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Archive for the ‘File & Disk Management’ Category



Big Mistakes

Friday, November 19th, 2004

Q:
I was working on a document the other day and made a big mistake. I messed up the entire document and it took forever to get it back to the way it was. Is there a better way?

A:
Yes. First, if you make a mistake, hit Ctrl+Z . In most programs, that will undo whatever it

Floppy Copy

Thursday, November 18th, 2004

Floppy Copy

Floppy drives are slowly becoming extinct, so this tip is for us sentimental types who still love our floppies…

Ever need to copy the contents from one floppy disk to another? It’s easy! Here’s how:

1. Put the disk you would like to copy into your floppy drive (usually your “A:” Drive.)
2. Double-click the MyComputer Icon on your desktop.
3. Right click your A: Drive… Continue reading

Drag & Drop Opens

Thursday, November 18th, 2004

Drag & Drop Opens

Here’s a quick little one for ya.

Did you know that most programs allow you to open files by dragging & dropping them into their window? Well, they do. Really.

For example, let’s say you have a picture file sitting on your desktop and your imaging software is already running. Just drag & drop the file into the program and it… Continue reading

Quicker File Access

Wednesday, November 17th, 2004

When most of us go to open a file, we click the File menu, Open (OK, some of us use the little toolbar button), then we scroll along hunting for the file so we can double-click it.

Well, if you have a ton of documents in a folder, this can get time consuming. If you know the exact name of the file, you can simply type it in the little… Continue reading

Control Your Folders (and more)

Wednesday, November 17th, 2004

Control Your Folders (and more)

Do you ever find yourself scrolling through a huge folder ? Well, if you need to get to the beginning or the end quickly, just press Ctrl+Home . If you want to get to the end, click Ctrl+End .

Hey, that’s not all!

This little trick works on more than just folders. If you use the Home key in a word… Continue reading

Purge Your Clipboard of Large Files

Wednesday, November 17th, 2004

Purge Your Clipboard of Large Files

When you use the “copy” or “cut” command, it copies information to your Windows clipboard . That information is kept in your RAM memory until it’s replaced by something else.

Unfortunately, if you’re copying large items, this can adversely affect your computer’s performance. How? Well, that large file, picture, object, or whatever it was that you copied is floating around… Continue reading

Rename Several Files at Once

Wednesday, November 17th, 2004

Rename Several Files at Once

Have you ever been working on a project with information on several files? Maybe it was an annual report with files from different departments. Or perhaps you unloaded the pictures from your camera and would like to find the ones of your grandchildren easier. This tip works with every type of file and will help you give them all the same name. I’m sure you… Continue reading

Hidden Temporary Files

Tuesday, November 16th, 2004

Q:
For some reason when I went to open some of my documents, some of them came up with this little ~$ sign before the name of the document omitting the first one or two letters of the document. What does this mean?

A:
That is a hidden temporary file that is created when you have a document open. It’s where all the… Continue reading

Use Internet Explorer To Open Files

Tuesday, November 16th, 2004

Use Internet Explorer To Open Files

If you’re like me, you always have a web browser open. Well, if that browser is Internet Explorer, you could be doing more with it than just surfing the web!

Internet Explorer can also open all sorts of files. Just drag and drop a file into your Internet Explorer window and watch it open. I use this all… Continue reading

Back It Up!

Tuesday, November 16th, 2004

Back It Up!

As most of you know, I recommend backing up your computer on a regular basis. Since I’m always harping about it, I thought it might be a good idea to actually explain how to do this!

First, what exactly does it mean to “backup” your files?

To backup simply means to

File Name Characters to Avoid

Tuesday, November 16th, 2004

Ever try to save a file only to be told that the file name is “invalid” due to a character issue? It’s not you, nor a jab at your personality, I promise!

So, to avoid future problems, I give you a list of characters to avoid:

* Asterisk

< >[ ] Brackets

= Equal sign

+ Plus sign

” Quotes

\ / Slashes

, . : ; Comma, Period… Continue reading

Clean Your Desk(top)

Tuesday, November 16th, 2004

Clean Your Desk(top)

Have too many icons on your desktop? You probably only have a few that you really use on a regular basis, so why not keep the other ones handy, but hidden?

Well, it can be done by putting a little folder on your desktop and dragging any infrequently used shortcut icons to it. Here’s how:

1. Right-click the desktop and select, New, Folder .… Continue reading

Drag & Drop files

Monday, November 15th, 2004

Q:
You are always telling us to “drag & drop” files and stuff. This probably sounds stupid, but what does that mean?

A:
Dragging and dropping is easy. It’s a procedure where you grab something (selected text, a file, a picture, or whatever) and drop it into a new location.

To drag and drop, click the item you want to drag to… Continue reading

What is a Wizard?

Monday, November 15th, 2004

Q:
What is a Wizard?

A:
When you hear someone refer to a wizard, they aren’t talking about Merlin, Oz, Gandalf, or Dumbledore, although, in a way, there might be a similarity in function.

A Wizard is a tool to guide you through the steps of a process or task by asking a series of questions or presenting options. A Wizard might… Continue reading

Bigger Thumbnails

Monday, November 15th, 2004

Bigger Thumbnails

Since Windows ME we’ve had the option of having folders in thumbnail view. This creates a little picture preview in the folder. Very handy if you have gigs of pictures on your hard drive. Have you ever wished that they were bigger? Well then, you’re in luck today because I’m gonna tell you how.

This will require going into your registry, so proceed with caution.

To start the… Continue reading

Make Your Own Document Shortcuts

Monday, November 15th, 2004

They often call me the “Hotkey Master” around here because I like to use keyboard shortcuts. Well, I found out something cool in Windows Vista and XP—I can create my own document short cuts! I have a few files that I’m always using and having hotkeys for my shortcuts is a real time saver.

First thing to do is create a shortcut on your desktop. Bring the… Continue reading

How to Empty My Recent Documents

Monday, November 15th, 2004

Q:
In Windows XP, is there a way to empty “My Recent Documents” or to just get rid of it ?

A:
“My Recent Documents” holds the last 15 items that you opened. You can delete individual items in the usual manner (Right-click then choose “Delete”), but the number stays at fifteen. That’s because the contents are in a hidden file called “Recent” that is… Continue reading

Hitting the Target

Monday, November 15th, 2004

Have you ever needed to get at a program’s folder? Usually, it involves opening Windows Explorer , then the Program Files folder, then sifting around through all the sub-folders until you find what you’re looking for. Heck, even then you sometimes have to sort through more sub-folder before you actually get to where you want to go.

There’s gotta be a better way, right?… Continue reading

Change Your Search Companion

Monday, November 15th, 2004

Change Your Search Companion

If you search for a file in XP you’ll notice the little dog at the bottom. Rover is there to help you sniff out files you need. Well, what if you don’t want him sniffing around? Maybe you’re a cat person. Did you know you can change the Search Companion? Here’s how…

Go to Start/Search and click “Change Preferences”. If you don’t want any character, choose… Continue reading

Find that File

Monday, November 15th, 2004


Q:
HELP! I lost a file and now I can’t find it!

A:
So, you’ve misplaced a file. It’s easier to find than you think.

Click the Start button and select Find or Search . A screen will open up that allows you to search for files. (If you’re in Windows Vista the Search Box is directly above the Start… Continue reading

Hidden Files

Monday, November 15th, 2004

Hidden Files

Windows is keeping something from you. It’s for your own good that Hidden Files exist, but should you ever need to access them, then this tip is for you!

In Windows XP it’s as simple as opening the folder in question and going to Tools>Folder Options. Once there, click the View tab and select the little dot next to Show Hidden Files. That oughta do… Continue reading

Frolicking in the Recycle Bin

Monday, November 15th, 2004

Here are a few things you can do to make your recycling experience more enjoyable:

No Confirmations:

Ever notice how every time you delete something, Windows asks you if you would really like to do it? If you find yourself shouting “YES, I wouldn’t have hit delete if I didn’t want to delete the stupid thing,” then you may want to disable the deletion confirmation.

Software Installation Options

Monday, November 15th, 2004

Q:
Sometimes when I install software, I get options for “typical”, “custom”, or “compact” installations. How do I know which one to use?

A:
I don’t know about most of our readers, but I generally make my selection after a series of coin flips. If my lucky penny says “custom”, then who am I to question it?

Ok, Ok. That may not… Continue reading

CD Burning 101

Monday, November 15th, 2004

Most CD writers come with some kind of CD writing software. Since this varies from manufacturer to manufacturer, this is going to be a VERY basic lesson. It should help get you started though.

Not sure where your CD burning program is? It should be lurking somewhere under the Start menu, Programs (it’s not necessarily on your desktop or quick launch toolbar)

Record over a CD-RW

Monday, November 15th, 2004

Q:
How do I record over a CD-RW? I tried to record over it, but that didn’t work it says to make it a blank CD first.

A:
We all know the difference between a CD-R and a CD-RW right? Once you fill up a CD-R, that’s it, but a CD-RW allows you to re-write data and use the disk over and over… Continue reading

Check Available Disk Space

Monday, November 15th, 2004

Check Available Disk Space

We get readers wanting to know how do do this all the time.

To see how much space you have left, open the My Computer icon on your desktop (or under the Start menu for XP users) and right-click the drive you are curious about (for most people, this would be their C: drive, but this trick works with any drive). Select Properties from the resulting… Continue reading

Selection Savvy

Monday, November 15th, 2004

Ever need to make more than one choice in a list box? (A list box is basically an item by item list. You’ve probably seen them on web pages or in computer programs you’ve used. A lot of E-mail programs use a list box to display its list of messages.)

Here’s how:

1. Click the first item on the list you would like to… Continue reading

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