Weekend show, 27 April 2003

Tips & Hints

Posted 30 April, 2003

Spam is not the only email problem computer users encounter. All of us who receive lots of e-mail are driven mad by huge attachments, or senders who don't tell us what the actual content of an e-mail is. So we revisited e-mail etiquette and attachment management.

As usual we had a diverse range of callers. Including a few with answers that we didn’t know. A few callers had more questions about e-mail.

Web Mail

You don’t have to use an email program to check your mail. Collecting your email through a web browser is a convenient way to access your mail when you are away from home. It is also a way of checking for spam, inappropriate mail, or huge attachments without letting them onto your computer.

Most Internet providers have a web based mail service that allows you to access your mail from a web page. If your provider doesn't have this function, web services like mail2web provide it. Anti-spam programs like Mailwasher and mail clients such as Pegasus Mail allow you to view your mail and delete any noise before downloading it.

Bigpond hassles

Telstra Internet subscribers have been affected by a ban put on Telstra by America On Line. The ban is because Telstra have been slow to deal with accounts that are sending spam. Telstra have starting addressing this problem.

The effect of the ban is email from Telstra has been blocked by AOL and some websites aren’t accessible. To get around the email problem you will have to use an alternative e-mail account. If you don’t have one then a free e-mail account from services like Hotmail or Yahoo is the answer.

For web surfing, you will have to use a proxy server. A list of publicly accessible proxy servers is available here. You can then set your browser to go via these proxies. Depending upon your configuration, you may be able to use these proxies for services like ICQ and Real Player.

Recovering old documents

PFS First Choice was a popular word processor some years ago. Some lucky souls are still using computers running it. While this is good in terms of getting use out of a computer, it is a problem when it comes time to upgrade.

There are a number of conversion programs, but a simple solution is to save the PFS files into Rich Text Format (RTF.) That way you can open them in MS Word or Wordperfect without losing the format. Microsoft have a knowledge base article on the subject.

Thanks to all the callers who got through, particularly those who had suggestions and solutions for other callers. For those who didn’t get through we’ll next be on the Weekend show at 10.30am on 1st June. Hope you can tune in then.

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