Computer FAQ

Common questions about computers and our answers to them.

Remember to submit more of your questions for us to answer! We will update all FAQ pages periodically.

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1. Why is my computer so slow?

Slow computers are generally caused by having too many programs running at the same time. This can be fixed by closing some programs that are running or restarting the computer. In rare cases, slowness can be caused by the age of the computer as well and one may need to purchase a new computer.

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2. Why can't I change the formatting on my word document?

Highlight the part of the text that you want to reformat. Select "clear formatting". After clearing teh text formatting, you should then be allowed to format the text in any way you want. 

3. How do I move files onto my USB drive?
 

Windows: First, open the location of the files you want to move in the File Explorer. Then, open another File Explorer window and click on your USB (names vary but usually have the letters USB). Then, drag the file from the file window to the USB window.

Mac: First, open the location of the files you want to move in the Finder. Locate your USB (names vary but usually have the letters USB) in the "Locations" menu on the left of the Finder window. Then, drag the files to the USB in the "Locations" menu.

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Keyboard

4. What are some basic keyboard commands?
 

Windows PC/laptop

copy: ctrl (control) +c

paste: ctrl+v

undo: ctrl+z

redo: ctrl+y

save: ctrl+s

Mac

copy: cmd (command ⌘)+c

paste: cmd+v

undo: cmd+z

redo: cmd+y

save: cmd+s

5. Why does my computer not turn on?
 

Common reasons for computers not turning on: include:

  • Dead batteries

  • Liquid or other hardware damage
  • Not plugged into power source/plugged into power source improperly

 

How to fix this: 

  • Verify that computer is plugged in and charging

  • Long press power button to boot up computer which may be shut down

  • If there is liquid or hardware damage, bring it to a store to fix or buy a new computer.

*WARNING: if you are not a computer or IT professional, do not attempt to disassemble and fix your device on your own.**

Electronic Circuit
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6. Why is my computer crashing?
 

There are many reasons a computer could crash. These include having too many programs running, a software error, or even a hardware error. However, a crashed computer is usually fixable by restarting it.

Windows restarting shortcut: hold down ctrl+alt+delete at the same time and wait for the computer to restart.

Mac restarting shortcut: hold down control+command_power button at the same time and wait for the computer to restart.

If restarting your computer doesn't help, you may have a hardware issue. Bring your computer to a certified repair/service location and have it fixed.

**WARNING: if you are not a computer or IT professional, do not attempt to disassemble and fix your device on your own.**

7. Why does my monitor not display anything?
 

This is usually caused by the display not being properly connected to either the computer or a power source. Verify that the HDMI cable connected to the display is plugged into the computer and that the computer and display are plugged into power sources. 

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Keyboard and Mouse

8. Why does my mouse/keyboard not respond or respond incorrectly?
 

This can be caused by the mouse/keyboard either not being connected or plugged in properly, having dead batteries (with battery-powered accessories), or dirty or damaged hardware on the mouse or keyboard. Verify that the accessory is connected properly to both the computer and/or a power source, has charge (for battery-powered accessories), and that sensors and other parts are clean (to clean use a lint-free microfiber cloth or a soft cloth dampened with a cleaning solution).

9. How do I recover a file I accidentally deleted?
 

On most operating systems, files stay in trash for at most 30 days before they are automatically permanently deleted, so if your file has been in trash for more than 30 days and is automatically deleted, it is essentially unrecoverable.

However if the file has been deleted for less than 30 days, you can recover it.

Windows: open the Recycling Bin and find the file you want to recover. Right click on the file and select "restore". If you want to restore all files in the Recycling Bin select "restore all"

Mac: open Trash and find the file you want to recover. Right click on the file and select "put back".

Garbage Truck
Keyboard

4. What are some basic keyboard commands?
 

Windows PC/laptop

copy: ctrl (control) +c

paste: ctrl+v

undo: ctrl+z

redo: ctrl+y

save: ctrl+s

Mac

copy: cmd (command ⌘)+c

paste: cmd+v

undo: cmd+z

redo: cmd+y

save: cmd+s

Keyboard

4. What are some basic keyboard commands?
 

Windows PC/laptop

copy: ctrl (control) +c

paste: ctrl+v

undo: ctrl+z

redo: ctrl+y

save: ctrl+s

Mac

copy: cmd (command ⌘)+c

paste: cmd+v

undo: cmd+z

redo: cmd+y

save: cmd+s

Keyboard

4. What are some basic keyboard commands?
 

Windows PC/laptop

copy: ctrl (control) +c

paste: ctrl+v

undo: ctrl+z

redo: ctrl+y

save: ctrl+s

Mac

copy: cmd (command ⌘)+c

paste: cmd+v

undo: cmd+z

redo: cmd+y

save: cmd+s

Keyboard

4. What are some basic keyboard commands?
 

Windows PC/laptop

copy: ctrl (control) +c

paste: ctrl+v

undo: ctrl+z

redo: ctrl+y

save: ctrl+s

Mac

copy: cmd (command ⌘)+c

paste: cmd+v

undo: cmd+z

redo: cmd+y

save: cmd+s

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10. What is Google Workspace (previously known as GSuite) and how to I use it?
 

Google Workspace is a group of free services Google provides with a Google account. Google Workspace has a few core features such as Google Sheets and Docs. These allow you to create spreadsheets and type papers. There are also many other features such as Google Slides and Google Drawings, etc which allow you to create many types of media. The most central aspect is Google Drive. This acts a cloud storage area for all your documents, pictures, etc. As of June 2021, you have 15GB of free storage in Google Drive and will need to upgrade to a Google One plan to get more storage.