Known Issues

Credit-card extended warranties come in handy

Most experts recommend against paying for an extended warranty when you purchase a PC or peripheral, partly because you may already be covered beyond the vendor’s standard warranty period.

If you used a credit card to buy the system, your card company’s extended warranty could be the key to a free repair or replacement.

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Users of defective HP notebooks get no love

Some laptop vendors, discovering they’d sold machines with chips that overheat, respond by immediately replacing the defective units.

Unfortunately, if you bought one such notebook from certain companies and the motherboard burned itself out just after the warranty expired, you may have found yourself out of luck.

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Dumping Java cache improves browser performance

If your browser takes forever to open, it could be due to an overloaded Java cache.

The Java Control Panel applet lets you clear Java’s temporary Internet cache and reset the default cache size to a more reasonable amount.

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Readers offer more ways to enhance Windows 7

Like pouring hot fudge onto vanilla ice cream, there’s nothing like making a good thing better.

Even with near-universal positive reviews, Windows 7 could still stand some improvements — and Windows Secrets readers know just how to enhance the new OS.

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Early adopter of Windows 7 shares his secrets

For most Windows users, the transition to Windows 7 will be bump-free.

But even if the initial installation goes smoothly, you know there’ll be glitches — some big and some small.

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Tips for avoiding bogus ads in search results

Our
Oct. 8 Top Story
by contributing editor Susan Bradley reported that Google, Bing, and other indexes need to do a better job of policing the ads that appear alongside the search results.

Immediately after Susan’s story was published, describing malware ads that appeared alongside queries on security terms like malwarebytes, such ads temporarily disappeared.

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More tips for avoiding Windows 7 upgrade bumps

For most PC users, the migration to Microsoft’s new version of Windows will go smoothly — with a little preparation.

Spending a few minutes getting your system ready before you insert that Windows 7 installation disc may save you hours of troubleshooting and repair afterward.

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Netbook news on Windows 7 is hype, Woody finds

This week, several tech news sources reported that Microsoft had lifted restrictions on which versions of Windows 7 could be installed on netbooks.

In fact, WS contributing editor Woody Leonhard reported months ago that no such restrictions were in place and that netbook makers could install any version of Win7.

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Some keyloggers can read the Clipboard, too

Several dozen readers responded to WS contributing editor Scott Dunn’s
Sept. 10 Top Story
on keeping your passwords out of the hands of sneaky keyloggers on untrusted PCs you may be forced to use while traveling.

The most frequent suggestion was to copy passwords from a text file and paste them into password boxes, but many keyloggers — unfortunately — capture any text you paste from the Clipboard.

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Add Adobe to the list of update opportunists

Many software vendors see security updates and bug fixes for their applications as a chance to install unrelated — and uninvited — programs onto your PC.

One vendor guilty of this offense — and not cited in Susan Bradley’s
Aug. 13
Top Story on this subject — is Adobe, which preselects the option to install the Google Toolbar along with its Flash Player and Adobe Reader patches.

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