Issue 179 - March 20, 2002

ISSN 1488-3163; PC Improvements © 2002
==== 2306 Subscribers in 57 Countries ====

Welcome to the 179th issue of the PC Improvement News. PCIN consists mainly of news and tips. There is something for everyone, and if this is your first issue, I'm sure there will be something for you. If you give me two or three issues, I know that you will come back for more!

You can reach me at with any suggestions or comments.

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I didn't get much of a response for the next special issue, so I've decided not to do it. I only had a few people email me their "success" stories that only happened because of the Internet. That's no problem though. The whole point of PCIN is to give you the content that you want. If you don't want that particular bit of content, then that's fine with us.

Well, I guess I've waited long enough for this one... I'm happy to let you all know that Lisa and I (Graham) are once again going to have a baby. Many of you are familiar with what happened before, which makes this even better. She is about 5 months along now, with a due date of July 19, 2002. We've had a couple of ultrasounds, but weren't able to tell the sex of the baby. Lisa is doing well. She makes a cute pregnant lady!

Graham and Chris

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Ottawa set to burn your CD, MP3 budget

"Rockin' on with your MP3 or burning music CDs on your computer will cost a lot more if the federal government has its way.
Newly proposed royalty charges will add a whopping $400 to the cost of a $600 MP3 player and at least a $1.23 charge to the cost of each blank CD or MiniDisc.
Old-fashioned cassette tapes will also face an additional 40c charge.
All the money will go to artists as royalties designed to compensate for home recording and dubbing of CDs."

For more info:

Chris: This is ridiculous. I will now be taxed with the proceeds going to a musician every time I backup my data. This would effectively more than double the costs of blank media.
Graham: Why not add $2.46 instead and give $1.23 to each to the recording industry and the software industry. There is just as much chance that a CD will be used to copy software as it will be used to copy music.

Judge Refuses to Halt Name

"Another day in court resulted in another stymie for Microsoft Corp. when a Seattle court judge found late Friday that the Redmond, Wash. software giant could not prevent San Diego's from using their name and releasing a competing operating system called LindowsOS.
But that won't prevent the company from pursuing a trademark infringement lawsuit versus the startup. Microsoft spokesperson Jon Murchinson told 'We are disappointed with the ruling but we intend to pursue our claim in order to protect the Windows trademark. Windows is one of the most recognizable brands in the world and we will defend the years of hard work that went into building it into a trusted name among consumers.'"

For more info:,,10_993621,00.html

Could Online Gambling Be Banned?

Just in time to become the prime topic at the upcoming 2nd Annual World Internet Gaming Summit, a Congressional panel has voted to amend the federal ban on interstate betting to include online gambling.
The House Judiciary subcommittee on crime has voted unanimously to OK an update of the Wire Act of 1961, which bans interstate wagering. The amendment would make it clear that the law applies to the Internet and other modern communications (read wireless) as well as telephone lines.
"This legislation is badly needed because there are a great many offshore sites that are sucking billions of dollars from American households," said Rep. Bob Goodlatte, the Virginia Republican who sponsored the bill.

For more info:,,4_990891,00.html

Africa Struggles to Get Online

It may take all day to phone Ghana from the country next door, but if you want the latest news from a shadowy group of rebels fighting in remote West African jungles, you can always go to their Web site. Small ads, chat rooms, government propaganda, dissident tracts, soccer scores, news, horoscopes, lonely hearts, pornography and racist rants -- Africa's Web sites have it all.

For more info:

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POLL of the WEEK

Here are the responses from the last poll:

When at work how much of your Internet access is for personal use?

I have no need to buy online                           8.11 % (6)
Uncomfortable; I will not do it!                       6.76 % (5)
Hesitant; I do it occasionally.                       20.27 % (15)
Comfortable; I do it regularly but still worry a bit. 32.43 % (24)
No Worries!                                           32.43 % (24)

Total votes: 74

Visit to participate in the new poll this week:

What sex will Lisa and Graham's baby be?

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Visit the new and improved PCIN FreeHelp Forum at to post your questions or answer others.


I'm having a recurring error in Microsoft Works Suite, specifically under WORD and Task Launcher. Making changes to certain task documents initially prompted error message and Global changes have been made to the template. Trying to get back into the document jouwduz.wiz caused a serious problem the last time it was open, then again with and growdus.wiz. I have reinstalled the program and that didn't work and I used system restore and the problem is still there. I believe is WORD, growdis.wiz is a grocery list wizard and jouwduz.wiz is a journal wizard. I have managed to change something I should not have.


Did you fully uninstall the program before reinstalling?
Also, after you uninstall the program, you can search for the templates that are damaged to make sure they are gone. Delete them if not. Then, reinstall the program. It's a roundabout way, but might be the most straightforward.
Or, you could see if there is a "templates" folder on your install CD and if it contains the templates you want to replace. Just delete those that are damaged and copy the original versions from the CD into the templates folder on the hard drive.

If you have a suggestion, visit the Software forum at and click on the "xp Changes to Global Template/Wizard " subject.

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Check out these new or updated pages on the site:

Avocent SwitchView KVM Switch Hardware Review

Connectix Virtual PC 4.2 Software Review

PurgeIE 4.04 Software Review

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Software for Windows 95/98

Visit to find a nice collection of Freeware. According to the web site, "Over the past few years I have written several programs most of these programs I have written to specifically cater for my needs as an IT Manager, some programs are complete whilst others are still in the Beta stages. My aim has been to write user friendly, simple and to the point software that requires only a basic knowledge to use. So as others may benefit from my work I have decided to allow it to be downloaded and used for free."

Perhaps one of the most interesting programs is Petsyb PC Lock UP V2.87 which lets you do a number of things to restrict access to your computer. Check it out at

Search Google Directly

Subscriber Bruce K emailed me regarding a little utility that is a cross between the Google Toolbar and the Address Bar that you can have on your taskbar. It allows you to start a search without having to open IE first. Check it out at

Avocent SwitchView KVM Switch Hardware Review

"As computers continue to come down in price, more and more people are finding themselves with several computers. The kids may have their own so they can play games and not mess up Dad's computer. Mom might have her own so she can work from home. Or maybe you are on your own but like to have different computers for different purposes. Whatever the reason, having all of these computers can take up a lot of room. If you are able to have the computers in one location, then one of the best things to do is to get a KVM (keyboard, video (monitor), mouse) switch. This allows you to have one keyboard, monitor, and mouse connected to more than one CPU at a time. The keyboard monitor and mouse would plug into the switch and the CPUs would plug into the switch. Then with the press of a button, you can access each CPU individually.
The SwitchView KVM switch is an excellent product for an excellent price. It has basic functionality, but does it very well."

Check out the full review online at

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PCIN is brought to you by Graham Wing. The opinions expressed are those of the Editor, Graham Wing and the Assistant Editor, Chris Empey. Graham Wing and Chris Empey accept no responsibility for the results obtained from trying the tips in this newsletter.

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