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18 Quick Reference Guide
BACK UP YOUR FILES IMMEDIATELY.
SE A VIRUS-SCANNING PROGRAM TO CHECK THE HARD DRIVE, FLOPPY DISKS, OR CDS.
AVE AND CLOSE ANY OPEN FILES OR PROGRAMS AND SHUT DOWN YOUR COMPUTER THROUGH THE START
CAN THE COMPUTER FOR SPYWARE — If you are experiencing slow computer performance, you frequently
receive pop-up advertisements, or you are having problems connecting to the Internet, your computer
might be infected with spyware. Use an anti-virus program that includes anti-spyware protection (your
program may require an upgrade) to scan the computer and remove spyware. For more information, go to
support.dell.com and search for the keyword spyware.
RUN THE DELL DIAGNOSTICS — See "Dell Diagnostics" on page 18. If all tests run successfully, the error
condition is related to a software problem.
CAUTION: Before you begin any of the procedures in this section, follow the safety instructions in the Product
When to Use the Dell Diagnostics
If you experience a problem with your computer, perform the checks in "Lockups and Software
Problems" on page 16 and run the Dell Diagnostics before you contact Dell for technical assistance.
It is recommended that you print these procedures before you begin.
NOTICE: The Dell Diagnostics works only on Dell™ computers.
NOTE: The Drivers and Utilities CD is optional and may not ship with your computer.
Start the Dell Diagnostics from either your hard drive or from the Drivers and Utilities CD (also known
as the ResourceCD).
Starting the Dell Diagnostics From Your Hard Drive
The Dell Diagnostics is located on a hidden diagnostic utility partition on your hard drive.
NOTE: If your computer cannot display a screen image, contact Dell (see "Contacting Dell" in your User’s Guide).
Shut down the computer.
If the computer is connected to a docking device (docked), undock it. See the documentation that
came with your docking device for instructions.
Connect the computer to an electrical outlet.
Diagnostics can be invoked one of two ways:
Turn on the computer. When the DELL™ logo appears, press <F12> immediately. Select
Diagnostics from the boot menu and press <Enter>.
NOTE: If you wait too long and the operating system logo appears, continue to wait until you see the
desktop. Then shut down your computer and try again.