March 21, 2008
Dear CNET members,
Happy Good Friday folks! Well, this coming week is spring break for my children, which means no school for a whole week for them (lucky them). For many of you whom are parents like myself, my children's school scheduling pretty much dictates when it is time to take a vacation. Until now, I never realized how much time and energy my parents had to sacrifice to accommodate not only our school schedules, but also how much effort it takes to find us something to do when school is out. Currently my wife and I are scrambling to find a summer program in which to enroll my son. Therefore, a note of appreciation to all the parents who have gone through all of this in the past, you've survived and now it's our turn. Now let's tackle Reg's question on how to stop Windows from reassigning his external drive letters.
Well folks, this doesn't happen often, but this week's topic from Reg, while it did receive a decent amount of answers, I think some people may have misinterpreted his question as Windows reassigning his fixed drive letters, rather than his external removable drives like his USB flash drive and external hard drives. So when you read through the answers this week, some of the answers may not exactly apply.
Reg, I can see your frustration. I know that if you have desktop icons created for those removable drives, once you remove them and plug them back in, the desktop shortcuts will not access those drives again--because Windows naturally reassigned the drive letters to the next available drive letter. Unfortunately, many of our members' answers stated that it's something you cannot change in Windows--here is a simple explanation by our member alswilling and another more detailed answer by member bus. Other members suggested not unplugging those drives and they will remain assigned to the drive letters, but that makes the "removable" in removable drive pointless. However, I did come across a solution by our member techtype who suggests a program called, "USB Drive Letter Manager" (a note of warning that I have not tried or tested this software nor am I here to support it, so if you decide to try this software, purchase and use this software at your own risk.) However, if it works out please let us know. If any members have any other solutions to Reg's question, please let us know about it. The topic is open for discussion and I look forward to see what you have to offer. Have a fantastic weekend folks, thanks for all your efforts in helping one another out.
(Note: I will be taking a week off for some family vacation time, so there will be no community newsletter next week. However, the CNET forums are always open 24-7 for your perusal. Also, if you want to catch up on some of the previous community newsletters, we have all of them archived right here. Enjoy and see you all when I get back!)
Member Question of the Week
Greetings! Windows has many annoying "features" that we all
have to put up with. My main complaint is that regularly
Windows decides to make changes to settings, which then have
to be reset by the user. I'll give two examples. I
regularly connect USB external hard drives and USB flash
memory cards. Using Computer management's Disk Manager, I
will change the drive letter. My Toshiba hard drive is set
to (T:) and the Western Digital to (W:). My flash card is
set to (U:). These all have a desktop icon. I'll also set
the action required when plugged in to open a folder. Then
Windows decides to change the letter and prompts for what to
do, rather than automatically open a folder. Is there a
method to this madness, so that the assigned drive letter
stays assigned? Any detail explanation why this happens and
how I can fix this annoyance is appreciated.
The CNET community
Previous week's Q&AThe votes are in! Below is the answer voted most helpful by our community to last week's question.
Greetings, I am running Windows XP Pro SP2 on a custom
machine. My wife and I purchased this machine in 2004. We
haven't had many problems with it, but recently the computer
has developed a hum while running. I fear that something is
happening to the hard drive or power supply. Is there a way
to troubleshoot this ahead of time to avoid a costly repair
and potential loss of data? Please advise me on all possible
scenarios and solutions, so I can narrow down this cause.
Ah, the hum problem, a real hummer, so to speak.
You'll need to be a detective, but your initial sense of what may be wrong is very likely on target. First, before you turn on your computer, remove the side of your computer case. Then, when you turn on your computer put your head next to the open side and see if you can identify from whence the hum is coming...
CNET member: dlauber
Congratulations to the winner!
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Check out next week's question:
I need to upgrade my PC because I am using graphic-intensive programs including Adobe Photoshop, Dreamweaver, and Illustrator. I intend to stick with Windows XP (I have no interest in Vista at this point) and do not want to change to a Mac. Do I really need 3GB or 4GB of RAM, or is 2GB enough? Will an Intel dual-core processor work well enough, or do I really need the more expensive quad-core? I have never spent more than $1,000 on a PC but realize that my current requirements push me close to $1,500, including a wide-screen monitor. I have looked at the Dell Inspiron 530 and XPS 410. I welcome any and all suggestions. I do not want to spend for more than I need but I am having trouble figuring out the necessary essentials. Thanks so much for your suggestions!
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