Monday, 2 November 2015

Short URL for your links

Day by days, users are using various form of services like Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp and Viber, etc… to communicate with others and send/receive messages. Some of these services allow users to type only limited number of characters in single message. Hence, if you would like to a link which has long URL, you will need to shorten your URL in such a way that it still directs users to correct page on Internet.

 You can achieve this by a method call URL shortening, it is a unique way to convert your long URL in to shorter length and still directs user to correct page. For an example, http://goo.gl/1uSLM0 is shorted URL for our blogs’ main page: http://blog.techietalks.co.uk. You can create a separate short link for each of your webpages or blogs.

The main advantage of a short link is that it can be easily communicated and typed without any error.

Users don’t need to change their current configuration or possess in-depth technical knowledge. There are various sites who offer users to shorten their URL online. Some of them are:

Google URL Shortner - https://goo.gl/  
Bitly URL Shortner – https://bitly.com/
TinyURL – tinyurl.com/
Hotsuite – ow.ly/   
Twitter – t.co/


This article gives you basic idea on URL Shortening. If you would like to know more about this, please leave a comment or contact us via Contact US Page. 

Friday, 30 October 2015

User account locks out frequently

One of my colleagues recently changed his password. Since then, his domain account keeps locking out frequently even though he enters correct password. He asked me to investigate why does this happen?

There are multiple reasons, why domain account locks out frequently. First of all, I suggest you to find out when user’s account got locked and on what Domain Controller (DC). If user logs on to more than 1 PC, it may be possible that one of the PC is still using expired password. You can use Lockout status tool offered by Microsoft. It’s free tool, CLICK HERE to download it. Using this tool, you can find out that account is locked on any particular DC. Once you’ve identified correct DC, check the event log of that DC to locate the PC name.

If user doesn’t log on to any other PC, log in to his/her PC locally or remotely. Try to locate any services or schedule task running using user’s credential. You will have to restart services or schedule task using their current login details. Also, it is worth trying to remap networks drives. It may be possible that user has mapped a drive to a resource from another PC and on that PC; he/she has modified their password.

Please check with user if he/she using any mobile devices or tablets with an embedded password which could be trying to authenticate using wrong password. 

Please leave comments in comment box if you find this article informative.

Monday, 26 October 2015

Fixed: HTC One M8 USB driver doesn’t recognized by Windows 10

Hi friends, recently I upgraded my Windows 7 OS to Windows 10 on my laptop. Everything was working fine until I plugged my HTC One M8 (Android) phone to laptop using USB cable. A message box appeared stating that it could not detect the USB device. I never had any problem when I was using Windows 7. I used to plug my phone to PC using USB cable and access phone storage as USB drive.

I typed my query in google and most of the articles suggested that I should installed HTC Sync Manager and then connect my phone. Well, I installed the required application but it did not resolve the issue. Hence, I removed it.

This is my 3rd HTC phone and I started to find out how I can enable USB debugging mode on my phone. This option is hidden by default. To enable this option, follow these steps: 
  1. Go to Settings \ About
  2. Select Software Information
  3. Click on More option
  4. Now, tap on Build number option six times in a row. A message will be shown saying “You are now a developer!
  5. Go back to Settings. You will find Developer options just above About.
  6. Select Developer options.
  7. Tick the box for USB debugging mode option and return to main screen. 
Once you’ve made above change, plug your phone using USB cable. Windows 10 will recognizes USB drivers this time and you will be able to access phone storage as USB drive. In this method, you don’t need to install any additional applications.

If you are using a different make & model phone and would like to find out how to find out developers option, please leave a comment or contact us Contact Us page.

Thursday, 8 October 2015

iPhone / iPad cloning

This is my very first blog on Apple products: iPhone and iPad. One of my friends recently bought a new iPhone. Now, she has two iPhones. She asked me how she can apply same settings and apps to her new iPhone. Well, this is very easy to achieve if you have PC, iTunes software and your iPhone / iPad.

First of all, we will have to take a backup of our current iPhone or iPad. To do this follows these steps:
  • Launch iTunes application on your PC.
  • Connect your device using USB cable.
  • To save content that you have downloaded from iTunes store or App store, click on File \ Devices \ Transfer Purchases. Please wait till it finishes.
  • Go to iTunes preferences \ Devices to check if back up finished successfully. You will find a name of your device with date and time of backup created.
Once you have backed up your device successfully, you can restore it on same device or a new device. To restore backup on a device using iTunes, follow these steps:
  • Connect your device to the PC where you saved your backup.
  • Launch iTunes, if iTunes prompts regarding new iOS update, please get the latest version of iOS.
  • Now, go to File \ Devices Restore from back.
  • Look at the date and size of each backup (if you’ve multiple backup) and select the most recent backup.
  • Click on Restore and wait for the process to complete. Your device will restart and sync with PC. Please keep your device plugged in until sync process is finished.
If you are using same Apple ID on all devices, you can sync your devises so that you can download app on one devices and it will be installed on rest of your devices automatically. This includes free apps also. On your device, go to Settings and then iTunes and App Store. Enable Apps option in Automatic Downloads option. You can sync your photos, videos, music, books and updates also.

Hope this will help you to setup multiple iPhone(S) or iPad(s) easily. Do not forget to leave a comment, if you find this blog very informative.

Monday, 5 October 2015

Reverting back to Android Kitkat OS from Android Lollipop OS

Today, I am publishing my very first blog on Android OS. I have been asked to provide a solution to revert Android OS from Lollipop version to Kitkat. I am using Lenovo A6000 smart phone to explain the process. Steps may vary for other make and model of your smart phone.

Let’s begin by going through check list before we actually start downgrade process.
  • Take a backup of your personal data like pictures, videos, etc…
  • Make sure that phone’s battery is charged enough. I suggest 50 % charged battery.
  • You will need to install TWRP Recovery. Team Win Recovery Project (TWRP) helps to flash customer ROMs or stock ROMs. It helps user to revert back to Android KitKat OS.
  • Download Official Stock ROM Lenovo A6000 – Kitkat
  • Free space on your SD card of the phone
After you have completed check list, let’s start the process:
  • First of all, copy stock ROM on your SD card
  • Boot your phone in to recovery mode
  • Make a full system wipe of cache, data, etc using Format button.
  • Go to main screen and select Install. In next screen, go one level up and choose SD card.
  • Select the Stock ROM zip file and perform Swipe Install
  • When you see a completion message, perform Reboot to System
I hope this information will be very useful to you to downgrade Android OS on your phone. If you need any further information or wants to know from where you can get a copy of TWRP or Stock ROMs, please drop us a comment with your email address.

Monday, 21 September 2015

Creating bootable USB disk from Windows OS

Today, I would like to share my knowledge on how to make bootable USB drive without any third party applications. To begin with, you will need a USB flash drive, any version of Windows OS ISO or DVD and Windows running PC. As part of the process, USB disk will be erased fully. Please make sure that you have copied or removed your important data from USB disk.

I will use DiskPart command to make bootable USB disk. Let’s start with the process:
  • Run Command prompt as an administrator.
  • Type DiskPart and press Enter. You will see that command prompt is changed to DISKPART> now.
  • Type List Disk Command. It will show you all available disks in PC.
    • DISKPART> List Disk
  • Next step is to select the correct Disk that reflects your USB disk. To find this out, type below command:
    • DISKPART> Select Disk n (n should be the number of your disk from previous command)
      • You should see a message: “Disk 3 is now the selected disk.”
  • Now, clean the USB disk using Clean command.
    • DISKPART> Clean
      • It will show, “DiskPart succeeded in cleaning the disk.”
  • Now, enter the following sets of commands in this order
    • DSIKPART> SELECT DISK 3
    • CREATE PARTITION PRIMARY
    • SELECT PARTITION 1
    • ACTIVE
    • FORMAT FS=NTFS
  • Formatting of your USB drive may vary from its size. Once it’s completed, type below two commands:
    • DSIKPART> ASSIGN
      • It shows, “DiskPart successfully assigned the drive letter or mount point.”
  • DISKPART> exit
At this point, you will come out from DiskPart utility and will use your command prompt to follow next process.

Type D: cd boot (D: represents my DVD drive, please change it to appropriate drive letter as per your PC’s configuration)

Enter command, cd boot

Now, type bootsect.exe /nt60 E: ( E: drive represents my USB Disk drive)

Once this command has been executed successfully, you can exit the command prompt. Now, copy all files on Windows 7 DVD to the USB drive.

Your USB Disk is ready with bootable option. To test this, please restart your PC and choose boot from USB. I hope you liked this article, please leave your comments below.

Monday, 14 September 2015

Group policy – Basics explained

One of the followers of my blog requested to explain the basics of Group policy in simple words. Group policy itself is a very wide topic  in this single post. But let's start with basic first.

Group Policy is a feature from Microsoft server operating systems. It allows modifying working environment of user accounts and computer accounts. It offers centralized management and configuration of OS, applications and users’ settings in domain environment. You can outline, impose or modify configuration by using the settings in Group Policy Objects (GPO). Once you create relevant GPO, you can link it to site, domain, OU or child OU.

You can divide group policies into two categories:
  • Domain based policy: These types of policies are created in AD DS and stored in domain controllers. They are used to manage configuration of domain users and computers.
  • Local group policy: These types of policies are configured locally on a PC. You can configure users’ settings who log on to that PC or Computer settings.
If you are an administrator of your network or have administrator privileges, you can create new or edit existing group policy from Group Policy Management Console (GPMC). In the Group policy management editor, you can double click on policy to open policy’s properties box. Within properties box, you can select Not Configured, Enabled or Disabled for given settings. By default, policy setting is set to Not Configured in new GPO. When you modify it to either Enabled or Disabled, a change is made to user or computer configuration to which GPO is applied.

When PC is switched ON, computer configuration is been applied. When user logs in to PC, user configuration takes effect.

Group policy is been processed in following processing order:
  1. Local GPOs – The local policies apply first.
  2. Site-linked GPOs – Policies configured at Site level applies second in Domain joined PC/user.
  3. Domain linked GPOs- Policies that linked to Domain applied after Site-Linked GPOs.
  4. OU (Organization Unit) linked GPOs – Policies applied to OU applied after Domain linked GPOs.
  5. Child OU linked GPOs – Child OU linked policies apply fifth in processing order.
In case of configuring conflicting GPOs, whichever policy applies last wins. For example, between local policy and domain policy settings, domain policy settings are in effect.

As stated earlier, group policy is a huge topic to cover. If you would like to know more on this, please let us know. We will publish further posts with advance information on group policy including how to create, modify and link it to OU and many more.

Tuesday, 8 September 2015

Excel file opens up with blank screen in Excel

I have been asked to help a user with her Excel issue. At first, I thought I may have to write some Excel formula. But I was wrong. When I called her, she explained to me that she was unable to open certain Excel spread sheets. She said that whenever she opens these files, Excel opens with blank window.

I thought let me check it myself. Hence, I logged in to her PC remotely and tried to access same files. Yes, Excel window comes up but it does not show any data. User claimed that she had accessed file couple of hours back. Other users can open same files on their PCs without any issues.

I asked her to press CTRL + F10 key together while the file is open in Excel. Issue is resolved. It is a shortcut key to maximize or restore the selected workbook window. Now, she is able to view all files. I would suggest trying some other steps also, they are mentioned below:

  • Check if Excel has been setup as Run as Administrator.
  • Check the box “Run as administrator” on Excel shortcut.
  • Load Excel file. Go to View, select Full Screen. If you can see the file properly, close and restart it same way.


I hope you will find this article very useful.

Thursday, 3 September 2015

How to print multiple files without opening them

During my recent conversation with one of my friends, he mentioned that he had to print a large number of PDF documents. He was frustrated as he had to open each file to send it to a printer for printing. He asked me if there are any ways where he can avoid opening each file before sending it to printer.

Yes, it is possible. I did my testing on Windows 7 PC. There are two ways to achieve this. The easiest way is:

  • Select the multiple files of same format e.g. all PDFs or all DOCXs
  • Right click on any selected file
  • In context menu, click on Print
In this method, you can print up to 15 files together and cannot mix two different types of file format like one PDF document and one word document.

There is another way in which you can print different file formats together. To achieve this, follow these steps:

  • Click on Start and select Devices and Printers
  • Double click on printer to open print queue box
  • Drag files you would like to print into print queue box.
  • Click OK on a dialog box that confirms that you want to print multiple files at once.
I hope you find this article very useful. 

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Unable to log you on because of an account restriction

One of my friends asked me to help him with his IT issue. He is trying to connect to a PC using Remote Desktop connection and getting error “Unable to log you on because of an account restriction.”

To begin with, I verified that the user account is part of local administrator group and Remote Desktop users on a remote PC. Also, I asked him to make sure that he has enabled Remote Desktop on that PC. He replied affirmatively that user account is part of necessary groups and PC is enabled to accept remote connection. He also mentioned that he can log in locally using same account but receives error message when he is trying to connect remotely.

During further questioning about his current setup of a PC, I figured out that, he is using blank (null) password for the user account. If you are trying to log in to a PC remotely with a user account which has been setup with blank password, Remote Desktop connection cannot be established and you receive above error message.

There is an easy fix for this, log in to PC locally and set a password for the user account. Now, you will be able to log in to PC remotely using new password.

Please leave your comment below if you find this article informative.

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Setting up Terminal Server and installing applications for TS Users

Hi everyone, I would like to share my knowledge on how to install Terminal Server role and install applications for Terminal Server users. To explain the whole process in better way, I fragmented it in to three different stages.

  1. Installing Terminal Server Role on existing server
  2. Configuring Remote connection settings for users
  3. Installing Applications on Terminal Server (TS)

Installing Terminal Server Role on existing server

Let’s start the process. First of all, we have to install Terminal Server Role on a server. Please follow these steps to install Terminal Server role:
  • Log in to server where terminal server role will be installed
  • Go to Server Manager
  • Run Add Role Wizard by clicking on Add Roles
  • Select Terminal Services role, click next twice.
  • Select below Role services to install and click Next
    • Terminal Server
  • On Uninstall and Reinstall Applications for Compatibility option, click Next.
  • On Specify Authentication Method for Terminal Server page, Select Do not require network Level Authentication. Click Next
  • On Specify Licencing Mode, select Configure later and click Next
  • On Select User Groups Allowed Access to This Terminal Sever, add Domain users and click Next
  • Click on Install
  • It will take some time to install Terminal Services. Once it is installed, click on Close and restart the server
  • Once server is restarted, installation will resume.  Click on Close once it’s finished
  • Go to Sever Manager, Click on Terminal Services. Under System services, verify that Terminal services are Running. Also, under Role Services, make sure that Terminal Server has a status of Installed


Configuring Remote connection settings for users

Once the Terminal Server role is installed on a given server, next step in the process is to configure remote connection settings for users so that they can log in to server through Remote Desktop Connection (RDP) tool. Follow these steps on your Terminal Server.
  • Go to Start -> Control Panel -> System.
  • Under Task, Click on remote Settings
  • Select Allow connections from computers running any version of Remote Desktop.
  • Click on Select Users. Confirm that Domain_Name\Domain Users is already added there. Click on OK twice.


Installing Applications on Terminal Server (TS)

At this stage, you’ve successfully installed Terminal server role and configured your server so that other users can log in to server via Remote Desktop Connection tool. Next step in the process is to install an application program for users. Here are the guidelines to install an application on Terminal Server:

  • Log in to TS using your admin account.
  • Click Start, click Run, type Cmd, and then click OK.
  • At the command prompt, type the following command, and then press ENTER: Change user /install
  • Run the automated installation exactly as you would do on a client computer.
  • When the automated installation is complete, configure the Remote Desktop Services-enabled computer for execute mode.
  • To enable computer for execute mode, At the command prompt, type the following command, and then press ENTER: Change user /execute


Congratulations!!! You’ve successfully setup a Terminal server and installed an application for domain users. Users can use either Server name or an IP address to connect to server using RDP tool.


If you find this article very informative, please leave comment in comment box. Keep visiting this blog, we regularly add more articles on IT support issues. 

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Windows Operating Systems life cycle

At regular interval, Microsoft stops providing support to their previous Operating System. I am wondering how many people know about it and do they really understand the effect of this on their PCs. Hence, I thought about writing this article.

Every Microsoft product has its lifecycle. It starts when it was launched and ends when it is no longer been supported. It is useful to know when your OS is no longer being supported so that you can take decision about upgrading OS and make necessary changes to your applications.

Microsoft announces End of Support date for their products that means from that particular date, Microsoft will no longer offer any fixes, updates or technical assistance of that product. As a user, you will have to make sure that you’ve installed latest update or service pack available for that program.

Here are some key dates from Microsoft:

Operating System
Latest update or Service pack
End of mainstream support
End of extended support
Windows XP
Service Pack 3
14/04/2009
08/04/2014
Windows Vista
Service Pack 2
10/04/2012
11/04/2014
Windows 7
Service Pack 1
13/01/2015
14/01/2020
Windows 8
Windows 8.1
09/01/2018
10/01/2023
Windows 10
N/A
13/10/2020
14/10/2025

Note: To continue receiving support for Windows 7, please make sure that you’ve installed Service Pack 1.

Windows Servers’ End of Life support dates are:

Operating System
End of mainstream support
End of extended support
Windows Server 2003
31/07/2010
14/07/2015
Windows Server 2008
06/05/2008
14/01/2020
Windows Server 2012
09/01/2018
10/01/2023
Windows Server 2012 R2
09/01/2018
10/01/2023


If you find this article very useful, please leave a comment in the comment box.

Friday, 21 August 2015

Unable to modify service status from Services.msc in Windows 7

Recently, I was doing a troubleshooting on one of the Windows 7 PCs and came across this situation. As a part of my troubleshooting steps, I had to check whether relevant service is running or not for that particular program. When I launched services.msc, I found that required services were not running.

I thought it’s very simple; I will double click on service to open its properties box. Within that properties box, I will change Startup Type to Automatic and run service by clicking on Start button. But it wasn’t that easy because options to Start and Startup type were disabled and I could not change them. (I ran Services.msc as an Administrator)

Now, I had to find a way to enable options in Services so that I can start it. To di this, I had to make changes to Registry key. I went through following steps to make necessary changes in Registry to allow me to make amendments in services’ properties box.
  • Open Registry as an Administrator (Start > type Regedit in the search box)
  • Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\services\<Program name>
  • Right-click the registry key and choose Permissions.
  • Click Advanced, and then click Owner.
  • Choose Administrators and check the Replace owner on subcontainers and objects box.
  • Exit the permissions dialog and then open it again.
  • Click Advanced, then choose Administrators and click Edit…
  • Check Allow underneath Full Control, and then click OK.
  • Check Replace all child object permissions with inheritable permissions from this object.  Click OK and confirm; exit.

Now, go back to Services.msc and open services’ properties box. You should be able to make changes.

If you find this article very useful, please leave a comment in comment box.

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

Having difficulty to redirect your blog to sub-domain URL?

Hi all, today I want to share my experience of setting up redirect my blogs to custom sub-domain URL. Well, you might think that’s very easy, search for help on website on which you have your blog and you will get your answer.

I partially agree with the above statement. Here is my story. I started to write blog on blogger.com and have http://arpitbhavsar.blogspot.com URL for my blogs. I also own www.TechieTalks.co.uk domain. I am also working on designing a website that helps IT support professionals all latest news and security updates for various platforms like Microsoft, VMWare, Linux, Apple, Android and third party applications.

After I logged in Blogger.com, I followed the below steps to setup redirect to my custom sub-domain URL.
  • I clicked on Basic option under Settings in left-side column.
  • In the Publishing section, I clicked on link to add custom domain.
  • An option appeared to write sub-domain like. Blog.aarsuh.co.uk. I clicked on Save button.
  • An error message (Error 12) prompted and two CNAME records were shown on the screen. I was advised to enter these CNAME records in to control panel in my Domain Registrar’s DNS settings. There was nice handy link to follow steps on how to add these CNAME records in to control panel of my domain’s DNS settings on domain registrar’s website.

I followed those steps, but my redirect wasn't working. After spending reasonable amount of time on Internet to find some help, I was going nowhere. Every page, I had seen, suggested to follow same steps. They were assumed that domain registrar and hosting provider is same. If this was the case, steps mentioned in help articles on Blogger.com would have worked. But in my case, domain registrar and hosting provider are different. I am sure there will be other people who would have been in same position as me.

So, my domain registrar has been updated with DNS server info provided by my Hosting provider. Hence, Anyone trying to resolve my domain name, the request has been forwarded to my hosting provider. Then, I decided to create the CNAME records (mentioned by blogger.com) in control panel of my hosting provider’s.

As soon as I have created required CNAME records in hosting provider’s control panel, Blogger.com was able to verify my sub-domain URL and redirected my request. Within few minutes, I was able to access my blogs from my customer domain i.e. http://blog.TechieTalks.co.uk.

If you find this information useful, please leave comment in the comment box.

How to recover lost local admin password on Windows Server 2008

Today, I received a query from one of the followers of my blogs about how to recover lost local admin password on Windows Standard 2008. From the given information, I understand that he had installed Windows Standard 2008 server on a PC and made it a domain controller. He used to log in to server locally by using Administrator account. Now, he can’t log in to PC, as he doesn’t remember the password. He asked me if I could suggest some solutions to overcome this situation and save his time to install Server again. In addition to that, he said that he doesn’t have server installation disk.

I thought, it’s very challenging, as he doesn’t want to reinstall server. So, my first reaction was, let me test this on virtual PC running on my Server. I installed Windows Server Standard 2008 and made it domain controller.

Now, I was ready to try different things to see if I can recover local admin password. So, I started to search on Internet. I found couple of ways to do it. First option is if user has official Windows Server 2008 DVD from Microsoft and second option is to use third party tool to recover password. I will go though both options one by one.

Using Official Windows Server 2008 DVD:
  1. Insert the disk into PC and boot PC from DVD
  2. Select “Repair your computer”
  3. Launch CMD (Command Prompt)
  4. Navigate to C:\Windows\System32
  5. Rename Utilman.exe file to Utilman.exe.bak
  6. Copy Cmd.exe to Utilman.exe
  7. Restart PC
  8. When login screen appears, press Windows key + “U” key together.
  9. Type following command in to Command prompts: net user administrator <newpassword>
  10. Restart server and boot it using DVD. Follow the above steps from1 to 4 and rename Utilman.exe.back to Utilman.exe



Note: I haven’t tried ISO image downloaded from Microsoft but it’s worth giving a try, if you don’t have official DVD.

Now, moving on to another stage where we don’t have official server disk. In this case, there are third party utilities available on Internet that we can try. I came across one of such utilities, called “Windows Password Rescuer Advanced”. It will not only recover lost local and domain password but also password for Active Directory Domain administrator. You can use this application to reset Windows Local administrator and user password from Windows Vista and above plus Windows server 2000 and above.

  • Download “Windows Password Rescuer Advanced” full version on other PC and install it.
  • Run the application to create Windows password recovery disk with disk or USB.
  • Insert Windows password recovery disk/USB to server and boot PC from it.
  • Application will start automatically and graphical interface appear.
  • Select the appropriate Windows Operating System from the list.
  • Click on Administrator account from users’ list.
  • Click on Reset Password option when a confirm message pops up, click Yes
  • Click on Restart button to reboot server. Eject your disk/USB to so that server boots in normal way.
  • At the logon screen, login as Administrator with new password.



You can find more information this utility by visiting this link: http://www.wimware.com/windows-password-recovery/



I hope you find this article information. If you like this article, please leave your comments in comment box.

Tuesday, 18 August 2015

Free alternative of Microsoft Office program

There is no doubt that Microsoft Office is most popular among home and business users to create, modify or edit documents, spread sheets and presentations. I was wondering that if there are any other similar products available which are free. Then I began my search and found some useful information which I thought to share with all.

  • Google Docs – Google Docs is been front runner of open office suite for various reason. The reason I like it most is it’s free and can be access virtually from anywhere. Google provides Word process, spread sheets, presentations tools other basic stiff via cloud-based Google drive. User will need a Google account to log in to Google Drive.
  • OpenOffice – OpenOffice is available free and suitable for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux platforms. OpenOffice software package comes with tools for creating word documents, spread sheets, databases, presentations and a slew of other common file types.
  • FreeOffice – As the name suggest, FreeOffice is available free for Windows and Linux OS. To get a serial key from company, user will need to provide his/her email address only.
  • LibreOffice 4 – libreOffice 4 is compatible to run on Windows Mac OS X and Linux platforms and is available free.
  • WPS Office – WPS Office is available free and suitable to run on Windows, iOS and Android OS.



I suggest checking the features of each of the above in details and deciding which option suits your needs better. If you like this article, please feel free to leave your comments here or send your suggestions / feedback to us via Contact US link.

Monday, 17 August 2015

To download Microsoft Office 365 Home / Personal edition

One of my friends told me that he would like to download latest Microsoft office application suite and looking for some guidance on it. It was obvious that he wasn’t aware of Microsoft Office 365 application suite.

There are two editions for home use: Office365 Personal and Office 365 home. Both versions are free to try for a month. After trial period is over, users will have to pay subscription fees (can be paid monthly or yearly) User can cancel subscription at any time. There are other versions available for students and businesses.

Next question is, whether to buy Home edition or Personal edition? Well, Home edition will cover 5 PCs or Macs, 5 Tablets and 5 Phones, Online versions of office applications like Word, Excel, PowerPpoint and OneNote, 1 TB online storage each for up to 5 users, Skype – 60 Minutes/month for up to 5 users each and many more. In Personal edition, one gets same benefits as Home edition but it is limited for 1 user only. One should consider on how many PCs/Tablets/Phones they would like to install Office application and how many users will be using it?

To download new Office 365 Home or Personal edition, click on following link:


I am sure, I will be asked if there are any free alternatives to Microsoft Office application suite. I will answer that in my next blog. I hope you find this information very useful.

Friday, 14 August 2015

How to remove program name from Add/Remove Program list

My nephew and I were having a conversation about his current IT project. He asked me that he has removed an application using its uninstaller file from that application folder but it is still being listed in Add/Remove Program list. He wants to know how can he remove it from there also.

Most of the time, whenever we launch uninstaller of an application, it removes everything related to that program from a PC. In some cases, a program's registry key that is used to display program name is not removed correctly during uninstall process. To fix this, follow these steps:
  • Click on Start, type Regedit.exe and press Enter key. (Make sure you have taken backup of your registry before you move on to next step).
  • Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall
  • You will find several keys under Uninstall option. Each key represents a program which is been listed in Add/Remove program list.
  • To find out correct key of your program, click on each key. Information will be shown in right side box related to that key.
  • Check DisplayName - it shows the name of program that appears in Add/Remove program list
  • Find the appropriate key by matching your application name in DisplayName field.
  • Once you've identified the correct key that represents the program, you would like to remove from your Add/Remove program list, right click on key and select Delete.
  • Now, go to Start \ Control Panel \ Program and Features and confirm that program is not being listed there any more.
I can't stress more that you should backup your registry first before making any changes. I hope that you will find this article very useful.  Enjoy your rest of the day. :-)

Thursday, 13 August 2015

How to retrieve data from faulty Laptop/PC

One of my friends called me today and asked for an advice on how to retrieve data from his faulty laptop. Few months' back, his laptop had physical damage but it was running OK. As he just uses laptop to surf Internet, access his emails and watch videos, he never bothered to get his laptop repaired or checked at that time.

Now, his laptop doesn't boot up. He had saved his photos & videos of his holidays and some other personal data which he would like to have them back before he dispose it. 

I explained him that if his HDD is not failed, he will be able to retrieve his data. He will need a HDD docking station and another PC/Laptop (You can buy it either online or from nearest IT shop). I have advised him to follow these steps:

  • Remove HDD from his faulty laptop.
  • Connect the docking station into another laptop/PC.
  • Insert his Hard Drive in to HDD Docking station.
  • Switch on the Docking station.
  • His Hard Drive will be detected as external drive on running laptop/PC. You can access it in  Windows Explorer. 
  • From here, you can copy data to currently running PC or to another external HDD.
Thanks for taking time to read this article.I hope you find this useful.

Unable to add client PC (VM) to Domain controller (VM) running on Hyper-V host

I would like to share my knowledge I gained while troubleshooting IT related issues. Recently, I set up a Host server that runs Windows Server 2012 Standard R2. I made this server as my Hyper-V host. My plan was to add few VMs and setup my own small lab at home.
I added a VM on my host PC that runs Windows Server 2012 Standard R2. I made this VM as my domain controller (DC1.Contoso.com). I setup few users and group policies. Then I added another VM that runs Windows 10. I wanted to add this PC to domain so that I can test group policies and other stuff. But, while trying to add my client PC to domain, I received an error message.
Error message:
Note: This information is intended for a network administrator.  If you are not your network’s administrator, notify the administrator that you received this information, which has been recorded in the file C:\Windows\debug\dcdiag.txt. The following error occurred when DNS was queried for the service location (SRV) resource record used to locate an Active Directory Domain Controller for domain contoso.com:
The error was: “DNS name does not exist.”
(error code 0x0000232B RCODE_NAME_ERROR) The query was for the SRV record for _ldap._tcp.dc._msdcs.contoso.com Common causes of this error include the following: - The DNS SRV records required to locate a AD DC for the domain are not registered in DNS.
These records are registered with a DNS server automatically when a AD DC is added to a domain. They are updated by the AD DC at set intervals. This computer is configured to use DNS servers with the following IP addresses:
192.168.1.1
192.168.1.151
- One or more of the following zones do not include delegation to its child zone:
contoso
.com
. (the root zone)
For information about correcting this problem, click Help.
I was a bit surprised as I could ping all three PCs (host PC, DC1 and Win 10 PC) from each other and from a laptop. I could even RDP to all 3 PCs. I have rechecked all IP configurations on DC1 and Win 10 PC. I have assigned a static IP addresses to my PCs.
NameIP AddressSubnet MaskGateway
Hyper-V Host PC192.168.1.100255.255.255.0192.168.1.1
DC1.Contoso.com192.168.1.151255.255.255.0192.168.1.1
Win 10 PC192.168.1.201255.255.255.0192.168.1.1
 Router’s IP address: 192.168.1.1
To resolve this, I added manual DNS entries in my Win 10 PC. I assigned 192.168.1.151 and 192.168.1.1 as DNS servers in Win 10 PC. But I was not able to add client PC to domain. I had searched for the help on Internet but almost all the pages suggested, assigning correct IP address as my DNS server, which I had already done.
Hence I had to think something different to fix this issue. I decided to turn off IPv6 on my Win 10 Client PC's network adaptor (By default, this is enabled on all network adaptors). As soon as I had disabled IPv6, I was able to add Win 10 PC to my Domain controller.
Hope you find this article informative.