Frequently Asked Questions

When I try and turn on my computer nothing happens - what do i do now?

  1. Wait a moment. Try your power button again, pressing firmly on the button.
  2. Check the power cable coming into the back of the PC from the outlet or power strip. Make certain the cable is firmly seated. Retry the power button.
  3. Check other devices that may be plugged into the power strip or wall outlet to see if they have power. If so, try swapping the power cable plug for the PC into another outlet you know is working. Try the power button again.


When I turn my PC on, I hear my PC making noises when I turn it on, but I have no picture?

  1. Make certain the monitor is turned on, and that the cable running between the PC and the monitor is firmly seated. If there is a separate power cord, check that it is firmly connected to a live power source as well.
  2. Check to see if the monitor (screen) has either a green or amber/orange light on it. If so is that light solid or blinking.
  3. If you have checked this, call the helpdesk explain that you have checked the cable.


What do I do if my computer freezes, and the mouse is not responding?

  1. In many application programs, the Escape (or Esc) key is a general-purpose "get me out of here" key-used to cancel or back up a step in the current operation.
  2. If the Escape key doesn't solve your problem, you can try the Break key. On most keyboards, either the Scroll Lock or Pause key doubles as a Break key. (You should see the word Break either on top of the key or on its front edge. If you don't find Break on either key, you can use Scroll Lock for this purpose.) By itself, Break does nothing, but holding down a Ctrl key and pressing this key will interrupt some programs or commands. This key combination is referred to as Ctrl+Break (pronounced "Control Break").
  3. If neither of the preceding techniques works, you can reboot your computer by holding down the Ctrl and Alt keys and then tapping the Del key. Rebooting erases memory and reloads the operating system; you lose any data currently in memory. In some programs, you may damage data as well, so only use this key combination when you can't think of any other solution. Although fairly drastic, rebooting is still a bit safer than the next two options.
  4. Many PCs have a Reset button that lets you restart your computer without actually flicking the power switch. The main power to the computer's components is not interrupted. This saves wear and tear. (Some, but not all, Reset buttons are actually labeled Reset. If you can't find yours, check in the documentation for your computer.)


What do I do when all of a sudden my mouse stops working? I see the cursor, but the mouse doesn't move the cursor?

The connection at the back of your computer to your mouse might have come loose, or something caused the software driver for the mouse to hang, or stop responding. The best thing to do is to close all of the programs that you are working on using the keyboard and restart the computer. The key combination is the Alt key and the F4 key; simply hold down the Alt key and press F4 to close what you are working on. Then hold down the Ctrl key and press the Esc key to have the Start Menu pop up. Press the U key to get the shutdown command to activate and hit the Enter key to shutdown or restart the machine. Assuming your connection in the back of the computer is tight, and then your mouse should work again once you have restarted the computer.

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