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Advanced Diagnostic Tools in Windows 7

In this chapter from Troubleshooting Windows 7 Inside Out, Mike Halsey covers some of the advanced tools that come with Windows 7, describing the features and capabilities of each one and explaining how you can use them to help you troubleshoot your Windows 7 system.

In Chapter 2, “The Basic Windows 7 Utilities,” you learned about the basic diagnostic and help utilities included with Windows 7. In this chapter, I cover some of the advanced tools that come with Windows 7, describing the features and capabilities of each one and explaining how you can use them to help you troubleshoot your Windows 7 system.

Performance Information and Tools

Performance Information and Tools is a central location for many types of information about your PC and how Windows 7 performs on it. The easiest way to access Performance Information and Tools is by typing performance in the Start menu search box, as shown in Figure 14-1. You can access its components separately in Control Panel by selecting System and Security\Administrative Tools.

Figure 14-1

Figure 14-1 Accessing Performance Information and Tools

The basic function of Performance Information and Tools is to provide a front end to features such as the Windows Experience Index and options for adjusting the visual effects, power settings, and indexing options of your copy of Windows. Once you’re in the Performance Information and Tools window, which is shown in Figure 14-2, click Advanced Tools in the left pane to access the advanced tools, which are shown in Figure 14-3.

Figure 14-2

Figure 14-2 Performance Information and Tools window

Figure 14-3

Figure 14-3 Advanced tools in Performance and Information Tools

These advanced tools are extremely useful in diagnosing performance problems with Windows 7 and your software and hardware drivers. I don’t provide details for every tool in this chapter, but I do cover what I consider the vital ones individually: Event Log, Performance Monitor, Resource Monitor, Task Manager, System Information, System Health Report, and the Computer Management console.