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2 Tools Used in Advanced Windows Repairs

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Dealing with complicated or advanced computer problems might seem intimidating. However, with the correct Google search and a basic understanding of these problems can be easier than you think. Maybe that’s exactly how you found this article. Let’s go over some of the basics of advanced computer repairs.

1. Command Prompt

Command prompt is window in which you can input text-based commands into your computer. Often times these commands have more direct access to the system or can do tasks not able to be done with the Graphical User Interface (GUI) that you’re used to. However since command prompt is that powerful it is important to use it cautiously and responsibly.

How to Open Command Prompt

To open a command prompt, the easiest thing to do is to hold in the windows key and tap the letter “R” to open the run box, type in cmd, and click ok. However many commands that we have to run will require it running as administrator. I will detail the steps on how to do this in each windows operating system.

Windows Vista, Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 and later Servers

  • Click the Start Menu
  • In the search box type in command
  • Right-click ‘Command Prompt’ in the search results list
  • Click ‘Run as administrator’ from the popup menu
  • If you are not an administrator of the computer a dialog box will be shown prompting for the administrator password

To run an elevated command prompt in Windows 8:

  • Press keyboard ‘Windows key’
  • Type word ‘command’
  • Then right-click on ‘Command Prompt’
  • From menu click ‘Run as administrator’ (menu is at bottom of screen in Windows 8)
  • If you are not an administrator of the computer a dialog box will be shown prompting for the administrator password

Windows 10

Windows key + “X”: this opens up the power user menu at which point just click “Command Prompt (Admin)”

As you can see, you can also use this menu to easily get to many other Windows Features. (This only works in Windows 10)

Windows 10 Alternative:

Cortana is a feature of Windows 10. It is located in the bottom right-hand corner usually next to the start button. If you type “command” into Cortana, it will bring up “command prompt” at which point you just right-click it and select “run as administrator.”

Command Prompt Usages

Once Command Prompt is running as an Administrator here are some useful and common commands you might find yourself using:

  • Enable Windows Installer in Safe mode: REG ADD “HKLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\SafeBoot\Network\MSIServer” /VE /T REG_SZ /F /D “Service”
  • Bring up local IP: ipconfig
  • Enable built in administrator: net user administrator /active:yes
  • Disable built in administrator: net user administrator /active:no
  • Flush DNS (for Internet Issues): Each line of this must be entered individually. Also, most times the customer must be talked through this as normally the only time you would need to do this is the customer does not have internet access.
  1. Type ipconfig /release in the command prompt.
  2. Wait a few seconds for a reply that the IP address has been released.
  3. Type ipconfig /renew in the command prompt.
  4. Wait a few seconds for a reply that the IP address has been re-established.
  5. Type ipconfig /flushdns in the command prompt.
  6. Type netsh winsock reset in the command prompt.
  7. Close the command prompt and attempt connection.
  • SFC Scan (This is a file check for windows operating systems to check for corruption ): sfc /scannow
  • DISM Commands (to repair OS corruptions on later versions of windows (7/8/10) :
    1. dism /online /cleanup-image /checkhealth
    The /checkhealth command will see if it’s repairable if it says no corruptions there is no need to continue further.
    If not then the next option is:
    2. dism /online /cleanup-image /scanhealth
    This command will see what is repairable.
    3. dism /online /cleanup-image /restorehealth
    This command will repair it.

2. Windows Boot Options

Sometimes when dealing with advanced windows repairs it’s useful or important to put Windows into a slightly modified state before beginning a repair. Here are some of the boot options:

  • Safe Mode: Starts Windows with minimal drivers and services. You can often pinpoint problems by narrowing the potential sources, and Safe Mode helps identify new applications, drivers, and settings as culprits while giving you a clean slate to work from.
  • Safe Mode with Networking: Starts Windows in Safe Mode with network drivers and additional services to access the local network or Internet. Use this feature to provide network connectivity when you need to install software or research problems.
  • Safe Mode with Command Prompt: Starts Windows in Safe Mode and finishes at the command prompt instead of the desktop. Use this option if you know how to navigate the command line and are already familiar with command-line applications.
  • Enable Boot Logging: Creates a file named nbtlog.txt that lists all drivers invoked during startup. You can use nbtlog.txt as an electronic paper trail for troubleshooting. Service technicians typically use this trail to identify and isolate sources of startup failure that aren’t readily apparent.
  • Enable Low-Resolution Video: Starts Windows with minimal resolution settings and refresh rates. Use this option to reset corrupt display settings, diagnose a faulty graphics card, or use a television instead of a computer monitor.
  • Last Known Good Configuration (advanced): Returns the system to recent driver and registry configurations. New drivers and software can sometimes cause problems that are easily fixed by returning to a previously functional state.
  • Directory Services Restore Mode: Starts Windows domain controller with Active Directory to restore directory services. (Intended for service professionals and IT administrators.)
  • Debugging Mode: Boots into an advanced troubleshooting mode with debugging functionality. (Intended for service professionals and IT administrators.)
  • Disable Automatic Restart on System Failure: Prevents Windows from automatically restarting upon failure, which can sometimes cause an interminable loop (until you break the cycle manually).
  • Disable Driver Signature Enforcement: Loads installed software that has invalid or missing signatures.

With a basic understanding of the abilities of Command Prompt and the available Windows Modes, your specific issue is just a Google search away from being fixed. Escalated Windows Repairs can be daunting but hopefully, now it seems more manageable.

If you have any further questions or feel uncomfortable handling these problems yourself, feel feel to give Rush Tech Support a call at 844-881-7874.

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