Archive for October, 2014

How to Disable UAC in Windows 8 and 10

October 31st, 2014 by Admin

UAC (User Access Control) is a security feature introduced since Windows Vista, which helps prevent unauthorized changes to your computer. When you try to install a program or make changes to Windows settings, the UAC prompt will show up asking for your approval, even though you are already logged on as an administrator.


If the changes are not approved by the administrator, they are not executed and Windows remains unchanged. It is as if nothing happened. However, most of the windows users simply keep it disabled as you have to bear the pop-up and press Yes every time you run an application. Here’s how to disable UAC in Windows 8 and 10.

How to Disable UAC in Windows 8 and 10?

  1. Press the Windows key + X to open the power user menu, and then select Control Panel from the list.


  2. Once Control Panel is launched, type UAC in the search box in the upper right corner of the window. Click Change User Account Control settings in the search results.


  3. Use the vertical slider to select the desired UAC security level. To turn off UAC entirely, drag the slider down to Never notify, and click OK.


    You need to reboot the computer before it takes effect.

How to Boot Windows 8 in Safe Mode If Your PC Won’t Start

October 30th, 2014 by Admin

In my previous post I’ve covered the procedure to access the Safe Mode from Windows 8 login screen. But that method won’t work in case your computer is crashed or unable to start. Since Windows 8, the boot process is now so fast that it’s also impossible to access the Safe Mode by pressing the traditional F8 key. So here I’m going to explain another method to boot Windows 8 in Safe Mode if your computer won’t start.

How to Boot Windows 8 in Safe Mode with A Recovery Drive?

  1. Boot your problematic computer from Windows 8 recovery drive. If you don’t have a recovery drive, you can create one on another Windows 8 PC which you can access, by following this guide: How to Create a Recovery Drive in Windows 8.
  2. After your computer boots from the recovery drive and you’re presented with the Choose your keyboard layout screen, choose the keyboard layout appropriate for your device. On the next screen, click Troubleshoot.

  3. When you see the Troubleshoot screen, click Advanced options.

  4. On the Advanced options screen, click Startup settings.

  5. On the next screen, click Restart.

  6. Once the PC has restarted, you will be given the option to boot to Safe Mode by pressing F4.

How to Track User Logon Activity with Logon Auditing

October 29th, 2014 by Admin

Ever wonder how to keep a track of who logged into your computer and when they log in? Or want to find out who is trying to break into your Windows account? Luckily Windows comes with a built-in feature – Logon Auditing, which enables you to record logon, logoff and logon failure events, along with the user information and the time at which the computer was accessed.

In this article we’ll show you how to enable logon auditing to have Windows track which user accounts log in and when. This is particularly helpful in determining and analyzing any attacks on a local computer or over a network.

Part 1: Enable Logon Auditing in Windows

To enable Logon Auditing, we need to configure Windows Group Policy settings. Press Windows + R, type gpedit.msc and press Enter.

After the Local Group Policy Editor opens up, navigate to Local Computer Policy –> Computer Configuration –> Windows Settings –> Security Settings –> Local Policies –> Audit Policy. Double-click the Audit logon events policy in the right pane.


When the logon event property window opens up, check both Success and Failure to audit all types of account logon activities. Click Apply to save your changes.


From now on, every log in, log off and failed log in attempts will be recorded in the Event Viewer.

Part 2: View Logon Audit Events

To launch Event Viewer, click Start, type Event Viewer and hit Enter. In Windows 8, you can press the shortcut Windows + W and search for the Event Viewer applet.


In the Event Viewer window, navigate to the Windows Logs -> Security option to see the logs for both the successful and failed logon attempts.


Double click on one of the logon events, you will find out the details like the user that has been logged in or logged out, logon date and time, etc.



So that is how you can record and view logon events in Windows 7 Pro. Logon Auditing is also available in Windows 8 (Windows 8 Pro, Ultimate and Enterprise editions) too, although not in all the versions.

Fix: Unable To Execute Files In The Temporary Directory. Setup Aborted

October 27th, 2014 by Admin

When you try to install a program downloaded from the Internet in Windows 8, 7 or XP, you might receive the following error message:

Unable to execute file in the temporary directory. Setup aborted. Error 5: Access is denied.


Right-click your downloaded .exe file and select Run as administrator. This is a temporary fix and Microsoft needs to patch it up in their updates. The problem is with the security permissions on your profile temp folder. Here are step-by-step instructions to fix this error permanently:

Before sorting out this issue, we need to find out where the temp folder is located. This folder is different for each Windows user i.e., each logged-in user gets a separate “Temp” folder. Simply press Windows key + R to bring up the Run box. Type cmd and press Enter.

The Command Prompt will run with permissions of the current logged-on user. Type set TEMP and press Enter. It will display your profile temp folder. By default, the temp folder is stored in C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local directory in Windows 8/7/Vista, and in C:\Documents and Settings\{username}\Local Settings directory in Windows XP and previous versions.


Navigate to your profile temp folder. Right-click on the Temp folder and choose Properties. In the Properties window, click the Security tab, and then click Edit to change permissions.


Here select your account from the list and check the Full Control checkbox. When done, hit OK. Note that when you will check the Full Control checkbox, all other permissions will be automatically checked too.


Now go ahead and you should be able to install your program successfully.

2 Methods to Start SQL Server in Single User Mode

October 26th, 2014 by Admin

What is single-user mode?

There are certain situations when user may have to start a SQL Server instance in single-user mode. For example, you might need to restore your master database from a backup in the event of a failure or damage, detach the database and kill all the connections. Both actions require starting an instance of SQL Server in single-user maintenance mode.

When a database is started in single-user mode, the following events occur:

  • Any current connections to the database are dropped without warning
  • Only one user can connect to the database
  • The CHECKPOINT process is not started

I’m going to walk you through the process of putting your SQL Server database into single-user mode. This can be either done via SQL Server Configuration Manager by setting the startup parameters or through the Command Prompt.

Method 1: Start SQL Server in single-user mode through SQL Server Configuration Manager

Run SQL Server Configuration Manager. Choose SQL Server Services from the left panel and then right-click on desired SQL Server service that needs to run in single-user mode. Select Properties from the drop-down menu.


In SQL Server 2014 or 2012, click Startup Parameters tab. Type -m in the Specify a startup parameter box and then click Add.


If you’ve installed SQL Server 2008, 2005 or an earlier version, click Advanced tab. Append the ;-m to the end of the Startup Parameters box.


Click Apply to save your changes. Restart your SQL Server instance and it should then run in single-user mode.

Method 2: Start SQL Server in single-user mode through Command Prompt

First of all, you need to figure out the name of your SQL Server instance. Press Windows key + R to bring up the Run box. Type services.msc and press Enter to open the Services window.

Find your desired SQL Server service in the list, double click it. This will open the Properties dialog box for that service. Copy the service name listed there. In my example, the service name is MSSQL$SQLEXPRESS.


Open up a Command Prompt with administrative privileges and run the following command to stop the SQL Server service.
net stop service_name

The next step is to start the service in single-user mode. This is done by specifying /m parameter with net start command.


How to know if a running SQL Server instance is in single-user mode

When your SQL Server instance is started in single-user mode, it prevents multiple clients from connecting to the server at the same time. For example, if you’ve already connected to your DB with the SA account, and then try to login again through SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS), you’ll get the following error message:

Login failed for user”. Reason: Server is in single user mode. Only one administrator can connect at this time. (Microsoft SQL Server, Error: 18461)


To fix this issue, you need to remove -m from the startup parameters and restart your SQL Server instance, which will bring the database back to multi-user mode.

How to Extract Background Music from A Song or Movie

October 24th, 2014 by Admin

Is it possible to extract audio from a video file so that I can play music with MP3 player? Video Converter Assist is a handy utility that everyone needs nowadays which can extract audio, sound, or background music from home movies, YouTube videos, songs or any other video file. Here’s how.

How to Extract Background Music from A Song or Movie?

Click here to download the Video Converter Assist application. After the download is finished, run the setup file (about 8.2Mb) and follow the installation wizard to install it on your computer.

Launch the Video Converter Assist program. Click on Add File button and pick your video file which can be in AVI, FLV, MP4, MPG, WMV, MOV, SWF, RM format. It even supports more video formats than that, but those are the most common.

Set the mode as Audio, and then choose mp3, flac, wav, aac or mp2 as the output audio format. Click on the … button and choose the destination folder for storing your converted audio files.

Now, go ahead and click Convert and the extraction process will begin. The program is pretty fast, it took only one minute to extract audio from a 19 minute video clip. When extraction is over, you can see your audio file at the location specified! I checked the sound quality between the video and the audio file and they were exactly the same, so you’re not going to lose any quality in the extraction process. That’s it!

How to Enable Remote Connections in SQL Server 2014/2012/2008

October 23rd, 2014 by Admin

When you try to connect to a SQL Server instance from a remote computer, you might receive the following error message:

Cannot connect to SQL Server.
An error has occurred while establishing a connection to the server. When connecting to SQL Server 2008, this failure may be caused by the fact that under the default settings SQL Server does not allow remote connections. (provider: SQL Network Interfaces, error: 26 – Error Locating Server/Instance Specified) (Microsoft SQL Server)

After installing SQL Server, the remote connection feature is disabled by default, and you’re only allowed to connect to your database locally. This article explains how to configure remote connections for a default SQL Server 2014/2012/2008 instance that you want to connect to from a remote computer.

How to Enable Remote Connections in SQL Server 2014/2012/2008?

Open the SQL Server Management Studio and log on to your DB locally. Right-click server name in the left pane and select Properties.

Select the Connections page in the left pane and make sure that checkbox Allow remote connections to this server is selected. Once this is done, exit SQL Server Management Studio.


Open the SQL Server Configuration Manager, expand the node SQL Server Network Configuration and select Protocols for MSSQLServer (or whatever the name of your SQL Server instance is). Make sure that TCP/IP protocol is enabled.


Right-click on TCP/IP and select Properties. In the TCP/IP Properties dialog, select the IP Addresses tab and scroll down to IPAII. Make sure TCP Dynamic Ports is blank and that TCP Port is set to 1433.


Click OK to save your changes and restart your SQL Server instance. Now you should be able to connect to your SQL Server instance remotely using SQL Server Management Studio.


If there is still problem in remote connection, you most likely need to configure your firewall settings and make sure the TCP port 1433 is not blocked by your firewall.

How to Take Screenshots with Freeware Greenshot

October 22nd, 2014 by Admin

There are many programs available for taking screenshots. If you’re looking for a free option, Greenshot is is an excellent and open source screenshot tool for Microsoft Windows. It is free for both personal and commercial use. It’s much easier for a beginner to use than some paid screenshot tools. Here’s how to install Greenshot and use it to take screenshots in Windows 7.

How to Take Screenshots with Freeware Greenshot?

You can grab a free copy of Greenshot from its official website. Compatible with all Windows versions, the downloaded file is sized at nearly 1.3Mb. Double-click the setup file you have downloaded to install it on your computer.

After installation, right-click on the Greenshot icon in the system tray to access the Greenshot menu. Using this menu, you can take different types of screenshots, open an image in the Greenshot editor, set Preferences, and perform several other useful tasks.


As an example, we’re going to take a screenshot of the Skype application. Simple select the Capture window from the Greenshot menu, and you can then pick the Skype window to capture with a single click.


Thankfully, Greenshot also provides a list of keyboard shortcuts that making the jobs easier. If you need to take a screenshot for an active window, simply press the Alt + PrntScr hotkey. While pressing Ctrl + PrntScr you can capture the full screen.


Once a screenshot has been captured, a popup menu will display asking what you want to do with the screenshot. We can choose to save it to a folder, or open it in Greenshot’s image editor to add some enhancements to it.


Greenshot may not be the best screenshot-taking program. But it handles most basic screen capture needs easily. If you don’t need to capture video and don’t mind editing captures in another program, it does everything you are likely to need. In fact, Greenshot has become my screen capture program of choice.

Reset Windows 8.1 Password on Lenovo G410/G500/G510/G710 Laptop

October 21st, 2014 by Admin

If you forgot Windows 8.1 password on your Lenovo laptop, it’s no big deal to reset the password with the tool PCUnlocker. This step-by-step guide shows you how to reset lost Windows 8.1 password on Lenovo G series laptops, such as Lenovo G410/G500/G510/G710. PCUnlocker can run from either a boot CD or a USB stick, but I’ll use a CD in this guide.

How to Reset Windows 8.1 Password on Lenovo G410/G500/G510/G710 Laptop?

First, use an alternate PC to download the PCUnlocker software. Unzip the downloaded file and you’ll get a disc image named pcunlocker.iso. Burn the ISO file to a blank CD (or USB stick) with the freeware ISO2Disc.

Insert the burned CD to your locked Lenovo laptop. Before getting the laptop to boot from CD, you need to make some changes with the BIOS configurations. When your laptop is powered off, press the Novo button to turn it on.


When the Novo Button Menu screen appears, select BIOS Setup.

In the BIOS, go to the Exit tab. Set OS Optimized Defaults as Other OS, then Load Default Setting and save. Turn off the machine and then use the Novo button to enter BIOS Setup again.


Go to the Boot tab, change Boot Mode from UEFI to Legacy Support, and set Boot Priority as Legacy First. Save your changes and exit.


Turn off your computer and then press the Novo button again. When the Novo Button Menu is displayed, select Boot Menu. Next choose your CD/DVD drive and press Enter to boot from it.

Your computer will load the contents of the CD drive. When it is finished you will be presented with the PCUnlocker program, which lists your Windows 8.1 user accounts.

Choose the user name for which you want to reset the password, and click on Reset Password button to clear the password.

Congrats! You just reset your Windows 8.1 password. Reboot and take out the CD, and then change the Boot Mode back to UEFI. After that you can log on with a blank password for a local account, or log on with the new password Password123 if you use a Microsoft account as your login method.

VirtualBox and VMware Error 0x0000005D Fix: Your PC Needs To Restart

October 20th, 2014 by Admin

When you try to boot an existing virtual machine from a WinPE ISO image, your virtualization software VirtualBox or VMware may give you the following error, even if you’ve enabled the Virtualization Technology (VT) feature in your host PC’s BIOS.

Your PC needs to restart.
Please hold down the power button.
Error Code: 0x0000005D


The problem does not lie in the BIOS settings but your VirtualBox or VMware settings. 64-bit WinPE image cannot execute on virtual machine defined with a 32-bit operating system within VMware or VirtualBox. To temporarily work around the issue, change the Guest operating system to a 64-bit version. Remember to change it back when finished using WinPE on the VM.

Change Windows Version in VMware Workstation

In VMware Workstation, open the virtual machine settings editor (VM > Settings). Click the Options tab and you can then change the version of Guest operating system to x64 edition. For example, if your Guest OS is Windows Server 2003 Enterprise, try to select the corresponding 64-bit version – Windows Server 2003 Enterprise x64 Edition – from the drop-down list.


Change Windows Version in VirtualBox

In the Oracle VM VirtualBox Manager, highlight your virtual machine and click on Settings.


On the General tab, change the Version to 64-bit OS. In my example, I change the version of my virtual machine from Windows 7 (32-bit) to Windows 7 (64-bit).



This problem usually happens when you boot a 32-bit Guest OS from a Windows 8/8.1 or Windows 10 64-bit ISO image. But it’s no problem to boot a 64-bit Guest OS from 32-bit version of Windows PE.