12 October 2008

Vista – Disabling UAC and LUAFV Driver (2.0)

I'm sure a lot of people suffer through the annoying time dealing with the ridiculous Windows Vista "User Account Control" also known as the 'ask before you do anything' boxes that pop up when you pretty much try to do anything with Vista. Today I'll be walking you through how to turn off that annoying popup so that you can get back to doing something more productive. Windows UAC was developed to stop programs from executing without your knowledge as a safety and security feature that is actually quite effective, but while produced with noble intentions Microsoft created a monster that was unfit for a Mary Shelley novel as the overbearing UAC prompts you multiple times to open a program or if that program in turn opens another program. Myself being someone who's on the computer a lot I really couldn't deal with it so I turned it off pretty much right away. The problem with this is that when I started Windows up again my boot up was noticeably (45 seconds – 1 minute) longer. Searching through the internet I found that some people experience this after turning UAC off and it can be remedied by turning off the driver that enables its function (LUAFV) today we'll walk through turning off both of these features as to maximize your performance and minimize the strife. This is rated at a 2.0 because there is a possibility while editing the single registry value that you need to edit that you will somehow mysteriously and magically corrupt your computer. It's a long shot but if you don't know anything about computers I wouldn't recommend trying at least the driver part, you should be fine with disabling UAC. This entire process should take less than five minutes and WILL make your computer less secure. You have been warned.

First things first open your start menu and click on control panel, when your control panel menu comes up click the search box and type "UAC" or "User Account Control". Hit search and the option under "User accounts" should read "Turn User Account Control on or Off" Click this option and then in the next screen uncheck the box that says "Use User Account Control" and then hit OK. You'll be prompted for a restart and if you don't plan on changing the registry value then you should. If you're sticking around to turn off LUAFV then see the paragraph below.

Disabling LUAFV requires only one value change in the registry and can be done in less than a minute. First open your start menu and click on the search tab in the bottom in that box type "Command Prompt" and the command prompt shortcut will popup. Click the shortcut and type "regedit" there will be things preceding this (a directory) but it doesn't matter. The registry editor will come up and you simply navigate through HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/SYSTEM/CurrentControlSet/Services/luafv. Once you get into this directory open the "Start" value and change it to 4 this disables the loading of LUAFV and should reduce boot time by around 30 seconds. I hope this helps!


26 September 2008

Post Difficulty Rating System

Hey everyone,
Since the different things I write guides on this site for can greatly vary in difficulty and overall technical knowledge I am implementing a rating system that goes from zero to five in order to help you find out or at least to help guide you into choosing your projects. The rating will just be a number beside the title and here is a basic breakdown of how the numbers translate to skill (also taken into account is the damage that can be done to your computer/filesystem by doing it improperly)

0-.5 - No previous computer knowledge required

.6-1 - Very basic computer knowledge required(0-.5ers can probably do this but might have some difficulty in following all of the steps)

1.1-1.5 - Should have at least basic knowledge as to what the different parts of a computer do and the function of a driver etc.

1.6-2.5 - A slightly larger block because the next jump is a big one any project in this category most likely requires some advanced knowledge of computers, the OS or the program involved projects 2.0 and above may have the potential of corrupting files or affecting the overall functionality of your computer.

2.6-4.0 - Projects in this region should be carefully done as they can probably seriously affect your computer if done improperly, not all of the projects within this range are necessarily hard but they have a serious risk of causing your computer to cease functioning properly.

4.1-5.0 This difficulty range requires some serious computer knowledge including registry filesystem and advanced windows knowledge any project in this range can seriously harm your computer and is very difficult and should not be done without a proper backup and a restore point.

I hope this helps everyone make their project choices and if any clarification is needed all that you need to do is send me an email at:

Reformatting Windows XP -Pros, Cons and Procedure (2.5)

Now, I'm sure there are people out there like me who have a certain knack for taking a beautifully clean computer out of the box, and stuffing it full of junk, spyware and viruses within a month. (I really do this much too often). Or people who accidentally delete really important windows files ones that are at least necessary for the general function of you computer, why just a few days ago while trying to fix problem A managed in my great wisdom to delete an audio driver or at least some file which required me to return to an old backup. So I decided to write a step by step guide on how to reformat your computer the easiest way I know how.

Before you reformat you should always consider what you're losing versus what you're gaining from a reformat so here are the basics that I've come up with to evaluate whether or not I should reformat.

  • Factory Fresh system (All the crap you've downloaded is gone)
  • Faster system performance
  • You'll probably actually get the drivers you always forget to update
  • Any corrupted drive problems will be fixed
  • Brand spanking new registry
  • Lots of free space
  • All the crap you've downloaded is gone
  • Time consuming
  • Lose any data that isn't backed up (you will forget something)
  • Need a large storage medium for all your movies/Large files/Pictures/Music
  • Lose drivers
overall reformatting is a big decision and if you believe that the pro's outweigh the cons then we can get started. first you need to make sure that you have in your possession at least
  1. Your PC's network card driver (probably came on a CD, if not you can usually find them on the site of your computers manufacturer)
  2. Chipset driver, you can find them the same way as your Network card driver
  3. Windows XP CD AND Windows XP CD-Key
  4. Any driver CD's that came with your computer (Dell has these) this is optional though because with the network and chipset drivers you can do the rest online
  5. A list of your current hardware that will REQUIRE drivers ex. Video card, Sound card, Display drivers etc.
  6. Minimum 1.5-2 hours
OKay so last step before we get started is to make sure that the meaning of a few different words are clearly defines as to prevent some serious misconceptions and serious complications from occurring the first is:

HDD: HDD stands for hard disk drive which is the phsyical drive in your system on which data is written MULTIPLE SYSTEM DRIVES can be on one HDD. For example on my laptop my one HDD I have 2 sytem drives
Partition: A division in HDD's one HDD can be split into multiple partitions that are different system drives. Example: my HDD is both a C:\ drive and a D:\ drive.When I format I'll be formatting my C:/ partition.

Step 1: Alright now that you have all of these things and you're positive that you want to reformat hook up your external storage device (USB key External HDD) and start transferring over files that you'd like to save, pictures documents, videos etc. If you have either multiple drives or multiple partitions in a single drive you can just transfer files between drives (obviously off of the drive(s) that you are formatting).

Step 2: When you are sure you've backed up all of your files (double and triple check but you'll still forget something) restart your computer and enter the boot order/boot menu or BIOS setup when the BIOS in initializing the button you press will be different depending on your computers BIOS.

Step 3: In your BIOS enter the boot order menu and either choose the boot from CD option or change the boot order from HDD to CD, this tells your computer to use the CD as the primary boot device so that it doesn't boot windows from your drive. After you save these settings restart your computer and the option "Press any key to boot from CD.." comes up press any key and the windows setup program will come up. When given the option choose the recovery console and then choose the windows installation (probably the only option there). Enter the administator password (default is leaving it blank). When given a command prompt enter:
The command tells the computer to format the C drive with the NTFS file system. You will be reminded that reformatting will erase all data on the drive and given the choice of Y/N enter Y and hit enter and the formatting will begin. After about twenty minutes it will be finished. After which enter exit to restart your computer.

Step 4: Follow the instructions to set up windows, there is nothing really complicated in this step jjust follow the instructions on sceen and enter your CD key when prompted, you will be given all of the regional cutomization option (country, time zone, language) after that is done windows will start up normally.

Step 5: Time for the driver CD, install the network driver, video drivers and every other driver you have, update and restart. after you've finished all of this I reccomend installing my top 5 programs for windows to maintain sytem longevity and security. (Top 5 Programs for Windows.)

Step 6: Copy back all of your saved files and voila you're good to go and your system should be running factory fresh.

14 August 2008

The Top 5 programs for Windows (0.3)

When I think of my top 5 programs for windows a few very important and very effective ones come to mind and all fall under four categories: Clean, Protect, Repair, Reorganize (CPRR for short) and I think that these are the best programs out there. The greatest thing is that most of these PC saving gems are absolutely free.

1. AVG Anti-virus free edition (http://free.avg.com/) -CP
-AVG Anti-virus is hands down the best anti-virus solution out there, and to boot comes with a free anti-spyware and safesearch program (which identifies unsafe websites on google, and prevents you from accessing phising and fake sites.. Like the Facebook ones so many people are caught by).I felt so strongly about the free version that I decided to buy the internet security package and I've never had a problem with it. The benefits of this program include: Very low background usage, comprehensive scanning not to mention its very simple to use and comes with so much for nothing.

2. Eusing Free registry Cleaner (http://www.eusing.com) -R
-In my experience with registry cleaners (and I've tried many) there is none quicker and more effective than Eusing's free registry cleaner, I wish I had installed it before I started installing certain other programs that I had to reinstall.. a few times. Those slowdowns were absolutely horrible but Eusing fixed that in less than 3 minutes. I can't describe better than that how well this program works.

3. IOBIT SmartDefrag (http://www.iobit.com/iobitsmartdefrag.html#) -R
-I'm sure everyone has used the Windows standard defragmenting tool, or if you haven't you should have and if you have you've seen how long it takes, and how painful it is to put up with while searching around for a solution one day (because with this injury I honestly have nothing better to do) and I came across IOBIT's smart defrag. Not only does it defragment faster than the standard windows defrag, but it also optimizes the drive but ALSO along with those two great features it also (when pc usage is low) defragments as you go saving you time and frustration later on.

4. Mozilla Firefox (www.Getfirefox.com) -P
- Microsoft does a damn fine job making an OS that is easy to use, stable and fast but when it comes to making an internet browser they don't do it that well. I'm not saying internet explorer is bad, but I wouldn't mind it going the way of the dodo. Firefox is secure, faster, more efficient, blocks popups better and is alot nicer looking then IE

5. Mozilla Thunderbird (http://www.mozilla.com/en-US/thunderbird/) -P
- Like Mozilla's Firefox, Thunderbird is unbeatable when it comes to security speed and junk protection. This email client is superb. With a quality spam filter more organizational options and features galor it's a perfect companion to Firefox and like all the others FREE.

I hope some of these programs help people out there, they are always tried and tested by yours truly and I give them all a 10/10 if they do leave a comment positive or negative it'll me much appreciated.

-Chris Nantau

Intro: Welcome to the TechSupport Blog

Welcome to the TechSupport Blog!
Since I'm pretty good with computers and I know alot of people aren't I've decided to set up this blog to answer any questions anyone has about anything to do with computers whether it be overclocking, crashing, updating, upgrading or anything else you can think of just e-mail me at "Nantausblog@gmail.com" and I'll do my very best to answer your questions.