catastrophically with no warning, you can get back up and running in no time by having an up-to-date backup.

I Would Like to Hear from You

Please feel free to leave a comment. I would love hearing from you. Do you have a computer or smart device tech question? I will do my best to answer your inquiry. Please mention the device, app and version that you are using. To help me out, you can send screenshots of your data related to your question.

The author’s Vietnam eBook on the Battle for Tra Bong: Events and Aftermath

Twelve Run Commands for Windows 10

If you know the right keyboard shortcut and the right commands, the Windows 10 Run command can be a powerful tool. Lets explore 12 Run commands everyone should know.

With a simple keyboard shortcut and a few keystrokes, you can reach your destination before other users can click their mouse on the right icon.

The key is learning and knowing these common Run commands.

The examples are for Windows 10 operating system. Also works for Windows 7 and Windows 8.

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Open the Run Command Dialog Box

To use these commands we need to bring up the Run command dialog box. There are two comman ways of doing this as follows:

1. Right click the Start menu icon and select the Run command from a list
2. Use the keyboard shortcut by selecting and holding the Window icon button and press the “R” key. See following image:

Win 10 Run 1
The Run dialog box

You will simply enter your Run command and press the Enter key or press OK.

The Run Commands

Note! The quotation marks are for emphasis only; they are not part of the command itself and should not be included in the Run command box. Also, the Run remembers your command(s).

1.“\” – Open the default drive, usually drive “C
This will display the contents of your default configuration to include your Quick Access library. The presumption is that this is where your documents, photos and other files can be most easily found. At times you may just want to open File Explorer to the main hard drive root folder.

2. “.” – Open the Home folder of the current user
This command will open the Home folder for the current user.

3. “..” – Open the Users folder
Typing two periods (“..”) will open File Explorer in the Users folder, giving quick access to all the user’s folders, providing you have the proper credentials. This is a good command for performing system administrative tasks.

4. “control” – Open the Control Panel
Windows 10 has placed many of the common configuration settings into an area known as Settings, which can be found as an entry in the Start menu. While this is fine for many configuration settings, there are times when you have to load the full Windows 10 Control Panel. On those occasions, type control into the Run command box. Refer to below image:

Win 10 Run 2
The Control Panel

5. “msconfig” – Open System Configuration
The System Configuration app is a holdover from previous versions of the Windows operating system, but it is still useful for Windows 10. This command will open an app that grants you access to boot variations including certain startup services during the boot sequence. Also, their are many options to view, add or change under the Tools tab. See following image:

Win 10 Run 3
System Configuration screen

6. “appwiz.cpl” – Open Programs and Features
Lets say you want to uninstall a program; you may use this command to do so. Although you can use the Control Panel command to accomplish this task, using this command is much faster. See below image:

Win 10 Run 4
Uninstall a program

7. “cleanmgr” – Open Disk Cleanup utility
Another holdover from previous versions of Windows is the Disk Cleanup utility. Most disk cleanup processes in Windows 10 are handled automatically behind the scenes, but there are occasions where you may want to perform disk cleanup manually. Refer to below image:

Win 10 Run 5
Hard disk cleanup

Related

Wise Disk Cleaner is a much better utility for cleaning your Windows device

8. “resmon” – Open Resource Monitor
A utility app that most users ignore, but really shouldn’t, is the Windows 10 Resource Monitor. If your PC starts lagging or the hard drive seems to be spinning up without cause, run this command and troubleshoot the problem. See below image:

Win 10 Run 6
The Resource Monitor

9. “calc”, “notepad”, “mspaint”, etc – Open common apps
Another good use for the Run command is to start basic Microsoft applications that you may not use every day and don’t want on your desktop or taskbar but that you still use from time to time.

10. “main.cpl” – Adjust your mouse settings
One of the first things you need to adjust on a new Windows 10 PC are the mouse settings. A mouse cursor that is too small or moves too slowly across the screen can be frustrating. This is fastest way to get to those settings. Refer to below image:

Win 10 Run 7
Settings for the mouse

11. “mstsc” – Open Remote Desktop
A modern workforce is a mobile workforce, which means many of us have to access our workstation PCs remotely using the Windows 10 Remote Desktop app. See following image:

Win 10 Run 8
Open Remote Desktop

12. “msinfo32” – Access System Information
While troubleshooting problems with help desks, it is not uncommon for the technician to ask for detailed system information. Rather than clicking through several different screens, use this Run command. Refer to below image:

Win10 Run 9
System Ongormation scree

You Don’t Have to Remember the Commands

Tip: As you try these Run commands, you will notice that your previous entry is displayed. You can scroll through all previous commands by using the up and down arrow keys or click the drop down arrow to see your entries. This allows less keystrokes, faster access and best of all, you don’t have to memorize these Run commands. They are available even if you Shutdown or Restart your device.

For more Run commands, click here

I Would Like to Hear from You

Please feel free to leave a comment. I would love hearing from you. Do you have a computer or smart device tech question? I will do my best to answer your inquiry. Please mention the device, app and version that you are using. To help us out, you can send screenshots of your data related to your question.

The author’s Vietnam eBook on the Battle for Tra Bong:Events and Aftermath

How to Find Your Windows 10 Product Key

I recently read a post about finding your Microsoft Windows 10 product key. Microsoft likes to hide it but there are occasions you need to know the key. The key is a 25-characters code, making it virtually impossible to remember.

This is for Windows XP through 10 devices

Dilbert Manager
Copyright Scott Adams, Inc./Distributed by Universal Uclick for UFS

That post gave a long command to use and a complicated Visual Basic Script (vbs) from an unknown author to be saved as a text file to run. To make things even more complicated, using two methods, the author showed two different keys. But there is a pain free way to find the key that I posted about using Belarc Advisor. This free software program is among the best to provide a detailed inventory of your device’s hardware and software.

Here is the link for installing and running the free Belarc Advisor program.

Scroll down the report till you see the Software Licenses section. There you will find your Windows product key plus other software keys. See below image:

Belarc Advisor Software Keys

I Would Like to Hear from You

Please feel free to leave a comment. I would love hearing from you. Do you have a computer or smart device tech question? I will do my best to answer your inquiry. Please mention the device, app and version that you are using. To help me out, you can send screenshots of your data related to your question.

The author’s Vietnam eBook on the Battle for Tra Bong: Events and Aftermath