How to Find Help at Microsoft for Your Computer Problems

If you want help with a Windows problem, the ultimate source is Microsoft. There is a vast accumulation of information on the Microsoft website. Unfortunately, the site is huge and keeps changing. Finding anything can be like the proverbial hunt for a needle in a haystack. To help find things on Microsoft, I have put together a short list of some Microsoft links that may make it easier to get answers when help is wanted.

Microsoft being Microsoft, these sites are not always as useful as they might be. However, it is possible to dig a little deeper into the vast array of Microsoft articles when that seems necessary. If you can describe your problem in a short phrase, try doing a Google search on the phrase and add site:Microsoft.com to your search query. This will often turn up something useful in the encyclopedic collection called the Microsoft Knowledge Base or in one of the Microsoft forums. For example, if you need help with a System Restore problem in Windows 7, a Google search query might look like:
             Windows-7 system restore failure site:microsoft.com

And there you have it. Now you can make good use of all those Microsoft articles.

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This tips section is maintained by Vic Laurie. Vic runs several websites with Windows how-to's and tutorials, including  a computer education website and a site for learning about the command line.

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Comments

by John Thompson (Devon, United Kingdom) (not verified) on 27. October 2011 - 18:48  (82257)

I consider myself to be a novice! My colleagues and friends think I am a computer Geek! If I have a problem I Google the Internet and almost 90% of the searches find a solution to the problem. My advice to any other member of the forum is to have a second computer (laptop) on hand to help you to resolve problems. By subscribing to this site I find that I am not alone with my problems and they can be shared at minimum cost.
Thank you to all of the editors who have helped me over the last 2-3 years I shall certainly be subscribing for 2012.

by eikelein on 30. October 2011 - 12:55  (82403)

v.laurie,

Thanks a bunch for this little list. But I do have a question, although it is slightly off topic:

Why do you write in your query string "Windows-7..." rather than "Windows 7..."? So in short: Why the hyphen?

What am I missing?
TIA

by Ken Maughan (not verified) on 30. October 2011 - 13:23  (82404)

I agree with John T. If it wasn't for sites like this and the help they give to us amateurs, I'd still be using a Commodore 64. The internet is the best place to find answers to all computing and life's problems. As I tell my wife "someone, somewhere has had the same problems as me, and the answer is on the internet"
I agree also that it's always best to have a second computer or tablet or phone just in case your main computer goes "belly-up" to assist in finding solutions.
Thanks Gizmo! Keep up the good work!

by v.laurie on 30. October 2011 - 13:43  (82408)

Using the hyphen indicates that "windows" and "7" go together.

by Bob2011 (not verified) on 30. October 2011 - 16:55  (82414)

Personally, I am on Microsoft Technet more than the forums on the list. FYI there are certain forum participants who have "MCC" in listed, and I find that the answers from those posters at 90% of the time right on the money. Since Technet is from Microsoft, I suspect "MCC" forum participants can be found on Microsoft's other forums as well.

by Marks (not verified) on 30. October 2011 - 16:58  (82415)

I've seen that too. What does MCC stand for? Any ideas?

by v.laurie on 30. October 2011 - 17:19  (82416)

MCC stands for "Microsoft Community Contributor". Microsoft says:
"The Microsoft Community Contributor Award is reserved for participants who have made notable contributions in Microsoft online community forums such as TechNet, MSDN and Answers."

by William W (not verified) on 30. October 2011 - 17:41  (82417)

After doing a Google search, I come up with MCC standing for Microsoft Community Contributor

Hope this helps

by Oldgoat1957 (not verified) on 30. October 2011 - 21:42  (82428)

Great stuff - this is one of those things that seems obvious, but that is never really talked about - so, thank you. The Microsoft web site are pretty hard to navigate, just because of their sheer size.

by Confused2much (not verified) on 25. May 2012 - 16:23  (93945)

How can I find a MCC? I got major computer problems!!

by v.laurie on 25. May 2012 - 16:45  (93948)

If you can be more specific about the nature of your problems, you can get plenty of help by posting your questions in the Freeware Forum.

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