Tuesday, March 31, 2015

No picture on web cam

Answer Man

A friend gave me a web cam he purchased in China. I connected it for use by Skype, and while the mike in it works fine, I don't see a picture. Do you think the camera is defective?

I'll bet that you need the latest driver software to make it work correctly. Right click on the start button at the bottom left corner of the screen and then select device manager. Click on Imaging devices and Right click on the web cam. Select "Update driver software". Wait for the new driver to install and you should be good to go.

Monday, March 30, 2015

Printer came without cable

Answer Man

I'm confused. I bought a new wireless printer. There is a big label on it that says that no USB cable is included. I asked a friend about hooking up the printer, and he asked where my USB cable was. I told him that it didn't need one. He insists it does. Who's right?

Your friend is correct. Even though it is a wireless printer, a cable is needed for the initial set-up, and then the cable can be removed. Manufacturers save a few cents by having you buy the cable. Go out and ask for a USB printer cable at your local store, and then follow the set-up instructions.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Moving downloads

Answer Man

The treasurer of our club sends out minutes each month. When I click on "download" the minutes go into the computer's download folder. I don't want them there. I want them in the document's folder. How can I move the minutes?

There are a couple of ways to move the file. You can drag the file from the download's folder to the document's folder or you could cut and paste the file. In either case, the file will no longer appear in the download folder. If you should want the file in both locations, you could do a copy and paste.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Jobs for veterans

Answer Man

I heard that there is an Internet site where jobs for veterans are listed. Have you heard of such a site?

I think you are probably talking about Rally Point https://www.rallypoint.com/. After you navigate to the site, click on "Why Join" to learn about the organization.

Friday, March 27, 2015

What does Hyperlink mean?

Answer Man

I keep running across the term "Hyperlink" but have no idea what it means.

Hyperlinks are Internet links within a document. When you click on one, your computer will find the location of the site defined in the link. Such links are normally blue colored. The following hyperlink will take you back to the Oak Run Computer Club's site:

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Backup storage

Answer Man

Can you tell me how much space my "File history" backup will take up on a back-up drive? I'm using Windows 8.1. Will a flash drive work for the backup?

The answer, of course, depends upon how many items you want to back up, and the size of the files, but my situation may give you some indication. My computer holds 6000 photos, numerous documents and lots of downloads. The initial back-up, using Windows file history backup system, took up 50 GB on my external backup drive. You can see that most flash drives would not have a large enough capacity to hold the backup in my situation.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Change desktop background

Answer Man

Is there an easy way to change the desktop background? I want to put my dog's picture there.

Find the picture in your computer. Right click on the picture and select "Set as desktop background".

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Free Phone

Answer Man

I recently had an appointment at the VA for a medical problem. As I was leaving the VA offices, a woman was standing there with an I-pad and was telling me I could get a free phone without signing anything and with no contract. Her company was Safe-Link. Does it sound legitimate to you?

It is legitimate. Safe-Link is owned by Trac-fone and has a contract with the government. Low income families and those on Medicare qualify. Trac-fone provides a free phone and 500 minutes for the first 5 months and 250 minutes each month thereafter. You can read about the program at www.safelinkwireless.com.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Kindle won't connect

Answer Man

I have a Kindle keyboard e-reader. Supposedly, it is able to connect to the computer so I can manage my book collection. However, when I connect it, it just charges. Is my Kindle defective?

My best guess is that you are using a cable that is either defective or is one of those multi-connection USB cables that just doesn't work very well for the purpose. Try another cable.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Document feeder

Answer Man

I'm thinking of purchasing a new printer. The one I like comes in two versions. The one with a document feeder costs considerably more? Do you think I should buy the better one?

Document feeders can be handy if you often have to copy multi-page documents. Most people don't have the need to do that very often. I have a printer with a document feeder and have only used the feature once in the last three years. I think you should think how often you would use the feature and make your choice based on your need.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Network not recognized by router

Answer Man

I have a Linksys router. When I try to go on the Internet, Linksys doesn't show up in the list of connections. The computer shows a Netgear router, which I don't own, but the computer says "Connected - Internet Access". The connection is very slow. What could be wrong?

It sounds to me as though your router is defective and that you are connecting through a neighbor's network from their wireless signal. The fact that the neighbor lives further away would account for a weaker signal and your computer being slow. Go buy a new router.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Microsoft Offers Windows 10 Free, Even To Pirates

In January, we learned that for one year, Microsoft would offer free Windows 10 upgrades to those running Windows 7, Windows 8.1, and Windows Phone 8.1. Today, at its Windows Hardware Engineering Community (WinHEC) event in Shenzen, China, the company revealed that this deal will be available to pirates worldwide.

Reuters first broke the news by quoting Terry Myerson, Microsoft’s Windows chief: “We are upgrading all qualified PCs, genuine and non-genuine, to Windows 10.” Yet the article’s headline and body focused on China, where Windows piracy rates are particularly high, so we reached out to Microsoft to confirm the scope.

“Anyone with a qualified device can upgrade to Windows 10, including those with pirated copies of Windows,” a Microsoft spokesperson told VentureBeat.

Read the rest of the story > HERE

Credit: venturebeat.com

New tablet

Answer Man

I just bought a new tablet, and I don't know how to use it. A friend hooked up a modem and router so that I will have Wi-Fi in the house. What do I do now?

You probably bought the tablet so you could use the Internet. To do so, you'll need to press your forefinger on the browser (Common browsers on tablets include: Chrome, Internet Explorer and Mozilla Firefox). Apple products use Safari. Tap the blank address line, and a virtual keyboard will appear. Type in what you want to find. You might, for example, type Knitting. Tap the Enter key on the virtual keyboard, and you will be taken to knitting sites.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Forwarding attachments

Answer Man

My son sent 12 pictures as an email attachment. I want to forward the email with the attachments to my daughter. It doesn't seem to work. How can I send the pictures to my daughter?

Open your son's email, and click on "Download all attachments:. The pictures will go into your downloads folder. Create a new email and address it to your daughter. Click on "Add attachments", browse to the downloads folder and select the picture you'd like to attach. When the picture finishes loading, either add more pictures or send the email.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Web site down

Answer Man

I keep trying to reach Yahoo mail without success. Is there a way that I can tell whether their website is up or down?

Try http://www.isitdownrightnow.com/ Then look for the web site you want to see. Yahoo is one of the sites listed, so you can quickly see if it is working.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Image software

Answer Man

Is it true that in Windows 7, 8 and 8.1 there is built in imaging software?

Yes, that is true, and it means that you don't need special imaging programs such as Ghost and True Image. In Windows 8 and 8.1, type "File History" when at the start screen. Then click "File History" again and follow the prompts.

File history will back up your files. However, if you navigate to the bottom of the file history page you will find "System Image Backup". That setting will let you create an image on an external hard drive. You can create separate images on separate drives or do incremental back-up on the same drive.

Monday, March 16, 2015

No Internet

Answer Man

I had to re-install Windows 7 on my netbook, and went to use product activation, but the computer wouldn't connect to the Internet to activate Windows. Do you know why?

If you do a new install from disk, it wipes the drive first, and that takes out your network drivers. You must use another computer to located your computer on the Internet and then download the correct driver. If there is more than one, it might pay to download all listed, and then try each until your network activates.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Cortana App For iOS And Android

There was a time when it seemed that Microsoft was developing its voice-controlled, digital assistant Cortana to draw iPhone and Android users to Windows Phone. That might have even been true, once, but it certainly isn’t the case anymore, as the company is planning a standalone Cortana app for iOS and Android.

Initially compared to Siri and Google Now, Microsoft has been referring to Cortana as a “personal assistant” for some time now. At times, it seems that the company goes out of its way to avoid referring to Cortana as software, preferring to refer to it as “her” and “she” instead. A large part of Cortana’s identity is drawn from the character of the same name in the Halo franchise.

More so than either Siri or Google Now, Cortana makes use of artificial intelligence, drawing from an internal Microsoft project called Einstein. “This kind of technology, which can read and understand email, will play a central role in the next roll out of Cortana, which we are working on now for the fall time frame,” said managing director of Microsoft Research Eric Horvitz, speaking to Reuters.

Read the rest of the story > HERE.

Credit: digitaltrends.com

Restore function - Windows 8

Answer Man

Windows 7 had a restore to an earlier point function that was great to have if the computer ran into some serious problems. Did they do away with the restore function in Windows 8 and 8.1?

No, they didn't do away with it, but it is much more difficult to find. Type System Restore when you are on the Start Screen. Click on Create a Restore Point and then on Yes. Then click on System Restore.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Executive Board Minutes

Oak Run Computer Club – Executive Board Minutes
March 13, 2015

Alan Marcus, President, called the meeting to order at 9:00AM. Members in attendance: Elliott Bogart, Frazer Crane, Ron Kenyon, Bob Leiner, Alan Marcus, Carol Norton, and Linda Tingley.

Secretary’s report read by Carol Norton. No corrections or additions necessary.

Due to the absence of Bob Norton, Carol Norton gave the treasurer’s report. The current balance is $2,086.06.

A motion was made by Frazer Crane, seconded by Ron Kenyon and carried, for Bob Leiner to purchase the necessary batteries for the club’s microphone. Purchase price not to exceed $25.

Two presentations will be given at the March 18 general meeting: “Glary Utilities”, presented by Billy Balch, and “Calibre”, an e-book conversion program, presented by Alan Marcus.

Nick Burke will return for the April 15 general meeting to present a program on “MP3 and Media Player”. Richard Bambridge will be available for the May 20 general meeting to give a presentation on “Apple Watch”.

The meeting adjourned at 9:30AM.

Respectfully submitted,

Carol H. Norton

Mobile Broadband

Answer Man

I thought it might be handy to have a mobile hotspot as opposed to receiving my Internet through Decca or Centurylink. What's your opinion of the advantages and disadvantages?

Here's the most recent cost from Verizon. So, you'll have to compare these costs to your current plan. Remember that mobile broadband connects through cell towers, so your distance from the cell tower and the strength of the signal will vary greatly within the community.

Prepaid Mobile Broadband Plans for 4G LTE Jetpack

Access Fee
Data Allowance
No activation or reconnection fees and no overage charges!

Friday, March 13, 2015

Explorer too small

Answer Man

Whenever I open Internet Explorer 11, it opens as a small screen. What's going on?

IE has a memory. If the screen is closed when it is small, it will open small. The solution is to maximize the screen (you can do that by pressing F11) before you exit. When you open IE again, it should open to full screen size.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Disk Image

Answer Man

I know that I can make a disk image using Ghost or Acronis True Image. Is there a free alternative for Windows 8.1?

Yes there is. Here's how to make an exact image of your "C" drive.
  • Connect back-up drive
  • Type “Power Shell” on start screen
  • Right Click on Power Shell and select “Run as Administrator”
  • Type - wbAdmin start backup -backupTarget:G: -include:C: -allCritical -quiet
  • (if G is not the backup drive letter, insert the letter for your drive)
  • Press “Enter”
Wait until drive is done writing to backup drive

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Remove password requirement in Windows 8.1

Answer Man

In a previous post you showed how to get around the requirement for entering a user password in Windows 7, and previous Window editions, by entering "netplwiz" in the search box. I tried that with Windows 8.1, but it doesn't work.

In Windows 8.1 and the new Windows 10 hold down the Windows key on the keyboard and press the letter R. Type "Control userpasswords2" in the space provided, and press the enter key. Uncheck the box requiring a password, put in your present password twice. Apply and re-start the computer. It should go directly to the start screen without requiring a password.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Jumbled files and photos

Answer Man

I just purchased a new computer. A friend put the documents and photos from my old computer on a flash drive, and then put them on the new machine, but their all in one folder. Thus, the pictures and documents are all mixed together. What do I do now if I want to find anything?

Open the folder your friend put on the new computer. Hold down the CTRL key on the keyboard as you left click on each photo that should be included in the same category - such as "Trip to Hawaii". Release the keys. Hold down CTRL and press the letter C to copy the pictures to the clipboard. Find the Pictures folder and left click to open it. Right click. Select new, and folder and type in name such as Hawaii Trip. Press the enter key on the keyboard. Open the folder you just created. Press CTRL and V to copy the selected photos to the pictures folder. Repeat the process for the rest of the pictures. Use the same process to copy and move documents to the documents folder.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Computer down to a crawl

Answer Man

My computer is so slow that I could fall asleep waiting for anything to happen. I had someone clean out the start menu. The hard drive is only half full. I have used disk clean-up to get rid of temporary files. The computer has been defragged. Is there anything else I should try?

I would try running a program such as Malwarebytes to clean out any malware. If that doesn't solve the problem, you might restore the computer to an earlier point or do a complete recovery which will re-install the operating system. In rare cases, the drive must be wiped clean before the operating system is re-installed.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Tablet won't access the Internet

Answer Man

I have two computers, an older desktop and a new Surface tablet. The desktop is wired to my router and connects to the Internet without difficulty. The tablet doesn't show any wireless connections. I'm using Century Link, and they provided me with a combo modem-router. What do you suppose is wrong?

It sounds to me as if the wireless part of the modem-router is malfunctioning, and you should call Century Link for a replacement.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Dating site problems

Answer Man

I have been using several dating sites and would normally get 20 or more emails from those sites daily. Suddenly, all those emails have ceased. I went on Match.com and inserted my login name and password, and they were rejected. I clicked where it said "Forgot Password", but nothing was sent to my email. Is some computer feature blocking my emails?

It sounds to me as though you have forgotten to pay your dues to the dating services. Most of those services want money in advance or they cease your membership. To ascertain the problem in your case, you can call the services. Here are phone numbers for three of the services:
Match.com 800-926-2824; Chemistry 866-610-6338; Plenty of Fish 604-692-6338
(Be prepared for long wait times).

Friday, March 6, 2015

Computers without bloatware

Answer Man

I know that computer manufacturers often include programs that the user don't need and don't want. I have heard such programs referred to as bloatware. Can I buy a computer without bloatware installed?

Manufacturers install bloatware because they get paid to include it in new computers. Bloatware uses up hard drive space and slows down computers. You can buy new computers, that are free of bloatware by going to the following address:

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Windows 10 free for Preview Edition users

Answer Man

If I install the Windows 10 Preview edition now, will I be able to upgrade my computer to the RTM (Release to Manufacturing) edition for free?

"Super Site for Windows" had this to say about the subject:
This week, Microsoft actually answered that question with a qualified yes, which is somewhat surprising in its own right. But my advice is to not worry about such things: When the RTM version of Windows 10 comes out, you'll want to do a clean install anyway.

The background: On December 5, someone asked Microsoft's Gabe Aul — he's emerged as the face of the Windows Technical Preview — whether testers would be "able to update to the RTM version [of Windows 10] when it ships? Mr. Aul responded in the affirmative: "Yes, that is our intent."

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Apple And Google Plan Fix For 'Freak' Security Bug

Apple and Google said on Tuesday that they have developed fixes to mitigate the newly uncovered 'Freak' security flaw affecting mobile devices and Mac computers. The vulnerability in web encryption technology could enable attackers to spy on communications of users of Apple's Safari browser and Google Android browser, according to researchers who uncovered the flaw.

Apple spokesman Ryan James said the computer had developed a software update to remediate the vulnerability, which would be pushed out next week. Google spokeswoman Liz Markman said the company had also developed a patch, which it has provided to partners. She declined to say when users could expect to receive those upgrades. Google typically does not directly push out Android software updates. Instead they are handled by device makers and mobile carriers.

The Washington Post reported that the bug left users of Apple and Google devices vulnerable to cyberattack when visiting hundreds of thousands of websites, including Whitehouse.gov, NSA.gov and FBI.gov. Whitehouse.gov and FBI.gov have been fixed, but NSA.gov remains vulnerable, the paper cited Johns Hopkins cryptographer Matthew D. Green as saying.

A group of nine researchers discovered that they could force web browsers to use an form of encryption that was intentionally weakened to comply with U.S. government regulations that ban American companies from exporting the strongest encryption standards, according to the paper.

Once they caused the site to use the weaker export encryption standard, they were then able to break the encryption within a few hours. That could allow hackers to steal data and potentially launch attacks on the sites themselves by taking over elements on a page, the newspaper reported.

Markman said that Google advises all websites to disable support for the less-secure, export-grade encryption. "Android's connections to most websites - which include Google sites, and others without export certificates - are not subject to this vulnerability," she added.

The group of researchers dubbed the flaw Freak, for "Factoring RSA-EXPORT Keys," according to a website where they described the vulnerability.

Credit: reuters.com

Buy on Craig's List

Answer Man

I saw some tires I wanted to buy on Craig's List. I clicked "Reply" and saw a notice that said to copy a real long address into an e-mail. I use Decca Mail and have no idea how to proceed.

After you click "Reply", a drop down box will appear. The seller's e-mail address will appear in blue. Hold down the CTRL key on the keyboard and, at the same time press the letter "C". That will copy the seller's address to an invisible place known as the clip board. Open your Decca Mail and click in the TO section. When the cursor flashes there, press CTRL and the letter V. That will copy the address from the clipboard. Then, just write what you want to say to the seller and click the Send button.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Buy a new GPS

Answer Man

I bought a GPS about 7 year ago. It was very expensive. Would I gain anything by purchasing a new GPS?

Yes you would. New GPS models have much faster processors, usually come with lifetime updates, have many built in points of interest and have come way down in price. I suggest you only purchase name brands because lesser known brands may not have the best mapping software.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Fake Microsoft Techs

Answer Man

I frequently get calls from someone who says that their Microsoft Techs and that my computer is infected with all kinds of viruses. How do they know what's on my computer?

They don't know. These scammers call thousands of people, and some, even in Oak Run, have become victims of their scams. They are not from Microsoft. Microsoft doesn't call individuals.

The scammers want to trick you into letting them get into your computer. Then they can lock your files and charge you a ransom to release the files. When you get such calls, hang up immediately.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Road Trip suggestions

Answer Man

I would like to find a site that has suggestions of things to see in various areas of the country. Most of the sites I have seen are two complex or require too much fiddling around to find what you want. Have you any suggestions?

I do. Try https://roadtrippers.com/welcome. Simply type in a location to see the local attractions, etc. Try inserting a place you may not know much about. I tried Corpus Christi, TX, and was surprised at the number and variety of suggestions.

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