Ask a Windows Expert – Week 2


By Miguel Leiva-Gomez for

Q: My Computer Has a Blue Screen (BSOD) And It’s New, What Happened?

A: The first two things that come to mind:

  • Did the installed operating system come with your computer, or did you install your own? Try using the default operating system the computer came with.
  • Did you install any new drivers since you purchased the computer? Try booting in safe mode (press F8 just before Windows starts loading) and rolling back your drivers.
  • If you did neither, attempt to reinstall the operating system on the computer. If this doesn’t work, chances are that you were shipped a computer with faulty hardware. You must return it to the entity you bought it from for a replacement. They’ll understand. This kind of thing is not as rare as you might think it is.

    Q: I Can Get to All Sites Except One, And I Tried All Sorts of Browsers. What Do I Do?

    A: Usually, this isn’t a browser-related issue, so I’m afraid to say that the attempt was in vain. Windows has a DNS client service, which sometimes can cache the IP address of a website’s domain name. When that IP changes, it can still try to connect to the old IP erroneously. Another possibility is that your “hosts” file is faulty, and contains an old IP address for a particular domain name.

    Here’s the trick. Go to “C:\Windows\System32\drivers\etc” and right-click the “hosts” file you see there. Remember to replace “C” with your system drive’s drive letter and “Windows” with the Windows folder that pertains to your particular version of Windows. Open your “hosts” file with notepad and have a look at it. Do you see the website that wasn’t connecting? If you do, remove its entry in the file. Make sure you don’t delete anything else except the IP address (a sequence of four numbers separated by dots) and the domain name.

    If you really need the “hosts” file to have that DNS entry for some reason, hold the “Windows” key on your keyboard (next to either “Alt” key) and press “R.” Type “cmd” in that window and press “Enter.”

    Once in, type


    replacing “” with the domain name you want the IP address for. Type up the IP address you find under “Addresses” in “Non-Authoritative Answer” into your “hosts” file entry in place of the old IP address. That solves the problem. Here’s what your window should look like after a lookup:

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