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What Is Phishing And How Can You Protect Yourself From It?

Ever gotten an e-mail offer that seemed just a little bit too good to be true? Might’ve been a phishing attempt! These are everywhere and can come in many different forms. 

So what’s phishing exactly, how can you detect it and how can you keep safe?

What is phishing?

Phishing (pronounced like fishing) is a type of cyberattack that tricks the user into trusting the source and revealing sensitive information. Fishing being the perfect analogy, the bait is a legitimate-looking site, e-mail or file and when you take a bite, your identity, banking information and much more can be revealed and stolen.

Phishing Illustration
Credit Anne Nygård on Unsplash

Some phishing attempts are incredibly obvious, others are super elaborate. Like with most types of malware, cybercriminals have become extremely well-versed in phishing and anyone can fall for it. To help you recognize and avoid it, we’ll take you through a couple of phishing types and give you tips on what to do if faced with them.

Phishing techniques

E-mail phishing

This is actually the most common type of phishing. A cybercriminal creates an e-mail containing stuff like attractive offers, legitimate-looking attachments or links and makes it appear as though it’s coming from a trusted source.

Illustration of Email Phishing
Credit Justin Morgan on Unsplash

For example, it looks like it’s coming from your bank or your favorite retailer. The logo looks legit and the structure of the e-mail seems familiar, so you might get tricked into clicking on whatever clickable content is in it.

Unfortunately this exposes your device to malware that hands your data off to the hacker, who can decide what to do with it further.

SMS and social media phishing

Like the above example, you could be approached with lucrative offers or links via text messages or social media messages. Typically, the messages seem relevant to the user as they will be made to look like they’re related to apps or services you’re using.

Voice phishing

Voice phishing attacks are schemes that appear as though they’re coming from a credible number. Normally, you’ll get a call about something related to credit cards or taxes to get you into a state of worry, leading you to disclose personal information on the phone.

Spear phishing, whaling and BEC

Spear phishing normally targets specific individuals within a company who are likely to have access to sensitive data. Spear phishers spend time collecting information they can use to reach out to the individual looking as trustworthy as possible. They’ll typically lead with something relevant, for example mentioning an upcoming company event, and make a seemingly legitimate request.

Whaling is a more elaborate form of spear phishing, which targets people in even stronger positions such as executives or high-value individuals. The ultimate goal is to get them to transfer financial or other sensitive information that can be used to compromise the entire business.

Spear Phishing Illustration
Credit Azamat E on Unsplash

BEC, or Business e-mail compromise, is a specific spear phishing technique carried out via e-mail. While there are many ways this is done, most commonly you’ll see instances where the phisher poses as a CEO or similar executive, or as a lower-level employee in specific positions (e.g. sales managers or financial controllers).

In the first situation, the impersonator reaches out to employees requesting them to transfer certain files or pay invoices. In the second situation, the phisher takes control of the employee’s e-mail account and sends false instructions to other employees in order to obtain data and information from them.

What can you do?

There are many ways you can be aware and spot a phishing attempt. Here are some tips:

  • Always check the sender’s address in your e-mails, even when they seem to come from a familiar source.
  • In any instance where payment information is requested, be very, very careful.
  • If you are receiving attachments you never asked for and definitely didn’t expect, better not click on them. 
  • Beware of content that transmits a sense of urgency (sales deals, urgent updates to login credentials, etc.).
  • Bad spelling and grammar are usually a telltale sign of phishing.
  • Links that look shortened (e.g. Bit.ly) or just suspicious in general - if you have a bad feeling, do not click on them.
  • If you are receiving threats, you probably shouldn’t be clicking on anything in that message.
  • Always examine first-time senders in detail.
  • Block suspicious e-mail addresses, numbers and social media accounts.
  • If you are receiving a coupon for free stuff… You aren’t.
  • If you’re being asked to update your payment details by a service you use, such as Netflix, chances are it’s an impersonator.

Those are some of the ways to identify and prevent phishing attacks. However, sometimes phishers disguise themselves a little too well or a misclick happens and there you go - you’ve been exposed to malware.

Illustration of a Lock on Keyboard Keys
Credit FLYD on Unsplash

This won’t happen if you invest in powerful protection software from the get-go, though. A good antivirus program like Bitdefender will keep you safe from becoming a victim of phishing scams. In fact, it will protect you from malicious attacks overall.

Be it your household or your business you’re concerned about, there are a bunch of different packages and options available, providing different kinds of cybersecurity services. That’s the only way you can ever really be sure you aren’t at risk of a digital attack.

Summary

Have you ever been targeted by phishers and didn’t know that’s what it was until you read this article? Many can relate. Protect yourself before it’s too late!

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A Guide to Fixing Error Code 39

Code 39 - What is it?

Code 39 is a device driver error code that pops up when the Windows operating system cannot load the driver for the hardware you want to use.

This hampers your ability to use the hardware properly. The error code is almost always presented in the following format:

“Windows cannot load the device driver for this hardware. The driver may be corrupted or missing.” Code 39

Error Causes

A device driver is a software program that tells the operating system how to control a particular hardware device. Each hardware device has a different driver.

There are separate device drivers for printers, CD-ROM readers, and keyboards, to name a few.

Many device drivers are already built into the operating system. But sometimes you will need to install a new device driver when you want to use a new piece of hardware device that the operating system is not familiar with, or does not anticipate.

Regardless of whether or not the drivers are already integrated into the operating system, you may still experience code 39, typically because of the corrupted or outdated drivers.

Outdated and corrupted drivers cause hardware malfunction and failure, which trigger device driver error codes like code 39. Other causes include incorrect registry values.

Further Information and Manual Repair

Below are some of the easiest and most effective methods to resolve Device Manager error code 39 on your PC.

To follow and implement these methods, you don’t require any technical knowledge or expertise. Simply follow these instructions to fix the error right away.

Method 1 - Fix with a Simple Reboot

There is a possibility that the error code 39 is caused by some fluke within the Device Manager or your BIOS.

If that’s the reason, then a simple PC reboot can resolve the issue immediately. Therefore, before you try anything, it is advisable to restart your system.

If it works, then that is great, but if it doesn’t, then don’t worry, try other methods given below to fix this problem successfully.

Method 2 - Uninstall and Reinstall Drivers

If the error code 39 is generated due to faulty or outdated drivers, then simply uninstall and remove them and then reinstall new driver versions. There are two ways to remove faulty drivers.

Method One

  • One is, to go to the start menu, click on Control Panel, and then Add/Remove Programs.
  • Remove the program and the driver you think is causing problems. This will thoroughly remove all traces of the faulty driver.
  • To reinstall, follow the same steps but this time install the new device driver version.

Method Two

  • The other way is to go to the start menu, type Device Manager in the search bar, and then press enter to continue.
  • In the Device Manager, find and locate the problematic device.
  • After that, double-click the category of device that you wish to uninstall. Let’s say, Windows is unable to load the graphics card driver.
  • This means you will have to click on the Display Adapter category in the Device Manager to uninstall the graphics card.
  • After you have successfully uninstalled, Windows will prompt you to confirm device removal.
  • Simply click OK to confirm and proceed. To activate the changes, restart your PC.
  • To reinstall, go to the Device Manager, click on the Action tab and then select the option ‘Scan for Hardware Changes.’

This method, although effective in resolving error code 39,  can be time-consuming. To avoid the hassle and save time, try method 3.

Method 3 - Update Drivers Automatically with DRIVERFIX

If you would like to read more helpful articles and tips about various software and hardware visit errortools.com daily.
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Installing Windows 11 on Raspberry Pi 4
A lot of controversies and mixed emotions have come from statements about Windows 11 minimum system requirements, especially ones linked to TPM. Naturally, each time some software company giant announces how things are must have there are people who go out and prove them wrong. This time Raspberry Pi community was one which demonstrated that not only Raspberry Pi does not have a TPM module, it can run the full desktop version of Windows 11

Windows 11 on Raspberry Pi 4Raspberry Pi 4 and things you need for Windows 11 installation

In order to actually install Windows 11 on your Pi, there are certain things that you will need. Check out the below list and prepare everything.
  • Raspberry Pi 4 4GB or 8GB
  • A 32GB or larger SSD via a USB 3 caddy. Best for performance or 16GB or larger microSD card
  • USB boot enabled, see below.
  • A micro SD card with the latest Raspberry Pi OS
  • Windows 10 PC
  • USB to Ethernet or WiFi dongle
  • Bluetooth dongle (if you want Bluetooth)
  • Keyboard, mouse, HDMI, and power for your Raspberry Pi

Configuring Pi to boot from SSD

In order to boot from SSD be sure that firmware and bootloader are up to date on the latest version and upgrade if needed. Be aware that this firmware update can only be performed using the official Raspberry Pi OS. Also if you are eager and want to use a standard microSSD card instead of an SSD to run Windows 11 feel free to skip this entire section.
  1. Boot from microSSD with the latest Raspberry Pi OS on it.
  2. Update firmware and OS using the terminal by typing sudo apt update sudo apt full-upgrade sudo rpi-update
  3. Reboot your Pi
  4. Install the latest version of bootloader again using the terminal with the command sudo rpi-eeprom-update -d – a
  5. Reboot Pi
  6. Launch raspi-config on your Pi via terminal with sudo raspi-config
  7. Select option 3 (Boot options – Configure options for start-up) from boot options
  8. Select Boot ROM version and press ENTER
  9. Select latest and then OK
  10. Select NO when prompted to reset boot ROM to defaults on the latest version boot ROM selected screen. Press OK
  11. Select Boot order and press ENTER
  12. Select USB Boot and click on OK and remove microSD card from Pi
  13. Select Finish and click on NO when prompted to reboot

Creating Windows 11 installation image for Pi 4

In order to install Windows 11 on our Pi, we must create an installation image, follow the steps below explaining the process.
  1. Go to https://uupdump.net/
  2. Search for Windows 11 Arm
  3. Select the latest build for arm64
  4. Select Language on which you would like installer and Windows
  5. Pick Windows edition you would like
  6. Set download method to Download and convert to ISO and click on Create download package
  7. Extract downloaded content into win11 folder and go into it
  8. Double click on uup_download_windows.cmd
  9. On the security warning screen click on More info and then on Run anyway
  10. Wait for the process to finish completely
  11. Once the process is finished, press 0 to close the prompt

Installing image on microSSD or SSD

If previous steps of instruction were follower precisely you now have an ISO image that can be installed onto microSSD or SSD
  1. Connect SSD or insert microSSD card into your PC
  2. Go to https://www.worproject.ml/downloads
  3. Download Windows on Raspberry imager and extract it into the win11 folder
  4. Open Imager and allow it to make changes to your computer, set your language, and click on next
  5. Select storage drive where you would like to install Windows
  6. Set device type and click on next
  7. Select our Windows 11 ISO image we created and click on next
  8. On the drivers screen select Use the latest driver package available on the server
  9. On UEFI firmware select screen choose Use the latest firmware available on the server
  10. On configuration screen click on next
  11. Check your setting on the installation overview and if everything is ok click on install
  12. Wait for the whole process to be finished
  13. Once the process is completed, close Windows on Raspberry imager, take out SSD or microSSD card from PC and connect it on your Pi along with Pi peripherals.

Setting Windows 11 on Pi

In order to actually use Windows 11 on our Raspberry Pi we now have to set up the Windows 11 install using the standard post-installation setup sequence.
  1. Power up Pi and press ESC when prompted
  2. Go to Device manager and press ENTER
  3. Select Raspberry Pi Configuration
  4. Select Advanced configuration
  5. Set Limit RAM to 3GB to a disabled state, press F10 to save, and ESC to exit.
  6. Select Display configuration
  7. Set the resolution to desired option and press ENTER, F10 to save, and ESC to exit
  8. Go to CPU configuration
  9. Check if the CPU clock is set to default, if not set it
  10. Press ESC to go back all the way to the main menu
  11. Select Continue to exit BIOS and boot your Raspberry Pi with Windows 11 on it
And there you have it, fully working Windows 11 OS on Raspberry Pi despite what Microsoft says Note that due to lack of some drivers performance can be less than optimal, for example, full HD videos will not work since there are no compatible graphic drivers for Pi and some other stuff like Wi-Fi will also cause some issues but overall Windows 11 is working pretty well.
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Complete Ethernet cable guide

In today's modern world many households have internet access, most of the connection nowadays is done via Wi-Fi or wireless but there is a high probability that you have also a few devices connected via cable. There are of course many disadvantages and advantages between cable connection and wireless connection.

lan network cables

The main advantages of a hard cable connection are of course faster speed and stability compared to Wi-Fi. But if we look into the cables themselves there is also a big difference between them. Not all cables are the same and quality as well as speed vary a lot between them. Choosing the right cable is essential in order to make a maximum of your internet and we have some great tips and explanations of what cables do so you can make the right choice and enjoy your full internet potential.

Not all cables are the same

Cheap cables and expensive ones are not the same no matter what everyone tells you. The old proverb you get what you pay is true and more expensive cables will be made from better materials and will have a higher transfer rate.

Quality network cables are separated into different categories with proper markings and when buying one you should always look for these markings on the cables themselves, do not buy cables that do not have markings since they will often provide lower transfer rates or will not be shielded from outside influences resulting in packet drops and instability in a network.

Categories and what they mean are:

  • Cat-5 with a maximum speed of 100Mbps, typically unshielded.
  • Cat-5e with a maximum speed of 1Gbps, available in both shielded and unshielded varieties.
  • Cat-6 with a maximum speed of 10Gbps for runs under 55 meters (around 180ft), available in both shielded and unshielded varieties.
  • Cat-6a with a maximum speed of 10Gbps, shielded.
  • Cat-7 uses a proprietary GG45 connector rather than the standard RJ-45 connector seen on other cables for speeds of 10Gbps, shielded.
  • Cat-8 with a maximum speed of 25Gbps (Cat-8.1) or 40Gbps (Cat-8.2) at a distance of around 30 meters (around 100ft), shielded.

Unless stated, these standards are typically rated at their quoted speeds for a run of around 100 meters (around 330 ft) and use a standard RJ-45 Ethernet connector. Each generation of cable is designed to be compatible with the generations that came before it, so it’s possible (for example) to use a Cat-6a cable with a router that only supports speeds of 1Gbps.

Shielded cables

When purchasing higher quality cable you might not be able to choose if you have shielding or not since some standards like Cat-6a, Cat-7, and Cat-8 are always shielded. But if you do not have the need for these and you are satisfied with Cat-5e for example you can choose.

Shielded cables are a little more expensive but they will provide you with a coating that will eliminate interference from outside waves making cables more reliable. Of course, if the cable will go through a room that does not have many radio waves or some other interferences then buying a shielded cable is a waste of money.

Cable platings

Usually, there are two types of connector platings on connectors, silver, and gold, and people usually think that gold is much better but there are major differences between silver and gold platings and truth to be told there is no better one, both are different and should be considered depending on your need.

Silver plating will provide you with faster speed since its conductivity is larger than gold, but gold is slower on the oxidation front so its life span is longer. On the other hand, if your cables are always connecting and disconnecting gold will be first to be scrubbed off from the surface since the gold coating is much thinner.

Overall if you would only connect cable once and have slower internet than cable capacity gold is the way to go, in another case if you would use the cable as always connecting and switching and your internet plan is the same as cable transfer capacity you might want to go with silver one.

Cable material quality

Network cables are made from copper, your standard conduction material but even here there are differences in quality and therefore the chance of pocket losses over it. More quality less loss and more stable connection and this will depend on the purity of copper that is used in the cable itself. More purity in copper, more stability, simple as that.

Conclusion

So as you can see, there are a lot of different things that will influence your pick of proper network cable but the overall best advice is to get one that will fit well into your needs and setup. pair it up with your router and your internet plan since just simply buying something that you can not use is really a waste of money.

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Microsoft blocking Office users
Microsoft Office 365 banerMicrosoft starting as of today will block its Office 365 users if they are using Internet Explorer or early versions of Edge browsers. So if you are using older non Chromium Edge versions of Microsoft browsers you can no longer access Office services until you switch. Now normally I would fully support this kind of decision since Internet explorer is a slow and vulnerable browser and the edge is similar in that regard. The new edge browser is great and it should be used but the issue I have is that Office 365 is not free, it is a premium feature and I am wondering how Microsoft plans to deal with people that have already paid for service but suddenly cannot access it anymore.
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Malware Guide: How to Remove Webguard

What is Webguard?

Developed by Interesting Solutions, Webguard is a tool supposedly used for tracking those online who’ve developed a habit of tracking you. The application would provide logical analysis into a user’s website history, providing insight on what websites you’ve visited and also how persons are able to track your every move while browsing. While Webguard is unable to dispose of who specifically is tracking your computer usage, they’re able to determine what computer installed tracking codes or cookies on your computer system. In this case, it’s then left up to the user’s discretion to determine who they want to allow or block from tracking their online use.  Overall, this application allows the user some measure of freedom and control over their online experience. Like any other application, however, which has landed themselves a spot on Virus Total, Web guard has hidden agendas. At a distance, Webguard installs a service for Windows but later distributes advertisements. Technical details about Webguard include:
Product Version: 1.0.0.0 Original File Name: crss.exe Entry Point:  0x000C5AAE

Assessment of Webguard Potentially Unwanted Program

While Webguard claims to track your computer usage, information reported by the application isn’t sufficient for the common computer user. This brings us back to the ulterior motive or principal objective of developing Webguard – to advertise and generate revenue from clicks made by users on Ads displayed on Internet Browsers – namely Chrome, Internet Explorer and Firefox. Why should a computer user remove Webguard? Simply, it compromises one's Internet privacy and security and it keeps abreast of your Internet history. If you’re online for an extended period, you’ll see what Webguard does. While the publishers behind the application did not alert users to the use of web beacons, cookies for tracking, and other related tracking technology, that’s not why Webguard is considered unwanted. The program is potentially unwanted because of the unpredictable advertisements it displays. Not all sites are trusted and so it’s difficult to determine, in some cases, what websites are legit for business.

Remove Webguard with Spyhunter

In most cases, at least from what I’ve seen, Webguard is installed as a single application. After it was installed for this assessment, it could be found in ‘All Programs”. This meant that one could manually delete the application from their computer system (see manual steps below). However, is that really sufficient to completely rid your PC of Webguard’s blueprints? While you might opt to remove Webguard manually – maybe because it’s more economical – an automated process is able to completely eradicate hidden threats from Webguard. In comparison to manually removing Webguard, Spyhunter penetrates your computer system for all infections. In most cases, nasty threats are unable to be removed manually. Additionally, Spyhunter not only removes installed threats, but it detects incoming ones – hence, acting as a preventative tool. Furthermore, Spyhunter detects cookies placed on your computer by Webguard. These are all undetectable threats and so an automated tool, as Spyhunter, should be used to remove Spyhunter effectively from your computer.

Manual Steps for Removal of Webguard

I found this removal pretty simple. Depending on your Operating System, there will be slight discrepancies in the manual removal steps. Using the Windows 8 (8.1) OS on your computer:
  • Step 1: Locate the CONTROL PANEL on your computer using the SEARCH option.
  • Step 2: Once the search box appears , input 'CONTROL PANEL'.
  • Step 3: The Control Panel option will then appear. From the menu, choose the "Programs" option.
  • Step 4: Another menu will appear. Select "All Programs and Features".
  • Step 5: From the 'Programs list', search for the Webguard application.
  • Step 6: Right-click on Webguard when it's found.
  • Step 7:  Choose the "Uninstall" option.
  • Step 8:  Follow the uninstall wizard instructions until the Webguard application is fully removed.
To completely remove Bandoo from your computer, click here to download and install Spyhunter
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Word icon is not showing on .doc & .docx
Recently, a number of users reported seeing plain white icons on their “.docx” files instead of the Word icon. This kind of issue is mostly caused by a conflict with the default program settings in Windows which is why you may not see any Microsoft Word icon on your .docx files. So if you suddenly find that the Microsoft Word icon is either blank or missing and does not show properly on .doc and .docx document files of Office on your Windows 10 computer, then you can check out the potential solutions outlined below. Before you proceed, you can try to restart your computer as there are instances when a simple system restart can resolve some issues like this one. However, if it does not help, create a System Restore point first. This is to ensure that you can always undo the changes you are about to make in case something goes wrong. Once you have that covered, proceed to the following options.

Option 1 – Try to configure .docx files to open with “winword.exe”

You can try configuring the .docx files to open with the winword.exe in order to fix the problem.
  • Right-click on a .docx file and select the “Open with…” option.
  • After that, if a prompt appears with a message saying, “How do you want to open this file”, select the “More apps” option to proceed.
  • Next, scroll down and check the checkbox that says, “Always use this app to open .docx files” option.
  • Then click on the “Look for another app on this PC” link and choose the WINWORD.exe application from one of the following paths based on the installed Office version in your computer and click Open:
    • Word 2016 (64-bit): C:/Program Files/Microsoft Office/root/Office16
    • Word 2016 (32-bit): C:/Program Files (x86)/Microsoft Office/root/Office16
  • Now check if you can now see the Word icon on the .doc or .docx files.

Option 2 – Try changing the default Word icon via Registry Editor

  • Tap the Win + R keys to open the Run utility.
  • Then type “Regedit” in the field and hit Enter to open the Registry Editor.
  • Next, navigate to this path located in the left pane: HKEY_CLASSES_ROOTWord.Document.12DefaultIcon
  • From there, double click on the default value at the right pane and based on the Word version you are using as well as the architecture (32 bit or 64 bit) and then copy-paste the corresponding value in the Value data box:
    • For Word 2016 (64-bit) keep it as C:/Program Files/Microsoft Office/root/Office16/wordicon.exe,13
    • For Word 2016 (32-bit) Keep it as C:/Program Files (x86)/Microsoft Office/root/Office16/wordicon.exe,13
  • Once you’re done, tap Enter and then close the Registry Editor.
  • Restart your computer and see if the problem’s fixed.

Option 3 – Try to rebuild the Icon cache

You may want to rebuild the Icon cache as it could also help fix the issue.
  • Tap Win + E to open File Explorer and then click Folder Options and click Views to show Hidden System Files.
  • After that, go to C:Users%username%AppDataLocal folder and look for a file named Iconcache.db and delete it.
  • Next, go to C:Users%username%AppDataLocalMicrosoftWindowsExplorer.
  • From there, look for the following files and delete them.
    • iconcache_32.db
    • iconcache_48.db
    • iconcache_96.db
    • iconcache_256.db
    • iconcache_1024.db
    • iconcache_1280.db
    • iconcache_1600.db
    • iconcache_1920.db
    • iconcache_2560.db
    • iconcache_exif.db
    • iconcache_idx.db
    • iconcache_sr.db
    • iconcache_wide.dd
    • iconcache_wide_alternate.db
  • Restart your computer. This will purge and rebuild the icon cache.

Option 4 – Try fixing Office apps

Fixing the Office apps can help you resolve the Word icon issue. All you have to do is open Settings > Apps. From the app list, look for the Microsoft Office Desktop apps and select it and then click on the Advanced options and click Fix. After that, wait until the process is completed and restart your PC. However, if the problem still persists, repeat the steps again but this time, click on Reset instead of Fix.

Option 5 – Try to repair Office Installation

If the options given above didn’t work, you can try to repair the Office installation and see if it can fix the problem.
  • Open Control Panel and click on Programs and Features.
  • Next, right-click on the Office program that you want to repair which in this case is, Word.
  • Select Change and click Repair > Continue. After that, Office will start to repair Microsoft Word.
  • Wait until the process is done and then reboot your computer.
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How to Fix Runtime Error 217
Runtime Error 217 can be a big problem if you use your computer for business purposes and you have confidential data/documents stored on your system. This runtime error is quite dangerous. It can slow down your PC performance, lead to system failure and crash, make your system vulnerable to hacker’s attack, and also corrupt important files on your system.

Solution

Restoro box imageError Causes

There is no one particular cause behind the Runtime Error 217. This error can be attributed to several factors such as:
  • Corrupt, missing, or faulty register DLLs of programs. This is usually the cause for Runtime Error 217 when installation is unsuccessful and the crucial system files fail to be registered within the registry.
  • Exposure to Viruses like malware, adware, and spyware. Once a virus (es) gain access to your PC, you may experience Runtime Error 217. These malicious programs can damage your hard drive, boot sectors, memory banks, and registries.
  • Outdated Msvcrt.dll (a Microsoft Visual C++ file) file called.
  • Incorrect Regional settings

Further Information and Manual Repair

If you see Runtime Error 217 message pop up on your computer screen, you must fix and repair it right away before it becomes a big threat to you and your PC. Though Runtime Error 217 is alarming this does not mean that you need to panic. Keep calm and follow the recommended solutions to fix Runtime Error 217 given below.
  • If the error occurs because you called the outdated Msvcrt.dll file, then you must update the file. This can be easily done by clicking the start menu, accessing the control panel, and then hitting the Windows update tab.
  • When you experience Runtime Error 217 due to incorrect regional settings on your PC, then to resolve this issue simply go to the start menu and select Control Panel. Now in the control panel, you’ll find the option clock, click on it and go to the language and region settings. Choose your specific regional settings and save.
  • If the cause of the Runtime Error 217 is incorrect registry entries and DLL files corruption, then to fix the error, you need to download a Runtime Error 217 fixer. After you download this repair tool, run it on your PC. It scans and detects corrupted files and repairs the error swiftly.
  • Nonetheless, if the cause of this problem is a virus, then you need to install a powerful antivirus program. When you run it, the antivirus scans your PC for viruses. Once the scanning is complete the results are displayed on the screen. The results show exactly how many viruses you have on your PC. Once the scan is complete, delete all the files and click repair.
Regardless of whether you have experienced the Runtime Error 217 on your PC or not, it is advisable to install a powerful antivirus and run it every time you use your PC. By running it regularly, you can make sure that you are not exposed to viruses, malware, and spyware programs. Even if your PC gets infected by them, you can delete and remove them timely before the damage is done.
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SettingSyncHost.exe High CPU usage
One of the important processes in the Windows operating system is the Setting Synchronization or SettingSyncHost.exe. This process is the one responsible for synchronizing the settings of your computer with other devices. It is the one that replicates settings like OneDrive, Internet Explorer, wallpapers, and so on, to other systems. However, it has been known to cause high CPU usage in Windows 10 and there are times when it causes the system to freeze or system lags. So if you notice that the SettingSyncHost.exe process is causing high CPU usage in your computer, worry not for this post will guide you in fixing them. You have to be cautious when you notice high CPU usages caused by system processes since cybercriminals mostly set the names of viruses in a way that the system or the user won’t be able to identify them. Cyber crooks could name the virus and malware the same as one of the system processes like SettingSyncHost.exe to make it seem like it’s a legitimate process. Thus, you need to keep in mind that original system processes like the SettingSyncHost.exe file are located in the System32 folder. The original SettingSyncHost.exe file is located in the System32 folder. To check for the same, right-click on the troublesome process in the Task Manager and select Open file location. If the place is any other than the System32 folder, run a full system anti-virus scan on the system. The SettingSyncHost.exe causes high CPU usage when it gets stuck in the sync process and is not able to come out of the loop. To fix this problem, you need to follow the solutions offered below but before you proceed, make sure that you create a System Restore point first.

Option 1 – Apply some registry tweak

The first thing you can do is to apply some tweaks to the Windows Registry. To get started, follow these steps:
  • Tap the Win + R keys to open the Run utility and type “Regedit” in the field and then tap Enter to open the Registry Editor.
  • Next, navigate to this registry path: HKEY_CURRENT_USERSoftwareMicrosoftInputPersonalizationTrainedDataStore
  • From there, right-click on the key and select Permissions.
  • After that, check the box next to “Allow” for Full Permission for every user group.
  • Now click on the Apply and OK buttons to save the changes made.
  • Then restart your computer.

Option 2 – Close the Host process for setting synchronization

If the registry tweak didn’t work, you can try to close the host process for setting synchronization, especially if this process continues to hog resources. You can terminate this process by opening the Task Manager. From there, end the process or task of the host process. On the other hand, you can also turn off the Host process for synchronization by opening Settings > Accounts > Sync settings located in the left pane. After that, turn off the Sync setting.

Option 3 – Run the Hardware and Devices Troubleshooter or the Performance Troubleshooter

Hardware and Devices Troubleshooter:

  • The first thing you need to do is click on Start and then on the gear-like icon to pull up the window for Settings.
  • After opening Settings, look for the Update and Security option and select it.
  • From there, go to the Troubleshoot option located on the left-hand side of the list.
  • Next, select Hardware and Devices from the list and open the Troubleshooter and run it. Once it is doing its job, wait for it to complete the process and then restart the system.
  • After the system restarts, check if the problem’s now fixed. If not, refer to the next option given below.

Performance Troubleshooter:

  • Tap the Win + R keys to open the Run dialog box.
  • Type “exe /id PerformanceDiagnostic” in the field and hit Enter to open the Performance troubleshooter.
  • Then click on Next to get started. Wait until the process is completed.

Option 4 – Try scanning your computer using Windows Defender

As mentioned, it is possible that the SettingSyncHost.exe could be infected with a virus or malware. To eliminate it, you have to scan your computer using security programs like Windows Defender.
  • Tap the Win + I keys to open Update & Security.
  • Then click on the Windows Security option and open Windows Defender Security Center.
  • Next, click on Virus & threat protection > Run a new advanced scan.
  • Now make sure that Full Scan is selected from the menu and then click the Scan Now button to get started.
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Deleting a User Account in Windows
There are instances when there are multiple accounts which is the result when there are a lot of users who use the computer. Some may use it more often, while others may seldom use it. Having multiple accounts can be quite confusing and inconvenient especially if it takes a lot of space. Thus, in this post, you will be guided on how you can delete a User Account on your Windows 10 computer, as well as how you can create a backup of the existing profile data and files. All the data of user accounts can be found at C:/Users, where its folder name will be exactly the same as the name of the user. You can check the exact user’s name by simply using the “net user” command either via Command Prompt or Windows PowerShell. Once you delete a user account, its folder, along with its files, will also be deleted. You can also create a backup for user files and the best way to do that is by copying the folder to other partitions or to an external drive. Here are two methods you can check out to delete a user account in Windows 10 – you can do it via Windows Account settings or via the command line. For more details, follow each one of the options provided below.

Option 1 – Delete the user account using Windows Account settings

  • First, go to Settings > Accounts > Family & other users.
  • Next, select the account you want to delete and click on the Remove button. This will open a confirmation window along with a warning message and two buttons that say, “Delete account & data” and “Cancel”.
  • Click on the Delete account & data button to delete the user account.
Note: Once you remove a user account, it will also remove all its corresponding data such as items like Documents, Photos, Music, Desktop, and other related folders. Thus, if you have not created a backup, then you won’t be able to recover those files.

Option 2 – Delete the user account using the command line

If you want to delete several user accounts, then doing it via Command Prompt or Windows PowerShell is a lot quicker. To get started, follow these steps:
  • In the Start Search, type “command prompt” and from the search results that appear, right-click on Command Prompt and select the “Run as administrator” option.
  • Next, type the “net user” command and hit Enter to execute it. This will show you the exact usernames on the computer.
  • After that, type the “net user <username> /delete” command and hit Enter to execute it. This will delete the account and all of its data without any warning. You have to replace “<username>” with the name of the user account.
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Touchpad Set user settings to driver failed
One of the useful things you can use on your laptop is touchpads. They help users in achieving tasks through the gestures and multi-finger tap or touch support it brings in the scope for various shortcuts. However, not all times touchpad brings productivity as it can also encounter some issue every now and then. One of these issues has been reported on a couple of Lenovo laptops that use touchpad drivers from the Alps Pointing Device. According to the reports, an error saying, “Set user settings to driver failed” when they use the touchpad. This type of error on the touchpad usually occurs when a computer boots up and it could be caused by a faulty update on the Alps pointing device driver which is being installed in the background. To fix this error on the touchpad, you could try to disable the Alps pointing device entry from the MSConfig or you could try to get the latest version of the driver or uninstall the driver altogether. Before you proceed with the troubleshooting tips given below, make sure that you create a System Restore point first. Once you have that covered, proceed to the following options.

Option 1 – Try disabling the entry of the Alps pointing device from MSConfig

This first given option was able to fix the problem for many users so to get started, follow these steps:
  • In the Start Search box, type “MSConfig” and select System Configuration from the search results.
  • Next, go to the Services tab and look for the Alps pointing device entry from the list that appears, and uncheck it.
  • Then click the Apply and OK buttons to save the changes made.
  • Now restart your computer and see if the error in the touchpad is now fixed.

Option 2 – Try to download and install the latest version of the driver

The next option you can check out to fix the error is to download and install the latest version of the driver from the official website of Lenovo support. Note that an updated version of the touchpad driver will most likely get rid of the error. However, you have to make sure that the version you’re going to get is compatible with your existing Windows version.

Option 3 – Try to uninstall the Alps Pointing device driver

If the first two given options didn’t work, you can try uninstalling the Alps Pointing-device driver instead. You can do this under the Mice and other pointing devices section. After you uninstall the driver, restart your computer and delete the driver’s leftover folder inside this location in File Explorer (C:/Program Files). Once you’re done, restart your computer and check if the error is now gone. Keep in mind that after you’ve uninstalled the driver, any extra configuration features that Lenovo drivers offered before the uninstallation will no longer be available.
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