The Money Mustache Community

Learning, Sharing, and Teaching => Ask a Mustachian => Topic started by: Catbert on September 18, 2017, 03:14:24 PM

Title: Is My Laptop Dying?
Post by: Catbert on September 18, 2017, 03:14:24 PM
I'm a computer illiterate in my mid-60s so please keep your answers simple.

I have an inexpensive Dell laptop which is 3-4 years old.  Windows 10 has been loaded.  For the last month or so often when I go to websites I initially see them without any graphics and with minimum formating.  The words will be there, but the headings will all be left justified, no pictures, more fancy formatting and one color background.  It's happening more and more frequently.  Once I hit refresh the page will come back normal.

Not particularly annoying, but I don't want to wake up one day with a dead laptop.   Does it sound like it's dying?  Or just getting cranky like I am?
Title: Re: Is My Laptop Dying?
Post by: rdaneel0 on September 18, 2017, 03:51:17 PM
I would guess that your flash player is out of date, which would explain why you can only load the text on websites. This is good news and means running updates will likely fix the issue. Start by rebooting your machine, if you haven't shut it down in a long time it may begin to run updates on its own once it reboots.

If this doesn't occur, you will have to run the updates yourself:

If you prefer, you can take your machine to a help center and have them update it for you, but it is a fairly straightforward process.

I would also recommend clearing your cache:

Title: Re: Is My Laptop Dying?
Post by: zolotiyeruki on September 18, 2017, 03:58:05 PM
It sounds to me like the styles aren't being applied, which I've often seen happen when they take a longer time to load than they should (or the download gets corrupted).  A laptop 3-4 years old is still just fine, hardware-wise--computers haven't advanced nearly as much in the last decade as they did in the previous decade.
Title: Re: Is My Laptop Dying?
Post by: damyst on September 18, 2017, 10:51:31 PM
What zolotiyeruki said. When a page falls to load fully within a few seconds, the browser may show you the raw page text without its accompanying styling.

If the problem goes away when you wait *without* refreshing, your laptop or network connection is very slow. Try a faster connection or get someone to stop all unnecessary programs running on the laptop and see if it runs any better.

If the problem does not go away without refreshing, then either your internet connection is terrible, or (more likely) the browser is infected with malware and/or a broken plugin. Recruit someone to clean it up for you.

You didn't mention which browser you're using. If it's not Google Chrome, you should probably switch to Google Chrome.
Title: Re: Is My Laptop Dying?
Post by: zolotiyeruki on September 19, 2017, 08:36:10 AM
It's not as relevant as it used to be, but there's still nothing quite like a reformat/reinstall of the OS to get things feeling fresh again.