Archive for April, 2012

Printer not responding?

April 30, 2012

So I go to print my task list like I always do on Saturday and my Canon printer comes up with an error stating it is not responding.  So how do you troubleshoot this kind of problem?  Here are the steps:

1. Check to ensure your USB printer cable is still plugged into the back of the printer and seated properly.  Also check the other end which plugs into the back of your computer.

2. Under Printers and Faxes, make sure your printer is selected as the default printer (right-click: Make default) and ensure it is online.  (Right-click on your printer and choose “Use Printer Online”)

3. If both of the above are fine, then restart both the printer and the computer your printer is attached to.  This fixes 95% of the issues.

4. If it still will not connect, then you will need to reinstall the printer software.  Go find the Printer Driver CD or download the software from the manufacturer website.


April 26, 2012

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Business Computer Problems?

April 25, 2012

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How to Setup a Custom Logon Screen Background in Windows 7

April 25, 2012
Windows 7 makes it possible to change the welcome screen that appears when you start your computer without any third-party software, but this setting is well hidden. You can set any image you like as your background.This setting is intended for original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to customize their systems, but there’s nothing stopping you from using it yourself. All you have to do is change a single registry value and put an image file in the correct location.

Enabling Custom Backgrounds

This feature is disabled by default, so you’ll have to enable it from the Registry Editor. You can also use the Group Policy Editor if you have a Professional version of Windows – scroll down a bit for the Group Policy Editor method.

Launch the Registry Editor by typing regedit into the search box in the Start menu and pressing Enter.


In the Registry Editor, navigate to the following key:



You’ll see an DWORD value named OEMBackground. If you don’t see it, right-click in the right pane, point to the New submenu and create a new DWORD value with this name.

Double-click the OEMBackground value and set its value to 1.


Note that selecting a new theme in the Appearance and Personalization window will “unset” this registry value. Selecting a theme will change the value of the key to the value stored in the theme’s .ini file, which is probably 0 – if you change your theme, you’ll have to perform this registry tweak again.


Changing the setting in group policy will allow it to persist even when you change your theme, but the Group Policy Editor is only available in Professional editions of Windows.

If you have access to the Group Policy Editor, launch gpedit.msc from the Start menu.


Navigate to the following section in the Group Policy Editor window:

Computer Configuration\Administrative Templates\System\Logon


You’ll find a setting named “Always use custom login background.” Double-click it and set it to Enabled.


Setting An Image

Your image file must be less than 256 KB in size. It’s also a good idea to use an image file that matches the resolution of your monitor, so it won’t look stretched.

Windows looks for the custom logon screen background image in the following directory:


By default, the info and backgrounds folders don’t exist. Navigate to the C:\Windows\System32\oobe folder and create them yourself by right-clicking inside the folder, pointing to New, and selecting New Folder.


Copy your desired background image to the backgrounds folder and name it backgroundDefault.jpg.


The change will take effect immediately – no system reboot required. The first time you log out or lock your screen (try the WinKey-L keyboard shortcut), you’ll see your new background.


Third-Party Tools

You don’t have to do this by hand. There are a variety of third-party tools that automate this process for you, like Windows Logon Background Changer, which we’ve covered in the past. Windows Logon Background Changer and other utilities just change this registry value and put the image file in the correct location for you.


To get the default logon screen back, just delete the backgroundDefault.jpg file. Windows will use the default background if no custom background image is available.