Why can't my computer see my hard drive?

Episode 1332

Daniel from Riverside, CA

Daniel's PC says "boot device not found" when he turns it on. He checked all the cables and pulled the battery. That only worked once, though. Leo says that the battery is likely starting to fail and if that happens, it won't save the settings in the computer. Daniel should check the BIOS for the Enhanced System Configuration Data (ESCD) and reset it to default. Once that's done, reboot. After that, he may need to reinstall Windows.

How can I recover my laptop after it crashed during the Windows 10 upgrade?

Episode 1331

Jerry from Indio, CA
Windows 10 upgrade

Jerry tried to upgrade to Windows 10 and it got stuck and now he can't turn it on. Leo says that is a common problem and the Microsoft Store can fix it. Jerry didn't complete the upgrade before the free window expired, though. Leo recommends contacting Microsoft and explain that the got upgrade stuck and he needs to clear it and get the free upgrade.

Why won't my printer print anything from my computer after a paper jam?

Anne from El Cajon, CA

Episode 1325

After a bad paper jam, Anne's computer won't print anything to her printer. She can print a test page from the printer itself, though. She went to "Devices and Printers" and saw a warning that there were problems detected with the Synaptics HID device. Leo says that's actually her trackpad. Then she had a warning message that said that "Windows has stopped this device because it has reported problems." This could be related to the Synaptics failure. Leo thinks she may have some hardware failure on the motherboard.

Could my external backup drive be infected by a virus?

Keith from Mountain View, CA

Episode 1325

Keith got bit by a computer virus and it corrupted the Master Boot Record. Leo says that's pretty scary because even if he wiped his hard drive and started over, the virus may still be there. Can the virus infect an external USB drive? Leo says no, unless he made it bootable. The irony is, we don't use Master Boot Records anymore -- they're a holdover from a bygone era. He'll want to be sure all his apps are up to date. Browsers, readers, Windows, the works. He can keep his antivirus updated too. Keith should still remember his best defense is his own online behavior.

Why can't I print?

Ann from El Cajon, CA

Episode 1324

Ann tries to print something and it seems to be dead. It won't send the file to the printer. She gets an error message that Leo says is a trackpad error. But there's another error that says printer off line. Leo says that means it still thinks it's jammed. And windows has stopped the device because of continual problems. Leo says that could point to the trackpad failure. It's definitely a hardware issue. But Leo advises uninstalling the printer and then reboot the computer. Then try reinstalling it. See if that frees it up to print.

Prevent Windows From Rearranging Your Desktop Icons

For many users, the Windows desktop is a quick and easy way to get to frequently used files and applications. Sometimes, however, Windows will rearrange all of your icons on its own. This can happen if you plug in another display or play a game that changes the display resolution. In some cases, just logging out or restarting the PC could rearrange the icons. There are a couple of things you can do to prevent this from happening in the future, though.

How can I get a hard copy of Windows 10?

Episode 1322

Diane from Warren, OH
Windows 10

Diane wants to know how she can get a hard copy of the Windows 10 update. Leo says as long as she has already upgraded, it will be good forever. Then she is entitled to install it on her computer forever. There is a tool for it called the Media Creation Tool. This will enable her to create media and Leo recommends using a USB thumb drive. Then she can install it from the thumb drive. It's something everyone needs. Does that mean she can never put a new hard drive in? Leo says no. She can replace the hard drive, video card and maybe even the motherboard.

Why does the wallpaper change on my laptop whenever I change it on my desktop?

Stan from Colton, CA

Episode 1322

Stan says that every time he changes the wallpaper on his desktop, it changes on his laptop. Leo says that's a new feature because he logs into Windows using his Microsoft account. Most see it as a benefit for consistency, since it syncs. He can turn that off, though. Or he can select the rotating wallpaper option. The chatroom says he can go into settings and disable "settings sharing." He should go to Settings > Accounts > SyncYourSettings > Theme.