June 2010 - Q & A
Q: Which of the Microsoft Office 2010 editions is free?
A: starter edition will be free and they are about to announce that; however the starter edition is just Word and Excel.
Q: Does anyone in the group have any suggestions on how I can play games with my nine-year-old grandson who lives in Indiana? Could that be possibly be done by using Skype or is there a way that I being here and he being there can install a program so that we might be able to play together.
A: In Windows 7, you can go to the games and there is internet, Microsoft came up with Internet Checkers, Internet Hearts, Spades, and several games that are wild tangent. I do not like wild tangent games because of spy ware, but there are several of these gaming things. What you can do is use Skype or a chat window and sign into like, game 435 when there is an empty seat. Kids can do card games or whatever kind of game you are in. You can pick your opponent.
Q: So, is there like one table in front where each one of us can move in and it shows up on both. With Skype, can we also talk back and forth? In addition, is the available for those who do not yet have Windows 7?
A: Correct. You would use Skype for your chat, play the games, and include voice. You can go on with XP. There are many online games, but stay with major links. Microsoft has a lot of online games and Sierra, too. I do not know that much about gaming.
Audience comment: - Most kids have a Wii and you can hook up the internet to the Wii and play games that way.
Q: In Office 2007 there is a getting started selection you can hit on, go back and it will bring up an emulation of 2003 if you find your commands in 2007. There is also a lone custom toolbar across the screen you can populate with your personal commands. It is terrible, but at least it is there. My question is can you purchase Office 2003.
A: Possibly on e-bay, but not from major vendors so you may not feel too comfortable.
Q: I like to have everything that is new, but I am resistant going to 2010 because they do not offer an update. You have to get the full version.
A: Yes, there are no upgrades to 2010. Understand Microsoft-think and increasingly Microsoft money is made from corporate sales and not from people like us. What they are trying to get people to do is to essentially license a product on an annual fee and you can get Office with the software assurance and it gives you a certain amount of tech support and anytime a new product or conversion comes out you get a license for it automatically. That is what they want to sell, the product with software assurance. In order to encourage that, they got rid of the upgrade rates. A corporate decision, not much you can do about it. Understand you can use Office '97 I did it.
Q: Those of us with 2003 can we read 2010 documents. Do we use the same translator used for 2007?
A: Yes, same format as 2007. They changed the format between '97 and 2000 and then it was the same format to 2000, 2002, 2003 and they changed it for 2007 and it is same as 2010. There are three formats - '97 format, 2000 to 2003 formats and then 2007 to 2010 so far formats.
Q: Can you scan a document in 2010, then go in, and fill in the blanks.
A: In Open Office, you can, in Microsoft Office, no.
Michael: I had this as topic as one of the after-meeting SIGs three months ago. I can re-run that SIG and show you how to turn any piece of paper into a syllable, audible PDF. I can do that as a tutorial to show you that, it is easy to do.
Q: Is it something you can write up in TOE?
A: It is a little complicated and there are many pictures and would take up too many pages in the TOE. It is hard to explain in words and you have to understand how to do it by seeing it. I could do a PowerPoint presentation and put it up on the CIPCUG website. Another SIG I would like to work on is to how to record your screen as a movie and then save that image as a file. I could do a tutorial that way. I can do the whole thing and then save the tutorial of the video of how it looks, then save it as a file. That is something I want to work on in the next several months. I am running out of topics for my SIGs.
Toby: In Internet Explorer and in almost all of the new Office things and the default settings for Windows, you will notice that the menu bar - file, options, edit, view, tools, etc. does not exist. If you hit the ALT key, it will pop up. Anytime you are in a program that you expect to see that and you do not see it, hit the ALT key, which is right next to the space bar. It is a pop up to the menu so you do not lose your space. I do not know anyway to pin it back up. Get used to it, because it is here to stay.
We are going to revisit the security settings for Acrobat. In news broadcasts about internet security, it is stated that sometime this year, Adobe will beat Microsoft as the most vulnerable part of your computer where bad people can come in and take over. They are going to win.
Audience Comment: I work at AT&T and we have several patches of Acrobat 9 at work, and at home, I have Acrobat Pro. I receive updates from Adobe all the time and when installing, I lose my security updates. Apparently, they are aware they are vulnerable.
Michael: Adobe announced that they are going to do security patches once every three months. Everyone in the security field laughed. They have been doing it once every month and now they may go to doing it once every two weeks because they are finding so many to fix.
Q: How do you make boot disks for Windows 7?
A: Disks for repair - Start, type repair, take the first option, put your disks in, and go create repair disk. The CD is only a repair disk; it does not re-install Windows, only repairs your existing installation. It will boot only the computer you are sitting at. This is crucial to do if you want to be someone, like me, who helps other people. There are two types of repairs for the two versions of Windows -- 32-bit and a 64-bit repair disks. You want to make sure you are using the right repair disk if you are trying to repair a computer. When I do it, on the computer, I am working at and it is a 64-bit, then I will create a Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit repair disk. This will boot only the machine I am at and repair any problems I am having. That is why everyone should burn his or her own boot disk.
You can also do a restore disk. Once everything you want is installed and working correctly, in Windows 7 click Start and type "backup" and then select Backup and Restore from the options presented. On the left, select "Create a system image." If you have a new computer, it will take three DVDs, the more stuff you have on it, the more DVDs it will take. Once you get your computer set up and have all of the updates done and everything like anti-virus programs, etc., you burn it on to DVDs. Then if your hard drive ever dies, you have your own restore DVDs to put in a new hard drive for your computer. It will completely re-build your computer to the state it was when you created the disks.
This is a much better method of restoring especially if you bought a Dell or HP and they gave you system restore disks. By the time you do it, hopefully, you have already gotten rid of the junk ware that HP put on and you are creating an image without the junk. If you use the restore disks, you were given by the manufacturer, all the junk will come back like McCaffrey Security Suite 30-day trial and all the other things you do not need. Another thing is that some of the vendors, if you lose your restore disk(s) you are out of luck. If you burn them, you can save them yourself.
The boot disk boots an operating system on to the CD and you can make improvements and change things in your Windows system. You can use the boot disk when the hard drive is working, but if something happens, it will not boot correctly. It will not erase the data and there is an option to restore this image, what we just spoke about, and if you want, one of the options on the repair disk is "restore an image." If you do not click on "restore an image" it will not destroy any of your data. Just to be clear, there are two different kinds of disks to create. The first is the Repair Disk on a CD, which will allow you to fix minor problems with your Windows. The second is a Restore Disk set on several DVDs, which will allow you to recreate your entire system setup in the event the hard drive dies or becomes so severely damaged that recovery is not possible.
Q: On Office 2010 last time I checked it was $500 for 2010 Pro. Where would someone who is an average user buy the program at less cost?
A: They are going to cost a lot even with a discount. Our cost was around $460. The beta you can use until October 31, 2010, but it will nag you saying, "You are not activated." Using the beta is way to test the program, it will definitely shut off, October 31 or November 1 2010, and you will not be able to use it after that time. Office 2010 came out on June 17, 2010.
For most of the people in this room, Open Office is a better choice than Microsoft Office even if they cost the same. It is smaller, tighter, has more features you can use in anything other than a corporate setting and will read and write MS Office documents. And it is free (it's on the CIPCUG flash drive if you have it). The only program to watch out for is MS Access. If you have an Access database program, you'll need MS Office Pro at around $500.
Q: With the backup drive on the disks and if my hard drive dies, what would be my recovery process? What do I have to do before?
A: When it was much harder to do backups than it is today, when your hard drive died, you cried a lot. In many cases, it was cheaper to buy a new computer than to repair the old. What you do now is back up on DVDs, do a system repair disk, which is a bootable repair disk on a CD, and then say something dies on your laptop. You go buy a new hard drive, flip the laptop over, unscrew the hard drive cover, take the old hard drive out, and put in the new unformatted hard drive. Then hit the power button, start with a boot disk, it will ask if you want to restore, you click Yes, and put in the DVDs one at a time and in about twenty minutes, the computer is exactly how it was when you created the DVDs. If you have backed up your data to flash drives, stick your flash drive in the computer and restore your data and you are back in business.
You start the repair process with the CD and it creates a mini-operating system that will allow you to do things - to fix your computer or if you have a new hard drive and you want to restore, you can tell it to restore and point it where you have your restore image. What you restore to depends on what you have. If you burn the setup disk right after you bought the computer and you restore from those, your data will not be there only the set up from earlier on. If some of you were using like Carbonite or online backup storage, you would restore your computer, then go to Carbonite, and restore all your data. If you are using a USB drive and Windows 7 backup or something like that and you have created an image, continuously update the image with new data, and newly installed programs. If you have all your updates, etc. stored on a USB drive you have all that is needed should the computer crash. Carbonite does not restore everything only backup data, not programs.
Q: Are there any restrictions on the new hard drive you put in - physically.
A: Yes. One of the options is if your hard drive dies, you use this process, and you are back to normal. If the hard drive you have is too small and you go buy a larger one, you do the exact same process. The only restriction is that the hard drive you put in to replace the old hard drive, must be the same size or bigger it cannot be smaller. And it must be the same kind of drive architecture. You cannot put a Serial ATA (SATA) drive in a Parallel ATA (PATA) computer. As a general rule, if your laptop came with XP, it is probably PATA. If Vista or 7, probably SATA. There are exceptions, so be sure to check.