Net Xpress: Help offered for several elementary Windows tasks

October 27, 2003|SHEILA J. CLARK

Today I offer to you a mini-set of "back to the basics" of computing. A reader wrote in asking how to get his computer, which runs on Windows 98, to boot using a startup disk, and also asking how to get into Safe Mode. Since the reader's computer was having trouble booting, I suggested that he run the System File Checker utility to verify the condition of his system files. Read on for how-tos on all of these tasks.

How to boot into Safe Mode

1. Either repeatedly tap or hold down your F8 key as your computer is booting. This should get you into the Windows 98 Startup Menu.

2. At the Startup Menu, choose option three by pressing the number 3 key and then press enter.

While in Safe Mode, run the System File Checker (SFC) utility that lets you restore damaged or corrupt Windows system files. To do so, follow these steps:


1. Click Start and then select Run.

2. Type in SFC in the Run window and click on the OK button.

3. Make sure that Scan for Altered Files is selected and then click on the Start button at the bottom of the SFC window. If a corrupted file is found, have it restored by following the onscreen directions. You may be asked for your Windows 98 CD, so be sure to have it handy.

How to get out of Safe Mode

1. Simply shutdown like you would normally by clicking on Start.

2. On the shutdown menu select reboot instead of shutdown.

How to start Windows from a command line

If you wish to start Windows from a command line, type win at the command prompt (c:). Your system should then start to boot into Windows.

Net buzzz

* The U.S. Senate has approved the anti-spam bill that will outlaw unsolicited spam and a "do not spam" registry will be set up for those who do not wish to receive unwanted commercial e-mails. Learn more at

* Verisign, a leading Internet and telecommunications infrastructure provider, is selling the business unit of Network Solutions, their domain name registration division, to Pivotal Private Equity. Read more at

* AOL is planning to launch a new discount Internet service under their Netscape brand at the beginning of 2004. This decision comes as more AOL subscribers are opting for broadband service while moving away from the traditional dial-up connections. The Netscape service will be another trimmed-down version of the AOL service similar to the discounted WalMart Connect service that AOL runs through its Compuserve service. The new Netscape service will cost $9.95 per month. Read more at

* Red Hat has released Red Hat Enterprise Version 3, its newest Linux offering. Read more at

* Microsoft has decided to change the security patch distribution to monthly release instead of weekly releases to help unburden IT staff. Learn more at In other Microsoft news, the company has released its latest Office Suite, Office 2003. Read more at

* Apple's latest operating system, MacOS X version 10.3, codenamed Panther, was released last Friday. Read more at In other Apple news, the company has sliced the prices on its eMac computers. Learn more at and 3669991.

E-mail me at; fax me at (859) 236-9566; or write me snail-mail at The Advocate-Messenger, P.O. Box 149, Danville, KY 40423-0149.

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