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When nothing on-screen moves except the mouse pointer, the computer is frozen up solid. Try the following approaches, in the following order, to correct the problem:
A Approach 1: Press Esc twice.
This action usually doesnâ€™t work, but give it a shot anyway.
A Approach 2: Press Ctrl, Alt, and Delete all at the same time.
If youâ€™re lucky, Windows Task Manager appears with the message that you discovered an â€śunresponsive application.â€ť The Task Manager lists the names of currently running programs â€” including the one thatâ€™s not responding. Click the name of the program thatâ€™s causing the mess and then click the End Process button. You lose any unsaved work in it, of course, but you should be used to that. (If you somehow stumbled onto the Ctrl+Alt+Delete combination by accident, press Esc at the unresponsive-application message to return to Windows.)
Chapter 15: The Case of the Broken Window
If that still doesnâ€™t do the trick, try clicking the Task Managerâ€™s Shut Down menu and choosing Restart. Your computer should shut down and restart, hopefully returning in a better mood.
A Approach 3: If the preceding approaches donâ€™t work, push the computerâ€™s reset button.
When the Turn Off Computer box appears, choose Restart.
A Approach 4: If not even the reset button works, turn the computer off and choose Restart from the Turn Off Computer box.
The Printer Isn't Working Right
If the printerâ€™s not working right, start with the simplest solution first: Make sure that itâ€™s plugged into the wall and turned on. Surprisingly, this step fixes about half the problems with printers. Next, make sure that the printer cable is snugly nestled in the ports on both the printer and the computer. Then check to make sure that it has enough paper â€” and that the paper isnâ€™t jammed in the mechanism.
Then try printing from different programs, such as WordPad and Notepad, to see whether the problemâ€™s with the printer, Windows XP, or a particular Windows program. Try printing the document by using different fonts. All these chores help pinpoint the culprit.
Can your printer be out of ink or toner? Sometimes these calamities can stop a printer from working.
For a quick test of a printer, click the Start button, choose Control Panel, and select Printers and Other Hardware. Click Printers and Faxes to see the printers connected to your computer. Right-click on your printerâ€™s icon, choose Properties, and click the Print Test Page button. If your printer sends you a nicely printed page, the problem is probably with the software, not the printer.
While still at the Printers and Faxes window, press the F1 key to bring up the Printing Help window. Try the printerâ€™s troubleshooting program â€” Fixing a Printing Problem â€” to figure out why the printerâ€™s goofing off.
Chapter 15: The Case of the Broken Window
My Double-Clicks Are Now Single Clicks!
In an effort to make things easier, Windows XP lets people choose whether a single click or a double click should open a file or folder.
But if youâ€™re not satisfied with the click method Windows XP uses, hereâ€™s how to change it:
1. Open any folder â€” the Start menuâ€™s My Documents folder will do.
2. Choose Folder Options from the Tools menu.
3. Choose your click preference in the Click Items as Follows section.
4. Click OK to save your preferences.
Donâ€™t like to follow steps? Just click the Restore Defaults button in Folder Options, and Windows brings back double-clicking.
Figuring Out Those Annoying Pop-Up Messages
In This Chapter
B Access is denied B Click here to activate now B Error connecting to . . .
B Found new hardware
B If you remove this file, you will no longer be able to run this program B Missing shortcut B New updates are ready to install B Open With . . .
B Privacy alert â€” saving cookies B Stay current with automatic updates B When you send information to the Internet B You have files waiting to be written to the CD
Đ–ost people donâ€™t have any trouble understanding error messages. A carâ€™s pleasant beeping tone means that youâ€™ve left your keys in the ignition. An electronic stuttering sound from the stereo means that your compact disc has problems.
Things are different with Windows XP, however. The pop-up messages in Windows XP could have been written by a Senate subcommittee, if only they werenâ€™t so brief. Are they error messages? Something to rejoice? When Windows XP tosses a message your way, itâ€™s usually just a single sentence. Windows XP rarely describes what you did to cause the event and, even worse, hardly ever tells you what to do about it.
Here are some of the phrases that youâ€™ll find in the most common messages that Windows XP throws in your face. Look at the title of your
Chapter 16: Figuring Out Those Annoying Pop-Up Messages
confusing error message â€” Access Is Denied, for instance â€” then find that title listed alphabetically in this chapter.
In this chapter, I explain what Windows XP is trying to say, why itâ€™s saying it, and just what the heck it expects you to do.