The Digital Life, Houston We Have a Problem, 096 16/08/08
I am looking into
running two monitors from my Dell desktop computer. I have asked a couple of computer shops about this and am given
conflicting ways of how to go about it. My computer runs the present original
flat screen monitor from (I believe) the motherboard. Would it be possible to
buy a graphics card to install into the computer and buy a new monitor, if so,
Marcus Pugh, by email
Once your dual monitor
display is up and running you will wonder how you ever managed with just one
screen. It makes life so much easier and on my setup I have Word on the left
and my web browser and email programs on the right screen. Multi-monitor support
is built into Windows and it’s easy to set up but you must have a separate
video adaptor card for each screen, a single specialised card with two minotor outputs or you can use a fancy USB device that lets you drive a second screen, or multiple monitors
Normally you can’t use the motherboard’s integrated
graphics adaptor as one of the cards (though it may be possible on some Dell machines) so in most cases you need to buy two video cards (or one dual output card). and ideally they should
have the same basic specification but you might have to mix the connector types
if you haven’t got two spare PCI, PCI-E or AGP slots. Don’t worry, Windows will
figure it out. The second monitor should be the same size as the original one.
If funds allow they should be the same model, it’s easier to match the images
and makes the ‘join’ between the two screens appear less obvious. If you are
going to splash out on two new monitors shortlist models with very narrow
screen surrounds, so they can be put closer together. There’s more detailed
instructions in Daily Telegraph Boot Camp articles 412 & 413 at: http://tinyurl.com/6zazsq
Is it possible to tell the music library in iTunes to
delete duplicate tracks?
It lists them OK but I just cannot see how to remove them without
deleting each one individually.
Dave Craddock, by email
If there are only few
dozen copies showing when you go to Show Duplicates on the View menu then you
might as well delete them manually. The quickest way to do that is to hold down
the Ctrl key whilst you select the files, then delete them en-masse. Be careful
what you remove, though, some copies may be different version of the same song,
or tracks on different albums.
If you have a very large
number of duplicates then try this. In iTunes highlight the entire contents of
your Library and drag it to a new folder on your drive and it should only copy
the originals. Check to see that it has worked, if so you can delete the
original Library then copy the files back to the Library folder. Alternatively,
run a freeware utility called Double Killer (http://tinyurl.com/6o8e8e,
which seeks out duplicate files, of all types and then offers to delete the copies.
I have a couple of old
peripherals (HP printer and a Mustek scanner), which connected to my desktop
through parallel ports. I’ve now upgraded to a laptop running Windows Vista,
which only has USB ports. My question is: can I get an adaptor lead to continue
to use the old equipment with the new laptop, and would they work anyway,
considering the age gap in the software?
Steve Green, by email
USB to parallel port
adaptors are certainly available from the likes of Amazon and Maplin for around
£20 to £25 but in my experience they can be a bit hit and miss. However,
ultimately it all depends on whether or not there are any Vista drivers for
your printer and scanner and this tends to be unlikely on devices that are more
than three or four years old. Check the peripheral manufacturers support web
sites first, before you shell out on an adaptor, which in this crazy mixed-up
world costs only marginally less than some quite decent combination
I have recently
changed my web browser from Internet Explorer to Mozilla Firefox. When I used
Internet Explorer I found a way to backup to a separate hard disc drive the
Favourites listing. Is it possible to do the same for the Mozilla Firefox
Bookmarks', because I cannot find a record of them anywhere?
Tony Delve, by email
They are quite well
hidden and in Windows XP all of your Firefox Bookmarks and Links are contained
in a file called Bookmarks.html. You will find it in: C:\Documents and
Data\Mozilla\Firefox\Profiles\xxxxx.default (where xxxx.default is a unique id
code to your PC). Simply copy the file to the same location on your new PC. If
it is running Windows Vista, this will be:
Lost Without Explorer?
I have Internet
Explorer on all my PCs, but never use it as I much prefer Firefox. Is there any
good reason for not uninstalling IE? Several folk have hinted at dangers, but
no one says specifically what they might be?
Chris Gibson, by email
There are no dangers as
such but some web pages do not display properly in Firefox and you’ll have
trouble downloading Windows updates, so why bother? At the risk of repeating myself, the golden rule of owning a PC
(and most things in this world…) is if it ain broke, don’t fix it!
© R. Maybury 2008 2807