NWA-PCUG Newsletter Article, January 2006
The Deals Column
by Bob (the Cheapskate)Click, The Dealsguy
Greater Orlando Computer Users Group
bobclick@mindspring.com
(click to email author)


I canít emphasize enough the value of users group help and here is an example: Recently, while preparing to drive over to our beach condo for a couple of days, I wanted to copy a floppy disk containing some important files not backed up. When I attempted to copy it, the process stopped in the middle telling me my second disk was corrupted. I tried to stop the process so I could use another disk, but couldnít get the procedure to go away. Even when I killed Windows Explorer, then restarted it, and was ready with a new disk, it tried unsuccessfully to resume the process. Finally, I decided to reboot the computer in an effort to clear it, and when it tried to restart, all I got was the opening Intel screen and nothing more. After forcing the machine to shut down, and a brief pause, I tried to start the computer again and it would not go past the startup Intel screen.

Horror set in and I wondered what I might have done to screw it up, and what to do next. I was lost! All of a sudden I remembered something I had read only a couple days before in a users group newsletter while browsing a write-up about their Q & A session. A member reported that they could not get their computer to boot and finally removed a USB Flash Drive they had been using before they shut it off. It booted up just fine with the flash drive removed. Since I was using a USB Flash Drive while trying a new backup program, I removed it, tried to boot again, and was very relieved when the computer booted normally. I am running Windows XP Professional.

I canít remember which newsletter I read that in, but my thanks to the user group community and the newsletters I receive from them. I read them from cover to cover, especially about their Q & A sessions and sometimes find good information that I think my readers might use. It was interesting that when I tried rebooting again with a 256 Meg USB Flash Drive plugged in; it booted just fine, but would not boot with the one gig USB drive plugged in. I would never have thought to remove that flash drive so I hope my experience was useful to my readers.

Problems in Dell Land
I read in Ed Fosterís Gripe Line about a company that had bought almost 200 Dell Optiplex GX270 PCs, and when a known defect arose concerning a capacitor on the motherboard that tended to swell and cause problems, it should have been covered by their support contract, but Dell didnít live up to their agreement. They started to replace them, but after more problem boards were found, they stopped and instead eventually wanted the company to trade them in. For financial reasons the customer didnít want to do that and any negotiations finally stopped. It was known that some larger companies with the same problem had gotten it resolved, but nobody knows why. Up until now, I had thought Dell had a good name in the industry and I donít know the outcome. Ed Fosterís Gripe Line URL is [>A href="http://www.gripe2ed.com">http://www.gripe2ed.com], but I couldnít find this story posted at this writing, maybe because I read it in an August issue. You need to set up a password to access the Gripe Line Web site. For other information about the problem, check [http://www.dslreports.com/forum/remark,13709831].

For the folks who ask me about the trade shows, we recently worked the National Safety Council Show [http://www.safety2005.org] that was very interesting. It used about 500,000 square feet of exhibit space and had over 20,000 attendees from around the globe. You wouldnít think so, but I saw some cutting-edge technology featured there. Like many trade shows here, they had an evening party for attendees at Universal Studios.

We also worked the interesting Bank Administration Industry show. [http://www.bai.org] You would have easily recognized many names exhibiting there, which included well known ATM machines, security names and software companies like Microsoft, Adobe, Oracle USA and many others well known to users group people. The exhibit area was about 400,000 sq. ft. of area. Free food for the attendees too. Attendance was about 12,000. Central Florida is a hotbed of trade show activity, but we only work a few of them.

Still Good
Donít forget the deal is still good for the WebBuild Express software for creating your Web site. To download it at [http://store.esellerate.net/nfti/store], use the coupon code CPN8348901136, when it calls for it, to receive your 25% discount. I have a trial version but I have not tried it out yet. Between health problems and laziness, I donít have much for you this month, but I hope you took advantage of the APCUG announcements for deals.

The Lost Can Often Be Found
Have you ever deleted a file and later found you should not have done that? No problem, just go to the Recycle Bin and get it back. Come to find out though, it has been dumped by the Recycle Bin. Now you have another problem; but not if you have PC Inspector, which can do unbelievable things when it comes to recovering deleted files from your hard drive. Your hard drive has to be working properly for it to work.

Best of all, PC Inspector is Freeware and it can be downloaded at [http://www.pcinspector.de/file_recovery/uK/welcome.htm]. If you have used Secure Clean or Wipe Drive, forget about it. I found this information in a UG newsletter, but have not tried it personally.

An Announcement For NeoDownloader (Edited to shorten)
We offer a special. User group people get a 25% discount on the new version of NeoDownloader by email request..

September 27, 2005
Neowise Software, the leading developer of task automation tools, announces the newest major version of their NeoDownloader. This powerful multithreaded tool for automatic downloading of pictures, audio and video files now features the unique Web Spider technology that guarantees a fast and steady download for both high and low bandwidth. With its improved interface, new image viewer and media player, NeoDownloader expands the horizons of your web experience by improving your Internet browsing habits.

Each download job you trust to NeoDownloader starts with a profile where you can set file types, size limits, resolution, and scanning depth. The program scans the site of your interest and picks out only the files that match your profile. The download is fully automated but you can control it through the download progress window and fine-tune its performance. The download can run simultaneously with scanning, or after full scanning of the site is completed. Downloaded files become instantly available in the image preview zone of the program window.

The new version includes a collection of project templates and sample projects to get started fast. The built-in image viewer and media player provide instant access to downloaded files. A Drop basket and a set of hotkeys help you to launch a project from any application. The download library replicates source sites and organizes files in an easy-to-use way. The password list secures automatic login to password-protected websites.

NeoDownloader v2.0 Features at the Glance

    * Downloads pictures, audio and video that match user preferences
    * Filters for file type, size, resolution and URL keywords
    * Settings for the scanning depth for internal and external links
    * Up to 10 simultaneous connections
    * Support for password protected sites
    * New project profile settings
    * Drop basket facility to download from other applications
    * Built-in image viewer featuring slideshow and wallpaper setting support
    * Built-in media player

NeoDownloader runs under Windows 98, NT 4.0, Me, 2000, XP platforms and costs $39.95 (USD) for a single-user license. Free lifetime technical support and minor upgrades are extended to all registered users. A fully functional evaluation version is available as a free download at [http://www.neowise.com/ftp/NeoDownloaderSetup.exe].

Company Website: [http://www.neowise.com].
Product page link:
http://www.neowise.com/neodownloader/
Email:
[alexey@neowise.com].

Best regards,
Alexey Surkis
CEO of Neowise Software

That's it for this month. Meet me here again next month if your editor permits. Be sure to check the new announcement pages on my Web site. This column is written to make user group members aware of special offers or freebies I have found or arranged, and my comments should not be interpreted to encourage, or discourage, the purchase of any products, no matter how enthused I might sound. Bob (The Cheapskate) Click [bobclick@mindspring.com]. Visit my Web site at [http://www.dealsguy.com].

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