Account FAQ

When you register for an account at PC Pitstop, you can save your computer results in our database for later review. This lets you compare results from two systems, see the performance of a single computer over time, or show your results to other users. Your email address and password identify your account uniquely; although we ask for your first and last name it is only used for display purposes. Also see our privacy policy.

Please Note: This FAQ applies to your account at our main site. There is a separate registration for our support forums at If you have questions about that registration or are receiving notification emails from the forums, please go there to change your options.

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How is my email address being used?

We send out three types of email messages, you can opt out of the first two by editing your account options. If you have questions about how email addresses and other account information is used, see our privacy policy.

  1. Newsletter: Sent infrequently (no more than monthly) to notify users of new site features and important updates.
  2. Recalls: When vendors announce safety or reliability recalls and we can determine that a PC you tested may be affected, we can notify you.
  3. Administrative: When you register, we send a welcome message with your registration data. We may also notify you if we plan to remove the account due to inactivity.

The only way an account is created at PC Pitstop is if a user visits the site and creates one. If you do not recall having created an account, it is possible that someone used your email address without your permission. Since you can read email at that address you can remove the account by having the password sent to you; see the instructions below.

How do I remove my email address from your list?

To change your newsletter and product recall options, edit your account. To eliminate all mailings, remove your account (see below). When you remove your account, we do not keep a permanent record of your email address. However, there is a small window of time (typically less than 48 hours) in which you may receive a mailing because of the way we pull email addresses from the database in preparation for mailings.

In most cases, you can opt out of the newsletter mailing list simply by replying to the newsletter message with the subject of “remove”; this shortcut will only work if the email address in your mail client exactly matches the email address that you registered with PC Pitstop.

How do I change my account settings or email address?

Go to the Edit Your Account page; you may need to log in. (If you do not know your password, click here and we will email it to you.) Make the changes you would like to your email address, password, newsletter preferences, or other data, and click Submit. If you changed your email address or password, click the “Log Out” link under your name and log back in with your new information.

What if I forget my password?

Try logging in anyway by entering your email address, and guess your password. (It must be at least six characters.) If you guess it wrong, we offer you a link to have your password emailed to you. Click on that link and wait for your password to arrive. If your account’s email address was incorrect or your ISP blocks our email, our privacy policy does not permit us to give out your password because we have no way to verify that you are the rightful owner of the account. In those cases you should create a new account with a different email address.

I log in, but on the next page I’m not logged in. Why?

Your computer is not accepting session cookies. Our site is accepting your user name and password and creating a session to remember your results, but your computer is not returning the cookie that identifies your session. This may be because of your browser settings or because you are using a third-party browser or security program that is blocking cookies. See our Cookie FAQ for more help.

Why does PC Pitstop say my email address is not valid?

Note: We remove accounts with invalid emails about every 30 days. This will permanently delete any results you saved, so please keep your email address up to date.

When you create or update your account, we send a reminder message to the email address you are using. If that message is returned to us as undeliverable, we flag the account and you will see a message about the problem when you log into the site. Here are some common reasons why an email address is marked invalid:

  • You have entered it incorrectly. Double-check the address.
  • You are using an anti-spam product such as MailWasher that sends back “undeliverable” notices on messages that it considers spam. Disable the product temporarily or add to an exceptions list.
  • You are using an anti-spam service that requires the sender to respond to a challenge message before the mail goes through. Our automated mail agent cannot respond to these messages.
  • Your ISP or mail service is returning the mail because it is thought to be spam. Check the company’s support site to see if you can modify the settings. If possible, add to your whitelist (“friends list”) so that the mail can get through.
  • Your mailbox is full, and your mail service is returning the mail. Go to the inbox and read or delete enough messages to make some room.

When you come to the site and receive a message on the testing page that says your email address is invalid, click the “Change Login” link under your name. Double-check the email address, make any required changes, click the “Change Account Info” button, and we will re-verify the address. (If you think the email address is valid, just resubmit it; you don’t have to actually change any information.) If you are consistently unable to use your email address to receive mail from us, we suggest you sign up for a free mail account from a site such as Hotmail or Yahoo.

Note that we do not mark an email address invalid unless we receive a reply that indicates there was a problem delivering the email. Mail sent to the reply address is processed by a program and not read by the staff. For that reason, do not try to use your email program’s Reply function to reply to an automated message or newsletter sent by PC Pitstop, because the program may misinterpret your reply as a non-delivery notice.

Why does PC Pitstop say I am an “Unknown User”?

If you receive the message “Unknown user” when you try to log in, this indicates we do not currently have an account for the given email address. (Please note that the support forums have their own separate registration; you are not automatically registered in both places.) If you are sure that you have registered on the main site before with this email address, the account may have been deleted for one of these reasons:

  • Inactivity: The account has not been used for more than three months.
  • Bad email: Messages to the email address of a new account were returned undeliverable, and the problem was not corrected within a month.

If your account has been deleted, simply create a new one with the same email address. To ensure that the account isn’t deleted, stay active on the site by testing your system and checking your email address at least once a month.

How do I remove my account?

To permanently remove your account and results from the PC Pitstop database, go to the Edit Your Account page. If you aren’t already logged in, use your email address and password to log in. (If you do not know your password, click here and we will email it to you.) Click the link and use the Delete Account button at the bottom of the form. You will be required to provide your password.

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