Houston We Have a Problem… 005 07/10/06


Bankable Mac?

I have invested in a nice new Apple Mac as my old one was well over the hill. I have also changed my ISP to BT. The issue now is that I can get onto every Internet site except my bank. I have tried everything, the bank says it is BT’s fault and BT, with whom I have spent a total of one and a half hours on the phone insist it is the bank’s fault.


Short of changing my bank I have run out of ideas. Incidentally I can access the site from a friend's PC (not Apple) who is also with BT Internet.

Barbie Short Ayrshire


A. We can discount a fault with your PC or its operating system since there are no problems with other web sites; and because the site is accessible from your friend’s PC your bank and BT also get a clean bill of health. That leaves us with one other possibility, some software on your computer, most likely your web browser, Firewall or antivirus program, is blocking the site.


You should be able to find out which one it is by a process of elimination. I would begin by temporarily disabling the firewall then if that makes no difference switch off your anti-virus program (don’t forget to switch them on again afterwards). If the site remains inaccessible then try another browser. I suggest Firefox (www.mozilla.com/firefox/all.html). If you can log on through Firefox then check your browser’s security settings.



Side by Side Scan

I would like to display the front and back of an item on the same image. I have no problem with scanning but how do I get the second scan to arrive beside the first?

Amoret Tanner, by email


A. If I understand you correctly you want to be able to create a document, presumably for printing, showing the two scanned images on the same page. If so then the simplest method is to insert both images into a Word document (Insert > Picture > From File). Once on the page you can use the ‘handles’ to change the image’s size; to control their position go to Format > Picture and select the Layout or Position tab.



Moving Address Book

Having grown weary of my old and slow Windows 98 PC I bought a Windows XP laptop and launched into broadband. My problem is that I have a fairly large Address Book on the old desktop PC, and an equally large number of folders containing e-mails sorted by subject, and I cannot work out how to transfer them to the laptop.


Can you tell me how to do it? My local computer service centre doesn't know, nor do any of my more computer-literate friends.

Hilary Ives, by email


A. The Windows XP Files and Settings Transfer Wizard will copy everything you need to your new PC, including your email accounts, Address Book, messages and the contents of the My Documents folders. The data can be moved using a variety of methods, including a transfer cable, your home network or on recordable discs. To launch the Wizard and check your options go to Start > Programs > Accessories > System Tools and follow the prompts. Incidentally, this is a very basic feature in XP and hardly a secret so I would give those local experts a wide berth in future…



Teenage Trauma

My teenage son kindly installed a 4-port USB hub in my PC after he or his sister broke the original. As a consequence I am now unable to burn any CDs as the computer informs me it cannot detect a recorder. In fact has two one DVD/CD and one CD writer. The computer runs Windows XP Home Edition.

Peter Millward, Plymouth, Devon.


A. If your son has been poking around inside your PC you should check that the data ribbon cable, which connects to both drives, hasn’t come adrift from its socket on the motherboard. Otherwise in Windows open the Device Manager (Winkey + Break > Hardware > Device Manager). Double click on CD/DVD drives, then right click on the first drive, select Uninstall, click OK and reboot. Repeat for the second drive. When the PC reboots it should automatically detect the drives and reinstall the driver software.


If the drives still do not show up in Windows then there may be a problem with them being recognised by the BIOS (Basic Input Output System) program, which configures the computer’s hardware immediately after switch on. You will need to refer to your manual about how to access the BIOS menu (usually by pressing a key or combination of keys at switch on). When the BIOS program starts go to the disc drive menu and manually select the two drives; do not touch anything else! Save the settings, Exit and reboot.




© R. Maybury 2006 2509


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