Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Solutions: When a laptop won't shut down

I have an Acer Aspire laptop running Windows 7 Home edition. First, it will not shut down. If you click "Shut down," it closes and restarts. The only way to shut it down is to remove the battery. The settings on the control panel appear to be correct. The other issue is the finger mouse pad works when it first boots up, but as soon as an application is started, the finger mouse pad is disabled.

This is consistent with what happens when a device driver fails to shut down properly and crashes during shutdown. You may be able to get a clue by checking the Windows System logs using the Event Viewer (click Start, type Event Viewer and click the link at the top). Make sure you have the latest Windows updates as well as Acer device-specific updates (check its support forum). If you are still under warranty, have them help you solve it.

I was told that if I do not accept Microsoft Windows 7 that one day they will block my Windows XP, so I cannot get on the Internet. Fact or fiction?

Fiction. What you're probably hearing is the planned "end of support" lifecycle. From Microsoft's website: "This refers to the date when Microsoft no longer provides automatic fixes, updates, or online technical assistance. This is the time to make sure you have the latest available service pack installed." For Windows XP that's April 8, 2014. It won't affect Internet connections.

I created some CDs on Windows 98. I now have Windows XP and my CDs are "read only." I cannot delete the documents or make changes.

If they're CDs, they are not rewritable. Copy them to your drive, make changes and write them to a new CD/DVD if needed. CDs 15 years old may no longer be reliable.

My computer email is Windows Live Mail and Windows 7 64 Bit is my operating system. I get many junk emails. Some land in my inbox even though I previously labeled them on the blocked senders list. My second computer uses Windows XP and Outlook Express and it does not receive anywhere near the junk mail messages and has no junk email folder. I am using Microsoft Security Essentials on both computers. It appears that Windows XP does a much better job of filtering junk mail than my Windows 7 system. Is this so or am I missing something?

I'm sure Windows Live Mail and Outlook Express are using different filtering methodologies. It's interesting that Outlook Express seems to be doing a better job as I'm sure it doesn't receive the same amount of attention as Windows Live Mail. Make sure you have the filtering set properly in Live Mail. Click the little "Live Mail" image in the upper left corner, click Options, then Safety Options and then the Options tab. Make sure the level is set to High. Junk email filters are almost always updated at every Windows Update, so make sure your PC is set to automatically download the latest updates (Control Panel \ System and Security \ Windows Update).

Send questions to or Personal Tech, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg, FL 33731. Questions are answered only in this column.

Solutions: When a laptop won't shut down 08/12/12 [Last modified: Sunday, August 12, 2012 9:27pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Lightning takes defenseman Cal Foote with top pick in draft

    Lightning Strikes

    CHICAGO — Cal Foote said he was so young when his father, Adam, played in the NHL, he didn't remember their hug in the Avalanche's dressing room during the 2001 Stanley Cup celebration.

    Head shot of Times staffer Joe Smith. Joe Smith is the Tampa Bay Lightning beat writer for the sports department. Staffer mug shot taken in Times studio on Tuesday (06/20/17).
  2. Lightning journal: Plans set for 25th anniversary celebration

    Lightning Strikes

    CHICAGO — The Lightning revealed some of its plans for its 25th anniversary season Friday, including a ceremony to honor the 2004 Stanley Cup team.

    PHILADELPHIA, PA - JUNE 27:  Anthony DeAngelo of the Tampa Bay Lightning poses for a portrait during the 2014 NHL Draft at the Wells Fargo Center on June 27, 2014 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images)
  3. Lightning picks defenseman Cal Foote


    Cal Foote is the son of former Avs defenseman Adam Foote.
  4. Kids today: They don't work summer jobs the way they used to


    WASHINGTON — It was at Oregon's Timberline Lodge, later known as a setting in the horror movie The Shining, where Patrick Doyle earned his first real paycheck.

    Teens Ben Testa, from left, Hannah Waring and Abby McDonough, and Wegmeyer Farms owner Tyler Wegmeyer walk the strawberry rows at the Hamilton, Va., farm in late May.
  5. Jeb Bush back in the hunt for the Marlins, now opposing Derek Jeter


    Associated Press:

    Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush has switched sides in pursuit of the Miami Marlins, and he’s trying to beat out former teammate Derek Jeter.