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  • bbearren

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    Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 4,054 total)
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    • in reply to: Terabyte update: The hard-drive price advantage #2268412
      bbearren
      AskWoody MVP

      Any PC will see a dramatic performance improvement if you simply re-install the OS.

      For me, that’s in the same category as “Your SSD is gonna die!”  Partitioning, multiple drives and automated regular routine maintenance will prevent any performance falloff in the first.

      I’ve upgraded/updated several systems over the years, but never with a clean install (except XP to Windows 7—no direct upgrade path).  I never re-install to improve performance, because I don’t have a performance drop-off.  Task Scheduler keeps my systems lean and clean in the wee hours while I’m sleeping.

      Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
      "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
      "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

      in reply to: Terabyte update: The hard-drive price advantage #2268303
      bbearren
      AskWoody MVP

      I’m concerned about SSD devices that have data written to them and then are unplugged and placed on a shelf in an archival capacity.

      Archival Storage is not the intended use of SSD’s.  Nevertheless, I have a Kingston SSD Now 240GB that’s been sitting in a box on a shelf for about four years.  It’s there because I replaced it with a larger capacity SSD.  I just unplugged it and removed it.  I loaded the replacement with drive images.

      After reading this thread, I got that SSD off the shelf and plugged it into the drive dock on my NAS.  Both partitions are intact, all the data is still there.  I double-clicked a few random files, and they opened immediately.

      I may put it to use in a future build, and I have no qualms about doing so.  It’s fine.

      Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
      "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
      "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

      2 users thanked author for this post.
      in reply to: Windows 10 2004 has left the barn #2268290
      bbearren
      AskWoody MVP

      From Susan’s blog post, “Bottom line: Protecting your PC from problematic updates is no different from fending off other threats and failures. Always have a current and thorough system backup!

      “… is no different …”.  Exactly.  Nothing beats a current and thorough system backup (drive imaging is my method of choice) for getting out of Windows/PC/laptop problems of any kind.  One can literally turn back the clock.

      Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
      "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
      "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

      3 users thanked author for this post.
      in reply to: POP3 and IMAP comparison for Email downloading #2268270
      bbearren
      AskWoody MVP

      I have stayed with POP3 since the beginning with Outlook Express, and for a simple reason.

      I have three email accounts that I use with Outlook 365 (now Microsoft 365) and all three have unlimited server storage for my email.  One account is my own website hosting company.

      All the accounts are setup to leave email on the server.  That amounts to free cloud storage/backup for my email.  I could uninstall, then reinstall Microsoft 365 and years worth of email would download to the new Outlook setup with the same accounts.

      I have multiple folders in my Outlook email, and a single folder on my email servers.  Outlook sorts incoming email to the appropriate folder using a set of rules.  With IMAP I would have to setup those folders on the server.  I’d rather keep that on my end.

      Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
      "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
      "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

      in reply to: Terabyte update: The hard-drive price advantage #2268268
      bbearren
      AskWoody MVP

      I’ve seen reports that SSDs can lose data in as little as 7 days without power.

      “If you’re in a panic because the Internet told you that your shiny new SSD may lose data in “just a few days” when stored in a hot room, take a chill pill—it’s apparently all a huge misunderstanding.”

      Read the linked article.

      Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
      "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
      "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

      1 user thanked author for this post.
      in reply to: Open questions about the Win10 version 2004 upgrade #2267488
      bbearren
      AskWoody MVP

      It hasn’t been pushed to my NAS yet, but my Update & Security screen looks normal.  My NAS has the same motherboard/CPU combo as my desktop (which I updated using the MCT-USB), so I’m sure it’s update-ready, it just hasn’t hit the queue for the update release yet.

      I’ll just wait, which is my usual procedure for my NAS and laptop.  My laptop already got the push and has the update installed.

      Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
      "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
      "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

      in reply to: Win10 version 2004 is here but… surprise! #2267045
      bbearren
      AskWoody MVP

      I would add to that… even if you DO know about Windows’ recovery tools, don’t install this thing until it’s rock solid. There’s very, very little benefit to installing it. And plenty of downside.

      @RG and others here at AskWoody have already installed 2004, just as I have.  There is NO recovery tool that can outperform a drive image.  Correspondingly, having a current drive image equates to NO downside to installing this update outside a work environment.  As a matter of what I consider best practices, I install every Windows update offered to my machines, and have been for a couple of decades, now.  I have yet to encounter a real issue with any of them.

      I see 2004 as just another Windows update, and I treat it as such.  With updates, I go after them with my desktop, and wait for the push to my laptop and NAS.  You, Susan and everyone else who adds a blog post here at AskWoody frequently say, “Backup first”.  The introduction to my website is, “For experienced users and those users who wish to become more experienced, I offer some self-help ideas here on this site for preventive maintenance, troubleshooting techniques and corrective measures to employ when Windows is misbehaving.

      My #1 suggestion, my top recommendation for success as a Windows user, is to commit to an established regimen of regular drive imaging.”  I follow my own advice.  I always have a current set of drive images.  In this post in this thread, I give some detail to what I encountered on the B side of my dual boot due to a corrupted Administrators group user account, and what I did to correct it.  Restoring my drive images was part of the corrective process, and exposed the existence of that corrupted profile.  I know how to fix those.

      I have no issues with either side of my dual boot now.  The only problem I’ve detected with 2004 is that it has resurrected those “Special Folders” that I had expunged from Windows and added even more registry entries regarding them.  Those I will ferret out and once again expunge the “Special Folders”, I’ll be good to go, I’ll continue to follow my own advice, and continue to report my results here, until I get voted off the island.

      Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
      "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
      "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

      2 users thanked author for this post.
      in reply to: Win10 version 2004 is here but… surprise! #2266904
      bbearren
      AskWoody MVP

      My Dell Latitude E5420 (circa early 2011) got the push today, I just RDP’d into it and clicked download and install.  I’ll see how that goes.

      Nothing on my NAS yet.  It has the same motherboard/CPU as my desktop, so I don’t anticipate any difficulties.  It’s a standard installation of Windows 10 upgraded over Windows 7 Pro.

      Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
      "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
      "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

      in reply to: Win10 version 2004 is here but… surprise! #2266860
      bbearren
      AskWoody MVP

      Considering the way that the standard user accounts were behaving normally and briskly, I dug into the registry, did some editing and also realized that my Admin account was corrupted.

      Next I enabled the default Administrator account, signed into it, and deleted the corrupted Admin account.  I rebooted, signed back into the Administrator account and created a new Admin account, making it a member of the Administrators group, which is where I am now, typing this.

      After deleting/creating the Admin account and signing back into it, I disabled the default Administrator account.  I’ve done a few reboots from A to B in my dual boot, and everything is copacetic once again.  I’m not sure when or how the Admin account got corrupted, I rarely sign into that account other than when required by limitations like updating from 1909 to 2004.

      The whodoos with the first attempt at the online update may have contributed to the corruption, but all is well once more.

      Once again, there is simply no substitute for having a recent drive image at the ready.  Since the second attempt was successful but exceedingly drawn out, the Admin profile was likely already corrupt, and not the fault of the update; the update just brought it to light.

      It’s all good now, though, and everything is running fine.

      Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
      "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
      "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

      in reply to: Win10 version 2004 is here but… surprise! #2266711
      bbearren
      AskWoody MVP

      When I was satisfied with the A side of my dual boot, I rebooted over to the B side.  The configuration of that installation is well outside a Microsoft supported installation.  I was anticipating some hiccups there, and I was not disappointed.

      It choked on the Windows Update route (it was queued up ready for download).  It took longer, and couldn’t quite get there.  I did get to a sign in screen, had the correct background but a generic avatar.  Getting things ready took a looooooooong time.  It kicked StartIsBack++ (the A side didn’t even notice), I reinstalled that and tried a reboot.  It got worse from there.  I finally decided to go the MCT-USB route and restored my drive images for 1909.

      Updating through the USB worked, but took about four times as long as the A side.  The Admin account takes about 20 minutes to load.  The two standard user accounts are quite snappy.  All settings are in place, only StartIsBack++ needed attention.  Puzzling through the long signin time for the the Admin account is gonna give me something to do for a while.

      The most interesting part of that adventure is that Windows 7/8/8.1 would not have let me keep my apps and settings.  All three would have only allowed a clean install.

      Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
      "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
      "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

      in reply to: Win10 version 2004 is here but… surprise! #2266640
      bbearren
      AskWoody MVP

      Got the Windows Recovery Environment updated, then upgraded that to TBWinRE, and all of that went quite smoothly.

      Then I went to All settings > Update & Security > Recovery > Advanced startup and clicked the Restart now button.  The system rebooted into the Windows Recovery Environment with Image for Windows front and center, as well as the usual recovery options.

      All systems nominal, no hiccups, no issues.

      Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
      "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
      "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

      1 user thanked author for this post.
      in reply to: Win10 version 2004 is here but… surprise! #2266615
      bbearren
      AskWoody MVP

      Now running Windows 10 Pro Version 2004 (OS Build 19041.264). Used the MCT to create USB installation media, signed in as a member of the Administrators group and ran Setup.exe from there. Those aggravating Special Folders reappeared, so I used Process Hacker to run regedit as trusted installer and imported my .reg file that strips them from the registry, then deleted the empty folders for User Profiles. File Explorer is clean once more, and its Search box works fine; one click places the cursor in the text box. It only found one *.tmp file, but I had run a thorough cleanup before the update.

      I used extended cleanmgr to get rid of Windows.old and the other installation detritous. My next move wiill be to update WinRE, then update that to TBWinRE.

      Everything is running nominal, no hiccups, no issues.  As for the list in the OP, I don’t have anything in my system that might be affected.

      Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
      "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
      "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

      • This reply was modified 5 days, 18 hours ago by bbearren. Reason: added link
      bbearren
      AskWoody MVP

      I don’t want to de-rail this thread, but I’d like to respond to @Elly.

      I have two DIY boxes.  My desktop, a mini-tower (the specs are in a link in my signature) and my NAS, a mid-tower.  Both have the same Motherboard/CPU combination, which is low to mid-level spec, and all parts were bought on sale, and with the exception of HDD’s/SSD’s, after they were out of production.  My laptop is a Dell Latitude E5420 from 2011, also bought on sale directly from Dell with mid-level specs.  I don’t have any high-end hardware at all.

      I’ve always stayed behind the curve on hardware, always buying out-of=production parts (except for PSU and UPS) and going for mid-level performance rankings.  The only item I ever bought that was not on sale or out=of-production was a Toshiba SSD from Office Depot for my laptop to replace a failing spinner, because I needed it for work the next day.  And yes, I simply restored a complete drive image after I installed the SSD to get right back to where I was before the spinner started failing.

      In my more than two decades of living in the Windows world, I’ve had a few hardware failures (which are always when, not if), including a handful of HDD failures, one of which was so deadly the PC would not even power on, much less post.  After I replaced that HDD, I restored a full drive image and was right back to where I had been before the failure.

      I am continually getting elbow deep into Windows innards, including the registry, and so I always have recent drive images to pull me back out of the ashes and restore my working system.  I look at Windows Update in exactly the same way, because that’s what Windows Update is doing, getting elbow deep into Windows innards including the registry, and I’m always prepared with a recent drive image to pull me back to a working system should the need arise.

      There are also some things that I don’t do.  I don’t use TSR helper apps to keep my software updated or my drivers updated.  The only programs I use are productivity programs, like Office, video editing software, audio editing software and the like, and a couple of power tools for my piddlin’.  I don’t use CCleaner or any other such apps.

      I make extensive use of Task Scheduler to perform all my routine maintenance using Windows own tools for the most part.  I use Image for Windows run through Task Scheduler to keep my drive images current.

      My systems are quite lean, as it were, and I have used various methods that I’ve developed over the years to keep Windows responsive, efficient and stable.  Windows 10 has proven to me to be the most stable, reliable and secure version yet.

      After a house fire in 2011 zorched my two PC’s, I ordered a very low-end Dell Inspiron D580 (discounted 20%) because I didn’t have time to build a new box.  At the same time, I ordered a 1TB HDD (on sale through Amazon).  I installed that HDD in the D580, restored my pre-fire drive images to it, and started dual booting OEM Windows 7 Home (that the Dell shipped with and which I stripped of all bloatware) and Retail Windows 7 Ultimate.  The only thing I lost was time.

      In my years I’ve learned three basic, powerful lessons in keeping Windows reliable, responsive and efficient.  Keep it lean, keep it fully updated, make frequent drive images.

      I contend that I don’t have problems with Windows Update because of the way I run Windows lean and fully updated.  My insurance policy is frequent drive imaging.  I’ve restored many a drive image because of my own tinkerin’, but not because of a failed Windows Update.

      Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
      "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
      "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

      bbearren
      AskWoody MVP

      And how do you return it to its un-pooched state in six minutes- never heard of restoring from a disc image that fast before

      I use TeraByte Image for Windows, my OS partition is only 100GB.  I dual boot, and restarting to the B side takes ~50 seconds, opening Image for Windows and restoring my OS image takes under 5 minutes.  Fairly straight forward.

      I could also go to All settings > Update & Security > Recovery > Advanced startup and boot into TBWinRE (for me, it’s on a separate partition) and run Image for Windows > Restore from there.  For those who don’t dual boot, Image for Windows has a script (TBWinRE.cmd) as well as a tutorial that are installed along with Image for Windows.  It’s no more  difficult than opening an elevated Command Prompt, typing the name of the script, Enter, and follow a couple of prompts.

      All in all, not a big deal.  For me, getting un-pooched is pretty much six minutes either way.

      Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
      "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
      "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

      • This reply was modified 6 days, 21 hours ago by bbearren.
      bbearren
      AskWoody MVP

      There’s exactly zero reason for a “normal” Windows user to install Win10 2004 before we’ve had a chance to see and dissect the bugs – and either come up with workarounds, or wait for Microsoft to fix them.

      I must disagree.  Not everyone here at AskWoody fits such a category.  I am a two decades+ experienced “normal” Windows user (not an IT Pro; using Windows for my own purposes) who has zero reason to wait for anyone to tell me when it’s safe for me to install an update.  It only takes a recent drive image (my oldest is from 2:00AM Sunday) to eliminate any cause for concern in updating Windows.

      I’ll update as soon as the update is made available, and report any issues here.  If there are no issues, I’ll report that as well.

      Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
      "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
      "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

    Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 4,054 total)