Month: February 2017

Today, February 28, 2017, Large Internet Outage

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If you had some issues today with your internet connection either being slow or not connecting/working at all, it was more than likely due to the fact that Amazon had an outage with their S3 Web Services.

If you are interested in reading more about this, here are a couple of links:


Business Insider

At this point in time, Amazon is announcing that everything is working nominally at their end.

Windows 7 Updates Won’t Work or are Terribly Slow

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For those of you who have older hardware and are sticking with Windows 7, this may help you out if you ever re-image/start over with your computer or just can’t get Windows 7 Updates to install/work anymore.

One of the main causes of this is that the new Microsoft update process requires the latest version of .NET Framework to be installed.  This is one of those chicken/egg problems as eventually the update process will install the proper version, but typically, the update process slows down or even errors out before this can get installed.

Now the other issue, is that you will need Windows 7 SP1 installed before you can install the updated .NET Framework.  You can use the following link to get SP1 (as well as any troubleshooting you may need in order to get this installed):

Install Windows 7 Service Pack 1 (SP1)

At the time of this post, the latest install for Microsoft .NET offline install for Windows 7 can be downloaded through the following link:

Microsoft .NET Framework 4.6.2 (Offline Installer) for Windows 7 SP1

Please also note that .NET Framework can be a large download as well as a long install.  Don’t worry if your system reboots at least once during the process.

Cannot Delete a Storage Pool Because it is Read Only

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One of the great things about later versions of Windows is the addition of Storage Pools.  I use them almost exclusively now instead of hardware RAID.  In so doing, I tend to ‘play’ often and reuse hard drives from different pools and inevitably, run into this error as the hard drive will report that it is still a part of a now defunct storage pool.  There are times when I go to delete or erase a disk and I get the following error “Error deleting virtual disk: The storage pool could not complete the operation because its configuration is read-only”.  This is rather easy to fix with PowerShell commands.

From the PowerShell prompt, type in
PS C:\>Get-StoragePool to retrieve a list of all storage pools.
Make note of the ‘FriendlyName’ of the Pool that you need to work with – I will use ‘Pool1’ as an example.
Now run
PS C:\>Get-StoragePool -FriendlyName "Pool1" | Set-StoragePool -IsReadOnly $false
If you are sure you have the right Pool, then you can now delete the StoragePool using the following command:
PS C:\>Get-StoragePool -FriendlyName "Pool1" | Remove-StoragePool
This will detach the hard drive from it’s old StoragePool and allow you to erase/delete it.

Good way to Free up Storage Space

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There are many reasons why you may be running out of storage space, especially on your boot or Drive C: hard drive.  Here is a good way of cleaning things up.

In Windows 10, click the Windows start button and type in 'cleanup' to automatically search your system.  At the top, the 'Disk Cleanup' app should appear. Click on this to start the process.  You should be asked to select which drive if you have more than one drive in your system:

Select the appropriate drive which should be (C:) and then click the OK button to start the scan.








Once the scan completes, you should be presented with the Disk Cleanup app.If you have upgraded your operating system and do not wish to go back, click on the 'Clean up system files' button.

Click the OK button to add these extra files.  Once the form comes back up, select all of the files that you wish to Delete including any temporary files and troubleshooting files.

Click the OK button again and let the process free up some of that space on your hard drive.

Windows 10 File Explorer won’t launch

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I have run into this one quite a bit lately, specially on systems that open numerous files daily. If you go to open Windows Explorer and it either does not run or crashed, this will probably fix the issue for you. The biggest issue is to get to an Explorer window to disable the issue.
First thing to try is the following:

  1. Right click on the File Explorer icon on the task bar and choose 'Unpin from Taskbar'.
  2. Press the 'Windows' key and the 'X' key at the same time, then select 'File Explorer' from the list.
  3. Right click the 'Quick Access' link and select 'Options'.
  4. Under the 'General' tab, choose 'Clear' in the 'Privacy‘ section.  This will help clear the File Explorer history.
  5. If you don’t want to have to do this in the future and you don’t care about seeing a list of previously opened files, you can change the option at the top 'Open File Explorer to:' from 'Quick Access' to 'This PC'.
  6. Click the 'OK' button to close the form.
  7. Right click on any blank spot on your desktop and choose 'New > Shortcut'.
  8. Type in 'C:\Windows\Explorer.exe' and then click 'Next'.
  9. Rename the shortcut to 'File Explorer' and then click 'Finish'.
  10. Right click the newly created short cut and choose 'Pin to Task Bar'.

You should be all good to go at this point.