Ask Rick 318 19/07/14
Recently I opened Windows Live Mail to check my
messages and to my amazement my inbox indicated that I had received 393 emails
overnight! On closer examination, I
discovered that they were copies of all of the messages received over the past
year or so and which remained undeleted in my inbox. I would appreciate your
comments as to how this duplication might have arisen.
David I’Anson, by email
Only 393 emails in a year! I will not ask how
you manage to keep your inbox so trim, but message duplication happens lot and
will be familiar to many long-time uses of Microsoft email programs. It can
also happen if there is a glitch at your Internet provider, but it sounds as
though your problem is due to a relatively straightforward configuration issue.
I suspect that WLM has been set to store copies of downloaded messages on your
ISP’s mailsever. To disable it go to Accounts > Properties > Advanced tab
and uncheck ‘Leave a copy of message on server’ and click OK. Other reasons
this can happen include checking for messages too frequently; if so increasing
the interval to at least 15 minutes can help (WLM Menu > Options > Mail).
Security programs with an email scanning feature can also be responsible, check
what happens when the feature is switched off. If your email service has a
webmail facility (i.e. you can access your messages from the ISP’s website)
empty your webmail inbox, and if all else fails, delete your email account in
WLM then recreate it (stored messages
in your inbox will not be deleted).
When I started out on computers I used floppy
discs for my backups. I have now moved on to other devices. But when I tried to
check one of my old floppy discs recently a message popped up to say that
access to them had been deleted by Microsoft. How can I get over this problem?
Nevil Williams, by email
This has nothing to do with Microsoft and
3.5-inch floppy discs and even the long obsolete 5.25-inch type -- that really
were floppy -- can be read by all current Windows PCs, with the right hardware
and software. That error message points to a problem with corrupted data on the
disc or a fault with the drive or connecting cables. You can easily eliminate
the latter with an external floppy drive that plugs into a spare USB port.
These are widely available online for less than £10 (see Amazon, ebay etc). If
the discs are unreadable I am afraid that the prognosis is poor; floppies were
unreliable even when new, but you might be lucky and retrieve some files using
a data recovery tool like PC Inspector, free from http://goo.gl/6sdF8q.
Don’t Be Square
I have an Olympus Stylus u840 camera and I was
able to print direct to my old Cannon Pixma printer, which I have now replaced
with an HP Photosmart HP5524. I cannot connect the camera to the printer, as
the USB port will not accept the normal flat USB plug. Is there an adaptor and
if so, can I print straight from the camera?
Ted Robinson, by email
Most printers have a square or Type B USB
socket specifically to stop them being connected to anything other than PCs.
Adaptors are available but if you try to connect your camera to the printer you
risk damaging one or both devices, so please do not try it! There is another
way to transfer images to this printer without going through a PC, and it can
read memory cards but only SD types. Unfortunately your camera uses an XD card,
but there is a workaround. All you need is a Micro SD card (maximum 2Gb) and an
SD to XD card adaptor, also known as an MASD-1. These sell for under £5.00
online and you use it in exactly the same way as an XD card. When you want to
print from it take the card it out of the MASD-1 and pop it into an SD adaptor,
which is normally with micro SD cards.
With reference to your recent item about kerb
crawlers piggybacking BT Wi-Fi hotspots, we stay at another house from time to
time and would like to access the Internet and our emails. There is no
broadband connection but, presumably, since we are BT customers we could use
one of their Wi-Fi, Openzone or FON hotspots? Can you tell me which of these,
if any, is secure?
J.C by email
BT operated and affiliated public hotspots use
the same encryption systems as domestic wireless networks so in that regard
they are no safer and have the same vulnerabilities. On a more general note, no
wi-fi hotspot can be deemed entirely secure. One of the less well-publicised
threats is the so-called 'evil twin'. These are fake hotspots, designed to look
and behave like the real thing, and they allow the operator to harvest logon
information for secure websites and even hack into your computer without you
knowing anything about it. Public hotspots are fine for general web browsing --
finding out train times and so on -- but it would be unwise to use them for
sending or receiving personal or private information, and never use them for
any sort of financial transaction or indeed anything that involves divulging
passwords or PINs.
Both my wife and I have separate Gmail
accounts. When we travel we only take one laptop. When logging in to Gmail,
only my account comes up and it is impossible to delete my name and access my
wife's account. There must be a way?
Keith Atkinson, by email
Yes, and you can easily access multiple Gmail
accounts but you have to sign out of your account first. This option is on the
tiny drop-down menu, next to your email address in the top right hand corner of
your browser window. Click Sign Out, a blank logon box appears and your wife
can enter her details. It is a good idea to uncheck the ‘Stay signed in’ box on
a shared PC and this also stops Gmail from automatically logging in to your
account when it is opened.
© R. Maybury 2014 3006