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Distance a WiFi signal can travel 

by on April 28, 2010

Q: I have a computer with built in wireless but the closest WiFi hot spot is about 3 miles away. Is anyway to get the WiFi signal to travel 3 miles?

A: Technically it is possible to transmit a WiFi signal 3 miles because the record for the longest transmitted WiFi signal is 238 miles. In the real world a few hundred feet is much closer to the maximum that you will ever see and even then it is limited by any obstacles that are in the way. Maybe some day our WiFi equipment will get better but until then it will just be geeks with too much time on their hands sending WiFi signals long distances.

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Use a USB wireless adapter with your laptop 

by on April 27, 2010

Q: Is it possible to use a USB wireless adapter with my laptop that already has wireless built in?

A: Yes you can use a USB wireless adapter with a laptop that has wireless already built in. Some of the reasons you might do this would be that your internal wireless isn’t working anymore or maybe you need to connect to two networks at the same time. The setup is fairly easy on most computers but I do suggest reading the instructions. Sometimes you have to install a driver first and other times you can just connect the USB wireless adapter and it will just work.

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by on April 26, 2010

Q: What is logon.scr?

A: Logon.scr is the Logon Screen Saver that is shown before a user logs in. It can be disabled but to disable it requires you to modify your registry so we suggest you don’t do it. This means it is not a critical component of your Windows operating system but it doesn’t hurt anything when it runs so we suggest leaving it.

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The Blackberry 8830 cannot act as a WiFi hot spot 

by on April 25, 2010

Q: Is there anyway to connect my Blackberry 8830 to my IPod Touch and access the Internet?

A: Some phones have the ability to act as a WiFi hot spot. One example would be the Palm Pre on the Verizon network (I don’t believe it can on the Sprint network though). Unfortunately the Blackberry 8830 is not one of those phones. Down the road I hope we see a lot more phones that have this ability because as we get more and more devices it doesn’t seem right to have to keep paying for an Internet connection with each device.

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Figure out what battery and inverter you need 

by on April 24, 2010

Q: Is there an equation to determine what size and voltage a battery needs to be to power a 240V appliance via an inverter and how long it will last? For example a 24V battery inverted to 240V will power a 1000W appliance for 1 hr but a 1500W appliance for 15min.

A: We suggest you check out inverter battery sizing pdf over at batteryweb.com. It covers all the math you are looking for to figure out what battery and inverter combo you need to run your different appliances.

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Removing Windows 7 Ultimate Demo 

by on April 23, 2010

Q: How do I uninstall Windows 7 Ultimate Demo version?

A: When it comes to operating systems like Windows 7 Ultimate Demo there really is no such thing as uninstalling. You can upgrade an operating system from Windows Vista to Windows 7 but you cannot uninstall Windows 7 to go back to Windows Vista. So the only real solution is to reinstall whatever operating system it is that you want to run. This will remove Windows 7 Ultimate Demo and all your data so make sure you backup everything you need before doing this.

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You need MSXML 4.0 SP2 

by on April 22, 2010

Q: I am running Windows Vista. I want to clean out my system of items I don’t need and when I go to add/remove programs I see some items I don’t know anything about. Do I need these programs?

*MSXML 4.0 SP2 (KB927978) – Microsoft
*MSXML 4.0 SP2 (KB936181) – Microsoft
*MSXML 4.0 SP2 (KB941833) – Microsoft
*MSXML 4.0 SP2 (KB954430) – Microsoft
*MSXML 4.0 SP2 (KB973688) – Microsoft

A: Yes you need these. These are updates that Microsoft releases for their operating system and they are usually released to fix bugs or to fix security holes. The nice thing is anything released by Microsoft usually has a KB (knowledge base) number and that can be used to find out more information about the specific item. Read the rest of this entry »

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Correctly storing rechargable batteries for long periods of time 

by on April 21, 2010

Q: What is the best way to store a rechargeable battery for a long period of time?

A: This is a little tricky because all manufacturers have slightly different recommendations for what to do before you store a battery for a long period of time. Most NiMH and NiCD manufacturers suggest you fully charge your battery and then recharge every 3 to 9 months. I personally suggest you fully charge the battery and get on a 6 month schedule. L-ion batteries are a bit more complicated but it seems like most suggest you fully discharge the battery and store it in a cool place. I highly suggest you check with the manufacturer when it comes to L-ion batteries though. Read the rest of this entry »

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Protect your portable electronics 

by on April 20, 2010

Q: I have a suspicion that my laptop was stolen and switched with a broken model. Is there anyway for me to know if my laptop was switched?

A: The only true way to know if any electronic device is yours is by knowing the serial number. Every portable electronic has a unique serial number on it and you should make note of the serial number in case it is ever stolen. You can also put unique markings on the device as well, like your initials in a specific spot. I highly suggest you always take pictures of the initials and where you put them on the device in case it ever goes missing. Read the rest of this entry »

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Select what program should open a specific file type 

by on April 19, 2010

Q: I am running Windows XP and when I click on JPEG files they open in Microsoft Word. How do I get my files to open in a different program?

A:To make a file open in a different program than it normally does all you have to do is right click on the program and then select Open with…. From here you will be able to select the program you want the file to open with. If you want the program to always open with this specified program moving forward then you will want to check the box always open with this program.

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