Ask Rick 172 24/09/11
I have a minor but very annoying problem with
my Virgin V+ box. I cannot get rid of a
few minutes recording of Holby City. If I delete it, it returns the next day,
even if the box is switched off overnight. I have reported the problem to
Virgin who commented, unhelpfully, ‘Oh I thought we'd got rid of that’.
Keith Mathieson, by email
As Virgin’s response indicates this is a known
problem and it has yet to be resolved. The only solution I am aware of is to
reformat the V+ box’s hard disc drive. You will lose all recordings and
settings for future program and series recordings but it does clean the slate
and often fixes other sorts of glitches with the V+ box.
Switch it on and on the remote handset press
the Home button then press and hold Play/Pause until ‘E-00’ appears on the
front panel display. Next, press the TV Drive button and the display changes to
‘E-01’. Now press Ch- four times or until the display reads ‘hdd4’ and the format
begins. This can take up to 8 minutes after which the display shows ‘rFt’ and
the V+ box reboots. You should wait at least ten minutes after the format to
allow the Electronic Program Guide to re-load, before trying to set any timed
recordings or series links.
When purchasing my Android smart phone I was
told that there would be no need to install anti-virus software for web
browsing. I’ve always been sceptical of this advice, and I now notice that
major anti-virus manufacturers are producing protection for Android
phones. Are they necessary and if so
will it affect the phone’s performance?
Conrad Eades, by email
There’s no need to panic, yet… Android is based
on the Linux operating system, which is very secure, however, viruses, trojans
and spyware do exist. The threat is growing and eventually anti-virus software
will be necessary but at the moment the biggest problem is that users forget
that smart phones are computers and drop their defences or take risks. Android
has an effective safeguard against infections and users have to give permission
for apps to install files or access information so when installing an app check
for suspicious requests. For example, there is no good reason why a simple game
or compass utility, say, would need to access your messages or contacts.
Disabling security measures or ‘rooting’ an Android phone is just asking for
trouble and only download apps from trusted sources, such as the official
Android Market. Avoid pirated media like the plague. Keep your phone’s system
software up to date and check battery consumption; an unexpected or rapid
overnight drain might indicate an infection. The rest is simple commonsense.
Don’t click on adverts and pop-ups, do not respond to unsolicited emails or
spam and avoid storing private or personal information on your phone,
especially online banking PINs and passwords.
If you still feel vulnerable then by all means
install some anti-virus software. The freeware offerings should be able to cope
with all current threats. In Android Market have a look at Anti-Virus Free,
AVG, Dr Web Light, Lookout Security, Norton Mobile Lite and NetQin. If you
experience a slow-down or increased battery consumption simply try another one.
Following the placing of an online order with a
well-known cosmetics company, my wife completed a request to review a recently
purchased product. After typing it in she was asked if she would like to add a
photo. It suggested she might like to use one of her own images. To her surprise
up came several pictures, including one of the dog and myself. Quite amazing,
how do they do it?
Don Turner, by email
The first time this happens it can be quite
disconcerting but it’s nothing to worry about. When you click on a web page
button to choose an image you are seeing pictures stored on your PC. The
browser sends a command to open Windows Explorer and displays the contents of
the Pictures/My Pictures folder, where your photos are normally stored. When
Explorer is set for Thumbnail or Icon view your pictures will appear. All this
happens locally. None of the images displayed on the screen have left the
computer or are visible to anyone, else until you make a selection and click
the Upload or OK button.
I recently purchased a Samsung Internet TV,
Freeview Recorder and a set of Wireless Headphones. I want to be able to use
the headphones at the same time as the TV speakers are operating. However when
I plug the headphones base into the TV this cuts out the TV speakers. The dealer
told me I needed additional equipment, which they did not sell. Can you tell me what it is and where I can
Paul Phillips, by email
Until recently most TVs had at least two, and
sometimes three analogue audio outputs in the form of a stereo headphone jack,
right and left stereo line-level outputs on phono sockets and stereo audio
outputs on one or more SCART sockets. Your model sounds as though it has only
two audio outputs, an analogue headphone socket that mutes the speakers and a
digital optical or Toslink connector. The sales assistant was almost certainly
referring to a Digital to Analogue Converter (DAC), which changes the digital
optical output into analogue stereo via a pair of phono sockets. Converters
made by Lindy and Cyp are readily available from online sellers like Amazon and
cost around £40.00. However, you might want to check to see if your Freeview
recorder has any SCART AV output sockets. If so it’s worth trying a SCART to
headphone adaptor, which again is widely available and shouldn’t cost you more
than £5.00 or so. The only downside to this arrangement is that you need to use
the tuner in the Freeview recorder to watch TV, or set it to the same channel
as the TV so that the sound though the headphones matches the picture.
© R. Maybury 2011 0509