Solutions: Notebook downloads fast but desktop is slow

Published Jul. 4, 2014

I have a 4-month-old Notebook, Wi-Fi connected, Windows 8, running at 1.50 GHz, and a 2-week-old desktop, cable connected, Windows 8.1, running at 1.40 GHz. Facebook experience on the Notebook is lightning fast downloading pictures, info, etc. On the desktop it is pain­stakingly slow with intermittent messages, lasting for a few seconds, that connection to the website has failed but then is quickly reestablished. Takes maybe 30 seconds before scroll bar can be used. When activated once, it stops for perhaps another 30 seconds. Various sessions with tech supports have been unable to determine why this is happening.

This could be anything from bad hardware, corrupt operating system, virus/malware or browser add-ons. Start by running Internet Explorer in No add-on mode (press Windows Key + R key and enter iexplore.exe -extoff). Check and see if you have the same problems. If not, try eliminating add-ons until you find the offender. Next, try booting into Safe mode with networking. Again, check for the same issues. Check to see if you get better results using wireless rather than cable connection on the desktop to rule out a bad network adaptor. And of course, make sure you're getting clean scans from your antivirus.

I have a HP laptop ENVYdv7t Quad Edition computer, less than 2 years old, that I put in the shop for maintenance, which included installing Sophos security, upgrading from Windows 8 to Windows 8.1, removing bloatware and clutter and two viruses. Returning home, I discovered my laptop would no longer print from my Cannon MG 6120 printer as it did before on Windows 8.0.

First thing to do is download the latest MG 6120 printer drivers from Canon's support website ( There is a new version of the drivers for 8.1, and it probably wasn't part of the Windows 8.1 upgrade. You may also need to go through the installation/connection process to reestablish security connections to your router if you are using wireless access.

This week I was targeted for this Windows Service Center scam. I didn't fall victim but perhaps other new users will. The people performing the hoax sound remarkably professional and officious.

Let's make this a public service announcement for all then: You will never receive a legitimate unsolicited call offering to fix a "reported problem" with your PC. Repeat, never. These are all scams, 100 percent of the time. Don't spend any time talking to these people or give them even the slightest bits of information.

I am the new owner of an Epson Workforce 645 printer. Every time I print a document an extra page prints telling me what I have just done. Can you help me stop wasting paper?

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This is a feature of Microsoft Word that is normally turned off. It sounds as if you have this turned on. From within Microsoft Word, go to the Print … dialog (File, Print) and then click the Options button. Look in the "Include with document" section and uncheck the "Document properties" box. This should now stay turned off as the default.

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