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Panic time! Panic time!

(Windows XP) Norton Antivirus and email on my new HP computer were malfunctioning all afternoon. After being on the phone for two hours with Earthlink tech reps (they are generally really sharp), they concluded that something was wrong with the Norton Antivirus program which caused malfunctions with the email. They did what they could and suggested that I call the HP folks.

So I did. Now three more hours later, after they had me disable some start-up functions (but not delete them, they say) in my new computer, Microsoft Outlook Express is totally wiped out. Who knows where the addresses and new file folders are that I painstakingly created. What they did also wiped out several applications I had installed, and when I attempted to reload the entire Microsoft Office Suite, it either wouldn't work or I am truly too hysterical to get it to install. I am unglued.

If you cannot come by to fix this really soon, I'm considering returning this new computer to Best Buy and telling them what they can do with it. Frankly, I might suggest they bend over because that would be a good place to put the new computer (if I don't smash it to pieces before I get it repacked into its box).

Before I get violent, can you tell me when you might come by? If you cannot come by really soon, I understand. That will lead me to Plan B -- letting my engineer friend loose on the new computer. I figure that if I am going to return it anyway, what real harm can he do? He might even fix it, and it can't get worse.

I am now 35 hours behind in my work and am exhausted and hysterical.

Sorry for the high drama, but I've hit the wall and can't deal with this anymore.

There's no sense panicking.

The first and best defense you have against problems like this is a complete system backup. Click here for more information on backing up your computer.

Second, recognize that with Windows XP, most of your data files are contained in the "Documents and Settings" folder. As long as that's not wiped out, there's good reason to believe all your files are intact, even if not readily accessible.

Third, setting Windows Restore Points (Start / Run All Programs / Accessories / System Tools / System Restore / Create a Restore Point) as you go is a good idea, especially as you configure a brand-new computer. If you take frequent "snapshots" of the settings, you can easily go back a step or two if things go haywire.

And fourth, involve us early in the game. We'll back up everything first, then proceed carefully and according to your wishes. That way when it all goes to hell, you can blame us. ;>}

panic-time.shtml     |     Updated Wednesday, November 8, 2006
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