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  1. #1
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    LANGALIST PLUS

    Tools for managing Win7 and Vista system bootup


    By Fred Langa

    When changing Windows 7 and Vista boot controls, don't look for the 'boot.ini' file, familiar to Win XP users.

    In Vista and Win7, Microsoft eliminated boot.ini and replaced it with the more-powerful Boot Configuration Data (BCD) store, tripping up a reader trying to track down a dual-boot problem.

    The full text of this column is posted at WindowsSecrets.com/2010/04/01/06 (paid content, opens in a new window/tab).

    Columnists typically cannot reply to comments here, but do incorporate the best tips into future columns.


    Last edited by revia; 2011-01-20 at 15:56.

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    A mouse problem: cursor moves by itself

    Do you have a Infra-red mouse? Turn it over - if there a red light then you have an IR mouse.
    Does your mouse pad have multiple colours, eg a picture or patten? Especially one with red on it, although I can't always see the red in a pattern or picture.

    This could easily be the problem.

    Thanks
    Rick

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    Almost 100% of 'random cursor movement problems that result in text being entered in the wrong place' are down to the Synaptics Touchpad. If the Touchpad is set up so that it is oversensitive to touch, it can result in the cursor moving when your wrist or shirt sleeve goes anyway near the surface. frequently, the 'tap to click' action is triggered by the oversensitivity.

    The answer is to change the settings of the Touchpad by reducing the surface sensitivity or disabling the 'tap to click' option. Synaptics settings are often obscurely hidden away in the Mouse applet in the Control Panel.

    Or if you use a separate mouse, disable the Touchpad: there is usually a shortcut on the Laptops keyboard for turning off the Touchpad - FN + F7 or one of the other F keys.

    Terry


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    New Lounger
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    I had a similar problem with my HP Tablet PC. I tried everything suggested in Fred's article, but nothing helped. From reading online forums, I learned that there was some sort of hardware problem causing the issue (probably heat-related). Changing the power plan from 'High Performance' to 'Balanced' (and then modifying the advanced settings to tweak the performance back up a bit) worked like a charm. No more mouse with a mind of its own!

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    I found BCDedit.exe difficult to use, probably because I couldn't find much info on it. However I did find another, free and more friendly, tool to do the same job. It is EasyBCD and it gives you a GUI interface which makes the process a lot easier. I dual booted XP with Win7 and the Win7 supplied dual boot menu had basic descriptions and worked OK. EasyBCD easily allowed me to change the boot menu descriptions, adjust the waiting time and default boot.
    Bob
    Win 8.1 Pro - IE11, Office Pro 2013, Acronis TIH 2014
    Win 10 Pro preview 10162

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    This site is pretty confusing. I got here from the WS newsletter, but the topics on this page do not include the topic I need to respond to.

    In any event, when people discover that they have "too many" programs running at startup, when should consider a program like WinPatrol from BillP Studios. This free program allows you to modify the start times of your startup programs, so that you can start one a minute for the next hour. The result is that the computer becomes responsive much more quickly after booting, and remains responsive. And if you have programs that are getting in each other's way during startup, you can start them in whatever sequence you need to.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jon bondy View Post
    This site is pretty confusing. I got here from the WS newsletter, but the topics on this page do not include the topic I need to respond to.

    In any event, when people discover that they have "too many" programs running at startup, when should consider a program like WinPatrol from BillP Studios. This free program allows you to modify the start times of your startup programs, so that you can start one a minute for the next hour. The result is that the computer becomes responsive much more quickly after booting, and remains responsive. And if you have programs that are getting in each other's way during startup, you can start them in whatever sequence you need to.
    Good answer. BTW, I agree that when WS Articles cover several topics, maybe there should be new threads for discussion of each topic or sub-topic. That would make it easier to track individual issues.
    -- Bob Primak --

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    Fred,
    By far the easiest tool for managing Vista & Windows 7 boot configuration is EasyBCD 1.7.2 from Neosmart Technologies.
    Its a free download from this location: http://neosmart.net/downloads/softwa...CD%201.7.2.exe and takes
    the misery out of editing the boot configuration.

    Rick Corey
    Black Bear Digital

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    This is in reference to the mouse problem. There is one possibility that hasn't been touched on, assuming the mouse in question is wireless. That is that someone else's wireless mouse may be sending signals to your mouse. I had this happen with a Microsoft wireless keyboard/mouse combo I bought several years ago. I liked it so much I bought a second one for my other computer, in the same house but on different floors. My office was upstairs and I had a second computer downstairs in the living room. Sometimes I would leave the one in the office on while it printed large files (I publish books on military history and used to print them out on a HP LJ8100 laser printer) and then use the computer downstairs. When I went back upstairs, there would be dozens of open windows and files that weren't open when I left it earlier. You're thinking virus, right? Wrong. I spent weeks trying all kinds of free virus checkers and such--nada. (I had a firewall and anti-virus always running.) Then if I went upstairs to check on the printing and start another print job, I'd find a few open windows on the downstairs computer that weren't there when I left it. I had one of those "Aha!" moments and replaced the downstairs keyboard and mouse with wired versions--problem solved. All the keying and mousing on one computer was being sent to the other computer. The distance between the two computers, as the crew flies so to speak, was probably all of 10 feet, although the signal did have to go through the floor/ceiling of the two rooms (the office was directly over the living room).

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    Yet another slightly off-the-wall cause of random cursor movements or, more often, random characters appearing while typing, is that the built-in voice recognition applet has somehow got switched on (usually by an inadvertent hotkey combination because you have to look at the keys while typing like all us non-touch-typists do and missed the pop-up asking if you want to use it!)

    Doesn't happen often but I came across it once during a stint as a helpdesk person and it caused quite a bit of head-scratching to figure out!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ray Merriam View Post
    This is in reference to the mouse problem. There is one possibility that hasn't been touched on, assuming the mouse in question is wireless. That is that someone else's wireless mouse may be sending signals to your mouse. I had this happen with a Microsoft wireless keyboard/mouse combo I bought several years ago. I liked it so much I bought a second one for my other computer, in the same house but on different floors.
    Buy Logitech for that sort of gear. I have two identical Logitech mice that are used within 2 metres (6 to 7 feet) of each other and no problems.
    Bob
    Win 8.1 Pro - IE11, Office Pro 2013, Acronis TIH 2014
    Win 10 Pro preview 10162

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    Setting up and editing dual-boot options in Windows 7 is much more straightforward with EasyBCD. It is much more intuitive and gives an accessible and user-friendly interface instead of the command-line Windows utility BCDedit.

    Pete Miller

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    RE: A mouse problem: cursor moves by itself

    Another possibility (for non-portable PCs): a faulty or failing keyboard. Since the mouse has to be left-clicked in a new position to actually move the typing cursor to a new spot, a dirty mouse alone doesn't explain the phenomenon. But a faulty/failing keyboard can move the typing cursor without manual input. Arrow keys, space bar, tab key, maybe any of these are outputting a spurious signal. Swap out the keyboard and see if the problem goes away.

    Of course, if this is a portable, then the touchpad is a more likely candidate.

  14. #14
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    We had a unique (and rather ironic) situation where specific mouse pad (with an image of Van Gogh's "Starry Night") had color patterns that made optical mice wander aimlessly when stationary in some spots. It was confined to that particular design and once the pad was swapped out, problem solved!

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