Tuesday, 10 January 2017

Ultimate Boot CD, a tool every computer owner must have

ultimate boot cd
Problems with a computer -- laptop or desktop -- are the worst kind of problems. At a time when they are in the middle of our digital lives, these issues can be even crippling and although modern computers are fairly hard to break, there are occasions when they fail. When you run into problems, here is what that can happen:
-- The computer won't switch on. 
-- The computer will switch on but won't boot.
-- The computer will have BSOD (blue screen of death) and shutdown. Again and again. 
These problem is on most occasions hardware related. If the computer won't even turn on, you have no option but go to a service centre. Or, if it is an assembled desktop and you are comfortable with computer hardware, you can open the box and look into the power supply issues.
But if the machine is facing the other two problems, you can troubleshoot it. And while trouble-shooting, one indispensable tool you need to have is the Ultimate Boot CD. 

Here is a personal example. Recently, my computer, which was assembled around four years ago, started having BSODs. It just switched off and when I tried rebooting, most of the time the effort resulted in more BSODs. Even on occasions when I managed to log into the safe mode in Windows, it suffered BSOD within minutes.
There was clearly something wrong with the hardware of the computer because it wouldn't even let me go to the Windows recovery options.
So, how do you fix something like this? You need Ultimate Boot CD. 

What is Ultimate Boot CD?

Ultimate Boot CD is a collection of tens of widely-used software tools. All these tools are free and are available as standalone programs. But Ultimate Boot CD brings them in one place. These tools can diagnose and benchmark computer hardware. They can even help you save your data when things go wrong.  
Although the name says it's a CD, it is actually a file. It is an ISO file, the kind of files that CDs have. You can put this file onto a CD or (better) you can put it in a pen drive. 

What it can do?

Ultimate Boot CD can help you diagnose problems with computer's hardware, including problems with RAM, CPU, hard disk and graphics card. The most serious kind of problems, which often result in BSODs, usually happen with these components. The Ultimate Boot CD can also help you access data in various hard drives in your computer, and if required, move them whenever possible. This means even if your computer is not booting, you can most likely save your precious data. 

How to create Ultimate Boot CD?

As the name suggests, to diagnose problems with a computer you need to boot using the Ultimate Boot CD. Here is how to do it:
-- Download Ultimate Boot CD from here
-- Download Universal USB Installer from here

-- Once the two files have been downloaded, plug SanDisk Cruzer Blade SDCZ50-008G-I35 8GB USB 2.0 Pen Drive or a Pen Drive with at least 1GB capacity into the computer. 
-- Open Universal USB Installer. Select Ultimate Boot CD from the list. Tell the program where the Ultimate Boot CD is located on your computer (navigate to path) and then follow instruction to create a bootable pen drive. 
-- The pen drive with Ultimate Boot CD into it should be ready for use in a few minutes. 

How to fix problems using Ultimate Boot CD

Once you have created the bootable pen drive, you can use it to fix issues. Ideally, you should keep one such pen drive handy. You never know when your computer has a problem. Also, once your machine has a problem and you don't have the Ultimate Boot CD pen drive, you will have to seek another computer on which you can create such pen drive. 
To use the Ultimate Boot CD pen drive, plug it in the computer that has a problem before you turn it on. After turning it on, press the required key to get into the BIOS. Different laptops and computers use different key for BIOS. For example on my computer this key is DELETE key. This key has to be pressed before you see animated Windows logo. 
Once you are successfully into the BIOS, look for the boot order and set the computer to boot from pen drive. 
Once you have booted from the pen drive, here is what you will see:

You can navigate within this menu using ENTER, ARROW keys and ESC key. There are lots of tools here. Depending on the issue you are facing on your computer, you can use various tools. But in general two tools are important.
1- Most of the problems in computer happen because of failing RAM or dying hard disk. 
2- To check RAM, use the Memtest86. If there are errors, the RAM in your computer is faulty. Even one error here is bad. 
3- To check hard disk, use SeaTools. If there are errors with the hard disk, that is faulty. 
In my case, the problem was with the RAM which showed errors at its specified speed of 1866MHz. But the same RAM passed the Memtest86 at a reduced speed of 1333MHz so I reduced the RAM speed in BIOS and managed to access all the data in the computer. It will probably fail again in future, even at reduced settings, but for now the computer is fine so I can live with it.
While troubleshooting is one aspect of the Ultimate Boot CD, you can also use it to check and stress test a new computer. There are lots of benchmarks built into the CD, which can be used to find faults, if any, in the hardware of a newly bought or assembled computer.

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