Tech Talk #17 – Jan 23, 2016

White out

If you really drill down into the Personalization settings in Windows, you can really change the way Windows looks – wallpapers, themes, screen savers, and color schemes. You can change the color of the text on your screen, the color of your background, the color of the windows title bars, and lots more. If you play around with the settings for long enough, you can get yourself into trouble.


Let’s say you’ve changed your desktop, all of your windows and title bars, your backgrounds, and the text on your computer to be white. Of course, no one would do that on purpose. You’d never be able to see anything on your screen. Your desktop would be one white screen with white windows and white text and white buttons.


If this actually happened, it wouldn’t be hard to fix. Of course, since your desktop now looks like the inside of a snowman, this is going to take a while. The easiest way is to right-click anywhere on the desktop. Great! Now you’ve got a white window with white text open on a white background somewhere on your white desktop. From here it’s a matter of clicking in that window and trying to get the Personalization window open. Once you’ve got the Personalization window open, you’ll be doing some more guessing and clicking. It’ll take a while, and you’ll probably make many mistakes, but eventually you’ll get back to a normal color scheme.



Keyboard on vacation

If your keyboard suddenly stops putting anything on the screen, check the usual suspects – the batteries (for a wireless keyboard) or that it’s plugged in correctly. If your keyboard is still not working, try another keyboard. These steps will work 99.9% of the time. If a different keyboard doesn’t work, here’s what’s probably going on.


Windows has an Accessibility feature called Filter Keys that tells the keyboard to ignore brief or repeated keystrokes in order to make typing easier for users with hand tremors. Windows activates Filter Keys whenever the right Shift key is held down for more than eight seconds. Your cat might turn on Filter Keys while walking across your keyboard. Or you might set something down your keyboard. Or you might fall asleep at your desk and have a nice Enter key imprint on your cheek when you wake up. Whatever. To turn Filter Keys off, hold the right Shift key down for 20 seconds.




Advertising at its worst will be killed by the Internet. And rightly so.

Maurice Saatchi – Iraqi-British politician and advertising executive


Do you have a computer or technology question? Greg Cunningham has been providing Tehachapi with on-site PC and network services since 2007. Email Greg at                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Leave a comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.