As a long time plus subscriber, I wouldn’t miss an
issue. Good stuff… Anyway, I was thinking about automating both scandisk(Win9x)/chkdsk.exe
(XP, 2K) and defrag on all of the computers in my office (all are Windows
XP Pro SP2). I was going to have them run automatically, first scandisk on
Tuesday night, then follow up on Wednesday night with defrag. I have done the
research to determine exactly how to accomplish this via the Task Scheduler
using batch files so no help needed there.
Hi Fred, Probably not very interesting to most of
your readers, but for those with shaky hands (aka a tremor) like me this can
be very good news. I found this software application called Mousecage. Its
intention is to help people with hand tremor control their computer mouse. As
you will understand, using a computer mouse is often impossible for people
with a hand tremor. At first, Mousecage needed some getting used to, but once
I did that, it helped me enormously. For the first time in ages, I can now
handle the mouse without frustration! I found Mousecage mentioned on a Dutch
website, but the company that developed Mousecage is UK based (I think) and
has an English website: http://www.mousecage.org .
Fred, I resubscribed to the Plus! edition— that’s an indicator of how
much I enjoy the newsletter.
What are those numbers and letters that some sites want you to enter for
security reasons (I notice eBay has started to use the same on some entry points
to their forms).
Hi Fred: I have a very short list of trusted sites in
Internet Explorer–which I usually only use on MS’s web site. But IE
exhibits a weird behavior when I go to the trusted sites–it tells me that
I’m going to a trusted site and asks if that is OK.
Fred, You’ve had many discussions on optimizing the
Windows XP boot-up time, but I’m now experiencing a slow shut down time.
After clicking Start/Shut Down, there is often times a long period of time
before the shut down dialogue window pops up. This is even after I’ve
closed all open programs. I think this slow shut down time can sometimes
relate to hard drive intensive activities involving a lot of temporary file
storage, and the hard drive is spending time purging these files. I can
correlate this to when I had recorded CD’s or DVD’s during a session. But
other times I only had the computer on to read email (in Outlook) and/or do
a little web browsing. What else can be slowing my shut down time and what
can I do about it? Thanks for the great newsletter. —Greg Ray
Hi Fred, Regarding reader Garrett Stevens’ post on
MP3 (in the Plus edition 07-28-2005) there was some good information on
ripping, burning and using MP3 files. One thing that I disagree on is the
sound quality of 128k bitrate. I use the Lame codec and maybe I have a tin
ear, but the 128k bitrate sounds good to me. It would be a waste of file space
for me to encode in anything faster than 128k because I can’t hear any
improvement in the faster bitrates. I would encourage others to try the 128k bitrate and compare for themselves to the faster bitrates. It could be that
they can’t tell any improvement in the sound quality either. I too use the
MMJB to rip and convert files between Wave and MP3 and it works great for me
also. I have used the MMJB to write the files to CDs but usually use Record
Now! to write to disc and I seldom create a coaster. By the way, I love your
newsletter and have been a subscriber to the Plus edition since its debut.
Best value for my money I could spend. —Larry Peterson.
In "Windows Genuine Advantage" Glitches?" (#10 in
and "Windows Genuine Advantage" Glitch Confirmed (#13 in
http://langalist.com/plus/newsletters/2006/2006-06-08plus.asp ), we
discussed a growing number of issues surrounding recent version of the WGA tool
that Microsoft is installing via Windows Update.
Computer guru John Woram (
) recently tussled with ZoneAlarm, and shared his frustrations:
Speaking of "Symantecification" (above) there’s also "Adobefication:"
Look at how bloated what once was a simple, small PDF reader has become. As a
result, a number of people have produced smaller, simpler tools that do what the
original Adoba Acrobat Reader did— let you read PDFs, period.