Quick tips

Three simple fixes for three kind of obscure problems.


Just a minute…

Here’s a weird problem: After about a minute of inactivity, a computer would jump out of Windows 7 and back to the logon screen. And by inactivity I mean the customer could be sitting there watching a YouTube video, and suddenly be dumped out to the logon screen.

I changed the Power Plan settings (http://windows.microsoft.com/en-ie/windows7/change-create-or-delete-a-power-plan-scheme) to increase the time before the screen would blank and before the hard drive would shut down. Then, I turned off hibernation. I sat there for a minute and … the computer was back at the Logon screen.

Eventually I realized that the computer was acting like it had a screen saver set. So I checked there. Nope, no screen saver. But one little option was causing the problem. The screen saver was set to None, but the time was set to 1 minute AND the box saying "requires a password" was checked. So after a minute, we were going out to the Logon screen. I hate it when computers do just what we tell them and not what we mean.

If you’re having this really weird problem in Windows 7 or Windows 8.x:

  • Right-click on an empty spot on your desktop
  • Click on Personalize
  • Click on Screen saver
  • Clear the checkmark in the box that says “On resume, display logon screen”
  • OK your way out

And by the way, if you want to change your power plan settings, there’s a link to that right in the Screen saver properties. If I had used that shortcut in the first place, I’d have seen the problem right away.

Tell Apple you’re not using your old computer any more. Seriously.

The last couple of columns (http://rlis.com/columns/column467.htm and http://rlis.com/columns/column468.htm) dealt with the current iTunes scam. There’s something else you need to know about iTunes. If you use iTunes one thing you really need to do before you get rid of an old computer is “deauthorize” it.

iTunes allows a maximum of five computers associated with your Apple ID. (And by the way, why isn’t it an "Apple iD”?) If you give that computer to someone else without deauthorizing it, that person has access to all your iTunes content ---- music, apps, and of course the associated credit card. Whoa.

If the computer is still able to connect to the Apple store:

  • Open iTunes
  • Click on Apple Store
  • Click on Deauthorize this computer
  • Type your Apple ID and password
  • Click on Deauthorize

If you can’t get your old computer to connect to the Apple store, or if you’ve already given it away, you need to go to a different computer, go to the Apple store and deauthorize ALL your computers. You can then authorize just the ones you want. (You can only do that once a year, for some reason, so be careful.)

More information on the Apple support site, here: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1420.

Get your Google back

If you have a Windows 8 computer, you have likely noticed how Microsoft’s Internet Explorer and the Microsoft search engine, Bing have pretty much taken over your browsing and searching. The folks at Google want you to get your Google back, and they’ve made it pretty easy to do that.

The Google Search app for Windows 8 is pretty cool. Visit the new Google for Windows 8 page, http://getyourgoogleback.com for a quick way to get either the Google search app or the Google Chrome browser or both. You just need to click on a few things and you’re good to go. If you want a little more help, check out this fun video: http://youtu.be/TGplftLI9Fo.

Do you have a tip to share? Do you need a quick tip to fix something annoying? Email [email protected] and let’s talk.


Do you need help with your computer? I'm here to help you and your home or business computer get along!

Cate Eales runs Computer Care Kelowna (http://computercarekelowna.com/) a mobile service helping home users and businesses get along with their computers. To arrange an appointment phone her at 250-764-7043. Cate also welcomes your comments and suggestions. Send email to [email protected].

You can read previous columns here: http://rlis.com/column.htm . If you'd like to subscribe to this column by email, please visit this link: http://www.feedblitz.com/f/f.fbz?Sub=20618 . It's easy, and free. If you'd prefer the RSS Feed, click here: http://rlis.com/rlis.xml.

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About the Author

The Technology Shaman, Cate Eales, has been helping people make online computing safe, accessible, and fun for over 30 years.

Cate lives in Kelowna with her husband, Eric. She owns and operates Computer Care Kelowna, a mobile computer business providing on-site service for home and small business customers.

Cate is here to help you and your home or business computer get along.

E-mail Cate at [email protected] with comments, suggestions, or questions.

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The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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