Computer or WIN 98 problem???

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by GarPA, Nov 29, 2003.

  1. GarPA

    GarPA LawnSite Silver Member
    from PA
    Posts: 2,585

    Maybe one of you techy gurus can help me with this. I have an HP Pavillion m70 'desktop...I think its about 4 years old...has Win98 on it. My wife and I are ready to throw it out the front are the problems:

    1. in the middle of anything, about a dozen times a week it throws us out of the app we're working on
    2. locks up for no apprarent reason...when trying alt/cntl/del to unlock it, we sometimes get the message "ms query not responding"
    3. somtimes it shuts off completely...cant even turn it on at all...have to unplug it at the wall. THen it shuts off after a few seconds for about 6 times and then finally it will boot up

    One day I was listening to that woman on the radio who has a national radio show on computers...I think he name is Kim Kommando?? I was only half listening but I think I heard her talking about some problem with WIN98 that is like the problem I've been having. I do install the windows on-lne updates occasionally but I dont know if this problem is addressed in those updates.

    Much appreciated if you could shed some light on this problem as we're ready to buy a new computer because of it...but...I'd rather not since all we need the puter for is simple business stuff and the internet....thanks for your help
  2. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,501


    I had almost exactly the same problem just about a year would lock up, shut down, etc. Took it to someone to see what was up. Had over 1200 infected files. McAfee or Norton, etc. wasn't working or was too old and I didn't realize this. Ok, can it be fixed. They said yes. Charged me like $85 to clean them up or get rid of. Viruses did a a number on QuickBooks and I had to uninstall completely and then upgrade.

    All was fine for about a week when the s*** hit the fan again. Took back computer and told me that some of the files were too hevily damaged and they couldn't tell exactly which ones. BTW, it was about a 3 or 4 year old Compaq that found its eventual resting place in a dumpster and I moved over to a Dell.

    Hope you have better luck...
  3. Wells

    Wells LawnSite Member
    from SLC UT
    Posts: 0


    The issue your having with your PC could be a number of things
    from a virus to conflicting drivers to corrupted files.

    A lot of time drivers and viruses are your main problems, everytime you install a new program new drivers are installed and many programs share the same drivers. When you uninstall older programs it uninstalls the drivers and some of the drivers that it shares with other programs get uninstalled. (you will typically get a warning before it unistalls a shared driver)

    Drivers also can conflict with each other causing problems with the machine. Is there something you remember installing recently before your machine started acting up? If there is you may try uninstalling that program.

    Also you may notice that after uninstalling a program that certain pieces of it may still reside on your machine. Over time your machine will start to build up with these pieces of old programs causing it slow down and not perform as it did when it was new.

    There are prgrams out there that will go out and look for dead links or pieces of files that no longer exist and remove them for you. When I was running Win 98 I bought a program called "Ultra Win Cleaner". It did a great job of removing dead links.

    Rodfather also had good advice about keeping your virus software up to date. I'm running Nortons antivirus and it updates itself weekly just before it scans my machine for infections, repairs any damage and isolates any viruses.

    You may also consider upgrading your machine to 2000 or XP. The newer operating systems have the capability to save a restore point. So when your machine starts acting up you can restore it to a point in time when it was running better.

    You may also want to consider a firewall, Nortons has a good firewall protector that keep the outside world from getting onto your computer. I keep all of my business records on my pc (quickbooks, estimates, etc.) and the last thing I want is for someone to get on my computer and start accessing my records. Most people are under the impression that a firewall is only for big businesses but the fact is that anyone can have a firewall.

    GarPA your doing well by going to Microsofts update center and installing the operating system updates. Keep installing the updates. Microsoft finds glitches in vulnerabilities in their software all the time and they fix these problems and offer you the fix in form of the updates.

    To keep my computer running optimal I generally rebuild it no less that once a year. I strip it down to bare bones, reformate the hard drive and reinstall all the programs. It may just be me, but it seems like it never runs better than when it has just been rebuilt.

    Hope this helps
  4. EagleLandscape

    EagleLandscape LawnSite Platinum Member
    Male, from Garland, Texas
    Posts: 4,347

    man, it could be anything. physical problems or software problems, or both. defrag and scandisk. get the latest updates for your virus definitions, and make sure you have all the latest drivers. the easiest thing would be just back up all your stuff, format and load the operating system. when stuff gets hairy over here, it takes about 3 hours to do the whole thing. its quicker than guessing what could be wrong,.
  5. GarPA

    GarPA LawnSite Silver Member
    from PA
    Posts: 2,585

    thanks Wells for all the good info...yes I'm running fact I just renewed it a couple months ago and I take all the weekly/monthly updates. I love computers for what they can do, but I have no time, desire, or ability to go messing with the operating system. I was just hoping that one of you might know of a patch like Kim Kommando was talking about on the radio. I do remember her saying that win 98 is really squirrly and much of it was fixed in win 2000. thanks again for the info
  6. ElephantNest

    ElephantNest LawnSite Bronze Member
    from La.
    Posts: 1,878

    Ad-Aware. Get that and run it. It will delete any spyware. among other places
  7. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Posts: 4,900

    12 ga. slug right through the heart of the sob. bury it deep after you kick it a few times and go buy a new one. Just had to put mine to rest a couple weeks ago. It was the same thing Rodfather went trough also. Just make sure you take all your frustrations out on the one you have now so when the new one acts up you don't kick the crap out of it right away!!!!!!!

  8. Groundcover Solutions

    Groundcover Solutions LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,254

    If you have all of your programs on disk and can back up any information that you need onto disk i would reformat the hard drive. It is not a hard process but you will lose everything you have on the computer so you want to make sure that you have all of the info off of it that you need. That should take care of any software problems that you may be having. But i would also recommend if you can afford it to upgrade to a new computer running xp. This system is much essayer to use and work with and your 98 machine is getting pretty old and out of date. You may soon run into problems trying to upgrade or buy new software because you are still running only 98. Just my 2 cents!
  9. gene gls

    gene gls LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,213

    I was in the same boat as you with Win 98.My biggest problem was finding some one that was reliable to work on my system.A friend from the past started his own business, building and repairing computers. He switched me over to Windows XP home edition and upgraded some of my system. Its like night and day for opperation, hasn't skipped a beat in 2 months. He suggested that I plan on upgrading some of my system every year to keep up to speed.

  10. EagleLandscape

    EagleLandscape LawnSite Platinum Member
    Male, from Garland, Texas
    Posts: 4,347

    if you guys want any computers for your business, i build em for some extra pocket cash in my spare time.

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