Author Archives: Kathleen Atkins

Kathleen Atkins

About Kathleen Atkins

Kathleen Atkins is the Windows Secrets associate editor. She's also a freelance writer, editor, and photographer. Prior to joining Windows Secrets, she worked at Microsoft Press.

When simple answers raise more questions

The problem: You can’t change Vista’s Desktop Backgrounds settings. So you wonder whether you have a permissions or a malware problem.

That’s what Lounge member kjvbible1611 was thinking as he posted a query in the Lounge. He was helping an 11-year-old boy, who wanted to make the Superman logo his desktop wallpaper.

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Welcome to the Lounge’s new room: Social Media

How to count the ways people are busy on the Internet? If you guessed someone in the world is checking in on a Facebook account, you’d be right roughly 750 million times.

Fifty percent of active Facebook users are signed in on any given day, according to Facebook statistics. And Facebook isn’t alone in finding social-media methods of connecting us: Google is launching Google+, MySpace still commands a following, and other sites wave their banners at us in our electronic neighborhoods.

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Intrepid spider-catcher impresses child

Giant spiders don’t appear on the kitchen ceiling every day, so it’s a videoworthy occasion when a father decides to demonstrate his wildlife-management skills.

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Microsoft-bashers won’t like this video

Surely you’ve heard — people are passionately for and against versions of operating systems.

That seems especially true of Windows. Whether it’s Windows 2000, XP, Windows 7, or maybe even Vista, every PC user has a favorite and mightily resists upgrading.

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Fine points of software purchasing mastered here

Not only do Lounge members know how to fix their machines, they know the best ways to get their gear.

That means they can advise on the arcana of license agreements and any other variables of purchases — including freeware alternatives. So when Lounge member Ron M came asking about OneNote for multiple machines, he got a survey of the possibilities in short order.

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Yikes! My software hates my hardware!

When a Lounge member installed SP1, his Windows 7 stopped talking to his monitor.

WSG appealed to his fellow Lounge members for assistance — and they responded with advice.

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Discovering the culprit is preferred

A recent spate of Windows updates seems to be implicated in a lost Internet connection for one Lounge member.

On advice from other forum members, Tigerlily39 is rolling back her Windows XP machine, one update at a time.

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Special Patch Watch update issue

As all long-time subscribers to Windows Secrets know, we typically do not publish on any fifth Thursday of the month.

Because of a quirk in our publishing schedule, it happens that the second Patch Watch of the month falls on this off week. We know how important news of the latest security patches are to all of you, so rather than putting off Patch Watch for another week, we are sending all subscribers this special update issue.

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Internet connection: frustration of the week

Failure to connect with the Internet wasn’t the only problem Lounge members had this week, but it showed up several times — each instance different from the others.

Lounge member jshollis, for example, can’t figure out why his Internet connection intermittently stops working. Despite his orderly series of tests and scans, the reason eludes him. He reboots, and all is well — until the connection disappears again.

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Alleged stockbroker ruins investor’s week

A phishing victim’s pain persists as he cleans up his PC after a bad encounter with an e-mail that turned out to be from a thief, not his stockbroker.

As Lounge member georgelee discovers, the hazards and headaches multiply after you bite on a phishing lure.

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