Saturday, May 20, 2006

Unplug Your Computers/Modems/Phones - During Threatening Weather

Springtime starts off another season of electrical storms. Just a reminder from Connections, Etc. to unplug your computers, your modems (if you have an external modem), your fax machines, VCR's, cable outlets, and your phone when the weather looks threatening outside. A lightning strike to the electrical lines and/or phone lines leading to either your computer or external modem can cause serious damage - and even a fire!

An electronic surge protector which includes a built-in phone line protector is a great idea, but it does not provide a 100% guaranteed protection. So, unplug, unplug, unplug.

- The Connections, Etc. Internet Team

Ask The Help Desk - What is an RSS Feed?

Question: I've heard about people getting Web content via RSS feeds? What is an RSS feed?

Answer: RSS, which stands for "really simple syndication" or "RDF site summary," is an Internet-based information delivery system to which you can subscribe to have news and other information delivered to your computer, much like a newspaper delivered to your front doorstep.

RSS allows news website developers to distribute their news and information to customers who gather it in software known as "RSS readers." This information usually includes the news website's headlines and article summaries that you click on for more information.

If a website offers RSS subscriptions, it's usually indicated with some descriptive copy and an orange button labeled "XML" or a blue button labeled "RSS." Just click this button, then copy and paste the appropriate web address URL into your reader to visit the site and retrieve headlines and article summaries you have requested.

- The Connections, Etc. Internet Team

Short Tutorial - How To Speed Up Slow E-Mail

Granted, e-mail is much faster than snail mail. But even e-mail software can slow down if you don't keep up with maintenance on your database. Have you noticed any of these symptoms?

* Slow launching of your e-mail program
* Slow opening of links contained in e-mail messages
* E-mail messages not showing up properly or not showing up at all

If this sounds familiar, it may be time to do some maintenance on the database where your messages are stored. The best maintenance you can do is to delete old messages you no longer need and then "compact" your database. To do this, follow the steps below.

Cleaning Up and Compacting Outlook Express 6.0 When Using Windows XP Home Edition

1. With Outlook Express open, click your cursor arrow on the "Tools" menu and select "Options."
2. When the Options window appears, click the "Maintenance" tab.
3. About half way down the window you will see the "Clean Up Now" button. Click on it and the "Local File Clean Up" window will appear.
4. Click on the "Compact" button.
5. Click "Close" and then "OK."
6. Quit Outlook Express and then reopen Outlook Express.

Cleaning Up and Compacting Entourage 2004 When Using Macintosh OS X

1. While opening Entourage, hold down the "Option" key on your keyboard.
2. Select "Compact Database" by clicking on the radio button.
3. Click "Continue."

If compacting your Entourage database does not improve its performance, repeat the process. However, this time select "Rebuild Database" from the choices.

- The Connections, Etc. Internet Team

Location: United States

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