Category: Hardware


I had an older but still good computer with two internal hard drives: an old Western Digital Green hard drive and a newer WD Black hard drive. The Green drive had the page file and important backup files. This being Windows 7, it had a full system backup on the WD Green and a Quickbooks backup. The computer kept giving the blue screen error 0x0000007a KERNEL_DATA_INPAGE_ERROR, which according to Microsoft is caused by bad hardware or bad RAM. So my first thought was the WD Green drive was bad because, again from Microsoft, the blue screen “indicates that the requested page of kernel data from the paging file could not be read into memory.” Since the page file was on the old WD Green drive and since Windows had trouble reading the page file, it must be that drive or bad RAM.

Turns out, there were 3 causes of this blue screen. The WD Green drive was, in fact, bad. I put it in my computer and tested it to be sure, and it was bad. So I bought a SSD, shrank and cloned the WD Black drive to it, and repurposed the WD Black drive into what the WD Green drive was being used for. Except I put the page file on the SSD. After doing this, the same blue screen still appeared. So the second guess was bad memory. Which also, in fact, was defective as a memory test discovered. So I fixed that problem as well.

But the same blue screen kept appearing. I finally figured out the hard drive cable was bad. I replaced that cable and the machine hasn’t had a blue screen since. At the end of the day I concluded that while all the bad memory and bad hard drive did not help, it was not the root cause of the blue screen.

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I do not have a 4K UHD TV just yet, but I do have a 4K monitor. But I am curious as about all this. The goal is to play such movies on a PC, specifically a home theater PC. I may not ever do that, but I do need to know how. The programs to play such movies has yet to be released. UHD Blu-Rays require much more space than traditional Blu-Rays discs. A HD movie can fit on a 50 GB Blu-Ray disc just fine. This means you need a certain Blu-Ray drive.

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Many of my customers are confused about the various cable standards. This blog post will explain in just a little detail what each cable standard is and what is the purpose of it. But it will only deal with external cables, not the ones inside your computer.

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I currently own the Asus RT-AC66U router and I love it. I’ve had it for over a year and it has been steady as a rock. But with this “cloud first, mobile first” (and customer last) philosophy of Microsoft, I was looking for a way to make my router block all that tracking that is in Windows 10 and trying to be in Windows 7 and 8. Block it at the router level and Microsoft can’t do a thing about it. According to Asus, the RT-AC66U router supports DD-WRT. This is a requirement. If your Asus router does not support DD-WRT, then this how-to will not help. Fortunately you don’t need to install DD-WRT. DD-WRT can a pain to install on a router. You do need to install the Merlin firmware, which you can download here.

This is an advanced how-to meant for more technical people.

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One of my customers had a server that would not boot.  In fact, it would turn off after about 20 to 30 seconds while the BIOS was initializing and then the red health light would flash. What was causing this was the backplane adapter that converted the SAS RAID hard drive controller to 5 SATA hard drives. I disconnected the SAS cable and the server did not shut down. After I let the BIOS finish, I then reconnected the SAS cable to the backplane and the server booted normally.

However, I did try other options. If you have a problem with your ProLiant server, try these additional solutions:

  • Find the system maintenance switch. These are tiny DIP switches somewhere on the motherboard. Flip switch 6, which is a switch to reset the configuration, and turn on the server.  The server case should have a diagram of where everything is at, be sure to double-check to see if switch 6 does this. Be sure to flip the switch back when done.
  • Remove the BIOS battery and unplug the server for 2 or 3 minutes to reset the BIOS to the default. Put the battery back in and start the server. If successful, put more memory in one at a time. If unsuccessful, put a different memory stick in and then keep trying.
  • Remove all the memory. Then put just one stick back in and see if the server boots. The memory may be under a heat shield, so be sure the put anything related to cooling back in the server.
  • Try all three of the above at the same time.
  • If none of these work, there is likely a more serious problem.