Please, I need help, not sure if this is the right place to post

Discussion in 'privacy problems' started by lost&confused, Jan 9, 2006.

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  1. lost&confused

    lost&confused Registered Member

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    Hi ya'll,
    My son created a partition on my computer in order to bypass security and ratings settings. He is an adult, but uses my computer, and I refused to let him have porn on it. The partition was his way to circumvent my wishes.
    I am not at all computer literate, I only know what I do from searching the net. I am pretty good at finding info on what's going on. I knew something was up when the logs showed my son was only online for 6 seconds. I had the computer "fixed" by a local computer "expert". She either didn't find the partition (which I find hard to believe) or felt that as an adult, my son's rights were more important than mine as the computer owner.

    I was trying to put a program on the computer that blocked my son's access to the control panel and screwed up big-time. I ended up unable to get in the computer at all, until for some reason, it booted me into the partition from safe mode.

    My son, being the manipulative pain that he is, refused to tell me what was happening, and where I was, even when I was crying because I lost all my files. In my attempt to get back to my files, I REALLY screwed up and ended up having to reinstall windows.

    Now I just want my stuff back, if it still exists. And I want to get rid of the stuff that left over from him without losing anymore of my stuff. I still have objects in the registry that belong to an administrator that has a whole string of letters and numbers for the name, and I still have files that say I am not allowed access because I am not the administrator. My son hasn't touched the computer since I had to reinstall windows, so I know everything on here is left from before the reinstall. I have found alot of files with stuff in them by the number of memory used in them, but they are empty, not even hidden items. I did finally find a couple documents that ended in glfs, which the web says means that my son had some sort of ghost program on here.

    I am disabled, and money is tight. I had to pay almost $100 for the lady that didn't find/tell me about the partition. I cant afford another $100 for someone to merge his stuff with my stuff, so I can get as much of my stuff as possible back, and so the partition is gone.

    I am posting here, because along with everything else, he put on some type of spy program so he could watch what I was doing. The computer lady said she got rid of it, but I feel like my privacy was totally violated on my own computer. I am just looking for any advice on how to find out if there is still anything left of his partition besides the names, and the strange administrators, which there are more of than I would think there should be. I just want my computer to be just mine again, with no strange programs on it that my son used to hide his actions. Obviously, since he wouldn't even be man enough to admit his actions, and help me get out of his partition and back to my own partition, he isn't going to help me do anything to find his ghosted files, and to tell me everything he did on it.

    Is there anyone that can help me? I have downloaded over a dozen registry check programs to try and figure out what is happening on my own computer, and don't understand any of them well enough to make them really useful to me. I will post any information that you need if it will make it where you can help me.
    Thank you all, even if you cant help, for just trying,
    a very lost and confused mom:'(
     
  2. Happy Bytes

    Happy Bytes Guest

    First question from me - what gives your son the right to use your computer without getting permission from you? Did you tell him he can use it but shouldn't change anything? The next fact - do i get it right that he installed a backdoor/keylogger on your system? If yes i would send this guy out in the fresh air in the case that he lives in the same appartment.

    Basically you can access your data and maybe we can recover most of it (that is not so difficult - if all fails i can offer a VNC connection to help you) but the most important point is: How should this continue? Next time he might do the same. The only safe way is: Get a removable hard disk rack. (Should be around $19 for a cheap one) and place the hard disk there (thats easily to connect) and remove all the same this hard disk and lock it somewhere in the kitchen sink.
     
  3. lost&confused

    lost&confused Registered Member

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    Believe me, when I found out, I was beyond angry. I am disabled because I am agoraphobic, so too many people, including my son it seems, equate a mental illness with a lack of mental functioning and being dumb. Which I am far from being. But because I so rarely leave my house, my computer is my connection to the world, and he knows that. It hurts me horribly that he did this to me. He had been living here to take me when I had to go to an appointment. When I discovered all of this, I took the computer away (its a laptop, I just unplug it and take it in my bedroom) and gave him a month to get moved out.
    He had permission to use my computer on a windows restricted policy basis. He was a limited user and had content settings to where he could go online only to certain places. I guess he didn't like it, and found a backdoor through my boundaries. Yes, he had some sort of program on that he could watch to make sure I wasn't figuring out what he was doing. It is either gone now, or one of his ghost files, but I found a couple logs of what I was doing, how long I was online, which websites, that sort of thing, so he has to have had some sort of monitor in place.
    I was able to recover my outlook express emails, which had my grandbaby's pictures and video in it, so that is the most important thing of all. My son (the other one) is stationed at Pearl Harbor so I am only able to see my grandson through emails.
    But I hate the feeling that the son that lives here may have god knows what on here, and I have no way of knowing about it. I just know that he does have stuff left behind after I reinstalled windows, because there is stuff on here that I don't know what is. Alot about hubs and IDE's, programs that have two names, the printer has 2 names, a shortcut in his documents to command prompt, and an administrator named asp.net, and a lot of other stuff. I don't know much about computers, but I figured out enough to know that I was pushed into his partition somehow when I shut myself out of my own area.
    The lady that I took the computer to originally was no help, she just told me that the windows reinstall would take care of everything, and I just needed to calm down and not worry about it. I don't want to just ignore it, because I don't know what "it" is. I don't want there to be any chance that the program he had emailing him my activities is still on here.
    Unless there is some way that he can get access to my actual computer, and not just information, from someplace else, he cant do anything else to my stuff. But I have lots of stuff that's called remote on here, and that bothers me, but I don't know if I can safely just delete it. That's where ya'll come in, I need to know what I can get rid of, and how to find out what he has on here that he has as ghosts. I figure that if the partition stuff wasn't telling enough, the fact that he had a program to make his stuff ghosts shows he knew he was doing stuff on here that I didn't want him to do.
    Sorry about sending such long messages, but I don't know what I know that is or isn't important, so I just talk alot in case something triggers knowledge with ya'll. I am also still steaming, so you get the fall out, I am afraid. Thankfully, my son is out of town with his job for 2 weeks so I have time to get things dealt with, unfortunately, that means he hasn't been able to go apartment hunting. I wish I had the money to take my computer to an expert that could just show me what my son had done, and get rid of everything possible. But I dont, so I am hoping ya'll can at least help me find out if I am safe now.
    I will keep an eye out for any replies, and thanks in advance, for any help at all, because I am at the end of my rope, and have no clue what to do now.
    Still lost, and still confused :'(
     
  4. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    Hi,
    First thing from the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy: Don't Panic.
    Second:
    Do you wish to salvage your personal data?
    If so, are your files and folders still present after the reinstallation of Windows?
    If they are, you should burn them to cd / dvd - assuming you have a cd / dvd burner. If not, you might want to try to fit them onto a flash usb key. Do you have one? What is the size of your personal data (if it still exists). Flash devices come in sizes of about 128-512Mb, sometimes 1Gb. For most people, this is enough. They also cost somewhat though.
    BUT ...
    To be able to fully heal your computer, you will have to be able to save your data externally, on some storage device. CDs or DVDs are great - cheap and with immense capacities.
    If you DO NOT have your old data, BUT you still wish to try to heal your computer:
    You will have to FORMAT.
    For this, you will need your Windows CD. And some other software, but which can be easily downloaded for free.
    Do you want to format?
    If so, I'll try to help you.
    Mrk
     
  5. Milken

    Milken Registered Member

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    If I knew you personally I'd whoopt your son's A$$, when porn becomes so serious, it's time to get a real woman.

    Just to add 2cents I'd consider creating a guest account. I THINK you can accomplish waht you want. Also a BIOS passward, make both STRONG(illogical is good, or a word mixed with upper/lower case, characters, symbols)
     
  6. lost&confused

    lost&confused Registered Member

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    Thanks ya'll, especially the gentleman that offered to whoop my son's a$$, I wish I had the nerve to just kick it out, let alone whoop it.

    Mrkvonic, yes, I have most of my personal stuff left. My old emails with my grandson's stuff is saved. I use the computer to do art stuff, it gives me something therapeutic (good shrink word, huh?) to do with my free time. I have a bunch of pictures, both scanned and downloaded on here. I have a CD burner capability in my computer, but I am clueless how to use it. My son knows, but I'll be damned (excuse the language) if I am allowing him to so much as touch my computer again. But the pictures and old email are the only things that I can think of that I still have that I really want, besides my favorites files. I can send my favorites to my email, and then check it and save it in the webmail. I really, really would like my old address book, but it went byebye with the reinstall. Other than that, I dont think I have anything I really need to save. So I am willing to do whatever it takes. But I have to admit, I have this twisted need to see what my son has on here, which would be REALLY hard to find, since most of whats left is ghosts. Oh, and I have a CD with some pictures on it that I do NOT want to keep. Is it possible to put what I want to save on it?

    Milken, I have no clue what a BIOS password is, but I would be more than willing to put one on. I have always had my administrator account password protected, but I guess it didnt do me any good. And I can make a guest account easy, that is finally something that I DO know how to do. I dont know why I need one, LOL, but I can make one. I agree that my pain in the hiney needs to get his head out of his a$$ and realize that porn is NOT the best thing on earth, but he is just too absorbed to get it.

    I will await further instructions, oh guru's of this stuff.
    slightly less confused, but I think I am still lost,
    just`i
     
  7. sosaiso

    sosaiso Registered Member

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    As for the cd burning, I'm pretty sure all you have to do is drag your files into the cd drive that is your burner, insert a blank CD-R or a CD-RW [purchasable at any computer store.] And then go to File, write these files to disk, and follow on screen directions.

    As for BIOS password, I set up mine through the first screen when my computer boot up by pressing f10 really fast, and then finding the BIOS password option. Though, with this password, if you lose it/forget it, you won't even be able to boot up windows. :T
     
  8. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    Hi,
    Let's start with burning:
    1. Arrange your files and folders in one big folder. Check the size (right click properties). If the size exceeds 700Mb you'll need more than 1 CD.
    2. Download CD burning utility:

    http://www.cdburnerxp.se/

    3. Install it.
    4. Use it.
    You want to burn data disks (that's the first option of the three when starting the program). Then in the right pane, scroll to your folder and then click Add to add it to disk.
    You will see how much data is added in the bottom scrollbar. Do not exceed 700Mb. After you're satisfied, name the disk - instead of New Compilation give a reasonable name.
    Then click burn.
    Tick checkboxes: Verify, Finalize.
    Reduce the burn speed to an intermediate value.
    Click start (or burn, I don't remember now) and wait.
    After finished, repeat and make another copy or two.
    You can do this unlimited number of times, provided you have enough CDs. Label the disks using waterproof pen - do not scratch them.
    After you have all your data safely saved away, we can advance on.
    Post back how it goes.
    You also have screenshots and help available on the site.

    In the meanwhile, you can also download the following:


    Firewall - ZoneAlarm
    http://www.zonelabs.com/store/content/company/products/znalm/freeDownload.jsp


    Anti-virus - AVG

    http://free.grisoft.com/doc/1


    Anti-spyware & anti-trojan

    Microsoft Anti-Spyware

    http://www.microsoft.com/athome/security/spyware/software/default.mspx

    Spybot Search and Destroy

    http://www.safer-networking.org/en/download/

    Ad-Aware SE

    http://www.download.com/3000-2144-10045910.html

    Ewido

    http://www.ewido.net/en/

    Spyware blaster

    http://www.javacoolsoftware.com/spywareblaster.html


    Java

    http://www.java.com/en/download/manual.jsp


    Firefox broswer

    http://www.mozilla.com/firefox/


    Thuderbird mail

    http://www.mozilla.com/thunderbird/

    Do you have Windows XP SP2? Do you have the Windows installation disk?

    The downloaded programs - you will also need to burn to a separate disk.

    BTW, I have written a very large guide how to properly set your computer, from A-Z - in this forum, too - you could use it if you like, but some things might be too complex for you.

    In the meanwhile, try what I wrote:

    Burn data.
    Download programs.
    Burn programs.

    See ya around,
    Mrk
     
  9. Milken

    Milken Registered Member

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    Sosiao is right, when the computer comes up just, you'll see an option for BIOS or system settings(probaly F10). You DEFINITELY want to know this password, I'd make it the same as the ADMIN, because the BIOS password will rarely if ever be used, if you get rid or your PC, remember to unchange it.
    If your son would do what he did, you definitely need him on a poddy training GUEST account. No control panel No changing Internet Explorer(almost any other browser is better, I like Opera, but I'm not sure if you can restrict them within a guest account) options, no my computer, etc.
     
  10. lost&confused

    lost&confused Registered Member

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    Thanks again ya'll.

    Sosaiso: Thanks for the CD burning info. I tried on my own, and got no where, so I will try it again :)

    Mrk: Thanks for all the info, and here goes with questions/replies; 1. How do I know which files I need? I have my documents ready to go. I want to save all my old emails, so how do I find the folder that they are in? Or do I just put the whole outlook express file into the folder of things to keep? My documents and emails are the only things that I REALLY want.
    I have the discs for reinstalling windows; all the discs for reinstalling Dell's applications and drivers, etc; and my disc for my photoshop program. I have a bunch of security stuff downloaded, but its all freeware, so I can find it again.
    I have of the programs you listed: MSN antispy, Spybot, and Ad-aware SE. I also have AboutBuster, Abexo Registry Cleaner, JDiskReport, TweakNowRegCleaner, CCleaner, Trojan Remover, Avast! virus, Mailwasher and BeClean. Obviously, my son has me freaked as far as what is on here. The thing is, I can see alot of stuff that I know isnt mine, like all the remote stuff, but I didnt want to just start deleting and mess anything up.
    I am going to get a couple CD's and burn today or tomorrow. My computer has a CD burner as part of its equipment, should I use a different one for safety?
    I have Windows XP, with all the current updates. I can look at the A to Z posting, but you are right, alot of it will most likely look like greek to me. Silly question, but then again, alot of mine are obvious to ya'll and I dont get it at all. Why do I need to burn the downloaded programs onto disc, since I can just download them again? I am asking cuz I am trying to learn. I like learning new stuff, and especially about my computer, but I dont always get it the first time around.
    But for now, I am going to get the stuff ready so that when I get the discs, I can burn the info onto them.

    Milken: I will try and find the BIOS password. I know that I havent installed the diagnostics part of my Dell devices/applications. Does that have any thing to do with the BIOS password? And thanks for telling me why I should have a guest account, but I am going to be the *itchy mom and just continue to keep the computer away from him, I think. He used the word program for most of his email, and he can check those at work or the library. Anything else he did, he doesnt need to do on my computer anyway. One of the things that bothers me is that the ghost program put his ghost emails and other stuff into some pictures, and I dont know how to make sure that they arent in any of mine. I downloaded a program called FileSee, and I can see Hex info on the pictures that I have been suspicious of, because I know I didnt create or download them, but I (a) cant read hex, and (b) have hundred of graphics, so going through them all to find the ones with hidden info would be a true pain in the a$$.

    I think thats it for responses to this point. My son is out of town until the 17th, so that gives me awhile to get this all figured out. Thanks again guys, you have been really terrific with me.
    just`i
     
  11. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    Hi,
    Several things:
    You need to burn programs because we want to install them BEFORE you go to internet.
    All that stuff you say you have - let's assume it's all dirty and we will not use them. If you want a clean start - please just go with what I said.
    How do you find files you need?
    I assume you can click My Documents / My Computer and find your files. Also create new folder? You know how to do that? Copy files from one folder to another?
    Outlook Express file - I'm not familiar with the folder containing the mails and preferences - SOMEONE ELSE PLEASE STEP IN HERE. I suggest you switch to Thunderbird, which is far far more advanced and secure. But that after the format.
    Your CD burner is hardware, so it's safe.
    The program I recommend is also safe, so no trouble there.
    ONE MORE thing - Do not install things you think might be helpful. That's why you have the Wilder's geeks to help. What I mentioned are the most trusted and popular applications. There are many small good ones, but we'll stick with the mainstream goodies. So do not use others apps that might come from unknown sources.
    Let's keep it simple.
    So, can you organize all your folders sub-folders and files into one big folder? I hope someone will step in for the OE preferences and mails. If not, I'll google those later on.
    Next, can you download the CD Burner XP Pro and try it?
    You can also burn a disk for fun, just to test it, to see how it's going.
    Burn more than a single backup - 2 or even 3. So more than a couple of disks.
    You can buy cheap packages of 25 or 50 for not much money.
    Can you also download all the other programs I said and organize them in a folder called - Good Stuff or something like that?
    Step by step.
    Remember - computers are dumb things. They do what you tell them. Do not fear the machines. My mother also used to fear the computers. Until I crash-coursed her through it. It's only a machine. Nothing more. It's your slave. You'll see things are quite simple once you get going.
    So, try to complete the steps I suggested.
    And one last thing - use precise WORDS when you refer to things. MSN antispy is NOT what I recommended. I recommended Microsoft Anti-Spyware. HUGE difference.
    CD Burner XP PRO is a SOFTWARE for burning media.
    CD Burner on your machine is a HARDWARE device that works with burning softwares, including CD Burner XP Pro.
    This step is vital for good communication between us. Precise terming is important for successful revival of the computer.
    Mrk

    Mrk
     
  12. lost&confused

    lost&confused Registered Member

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    Mrkvonic,
    Sorry, I will be careful at what I say and how I say it. I will get a multipack of CD's and burn more than one copy of my documents. I will download the programs you listed, and burn them onto the CD's once I have them. I have all of my documents in a file and ready to burn, I was unsure if I needed any other information burned onto the CD besides the files that I want to salvage. Once I have the information on how to save my outlook files, I will have everything that I want to keep ready to be burned. As I am unable to leave the house, I have to wait for someone to bring me the CD's. I am trying to get them today, and as soon as I do, I will do as you say.
    The programs that I referred to are programs that I downloaded before I found this resource, so they have not been used since I posted here. The exceptions are the Avast! anti-virus which is an on-access program and monitors at all times and Microsoft AntiSpyware, which is also monitoring at all times.
    Thank you for your help and time, it is appreciated
    just`i
     
  13. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    Hi,
    Please RE-download the fresh copies from the links I posted.
    Mrk
     
  14. lost&confused

    lost&confused Registered Member

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    Mrk,
    I am downloading, it is just taking me awhile. I have the CD burner downloaded and installed, and ready to use. I have downloaded some of the programs on the list, but have just saved them to the folder that I am supposed to burn, I havent installed them. I think that is what I am supposed to do. I am trying really hard to do things right, so I hope I am.
    I am going to go back to downloading programs now, I just checked in to see if I had anymore instructions.
    Thank you again
    just`i
     
  15. lost&confused

    lost&confused Registered Member

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    Mrk,
    I have all 10 programs on the list downloaded and burned onto a CD. I also have my personal files on the CD. I was able to find instructions on how to save my Outlook Explorer files, and so thats done. I have 2 copies of the CD's burned. I burned them with the program you had me use, and it said that the burn was completed, so I think I did that ok. I am going to try and download the programs from the sites themselves so I will know I havent messed things up again. But that will have to be in the morning.
    I hope I havent missed anything, and I cant think of any way to say how much this means to me, thank you just doesnt cover it.
    Thanks to all of you that have been here to support and assist me, it means more than I can ever say.
    just`i
     
  16. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    Hi,

    OK. So let's see what we need for the format:
    Data saved to 2 + copies - done.
    Programs saved for installation after format - done.
    Windows disk + licence number - done (?).

    Print these instructions before you start the format. You will not be able to see them.

    First, you must be able to boot from cd.
    To do that, do the following:
    Hit either f2 or del key during first seconds after switching on the computer. Watch the screen. You will most likely see a message saying - press 'key' to access setup. 'Key' is most likely f2 or del.
    Once you enter the setup, look for something called boot sequence.
    Use your arrows keys or space (instructions will BE at the BOTTOM or the TOP of the screen, most likely) to place CD ROM before HDD.
    Save the changes.
    Exit.
    Now let's see if you managed it.
    Place your Windows disk inside and restart.
    If your computer boots from the disk, you're successful. If not, we'll try to solve the problem.

    How to format and install the Windows?
    It's really not difficult.

    UNPLUG THE INTERNET LINE FROM THE WALL!

    REMEMBER. ALL INSTRUCTIONS ARE WRITTEN ON THE SCREEN. I MIGHT GET A NUMBER OR LETTER WRONG, BUT DON'T LET THAT STOP YOU. JUST READ THE SCREEN INSTRUCTIONS AND PROCEED. IT'S SIMPLE.

    1. You must agree to Microsoft EULA to proceed. I think you need to press F8.
    2. It will ask you what you want to do - install or repair - you want to install.
    3. It will ask you about partitions.
    4. Now, write down the size of the existing partition (like 39,455Mb).
    5. Delete the existing partition.
    6. Create a new partition of the same size as above.
    7. There will be extra 8Mb or so left - leave them be.
    8. After creating new partition, it must be formatted - format it in NTFS file system.
    9. This can take about 15-30 min.
    10. Select this partition and install your Windows into it.
    11. You will need to enter your username, the licence and few more settings. Nothing special. All in all, the installation should take about 20-40 min.

    Now, once in Windows.

    1. Install the firewall. Reboot.
    2. Install the anti-virus. Reboot.
    3. Install Firefox browser.
    4. Install Java.
    5. Connect to the internet.
    6. Launch IE for Windows Update. If ZoneAlarm prompts you, allow IE to connect. Download all updates.
    7. Once there are no more updates, install the rest of the security programs. Update them to maximum using their built-in updaters. Try a scan with each to see how they feel.
    8. Install the Thunderbird mail client. It is better and safer than OE. You can also import all your mails and contacts.
    9. Set the first restore point in System Restore - call it Fresh Start.
    10. Copy your personal data back onto the computer.

    Your machine is now clean and ready to roll.

    You should also do the following:
    1. Disable Guest Account in the User Accounts (unless you want the son to use it).
    2. Password your account with a strong password.
    3. Reboot in safe mode and password the original Administrator account.
    4. Use Firefox for browsing - it's similar to IE, only much safer.

    I know this is a lot of information, but let's try. You have nothing to lose. Your data is saved on the disk. If you do not succeed you can always try again.

    Mrk
     
  17. lost&confused

    lost&confused Registered Member

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    Mrk,
    OK, I think I understand all the instructions, and I am printing them now. I made a 3rd copy of my data, with fresh from the sites files of the downloads, so they shouldn't be jinxed by my bad computer luck of late. The deleting the partition should remove all the left over stuff, and then I have a fresh start. Once I get to the point that I can get online (crossing fingers and toes here) I can always ask you for further instructions.
    Here I go, wish me luck,
    evy
     
  18. lost&confused

    lost&confused Registered Member

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    Mrk and everybody else,
    Thank ya'll so much for all you have done. I made it through the reinstall with only one problem, which was my own fault, I couldnt figure out the modem for a long time. The computer is running great.
    Mrk, you might be interested in knowing that some other computer has been trying to get in mine several times in just the hour or so that I have had the internet back up and running. The zone alarm is working great.
    I am so glad I found ya'll, it has been a pleasure being here, even if it is under nasty situations.
    Mrk, I am going to try and find that A to Z list you mentioned, and see if I can do at least some of it.
    Hugs to all of you,
    just`i
     
  19. zapjb

    zapjb Registered Member

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    USA - Back in a real State in time for a real Pres
    I am so glad L&C, you're getting it sorted. I like to see someone educating themselves. And thanks Mrkvonic for helping her out. With simplified detailed help.:D
     
  20. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    Hello,
    Cheers!
    Have a good time.
    Mrk
     
  21. Milken

    Milken Registered Member

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    20
    Shortly after turning the computer on you will see an option to press <DEL> or some other button, It'll be the BIOS.
    It doesn't seem like "DON'T GET ON THE COMPUTER!" will work on your son. Best of luck and have fun learning, I know I am.
     
  22. Tassie_Devils

    Tassie_Devils Global Moderator

    Joined:
    May 8, 2002
    Posts:
    2,514
    Location:
    State Queensland, Australia
    I've been following this thread with interest, and I must congratulate Mrkvonic on an excellent series of posts for helping out lostandconfused with her PC problems. Well done indeed :thumb:

    The fact you stuck with her thru it all and I know for one that people like you helping on the forum is what makes this place so great. :D

    Warmest regards to you Mrkvonic. :thumb:

    Cheers, TAS
     
  23. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

    Joined:
    May 9, 2005
    Posts:
    8,700
    Hi,
    Thank you, mate.
    Cheers,
    Mrk
     
  24. tamba1

    tamba1 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2006
    Posts:
    54
    Location:
    UK
    Hi Mrkvonic

    Firstly WHAT a fantastic guide you put together for this lady I have read it from beginning to end and it has helped allay some of my fears re this process, thankfully I have never had to do this though one day I am sure the day will come, I have printed off yoru guide and will sotre it for safekeeping.

    My question ( please dont laugh) is to do with having to Reformat my PC , Reinstalling Windows XP and all the sware etc.

    I have read sooooo much on teh web alot of it seemed to be mumbo jumbo online in various sites about what you do /dont need to do or have backed up on CD that I am really not sure and decided to find out from an expert like yourself.

    I have a Dell Dimension 4550 running WinXP Prof and Service pack 2, and have been told by various peeps that my Windows installation CD and rescue disks etc are useless now that I am on SP2 and the ONLY way I can reforamt CD is with a "slipstream CD" . I looked up how to create a slipstream CD and although the article was VERY good it is not someting I feel upto doing at present.

    I ought to say I have been ill for several years now and my brain is fuzzy to say the least and what used to be the simplest of tasks have become major challenges.

    With this in mind would you be able to confirm what I do /dont need in order to successfully reformat with my PC when the time comes.

    Also again please dont laugh I have a new keyboard to install would you possibly be able to confirm in steps what I need to do.

    I really look forward to your reply

    Thanks in advance
    tamba1
     
  25. WSFuser

    WSFuser Registered Member

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2004
    Posts:
    10,632
    if u plan on formatting ur hard disk, then u should be able to use ur Dell restore discs. and of course, u will have to reinstall SP2 and all ur apps afterwards. if u want to repair ur current installation then thats where u would need a windows xp with sp2 cd (im not 100% certain tho).
     
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