Get the most from your computer

Tips & Hints
Our Services
Contact us


Nightlife 9 May 2008

For the May Nightlife segment we looked at wireless Internet and the different forms of wireless. We also discussed dirty keyboards and the germs they breed.

Dirty keyboards

Because people don't always have the highest hygeine standards we recommend always washing your hands after using someone's keyboard, particularly after using keyboards in public places like Internet cafes.

A recent study by British consumer magazine Which! found some computer keyboards to be dirtier than toilet seats. So it's worthwhile keeping this in mind.

For your own computer, you can keep the keyboard cleaner by following basic personal hygeine such as washing your hands after using the toilet or cooking. If you are the type that eats near their system, then tucking the keyboard away while you are eating will save crumbs falling into it.

Mobile Internet

The main topic was wireless. While we looked at the different types of wireless, the main focus was the cost of mobile Internet, that is accessing the Internet from your mobile phone.

While our belief is this is the way of the future, some mobile phone companies seem determined to stunt the growth with outrageous pricing. We look closer at this and compare the providers on our mobile Internet page.

Callers questions

Callers problems included Acrobat Reader for Windows 98, exporting Outlook data, the prices of broadband data and the Windows XP service pack.

Acrobat Reader for Windows 98

Sandra called about her old Windows 98 computer which she uses mainly as a typing and email machine. The computer itself works fine except Adobe Reader has stopped working and she can't download a new reader for Windows 98.

While Abode don't make older versions of Reader easily available through their website, it's still possible to download it from the Adobe site by going to their FTP servers. Most web browsers will download Abode 6 if you point them to the Acrobat Reader 6 FTP location.

Exporting Outlook data

It's both a blessing and a curse that Microsoft Outlook stores all it's information in one big file. The advantage is it means transferring, backing up and exporting your addresses, emails and appointments in Outlook is very, very easy.

Julie asked about exporting Outlook. Doing this involves opening Outlook, then clicking file, Import and Export and Export to a file. In the different types of file export, we'd suggest choosing Personal Storage File (pst) type then choosing a name and location where you'll find it in future.

In our Backing up your email page, we describe how to backup Outlook and other programs and include a link to the Microsoft tool that allows you to back up your Outlook data.

Windows XP Service Pack 3

Greg's computer is having a memory error when he tries to install Windows XP Service Pack 3. It goes midway through the process, hits an error and rolls backs to the old setup.

Problems like these are why we never recommend installing new service packs when they are released. We're currently hearing of lots of problems with brand name computers running AMD based chipsets.

For the moment, we recommending holding back installing the Service Pack until all the bugs have been identified and fixed. This will take a few weeks.

Windows Vista

Peter asked about buying new computers with Vista. We prefer Windows XP but with many new systems you get no choice.

If you are getting a Vista system, then it's essential you buy a system with at least 2Gb of memory and a video card with 256Mb of RAM. Also be prepared to struggle with older hardware and software.

We have a full rundown on what we recommend on our computer specifications page. Computers to these specifications will run Vista comfortably.

Upcoming spots

The next Nightlife spot is scheduled for 10pm on July 18. We hope you can join us then. If you'd like to be kept up to date with our ABC schedules and other computer issues then please subscribe to our newsletter.



PC Rescue Pty Ltd
Suite 236, 4 Young Street Neutral Bay NSW 2089
©Technology Publishing Australia, 2008