Author Archives: Fred Langa

Fred Langa

About Fred Langa

Fred Langa is senior editor. His LangaList Newsletter merged with Windows Secrets on Nov. 16, 2006. Prior to that, Fred was editor of Byte Magazine (1987 to 1991) and editorial director of CMP Media (1991 to 1996), overseeing Windows Magazine and others.

Don’tMake Me Beg! 8-)

If you think the LangaList is a
worthwhile read, just use the following link to recommend the LangaList to a
friend. Your friend just may find a new source of useful information; I just may
gain a new subscriber; and you just may win $10,000 for your trouble (full
details also available via this link):

Read More »

Windows 9x/ME Setup “Switches”

A software "switch" is a
modifier you append to a standard command to make it behave somewhat
differently. Here’s a trivial example: At DOS or in a Command windows, if you
type DIR you’ll see a listing of the contents of whatever Folder
("DIRectory") you’re in. But if you add a switch— "/w"—
the DIR command generates its output in "wide" mode, filling the
screen horizontally. With the switch, you’d type the command: DIR /W .

Read More »

For Advanced Users…

This is not the sort of thing that
will appeal to or be appropriate for everyone, but if you’ve been kicking around
PCs for a while, this tip from reader Arent Smit may catch your eye:

Read More »

More On Time Servers and Tools

In the last two Plus editions, we’ve
talked about time-synchronization tools, and many readers have sent in their own
suggestions. (Thanks!) If the paid and free synch utilities we’ve already
discussed don’t suit, a search at any major download site probably will turn up
a host of other options for you.

Read More »

WinMag.Com Changes Course On WinME

Speaking of WinMag.Com: On most
major issues, the folks there and I share similar views. But as a freelance, I
sometimes come to different conclusions than they do, and vice versa.

Read More »

New Variant On An Old IE Security Problem

Like the proverbial "bad
penny," some old security problems keep turning up.

Read More »

Many More Gadgets That Spy On You

In issues past, we discussed the
"CueCat," a handheld scanner that was promoted as a way to save the
world from the onerous task of typing URLs. (As if it’s all that hard!) But
under the covers, CueCat actually was a brilliant marketing tool: The more you
used it, the more the CueCat makers learned about you and your preferences, thus
allowing them to "target" you with advertising.  (See

Read More »

Granny Knows Best

Reader Sheryl Clark— who goes by
the nom-de-email of "GrannyC"— has an excellent suggestion you might
want to keep in mind the next time you’re doing major system work:

Read More »

None Like It Hot

Have you ever touched the surface of a working computer’s CPU chip— say, a
Pentium or an Athlon? These days, they get hot enough to take off your fingerprints.

Heat is the enemy of a CPU chip. The cooler a CPU chip is kept, the more stable it
is and the longer it lasts, simple as that.

Read More »