Ask Rick Maybury 2013

  

 

Ask Rick 280 26/10/13

 

Galaxy Space Saver

My Samsung Galaxy Mini was preloaded with apps from Google Play, which I never use. The problem is, I often get updates for them and then a message tells me there's insufficient storage space. I have to uninstall these updates to create space for the apps that I do want. How can I get rid of Maps, Street View, Voice Search and Play Books, once and for all?

Teresa Bullock, by email

 

Rather than uninstalling potentially useful apps you can easily move them, along with your own memory-hungry files (photos, media and so on) to the SD storage card. This would also be a good opportunity to upgrade your memory card and this model support cards up to 64Gb, which should keep you going for a while. The easiest method is to tap the Apps icon, hold your finger on the app you want to move for a couple of seconds, select Move then ExtSDCard and Move Here. You can do the same with the My Files folder; just tap All Files and select the folders that you want to move.

 

 

Fatherly Advice

I normally run AVG Free anti virus on my home desktop PC and recently changed to Microsoft Security Essentials, which is also free. I have never had any issues that I'm aware of but I'm looking at getting a new laptop for my daughter, for use at university. The sales people are really pushing paid-for anti virus software and rubbishing the free products. Are the commercial programs that much better than the free ones?

Rick Clark, by email

 

No, not when it comes to basic protection against viruses and most other types of malicious software and there is little to choose between most commercial applications and the best free security programs, and I include MSE and AVG in that category. In theory what you are paying for is fast and personal help and support. The free programs rely much more heavily on online help, FAQs and forums, all of which can be useful, but for some, being able to pick up the phone to speak to a human expert is a price worth paying, though, that’s also what dads are for…

 

 

Where’s My Spam?

I currently use Outlook Express for my day-to-day emails. When I'm away from home I log in via BTYahoo. In OE I do not have a spam folder but I do seem to have one in the BTYahoo set-up. I am wondering if I have a few thousand spams in OE that I don't know about. If so how do I acquire an OE spam folder?

Jim Moseley

 

Don’t worry, you haven’t missed any spam messages. Outlook Express is an ancient email program, from the days before spam was a problem. The only options for automatically deleting or diverting suspect emails into a nominated folder is to manually a ‘Rule’, or add the sender’s address to a blocked list. Neither method is very effective; the addresses nuisance emails originate from change constantly and spam merchants have devised numerous tricks to counter simple keyword filters. If you want to eradicate the spam that gets past your ISP’s filters, switch to a more sophisticated email program. Try Mozilla Thunderbird (http://goo.gl/glWnj); it is free and has a useful range of spam, junk mail and anti-phishing options that should help to keep your inbox clear.

 

 

Stitched Up

Using my Canon digital camera, I take macro shots of my textile work, download them into My Pictures and I can zoom in and look at stitches in clear detail.  However, when I email the pictures, I select for them to be sent in a smaller size so that they go quicker.  If I don't it can take ages for the email to go. When the recipient receives, opens and zooms in to view the details, they are fuzzy and almost look to be out of focus.  How can I email photos so that the image remains sharp when magnified?

Angela Teago, by email

 

Basically there are two ways to reduce the size of an image file for emailing; you can either make it smaller by decreasing the resolution, or increase the level of compression. Both methods result in a loss of detail but the former is far more damaging simply because the received image will contain fewer pixels. Compression works by reducing graduations in colour, brightness and contrast; fine detail only starts to suffer at higher compression levels. The Windows utility for emailing uses the resolution method and it is quite heavy handed so try manually compressing your image files. Most image editing programs have this facility but if yours doesn’t then look no further than the excellent freeware program PhotoFiltre (http://goo.gl/hkkFX). The compression option appears whenever you use SaveAs on the File menu. You will have to experiment, to get the best compromise between file size/upload time and loss of detail, so select a test image, start with a compression setting of 50 percent, say, and either mail it to yourself or ask your recipient how they got on with it.

 

 

Warning Signs

A small window appears on a regular basis in the bottom right hand corner of my screen with the message: High Performance Alert by Internet Explorer. It has appeared in the past when I am downloading Windows updates but more recently it appears when on Internet Explorer. I have Norton 360 installed and regularly go through the Tune Up functions and carry out scans to clear unnecessary files, etc.

Véronique Milot, by email

 

That message comes from Norton 360 and it is nothing to worry about. Browsers consume a lot of your PC’s processor and memory resources, and although you don’t have to do anything, if it starts happening with other programs then it is worth checking to see if your PC’s memory can be upgraded. If the PC is otherwise behaving itself you can disable or configure the alerts off by going to Settings > Detailed Settings > Administrative Settings > Performance Monitoring.

 

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© R. Maybury 2013 0610

 

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