Sunday, September 30, 2012

Drag and Drop

Answer Man

What is meant by drag and drop?

Let us assume that there are two windows open on the desktop. You wish to move a photo from the right folder to the left folder. You left click on the photo and continue to hold down the left mouse button as you move the mouse into the other window. You let go of the left mouse button and the photo will now appear in the window into which you dragged the photo.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Re-size Windows

Answer Man

How do you re-size windows?

You can restore down by clicking on the overlapping squares at the top right of the screen. You can move the cursor to either side of the window until it turns into a double headed arrow and can drag in the side by holding down the left mouse button and moving the mouse. You can left click on the corner of a window until you get the double headed arrow and then drag the window on a diagonal.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Learn a Language

Answer Man

I would like to learn Spanish, but all of the programs such as Rosetta Stone come with a high price tag. Do you know of any Internet language programs that are free?

There's a very good free program called Duolingo It is limited to English, Spanish, German

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Print Queue

Answer Man

I have tried to print several times, but nothing is happening. What should I do?

No doubt you have several items waiting to be printed in what is called the print queue. New prints won't occur until the old ones are cleared out. To clear out all documents being printed, click Start, Control Panel, Printers. Click on the printer you want to clear. Click Printing and click Cancel All documents. If the documents don't clear, you may have to re-start your computer.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Old Printer, New Computer

Answer Man

I bought a new computer and have an old printer. The printer doesn't seem to work. What do I need to do to make it work?

Printers require software called drivers. If you have the original software disk for your printer you can insert it in the CD drive and re-start your computer to install the software. If that doesn't work, you probably need an updated driver which you can obtain from the printer manufacturer"s website. If no updated driver is available, it means that your old printer is not compatible with the operating system you are using. If that's the case, you will have to bite the bullet and purchase a new printer.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Multiple e-mails

Answer Man

I want to send an e-mail to several people. How can I do that?

You enter the first address in the TO line. Then insert a comma. Enter the 2nd address and a comma. Enter the 3rd address and so on.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Cost of E-Mail

Answer Man

I have been on dial-up Internet with AOL for years. I want to switch to DECCA Broadband. What will e-mail with another provider cost?

You pay quite a bit to Century Link or DECCA Cable for a broadband connection, but e-mail through all of the providers I know is free. That includes: Hotmail, G-Mail, Yahoo Mail, AOL Mail and lots more. If you switch to Century Link or DECCA you can still keep your old AOL e-mail account without incurring costs from AOL.

Sunday, September 23, 2012


Answer Man

I know you mentioned a great free downloadable dictionary. What's the address?

No doubt you mean Wordweb What makes this dictionary/thesaurus so great is that no matter what program or web site you are on, you can press CTRL and right click the mouse to instantly see the definition or synonym. There is some nutty disclaimer about users not making more than one  commercial jet flight a year to keep the program for free, but otherwise it is a terrific site. Try any word in this message to see what a great program this is.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Classical Music

Answer Man

I am a fan of classical music.  Can you suggest a good Internet radio station?

Try the following

Friday, September 21, 2012

Recovery Disks

Answer Man

I just bought a new Toshiba laptop and tried to create recovery disks. I kept getting an error on the 2nd disk and couldn't continue. Any suggestions?

When you start the process, look for a box that says Verify. Click in that box to remove the check so that there is no verification. That will speed up the process and you shouldn't get the error.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Scanner Software

Answer Man

My HP scanner software stopped working.  I tried a re-installation but that didn't work. I used to use their Solutions Center to Scan. Is there anything I can substitute.

There are several things you can do, but perhaps the easiest is to use MS Paint which comes with Windows. Click Start, Accessories, MS Paint, File, From Scanner or Camera. Then click Scan.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Browsers are Free

Answer Man

Is it true that browsers are free?

All the browsers I know of are free.  That includes:  Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Safari, Google Chrome and Opera.  All you have to do is to download them and start using them.


Many of the blog readers have asked  how we can rid our computers of annoying toolbars such as Babylon Search, Ask.Com, Bleko and others. The answers to the problem have just been beautifully addressed by Kim Komando in her daily column. I suggest you click on the following link to her site if you are bothered by those irksome toolbars.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Executive Board Minutes - September 14, 2012

Alan Marcus, President, called the meeting to order at 9:00 AM. Members in attendance: Laurence Bauer, Frazer Crane, Jim Dillman, Ron Kenyon, Bob Leiner, Laura Stein, and Carol Norton. 

Secretary’s report read by Carol Norton. August treasury balance corrected to reflect $1,305.25.
Laura Stein, Treasurer, reported a balance of $1,236.26.

Frazer Crane volunteered to accept responsibility for the December 19 Holiday party, purchasing assorted donuts, bagels, cream cheese, etc.

Bob Leiner made motion, seconded by Laurence Bauer, and approved to purchase Windows 8 for installation on the club’s computer. Alan Marcus to purchase and Bob Leiner will install. Windows 8 will be available for sale on October 25.

Frazer Crane volunteered to handle Channel 12 publicity thru December 2012. Ron Kenyon volunteered to handle Oak Run Newsletter information for the remainder of 2012.

On September 19, Lauren Brosnihen from the Marion County Public Library will join us and give a presentation on the library system’s e-book collection. A Kindle e-reader will be given out at this meeting.

Upcoming Programs: Oct 17 – Dennis Rubacha, Event Coordinator for Verizon, will discuss “What Smart Phones Can Do”; Nov 21 – Ron Kenyon will present a tour of the Club’s website, with instructions how to join, post, and comment. Members are encouraged to bring a laptop in order to set up an account and practice using the website. Dec 19 – Holiday Party and program on Windows 8. 

The meeting adjourned at 9:45 AM.

Respectfully submitted,

Carol H. Norton                                    

Photo Degradation

Answer Man

Is it true that each time you copy a photo the picture degrades?

If the photo is a compressed photo (such as a jpeg) each time the copy is copied the picture will be a compression of a compression and you will indeed lose quality. However, if the picture is shot in RAW format and is therefore not compressed, you could copy copies time and time again with virtually no loss.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Folders and sub folders

Answer Man

Is there a limit to how many folders and sub folders you can have?

Not any that I know of. You might, for example, have a Pictures folder, with a sub folder Travel, with a sub folder China, with a sub folder Beijing, with a sub folder Great Wall. You could continue the process on ad infinitum if you needed to, but it might be much more than you need.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Using a Flash Drive

Answer Man

How do you use a flash drive?

A flash drive is a storage device and as such can be used to store files, photos and documents. One end is inserted in a USB port. Then, if you navigate to My Computer and click on it you will see all the drives in your computer. One of those drives will be labeled "Flash Drive". Click on that drive and you will see a blank space into which you can drag or copy files. Since the flash drive is portable, you can remove it and use it to restore files back to your computer should you lose them.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Floppy Disks

Answer Man

Are floppy disks worth keeping?

Yes, they make great frisbees. On a more serious note, you may have some old programs that are no longer available and you may be able to use the programs if you have a floppy drive in your computer. However, the very limited storage capacity of a floppy (1.4 MB) is extremely limiting. Flash drive holding 4, 8 and 16 Gigabytes are very common today, and the prices have been steadily falling.

Friday, September 14, 2012

10 Year Old Computer

Answer Man

I have a 10 year old computer. Is it worth keeping?

The answer depends a great deal upon what you plan to do with the computer. If the computer is very slow, it probably has too little memory, and it just doesn't pay to add any. You may, however, be able to put in a different operating system that uses little memory. I particularly like Ubuntu. It is a free operating system, and if you get one of the earlier versions such as 9.04, you will find that the computer may be quite useful.

Thursday, September 13, 2012


Answer Man

What is a computer kickstand?

It's a relatively new term that refers to a panel that swings out (usually from a tablet computer) to hold the machine upright or at a slight angle to make it easy to read without you having to hold the machine. The new Microsoft Surface tablet comes with a kickstand built in.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Virus locks up computer

Answer Man

I keep getting pop-up messages about viruses on my computer. I know better than to click on the message because they probably want money, but it's preventing me from doing anything with the machine. What can I do?

In most cases that I have encountered, you can restore your computer to an earlier point so that the messages no longer appear. Once you have done that, run your anti-virus program. If that doesn't succeed you will probably have to do a complete recovery of your computer which means that all your personal stuff will be erased and the computer will be as it was when new.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Computer Class - "Working With Photos In Picasa" - Part 2

The ORHA Computer Class, "Working With Photos in Google's Picasa", Part 2, will take place on Friday, Sept 14, at 3PM in the Orchid Club.

Download and use Picasa to index and edit your photos. Learn how to create collages and slideshows. Share photos with friends and family using Picasa Web Albums.

The cost is $2 per person for each class. Computer Club members can attend for free. To learn more click HERE or email Ron at

Meaning of Default

Answer Man

I keep encountering the word default in relation to computing. What is the meaning of the word when referring to computers?

The word refers to a setting that you want to always occur unless replaced by a different one of your choosing. For example, let's say you have two printers. One is a Samsung laser and the other is an HP ink-jet. You want to use the laser about 90% of the time, so you select the Samsung to be the default printer. All printing will now go to the Samsung unless you change the printer settings.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Copying Disks

Answer Man

My computer has just one DVD drive. How can I copy a DVD when there's no place for the copy to go?

Good DVD writer programs, such as CDburnerXP, will create an image from the original disk. After the image has been created, you will be prompted to remove the original disk and to insert a blank disk. The program will resume and will complete the copying process.

Sunday, September 9, 2012


Answer Man

Can a laptop user have both a touch pad and a mouse be operational at the same time?

They certainly can.  Many people don't like the touch pads (sometimes called glide points) and prefer to use a mouse. Simply plug the mouse into a USB port and you're good to go.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Tax Software

Answer Man

What do you think of tax preparation programs for computers?

I have used Turbo-Tax for many years and think it is the greatest thing since sliced bread. I am able to do my taxes in 30 minutes. The program picks up information from past year filings and enters it in the new return so that you don't have to enter the same information each time. The program lets you e-file. I normally have the program be accepted within 24 hours and have gotten a refund in as little as 8 days.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Tiny hard drive

Answer Man

I have an old old old computer that only has a 10 Gigabyte hard drive. Is the computer useful for anything?

It certainly is. I own a netbook with an 8 Gigabyte hard drive and use the computer for many things. You can always add an external hard drive to your system to get as much storage space as you need. I took an 80 Gigabyte hard drive from an old computer someone threw away and put the drive in a cheap drive enclosure. Now, I have 90 Gigabytes available on my original 8 Gigabyte computer.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Credit Card Safety

Answer Man

I have never ordered anything on-line. Is it safe to use a credit card to order?

If you are careful in which sites you order from it should be quite safe. However, I would use a credit card, not a debit card. If a bad source acquires your debit card number they can empty your entire bank account in seconds. Credit card companies, on the other hand, look out for suspicious behavior and will put holds on accounts until problems are rectified. I once got gas for an RV.  The gas pump shut off after $75. I started the pump again and put in another $75. The credit card company thought that the gas station was pulling tricks and the account was frozen until I assured the credit card company that everything was on the up and up.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Picasa Class

The ORHA Computer Class, "Working With Photos in Google's Picasa", a 2-part series, will take place on Fridays, Sept 7 and 14, at 3PM in the Orchid Club.

Download and use Picasa to index and edit your photos. Learn how to create collages and slideshows. Share photos with friends and family using Picasa Web Albums.

The cost is $2 per person for each class. Computer Club members can attend for free. To learn more click HERE or email Ron at

2 Printers

Answer Man

I want to use 2 printers, one is a laser and the other is an inkjet. How do I switch between them?

If the printers are installed correctly, both will show up in your list of printers. One printer will be set up as the default printer. All printing will come from that printer unless you select a different printer. After you start the print process, there will be a place to select a different printer (that place differs from browser to browser). Click on the printer you wish to use. If you return to print sometime later, the computer will switch back to the default printer.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Cheap Ink

Answer Man

I'm amazed by the high cost of ink for my inkjet printer. Do you know of a good place on-line that has relatively cheap ink?

I like Adorama. Their prices are good and usually include free shipping.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Microsoft Word

Answer Man

I keep hearing about Word. What is it, and do I need it?

Microsoft Word is a word processing program. That means that essentially it is a letter writing program. You might find it useful to compose letters in Word, and get them right, before copying and pasting the info into an e-mail. There are many other uses, but I suggest that you use a similar program that is free.  It's called libreoffice.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Browser Start Page

Answer Man

Can I configure my browser so that it opens directly to my e-mail page?

Sure. The method differs some from browser to browser, but in Internet Explorer you click Tools, Internet Options and where the page says home page you type in the address of your e-mail in place of what was in that space.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Not much RAM

Answer Man

I have an old computer that has only 256 MB of RAM. Is the computer useful for anything?

It sure is. I have used computers that had only 150 MB of RAM to run modern programs such as Libre Office. The computer will be much slower than computers having more memory, but, if you are patient, you will find old computers can still be useful for some purposes.

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