The Bug Report
The only Bug that's good for your computer!
A Publication of the Greater South Bay PC Users Group
Volume 16 Number 13
Reviewed By John Sullivan, GSBUG, Inc.
VideoWave is a program that you use to edit the tapes you made with your camcorder. Normally, when you record a lot of tapes, you wish you could cut out the best parts of each and put them all together onto one. VideoWave is one of the many products on the market which can help you do this, plus it can add a bunch of special effects, create moving titles, add narrations ("voice overs"), music and sound effects, do live video and image capture, and output it all to .avi, Quicktime or Mpeg video.
I should say that I had some problems using this software at first, and I wasn't sure if it was me, or the program. However, now that I've spent some more time with it, I discovered that the problems were neither me, nor the software, but rather my computer! Having already had a little experience with computer video is what probably kept me from giving up; I've seen some of the problems that you can run into. This computer is a Pentium 200 with 64 MB RAM, a 4.3 GB SCSI hard drive and an Adaptec 2940UW controller, and it's just too slow!
Non-linear editing is extremely resource intensive. That means that you need the biggest, baddest computer that you can afford. You're going to want the fastest processor, the most memory, the super fastest hard drive (maybe even more than one) and hard drive controller card. Plus, you need a good capture card. The video editing software only can work on your tapes AFTER you get them onto your hard drive, and you need a "video capture card" in order to do this.
The capture card has a connector on it where you plug in a cable from your VCR, and then when you play a tape in your VCR, the card changes the signal into digital information that the computer can understand. There are quite a few different ones on the market, but the All In Wonder PRO seems to be the most famous.
Also, when I bought the All in Wonder Pro, I selected the OEM model, which is just the card, cable and installation software, but without the extra software that's bundled with the full version. As it turns out, the full version comes with MGI's VideoWave!
Hardware Requirements For VideoWave
As listed in the manual, the absolute minimum requirements in order to run VideoWave 1.5 are:
Minimum Pentium 90...MMX recommended
Windows 95(or98) or NT
Min 16 MB RAM ...32 recommended
Min 20 MB free hard drive space for the basic program (plus LOTS more for your video clips)
Super VGA card w/ 2MB video RAM, min 800x600 resolution at 16 bit color
Direct Draw drivers recommended
16 bit stereo sound card and speakers CD-ROM drive
It also says: "For video capture, you will need a capture card, TV tuner card or a video capture enabled PC."
Previewing Your Work
My old 200 MHz Pentium really has a hard time keeping up with video editing. When I tried using VideoWave, it worked ok, but I kept getting color shifting and streaks in the video when I "previewed" it. Then I noticed on the package that the software is MMX compatible, and although my processor is a Pentium 200, it is not the MMX model. That may have a lot to do with it not being able to keep up.
Rendering (or Producing) your video is when you are all done editing and are ready to make the final version. The software will render, or compute and save, your production out in full color and full screen, at a designated 30 frames per second. Each frame of your production will be calculated at full screen and full color, and it will be up to your playback software to try to play it back at 30 fps.
Rendering takes FOREVER! It's something you don't want to do until you're completely satisfied with your editing. Then you hit the Produce button, and walk away while it renders.
Back To Our Program
After you install VideoWave and start it up, you're presented with the VideoWave interface (main screen). You're going to notice that it's visually quite attractive, with a section in the middle with the preview screen, and some VCR type push buttons for playing and rewinding and stuff. There's also a strip along the left side with some well designed 3D icons for things like opening a new file, saving a file, cut and paste, etc. You'll notice that things have an interactive feeling, when you move your cursor over them, they light up or move or something. You're also going to notice that you have no idea what to do with any of this stuff!
Relax, this is one of those computer programs where you're just going to have to bite the bullet and read the manual! Fortunately, MGI has done a nice job with it, also.
VideoWave is not a simple program to learn or to use, but that's because video editing is not simple. There's a lot to learn and remember and try to balance all at the same time when you're editing, and VideoWave goes a long way to making it easier for you.
I say "goes a long way" because I still get the feeling that a program that you have to pay for should make life easier for you, and VideoWave does, but I keep thinking it could be better. And guess what? MGI is coming out with VideoWave version 2, and it should be available by the time you read this.
MGI announced at this year's COMDEX that they will be shipping VideoWave 2 in Dec 98. Here's the info and hardware requirements that they posted on their website:
(For version 2.0): System Requirements, Availability & Pricing
MGI VideoWave II requires a Pentium 166MHz processor
(266MHz Pentium II recommended for DV);
32MB RAM (64MB recommended);
1GB hard disk (for program and workspace;
6 GB UDMA or SCSI HDD recommended for DV);
SVGA (800x600 16 bit color);
16-bit stereo sound card and speakers;
The software is designed for Win95, Win98 and NT 4, and MGI is also developing VideoWave II to run under the BeOS (available 2H, 1999). A "Video for Windows" or "DirectShow" compatible video capture board or TV Tuner card is required to capture from analogue video devices (like a camcorder or VCR) with "video out" or "TV out" for output back to tape. An IEEE 1394 card (8920, 8940 or 8945) is required to capture from and output to a DV camcorder. Available December 1998, the software will continue to be offered to users for less than US$100.
VideoWave $89.95 (CompUSA)
By William A. Parradee, GSBUG, Inc.
Windows 95 and programs that use it often surprise us with unexpected results. They can lose files or access to them. Internet Explorer 4.0 (IE4) provides several examples of the problems.
Service Packs and Upgrades
Service packs and upgrades were issued to fix some IE4 problems but others remain. First, a word about downloading IE4 service packs and upgrades; this will illustrate more Windows 95 program problems.
Free downloads for these upgrades are offered but they take much more than an hour. Many of us cannot tie up the phone line and just sit around that long; or pay high local phone and ISP charges.
On many computers Windows 95 closes down after perhaps 20 minutes of inactive keyboard -- and won't resume a download from where it left off. Just press a key now and then to keep it from shutting down. Right! -- Wrong! That instantly disconnected my Packard Bell from the download. It is hard to win. However, it is believed that this won’t happen if you press the Alt or Cntrl key.
Temporary Internet Files Deleted
IE4's Temporary Internet Files (cache) fill an ever growing space on the hard drive. When the cache reaches the limit set by the user, it deletes files -- not always the oldest ones.
IE4 often deletes new and recent files you hoped to view or read offline (or it does not bother to save them). It may do the same when the ISP is accessed again. The files can be saved with two or three extra steps while online -- without the graphics unless you take many extra steps. See Note 1.
The entire cache can be deleted (except cookies) but not simply the oldest portion of it. Usually, I am weeks behind in offline viewing of those files. I deleted a large number of old files one-by-one but it seemed to make little difference.
Moving the Cache?
Move is a misleading word. You cannot move the cache. You can set IE4 to make a new cache in another location. IE4 is supposed to delete the old cache after relocating but did not do so for me. Limited space on a drive or partition is one reason for relocating the cache.
To "move" IE4’s cache, right click on its icon and select Properties. From the General tab choose Settings, then Move Folder. Select the desired drive and folder; you may need to create the folder first. Complete the operation.
The Unexpected -- Unless You Were Warned
When the new cache folder is first accessed with Explorer, it will contain only the cookies! Check the old location with Explorer; the old files are gone -- unless you click the plus sign next to the old cache folder. Or you use another program such as PowerDesk to go to the old cache folder. See Note 2.
History and Favorites are still available which may help a wee bit in some cases.
Moving the Old Cache
The old cache folders and files used about 150 MB on my C drive. I wanted them on the E drive. The IE4 Move command did not move them. Next, I tried to move them with PowerDesk; it refused due to their file attributes. So I copied them to the E drive and deleted them from the C drive. Fine. Now the C drive has more available space.
Help With IE4 Cache Problems
CacheSentry120.zip, a recent freeware program is said to properly manage IE4's cache. The Zip file is 93,253 bytes and should take about 30 to 45 seconds to download from Simtel. The .exe file is only 41KB and will use very little of Windows 95/98/NT resources. It also works with IE3.
Note 1. Details of saving a web page with its graphics are given in my article in the September 1998 Bug Report, pages 4-5. You may find that article at http://gsbug.apcug.org/
Note 2. If IE4 is moved back to the original location, it will not access the old cache. The cache and its files will seem to be lost.
The old cache files may be there but IE4 will not view them the normal way. The files will be split among four or more folders with odd names. Click on the Temporary Internet Files + sign to view the folders. After selecting a folder, press Tab then select an HTM file or a URL to view. Few, if any, of the graphics will appear when viewed this way. Graphics files can be viewed individually by clicking on them after exiting other files.
Winfile is said to be able to view those old files but it did not seem to work for me; it did not even show the cache folder.
It is not necessary to move the IE4 back to the old location to view these files using the method just given.
By Bob Hudak
Notice something different in the heading? I now have a web page! It was so much fun working and learning to do this at Frank Chao's Web Development SIG. The more problems we ran into, the more we learned. It was a group effort. John Sullivan checked out my page and improved it by animating the string of Christmas lights.
Christmas is past and changes have been made to the page. Sorry you missed the first edition. Make sure you check this month’s. You can download a little program that will check your BIOS to see if you are ready for the year 2000. There is one file for Award and one for AMI. Check to see which you have on your computer and then download the right one. If you do not have an internet connection, it is time to pick up a copy of NetZero (for Win 95/98) and get online for FREE.
I have also added the BIOS checking programs to the 4-98 DOM for all members that are not out there surfing. This disk is full of good stuff. It has another program that Jim Corones wrote about for checking your computer for Y2000. It also has Win95 error codes, what they are and how to fix them. It has TweakUI, a group of programs to help with things in Win 95/98. Last of all, it has MTUSpeed. a program to improve the download speed of your modem.
The new disk this month is called WINBOOST. WinBoost is like TweakUI on steroids. With it, you can make dozens of configuration improvements and adjust preference settings that would otherwise require no end of Registry hacks. For one thing, you can eliminate that obnoxious stop-and-run-Scandisk routine whenever Windows doesn't shut down properly. Lots of other cool settings, definitely worth a look. This is a shareware program that I have not tried, but heard about it from a good source.
In Nov. at our generally meeting we had a presentation on a virus program called In-Defense. Members were buying it at $50 a copy. I asked the presenter how it compared with InVircible and he told me he had not heard of InVircible??? I then asked for a copy of In-Defense to evaluate on the club computer. He said he would send a copy but I have not heard from him yet. So I have an updated version (12-98) of InVircible for you that will work on Win 3.1 or Win95/98. Two disk set for $5.00. If I charged more, I might sell more??? InVircible is a complete generic solution to protect your data and applications, from both viruses and data loss, without needing constant and scheduled updating. Thanks to its generic nature, InVircible provides effective protection against all types of computer viruses, whether common or new, including against the newest Word and Excel macro viruses, macro Trojans and bombs, and the latest Windows 95/98 specific viruses, with barely a single upgrade per year! Ask for Disk # 10.
Last item. The club now has a new computer to try out all the great programs that come our way. We still need a monitor and a modem for it. So we are selling the computer we have been using and will use the funds to round out the new machine. Many of you have seen this machine at my SIG and other SIGs. It is a Pentium 75. Has 3 1/2 & 5 1/4 floppy drives, hard drive, CD-ROM, modem, hand scanner, mouse, keyboard, monitor, sound card, speakers and the paperwork. It has the free internet program, NetZero, loaded and working. It has a Windows 95b operating system and other goodies. The first person to offer $300.00 is going to take it. If interested, you are invited to come to my home and take a close look. Call!
By John Sellers, GSBUG, Inc.
I attended the Long Beach computer meeting on December 16, 1998 by invitation from their Program Chairman Art Borges. Their club has 300 members and usually gets an audience of 80.
People. From my observations their membership probably has a higher percentage of retirees than ours.
Their presentation was "Street Wizard" by Art Westhydeman of Adept Computer Solutions Inc. Art presented a program which allowed one to display a map of highways or streets in the country on your computer. Art gave a copy of their program with a request for a review, I accepted in hopes that Bob Hudak will accept this item for review. Also he has asked for permission to display his product and give a presentation at our meeting next year and I encouraged him to keep in contact with our club for scheduling. I gave him my e-mail address and asked him to kept us informed of any more product information or news.
I tried to note characteristics of their club that were new or different from ours in hopes that they may be informative to us in our effort to make improvements and to promote growth of the Greater South Bay Computer Club.
Basically they had no restrictions on visitors returning to following meetings but of course they had incentives for them to join. Those that I noted were drawings for presentation software and a club prize of $35. Also at the end of the meeting they passed out plastic reference sheets with quick tips for using Windows 95. These are valued at $3.95. Also only members were able to participate in the raffle for software to be given away by the presenter.
Visually they used an easel in the front of their meeting room with a sign showing "Long Beach Computer Club" and a temporary eight and one-half times eleven paper sheet attached with the presentation name given. Other areas were also identified with signs, making it easier for newcomers to notice things.
They impressed me that they were very much aware of the need for finances to run their club. They sold ink jet refills at a separate table in the rear. On the side of the room, they had T shirts and caps with labeling showing the name of their club for sale. They had a raffle sale with tickets selling for three for one dollar and the prizes were to select one of ten software packages. This raffle went on until all packages were won. The president indicated that most of this software was given to them through additional gifts after product reviews. I think this raffle is available to all present.
The president said that, in most cases, the companies sending software for evaluation were very liberal and usually sent the club additional copies.
On the other side of the room they displayed videos used for training in 35 software programs. These were obtained through sources found in the newspaper and or the TV via Graphics. Trial versions are offered at $4.95 each. A member may borrow one for one month by leaving a deposit of $20 which is refundable upon prompt return. Their deposit is lost if not returned when due. They then owned the video. I think they may do something similar for their review program also. Also Viagraphics has a program set up for supplying up to 12 videos at one a month where reviews are required on each one. He suggested this for our club. The president said this effort in the past has been very successfully.
After the presentation, he asked for suggestions for things that members thought the club needed and reminded them to please write them down because if you stopped him in the hall and told him he might forget. He promised that all suggestions put in the suggestion box would be considered but he could not promise that they would be implemented. This suggestion box was also located on a table with a sign to help remind members of their prerogatives.
Art Borges tells me that the Press Telegram advertises their meeting times and gives a short article describing their program presentation. Another small point, the club passes out pins to members having been in the club for 5 years or longer.
Art said he attended the Southwest Regional Users Group Conference in San Diego (3 days). He recommended that club members attend because they could get a lot of information on computer products there. The cost of registration was $30.
The president gave me a copy of their newsletter and offered to have an exchange of newsletters with our club. Perhaps the board or our editor may wish to consider this offer.
In review of my visitation of another club I wish to recommend that other board members or members consider visiting other clubs and writing a review so our club members may become more knowledgeable and consider how to employ our resources more effectively.
By Bob Hudak, GSBUG, Inc
Photoshop is such a complicated program that it is hard to even figure out all the features it has. For me it is impossible to remember them all and how to use them at the proper time when working on a graphic.
This program has a top rating and is the tool of choice for the professional. Is it the program for the hobby computer user? You have to look at need, want and cost. Cost is $250.00 for an academically priced package. (seniors qualify). Upgrades cost more and a new user will pay more for the program than for his computer today.
If you get by the cost, then look at what you are going to do with the program. I have used a number of less powerful programs that have worked for what I was trying to do, but usually had to compromise between what I wanted to do and what the program can do. With Photoshop you can do whatever you dream of, but you will have to work at finding out how. At our Digital SIG, members show what they learned or worked on to the rest of the group. Each little feature takes hours if not days to learn and perfect. This program will fill whatever need you have. I am not going to go into all that it can do. You ask the question: Can Photoshop do xxxxx? Answer is yes! So if you want the best. Ask for Adobe Photoshop by name.
What are the system requirements? Pentium class processor, Win95/98, at least 32MB of memory, 60MB of free space on hard drive and an 8-bit video card. The better your printer, the better the output. You need the fastest CPU and as much memory as possible to make this program move along at a nice pace. I was working with it on a Pentium 75 machine with only 16 MB of memory. It works, but if you use the program on a regular basis you will want to upgrade your computer. Here are a few examples of the time it takes. To load the program: 95 seconds. To load a TIFF file from a floppy: 2 min. and 15 seconds. I loaded this same file from the floppy into Paint Shop Pro V 3.1 in 30 seconds. Why does it take so long to load? It takes a minute to exit the program. So you see it will run on a slower machine but you will pay the price in the time it takes.
The manual that comes with the program is only 390 pages. You will be looking for third party books to help you. The learning curve is long and steep. The program comes with a second Tour and Training CD-ROM. This is great! It shows you the features and has lessons for you to try out different things. You get the step by step moves to help you do the lesson. You need to run it several times to feel comfortable about doing it on your own. Take notes. The program has a vocabulary of it's own that you need to learn. This is harder if you have used other programs and are looking for familiar words. There is no standard. Do you know what a clone tool is? In Photoshop it is called a Pattern stamp. The logo for it looks like a rubber date stamp. Just part of the learning curve. Not good, not bad, just different.
Another thing that I missed is what file formats you can use to import or export. It has very few when compared to Paint Shop Pro or Corel. I had trouble importing files into Photoshop from other programs. Also importing files saved in Photoshop into other programs. I have not figured out what the problem is, only that there is a compatibility problem. I am sure there is no problem if you stay with the Adobe line up.
There is so much to this program that it cannot be covered in our little newsletter in one article. Last month George Austin had a article in the Bug Report on our Dig SIG and some of the features of Photoshop. As more things are learned in our SIG, someone will put them into an article. The bottom line is that this is a very powerful program that takes a bit (lot) of time to learn but it can handle any graphic work you will have to work on. Check to see if you "want" or "need" a program of this caliber and if you do, buy it. Come to our Dig SIG to see it in action. Bring a problem and we will try to resolve it for you using Photoshop 5.0.
By Andrew Pincon
Reprinted from Hard-Copy, The Journal of the Chicago Computer Society, 10/98
The British financial magazine, The Economist (Sept. 19, 1998) did a thorough article on Y2K. The opening piece stated "The millennium computer bug is totally predictable in its timing, but completely unpredictable in its effects. Its greatest danger lies in that uncertainty." The article can be accessed through the Web at: www.economist.com/editorial/freeforal1/19-9-98/index_survey/html.
This past month has seen the emergence of a number of high-profile surveys, studies, reports and news items, which unfortunately have been under-reported in the main stream press due to "Monica-Gate".
Merrill Lynch issued a 400-page report produced as a result of surveying their various domestic and overseas offices and clients. The objective of their survey was to determine the economic impact of Y2K on international companies as well as on global financial markets. Most of the report was guardedly positive, with the exception of items like Brazil's telephone systems probably failing. However, within two weeks of the report's being released Merrill Lynch announced they had underestimated their own cost of bringing their systems into compliance and they increased their Y2K budget by $100 million. Uncertainty strikes again!
The Gartner Group, a well-respected major IT consulting firm reported that, of the 15,000 companies and government agencies they surveyed, 23% had not even started a millennium project yet and most of those (80%) were small-to-medium enterprises. Only 11% of those surveyed had started to look at embedded chips. There are about 50 billion embedded chips lurking in systems throughout the world.
As reported in last month's Hard-Copy, the state of Pennsylvania has generally been in the forefront of Y2K assessment and remediation. So too has been the state of Washington. In the middle of September, the Seattle Times reported that of the state's 454 mission-critical systems, only 4% have been certified as Y2K-compliant. An interesting detail that accompanied this report was the state had to redefine what was and wasn't "mission-critical". Last summer, the state identified more than 600 "mission-critical" systems, this summer it is down to 454.
The uncertainty on the Federal level is even greater. As an example, the head of the FAA made a number of pronouncements in the media about thc FAA being ahead of the power curve now in Y2K remediation and testing. She was immediately criticized by the heads of the Senate and Congress Y2K subcommittees and the GAO charged with analyzing this problem, whereupon she announced that she "appreciated her colleagues' constructive input".
Horn's Y2K subcommittee issued his report card on Federal agencies' Y2K status. In February the overall grade for the government was D-, in May the grade was F and in August it was D. More telling than this general grade of all government agencies however is the budget creep. In February the estimated cost to the Federal government on Y2K was approximately $4.7 billion and 6 major agencies were in trouble; in May the budget went up to $5 billion and 6 agencies were still in trouble. Then in August the budget was raised to $6.3 billion with 7 agencies in trouble, one of which being the Department of Transportation, which of course includes the FAA. Lest you think that the FAA is the only agency misunderstanding or misreporting their real Y2K status, the GAO also came down hard on the Department of Defense for understating the scope and costs of the problem. How are we doing on uncertainty?
Capers Jones is generally recognized as a foremost leader in this field of research analysis and he is an author of numerous IT textbooks. His current estimate of the costs of Y2K over the next 10 years is approximately $3.5 trillion, which includes $1.5 trillion in consequential litigation costs. The table below helps to place this figure into historical perspective.
Event Estimated Cost in Billions
World War II $4,200
Y2K Capers Jones $3,500
10 yr est cost
Vietnam War $ 500
Kobe Earthquake $ 100
LA Earthquake $ 60
Furthermore, he points out that in the 50-year history of the computer industry, there has never been "defect-free software". In fact, he says "It is naive and risky to assume that 100% of Year 2000 errors will be found and repaired, since the U.S. average for other bugs is only about 85% defect removal efficiency and even "best in class" results are below 99% in efficiency." He goes on to say "It would be a reasonable contingency plan to have emergency response teams available in every company and government agency to deal with the impact of undiscovered Year 2000 problems." How's that for uncertainty!
The number of news items that have recently come across my desk dealing with contingency planning has surprised even me. To name just two by way of illustration, the Canadian government announced recently that their military forces would begin to coordinate contingency plans with provincial and local governments to insure continuity of government services and a major conference was held in Houston, Texas, by the Electrical Power Industry on Y2K Contingency Planning with representatives of most of the major utilities, associated vendors, and service companies in attendance. Now what does contingency planning for the utility industry mean for us consumers and owners of PC's, I ask you?
By John Sellers, GSBUG, Inc.
October is the Month when most of our membership renewal dates occur. We send each member up for renewal a questionnaire to help in assessing the wants and needs of the club. We mailed notices and questionnaires to the 112 members up for renewal in October.
65 people returned the questionnaire.
41 people submitted scores for the 11 questions asked.
15 people offered specific comments or suggestions of ways to make the club better. The options were to rate the 11 items listed from 1 to 5 with 5 being the most important and 1 the least important.
The categories and the total score for each was as follows.
Start Meetings on time 142
Door Prize 111
Win 95 135
95 class 123
End Meetings on time 136
RAM session 104
Thank you to those who participated in the survey. The results and the specific suggestions will be evaluated by the board of directors.
By John Sullivan, GSBUG, Inc.
Having problems with your computer and can't wait for the next SIG meeting? Why not get answers to your questions the way I do? (you'll need Internet access, of course.)
For the best lessons on learning your computer, go to Jeff Levy's web page at: www.jefflevy.com
Jeff runs a computer talk show on Sunday mornings from 9am to noon on radio station KFI 640. You can go directly to his lessons page at:
When you get there, you can click on the word "Index" and you'll get a short explanation of what each lesson contains.
Another good site is that of computer writer Al Fasoldt. Al's homepage is:
and you can get to his articles by clicking on the word "Article", or directly at: www.dreamscape.com/afasoldt/columns.html
Are you "annoyed" by some of the stupid things Windows does? Maybe other people are too. Why not check out their comments and complaints, and maybe some solutions at "Windows Annoyances":
Lastly, how would you like to get a free "tip of the day" in your email, on just about any computer topic? Go to:
and select the topics you're interested in. BE SURE to go all the way to the bottom of the page and click in the box next to where it says "TipWorld occasionally likes to inform our subscribers of special deals...If you DO NOT wish to receive such mailings, check here."...unless you want to receive a lot of junk mail.
By Keith Aleshire
Reprinted from The Digital Viking, 9/98
One criticism of Windows 3.x, 95 and 98 is that you must restart your computer periodically to refresh what's called “system resources”.
System resources is a memory area used to handle screen fonts, menus and other operating system tasks. With Windows 95, the use of system resources was greatly improved over Windows 3.x. With Windows 95, a 64K resource limit was set.
For example, the USER heap portion of these system resources has a limit of 200 menu and window handles (combined) for the entire system. Some programs tend to allocate many of these handles when they are performing large tasks, which causes the system to run out of resources quickly.
To check system resources in Windows 3.x, select Help, About Program Manager. In Windows 95/98, select the System icon in the Control Panel and then choose the Performance tab. The percentage of resources is displayed. When you first start your computer, you may have between 85 to 95 percent of your resources available. As you use your computer, those resources are lessened. At below 50 percent, your computer may act slow or unstable. With Windows 95/ 98, things act up at 50 percent or less.
Below are some tips to better conserve your system resources:
1. Do not quit a program until it has completely loaded. If you don't wait for it to fully start, you develop a "memory leak.''
2. Do not constantly open and close a software program you often use. You lose system resources in the process. Instead, minimize your most popular programs so they are always available to you.
3. Avoid keeping Windows 3.x-based programs open in Windows 95/98. (For compatibility reasons, Windows does not free system resources abandoned by Windows 3.x-based programs until all Windows 3.x-based programs have been closed. Only when there are no Windows 3.x-based programs running can Windows safely release these resources.)
4. Adding more memory (RAM) to your computer will not improve system resources; it's a limited resource.
5. Of course, to refresh your system resources, restart your computer. In Windows 3.x, you simply need to exit from Windows and then type "WIN" to start anew.
Reprinted from Diablo Blue, 10/98
Speeding Up Program Loading in Windows 98
Disk Defragmenter in Windows 98 has a new option to speed up loading of programs. This option moves the files you use most often together near the beginning of the hard drive. To make it work you have to run your system for a while (a couple of weeks), then run Disk Defragmenter. Click on Start, Programs, Accessories, System Tools, Disk Defragmenter. Click on the Settings button, and make sure the checkbox Rearrange program files so my programs start faster is checked. Click OK to start defragmenting your hard drive.
Turning Off Find Fast
Find Fast is a routine that runs in the background and indexes all files on your hard drive. Unfortunately, it can slow down your PC especially if you don't have a super-fast processor and hard drive. Here's how to turn off Find Fast.
First go to Start, Settings, Control Panel and click on Find Fast. Click on the first index listed to highlight it, then click on Index on the menu bar, and click on Delete Index and follow the prompts to delete the index. Repeat these steps for each index. Then go to Start, Programs, Start Up, move the mouse pointer over Find Fast, click the right mouse button, and from the popup menu select Delete and click on Yes in the Confirm file delete dialog box. Find Fast is history!
Where Did My File Extensions Go?
Windows 98's default is to hide file extensions for all "known" file types. To display all file extensions, double click on My Computer, click on View on the menu bar and click on Folder Options. Click on the View tab, and clear the Hide file extensions for known file types checkbox.
By John Sullivan, GSBUG, Inc.
I hear this complaint a lot. A few years ago, you would have heard it from me! Finally I fixed it, thanks to the help of some nice people on the Internet that run a site called "Windows Annoyances". They listed the most common complaints from Windows 95 users, and also the responses that other users had sent in.
The suggestions to fix the Windows password problem were many, and the fix depends on exactly what the problem is. The are three places that I run across that need a password:
1) The first is when you initially start Windows up, and it asks you to login. This is for households that have more than one person using the computer. Each person can setup the computer the way they like it by changing the fonts, background image, sounds, etc. and have the computer remember these settings each time by tying them in to their password. Then when you login, Windows starts up the way you like it, and when somebody else logs in with their username and password, Windows starts up the way they like it.
This can be a good thing, but in a household where only one person uses the computer, or where you don't need it to be "personalized" for each user, it's an annoyance. If you want to get rid of it, the next time you see the box asking you to login to Windows, move the cursor so that it's flashing in the password box, but don't type anything. Just hit the Enter key, and Windows will open a second box and ask you to confirm your choice. Hit the Enter key again, and what you've told Windows is to make a new user with no password! When Windows gets finished starting up, open the Control Panel (click on Start button, Settings, Control Panel) and double click the Passwords icon. Click on the tab that says "User Profiles", and click in the little circle to the left of "All users of this PC use the same..."etc. and click the "OK" button. If you get a message saying you have to reboot, click on the OK button for that one too. Windows should restart, but not ask for a password. If this doesn't work, let me know...
2) The most common complaint I hear about Windows passwords is when people try to logon to the Internet, and before the computer will dial it asks them to type in their password for the Internet. There's a little box that you can check so that Windows will remember your password next time, but it's either grayed out so that you can't check it, or you can check it, but Windows forgets your password anyway!
Do this: Open Control Panel (Start, Settings, Control Panel) and double click on the "Network" icon. A window will open, and right in the middle (vertically speaking) there should be a box labeled "Primary Network Logon". If this doesn't say "Client for Microsoft Networks", move your cursor to the right-end of the box and click on the down-pointing arrow. In the window that opens, see if Client for Microsoft Networks is listed. If it is, click on it, then click on the "OK" button at the bottom of the window. If it's not listed, you'll have to ADD it.
To add it, get out your Windows CD and put it in your CD drive, or get your Windows installation floppy disks ready. Back in the Network window that we were just looking at, up near the top is a line that says "The following network components are installed", then a box with some weird names in it, then some Add.. and Remove..buttons. Click on Add, and a new window will open titled "Select Network Component" and a list. In the list, click once on the word "Client", and then click on "Add". Another window will open. Look at the new list and click on "Microsoft" in the left column, and in the right column you should see "Client for Microsoft Networks" highlighted (if it's not blue highlighted, click on it, also). Once you have the "Client for Microsoft Networks" highlighted in blue, click on the "OK" button. Windows will search the CD, or your floppies, and copy the files that it needs to your hard drive. When it's done, you should find yourself back at the original "Network" window where we started. Go down to the "Primary Network Logon" box and make sure it says Client for Microsoft Networks. If it doesn't, click on the down pointing arrow, and select it. Then close the window by clicking on the "OK" button. If Windows wants to reboot, do it.
This should fix your dialup password so that Windows remembers it each time. If it doesn't work, let me know...
3.) Occasionally I hear people say that they can logon to the Internet ok, but when they try to get their e-mail, the service wants them to enter their password each time! Usually, (not always) this password is saved at your ISP, the people you pay for your Internet services, rather than on your computer. If your service doesn't remember your e-mail password when you try to get your mail, you need to contact them and tell them to fix it.
Remember, this is not the same password problem that we talked about in number 2, above. It might be the same password, but it's not the same problem, and it's up to your service to fix this one!
Editor’s note: Microsoft’s official password patch for Windows 95 is located at:
By Frank Chao, GSBUG, Inc.
Hello. This is the sixth in a series of articles about matters pertaining to the Internet. During the past four weeks, I received several inquiries about configuring computers for both LA Free-Net and NetZero. There are various strategies for doing this. For a super technical discussion, please see
For a simple discussion, contact me via one of the methods below or attend the Web Development SIG on the third Wednesday of each month at our editor’s house.
A Workaround for a Problem With NetZero
If you load NetZero and start it up, and it asks you if you want to drop into MS-DOS mode, just say “no“. There is something in their software which makes Windows 98, and sometimes Windows 95, think that NetZero is a DOS application. If you say “yes”, you will probably lock up your computer. Since NetZero is updating their software weekly, they will probably send all their users an update in a month or two. As most of you know, NetZero sends you stuff every time you log in.
Another NetZero Trick
We learned, at the December Web Development SIG, that NetZero’s advertising bar has to sit on the primary screen if you are using two monitors in Win98. If you drag its advertising bar to your secondary monitor, NetZero hangs up your phone line within 15 seconds. Therefore, if you have two monitors, put your browser on the secondary monitor and keep NetZero’s advertising bar on the primary monitor.
More About LAFN’s CD-ROM
Since last month, a problem was noted using LAFN’s Startup CD-ROM for people who already have an ISP, like AOL or Earthlink. The results were not pretty. It is too complicated to rely on the automated features of any single ISP’s startup CD-ROM to keep from wiping out another ISP’s connection. The above mentioned web page discusses some strategies for preventing problems with multiple ISPs. You need to use either Netscape’s Profile Manager or Microsoft’s Users icon to establish multiple internet profiles. If you use Microsoft’s Users icon, you will have to log in as a different user depending on which ISP you wish to use (until IE 5.0 is issued). If you use Netscape’s Profile Manager, Netscape Communicator will ask you which ISP you are connected to each time you start Netscape Communicator.
If you have any questions or problems, please contact Herman Krouse or myself. I can be contacted by one of the following methods:
1. Page me by phoning 800-516-3104 and leave a voice message.
2. Send me e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
3. Send me “snail” US Postal Service mail at Frank Chao, PO Box 6930, Torrance, CA 90504-6930.
At our request, Bill Matar has provided some advance information on the product that will be presented at our February 11, 1998 general meeting. Your editor saw a presentation a year ago at Comdex and was quite impressed. Be sure not to miss it.
See Alps Printers on Feb 11 By Bill Matar
Why should you buy the Alps printers ver. Ink Jet printers.
Alps Micro Dry Printers Ink Jet Printers
Waterproof Ink runs
Plain laser paper Special paper required
Metallic, white & foil inks No metallic, white nor foil inks
Tshirts transfers washer safe Tshirt transfers wash away
The new MD-5000, with an astounding 2400 DPI output, takes your printed materials to a dramatically higher level. To enhance your creative projects even more, consider our finish ink to produce photo-realistic glossy color images, even on plain bond paper!
The MD-5000 gives you brilliant 2400 DPI print quality, unlimited creative choices, and professional printing results all in one simple operation. With more color, ink and printing options than any other home or office printer, the MD-5000 leads the way in desktop printing.
Optional Accessories include:
USB (Universal Serial Bus) interface for iMac.
SCSI interface for Macintosh
PostScript 3 software
Dye Sublimation upgrade Kit
The advantage of the Alps printer is that it comes with separate cartridges for each color so consumers do not have to replace the whole color cartridge if they run out of one color. With the Alps printers you can simply change one color at a time and use its full capacity.