Why Do I Need to Unplug and Plug in my USB Device to Keep It Working?

//
I have a year and a half old Dell XPS Desktop running Windows 7 (which is kept updated) that has no PS2 ports. I have a monitor with a built-in USB hub (where the hub has its own power supply). I also have a PS2 keyboard and PS2 trackball, both of which I love and want very much to keep using. When I got this new Dell, I got a PS2-to-USB “Y”-adapter and plugged it into the monitor’s USB hub. Everything worked well for over a year – except that maybe once a week or two, they stopped responding with the computer wake up and I had to unplug and replug the USB plug.

This would solve the problem for another week or two. About a month ago, this issue suddenly became not just a daily problem, but even needed doing every five to ten minutes or so. The power supply to the monitor’s USB hub seems to be fine and the other USB functions seem to work fine as well. I’ve re-routed my PS2 USB cord directly to the computer’s USB port and this solved the five-to-ten minute problem, but I still need to unplug and replug the USB plug every day when I wake the computer up. And yes, I reboot regularly, which has had no effect or improvement on the issue. What do you think?

The problem that you’re experiencing is not uncommon. You tried a couple of things that I would normally recommend, but I can think of a few more that might help you in this scenario.

Read moreWhy Do I Need to Unplug and Plug in my USB Device to Keep It Working?

Can I Use an External Keyboard with My Laptop?

//
I just got a new Lenovo laptop and I’m having the darnedest time typing on it. I’m upgrading from a PC. I used to use this wonderful Windows ergonomic keyboard, which I loved and cherished. I had no issues or problems and I knew where everything was. With all of these newly built laptops now, I’m forced to keep my palms straight and elbows in. I can’t stand it. I constantly miss keys, touching the middle pad thingy. I’m constantly misspelling words, going back and backspacing words because I’ve hit the Enter key instead of the Shift key, cursing like mad. I’m going insane. Is there any way that I can just plug my old ergonomic keyboard back into the USB port, slap cardboard over the laptop keyboard, and go about my regular carefree life? Please say there’s a way!

I feel your pain. My dissatisfaction with the keyboard on my Microsoft Surface prevents me from using it more. It’s not a bad keyboard. I’m sure that it works well for most people. It’s just not particularly suited for my large hands and fat fingers.

Read moreCan I Use an External Keyboard with My Laptop?

I spilled water into my laptop, how do I get it working again?

//

While I was asleep, my cat must have tipped over a part full cup of water on my new laptop computer. The computer lid was closed and the AC power cord was connected when my daughter tried to turn it on in the morning. It did not turn on (and it hasn’t ever since, even after leaving it to dry out for a couple of weeks). There was also a small pool of water under the computer (about 5cm in diameter) and drips of water come from the keyboard when tipped over. What should I do to maximize my chances of getting it working?

I’m going to recommend an obscure long shot as something to try.

I’m also going to ask for help.

Read moreI spilled water into my laptop, how do I get it working again?

Why Do I Have to Hold Down the “Fn” Key to Get Normal Letters?

//

As i type right now, i have to hold down the “Fn” key just to get normal letters. I don’t know how it happened, but I’m on a laptop and the only way for me to get the “u,i,o,l,;,k,j,m,7,9,0,/,p” keys are to hold down the “Fn” key. It is purple on the lower left of my internal keyboard.

One of the compromises laptop manufacturers had to make to support a full-sized keyboard into the space of a laptop is the numeric keypad most keyboards have. What they’ve done is overlaid it “on top” of the regular alpha numeric keyboard.

The trick, of course, is noticing it, and then turning it on — or in your case, off.

Read moreWhy Do I Have to Hold Down the “Fn” Key to Get Normal Letters?

Help! My Shift key is stuck!

//

Help! My Shift key is stuck!

Have you ever gotten so frustrated with your computer that you just start randomly pounding on the keyboard or perhaps a particular key?

Yeah, me too.

And that’s likely the source of the problem here. No, Windows isn’t getting even with you, though it might seem that way. It actually thinks you’ve asked it to do something.

Read moreHelp! My Shift key is stuck!