Windows’ latest update for Vista crashed my laptop computer – my Dell XPS M1530 – boy that sure sounds like a sexy name for a computer doesn’t it? It kind of reminds me of something Marvin the Martian would say. He was that famous Looney Tunes character that was always aiming his death ray at Earth; the Illudium Q-36 Explosive Space Modulator (said in a nasally tone) that was going to blow up our planet because it blocked his view of Venus. Somehow Bugs Bunny would always outsmart him and save our beloved Earth. Uhm, looks like Bugs would come in handy right about now for my laptop! I’m not even sure what Vista update this is called but it was a rather lengthy process – like 8 updates in all. I thought, boy it’ll be like having a new computer after all those updates – it should run like a fine tuned racing machine now! Well, after the updates my computer ran more like a horseless carriage – complete with the hand-crank ignition! Once I turned the computer back on, it went directly to safe mode, which is not a good sign. The computer didn’t even recognize me. What? After all this time we’ve spent together! How rude! I got the “user profile service failed” message (without the nasally tone) each time I clicked on my user icon. “Sorry, but you don’t exist anymore on this computer, I hate you, go eat dirt!” Ok, maybe I threw that line in there but that’s what it felt like.
Luckily, I still have my old ancient desktop computer, which I have affectionately named “Big Bertha”, which runs XP, to search the Internet for a cure for my laptop. It takes 10 minutes to fire up but that old clunker has saved me about 4 times now with the untimely deaths and illnesses of other “sexier” laptops. Now I’m not sure if this is the only way, or the best way to get back to speaking terms with your unresponding laptop, but here we go:
1. Fire up your computer and hit F8 as soon as the system turns on.
2. Choose SAFE MODE and hit enter.
3. Once you’re in safe mode click on the start button and type in “SYSTEM RESTORE” – without the quotes and go up on the menu where it appears and select it.
4. Just follow the instructions from there. Windows should tell you the recommended action – like restoring the computer to before the update!
After that I would suggest turning off Automatic Updates until you find out it’s safe to install any new ones. Sometimes programs and drivers installed on your computer will be incompatible with an update – you just never know!
I would also suggest backing up your important files on a CD or DVD often. I can’t stress that enough!