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Disabling cookies won't stop pop-up ads


© St. Petersburg Times, published September 25, 2000

Q: After disabling cookies on Windows 98, I still receive annoying solicitations/advertisements while I am surfing the Web.

A: Disabling cookies alone will not stop these annoyances. There are some shareware/freeware programs that claim to do this, but judging from feedback I receive from this column, they cause more problems than they solve. However, if you want to check them out, you can find various "pop-up preventer" programs at these Web sites:

xFX JumpStart (

AdFilter (

BuyPin Software (

JunkBusters (

InterMute (

Video adapter troubles

Q: When I start my computer I get a "No Signal" as it boots up, and then it won't boot to Windows. I sometimes have to hit reset several times before it boots to Windows.

A: It sounds as if the video adapter is not sending its signal in time to be recognized by the motherboard. Sometimes this is a problem if the CPU is being overclocked. You also can try reseating the video adapter, or try to move it to another slot if available. Also check with the motherboard manufacturer to make sure you have the latest BIOS version.

Silent sound card

Q: I have a problem that pertains to a CMI8330 sound card. When I went into the program I found that 3-D, along with the loudness and mixer, was not on. I turned them on. But when receiving a file, the computer tells me the sound card is not available.

A: It sounds like a driver problem. Check C-Media's Web site ( for a list of updated drivers.

Uninstalling software

Q: I tried to install the new Windows Me, but a message tells me to remove Black Ice, my firewall. I did, but some files still appear in the Remove/Add window. If I click to remove, it says it can't find blackice.exe. How do I remove this program? I thought maybe I should try through RegEdit HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\NETWORK ICE\BLACK ICE\, but I don't know how.

A: Of course the first attempt to delete/remove a program from a PC always should be done through Control Panel's Add/Remove Programs function. The completeness to which this is accomplished is determined by the applications' uninstall settings provided by the application vendor, not necessarily Microsoft. So, if this is how you tried to uninstall Black Ice and it didn't work, your first line of support should be from Black Ice. I would call and ask for more complete uninstall procedures.

The registry location HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall contains the installed applications that you see listed through Add/Remove Programs, along with their respective uninstall command. Applications that have had incomplete uninstalls can be deleted here. Of course this should be a last resort and, as always, make a backup of your registry before making modifications.

Gobbling up system resources

Q: When I run, a site for stock quotes, it consumes all my system resources in two or three hours. If I don't close this program, the screen will freeze. I have to close it and reopen to bring it back to life. suggested I upgrade to Window 98.

A: Since the live chart runs from within Internet Explorer as a Java applet, it is most like Internet Explorer/Java runtime-environment related, not necessarily a Windows 95 versus 98 issue. You didn't mention which version of Microsoft Internet Explorer you run. The latest version is 5.5. You should try updating to this version (or at least version 5.0). This may solve your problem. It's possible this may be a video driver problem. Check your current driver version and video adapter (Control Panel, Display, Settings, Advanced). Then check the adapter's Web site to make sure you have the latest drivers. If not, download and update from there.

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