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volume 6 number 1 january 2001 TipSheet

Welcome to the January issue of MicroMetric's TipSheet, the start of our sixth volume and a new millennium.

This monthly newsletter is targeted at addressing the needs of our customers.

This month we'll cover a potpourri of Tips.


Ever wonder how your request for a new web page in your browser is fullfilled? TRACERT is a DOS program that is supplied as part of Windows, and it allows tracing the route taken by a request from your computer to a site on the Internet. Click on Start, Programs, MS DOS Prompt. Then type TRACERT [web address] and press Enter. A hop by hop listing will be created, showing the individual servers contacted while locating the requested web site, along with the time required to respond to your request. So, the next time you don't seem to be able to connect to a site, try running TRACERT and you'll see the where the problem is.


System Configuration Utility (Msconfig.exe) automates the routine troubleshooting steps that Microsoft Technical Support engineers use when diagnosing issues with the Windows 98 configuration. This tool permits you to modify the system configuration through a process of elimination with check boxes, reducing the risk of typing errors previously associated with Notepad and System Configuration Editor.

System Configuration Utility also can create a backup copy of your system files before you begin a troubleshooting session. Create backup copies of your system files to ensure that the modifications made during your troubleshooting session can be reversed.

The utility allows selectively running all or parts of the boot-start routines, thereby zeroing in on startup problems. To run, click on Start, Rubn, andy type msconfig, the press Enter. A multi-tabbed dialog box will be displayed, which has help available.


A reader asks "I unknowingly press the CapsLock key sometimes, then have to correct what I've just typed. I recently read about ToggleKeys, one of Control Panel's Accessibility Options that's supposed to make your system beep when you press CapsLock, NumLock, or ScrollLock. After activating this feature, though, all I hear is an almost inaudible click when I press any of these keys. How can I make it louder?"

The solution is rather peculiar. Open a DOS window, navigate to your Windows folder and enter the command copy con winstart.bat, then press Enter. Type echo followed by a space, press Ctrl-G and press Enter. Then press Ctrl-Z and Enter. After you restart the computer, the key-toggle sounds will be audible. You may also hear an extra beep during Windows start-up. This solu tion is covered in the Microsoft Knowledge Base article Q191458, found at


A reader writes, "As many are aware, there is a problem with shutdown in Microsoft Windows 98 Second Edition. The problem is primarily a result of interactions between the Advanced Power Management system and the system BIOS. Microsoft has released a fix, but I simply chose to disable APM under the Device Manager tab in the System Properties dialog (accessed from the Control Panel). This does not seem to affect screen savers and Energy Star-compliant monitors. This is only a quick fix, though. Downloading and installing Microsoft's patch might be a more appropriate solution for some." A BIOS/APM interaction is actually just one of many possible sources of shut down problems in Windows 98, so disabling apm through Device Manager may not resolve the situation. If you're experiencing shutdown problems, study Microsoft Knowledge Base article Q238096, "How to Troubleshoot Windows 98 Second Edition Shutdown Problems," at This substantial article details many troubleshooting steps and also provides a link to a page where you can download the shutdown supplement, if all else fails.

Copyright 2001, MicroMetric, Inc., All Rights Reserved. Permission to copy in total, with this statement and copyright, is hereby granted.

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