Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Internet Browsers - why you need 2...

Recently I've had some issues with my current browser -Internet Explorer 9.  I couldn't edit my own website and on certain websites I was not able to save my user name and password so that I don't have to type it every time I visit the site.  When I tried the same tasks using Firefox 8...no problem!

Every browser is different so you should check them out and see which one works best for you.  The browsers are free so it's a good idea to download at least 2 so that if you have a problem with one, you can easily switch to another.

Only 1 browser can be your DEFAULT browser, which means when you click on an internet link from your email or other program, the DEFAULT browser opens.  (Usually when you open a browser that is not your DEFAULT browser, you will be asked if you want to make the current browser your DEFAULT browser.  If you want to change your DEFAULT browser to the browser you just opened, click YES when prompted.)

Most PC's come with Internet Explorer already installed.  To download additional browsers, check out the following websites:


Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Create a Chart in Microsoft Excel with 1 Keystroke

If you want to create a simple column chart in Microsoft Excel, do this:
  • Click anywhere within the data you wish to chart and press the
    F11 key  (function key at the top of your keyboard).
This action works nicely if your data is consecutive with no blank rows
or columns between the data.  If your data is NOT consecutive, you will
need to select the data BEFORE pressing the F11 key.
The chart below is the result of clicking in any cell above and pressing F11.
Click on the chart below to enlarge the chart.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

What’s [Compatibility Mode]?

If you are using MS Office 2007 or 2010, and you view a file that was created in an earlier version of MS Office, you will see [Compatibility Mode] next to the file name in the title bar. 

While in [Compatibility Mode], the tools that are new in your version of Office will not be available.  Just convert the file to the current version to be able to use the new tools.  Here’s how:
1. View the file you want to convert.
2. Do ONE of the following:
     a.  In Office 2007 – click the Office Button in the top left corner.
     b.  In Office 2010 – click the File tab on the Ribbon.
3. Click Convert.
4. The following message appears:
5. Click OK.
NOTE: It is not necessary to convert a file unless you want to use the new features in the program to edit the file.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

How to make a document READ-ONLY

Prevent someone from accidentally changing your Word or WordPad document…

Make the document READ-ONLY
If you set the attributes of a document to READ-ONLY, when you open the document, the Title bar (at the top of the window) will show the name of the document along with the words [READ-ONLY].

This means you can make changes, but when you go to save the document, the program will require you to save the file with a new name or location to prevent over-writing the original document.

Of course if you really want to change the original document, just remove the READ-ONLY property BEFORE you open the file.

Here’s how to make a document READ-ONLY:
1.    Locate the file but DO NOT OPEN IT.
2.    Right-click on the file name.
3.    Click PROPERTIES.
4.    On the GENERAL tab, click the check-box for READ-ONLY.
      5.    Click OK.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Internet Explorer 9 - Where did all my tools go?

This hint applies to Windows 7 or Vista users

If you’ve upgraded your browser to
Internet Explorer 9 you will notice several changes.
Microsoft has uncluttered the browser by hiding many of the tools that were previously displayed. Listed below are a few of the changes.
  • Back button - this button used to have a down arrow next to it so that you could view and quickly return to any of the previous web pages in the current browsing session.  Now you just right-click on the Back button (arrow) and you will see the previous web pages.
  • Favorites and History - Click the Star icon in the top right corner of the browser.
  • Print, Save Web pages, and many other options - Click the Tools icon (next to the Star) in the top right corner of the browser.
  • Menu bar, Favorites bar, Command bar - Right click in a blank area next to the browser tabs and select the desired option.  Note: You can also right-click on the Home, Star, or Tools icon.
NEW - Windows 7 (this is cool!)
  • Pin a website to the Taskbar - Open Internet Explorer 9 and view the website you want to pin.  Click and drag the website icon from the address bar, down to the taskbar.  When you see the text, "Pin to taskbar", release the icon.  When you close the browser, the icon for the web page remains pinned to the taskbar.  Click once on the icon on the taskbar to view the webpage.

Friday, July 1, 2011

How to Insert a Logo or Picture into Your GMAIL Signature

If you have a Gmail account for email and you have set up a signature, you might want to insert a logo or picture along with your signature.  The following instructions explain how to do this.  It is a 2-step process.  First you must share the logo or picture on a public website.  I suggest: www.min.us .  Then you can copy and paste the link to the graphic into your Gmail settings.  Follow the steps below.

Setup Min.US Account & Upload Logo

1.       Go to www.min.us (use Firefox or Chrome browser, not Internet Explorer)

2.       Click Join, in the top right corner.

3.       Complete the required fields. 

4.       Click Start Sharing.

5.       Click Select. 

6.       Locate the logo or picture to upload.  Double-click on the file name.

7.       The logo is uploaded:

8.       Click Share.

9.       Select the link in the Direct Link box and copy it (Press Ctrl+c). 

10.   Log into your GMAIL account.

11.   Click on Settings> Mail Settings, in the upper right corner.  Scroll down to Signature.  (Note: These instructions assume you have already created an HTML or rich text Signature.)

12.   Click the cursor after your signature, where you want to place the logo/picture.

13.   Click the Add Image icon:

14.   Paste (click Ctrl+v) the Direct Link from above, into  the Image URL field

15.       Click OK.
16.       Scroll down on the Google Settings page and click Save Changes.
17.       Try it out!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011


Excel Users – here’s a cool feature for pasting rows or columns of data into a spreadsheet that already contains data, without overwriting the existing data …

1.  Select the rows or columns of data you wish to cut or copy.

2.  Cut or copy the data (press Ctrl+x to cut, Ctrl+c to copy or right-click on the selected data and click CUT or COPY).

3.  Click on the cell, row, or column heading where you want to paste the data.

4.  Right-click on the cell, row, or column heading and click “Insert Cut/Copied Cells”.

5.  If you selected an entire row or column, the existing data will shift and insert the cut/copied data.  If you did not select the entire row/column, but just specific cells, you might see a dialog box asking you how to shift the existing data if there is surrounding data that wasn’t originally selected.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

QR Codes & Smart Phones

Quick Response Codes are the latest technology rage!  Learn more about creating your own QR Codes and scanning with your Smart Phone.
About QR Codes
QR Codes are bar codes that can store phone numbers, URL's, email addresses and much more alphanumeric data.  They are internationally standardized.  These codes are similar to the bar codes that you see on products for scanning prices; however QR codes hold a lot more information.  These codes can store up to 4296 characters!

Smart Phones (cell phones that can access the internet) have free apps that can scan QR Codes.  If your Smart Phone doesn’t have a QR scanner, search for “qr code scanner” from your Smart Phone Market place.  I like the free app, Quick Mark.  You can download it from www.quickmark.cn .
Create QR Codes
Want to create your own QR code?  Go to www.qrstuff.com  to create QR codes for free!  It’s easy…

1.       Select the type of QR code to make.

2.       Complete the required Content information.

3.       Click “Download this image” (found under the QR Code preview)

4.       Click Save (IE 8) or Save As (IE 9) and choose a Save location.  Note: In Internet Explorer version 9, click the down arrow next to Save to select Save As, otherwise the file goes to the default Download folder.
Use your QR Code
Insert your QR Code like you would insert a picture.  Add it to an email, Word document, or any other program that allows pictures. 
Advantage of QR Codes over Hyperlinks
QR Codes can be added to print material.  Anyone with a Smart Phone can quickly access the information in the QR code.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Quickly locate information on a web page by using the “FIND” option!

If you open a webpage and can’t easily find the information you want, use the “Find” option to quickly locate key words on the web page you are viewing.

1. View the webpage with Internet Explorer.

2. Click “Edit” (from the Menu bar) and then “Find on this page”, or press Ctrl+f to open the “Find” search box.

3. Type a key word into the box.

4. Press ENTER on your keyboard.

5. If a match is found, the word will be highlighted on the page.  The number of matches found will display to the right of the search box.

In the screenshot below, "training" was typed in the Find box.  Training is highlighted at the bottom of the webpage.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Quickly Select Large Amounts of Data with the Control Key

The Control key on your keyboard allows you to quickly select large amounts of data in Microsoft Word or Excel.  Here's how:

To select the entire file:
  • In Word, open the document, press and hold the Ctrl key, and tap the letter A.  Release both keys (Ctrl+A). The entire document should be selected. 
  • In Excel, if all your data is consecutive, click anywhere inside the data BEFORE pressing Ctrl+A.  This selects only the data and not the remaining blank cells.  If you click in a blank cell outside your data and then press Ctrl+A, the entire worksheet is selected.
To select part of the file to the end:
  • Open the file, click your mouse where you want to begin the selection, press and hold the Ctrl and Shift keys together, and tap the End key.  Release all 3 keys (Ctrl+Shift+End).
The method above works in both Word and Excel, but if you don't want to select all columns in Excel try this:
  • Select the beginning row of data over to the last column you want to include.  If you only want to include 1 column, select the beginning cell.  Press Ctrl+Shift+ 
Your Excel spreadsheet has data in columns A - F and rows 1 - 2000.
  • To select all the data from A1:F2000, click in cell A1 and press Ctrl+A.
  • To select the data in cells A2:F2000, click in cell A2 and press Ctrl+Shift+End
  • To select only the data in column A, click in cell A1 and press Ctrl+Shift+ 

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Use the CTRL key to Copy

The Ctrl (control) key on your keyboard has many functions. Use it with your mouse to copy text or pictures in MS Word, or cells of data in MS Excel.

It works in most Microsoft Office programs!  Here's how:
  1. First select (highlight) what you want to copy.
  2. Press and hold the CTRL key on your keyboard.  (There are two CTRL keys. It doesn't matter which one you hold.)
  3. Click and drag the selected item with your mouse to another location on the screen while holding down the CTRL key.
  4. Next release the mouse and CTRL key.  A copy of the selected item will appear leaving the original intact.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

System Restore

With so many people experiencing computer problems, I want to remind you of a Windows tool that will return your system files and settings to an earlier point in time when your computer was working properly, without affecting personal files or email.

For example, if you have just downloaded a new program OR your computer automatically downloaded updates and now your computer isn’t working properly, you can use “System Restore” to restore your computer back to the way it was BEFORE the updates.

“System Restore” is available in Windows XP, Vista, and 7. 

Follow the steps below to run System Restore:

  1. Locate System Restore on your computer.
    2. In Windows 7 - Click START and then Type "SYSTEM RESTORE" in the search box.  Click SYSTEM RESTORE.
  2. The SYSTEM RESTORE wizard opens.
  3. Follow the instructions in the wizard.
  4. Allow ample time for your computer to restore to a previous restore point.
  • If restoring your computer to a previous point in time does not resolve your computer problem, you can reverse the system restore back to the current settings.
  • System Restore does not affect your personal files or email.