Education

Backup your system to your desktop, is not a good idea

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I have just spent 2½ hours cleaning a Win7 system that had run out of space.

My first thought was to back-up all the photos from the pc onto DVDs – yes I did need 2 DVDs there were 8.3 GB of photos; and once finished I found a handful of more photos but I left them on the PC – only about 1 GB.

I checked and I checked, but just couldn’t find 65 GB of data. I started to check installed programs and looking at the desktop to find and remove old installation programs. Lo and behold I found the offending file on the desktop.

The clever user had used his desktop as his backup media – because that wasn’t in his documents! – Hmmm – so if the hard disk crashes he could recover his data??? NO, NO I THINK NOT!

So with a 160Gb HDD and used approx. 85Gb for system, programs, Temp files & Recovery files – adding 65Gb and 10Gb swap file space – OOPS there is NO more space left to do anything! Clever – hum – NOT! I also think this is the 2nd time I have had this PC back for the same problem! Swear. #!$**##

I moved the backup to an 80 GB external HDD, ran CCleaner, and ADWcleaner and the system is happy.

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Scan (using Canon EX) and create a JPG file

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Today a friend of mine wanted to scan in a picture to publish it onto Facebook.
The all-in-one scanner-printer used was a Canon MG2100.
As each of the “Canon Solution Menu EX” works slightly different so I had to listen to what they were doing at the other end of the phone and hope that I could talk them through some sort of solution (without having the User Guide).

  1. We managed to scan using “auto scan”
  2. Then I was told that there was only a “Save as PDF” available
    (not quite correct but as always – we only see what we want to see)
  3. So we saved the scan as PDF – oops where did it get saved to?
  4. My instructions were:
    • click the Windows (Start) icon ->
    • click “Recent Items” on the left ->
    • find and click on the “just-saved-PDF-file”.
  5. So now we have the file open – what next?
    • Use the “Snipping Tool”
      – (which can be found by click the Windows (Start) icon ->
    • Click “All Programs” ->
    • find and click “Accessories” ->
    • and approximately in the middle of that list select and click “Snipping Tool”).
  6. When started it automatically is ready to snipe i.e. what you had on the screen is slightly greyed out
    • so now it’s just a matter of selecting the area you want to snipe –
    • click top left and drag the courser to the down right end position –
    • let go of the mouse and your selection is now placed on the clipboard and visible in the “Snipping Tool” window.
  7. You can now either save the image directly from the “Snipping Tool” or paste it into any applications – like Word, eMail or an image manipulation program.

That’s it – I am not telling you how to post/publish on Facebook.

I downloaded the Canon MG2100 user manual and saw that we could have skipped the PDF file and the snipping, but as I like the “Snipping Tool” I am only glad to pass that information on as well.

How to revive an old XP-PC to a useful PC

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First you have to ask yourself if it’s worth it – for instance:

  1. has it got enough memory (2gb or more)
  2. is the processor good enough (2mhz or better)
  3. is there 6gb or more free disk space on your hard drive

If you answered “Yes” to all the above questions you can then safely install Ubuntu (Linux) onto your PC/Laptop.

You can install it either as the ONLY operating system on your PC or change your PC to become a dual boot system; where you have to answer (at boot time) which system to use (a Ubuntu screen where both Ubuntu and Windows are the choices).

By using dual boot you can then when you need to re-boot and use Windows for example for your scanner – that is – if you can’t find the Linux driver for it.

Linux Ubuntu 14.04.3 LTS will automatically install:

  1. Rhythmbox – Music Player
  2. Shotwell – Photo Manager
  3. GIMP – Image Editor
  4. PiTiVi – Video Editor
  5. FireFox – Web Browser
  6. Thunderbird – Email reader
  7. LibraOffice – similar to OpenOffice Word, Excel, PowerPoint …

Ubuntu offers thousands of apps available for download from the software center. Most are available for free and can be installed with just a few clicks.

Windows 7 Gadgets

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Have you ever lost your Win7 gadgets?

You went out in the morning and they were there,
you came back late and they were gone!
Swear, swear!

How to get them back? This might work; at least it did for me.

  1. Type “windows feature” in ‘the search programs’ on the Start menu.
  2. Select “Turn Windows features on or off”.
  3. Wait while windows collect all the information
  4. Scroll down to “Windows Gadget Platform”
  5. If it is ticked, un-tick it and reboot your PC.
    then repeat step 1-4 and go to step 6.
  6. If it is un-ticked, tick it and reboot your PC.
  7. This time after the final reboot your gadget are back.

A great tool “Windows Live Writer”

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I was downloading Microsoft’s “Windows Essentials for a user who uses “Windows Live Mail” and as I, when installing only what the user needed,  noticed a program I hadn’t seen before: “Windows Live Writer” as well as the usual “Photo Gallery”, “Movie Maker” and “OneDrive”.

Windows Live Writer is a desktop blog-publishing application.
All I did was adding my account from wordpress.com and start creating a new post.

Things you can do within Windows Live Writer:

  • Add “photos”, “videos” and even a “Bing Map”.
  • It is easy to use: “Edit”, “Preview” and “Source”.
  • Release the post: by uploading “Draft” or directly “Publishing”.

Movie Maker by Microsoft

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Have you ever on your smart-phone or your camera shot a whole movie upside down or sideways?
When you look at it, at home on your PC, you could cry! What to do?  Bin it or try to recover it?
Don’t worry; Microsoft can help you here.  Download and install from the Microsoft download site: “Movie Maker”.
Read about it here.
For a Microsoft software it’s quite user-friendly, you can even publish direct to YouTube

Check for duplicated files

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How many duplicated files have you got?
Have you ever wondered if you have backed-up or copied a file to somewhere?
Have you ever wondered if and how many versions of the same file you have stored on your pc?

You don’t have to wonder anymore!

A student of mine was asking if I knew a way to find all the duplicated files stored on his computer.
I didn’t, but goggled for it, and yes, I did find a very useful small program dupeGuru (hardcoded.net);
which is a tool to find duplicate files on your computer. It can scan either filenames or contents.