• Sign in to Neowin Faster!

    Create an account on Neowin to contribute and support the site.

Sign in to follow this  

Power failure causes changes...how to fix

Recommended Posts

Tagaa    2

I use windows 7 Professional, 64 bit, on an HP desktop PC. I have a APC UPS providing backup power to the PC, monitor (Samsung 32" flat screen TV), router & fiber optic adapter, speakers, clock etc. I stream my TV from the US, and consequently have an HDMI cable out of the PC to my Onkyo, TX-NR737 audio/video amp, with my main TV, a 55" Samsung HD TV. I fire up the PC in the morning as my coffee is dripping & turn it off before going to bed. It is on 15 to 17 hours a day.

 

For some context, I live in Thailand & power outages are the norm. I usually experience a 3 to 7 second outage at least once a day, maybe more. This is the primary reason for the UPS. One to 3 times a week on average, we get power failures from 40 minutes to hours, depending on thunderstorms, wind storms, whatever. If I am awake when a long outage occurs, I give the power 10 minutes to come on & if it doesn't, I shut down the PC before the UPS battery runs down.

 

This morning early, just for grins, I did a new system restore point as everything is as I like it to be and all was working fine. About 11 AM, we had a 5 second power outage. My TV & Onkyo amp went black, but everything connected to the UPS stayed on as designed. When the power cam back on, the resolution of my monitor as well as my main TV had changed. Not a huge deal as I can go into Nvidia & change them back. The aggravating thing is that it also changed my system tray icon thumbnails to text, which I do not like. This is a very common problem & has happened more times than I can count. I'm 62 & I prefer to just see the large thumbnail rather than reading 2 or 3 lines of text to see which open page or screen I wish to choose.

 

If I try to go into control panel, system, advanced system settings, system properties, advanced & select the button for settings, the choices for enable windows aero & actually anything that begins with the letter E, such as enable thumbnails, are missing. Actually anything between "Animations in the taskbar & start menu" and "Fade or slide menus into view" has disappeared.  I have searched the www extensively for a solution to this problem & nothing seems to help & absolutely nothing brings back the advanced & settings list back to where it should be. An interesting note is that in a week or two, I will get another power failure as I did today & the settings menu will return to normal & thumbnails will reappear & text boxes will disappear.

 

I forgot to mention, after the power failure & the appearance of the undesirable text lines for open windows, I did a system restore, hoping the desired thumbnails would return & the advanced settings menu would return to normal. No Joy.

 

I would like to solve this problem once & for all & not have to deal with the tray icon text lines ever again.

 

Tagaa

Edited by Tagaa
additional info

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Xahid    5,324

Welcome to neowin, your way of description is interesting.

I guess your graphic driver is messed up, just uninstall it and reinstall the driver.

and also make sure you select "show thumbnail instead of icon" in the "Performance options"  (My computer =>Properties, Advance System Settings=>Adcance=>Settings=>Visual Effects)

like shows in the screen shot (its windows 10)

performance options.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tagaa    2

Yep... I have already uninstalled & reinstalled Nvidia with no effect and anything that relates to thumbnails is either already checked or the box to make the choice is missing.

 

Just curious...why is my description interesting? Not annoyed or anything, just curious. I gave as much information as I could so as to eliminate the posts that request more info. I tried to, as Barney Fife would say, nip that problem in the bud.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Mindovermaster    1,793
48 minutes ago, Tagaa said:

Just curious...why is my description interesting? Not annoyed or anything, just curious. I gave as much information as I could so as to eliminate the posts that request more info. I tried to, as Barney Fife would say, nip that problem in the bud.

I think he means that you gave a lot of information. Not many 1-posters give out that much information. ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Xahid    5,324

Can you post the screen shot? maybe you want to tell something else and I don't understand the exact problem.

2 minutes ago, Mindovermaster said:

I think he means that you gave a lot of information. Not many 1-posters give out that much information. ;)

Yea, its fairly detailed information.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tagaa    2

Thanks for that.

 

I can tell you that this ain't my first rodeo. I'm an intelligent guy that has the ability to think ahead, something I can assure you Thai people do not possess. I also try to spell correctly...something I don't see much of anymore.

 

Forgot to include one more salient fact. The reason I mentioned the Onkyo A/V amp.

 

When watching the big TV, I change to speakers from my PC to the amp so I can utilize surround sound or stereo music through stereo/surround system.. When I right click the speaker icon in the tray & change playback devices, I should see the Onkyo amp. After a power failure, the selection will change the ID name to Samsung and sometimes Skyworth UHD. Again no big deal as I know what it is, but why would a power failure change the name of a device?

 

What can I do to prevent a power failure from changing anything? Enquiring minds want to know.

 

Xahid...you asked if I could post a screen shot. Screen shot of what, exactly?

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Xahid    5,324
7 minutes ago, Tagaa said:

Thanks for that.

 

What can I tell you. I'm an intelligent guy that has the ability to think ahead, something I can assure you Thai people do not possess. I also try to spell correctly...something I don't see much of anymore.

 

Forgot to include one more salient fact. The reason I mentioned the Onkyo A/V amp.

 

When watching the big TV, I change to speakers from my PC to the amp so I can utilize surround sound or stereo music through stereo/surround system.. When I right click the speaker icon in the tray & change playback devices, I should see the Onkyo amp. After a power failure, the selection will change the ID name to Samsung and sometimes Skyworth UHD. Again no big deal as I know what it is, but why would a power failure change the name of a device?

 

What can I do to prevent a power failure from changing anything? Enquiring minds want to know.

 

Its good to give as much detail information as you can, its easier to understand, (but some techy people don't like to read too much)

 

For the power failure, you already have UPS with recommended brand APC, I don't think you need anything else but "Surge protection power sockets" can save another day.

 

Let me see your Desktop screen shot, what it looks like now.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tagaa    2

I've tried 2 or 3 ways that I know of to get a complete screen shot of everything, but all I can get is a web page image which won't show you anything. I did attach a shot of the advanced settings window. As you can see, numerous items between A & F are missing...that is where Enable Thumbnails resides.

Capture.PNG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Xahid    5,324

Can you try "Adjust for best appearance" and check ?

if not check Aero related service in the Service manager is running (control panel=>administrative tools)

another option is create new user and check the options.

 

Some other people suggestions are as below.

https://superuser.com/questions/396580/windows-7-aero-themes-greyed-out-no-found-fix

https://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/forum/windows_7-desktop/windows-aero-dont-work-properly-win-7-ultimate/4cb73013-c3a1-4208-a785-bd8bcaeebdcd

https://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/windows/en-US/ed2b6c41-4cb4-4c0b-a072-a72f71071d61/rtm-aero-peek-not-available-or-not-working?forum=w7itproui

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tagaa    2

Changed to Adjust for best appearance...applied & no change.

 

It's evening here & I'm tired of messing with this problem for today.  I 'll look at your other suggestions when I get up tomorrow and have a cup of coffee.

 

Thanks for the help. After a week or two more of almost daily power failures, my system will return to be as it should.

 

Here is the 64 thousand dollar question. Why are power failures changing my system & what can be done to prevent this from happening again? What is the problem and what is the long term solution to my problem. Those answers are what elude me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tagaa    2

Coffee cup firmly in hand, I went through the three suggested links. Most of the suggested fixes I have already tried. Again, none put my system settings back where they should be.

 

Sometime in the next 5 to 20 power failures, my system will rest itself back to normal. When it does, I would like to be able to implement a fix to prevent power failures from effecting my settings. If anyone has a solution for this I would be most grateful.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
goretsky    1,018

Hello,

 

Given that power interruptions seem to be a frequent occurrence in your part of the world, have you considered adding a second UPS system dedicated to the Hewlett-Packard desktop PC that operates either as line-interactive or online via incoming AC power signal?  The UPS could be monitored by the desktop computer via USB, serial or even over Ethernet to perform an orderly shutdown of the desktop if the power outage exceeds a certain amount of time and/or amount of battery runtime remaining (e.g., shutdown after one minute of no power, if only 5 minutes of backup power are remaining, and so forth).

 

Regards,

 

Aryeh Goretsky

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tagaa    2

Thanks Aryeh,

 

I have not ever considered a second UPS. I take that back...I have considered getting a second one for a fan...for me, not the PC.

 

One thing I do, as I think I mentioned before, is that when the power does go out, I shut down the PC if power has not returned in 5 minutes or so. I usually do not let the UPS perform the shut down.

 

Today we had a flash outage (5 sec's or so) about 8 AM, then at 9:45 the power went out for real. It did not come back on until 5 PM. I was told they were clearing a grove of large bamboo that had overtaken the power lines. Here, preventive maintenance is a dirty 4 letter word. Once power returned, I powered up the PC so I could watch the Braves whoop up on the Brewers. I noted the resolution on the 55" TV had changed & the sound driver (the speaker icon in the system tray)  now showed the A/V amp identifier name was changed from TX-NR737 to Skyworth UHD. The sound still came through the amp, it just changed the name. No big deal, but WTF??? Unfortunately, my thumbnails did not reappear. I still have text. No worry...there will be another outage along soon enough.

 

Something occurred to me yesterday evening. I don't remember having this problem before I got the APC UPS (April 2017). So last night before I went to bed, I unplugged the USB cable between the UPS & my PC. Today the same problem (or part of it) returned, so I guess that had nothing to do with it. I think the next time my thumbnails reappear, I will disconnect the UPS & go bareback, so to speak, & see what happens. Hard shut downs & F1 to re-boot are in my future, but it will be interesting to see if the APC UPS has anything at all to do with the unwanted changes. Come to think of it, Monday night or Tuesday morning I will call APC & see what they have to say about it, if anything.

 

I would still like to be able to implement a fix to prevent power failures from effecting my settings. This really is my # 1 concern. I have a friend that is a retired egg head from Microsoft & he says he has never heard of my problem before. Evidently, neither has anyone else. I feel special.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tagaa    2

Last night as I slept, we had another outage. My only indication of this, when I awoke, was 00:00 on the microwave clock. MY Hp PC was off but still plugged into the APC UPS.

 

I fired up the PC & immediately noted two obvious changes. The resolution on the 55"  TV had changed (the desktop photo no longer filled the screen) & my desktop shortcuts had shifted position to half on the 55" TV & half on the monitor. When I right clicked on the sound icon to change from PC speakers to the A/V amp, I noted the ident name of the amp was no longer Skyworth UHD, but now read Samsung. Once I opened Firefox & got some things up & running, viola, I noted my thumbnails had returned.

 

Here is a current screen shot of the advanced settings window. For easy comparison I have inserted the screen shot I posted above, and below that, the current image. You can see all choices beginning with E have returned, thus enabling Aero & Desktop Composition. I also note that Save taskbar thumbnail previews and Show thumbnails instead of icons has returned.

On 8/10/2018 at 7:18 PM, Tagaa said:

 

Capture.PNG

Current image below.

 

Again I ask, why does a power failure do this & what can I do to prevent it from happening again. Once again I will add that doing a system restore point in this configuration will not bring this back after an outage induced change.

 

image.thumb.png.90d1ba85c54193b7728cedbe321e7591.png

Edited by Tagaa
Corrections

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
zhangm    1,333

I'm curious about following:

 

What graphics adapter is installed in the computer? Is there an integrated GPU in addition to a discrete?

 

Is there a difference in Power Options/Settings being applied? Is there any chance that Aero is being disabled when the machine detects a switch to battery - and fails to switch back?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tagaa    2

By graphics adapter, I assume you mean the card. It's a 1023 MB Nvidia GeForce GT 705. I have no idea if there is a integrated GPU. I am happy to search that out if you tell me where to look.

 

I make no changes regarding Power Options/settings. If Aero is being disabled it's sometimes doing it by itself when the machine is turned off. This is the vexing problem as sometimes this happens at night when I am sleeping & the PC is shut down, sometimes, as in the last time thumbnails  changed to text, the event that prompted me to find this forum, it was turned on and the power failure/battery backup was only on a few seconds.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
goretsky    1,018

Hello,

 

Out of curiosity, have you checked the computer's hard disk drive for errors using the drive manufacturer's diagnostics?  Sometimes subtle, hard-to-identify problems can be caused by a failing drive.

 

Regards,

 

Aryeh Goretsky

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tagaa    2

Thanks Aryeh,

 

i have never done that, so I went to Seagate's website & downloaded the diagnostic Seat Tools...I installed it and ran the long test. It passed. Nothing was noted as being a problem...just that it Passed.

 

Keep those cards and letters coming.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tagaa    2

Just noticed my spelling error... Supposed to be Sea Tools.

 

No replies since Tuesday so I guess I've stumped the panel, eh?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
exotoxic    680

When you have the missing "visual effects" can you run windows experience index and see what rating you get?

 

Have you checked the event logs?

 

Have you run sfc /scannow?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tagaa    2

Exotoxic,

 

I ran sfc /scannow & it"did not find any integrity problems."

 

I went the event viewer looked at system & applications...both only went back to 8/18, so I'm guessing that was the last time I did a system restore.

 

I have not had an extended power outage since 8/11 (yes, I keep a log...that outage was 7.5 hours) but have had at least one 5 second outage every day since then, some days as many as five, and my system is still as it should be...all systems nominal. Very strange as in the past it would have reverted to the missing Aero mode/situation & most likely came back to nominal, at least once.

 

Maybe something I did that was suggested by the forum members has solved the problem.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Dutchie64    645

You haven't answered Goretsky's first question, as that was the first thing that popped into my head reading your post.
Just link the UPS to the PC so it can monitor it, and shut down the PC properly when the battery hits x%.
 

Or is there a reason you cannot do that?

rob

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tagaa    2

The PC is connected to the UPS via a USB cable. I did mention in my reply to Goretsky that if I am able, I do shut down the PC prior to the UPS completing that function. It seems to make no difference whether I shut down the PC or the UPS does it automatically. I have the UPS set to shut down the PC when it gets down to 5 minutes power remaining should I not be at my desk when the power goes out.

 

The other night we had a 2 hour power failure between 1:30 & 3:30 AM. The PC was shut down as I was in bed. The next morning when I booted my PC, I noticed that Nvidia changed settings all by itself & now my 55" TV was the primary monitor & my desk monitor was secondary. All my desktop icons and the task bar had moved to the big TV. No big deal as I changed all back in just a few minutes.

 

The positive thing was that I still had thumbnails & Windows Aero was still included in the Visual Effects list. So maybe the Sea Tools or sfc /scannow function has fixed an error.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.