Wednesday, July 09, 2008

SOFTWARE: Getting Rid of Powerdesk!

I've touted PowerDesk and its brother-in-code ExplorerPlus for years. In fact, since I don't know WHICH is on any one computer, when I talk to somebody over the phone, I call it "PowerDeskExplorerPlus" just to eliminate the question at the other end of the phone.

But, fer gawdsakes don't install version six of either product on Vista.

If you take my advice on purchasing PowerDeskExplorerPlus (see?), then why, oh why, are you not taking my advice to stay away from that bloated, PITA piece of software called Microsoft Vista Windows? No good answer? Yeah, I thought so. But let's deal with the issue you are now facing.

Depending on how you check off boxes during the install, it is possible you COULD end up without getting any access to your control panel after installing PDEP (too tired to write it all out, or even cut and paste) version 6.x! I discovered that very problem when a pal in the newspaper business phoned me for some help.

Using CrossLoop, I was able to log in and get enveloped in the horror of his situation. He couldn't uninstall PDEP, because there was no Uninstall choice in the menu. And accessing the Control Panel merely opened up PDEP, so he couldn't gain access to ANY applet in the Control Panel. This was a pain in the butt on steroids. I tried a suggestion from The How-To Geek and set up a shortcut for direct access using:
control.exe /name Microsoft.ProgramsAndFeatures

That failed, PDEP showing up. I'm sure you know when exactly I tried it. The AARGH! you heard was me expelling a lot of anguish.

Eventually, I figured out I needed third-party help. I downloaded the trial for Your Uninstaller 2008! and got the job done in about five minutes. It's a pretty good piece of software and you might very well decide to end up buying the product. On the other hand, IF you really only have one program to be made gone, then the trial will do that job with aplomb. It was SO easy, it made me madder about the wasted hour before that, but that will pass. To ease the pain of now being without PDEP, I downloaded 7-zip from its website. That handles compressed files within Windows Explorer. There is NOW a Vista-enabled version 7 of PowerDesk from Avanquest. It's up to you to test it out.

Once PDEP was gone from the machine, trying to access the control panel was easy. I switched it to Classic View (I mean, what idiot thinks ProgramsAndFeatures is easier to understand than Add/Remove Programs?).

While in there, I was able to go into the Power Options settings and change the settings to turn off sleep mode while he his laptop was plugged in. He was fed up with having to take the laptop OUT of the base and open it up, just to turn off sleep mode. Total time to fix the issue? Twenty-one seconds.

That was the problem he originally called me about. The delightful wasted ninety minutes solving the OTHER problem he didn't even know he had was a side issue!

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