Boulder Computer Maven Newsletter - September 2004

 
Dear Friends,

Thank you for letting me help you with your computer needs in the past.  This is my monthly newsletter, containing computer tips that I hope you’ll find helpful and interesting.  If you don’t want to receive this newsletter, just let me know, and I'll remove your name from my mailing list.

The lead story this month is that Microsoft has released Service Pack 2 for Windows XP.  I recommend that everyone with a computer running Windows XP install this free upgrade as soon as possible.

As always, please contact me at any time with computer questions.  I want to help you get the most from your computer.

Best Wishes,
Steve Winograd, Boulder Computer Maven

Phone: 303-444-8247
Web Site: http://www.bcmaven.com

Helping People Use Computers in Boulder for Over 20 Years



Windows XP Service Pack 2

Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2) is a free upgrade to Windows XP with significant improvements in computer security, wireless networking, pop-up blocking, and many other areas.  This Microsoft web page has the full story, including the Top 10 Reasons to Install Windows XP Service Pack 2

If you turn on automatic updates, your computer will automatically receive SP2.  However, it might be days or weeks before the automatic update occurs.  You can also download and install SP2 yourself or order it on a CD that Microsoft will mail to you.

The easiest way to get SP2 is to have me come to your home or office and install it.  The job typically takes 45-60 minutes, depending on the speed of your computer.

Recycling Computers and Other Electronics

This Eco-Cycle web page shows how you can recycle or dontate old computers, printers, monitors, VCRs, fax machines, and other electronic equipment that you no longer use


Renewing Your Antivirus Program

Every computer needs an up-to-date antivirus program for protection against viruses from E-mail messages and other files.  Many new computers come with a trial subscription to an antivirus program from Norton or McAfee.  At the end of the trial period, the program prompts you to go to the vendor's web site and buy a subscription renewal.  While those vendors are the best known in the antivirus area, equally good programs are available from many different vendors, and some of them are free or cost less.  I can help you decide whether to renew the trial subscription or un-install and replace the original antivirus program.


Using Your Computer for Storing Pictures, Scanning, and Photocopying

You can use your computer to store pictures from a digital camera, edit the pictures, and E-mail them or write them to CDs to share with friends and family.  If you have a collection of prints from film cameras, you can use a scanner to read them into your computer.  With a scanner and printer, you can use your computer as a photocopier, eliminating the inconvenience of going to a photocopying store when you want copies.  You can also get an "All-In-One" unit, with a built-in scanner and printer, that can make photocopies without using a computer.


Safeguarding Your Computer with System Restore

Computers running Windows Me and Windows XP have a built-in feature for recovering from unexpected software failures.  Using System Restore, you can make a "snapshot" of your computer's configuration when everything is working right.  If a problem occurs, you don't need to know what went wrong or how to fix it.  You can simply use System Restore to return the computer to the state that it was in before the problem occurred.


Tablet PC

The Tablet PC is a new type of computer that does everything that a laptop computer does, and more.  You can write on the screen, entering data in your own printing or handwriting, making drawings, marking up documents, and highlighting text.  You can even train the Tablet PC to recognize your voice and use it to create documents or E-mail messages by talking to the computer!  I use my Tablet PC to take handwritten notes when I visit clients.  Ask me for a free Tablet PC demonstration.