Issue 198 - July 31, 2002

ISSN 1488-3163; PC Improvements © 2002
==== 2427 Subscribers in 57 Countries ====

Welcome to the 198th 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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Well, if you were worried about what would happen with PCIN 28 years from now when I retire, worry no longer! Andrew Graham Wing was born on Saturday, July 27, 2002 at 5:05 p.m. He is as cute as can be and both he and Mommy (Lisa) are doing great.

Andrew Graham WingAndrew Graham WingAndrew Graham Wing

You can see all of the pictures at

Graham and Chris

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Deep Linking Takes Another Blow

"Using a search engine to locate stories on newspapers' sites violates European Union law, according to a recent ruling by judges in Munich's Upper Court.
The ruling is the latest legal decision in a two-year battle between German newspaper Mainpost and German search service NewsClub. Mainpost charges that NewsClub violated the law by searching through and linking directly to Mainpost content."

For more info:,1283,54083,00.html

Could Hollywood hack your PC?

"A draft bill seen by CNET marks the boldest political effort to date by record labels and movie studios to disrupt peer-to-peer networks that they view as an increasingly dire threat to their bottom line.
Sponsored by Reps. Howard Berman, D-Calif., and Howard Coble, R-N.C., the measure would permit copyright holders to perform nearly unchecked electronic hacking if they have a "reasonable basis" to believe that piracy is taking place. Berman and Coble plan to introduce the 10-page bill this week."

For more info:

At Grocery Checkout, No Wallet Needed

"A handful of grocery stores in the United States are testing fingerprint imaging machines that enable shoppers to pay for their purchases simply by putting a finger to an electronic pad.
Shoppers who demand a speedy checkout process and retailers who are battling credit card fraud laud this new application of biometric technology, but some consumers worry that it could expose them to being tracked by government or industry."

For more info:

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POLL of the WEEK

Here are the responses from the last poll:

What is the most time you've spent at the computer for personal use?

< 1 hour    2.67 % (2)
1 hour      0.00 % (0)
2 hours     4.00 % (3)
3 hours     9.33 % (7)
4 hours     5.33 % (4)
5 hours     5.33 % (4)
> 5 hours  73.33 % (55)

Total votes: 75

Visit to participate in the new poll this week:

How many emails do you get a day?

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


How do you get a cassette tape recorded in such a way that it can be saved as a MP3 file on the computer. I know how to go from a .wav file to an .mp3 file. I do not know how to go from a cassette tape to a .wav file.


None yet.

To post a response, visit the Software How-To forum at and click on the "How to make MP3 from cassette tape" subject.

Visit to post a question of your own.

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Check out these new or updated pages on the site:

Outback Plus 3.0 Software Review

Microsoft Office Keyboard Hardware Review

VMWare Workstation 3.1 Software Review

Microsoft Wireless IntelliMouse Explorer Hardware Review

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Microsoft Office Keyboard Hardware Review

"I've always been one who thought that a keyboard was a keyboard. As long as it has 26 letters, 10 numbers, and some other useful symbols, then it is fine with me. But recently I acquired a Microsoft Office Keyboard to review and I certainly don't think that anymore!
Even though I turned off some of the special features, there were still plenty of features that were very useful. An advanced user will enjoy using the keyboard, while a beginner will love learning to use a computer with this keyboard. They will get used to the new features as if that is the way keyboards are supposed to be. The bottom line is that for about 2x the price of a basic keyboard, you will find this to be a keyboard that will more than double your effeciency and enjoyment."

Read the full review at

Use PC Speaker for sound

"Speak.exe contains a Microsoft Windows sound driver that allows most .wav files to be played on the PC speaker on most computers not equipped with a sound card. This article describes how to obtain, install, and use the PC speaker driver with Windows 95, Windows 98 and Windows Me."

Visit;en-us;Q138857 to download the file and read the instructions.

Use the System Configuration Editor

If you have Windows 95, 98, ME, and 2000 (I'm not sure about XP) you have a program on your computer called System Configuration Editor. This can be a very useful utility on the Win9x systems. If you run this program, you will be able to view and edit the following system files:
autoexec.bat, config.sys, win.ini, system.ini, and protocol.ini
There may be a shortcut for this program in the Start - Programs - Accessories - System Tools folder. If not, then from the Start - Run window, type sysedit and press enter.

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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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Graham Wing can be reached at
Chris Empey can be reached at

Copyright 1998-2002, Graham Wing. All rights reserved.

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