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•   Starting Over
   How to clean, reformat
   and reload your
   computer's hard drive.
•   Modem Problems
   How to detect and
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   modem problems.
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   your computer.
•   Make A Boot Disk
   How to make an
   emergency boot disk.
•   Virus Protection
   How to keep your
   computer bug free.
•   Removing Files
   How to safely remove
   files & programs from
   your hard drive.
•   Installing Software
   How to install new
   programs in
   your computer.
•   Don't Install This
   A few things that
   probably shouldn't be
   installed in your
   computer.
•   Re-Formating
   How to properly reformat
   your hard drive.
•   Under The Hood
   How to safely work inside
   your computer.
•   Re-Associate Files
   Re-associate an
   "Open-With" to a
   file type.
•   Using A Scanner
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   what you want.
•   Computer Crashes
   Why some computers
   crash, hang or freeze.
•   How To Save Files
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   your hard drive.
•   Copy & Paste
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   most powerful tool
   in Windows.

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Removing Files & Programs
From Your Hard Drive


Please read the disclaimer at the end of this page, before preforming this procedure.

For optimum performance your computer should have no less then 10% free space on the hard drive. That is, if you have a 1-gigabyte hard drive, you should try to maintain a minimum of 100 megabytes of free space on that drive, 150 to 200 megabytes is even better. If you have a 10-gigabyte drive you should have no less then 1 gigabyte of free space on the drive, etc… If you are running Windows 95/98, you should never have less then 75 megabytes of free space, regardless of your hard drive size.

Deleting files can cause lots of problems. Some programs install parts of themselves into the operating system. If later, the subdirectory that a program is contained in is deleted, when the computer is restarted it may complain that a file or driver is no longer available, and not finish booting.

Some programs include an "Uninstaller" which will safely remove the program from your hard drive. Check to see if the program you want to remove from your computer has an uninstaller, and use it to remove the program from your computer.

Many programs written for Windows 95/98 are 32 bit programs, and can be uninstalled from the "Add/Remove Programs" icon in the control panel. To do this: double click your "My Computer" icon, then double click the "Control Panel" icon, then double click the "Add/Remove Programs" icon. If the program is listed in the window, click once on it then click the "Add/Remove" button, this will safely remove the program from your computer.

If all else fails you may need to manually remove the program from your hard drive. Please be very careful performing the following steps. Mistakes during the following steps can turn a running computer into a very expensive repair problem.

Most third party programs are installed in their own subdirectory or "Folder"

A sure-fire way to insure that a program can be deleted is to hide it from Windows before you actually delete it.

What we are going to do here is rename the subdirectory "Folder" that contains the program, then restart the computer and check ALL the other programs. If everything works ok we can delete the renamed subdirectory "Folder".

First we need to know what subdirectory or folder contains the program that we want to delete. In Windows 95/98 do this by right clicking the icon that runs the program and click on properties, then on the Short cut tab. In Windows 3.x click once on the program's icon then click on "File" and properties in the upper left of program manager.

Once we know the name of the subdirectory that contains the program, we will use Explorer in Win 95/98 or File Manager in Win 3.x to rename the subdirectory, I,e, If your program was in a subdirectory like C:\PROGRAM rename it to C:\PROGRAM.OLD

Now close out Windows and restart your computer. If it starts without problems, check all other programs to insure that a component in the old program is not shared with any other programs. If all is well you can delete the C:\PROGRAM.OLD subdirectory or Folder and the icon for that program. If all is not well, you will need to return the subdirectory's name to the original and restart the computer.

Please note DO NOT rename C:\WINDOWS or any subdirectories under it, or C:\DOS, C:\My Documents, C:\Program Files, or C:\Recycled. Doing so may cause your computer to become a doorstop!

Do only one subdirectory at a time, then restart and test. If you are not comfortable moving around in your hard disk with Explorer or File Manager don't do the above deletions. Take your computer to an expert "Not your friend that has had a computer two weeks longer than you have" but a real expert. I hope this helps. Remember "When in doubt don't do it!"

After you have deleted some programs or files your hard drive may become fragmented. It is a good idea to run "Scandisk" then "Defrag" in that order. Running defrag will reorder the files on your hard drive, and make your computer more efficient.





Use the above procedure at your own risk!
J.R. has been building and repairing computers for over 25 years, and has personally used the above procedure on thousands of computers. Each computer is different and the competence of the user can vary.   J.R. Whipple, in no way warrants the above procedure, nor can he be held responsible for any problems, loss of data, loss of business, or any other damages caused by the application of the above procedure. If you are not comfortable with the above procedure, DON'T DO IT. If you need help please Contact Us before attempting the above procedure.

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