How to Fix Your PC Problems without Taking it to a Technician


Computer problems cause frustrations and delays in deadlines, and a host of other issues. So how do you fix your PC problems? Rush it to the technician every time it acts up? This can run into serious money. Some computer technicians charge over $100 just for a basic repair job. So what is the alternative? Do it yourself!

Here are 6 ideas you can follow to fix your own computer and avoid the high repair costs:

1. Troubleshoot software issues first.

Remove the last program you installed to see if that solves the problem. Statistically, most computers problems are related to software, not hardware. And while hardware problems and device conflicts can occur, it is more common for the culprit to be software-related. So one thing to do is to think about the last software that was installed before the symptoms began and remove it to see if this solves the problem. It could be that the software conflicts with some of your other software already on your computer or it may be trying to share files that are causing problems with your system. Whatever the case, the only way to know if it is a software issue is caused by another software is to remove it. Then reboot and test your system to see if it improves.

2. Check for unplugged hardware or connection problems.

If the software test doesn’t solve the issues . Sometimes your computer gets bumped or a cord gets knocked out of a port. Something this simple can cause your computer to malfunction. Remember that everything is plugged into the motherboard. So if anything is knocked loose, it is not making the connections it needs to function correctly. In these cases, finding the loose cord or USB connection will solve the problem without any need to take it to a technician.

3. Go through Windows trouble-shooting process.

Windows has a number of pre-installed tools that may help you find the problem. Simply go to the CONTROL PANEL and DEVICE MANAGER to check for hardware conflicts and run the Windows tests located under TROUBLESHOOTING that can be found FIND AND FIX PROBLEMS under system security. Keep in mind when you run Windows tests, however, that Windows will sometimes produce false error messages. It does this because it is programmed to always look for the most logical solution to the problems it finds. So you should always temper this with common sense and use your own logic in determining what might be wrong.

4. Check for hardware conflicts.

Using the Windows troubleshooting may also help with finding hardware conflicts. But the best way to tell is to go to DEVICE MANAGER and see if you find any warning messages beside your various hardware devices. Sometimes this is caused by a driver issue. Try to update your software associated with the device when possible or try removing the device then rebooting. If the device is still on your computer, Windows will find it and install it again. Sometimes just reinstalling a device or associated drivers or software may be enough to solve the problem.

5. Clean up the mess (defrag, and system tools).

I cannot stress this point enough. If you use your computer regularly, it is going to gather junk, misplace files, and get a lot of things out of place. So run your system tools as often as possible to clean up the mess. When this isn’t enough to solve the problem, follow #7.

6. Invest in an extra registry cleaner program such as Norton’s Utilities.

Oftentimes, it’s not enough to just run Windows tools or system utilities. When you need something to really deep clean your registry (and MOST computer problems are either software or registry-related), try a stronger tool like Norton Utilities. Norton Utilities (by Symantec) is designed to find all of he problems in Windows as well as potential hardware and software conflicts. So it covers a lot of issues. You can download the trial for 30 days from Symantec’s main site then registration is $29.99 for 3 computers.

These 6 things should arm you with a lot of power when your system decides to act like a spoiled child and make your life miserable. But sometimes problems are just too much to handle on your own. If these 7 tests don’t work, look for a reliable computer technician in your area. It’s better to spend a little money now fixing a small problem then a LOT of money later fixing a big one.

Six Benefits of Using Open Source Storage Systems for Businesses


Modern companies need to process a significant amount of digital information and even a small business needs to store terabytes of data. Eventually, the availability of an enterprise storage system becomes a necessity. Many companies choose commercial, proprietary solutions, but open source technology is mature enough to become the backbone of our enterprise storage system. Here are benefits of using open source solutions for our storage requirements:

1. Highly customizable

The market is simply crowded with so many enterprise solutions and we don’t always find one that fits our needs. It is important to find ideal solutions and settle for that. When starting an open source solution, we need to start from scratch. There are many pieces and details that we need to assemble together. This allows us to make something unique that could match our company better than those commercial, ready-to-use solutions. When it is done, we could be sure that those solutions will serve us well. There are open source alternatives that we could use for enterprise needs, such as SUSE. It is a Linux-based distro with widespread community and support. It also includes some of the most comprehensive solutions for enterprise storage. We could also use other open source technologies, such as Samba that glues our system together. With Samba, we are able to bridge the gap between many storage devices, servers and desktops in our office. In fact, open source solutions can make our lives infinitely easier. We may handle massive storage with open source solutions and we could choose NoSQL. It allows us to create scalable clusters and we could add more machines. With NoSQL database technology, we should be able to create a reliable enterprise computing solution with efficient architecture, object-oriented programming and structured data. As an alternative, we may use comprehensive Linux solutions. Turnkey Linux include all features needed by modern companies. As a storage-centric solution, Turnkey Linux is consisted of File Server, MongoDB and ownCloud. It is easy to create a customizable and ideal storage solutions based on our requirements.

2. Good integration with cloud-based technology

Linux simply rules the cloud and we can’t speak of the online realm without mentioning the likes of Ubuntu, SUSE and Red Hat. In this case, it is a good idea to free ourselves from cloud providers, such as Google, although they claim that they are using open source solution. With Openstack and OwnCloud, it is possible to create our own in-house, open source solutions for enterprise usages.

3. Lower costs

When we are planning to go open source, we should make sure that we are able to save money, because these solutions are supposedly free. Overall, with good implementation, we should be able to ensure lower upkeep and cost of entry. It obviously takes some money to set up a system, although it is based on open source technology. However, once our system is finally up and running, it is not necessary to pay for any 3rd party support. Because we build our own enterprise solutions, we know them better than anyone else on the planet. With free software and in-house support, it is very likely that we will keep the overall costs down.

4. Scalable solutions

Many open source solutions for enterprise usages are completely scalable. If we need more space and performance, it is possible to throw additional hardware units into the mix. Standard storage units based on hard drives are essentially affordable and it is possible to create a massive storage system with much lower costs compared to typical proprietary solutions. The addition of new hardware can be essentially non-disruptive and our business operations should continue smoothly without a hitch.

5. Better flexibility

Storage system is essential for our business and we should be allowed to deploy it based on our current situations. Open source solutions provide us with flexibility. As an example, we could get specific features up and running, while disabling a few others. Codes can be altered to fit our requirements and then redeployed.

6. Improved agility

Compared to proprietary solutions, open source technology is more agile. Developments in open source industry happen quickly and companies that require rapid deployment and development should turn to open source technology. Projects like Hadoop and OpenStack offer a lot of promises for companies and they evolve at blinding speeds.
Overall, many companies are already dependent on open source solutions. If we are using an outdated proprietary solution, it is a good idea to migrate to better, open-source solutions. Within the cost-effective and flexible community of developers and users, companies will find a reliable and effective solution.


BIOS change announcement

A new BIOS structure has been created for PCChips motherboards that will be able to support auto-detection of LAN and IEEE 1394 features. Under the new structure, one BIOS file will support all models in a series, e.g. M930U, M930LU, M930FLU.
However, on some series’ boards with early BIOS date codes, an error message will appear saying ” Error 9 – The BIOS tag is incorrect.” This message will appear if trying to flash the BIOS on the following series boards with BIOS date codes earlier than the dates stated below:

M830/M831 series with chipset SiS735 Issue date: 1st October 2002
M920/M921/M922/M925/M927 series with south bridge VT8233/VT8235 Issue date: 2nd July 2002

1394 and LAN
M841 series with south bridge SiS962: Issue date: 28th August 2002
M930/M935 series with south bridge SiS962: Issue date: 13th September 2002

Should the error message appear, ignore it as there is NO PROBLEM and continue the BIOS flashing procedure as normal.

For BIOS date codes with later dates than these, the error message will not appear.

Components for PC manufacturers dominate 13th Comdex

Exhibition brings curious and innovating products that will be in the stores by the end of the year.
Once again, the industry of PC assembly parts dominated the exhibition of IT Brazil Comdex Sucesu-SP. Full of suppliers of cabinets, keyboards and mouses, the exhibition unveiled either curious and innovating products that soon will be on the stores’ shelves. The event, which was held at the Anhembi Park, São Paulo, ended Friday.
One of the innovations that drew the attention was the Tablett ( Virtual Keyboard, which the company promises to bring to Brazil till the end of the year. The device is little larger than a lighter and projects on the table, with laser light, a true keyboard, which can be connected to PC’s or palmtops. The suggested price is about R$600.
Those who enjoy customizing their PC can already check CPU cooling solutions of Thermaltake, imported by Via Brasil ( The company demonstrated its Tower 112 (R$ 310), a very large copper tower that accelerates the heat exchange between the chip and the environment. At the exhibition, the device could reduce the temperature of a Pentium 4/ 3,2 GHz Extreme Edition from the traditional 70ºC to 36ºC.
Another outstanding component was Bigwater, a water cooler for PC’s. The kit has not a suggested price yet. But it will be cheaper than the Aquarius 3 model, which costs R$1,200.

Notebook GSM – Leadership (, through its Unicell division, announced a PCMCIA card for connection to GSM telephony networks. The card, called GPRS Unicell, costs approximately R$1,200 and connects to the Internet at a maximum nominal speed of 115 Kbps (in the field, the average performance is 47 Kbps). For the end of the year, the company promises a card that will be able to use GSM operators Edge data service.
With its own booth, Taiwanese PC Chips showed products that soon will be available in Brazil. It’s the case of EZ Watcher 2, a sophisticated barebone-type micro with autodiagnosis display and thumbwheel that increases the speed, in clock, of the processor. Or the G320 and A530+, two low cost notebooks that use Via C3 1.2 GHz and Transmeta 5800 chips, respectively. Nave Informática (, distributors of PC Chips products in Brazil, said that the A530+ notebook shall cost about R$3,000.


The COMPUCHANNEL Awards is organized by the Compudata and Compuchannel magazine that is distributed all over Central America and Miami.

On September 2nd 2004, the awards dinner ceremony was held at the Intercontinental Hotel in Guatemala City; there, the industry’s top distributors, retailers, and other companies were amongst the many invited to be part of such event, even the Vice-President of Guatemala was an honorary present.

Prior to the ceremony, all of the companies had to each submit and present their products in front of the judges in a private room in the Hotel. After each presentation the judges would evaluate the product and review key facts that were mentioned throughout the presentation. PCCHIPS submitted three products, The TidalWave T12 (for Intel Version), the TidalWave W32 (for AMD Version), and the 9600SE Radeon (for Graphics Card).

This type of presence is extremely good for PCCHIPS, in fact it marks the beginning of a new era for PCCHIPS USA INC. A great way to celebrate our 10th year anniversary.

Congratulations PCCHIPS USA INC!!!

Putting a new twist on PC Design – Over clocking a CPU has never been so easy.

PCWave, Inc. today announces its’ EZ-Watcher technology that puts the consumer in control of the power. Users can squeeze every ounce of performance out of the processor and monitor the system on the easy to read LED management window.

The LED display window on the PC chassis has the patented EZ-Watcher technology for monitoring both CPU and system performance. The user can now monitor the frequency of the CPU as they increase the speed by simply rotating a dial on the front of the chassis. The motherboard, system memory, hard drive and CD/DVD drives are also constantly monitored, with warning lights indicating any potential problems.

The EZ-Watcher technology makes hardware monitoring as easy as knowing when to service a car. When the Memory Warning light is on, a consumer knows it’s time to replace a $20 memory module, rather than spending $800 on a new system. System integrators can also save time on diagnosing problems during the assembly process.

“With our EZ-Watcher technology, everyone can now enhance and monitor their PC performance at a glance”, says See See Lo, CEO of PCWave, Inc. “This new platform gives the white box PC makers a boost over their Tier-1 competitors.”

The PCChips EZW-3060 is the first product to be released with the EZ-Watcher technology. This system platform consists of a compact aluminum chassis, measuring 162mmx263mmx310mm, a choice of motherboards with 5 USB ports supporting Intel or AMD CPUs, a 6 in 1 Flash card reader and an external power supply that reduces fan noise. The low noise, and the 5.1 audio output make this an ideal platform for digital media applications. Prices start from $169.00.

M947 and M847 Game Demonio motherboards earn top marks from Brazilian reviewers

PCCHIPS video on-board motherboards won rave reviews from Clubedohardware, one of Brazil’s most trusted sites for impartial PC gear reviews.
The reviews, posted January 14 at ; praise the M947 and M847 video motherboards for their performance and good cost/benefit ratios.

The M947 is designed for Intel Pentium 4 processors; the M847 is designed to work with Athlon or Duron processors.

“We were really impressed by the M947,” Club Edo Hardware reviewers wrote. “Unlike other on-board video motherboards, M947 has a very good performance. It is the first on-board video we have seen that performs well running the main 3D games available on the market like Quake III and Counter Strike.”
The site’s recommendation:

“If you are looking to buy a motherboard with an on-board video with good performance for your Pentium 4, the best choice is PCChips M947.” Clubedohardware displayed similar enthusiasm for the M847.”

“We were (also) really impressed by M847. Unlike most on-board video motherboards that have flooded the market, its 3D performance is very good and is the first motherboard with on-board video that can run 3D games like Quake III and Counter Strike with good performance.”

“Besides its good performance, this motherboard has an excellent overclocking capability, editors noted.”

“If you are looking for a motherboard with on-board video with good performance for your Athlon or Duron processor, the best choice is PCChips M847.”

” Game Demonio is a very appropriate name for this series, the review concluded.”

“Believe us: You won’t regret buying (either of these) motherboards.”

PCChips M985G Motherboard Delivers Industry-Leading PCI-E Pro Technology Plus Multi-Monitor Display Function

Building a bridge to the future for its customers, PCChips today debuted the M985G motherboard incorporating PCI-E Pro, an exclusive innovation found only in PCChips motherboards.
With PCI-E Pro, the PCChips motherboard can overcome original design limitations to support the PCI-E x16 slot for upgrading the expansion of a PCI-E x16 graphic card and supports the multi-monitor display.

The M985G’s multi-monitor display enables the connection of a second monitor, increasing user productivity by expanding the desktop area for multitasking. With the expanded desktop, a user can simultaneously work on more than one task by moving items from one monitor to another or stretching a single screen across two monitors.

Powered by the Intel® 915GV chipset and the latest LGA775 Intel® Pentium 4/Celeron D processors, the M985G has the muscle required for the most demanding current applications plus the power to accommodate future technological innovations. The Intel® 915GV chipset uses an 800-MHz front-side bus and includes integrated graphics and graphics engine. The chipset supports DirectX 9.0, OpenGL 1.4, Pixel Shader version 2.0 and up to 128 Mbytes of frame buffer memory. Ready to deliver outstanding performance from CRT, flat panel and wide-screen display devices, the chipset core is optimized for low power and dynamically adjusts display resolution to match a monitor’s type and aspect ratio.

The M985G motherboard 800MHz FSB, Dual DDR2 533/DDR400 architecture, PCI-E Pro and Hyper-Threading Technology combine to provide a potential framework for excellent performance while its Hyper Streaming Engine (HSE) powered by Intel enhances overall system performance and stability.

Thanks to smart integration of future and current technologies, the M985G can be easily upgraded with memory modules. With both Dual DDR2 and DDR 1 engineered in, a M985G user can enjoy the stability of Dual DDR1 and also experience the latest DDR2 architecture, all on one board. Better yet, with an onboard LAN, four Serial ATA and eight USB 2.0 ports, make the M985G a convenient solution for networking and fast peripheral connections.

In addition to providing improved performance compared to current standards, motherboards with PCI-E Pro provide scalability and investment protection for the future.
Key Specifications:
– LGA775 socket for latest Intel® Pentium 4/Celeron D processors
– FSB: 800/533 MHz
– Intel 915GV+ ICH6 chipset
– Dual-channel DDR and DDR2 memory architecture
– Two 184-pin DDR DIMM or two 240-pin DDR2 DIMM sockets support up to 2GB
– DDR400/333 2.5 V DDR SDRAM or DDR2 533/400 1.8V DDR2 SDRAM support
– One PCI-E Pro slot, one PCI Express slot, two PCI slots, one CNR slot
– Realtek RTL8110C 10/100 Mbps fast Ethernet controller
– Audio-AC’97 Codec
– Ultra DMA 100/66
– Supports 4 USB 2.0 ports
– Supports 4 SATA devices
– Micro-ATX Form Factor, 244*244mm


About Us

2004 marks the 10th Anniversary of the founding of PCCHIPS USA, Inc. (formerly PC Wave, Inc). PCCHIPS USA is a leading supplier of motherboards and PC peripherals in the world. Incorporated in California in 1994, the company has experienced steady growth driven by sales of innovative, quality products at low cost and a passionate dedication to delighting customers. After ten years, PCCCHIPS has established itself as one of the world’s leading motherboard and peripheral manufacturers and continues to provide superior value and customer service.

PCCHIPS has warehouse facilities in Fremont-California, and Miami-Florida. Customers benefit from fast local service and the power of a global industry leader. The skilled R&D teams, based in Taiwan’s own “Silicon Valley”, ensure that new and exciting technologies are continually being added to the product lines. Modern production facilities in China produce a high volume output of products that exceed international ISO9002 and ISO14001 quality standards. Only the best products are made available to our customers – at the best prices. The company’s global dominance gives it significant marketplace leverage that is passed along to customers in the form of lower prices.

PCCHIPS motherboards have long been recognized as the best value in the market with cutting edge technology. Other product lines including Notebook computers, add- on cards, barebone systems and other peripherals that are all manufactured with the same guiding philosophy. PCCHIPS customers have long realized recognized that VALUE is the key success factor in today’s competitive PC market. “PAY LESS, GET MORE” is what customers can always expect – and get – with PCCHIPS products.

We are proud to celebrate the 10th anniversary of PCCHIPS USA, where “Making Your PC Competitive” is not just a motto, it’s our mission!