Your PC might not be as crucial for you as your smart phone, but odds are it is still pretty damn significant. So it is totally understandable if your initial response would be to freeze out and freak when you encounter a PC crisis, including a broken display, accidentally-deleted important document, or even a virus. But panicking is counter-productive, since time is often of the essence.

Do not worry. As you can not call 9-1-1, here is what you can do to mend five frequent PC emergencies.

Broken laptop display

A couple of months back, I had been working in my MacBook Air alongside my French bulldog, Blanka. For many unexplained dog motive, Blanka suddenly decided he had to be within my own lap , so that he jumped on meand landed on my notebook’s screen. A notebook screen isn’t a game for a 27-pound Frenchie, therefore, of course, my screen was toast.

First things first: Check to be certain only your notebook’s display, rather than something more significant (like the graphics card) was ruined. If your display is damaged or cracked, simply continue to use your computer normally to determine if any additional problems arise.

If there’s no visible damage, however, the display is acting odd, you can try plugging an external screen in your notebook computer. You’ll require an output jack (HDMI, mini-HDMI, DisplayPort, mini-DisplayPort, DVI, or VGA) and an external computer or TV to try it, in addition to the suitable cable. Some laptops have an outside screen mode you will have to trigger, typically via Function keys. If your notebook’s output appears fine on the outside screen, you probably have a easy screen issue rather than something more severe.

Fix it: The great news about a busted display is that you don’t want to repair it straight away. If your display has a hairline crack across the border, you can continue to use your notebook as usual, even though it’s likely a fantastic idea to prevent transferring it, shutting it, or travel with itbecause any strain on the display can get the crack to get larger. In case you have an outside monitor available, it is possible to just use your notebook for a desktop for now.

Connect your notebook to an external screen to make sure it is actually the display that is broken rather than something deeper.

If you do wish to repair your display, you’ve got two choices: You can certainly do it yourself, or you could get it mended with a third party repair store (or, in the event that you bought an extended, inadvertent damage-covering guarantee, from the producer ). A DIY fix on a simple notebook display is easier than you believe, but in case you’ve got a technical notebook like an Ultrabook, a two-in-one, or even a MacBook, it is far better to observe a specialist. Ultra-thin displays, like the ones located on Ultrabooks and MacBook Airs, may be particularly tricky to substitute, and sometimes are not even worth replacing in any way.

Deleted an important document

There are two different types of”important” documents: The ones that are important to you, like the images from the teenager’s high-school graduation, and also those which are important to your pc , like files. Hopefully you do not make a habit of snooping about your PC’s root connections and deleting documents, but crucial files can at times be corrupted or deleted from system crashesmalware, or adware anti-virus applications.

First things first: If you inadvertently hit delete on a significant photograph or record, do not panic. First, see if you’re able to find itopen Windows Explorer and type the document name into the search box at the top right corner. It is possible you did not delete the document in any way, but only moved it to another folder using a few accidental mouse actions.

If you can’t find it in a search, start your Recycle Bin, which can be situated in your desktop computer, and search for the file. Whether there are a great deal of files from the Recycle Bin, right-click within the window, then place over Sort by and click on Date Deleted. The recently deleted documents will look on peak of the window.

If this does not work, consider having a deleted-file recovery instrument such as the excellent Recuva to recover your lost information. (Recuva’s on PCWorld’s record of that the 22 free apps fresh PCs need for a reason.)

If your document is not in the Recycle Bin and can not be discovered by Recuva, you might have the ability to restore it readily from a backup. Windows 7 mechanically generates”previous versions” of your documents, however in Windows 8 you’ll need to manually switch on a feature named File History so for this to take place. In Windows 7, then start Windows Explorer and discover the folder which contained the document. Right-click on the folder and then click on Restore preceding . You will see a listing of folder copies by date modified. Click a backup that has been made prior to you recall deleting the document, and then click Restore…

In Windows 8, then you are able to recover deleted files manually by opening the File History menu and clicking Restore files that are personal.

Fix it: If you can not locate your deleted file or restore it in Windows’ File History, you’re still not completely out of luck.

Source #2 is your modem, which could be malfunctioning. Source #3 is your wireless router, which could also be malfunctioning. And Source #4 is your computer.

Fix it: To check if your ISP is having an outage, go to DownDetector (on your phone, since you don’t have Internet access) and click on your provider. DownDetector is a crowd-sourced website that lets users report issues with their Internet service. Their Live Outage Map will show you a heat map of where most of the reports are coming from. If your area is covered in red, you could be experiencing an outage. There’s not much you can do here, except call your ISP and ask them to refund you for the outage time.

If there’s no outage–or you can’t access DownDetector in some way–you should go ahead and check your modem and router. First, unplug the router, then, unplug the modem. Wait at least 30 seconds, and plug the modem back in. Wait another 30 seconds and plug the router back in. Restart (or boot up) your PC. You should now have Internet! If you don’t, check to see whether the issue is your router by plugging your PC directly into the modem using an ethernet cable. If you have Internet after this step, your router is the problem.

If you do not have Internet after this step, your modem could be the problem, or your ethernet cable itself. Try a different ethernet cable if you have one handy.

If everything thus far works fine, the problem could be with your PC. The easiest way to test this is to try to connect to the Internet with another device–a PC, phone, or tablet. If you can, then your PC is the problem. Check to make sure your network adapter is turned on by going to Control Panel > Device Manager > Network adapters.

Right-click your network adapter and click Enable if it’s disabled. Otherwise, click Properties and check the device status (it should say “This device is working properly”). If the device is not working properly, you may need to update its driver. Click the Driver tab and click Update Driver….

If you’re using Wi-Fi, check to make sure your Wi-Fi is turned on–some laptops have a switch or a Function key that toggles the Wi-Fi on and off.

You got a virus

Maybe you let your antivirus subscription lapse, maybe you clicked on a sketchy pop-up, maybe you downloaded something you shouldn’t have–no judgment. But no matter how you ended up with it, you now have a virus and it’s quickly eating up your PC.

First things first: Determine whether you might have a virus. Viruses and malware can present themselves in many ways. You may be seeing unexplained pop-up ads, your PC may be running extremely slowly, or maybe your PC is crashing constantly. Unless you have an antivirus program that alerts you to a virus’ existence, it is difficult to tell if you’ve got one or if you merely have a faulty motherboard (or another hardware problem ), but it is far better to be safe than sorry.

Prior to doing anything else, disconnect from the Internet. Viruses adore the Internet, and the very last thing you want is to allow this to find some type of killer upgrade from its host which hastens your PC or even turns into a zombie.

Fix it: Restart your PC in Safe Mode. To boot into Safe Mode, restart your computer and press the F8 key repeatedly–do not just hold down it –until you find the Advanced Boot Options menu. Use the arrow keys to Select Safe Mode with Networking and press Enter.

Once you’re in Safe Mode, use an antivirus app and also an antimalware program to run some scans. You will want to set up a new antivirus program even if you currently have one in your PC, since the older antivirus program clearly missed something. You can accomplish it by loading the program on a flash drive and installing it out so that you do not have to reconnect your PC to the Internet. Besides an antivirus scan, you also need to conduct an antimalware (on-demand) scan using MalwareBytes only to be certain.

Hopefully, the antivirus/antimalware apps are going to have the ability to root out the virus and then repair it. But if they do not work–or should they vanish or crash when you attempt to run them (since some viruses are damn clever, and understand when apps are made to ruin them)– then you might want to reinstall Windows, and restore your documents and settings from that that backup you created before.

There’s 1 sort of virus you may not have the ability to resolve this manner, and that is ransomware. Learn how to eliminate ransomware, and remember: If you suspect that you may have ransomware, first thing you have to do is disconnect and disconnect any automated cloud syncing services that you have put up. Since the last thing you need is for ransomware to lock off your cloud folder and then sync itself on all your other devices.