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Troubleshooting windows xp last updated Thursday, January 13, 2005

Troubleshoot general
Don’t do 2 steps at the same time especially steps that are irreversible

like deleting media, files, programs or settings that you think are corrupt.
Wiping the hard drive and reinstalling windows or OSX is only an option

if you have all the installation disks not only the windows xp disk with the right service pack

updates and other patches but also the disks with drivers for all the hardware connected to the computer.

Plus the right version of the AVID or FCP software that you are running.
AVID says jan 2005 to not update windows XP to SP2 stay on SP1 for now.

My favorite keyboard shortcuts in windows XP:
F5 (refreshes the active window) same as: View/Refresh
Right-click (usually gives you just what you need)
Alt-F4 (close window)
Alt-TAB (moves between all open windows on the computer behaves almost the same as CMD-TAB on the Mac)
Right-click and Explore instead of double clicking folder after folder opening many unnececary windows.
SPACEBAR (in explorer to scroll down instead of using the mouse to scroll down, works the same on the MAC)

Basic troubleshoot routine windows xp, after each step check if the problem is fixed!
1. Unplug all devices except keyboard, mouse and primary hard drive

(open computer and disconnect extra IDE hard drives)
I worked on a computer once that had a defective IDE drive as one of the 4 hard drives,
this slowed the system down to a crawl (symptoms: slow start up (5 minutes) and very slow reaction to mouse clicks)
XP GOTCHA It seemed like spy ware or a virus but it was the operating system constantly

trying to read the defective drive) double clicking the defective drive gave the error

“this device is unreadable” 2 main reasons can be a corrupt file structure or directory,

in this case it was a 5 year old drive at the end of its life.
2. Go to START/run and type: “msconfig” and hit return
In the general tab choose “selective startup”
Uncheck all 4 boxes for
Process system.ini
Process win.ini
Load system services
Load startup Items
If the problem is fixed then you know that there is a problem/conflict with one of the drivers or background applications. Troubleshoot by turning things on group by group and device by device. Restarting each time.
If this doesn’t make a difference then turn it back to “Normal startup” (witch will check all boxes in all tabs)

3. Run virus check (like ) and antispyware. Like the free Microsoft Antispyware beta program at
A good way to check for spy ware by hand is to go to taskmanager (CTR-Alt-Delete)
And google the processes that you don’t recognize, if they are spy ware or ad ware turn them off. Please note that anything you do in taskmanager is only temporary. To permanently get rid of spy ware you have to run antispyware software because it is not possible to find and delete these files by hand using windows explorer (they are hidden)
Processes that I found on 1/10/05 that where spyware:
powerreg scheduler

4. Uninstall all unnecessary software.
Go to START/controlpanels/Add or remove progams
If you use the computer for editing or graphics try to keep it disconnected from the internet as much as possible. Anything that you install that you don’t use all the time slows down your computer.
Good practice is to have a “dirty” computer in the office for internet and only connect your workstation to get software updates or exchange files with a client.
Make sure to turn virusprotection and spyware protection, on, when you hook up to the internet and off when your working with editing software. Digital video software runs bad if your computer tries to do things in the background.
5 back up your drive
reformat and write all zeros
reinstall windows
moolwrote this about registry problems

Contact a WINDOWS XP TECH like 212-340-1979
or e-mail your problem to 646-733-8143
In answer to a problem with a computer where I found 198 pieces of spyware <> wrote:
it detected 198 adware or spyware or viruses...
when you delete things with microsoft and even norton... or other spyware software...
it will have back ups and not be completely deleted...
the OS will be slow... due to the back ups possibly in windows registry... and norton doesn't pick up these things... even with the newest definitions...
therefore.... you gotta.. reformat... and reinstall xp...
good luck
if you need help ... let me know...

To get better performance in windows xp:
1. START/controlpanels/system/advanced/performance
In “visual effects” tab choose “adjust for best performance”
In the “Advanced” tab make sure that “programs” is chosen for ”processor scheduling” and “memory performance”

Turn off automatic updates
Goto controlpanel/Automatic Updates
Because you don’t want your computer to change unless AVID or ADOBE or whoever your software is from says so. Operatingsystems and power software are very closely related and a change can make them incompatible.

Windows XP handy links:
Optimize tricks and good windows xp FAQ:

Services that you can disable
Go to START/run/services.msc
these are the same as the processes in taskmanager (CTR-Alt-Delete)

Everything you always wanted to know about devicemanager

Finding drivers:
or go to windows update and do custom install

Weird problem with device manager:
You click on device manager in START/controlpanels/system/hardware
And nothing shows up??
No devices, no data nada
Go to START/run/services.msc
Right-Click on “plug and play” and make it starts up automatic and make sure that it runs.
You can also start “plug and play” in START/run and type: “msconfig”
In the “services” tab check the plug and play box.
Plug and play is a service that makes it possible to see your hardware in device manager and without it most of your hardware connected to your motherboard like the soundcard won’t work (devices greyed out in the tabs)

What is an unhandled access violation?

This is a generic error message on XP systems. Kind of like "Unmapped Memory Exception" on Macs. Doesn't really tell you what's wrong, just that something is wrong.

Avid recommends that you delete your settings if you get this error a lot. But that's Avid's generic answer to many problems. Not unlike MIS asking you to re-boot...

If that doesn't help, let me give MY generic troubleshooting tips. Shut down the Avid and re-seat every board. Check and tighten your cables (Meridien and SCSI). Run SCANDISK on your Avid drive. Uninstall your Avid SW. Re-install. If this happens more often in one project than in others, create a new project and bring in your old bins into the new project. And make sure you are signed in with Administrator priviledges, especially when using AudioSuite plug-ins.
Gregory T. Baker
Colorado Creative Multimedia LLC.

Errors left over that I didn’t figure out:
“Could not start universal plug and play device host service
Error 1068 the dependency service or group failed to start”
Please e-mail me if you know the answer.

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