Windows Secrets Newsletter: Best of LangaList 2011

windows secrets

By Fred Langa/Windows Secrets Newsletter

Every issue, the LangaList Plus technical Q&A tackles difficult — and sometimes esoteric — problems sent in by Windows Secrets subscribers.

For this last LangaList Plus of 2011, we’ve assembled some of the most popular Langa stories of this past year; we cover topics ranging from working around a Windows 7 networking bug to 14 free tools for digging out stubborn malware infections.

Win7 network stuck in ‘Public’ mode

A bug in Windows 7 can make your PC think that safe home or work networks are unsafe Public networks — and prevent you from correcting the problem!

(Editor’s Note: Fred’s solution below was picked up by Microsoft and published, in modified form, as Knowledge Base article 2578723, which includes a one-click Fix It. However, Microsoft’s treatment skips several of Fred’s steps that help ensure success. Here’s Fred’s original write-up, which includes all the steps.)

Reader Pam’s Public network settings are stuck and are blocking her connections.

“I accidentally checked the box that says ‘make all future networks public and do not show this again,’ not realizing it was for anything other than the hotel network I was accessing. Now I can’t connect to my home network anymore. What can I do? Running Windows 7.”

Windows 7 automatically adjusts its security settings according to the network locations you choose. So that “do this forever; never ask again” option is indeed dangerous. It’s a rabbit hole — once you go in, it can be hard to get back out.

I reproduced Pam’s situation on a network in my office so I could grab screen shots such as Figure 1, a normal Win7 Network and Sharing Center (TechNet info) dialog box. In Figure 1, the cursor is next to the network location label (under View your active networks), which in this case is set to Public network.

Here’s the rest of the story.

This post is excerpted with permission from Windows Secrets.

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