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Read Before You Try

Tuesday, July 12th, 2005

It’s a good idea to read through a tip BEFORE you try it.

That way you’ll know if the tip is beyond your ability, or may do something you don’t want done.

Reading through will also let you know if you have the right operating system and software. For instance, if a tip won’t work with AOL or other web-based email, we will usually let… Continue reading

Task Manager Tabs are Missing

Saturday, June 18th, 2005

When I bring up XP Task Manager (Ctrl+Alt+Del) all the tabs are missing. How can I get them back?

Normally you see tabs for Applications, Processes, Performance, Networking, and Users.

So why do the tabs go away and how can you get them back?

Well, what happened is that you probably double clicked the border around the tabs—this puts TM into a compact mode.

To… Continue reading

Windows Genuine Advantage

Thursday, June 2nd, 2005

When you go out to Microsoft to get downloads you will be faced with the Windows Genuine Advantage validation check.

This mandatory ActiveX update makes sure that your copy of Windows XP/2000 is genuine before you can access any downloads.

Even a genuine copy of Windows can not register properly. If this happens you’ll need manually enter your registration number. It will be on the manual that came with your… Continue reading

Problem Solving Success

Thursday, June 2nd, 2005

How do you react to computer problems? Do you sit back and think about the last thing you did? Do you panic, frantically pressing buttons? Do you just shut off your computer and call your “computer guru”? Do you shoot off an email to WorldStart?

Successful problem solving requires the right state of mind. It can make the difference between minutes and days. It can prevent a small problem from… Continue reading

Login after Screen Saver

Thursday, June 2nd, 2005

Does your login screen come up every time you come out of your screen saver?

If you don’t want this to happen, then right-click your desktop and choose “Properties”, click the “Screen Saver” tab and uncheck “On resume, password protect”.

~ David

David Samuel Thomas… Continue reading

VoIP 9-1-1 Issues

Saturday, May 14th, 2005

Broadband phone companies (VoIP) are popping up all over the place allowing consumers to save money on calls.

Many of these internet-based services are exempt from the 911 system. One of the most popular states in their terms of service that 911 dialing will be routed through the general telephone number for the local emergency service provider (which may not be answered outside business hours).

In addition, the caller’s phone… Continue reading

Using the Message Board

Saturday, May 7th, 2005

How do I use the Message Board?

As many of you know, we have a WorldStart Message Board where you can ask questions and interact with other readers. It is yet another free resource we offer to you. The writers and editors of this newsletter often don’t have time to answer individual questions, but the Message Board is full of people eager to help.

Being on

Demo Versions

Saturday, April 16th, 2005

Many times when you buy software it will also come with demo/trial versions of other programs.

These may automatically install with the program you paid for (this is called “foistware”) or you may see the other programs listed on the installation interface.

This often causes confusion if you run one of the demo programs and think “Hey, I paid for this software, what’s with the 15 day trial?”

If you… Continue reading

Instant Messenger Vulnerabilites

Wednesday, April 6th, 2005

There are just a few things worse than when I write an article about how wonderful some program or service is, only to find a big nasty foot in my mouth a week or two later. Well back on March 10, 2005 I reviewed Trillian, an IM (Instant Messenger) manager, as a download of the week. You can use Trillian with pretty much every IM program such as AOL, Yahoo… Continue reading

Lost Run Box

Tuesday, March 29th, 2005

In many tips you tell us to go to Start then “Run” but my computer doesn’t have Run. What do I do?

The good news is that you can control what items show up in your XP Start Menu. We’ve covered this before.

Just right click the Start button and choose “Properties”. Next click the “Customize” button then the “Advanced” tab.

Under… Continue reading

Proper Shut Down

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2005

When I turn on my computer it says that Windows didn’t shut down properly then it goes into Scan Disk. Why is this happening?

Some of our experienced readers may be chuckling out there, but this is a real problem. We all know how to turn on our computers, but not everyone knows that there’s a

Six Seconds to Shut Down

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2005

Have you ever tried to shut your computer down, only to have it hang on the shut down screen? Or maybe it’s locked up beyond any CTRL-ALT-DEL help. You may find that hitting the power button doesn’t seem to do anything.

If you really need to force a shutdown via the power switch, press it in and hold for 6 seconds. That should turn the computer off.

Only do this… Continue reading

Copy from PDF Documents

Tuesday, March 8th, 2005

When I try to select a passage from a PDF document to copy, my cursor becomes a little hand that opens and closes as I click the left mouse button. I can print them but how do I select and copy?

The Portable Document Format is a great way to make sure that a page looks the same way to the recipient as… Continue reading

Make Your Own Characters

Tuesday, March 8th, 2005

Do you have a company logo or symbol that you would love to use as a font character? Maybe you are from another planet and you want to send a letter home but don’t have your native alphabet. Whatever the case, you can do it with the XP Private Character Editor.

The PCE features basic tools to help you create up to 6,400 unique characters for use in your font… Continue reading

After updating to XP Service Pack 2 when I go to install some programs I get a message that says, “The system file is not suitable for running MS-DOS and Microsoft Windows applications.” What’s going on?

For some reason the installation of SP2 can cause a file called “AUTOEXEC.NT” to be corrupted or deleted. This file is part of the Windows 16-bit subsystem and usually lives… Continue reading

Change XP User picture

Thursday, February 17th, 2005

Is there a way to change the picture that appears when I log on to my XP computer? I don’t want a stupid rubber ducky as my picture.

But Ernie says they make bath time so much fun. OK, how about a chess set? A sunflower? No? How about any picture from your hard drive? Now we’re talkin’.

Go to Start/Control Panel then “User Accounts”. Select… Continue reading

XP Password Recovery Disk

Tuesday, February 15th, 2005

It could happen–you could forget your password and not be able to log in. What would you do? Try the name of every pet you ever owned? your favorite sports team? Still no luck? If you had created a Password Recovery Disk you wouldn’t be in this jam.

You’ll need a floppy drive for this one. “But dude, I got a Dell and it ain’t got no floppy!”… Continue reading

Create a New User Account

Tuesday, February 15th, 2005

We share a computer in my house and I’m tired of the settings getting messed with. There’s a way to set up different users, right?

If your family shares one computer and one user account then you know how annoying it is to turn it on and see that all the icons are moved around and your wallpaper is changed. You go to get online and… Continue reading

XP Home vs. XP Pro

Saturday, February 12th, 2005

What’s the difference between Windows XP Home and XP Pro?

Both flavors of Win XP have the same applications and multimedia features, but Pro also includes corporate network support, backup , and security like those found in Windows 2000 Pro. Every feature found in Home Edition should be found in Pro, but since Pro is designed primarily for corporate networking it… Continue reading

One Button Clipboard Viewer

Saturday, February 12th, 2005

I’m a copy and paste fiend. It goes with the job I guess. Sometimes I’ll copy something and get called away from my computer, then come back to wonder if I copied it or not. Sure I could just re-copy it, but instead I made a shortcut button on my toolbar that I can click to see what’s on the clipboard.

Here’s how to do it in Windows 2000 &amp

Wrap that Notepad (and change your font too)

Saturday, February 12th, 2005

Sometimes when you’re looking for something the old saying applies, “If it was a snake it’d bite ya!”

Well, I had one of those moments with Notepad today. I often use Notepad to remove formatting when I’m copying and pasting, or to make little notes, or for HTML coding but always found it annoying that each paragraph became one long line. Who wants to scroll and scroll and scroll… Continue reading

Crying over spilled milk

Thursday, January 27th, 2005

Much to the dismay of my wife my laptop became an extension of my body. With my wireless network I could work on projects and grab data off of my other computers from anywhere in the house, freeing me from the confines of my lonely basement. I was in cyber bliss and me, my laptop, and home network were ready for any challenge the world of technology could throw at… Continue reading

Low Battery Alarm

Thursday, January 27th, 2005

Let’s face it—just because something is in plain site doesn’t mean you’ll pay attention to it. That’s why Windows XP has an alarm to warn you when your battery is low. Best of all, it can be adjusted to suite your needs.

Go to Start/Control Panel/Power Options and look for the “Alarms” tab.

Check the box “Activate low battery alarm… Continue reading

Avoid Win XP Re-activation

Tuesday, January 25th, 2005

The time may come that you’ll need to reinstall your Windows XP. It could happen. Maybe you’ll add a new motherboard or hard drive. Maybe you’ll get constant errors and problems that just won’t go away. Or perhaps you’re a neat freak who wants to rid yourself of clutter and start fresh with a clean operating system. If you do reinstall Windows XP, then you’ll need to re-activate it too—that… Continue reading

What’s Your “Uptime”

Saturday, January 22nd, 2005

Win 98 users: ever wonder how long your computer’s been on? Go to Start/Programs/Accessories/System Tools and select “System Information”. On the window look next to “Uptime” to see how many seconds, minutes, hours, and days that since your last restart. This is especially useful for those of you who keep your computer on 24/7

Entering Serial Numbers

Saturday, January 22nd, 2005

When entering the serial number for a program you’re installing, use the number keys that are above the letter keys on your keyboard. Sometimes the numbers on the keypad at the right side of your keyboard are interpreted as different characters. This will prevent the serial number from being accepted even though it looks right… Continue reading

Always On Laptop Power Meter

Saturday, January 22nd, 2005

OK notebook/laptop computer users—here’s one especially for you.

You carry your computer around all day for business, surf the web via Wi-Fi at the coffee shop, plug it into a projector for Power Point presentations, etc.

If you’re smart, you recharge it while driving to your next appointment, carry an AC adapter with you, or use a “docking station” while at your desk. But how do you know how much… Continue reading

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