Friday, December 31, 2010

Check Those External Links

I owe a big thank you to one of my readers of my Photography by KML blog.

I was having big issues, and I didn't even know it.

It seems that my blog was giving malware warnings to anyone who tried to view it.

It had been doing this for a few days.

What a good way to loose readers and traffic and put my reputation in a ditch.

Doug, over at Doug's Missoula Lifestyle Montana Living blog, contacted me to let me know what was going on.

And am I ever thankful that he did - I would never want to pass any computer problems on to anyone, and that warning certainly looked like I was a scary place to visit.

My photo blog is almost four years old, and I had some pretty old links on there to other blogs and directories.

I was pretty diligent about keeping up with the housekeeping of the old blogs, but I never gave a thought to the directories.

The bad link was to a photo directory that either went defunct or was corrupted by hackers.

Their website had that warning, but when my blog website was opened in a browser, it was also given a warning, because of my link to it.

Guilty by association - I learned a good lesson.

Check ALL the external links on a regular basis - it could come and bite you in the behind if you don't.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Where Has All the Software Gone?

There was a time in the not too distant past, that when you entered a computer or office store, you would be faced with many shelves and choices of software for your personal computer.

Have you checked these same stores lately?

Only a handful of choices remain, and they are mostly bookkeeping or virus protection programs.

No more going to the store to purchase a program on a CD with the printed documentation that can be installed on your computer.

Now you must buy it online - mostly in a downloadable format.

No hard copy on CD and no documentation or books to figure out how to use it.

If your hard drive bites the dust or you buy a new computer - no problem, just go online and pay for it again to download it.


Some of that software is expensive so downloading it again is not always an option.

I try to keep a file on my computer with the original download in it so if I need it again it is there.

But that doesn't always work as sometimes the software needs some kind of installer through the merchant that just isn't available when you need to reinstall it again - it's a one shot deal.

I must say - I miss the days of having my CD's handy when I need to "fix" some corrupted program or simply reinstall it.

But I guess things just have to keep changing - even if they are not for the better.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Internet Advertising

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of ClickBooth. All opinions are 100% mine.

We are all familiar with Internet advertising.

Some of them are subtle and are just small little ads in the sidebars or along the bottom of pages or posts.

And some of them are quite obvious - right at the top and big and flashing.

As with anything, it takes all kinds, and it's good to know there are so many choices when it comes to advertising - for both the advertiser and the publisher.

The advertisers design their ads to catch your attention in hopes that you click on one of them and see what they have to offer.

The publisher also hopes that you click on one of them - he earns money from the clicks that come from his site.

Everyone wants us to click on the ads - and sometimes those deals are just what the consumer is looking for, and the click happens.

Everyone is happy then.

But when browsers just click on the ads for the "fun" of it, it becomes a problem for the advertiser.

He is paying for that click, and gets nothing out of it.  The publisher will get credit for it, but it becomes a sour deal when those empty clicks happen over and over again.

That's where a Clickbooth CPC service comes in.

They have a CPA program set up that only charges the advertiser when an action is performed on his site when the browser arrives through a "click".

This is certainly more cost effective for the advertiser - no more empty clicks for him.

Once again, it keeps both the advertiser and publisher happy and hopefully it makes for a happy customer too.

So, Google AdWords, Meet Your Competition: Clickbooth is the wave of the future for affiliate marketing.

They are one of the major networks available for providing this service to their publishers which provides more diversity for everyone.

They surpass the industry standards and their ads will soon be seen on,, and - keep an eye out for them - and remember - you read it here first!

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Facebook Changes

I am just getting back from working on my Facebook page.

I set it up almost 2 years ago to use in conjunction with my photo website.

As I added more blogs, I loved how I was able to interface them with the feeds and the boxes and the tabs.

I had everything in one place and used several apps to update and post to my wall.

All was going well - I loved using Facebook.

Then they did away with the boxes.

OK, I could handle that, just added a few tabs to take their place.

Then they slowly started removing some of the availability of the apps.

I could get around that too.

They changed the wall style and hid some of the tabs.

No problem - they were still there, just not out in full view.

Now they are changing the whole profile, and stupid me had to go check it out.

I wanted to see what I would have to "fix" this time.

Well - everything is gone now - no tabs, no links, none of my blogs are there or any of my friend's blogs that I loved to browse through.

And there is no going back.

Once I hit that button to preview the new changes, that was it.

I am now stuck with it.

I am thoroughly disgusted with these changes.

Everything is gone that I built on my page.

It really sucks and I don't see the use of dealing with it in the same way I have used it in the past.

I have set up a page for my Photos by KML site only that will update from the photo blog.

But that is the only one that will show, as I can only link to that one blog - it is more of a business page.

It still has the old look to it - but I wonder how long that will last.

But I suppose - this is a free site to use - you get what you pay for.

I welcome you to "like" my facebook page at the above link, and thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Automatic Updates

It seems that every program on our computers that connects to the internet wants to automatically update itself when they get the call from their creators.

Well, I do not like this at all.

Most of them have the courtesy to ask before they do, but not all of them do.

The operating system and the virus ones both do as they want, when they want, and I really don't mind those ones.

They just slow the system down as they update, so it would be nice to know they are working instead of just having them "running quietly" in the background.

If for some reason your computer gets any kind of malware or virus software on it, some of them will want to "update" too.

One of the computers in our house has a "virus protection" program that wants to automatically run and update - only it is not a legitimate virus protection program.

Not sure when it "became" an icon on the desktop or from where it came, but it needed to be removed.

The virus scanner and malware scanner didn't catch it, but I know it didn't belong there - we never purchased or installed this program.

We tend to be quite wary as we browse the internet, and this was a surprise.

They are getting trickier so we need to keep aware!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Gadgets for TV Too

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of GlideTV. All opinions are 100% mine.

TV is certainly not what it use to be.

There are many new ways to view TV these days - at the time you want, where you want, and what you want.

Who would have thought as a kid growing up forty years ago that you watch TV programs this way?

One of the new gadgets designed for TV is one that is called GlideTV.

It combines the technology in a computer with the smarts of the new HDTV to deliver quite a new experience.

Many traditional TV viewers now use the Internet TV to watch their favorite shows.

But that involves staying seated at your computer - sometimes not in the most comfortable chairs either.

This new TV gadget lets you watch that same Internet TV from the comfort of your couch.

The handheld touch pad uses wireless technology to find and watch your favorite Internet TV programs on your HDTV.

In fact you can watch any online video content on your TV, and it is compatible with both PC's and Mac's.

My husband would love to have this technology at his fingertips - You Tube is a favorite of his and viewing it on the TV would only make it better.

 "Like" GlideTV on Facebook and enter to win one of these cool GlideTV Navigators.

Be sure to check them out!

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Thursday, December 9, 2010

New Blog Design

First, I must apologize to my readers for the mess that was my blog during most of yesterday.

I had been using one of the free templates that designers offer online.

From the mess, it seems that most of it was constructed from images that were hosted on another server by the web designer.

Well, the bandwith of that user had gone over their limit, so the images were no longer available.

I guess I learned a good lesson today - you get what you pay for!

I have decided to go with one of the templates that blogger offers for now.

After the holidays I will search around for something different.

Or I will give it a try on my own.

Depends on how hard it all is!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

New Tablets

There have been some new devices on the market lately that have been catching my eye.

I have always been interested in those e-readers that can hold hundreds of books, and I keep telling myself that someday, when I have more time for reading, I am going to get one.

Now, enter these new tablet devices.

No two are the same - and they all offer different features.

Some just sit on the counter or desktop and stream info from a Wifi connection.

Some have e-readers in them (nice!)

Some have cameras in them (very nice!)

And some are just like a laptop without all the bulk.

They are very portable - using wifi internet connections everywhere.

Some fit in your pocket, others in a shoulder bag.

All different sizes, features, and price ranges.

If I keep waiting, as I have regarding the e-reader, there will soon be one that does everything - that will make the choosing a lot easier.

But it does make one wonder, what will they come up with next?

It is a grand time we live in!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Keep the CD Drives Empty

One of the cameras that I use from time to time is one that requires mini CD's to record and store the images.

I find it easier to pop the CD's into the drive on the CPU than to hook up the USB cord to get the images onto the computer.

Well, since I only use this camera occasionally, I tend to forget the CD is in the drive and it just sits in there.

Now, this is not a problem for normal operation of the computer or for booting up or shutting it down.

But, when I hook up my other camera by USB cord and try to transfer the images to the computer, the whole system freezes.

And I spend time trying to figure out why - the computer won't even shut down properly.

And then it dawns on me - is there a CD in the D drive slot.

I look to my left and see the empty CD case that confirms my suspicions.

After rebooting the system and removing the CD, everything works just like it is supposed to.

There must be some glitch or conflict in the programs that upload the images.

I am not going to even try to figure that one out, but I really must remember to keep those drives empty.

I would write myself a note, but I know I would just forget to look at that too.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Why Google

In my opinion, I think that if anyone is going to be doing anything at all online, it is important to have an account with Google.

They offer so many services - with the biggest one being email, for the average user.

If you like to take videos and upload them online, they have the market on that with their youtube service.

Many bloggers use their blogging service.

Many others store and use picasa for their photo sharing.

All of their services are free.

You can even use their services to make money with their adsense program.

If you have done a search on the internet, chances are you have already used one of their services.

One thing I do like to keep in mind though, being that they are a free service.

At any time they can stop offering a service or change how it works.

So keeping backups of what you have with them is a good idea - especially for the bloggers.

But that is for another post.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Bookmarks in Browser

On my older computer I have been getting a message about the browser bring unable to find certain bookmarks.

I do admit that it has been a while since I went through the hundreds of bookmarks that I have stored in folders in my firefox browser.

I guess they can go bad, and the browser recognizes them when it is loading to browse online.

Over the years I have bookmarked a huge number of websites, and I know that on occasion, when I try an older one, they come back with an error and the pages are no longer around.

When the browser is searching to load these bookmarks when it is opened, it takes forever - certainly the sign of a problem.

Guess I need to do some housecleaning in the bookmarks section.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Keeping up With Virus Software

We have several computers in our house, and they are not all on the same renewal time for their virus software.

Three are on one license, and three are on another one that expires sometime after the new year.

I use the Norton Internet Security for the virus protection and the firewall.

I do not want the 360 protection software or any other upgrade they keep trying to force on me.

And it costs the same price as the 1 year subscription renewal so I am sure they get many takers on their offer.

The one I use already takes too much control of my computer, I can only imagine what the upgrade does.

Seeing the list of all its "accomplishments" really scared me - I would never be able to get into my computer if I installed it.

My son has the Vista operating system on his, and I find that quite restricting - I wouldn't want him to make it more so with this upgrade.

Hopefully they just keep letting us renew each year, but I think that option will be going away in the future.

I dread the day we HAVE to do that upgrade.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

New Game System

For years our family has used the Playstation console to play video games.

The family has tons of games - most of the ones from the older console can be used on the newer machine.

Well, the current unit has begun to have a few problems.

Perhaps from too much use or just age itself, so the search began for a new console.

If we stayed with our current brand, the unit was going to cost between $350-$400.

We didn't see much use in picking up another used system like we have because it would be just as old as the one we already use.

My son decided that since he was buying it, he was going for the best deal he could find.

We now have an Xbox 360.

I really don't see much difference between it and the Playstation.

The graphics are a bit better.

Storage space on the hard drive is easier to use than the individual cards on the old system.

It was quite a bit less expensive for this system.

And I really like the wireless controllers. The rechargeable batteries last quite a while in them too.

Even with the hard drive, I don't see where this system is any faster than the old one though.

And the biggest problem we have - we don't have many games to chose from in our house at the moment.

But, as long as everyone is happy, I guess that is all that matters.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Blog Clean-up

This blog is only a few months old, so there isn't a whole lot of cleaning up I need to do with it.

My main blog, Photography by KML, has been in existence for almost 4 years.

My second blog, Let's Jump Together, has been around for almost three, and my third blog, Frugal Healthy Choices, will be two this winter.

Since I am not really big on change, the photo blog has kept itself pretty much the same, adding more to the sidebar as I went along.

Some of the stuff on there was pretty old.

Some of the links no longer existed.

It needed major work, so some house keeping was on the agenda.

The Let's Jump blog had only a few links that needed removing, and the Healthy blog was still looking good.

Hard to believe so much "junk" had accumulated on it.

The search engines frown upon bad links so it is important to keep up with the housekeeping.

I'm sure there are some bad links left on some of the old blog posts, but with almost 600 posts on that blog alone, I think I am not going to worry about them too much.

Perhaps someday when I don't have anything else to do I can start in on it, but I don't see that happening in the near future, or far future either for that matter.

Hopefully the search engines will just overlook the old ones.

Monday, October 11, 2010

System Battery

Just when one computer starts to feel better, another one in the household begins to have problems.

For the last week, my husband's computer, which is about the same age as my back-up computer, has not been keeping time.

This machine, about 10 years old, is used mostly to browse the internet.

Plenty of storage space, and not a lot of programs on this machine.

Now, you would think that the system clock would be updated each time the machine is connected to the internet, and with DSL, it always is.

Even when we do a direct update under the date and time program in the control panel, the clock still lags and the date also gets left behind.

And it just got to the point that the machine would not even boot up in the morning.

It would not even try to. It would just sit there quite dead.

We had a hard time finding the correct battery that was needed, but we finally did, and bought two of them - I suppose it must be about time for mine to go too.

It was very easy to find on the motherboard, so changing it was no problem

After a thorough cleaning we hooked it all back up again and fired her up.

She recognized the changed battery and we had to manually set the system clock before the computer would even begin to boot up.

It was so good to see that this was a simple fix.

The computer is happy, and best of all, the user is too pleased to have everything back to normal.

I just hope the next problem is this easy!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Secure the Ram

It has been a week since I made sure that the two ram cards were securely in their slots on the motherboard.

I honestly saw nor felt any difference when I inspected them and wiggled them around.

When I last posted, it had only been a couple of days and things were still working correctly.

I think it is safe to say that problem has been fixed.

The system has been closed back up and put back in it's spot beside the table.

It took a while to figure this one out, and it was so simple a solution.

Keeping things simple is always the best!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Perhaps it is the Ram?

Okay, from my last post, I thought perhaps a good cleaning had cured my computer from it's new ailment.

It certainly didn't hurt it, but the going on and staying on only lasted for two days, then she was back to her old tricks - sometimes she wouldn't even make it through the whole boot-up routine.

Back to the drawing board - the internet search engines.

I read in a couple of different places that loose ram could be a cause of a computer just shutting down.

I was thinking, I really don't think that is the case.

I remember when we upgraded the unit many years ago, it was a real job to get those ram pieces in and out of their slots.

They are secured by a clip on each side, so I really didn't see how they could possibly have come loose.

But, since they are easy enough to locate on the motherboard, I checked them.

Gave both of them a little jiggle and made sure they were in tight.

They seemed pretty secure to me.

Don't know how they could have wiggled out of their slots anyway.

So, the computer has been sitting open, next to the desk for the last two days.

All has been great with it.

No shutting down.

No problems what so ever.

But it has only been two days - just like last time.

I will give it a few more days before I button it back up and put it back beside the table.

Since it wasn't the dust, I am really hoping the jiggling of that ram fixed her up.

Time will tell!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Was it the Dust?

I did a post a couple months ago about networking a couple of computers.

Everything has been working well with the old one during this time.

Until two nights ago.

It just turned itself right off in the middle of using my photoshop program.

I tried to boot it back up, and it would just get past the initial boot, then it would shut off again.

After the third time, I couldn't even get it to boot up anymore.

I tried several times over the last two days to get it to do something - but no go.

I got to thinking, a couple of night before this happened, I heard the hard drive making a high pitched noise as I cycled through some photos in the Windows Photo browser.

I figured now that the hard drive was on its way out.

This computer is almost 10 years old, and it has been used a lot.

So today I decided to take a look at the innards and see if anything was obviously wrong - an unplugged component or maybe something literally "fried".

The only thing that really stood out to me once the casing was off was the amount of dust.

There were even strings of it connecting everything in there.

Out came the vacuum and the can of compressed air.

It certainly looked much better after the cleaning, I was hoping it was feeling just as good too.

So far, so good.

It has booted up and stayed on for a half an hour now.

I can only hope it was the dust!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Beware the Versions

Buying computer software really seems to be quite an easy thing.

You check out what program seems to have what you want, and spending some time checking out opinions and reviews in online forums isn't a bad idea either.

But when you are told to purchase a specific program for a certain year and then find the books to accompany it, you had really better look closely.

My son needed a certain program for one of his online college courses.

Keep in mind that he has never "met" the teacher - all correspondence, class work, homework, and projects are all done online and uploaded to the teacher.

We had no problem finding the needed software even though it was three years old.

Still expensive, but it was available.

Now comes the aggravating part.

The textbook to go with it.

The title, copyright year, author, and version were given.

We searched online a lot, and found several issues that started at $60 and up for used.

No problem, we purchased one.

When he went to do the first assignment, it was quite obvious it was the wrong text.

The instructor failed to mention what exact "type" was needed.

There were office, student, home, business, beginner, intermediate, advanced, brief, regular, and expanded types.

We purchased the one that matched the required software, not knowing about brief or expanded.


The book we had had 300 pages.

The one we needed had over 700.

Would have been nice to let us know we needed the expanded one.

Since it was a beginner class, we also went with the beginner edition.


We needed the intermediate.

At least we had the "home" part correct.

Shelling out $110 for another book was ridiculous.

I think the thing that really gets to me, years ago, when you purchased software, you got the books with it.

No more, supposedly everything you need is in the "help" section of the program.

I am not impressed.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Cold Boot vs Warm Boot

Booting the computer is often referred to as starting the computer up.

It is a series of processes or operations that get the computer up and running when it is powered on.

A "cold boot" is when the computer is powered up from the completely off position.

It is not "sleeping" or "hibernating" as some do to conserve energy - the computer is still powered on for both of those processes to occur.

Most users perform a cold boot each morning when they turn on their system for the day.

A "warm boot" is when the computer is restarted, either from the user telling the operating system to restart or from a program that needs the system to restart in order to use it.

There is also a term called a "random boot".

And we do not like when this happens.

A random boot usually happens when there is a software or hardware conflict or problem in the system which makes the computer reboot.

Finding and fixing what caused that to happen is not fun, so thank goodness it is not something that happens regularly.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


If you have done any kind of work with an html editor, than you have probably run into this term.

I actually first heard about it back in the mid 1980's when computers were still quite basic - mainly a storage system or a spreadsheet program that would make users cry today.

WYSIWYG is an acronym.

It stands for: What You See Is What You Get.

What it means is pretty much this:

When using an editor and choosing the font, colors, alignment, text types, etc - usually from a bar across the top of the editor, all of these choices will be shown as you type along.

Your finished product will look like it does as you prepare it.

No surprises - what you see is what you get.

Without this feature, you better know some basic html and the different names for fonts and colors so you can code the webpage and have it look correct.

WYSIWYG makes our life so much easier, and many computer users today don't know what it is like to not have this feature on an editor.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Hex Codes

I had no idea what a hex code was when I first started to learn about coding.

I knew what a hex wrench was - a tool my husband used for certain types of screws.

Couldn't see what that had to do with web pages on computer.

It took some researching, but I was able to find out exactly what it was - and how simple they were to use.

Hex codes are used to design color on web pages.

Any color on a web page has a hex code that defines that color.

It is a six digit series of number and letters.

Each number and letter represents the blue, green, and red colors, and the intensity of it.

When coding in html, and css, there will be a "#" mark before the code so it is easy to find these hex codes.

There are many color hex codes charts on the web, and a small amount of the colors can be found here on the wiki.

The html goodies website also has some helpful info on color codes.

There are basic colors that are considered "safe" for most programs, operating systems, and browsers.

When one starts getting too fancy, the colors sometimes "do not compute" on another person's computer quite the same.

Of course "color management" for a computer monitor is another story all together.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Digital Frame

I received a digital frame as a gift a couple of months ago.

What a nifty piece of technology it is, and it is simple enough for a totally technology illiterate person to operate.

I am thinking it would make a good gift for a couple of older members of our family who have absolutely nothing to do with any modern technology at all - not even a cell phone.

After it is set up, all it requires from then on is turning it on, and changing the USB flashdrive to view different sets of photos.

I am always getting asked for photographs from these family members, but for the last ten years or so, they are all digital and are on the computer.

We can easily share them with other family members through the computer, but those without one are missing out.

And it is such a pain to go through the photos and have them printed through a lab.

Printing them ourselves is not an option with the high ink costs - not to mention trying to set the color profiles just right (I am really picky about that).

Sending flash drives through the mail with new pictures on them is much easier - and probably cheaper too.

Christmas gifts this year will be easy - now we will just have to watch the sales to get the best deals!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Edit the CSS Code

I finally found the code for the date box on the new template.

I do not have a load of experience with CSS, most of it has been a learn as you go thing.

I have to give credit to the author who designed this template.

The code was organized so perfectly - it wasn't put together with pieces here and there which would have made it almost impossible to find.

I can remember the first time I dealt with this kind of code.

I was just copying and posting whatever the tech said I had to do to make it work.

And they told me at the time it didn't matter where it went just a long as it was between the header and the footer.

Man, looking back now, that code page was a disaster - but it worked.

I really appreciated the way the author had this one composed.

It's one of those behind the scenes things that we never think of - even with computer code.

But we certainly know when it doesn't work.

Just a big thanks to the author - you did a great job!

Monday, August 16, 2010

New Blog Design

It took quite a bit of time online searching for a new template for this blog.

I didn't want anything too fancy but not too plain either.

Being a "tech" blog, I figured simple lines worked best, and after narrowing it down to a few choices, this one had the features that I liked the best.

I liked the split sidebars on the right after the solid ones above it.

It also featured some bars across the bottom, but I removed them through the layout page for the blog.

I may put them back with different gadgets in them as time goes along.

I had to the scour the CSS code to fix the title - it was doing some serious overlapping, and I certainly wasn't going to have that.

There is one big thing that bothers me now.

The "day" and "date" box before each post title isn't looking good at all.

I have gone down the CSS code, and found the size for the date, but I cannot find it for the "day".

I don't like the way it splits it up like it does.

Of course, I am not too familiar with CSS - I know just enough to feel comfortable fiddling with it - as long as I write everything down so I can fix it if necessary.

All in all, I like the choice for now, and will eventually fix that date issue.

But I am not opposed to changing the template again should something I like better come along.

Saturday, August 14, 2010


A very sore subject with me lately.

I had an old Canon workhorse that was designed when windows 98 was around.

It didn't work with Windows XP, but some smart cookie made up a program that allowed it to, and I was able to happily continue using it for many years.

I purchased another canon printer about 4 years ago - it lasted about two.

I have since gone through two epsons and am on my third one.

I purchased it brand new on sale for around fifty dollars.

I needed ink refills - and wouldn't you know - they cost more than the &*$#@(* printer itself.

And I can only use the brand name ones.

I found this out after wasting money on non-brand name ones that were supposed to work.

The companies have designed a chip in each refill - and the printer reads this chip and it will only work if it is the brand name cartridge.

What a racket these printer companies are running.

I bought some refills, but that printer only gets used very occasionally.

I have purchsed a canon laser printer for my business needs, and that thing is great.

No color - but oh yeah, I got the epson with the golden cartridges for that.

Monday, August 2, 2010


All PC's come installed with Microsoft Internet Explorer as a browser for using the internet.

The first computer I had came installed with it and Netscape and AOL - America On Line.

Since dial up was the only option of the day, I signed up with AOL - it was already installed and ready to go - no having to try to figure it all out.

It was great - I had no idea was a browser was - AOL was the way I signed on and browsed the internet - too simple.

My next computer didn't have AOL installed, but the installation CDs were everywhere at the time - they came in the mail quite regular too.

Still didn't need a browser - AOL provided what I needed and used.

Then DSL came to town.

I was so excited - couldn't wait for that high speed internet.

It was touted how it was always online - even when I didn't use AOL so sign online.

How was that possible?

Discovery of the Microsoft Internet Explorer was made.

I used it - but I didn't like it - crashed way too much for me.

Then I discovered Firefox after reading about it in a forum.

More secure, less buggy, and totally customizable.

After reading several more recommendations online, I decided to give it a try.

All I could say was "WOW".

It has been the browser of choice for all the computers that have ever entered our house and my families homes too.

The link is above if you haven't yet discovered it - it really is as good as it sounds!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Microsoft Wireless Explorer Mouse

This was the first wireless piece of equipment that I purchase for my computer over a year ago.

It plug and played very easily on my new system, but the old one took some fiddling around with the mouse options in the control panel several times to get it working.

Not sure why as they are both running the same operating system with all of the same software programs installed on them.

One is an old IBM, and the other is a Dell - must be something about the IBM that didn't recognize it.

This mouse has a rechargeable docking station, and each charge is supposed to last three weeks.

That must be for the average computer user.

Mine has to be charged every night and sometimes it even needs it during the day.

Even though, I love this five button wireless mouse.

It can be used on any surface and the buttons are programmable to what you would like them to do.

A big time and click saver for me.

I have found though, that this mouse just stops works for no apparent reason at all in the middle of using it.

It just freezes on the screen - no moving around or mouse buttons working.

Sticking on the charging dock doesn't help it.

Tapping it on the desk top doesn't do anything either.

But I have found that removing the rechargeable battery and letting it sit that way for a few minutes, then putting it all back together again, fixes that problem.

Works perfectly again.

Perhaps it just needs a break - don't we all sometimes!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Networking Computers

I am a stickler for my Windows XP operating system.

I have many programs that I use for my business, and to upgrade them to work with Vista or 7 is just way too costly.

I was thinking about buying a laptop to use in the living room, so I could get away from my workstation.

But I could only use it for "playing" since I couldn't use any of my software on it.

Since I had an older machine with all I needed on it, I decided to set that one up in the other room - the new flat screen monitors make it easy to do this in smaller spaces.

And then I could network it with the main computer.

XP has all the capabilities to do this through our ethernet box.

I used this website to set up the computers.

For some reason, I didn't have to set up the internet protocol in order to get it to work.

I am thinking it is because I had to do something along those lines when I first connected all our computers to the internet through the DSL router.

It is great to sit in the living room in the evening and still be able to access my shared files on my main machine.

Just remembering to keep it on and not turn it off as I leave the office for the evening is another thing though!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Tackling the Fake Windows Security Center Malware

Last weekend had me tackling this tough piece of malware again.

The first attack was in January of this year on my son's computer.

We spent almost a day figuring it out.

And I decided that the program that worked to remove it should be installed on all our systems.

Regular anti-virus programs and firewalls are all ignorant of it.

This is a mean piece of malware that takes over the computer.

It easily installs itself from an infected website, and once you get the fake "Windows Security Alert" it is too late.

It doesn't look like a fake, and they want you to click on the links they provide telling you that you need to buy the software to "fix" and "secure" your computer.


There will be several other windows popping up and sliding up and down along the bottom that are meant to scare you.

What you need to do, is go to this website:, and follow the directions they provide.

They also have screen shots of what the pop-ups look like so you can familiarize yourself with them.

The one we tackled this weekend was much harder to remove than the one we had earlier in the year.

I am thinking it has morphed into a tougher rogue, and it recognized the software we had previously installed to remove it.

Unlike the first time, it had completely taken over the computer - we couldn't get online at all or use any program in the machine.

I was able to load the new Malwarebytes program on a flash drive and reinstall it into the infected machine once I had disabled all the start up options.

It works like a charm, and it cleans all the trojan files off the computer.

Just remember to keep it updated and run it occasionally as you do your anti-virus program.

I use the free version, but am giving some thought to the paid version.

The paid one would have caught it before it infected the computer.

But I have had conflicts in the past that slow down the computer once all these "safety" programs are all running.

Will just play it by ear for the time being.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Another Blog

Just what I need is another blog to take up more time from my already stretched way-too-thin day.

Well, I think this one is a necessary one.

I am not a computer expert by any stretch of the imagination.

I have had no official training or schooling.

Just the school of hard knocks in the computer world for me.

All I have learned has been by hands-on.

Many years ago, I was very intimidated by these machines.

Afraid to use it because I might break it.

Afraid to change anything in it because I might break it.

Almost afraid to touch it - and you know why.

Well, using, adding, changing, and touching does mess things up at times.

But if I was going to keep this machine and use it to build a business, then I had better know something about it.

Trial and error has taught me a lot.

The internet and searches taught me even more.

The answers are all out there, but some of them are pretty hard to find.

Most things are pretty simple though, especially these days with the plug and play capabilities.

Heck, they almost take care of themselves.

And that is a scary thought at times - remember 2001: A Space Odyssey.

I will share what I have found and used to keep my systems running over the years.

Nothing too fancy or technical.

Mostly links to places I have found useful

Some tips and some reviews too.

Hope it can help someone as I have been helped over the years.

Welcome to Tech Tips From a NonGeek.