All posts by larryfbaker

 

The story is repeated daily in virtually every corner of society, whether it be the boss’s proposal for the future of your company, or the president’s chief envoy to the U.N. It rears its ugly head in grandma’s digital scrapbook, and invokes the shadow of defeat in the college student who spent countless hours in the study rather than party with friends.

It would be fair to say that many thousands of hours of productive work are literally flushed down the cyberspace drain daily, never to be recovered again. Indeed, the death of a file is a hard thing to face.

The funeral is brief, but recovery is long and grievous. Ouch, please stop telling me that I should have backed up my data. I don’t need to be scolded, I need to move on with the least pain possible!

Here are some thoughts to help you move on.

* Find a place to “save as”. This is one of the most powerful tools Microsoft has ever come up with. Saving a file with a save as allows me to not only name the file and put it anywhere I want, I can rename the same file as many times as I wish and then save it again fully identical to the other files I have saved.You may want to create a folder on the Desktop for faster access to your work .Simply right- click on the desktop then, New>Folder and a “new folder” will appear, just rename it.

saveas

In the above example, I am placing this file on the desktop and calling it” Prevent Senseless Tragedy”.

 

* Burn a CD or DVD with your valuable file(s). Most PCs now have a DVD burner to burn up to 4 Gigabytes of data. The process can be as simple as selecting the file you saved in a folder, then selecting “Burn” from the top menu. Simply put a CD or DVD in the tray and follow the on screen instruction. You may select several files, or just one.

BurnDVD

Above the highlighted file is   located inside the 101 Computers Blog folder, (from the desktop). Notice that “Burn” is selected. The computer will now prompt you to insert a disk for recording. The disk will be a long term backup.

 

* Copy to a USB STICK.   The USB “Stick”, “thumb drive”, or whatever it may be called, the little usb plug ins are really cheap as of this writing. About a dollar per Gigabyte, this is the most portable memory money can buy. It is easy to carry and can be an alternative to a disk or hard drive storage. When inserted into an usb port, this device looks like another hard drive in the computer. Saving your file is as simple as writing to a directory on your computers built in hard drive. Simply open the folder containing the file, highlight the file, then RIGHT- CLICK>SEND TO>Memory Stick (PNY in the following screenshot).

sendtoMemorystick

In this screenshot   after a “Send To” the USB memory Stick, the file is now safely backed up on the portable memory stick.

 

* Copy to an external USB Hard Drive.   The process is Identical to the Copy to a USB STICK, except the drive is a mechanical or solid state high capacity drive in an enclosure, which may or may not require external power supply. Most hard drives are in the 500 Gigabyte to 4 Terabyte rage. The cost is rapidly decreasing.

 

* Copy to “THE CLOUD”   This is what scares people. The cloud is simply “offline” storage, or remote storage. To save files this way requires a high speed internet connection. The process is not complex, but can be confusing. There are free and fee storage locations. Google is really big on this, as are Apple, Yahoo, and Microsoft. This is the subject of another blog, so stay tuned.

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* Copy manually with pencil and paper.   Definitely “Old School”! Not really the way to go unless you are a hardliner. You probably shouldn’t be using the computer!

Pencil and paper

 

As you can see, there are many options for backing up your files, and there need not be a pity -party, or a computer smashing Since you have now prepared yourself for any one of those unforeseen Microsoft “Blue Screens of Death, computer failure, or any other “fat fingered” data erasures.

Here’s to a worry free backup of your latest Masterpiece!….Larry

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Time Travel and the “Good Old Days”

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One of the things I would love to do in my old age is travel through time. Yes, visit  the past. I really don’t want to step out of the time machine and be run over by a chariot, but I would pay someone a hefty ticket price to sit on board and just watch time unfold firsthand and maybe snap a few high resolution photos and a post some video to YouTube.

I may not be able to visit the past by way of H.G. Wells’ invention, but the next best thing is already closer than you would imagine.  The home movies our parents made back in the days of the soda fountain, Elvis, and  the full service gas station are now coming out of their dusty storage boxes being reborn as digital family treasures. The same technology that was used to restore major motion pictures from the good old days, now is at hand for those on a more limited budget than Ted Turner had at his disposal when he re-mastered “Gone With The Wind”.

It was 1956 when my parents purchased a glossy yellow 1955 Buick Century with power everything. It was a very good year for our family of six, so mama just had to have a movie camera to archive the festivities wherever we went. Our family had some great times back then, and my mother filmed most of the highlights.  Two years ago I had all of the family 8mm  movies dating from 1956 digitized. The movies were scanned and re-imaged as Audio Video Image files or AVI computer files.This conversion allows for a complete edit, or cleanup of the movie so we now have cleaner images than we had in 1956. The detail is quite excellent. With a computer, unlike the old hot light bulb that melted film, stop-motion is easy, and allows for detailed viewing of your favorite images. I am also able to create and print photos from individual frames  using screenshots which are possible on the PC when the movie is paused. The entire process of bringing the old pictures  to the new technology  is often referred to as media conversion, or media transfer.

Time travel is indeed  possible, just not the kind H.G. Wells wrote about. Mr. H.G. Wells may have enjoyed this kind of time travel even more!

Pleasant Journeys!

Larry and Dad 1956

– Larry

larry@101computers.tv

 

 

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Selling your Soul online….or other stuff you might make a buck on

We have all had those sickening advertisements pop up in our face while we are innocently following a web link to something that has captured our attention. It’s almost like the midnight cable TV guys are out in force , now on the computer spewing ads in our faces. “How to make BIG money online in the comfort of your home!”.  Sometimes we sort-of believe those ads, and we really WANT them to be true….. but most are not. It seems that everything is just another lead to sell you a program or “system”, perhaps a $2,000 seminar to successful marketing. I know these things….. I personally have spent THOUSANDS of Bit coins…(I mean Dollars), most of which made the authors wealthy, not me. So what Can make you money online , without costing you a month’s pay??

Well, there have been a few people sell their SOUL online, but that’s been done, and probably not a good idea for a host of reasons, but it Has been done. Here’s a guy who did it:      http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/story?id=98892

There are several ways to sell online, but the three most popular are eBay, Amazon, and Craigslist. The truth is, you probably have a whole bunch of stuff that other people want Today, and are willing to pay for it. might even have enough stuff to finance a few house or car payments, all you need is a little bit of computer face time and a garage sale mindset.

Craigslist is simple, but remember it is Local, not meant to be Nationwide. Sell your larger expensive to ship stuff, but be careful…. meet people publicly when selling or buying, there are crazies out there! Just follow the instructions on Craigslist.com. I have had mixed results with Craigslist, both for vehicles and smaller laptops and parts.

Amazon is relatively new to selling on a grand scale, but they are moving aggressively to compete. I recently traded in some music CD’s,  there is quick money there, but you are basically giving the product to them ( only 25 cents fore some CD’s, 5 dollars for others),but Amazon has a lot of potential for making you wealthy. I have been told they will even warehouse your stuff. Again, check their website, open an account and tie your card or checkbook to the account, and you are up and running!

At 101 Computers, we actually sold a steering wheel for over seven hundred dollars not too long ago. It is always surprising to find exactly what people will or absolutely will not buy, I have been on both sides of the system, both buying and selling. It is quite thrilling to get  a money order in the mail, or better yet, money immediately,  via a Paypal account.

The big kid on the block, has a large commission, and Fees, but Nationwide exposure, it is worth the trouble if you can live with a significant discount for a sale price, AND around 15 percent worth of FEES! To get started, you need an account at eBay. Just go to eBay.com and follow their lead , get an account , and….if you are ready to rumble ( sell), attach a bank account and start making money….little money at first, but who knows…. maybe it IS your ticket to the big Bucks!

101 Computers can guide you through the whole process. Just call or email!

And if you do make it to the Big Time……Don’t forget the “little people”, (like me)!

Larry

larry@101computers.tv

 

Should you Trash your Windows XP computer?

There sure is a lot of news about Windows XP going the way of the dinosaur lately.

It was on April 8th of this year that Microsoft (bless their ever -lovin’ heart), finally let go of their multi-billion dollar Operating System Windows  XP  product support.
No longer will the 3:00AM updates to make sure you can get all those pop-ups in the Portugese language be installed for you as you read the morning news. The only people  now safe from total destruction  are companies and governments wealthy enough to pay for extended service contracts for Microsoft security patches and updates.
Is this a Bad thing? Should you “chuck” your computer and run down to Staples or Best Buy and get the latest Big Box machine with Windows 8.1…. or worse yet, throw in the towell, bite the bullet, and GOD FORBID….. go APPLE?
NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!
The good news is  that the house wont fall down if you continue to use your machine with Windows Xp.  After all reader, you are in good company.Lots of company. Worldwide company.
Microsoft has about 90 percent of the desktop computer operating system market as of this writing. Of that market share, Windows Xp, now 12 years old and counting, maintains a remarkable 28 percent hold. This means worldwide there are still millions of people using XP.Theres not a trash can big enough to hold those machines!
Here is the link to a wealth of information, and a snapshot of where the software you use compares to the market as a whole:

http://www.netmarketshare.com/

Feel free to comment and tell me if you plan to keep using XP for a while.
Larry