Friday, July 02, 2004

From The Emerald City

The Emerald City

The Wizard is taking some time off. I'll be back posting sometime around July 20th. The Wizard is tired and needs some rest. I will be conversing and otherwise hobknobbing with my brother wizards.

In the meantime, check out the archives! I am sure that you have missed some great posts!

See you soon.

Thursday, July 01, 2004

Happy Canada Day, Eh?

Happy Canada Day
Click above to find out why!

"Sorry, I Farted!"

Sorry, I farted
Click above to listen.

Women, As Explained By Engineers...

No Offence meant to the fairer sex. This is solely to entertain. Any comments? Please click on 'Comment"

Hazardous Materials Sheet on Women
Hazardous Materials Sheet for Women.
(All Men should carry this in your wallets, in case of emergency.)

Chance of winning an arguement with Women
Chance of men winning an argument with a woman.

How to give a woman an orgasm vs. a man
The difference in amount of effort to give a man an oragsm vs. a woman.

Difference between Men and women and a shopping trip
Difference between a shopping trip for men and women.

*Thanks, Daryn =)

Ask The Wizard (Slow Running PC, Spontaneous Rebooting)

The Wizard Of 'OZ' Dear Wizard of 'OZ',

My computer seems to be running very slowly. How can I speed it up?


Speed Freak

Dear Speeder Wannabe,

The solution can range from some simple maintenance to hardware repair/upgrade or even a combination. Here are some common things you can do to improve system performance.

1. Run a thorough scan disk.
Errors in the files on your hard drive can reduce performance as can a hard drive that is developing physical errors. Scan disk will repair many of the file errors on your hard drive. Running the thorough scan disk will also check the hard drive for physical errors. Remember, depending on the size of your hard drive this can take a lot of time and you cannot do anything else at the computer.

2. Delete temporary files from your hard drive.
Temporary files are usually the files left over after installing a program and can be safely deleted.

3. Clean your internet browser cache.
Cache files are those left over from your browsing experience. They mostly consist of images that your browser had to download in order to display on a web page you are viewing.

4. Defrag the files on your hard drive.
Defrag arranges the files on your hard drive so that they can be accessed more efficiently. This has two advantages. One, your system operates more efficiently. Two, your hard drive will last longer because it will not have to work as hard to access files.

5. Perform a virus scan.
Many viruses use so much of your system’s resources that they will greatly degrade performance. Some will even crash your system completely. Make sure your virus definitions are up to date and run a complete virus scan of your system. This should be done weekly.

6. Check your system for spyware/adware.
Many websites install spyware/adware on your system without your knowledge. These can be as simple as cookies that track where you surf to actual programs that give others access to your computer. There are many utility programs that you can download to scan for these files.

7. Clean the dust out of your computer.
It seems too simple but just having a dirty computer can slow it down. If there is an excessive buildup of dust inside your computer, it will cause a heat buildup. This heat buildup will degrade performance as well accelerate wear and tear on the parts inside your computer which can lead to the premature failure of a critical part. Remember to unplug your computer before opening the case. Also, remember to NOT bump any of the internal parts with the vacuum to prevent damage.

These steps are something that we can all try if our system is running slow. If these do not get the performance of your system back to where you think it should be then a few more things can be tried. Many utility programs will perform deep checks on your system’s registry as well as look for missing shortcuts and even missing Windows files.

Another possibility is that there are too many programs starting when you turn on your computer. In Windows 98SE or XP (both home and pro) this is easy to check using the msconfig utility. From the ‘run’ command type ‘msconfig’ and hit the enter key. This will bring up the Windows Configuration Utility where you can check what is starting with Windows and it gives you the option of turning off the auto startup of many programs. In other versions of Windows (95, NT, 2000) it would be best to have someone with a good working knowledge of the Windows Registry service your computer.

If all this fails then you may need to reformat your hard drive or upgrade hardware. Remember too that you always have the option of taking your system in to a qualified service technician. Sometimes spending a little extra money will save you hours and hours of headaches or worse yet, the loss of data.

Hope this helps.


The Wizard.

Dear Wizard of 'OZ',

I have an older model Gateway 2000 E 3110 that for some unknown reason all of the sudden began to shut down and turn on rapidly by itself. I have no clue what may be causing this.

I suspect the power supply, but have heard that some viruses may also cause this. Not sure though.

Please help!



Dear Baffled,

I'm not sure it's a virus. I know that there is a sasser variant that will shut the system down, but not make it power on and off rapidly.

I would certainly be most suspecious of the power supply. One test you can try is opening the case and unplugging power from some of the peripherals such as the cd rom and hard drive, boot the computer and see if it remains on.

An overheated processor will shutdown the computer. Check your processor cooling fan.

It sounds like it is definately a hardware problem. Processor, motherboard or even just the power switch could be causing it. The problem is that with the age of this computer and the cost of new systems it may not be worth fixing if the motherboard is the problem.

Hope this helps,


The Wizard.