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It's Never Done That Before: A Guide to Troubleshooting Windows XP Paperback – July 3, 2006

ISBN-13: 978-1593271398 ISBN-10: 1593271395 Edition: 1st
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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Do some Windows XP problems make you scratch your head in wonder? Has an application suddenly chosen not to start or a piece of hardware simply stopped working? Ever had the Internet "disappear" or been faced with a Blue or Black Screen of Death? Do the neighbors call you to fix their machines when you'd really prefer to hand them a book so they can solve their own problems?

If you know enough about computers to use one but not always enough to fix those unexpected Windows problems, It's Never Done That Before! is the book for you. It gives you:

• Troubleshooting techniques and tips for solving common XP problems
• Strategies for finding and fixing obscure It's Never Done That Before! Problems
• Hints for troubleshooting BIOS beep codes and Blue Screen errors
• Help with XP's troubleshooting tools (such as Safe Mode and the Recovery Console)
• Survival strategies for wrangling device drivers, the BIOS, and the Windows Registry
• Techniques for dealing with viruses, spyware, and Internet problems
• Advice for getting the most out of the Microsoft Knowledge Base and other online resources, plus tips for dealing with technical support

Got Windows problems? You're not alone. Reach for It's Never Done That Before!—the lifeline you'll grab when your computer does something you didn't expect it to do.

About the Author

John Ross has worked as a consultant on wired and wireless networking for several manufacturers, including Motorola and AT&T. He is the author of more than two dozen books, including Internet Power Tools (Random House), Connecting with Windows (Sybex), Wiring Home Networks (Sunset Books), and The Book of Wireless (No Starch Press).


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 280 pages
  • Publisher: No Starch Press; 1 edition (July 3, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1593271395
  • ISBN-13: 978-1593271398
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.8 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,474,636 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Thomas Duff HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on July 4, 2006
Format: Paperback
I can think of a number of times over the past few years I could have used this book... It's Never Done That Before! - A Guide To Troubleshooting Windows XP by John Ross. This is a solid volume on figuring out what just happened to your computer...

Contents: Troubleshooting Methods and Tools; Types of Windows Problems and Failures; What to Do When Windows Won't Start; Black Screens and Blue Screens; Solving Device Driver Problems; Using the Microsoft Knowledge Base and Other Online Resources; Using System Restore and Other Rollback Techniques; Underneath It All - The BIOS; The Windows Registry - Here Be Demons; Dealing with Individual Programs and Files; Service Packs, Patches, and Other Updates; Viruses, Spyware, and Other Nasties; Internet Connection Problems; Local Network Problems; Dealing with Hardware Problems; Troubleshooting and Replacing Hard Drives; Troubleshooting and Replacing Other Hardware; If All Else Fails... Call Tech Support; Cutting Your Losses - What to Do When Nothing Else Works; Things to Do Now, Before Your Computer Crashes; Device Manager Error Codes and BIOS POST Beep Codes; Free and Inexpensive Security Programs for Windows XP; Index

The nice thing about this book is that it's completely focused on fixing problems. It's not just an add-on to a larger book on how Windows works. As such, you end up getting much more troubleshooting detail that you might see in other books. Ross writes in a conversational style, so you end up with information that doesn't intimidate at the same point in time that you're already stressed out to start with. Even better, it's enjoyable enough to read *before* you end up with problems that bring your computer to it's knees.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Harold McFarland HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on September 24, 2006
Format: Paperback
What a great book title and if you've worked with Windows XP you are sure to have heard it or thought it many times. If you are tired of the strange things that Windows XP does at the most inopportune times then this text is for you. If you are not already a power user with good technical skills at troubleshooting Windows problems but are not afraid to try things yourself then you will find this book one of the best places to start when you have problems.

The author starts with the basics of troubleshooting including common problems, black screens, blue screens, error messages, startup problems, safe mode, and recovery console. From there he then looks at the all too common device driver problems, using the Microsoft knowledge base, and working with the BIOS and registry.

Of course those are just one the many different types of problems that may occur. John Ross also examines other types of problems that may be introduced from the outside including things like viruses and spyware. Each of these subjects is examined and the author details how they affect your system as well as what to do to get rid of the most common ones. Of course the all too common network problems including Internet connections as well as LAN problems are covered as well.

The book ends with a section on troubleshooting and replacing hardware. This text is too basic for the power user but hits the target very well for the new or average user who is unafraid to try to fix problems their self. It's Never Done That Before is a recommended read as a good first level resource for the home user.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on July 2, 2006
Format: Paperback
If you're frustrated with Windows XP, turn to John Ross' It's Never Done That Before! before calling in the techs. Chapters offer plenty of troubleshooting techniques and tips for resolving common XP programs and many an obscure detail as well. From using XP's built-in troubleshooting tools to handling problems with device drivers and even registry issues and viruses, reach for this before the telephone when troubleshooting: it'll save you a bundle.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By T. Gough on November 12, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book covers the really weird stuff that can happen and has information that I could find nowhere else. When bad stuff happens on XP this is where I go for the answers. T.Gough
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