Issue 211 - October 30, 2002

ISSN 1488-3163; PC Improvements © 2002
==== 2215 Subscribers in 56 Countries ====

Welcome to the 211th 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'm sitting here at my desk finishing up the newsletter. Andrew is falling asleep in his bouncy chair beside me. I love being a Dad! Every day that goes by brings something new. Andrew is so much more alert than before. He smiles all the time (sometimes even when he cries!) and we just love him to pieces.

Many of you know that I've had some desktop wallpaper of Niagara Falls for a while. I've moved where the pictures are. You can now find them at

Graham and Chris

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MSN, Yahoo pose threat to AOL crown

"America Online will lose a good chunk of its subscribers if it fails to develop a compelling broadband offering, a study released Monday concluded.
AOL, currently the largest Internet service with 35.3 million subscribers, could see its main rivals Microsoft and Yahoo close in on that lead by luring broadband-hungry AOL users to their own high-speed services, according to Forrester Research. While still relatively new, Microsoft's MSN and Yahoo's broadband services are priced low enough to lure on-the-fence AOL users."

For more info:

Who owns your e-mail?

"Nancy Carter has a message for Internet service providers: Keep your hands off my e-mail.
The Toronto-based freelance TV producer has been battling U.S.-based Group for the past 16 months over a billing dispute she says may have cost her a lucrative job opportunity. Now she wants $110,000 in damages over a policy that led's Canadian subsidiary to keep her ISP account open for incoming e-mail even while denying her access to the account."

For more info:

Reuters hacks accused of hacking

"Reuters, arguably the world's best known news agency, stands accused of hacking today amid accusations that it broke into the computer systems of Swedish IT group Intentia to publish its results ahead of their official release.
Intentia said it would file criminal charges today after its internal investigation of how its disappointing third quarter figures came to be obtained before their scheduled release pointed the finger of blame at Reuters."

For more info:

Spam Law Foe Reverses Direction

"Spam is reaching such epidemic proportions that even the Direct Marketing Association (DMA), which has staunchly opposed any federal anti-spam bills in the past, now plans to seek help from Washington in the form of legislation designed to slow the proliferation of 'unsolicited and untargeted' e-mail.
Earlier this year, the New York-based DMA joined the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Financial Services Coordinating Council and the National Retail Federation in testifying against anti-spamming legislation introduced by Senators Conrad Burns (R.-Mont.) and Ron Wyden (D.-Ore.). The trade groups have traditionally opposed any legislation that would limit their members' ability to use e-mail as a direct marketing tool.
Now, however, the DMA wants federal legislation."

For more info:

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POLL of the WEEK

Last Week's Poll

How long does it take to completely rebuild your computer?

< 2 hours voting results 25.00 % (15)
One morning, afternoon or evening voting results 25.00 % (15)
One day voting results 25.00 % (15)
One week voting results 8.33 % (5)
More than one week voting results 1.67 % (1)
I am never finished voting results 15.00 % (9)
Total votes: 60

This Week's Poll

Do you pay to gain access to any web sites?


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


I want to re-format my hard drive, but don't know how to re-start my pc in MSDOS. I'm running Windows ME.


Create a boot disk from Windows ME.
Start > Settings... > Control Panel > Add/Remove Programs > [Boot Disk]
Restart the computer with the Boot disk in the floppy diskette drive.
On the "Windows Millenium Boot Menu" that appears, select Command Prompt.
Once you're at C:\>, type "FORMAT C: /S /Q" and hit ENTER.
After that, restart the computer with the boot diskette in the drive and the OS (Windows) installation CD in the CD-ROM drive. Follow the on-screen instructions to reinstall the Operating System.

To post a response, visit the Software How-To forum at and click on the "MSDOS" topic.

Visit to post a question of your own.

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Check out these new or updated pages on the site:

LG GCE-8400B 40x 12x 40x CD-RW Hardware Review Search

Some Useful Registry Tips

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Color-Code Incoming Mail

This was the PC Magazine Tip of the Day yesterday:
"Color-coding e-mail messages automatically as they arrive in your Inbox can help alert you to messages from a VIPs (such as your employer, or important clients). To do this, click the Organize button on the standard toolbar, then select the Using Colors option. In the field next to Color Messages From, type in the desired name, select a color (red is the default), and click the Apply Color button."

Organizing Microsoft Access Queries

This is from Chris:
" I have been developing in Microsoft Access for several years now. As development progresses, the number of queries, tables and forms grows. Keeping functions organized, especially when utilizing multiple queries, tables and forms for a function, can become daunting. Help yourself by organizing these into groups within Access. In the main Access window, right click in the navigation bar and chose new group, then rename the group to something descriptive. Now, simply drag your selected queries, tables, reports or forms to the group to organize all object related to that particular function."

Windows XP Tips

"Welcome to the definitive online guide for users and soon-to-be users of Microsoft's newest operating system Windows XP.
Check out the features section now to find out more about Service Pack 1 for Windows XP - get the lowdown on what it contains and why you should be upgrading. Meanwhile, if you've got questions, visit the forums to find answers!"

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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

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