Computer Issues and resolutions

Computer issues and their resolution can be frustrating and time-consuming and if you are non computer savvy, expensive.

Searching through forums can a big waste of time, although you just may sometimes find a solution. Most of the people who respond to these forums have no clue to what your problem is and further more have not read what you have described as your problem. This includes so-called experts from the software developers and manufacturers. More and more irrelevant questions are asked. Some armchair technicians will tell you that all your problems are the result of a virus.

I worked in computer support for many years and I prided myself in finding solutions, not work around’s. I will share what I have found.

Remember you must use logic to solve issues.

If you make music or films you will have to deal with computers. Knowing something about them will save you time and money.

power supply issue

USB ports not recognizing some devices.

Test the same devices in another computer. If they work in another, then they work, simple.

Hard drives slow to sort files.

If you can, try the hard drive in another machine. A great device is a hard drive docking station which allows you to test an uninstalled hard drive via USB. This can also serve as a back up drive.

hard drive docking station
hard drive docking station

Hard drives disappearing from Windows explorer.

This can also be caused by a failing drive. In my case it was not always the same drive that went AWOL.

windows explorer
windows explorer

For the record, this was my set up.

Computer : not always relevant.   5 years old

Runs 7 days a week for a minimum of 19 hours

processor i5 4 core   3550  3.3 Ghz  lga1155   Ivy Bridge   socket 1155

MB:  gigabyte Z77-D3H   rev 1.0

Memory memory 16 GB DDR3

HD   500GB   500GB   250GB

Windows 7 Ultimate

details of my problem

For several months my front case USB port would only recognize passive USB devices such as thumb drives.

Hard drives were slow to sort files ( changing view to sort by date ).

My passive Seagate 1TB USB back-up drive was not recognized on any USB port. Nor did my ports always recognize my Lumix camera.

The Mouse was freezing every few seconds for a millisecond or so.

I read on-line forums and articles. Everyone seemed to point to Motherboard and USB issues.

I reinstalled my USB drivers. I had a USB controller that had the yellow ? in Device Manager.

I re-installed the BIOS.

Still no go. I just lived with the issues until my main HD started to fail. I tried cloning it but it was too late. So I installed a new drive. Installed a clean version of Windows 7.  Copied my files and then re-installed my programs.

Still I had the same issues. So I just lived with the issues.

Then after removing a failing 250 GB drive and installing a 1TB drive , the 1TB drive would disappear when moving large amount of files to it. ( 35 GB-60 GB)

Other drives too could disappear.

a few BSOD’s

typical blue screen of death
typical blue screen of death  Not mine but a typical example of a system crash.

After reading many computer forum and manufacturer/developer sites. I finally found about two people who suggested to look at the power supply. I had seen power supplies die but it never occurred to me that they weakened.

If I had used logic I many have figured this out sooner. Passive USB devices use the computer’s power. Thumb drives use very little. My Back-up drive uses a lot.

So I installed a new 500 watt power supply.

Computer power supply
Computer power supply

Results

None of the drives disappear.

My backup drive is now recognized.

File sorts is super fast.

Mouse seems to be OK

I still have  a USB controller that had the yellow ? in Device Manager. Maybe I’ll figure this out one day.

So it seems that the problem was the power supply. I hope this can help some of you experiencing similar issues.

USB port not recognizing devices

This also can cause some USB devices not to be recognized.

Click on Start , then computer, then system properties, Then advanced system settings, then device installation settings

Make sure that ” Yes, do this automatically ( recommended) is checked.