Leo's Answers #125 – April 25, 2008

Leo's Answers
A Weekly Newsletter From
Ask Leo!
Leo Notenboom

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*** Contents

*** This Week's New Articles on Ask Leo!

What is Java?

Upon looking around on my PC at documents and programs that I apparently downloaded, one of the ways that popped up to surf the net is "Java Sun". I have no idea where that came from. I use explorer and Firefox. Is this "Java Sun" dangerous? Any idea how I got it on my PC?

One clarification, it's "Java", produced by a company by the name of "Sun" Microsystems.

It's not dangerous, in and of itself, but like any programming language or internet tool it can of course be used for good or evil.

Continue reading: "What is Java?"
http://ask-leo.com/what_is_java.html

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How do I delete the default screensavers in Windows XP?

I have Windows XP Professional. How do I delete screensavers? When I click on my desktop and properties and I go to my Wallpapers and Screensavers, there are a lot that I downloaded and would now like to delete, can I do that?

Yes you can. It's just a matter of knowing where Windows stores them.

Oh, and then perhaps beating Windows over the head a little as it tries to restore these "critical system files".

Continue reading: "How do I delete the default screensavers in Windows XP?"
http://ask-leo.com/how_do_i_delete_the_default_screensavers_in_windows_xp.html

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Can I find out where my email address has been used?

I want to find out what public sites my email address is attached to. Is there a website that I can go to, put my e-mail address in, and have it scan and tell me if my email address was used on sites like MySpace or anything else that I have signed up for?

The short answer is no, there is no place to find out where or what sites are using your e-mail address for registration.

However, there is at least one interesting thing you can do to find out how your e-mail address is being used.

Continue reading: "Can I find out where my email address has been used?"
http://ask-leo.com/can_i_find_out_where_my_email_address_has_been_used.html

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What are cabinet files?

In the "My Documents" folder I have many "cabinet" files. What are they? Do I need them? Can I just delete them?

Cabinet files are a lot like zip files. They contain other files in a compressed format.

Whether or not you can delete them depends on what they were for, which typically depends on what software you've installed.

There are a couple of ways of dealing with them.

Continue reading: "What are cabinet files?"
http://ask-leo.com/what_are_cabinet_files.html

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Where do you hang out?

Social Media sites are all the rage. I'm on a few, are you?

Continue reading: "Where do you hang out?" Article Includes Audio
http://ask-leo.com/where_do_you_hang_out.html

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What are XML documents?

Can you tell me what XML documents are? I have loads in my WINNT folder that seem to be connected to searches through google. Can I delete them?

Yes and no. I can tell you what XML documents are, but I can't tell you what those XML documents are.

But I do have some suggestions for cleaning things up.

Continue reading: "What are XML documents?"
http://ask-leo.com/what_are_xml_documents.html

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*** Featured Comments

A sampling of some of the comments that have been posted recently on Ask Leo!

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How do I delete my GMail account?

Dave writes:

Hi Leo -- just a quick question, not really related to the article ... just *how* do you do those wonderful "ripped-off" effects for your screenshots?!? :-)

Nitesh writes:

I strongly agree with Dave ... want to know what software or technique you use..to get such nice screen grab effects ...

I use a screen-capture product called "Snag It" which has those effects built in. http://www.techsmith.com/screen-capture.asp

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What's the difference between disk imaging and copying?

Steve writes:

I'd like to add another layer of distinction, for I get asked this question myself - but in my field, they're asking something (slightly) different although they don't always realize it. A "disk image" may be different from a "forensic disk image" due to the provable validity that the image or copy is identical to the original. Several computer forensic packages verify this by generating a hash value (or hash signature) for the original and for the copy, and then comparing the two. If they match, they're identical (well, the odds are better than a quadrillion to one that they're identical). A hash is a number calculated form string of text - in this case, the string of text is every consecutive sector on the hard disk. If it is if value to your readers, we've put up a glossary of such terms here: http://www.burgessforensics.com/glossary.php

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It's all about support

S.E. writes:

You are totally right "It's all about support". I purchased a dell desktop computer and originally I had 90 days warranty, but I paid for one year extra in case if something happen and guess what, motherboard died after 100 days. I called the customer service and they came and replaced it for free. They were very nice and quick about helping me.

*** This Week's Most Popular

The ten most popular articles in the last 7 days on Ask Leo!

  1. How do I put a picture in a comment on myspace.com?
  2. How do I make a new MSN Hotmail account?
  3. Why is my Task Manager disabled, and how do I fix it?
  4. How do I delete history items from my Google tool bar?
  5. Svchost and Svchost.exe - Crashs, CPU maximization, viruses, exploits and more.
  6. What are MSN HotMail's POP3 and SMTP settings for Outlook Express?
  7. What are the POP3 and SMTP settings for Hotmail?
  8. How do I change my MSN Hotmail password?
  9. How do I hack into someone's account?
  10. My desktop Recycle Bin has disappeared - why, and how do I get it back?

*** Popular Articles from the Archives

If you travel much, particularly with sensitive data, this article might be of interest ...

How can I keep data on my laptop secure?

I travel a lot, and have sensitive data on the laptop I take with me that I need as part of my job. But I'm in fear of losing the laptop and that this data will fall into the wrong hands. What do you suggest?

I know how you feel. I, too, have sensitive information on my laptop that I would prefer not to fall into the wrong hands. I can handle losing the laptop, but the thinking about the data in the wrong hands ... well, it just gives me the willies.

So, yes, I do have a solution, and it turns out to be fairly easy, secure, and free.

Continue reading...
How can I keep data on my laptop secure?
http://ask-leo.com/how_can_i_keep_data_on_my_laptop_secure.html

*** Thoughts and Comments

Changes, they are a' coming...

Last week while I was in San Antonio I was chatting with a good friend of mine, Tim Carter. He's the man behind AskTheBuilder.com - and yes, in case you're wondering, I've taken much inspiration from Tim over the years. We were chatting about comments on our respective sites. Tim's only recently enabled comments (yes, he takes occasional inspiration from me as well Smile), and we were both noting the value that some comments really bring to our readers.

It dawned on me that a lot of comments don't get the exposure that they deserve. As a result this week you'll see a new section in the newsletter: "Featured Comments", which will contain a sampling of recent comments posted to articles on Ask Leo! and my reply if applicable.

There are additional changes in the works as well.

In two weeks I'm going to start publishing this newsletter on Tuesday mornings instead of Friday nights. I realized that while Friday night was fairly convenient for me, it was a tad odd for a tech newsletter, and likely wasn't the most useful for you. Hopefully Tuesday (after the Monday rush) and morning (after that first cup of coffee Smile) will make for a slightly more convenient time. Next week's issue will be on Friday the 2nd, but the next will be a tad over a week later on Tuesday the 13th.

Finally, I'm considering whether or not to continue my weekly podcast. My sense is that folks are getting the most value out of the written transcript, so I might discontinue the audio format. The podcast tends to be more of an opinion piece, so I may just replace it with exactly that: a weekly written commentary.

I have a few more ideas percolating as well, but as always, if you have comments or suggestions, I'd love to hear about them. Just drop me a line using the "ask a question" form: http://ask-leo.com/ask. Thanks!

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As always, if you appreciate this newsletter or the site, one of the best ways you can say "Thank You!" is to link to Ask Leo! or simply to tell a friend or colleague. Just send folks to askleo.net.

'till next time...

Leo

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Some of Leo's other sites: The Ask Leo! Store, Leo's Online Business Card, Forwarded Funnies, Taming Email, MovableType Tips, Leo's Blog, Buy Leo a Latte (or a Beer), A Letter To Myself, Dolls and Friends, Corgwn.com

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