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Technical Support

I cannot connect to a wireless network

My laptop does not turn on

My laptop crashes when in Windows

I keep getting a blue screen with white writing

The battery in my laptop does not last very long

Windows says that I need to Activate

Where is my Product Key?

How do I open Device Manager?

What do I do with the disk that came with my Laptop?

How do I restore Windows?

I cant watch DVDs

I think I have a virus

 



 I Cannot Connect to a Wireless Network

Every laptop that leaves our workshop has had its wireless connectivity tested, and it is very rare that there is a problem with the physical adapter in your laptop. Therefore if you are having connectivity problems it is likely that these can be resolved quickly and simply.

Firstly check the following:

  • You have entered the correct wireless security key (supplied by your ISP, or set by you)
  • You have a wireless enabled router
  • The wireless adapter in your laptop is switched on (refer to the user guide as to how to do this)

If you have checked these, and are still having problems then try the following:

  • Determine the type of wireless adapter you have in your laptop. This information can be found in Device Manager, under Network Adapters.
  • If you have an Intel wireless adapter, follow this link http://www.intel.com/support/wireless/wlan/sb/cs-006205.htm which provides instructions on turning up the power on your adapter.
  • If you have a Dell or Broadcom wireless adapter check with your routers manufacturer as to how to update the your routers firmware. This information can be found on the manufacturers website, or from your ISP

If you are still having difficulties you should check with your routers manufacturer as to how to update the your routers firmware. This information can be found on the manufacturers website, or from your ISP.



 My Laptop Does Not Turn On

If your laptop does not turn on, or it does not turn on fully and lights near the keyboard flash, it is possible that one of the RAM chips installed has become dislodged in transit. There may be one or two RAM chips installed, depending on the amount of memory you ordered and its configuration. To try and resolve this problem, try the following:

  • Ensure the laptop is switched off and disconnected from the mains
  • Turn the laptop over and remove the battery
  • Remove the flap on the base of the laptop ( this may be marked with a M or with a picture of a RAM chip)
  • Remove any RAM chips under this flap by pulling the metal clips apart.
  • Replace the RAM chips, and push them into place - the metal clips will click and lock them into place.
  • Replace the flap, battery, turn the laptop over, plug the mains cable in and turn it on.

If this does not help, or there are no RAM chips on the underside, it is possible that the problem is caused by another RAM chip found under the keyboard. You can try the procedure described above with this chip, but only do so if you are confident you know how. You will be exposing the entire motherboard and can damage your laptop easily.



 My Laptop Crashes When in Windows

If you are experiencing a lot of crashes in Windows try the following:

  • Uninstall any recently installed programs
  • Install an Anti-Virus program and do a full system scan. We can supply a full version of Bullguard Internet Security for just 19.
    To order click here http://www.val-u-computers.co.uk/acatalog/software.html
  • If the above two options do not work, you can run the system restore disk sent with your laptop. This will wipe the hard drive so back up important documents


 I Keep Getting a Blue Screen with White Writing

If you are getting a blue screen it is possible that one of the RAM chips installed has become dislodged in transit. There may be one or two RAM chips installed, depending on the amount of memory you ordered and its configuration. To try and resolve this problem, try the following:

  • Ensure the laptop is switched off and disconnected from the mains
  • Turn the laptop over and remove the battery
  • Remove the flap on the base of the laptop ( this may be marked with a M or with a picture of a RAM chip)
  • Remove any RAM chips under this flap by pulling the metal clips apart.
  • Replace the RAM chips, and push them into place - the metal clips will click and lock them into place.
  • Replace the flap, battery, turn the laptop over, plug the mains cable in and turn it on.

If this does not help, or there are no RAM chips on the underside, it is possible that the problem is caused by another RAM chip found under the keyboard. You can try the procedure described above with this chip, but only do so if you are confident you know how. You will be exposing the entire motherboard and can damage your laptop easily.



 The Battery in My Laptop Does Not Last Very Long

To get the best performance out of the battery, ensure that you have fully charged it and at least twice a month ensure that it is fully charged and allowed to fully discharge.

 Windows Says That I Need to Activate

Windows Activation is Microsofts standard anti-piracy tool. You can activate online or over the phone (0800 number). To activate follow the instructions on-screen provided by the Activation Wizard. You may be prompted to change your product key during this process. This can be found on a sticker called the Certificate of Authenticity which is on the base of your laptop or under the battery. If you have two stickers on the base you will need the Windows 7 "refurbished computer" sticker.



 Where is My Product Key?

This can be found on a sticker called the Certificate of Authenticity which is on the base of your laptop or under the battery.



 How Do I Open Device Manager?

To open the Device Manager press the Windows key (bottom left of the keyboard) and the Pause/Break key (top right of the keyboard). A window titled System Properties will appear. Choose the Hardware tab, and then choose Device Manager.



 What Do I Do with the Disk that Came with My Laptop?

Nothing! This is a system restore disk and should only be used in the event that your Windows installation has become corrupted or you wish to return your laptop to the state it was in when it left our workshop.

Running this disk will wipe the hard drive and remove all data.

 How do I restore Windows?

Built in recovery partition

  • Some of the laptops we sell running Windows 7 contain a built in recovery partition, this can be confirmed at boot up. If at each boot you are given an option to boot into either "Windows 7" or "Recovery system" this means your computer has the recovery partition setup. In this case if you highlight the "Recovery system" using the arrow keys on the keyboard and press the enter key, it should start to boot into the Windows installer.

    Restoring from a disk

  • If your laptop does not have the built in recovery partition, you should have been provided with a backup or restore disk, the process of using this disk varies dependant on your computer's brand.
  • The first step to installing your computer using the provided Windows disk is to insert the disk into the drive, to do this the computer must be powered on, once the disk is inserted into the disk drive please power the computer down completely so there is nothing on the screen. Once this has been done you will need to turn the machine back on and enter into the boot menu, to do this will vary depending on your computer.
  • If your computer is a Dell, you will need to start repeatedly pressing the "F12" key on the keyboard as soon as the "Dell" logo appears (the first screen after powering on), this should then proceed to show the boot menu.
  • If your computer is a IBM, you will need to start repeatedly pressing the "F12" key on the keyboard as soon as the "IBM / Lenovo" logo appears (the first screen after powering on), this should then proceed to show the boot menu.
  • If your computer is a HP, you will need to start repeatedly pressing the "F9" key on the keyboard as soon as the "HP" logo appears (the first screen after powering on), this should then proceed to show the boot menu.
  • Once you are at the boot menu, you will need to highlight the item in the list that refers to the disk drive on your computer, it may be listed as "CD/DVD Drive, Optical Drive, Expansion bay" or similar, to do this you can use the up and down arrow keys on the keyboard, once highlighted press the enter key on the keyboard. Shortly after pressing the enter key you should be presented with either "Windows is loading files" or "Press any key to boot from CD", if you get the "Press any key" message you will need to immediately press a couple of keys, you should then be presented with the "Windows is loading files" message.
  • Once booted into the Windows installer you will need to answer some basic questions such as language and timezone. You will then be asked where you would like to install Windows to, you will need to choose "Advanced" and delete all of the partitions until the only device available to install to is "Disk 0 Unallocated Space", then select this area and continue. Windows will now start to install and will reboot several times. Once windows is installed it will ask you a couple more questions such if you would like to set a "Username" and "Password" and finally the installer will ask you for the product key for Windows, the product key is normally available on a sticker on the base of the laptop or underneath the battery, it will contain 5 blocks of 5 characters. Once you have done this Windows will then proceed to boot to the desktop.



     I Cant Watch DVDs

    Try the following:

    • Check your drive is capable of reading DVDs and not just CDs. For Dell laptops you can slide the drive out of the laptop by pressing the large eject button on the bottom right of the front of the drive and pulling it out. There will be a description of the drive on top as you slide it out.
    • Download and install a program called VLC, found herehttp://www.videolan.org/vlc/


     I Think I Have a Virus

    If you have not installed anti-virus software and have been downloading software from the Internet it is likely that you have a virus, or some form of malware. You should install an anti-virus program and run a full system scan. We can supply a full version of Bullguard Internet Security for just 19. To order click here http://www.val-u-computers.co.uk/acatalog/software.html