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Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What Files Go With What Applications? Many PC users are confused by unfamiliar file types... gid, syd, and so on. How can you tell what they are, or what applications created them?
  2. How can I tell if my PC is year 2000 compliant?
  3. At certain times when I logon and start browsing the World Wide Web, I notice that some sites are faster than others. Why?
  4. What does URL 404 not found mean?
  5. What is a computer virus?
  6. What does downloading mean?
  7. How do I download a file?
  8. How do I install something I've downloaded?
  9. I use Eudora for my e-mail client. When someone sends me an e-mail attachment where does it go?
  10. I have a direct internet account with an ISP (Internet Service Provider) and am trying to send an EMAIL message to my friend on Compuserve, how should I address it?

Got a question not covered here... Ask Us!

   
What Files Go With What Applicaions? Many PC users are confused by unfamiliar file types... gid, syd, and so on. How can you tell what they are, or what applications created them?

The specialized search engine at http://kresch.com/exts/ext.htm contains information on over 1,500 file types. In seconds, you can (for example) discover that "gid" files are "Generated InDex" files created by WinHelp; or that "syd" files are backups created by Sysedit.Exe. There's even a BBS where you can ask questions about files not covered in the database. It's definitely worth a bookmark!

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How can I tell if my PC is year 2000 compliant?

Check out our Year 2000 Resource Center for details!

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At certain times when I logon and start browsing the World Wide Web, I notice that some sites are faster than others. Why?

There are numerous reasons for this. One is that the busiest times for the Internet are 7am-10am and 6pm-10pm. When more people get on and start looking at the popular sites, those sites have more request to fulfill and therefore respond slower. Another reason is that not all Web Sites connect to the Internet using the same type of connections. Some use low-speed dial-up connections, while others use moderate speed ISDN connections or High Speed T1 connections. As you might expect the slower the connection to the Internet the slower the response. Another reason that a site may 'seem' to come up faster is because you have visitied the site before and it is stored in your disk cache on your local computer. In this case the site information is loaded from your disk drive which is much faster than calling up information from across the Internet.

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What does URL 404 not found mean?

The URL 404 not found message can be caused by several things. The most common reasons are:

  • The server you are trying to reach is currently down. This may be due to website maintenance, a power outage or a computer failure on the host end, or a change in address of the website you are trying to reach.
  • You may have typed the URL (website address) incorrectly. Check your spelling and try again.

If you still can not reach the site try again later and you will most likely connect.

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What is a computer Virus?

Computer virus' are basically self replicating programs written by ill-intentioned programmers. They are most commonly transmitted from computer to computer by floppy disks, networks, e-mail and the internet. Some don't cause any real damage, but seem to merely be a test of the programmers replicating technique. Others can destroy the data on your computer systems hard drive causing the computer to malfunction in a variety of ways. There are virus scanners available that can prevent, detect and remove computer virus' . However, for reliable protection they must be updated regularly with the latest known virus signatures, because new virus' are created and released into the 'wild' every day. To learn more about computer virus' visit Symantec Corporation's Norton Antivirus website. The home of SARC, the Symantec Antivirus Research Center, this site provides an excellent resource for most any virus related questions!

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What does downloading mean?

Downloading means to transfer a file or program from a remote computer to your computer via your internet connection. You can download all kinds of things including programs, pictures and sound files. You should use caution however because you can also download virus'. A good virus scanner like the Norton Antivirus will solve that problem! For practice try downloading a trial version at:

http://www.symantec.com/nav/index_downloads.html

For tips on how to download a file read the next question!

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How do I download a file?

There are a number of scenarios that you may encounter when downloading files. Usually, when you download a file it will be compressed or zipped for faster and easier transfer from the host computer to your computer. Compressed and zipped files are simply a collection of files bundled into a single file. This single file is smaller in size than the sum of all the individual file sizes that it contains because it is compressed. This allows for faster transfer. Also, by combining several files into one, the programmer allows you to download only one file, rather than several, that can be uncompressed and extracted into the individual files that it contains when you receive it. Check out our Download Tutorial and try it for yourself!

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How do I install something I've downloaded?

Generally, there will be instructions on how to download and extract the contents of the file on the website where you got it from. Always follow those instructions if they are provided. If not, follow the instructions below to extract and install your new program.

If the download is a self extracting file (ie filename.exe):
Using Explorer locate the file you downloaded on your hard drive by clicking on the folders and navigating to the directory where you saved it. If you did not make a directory for the file when you downloaded it, do so now and move the downloaded file into it. The reason for this is, if you extract the file into a directory that already contains other files it can be difficult to determine which files where extracted from the new download. Double click on the filename to extract the contents of it. In the explorer window you should now see the original file plus all of the files that it contained, extracted into the same directory. If you don't see them click the VIEW menu, then click REFRESH in the Explorer window.

If the download is a ZIP file (ie filename.zip):
If you did not make a directory for the file when you downloaded it, do so now and move the downloaded file into it. The reason for this is, if you unzip the file into a directory that already contains other files it can be difficult to determine which files where extracted from the new download. Use
WinZip to open the archive and extract the contents. (If you are unfamiliar with WinZip see our download tutorial.) Start WinZip, open the .zip file you wish to unzip, read any readme files contained within, then click the extract button.

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I use Eudora for my e-mail client. When someone sends me an e-mail attachment where does it go?

On all systems setup by Martin Computing your e-mail attachments will go into the C:\EUDORA\ATTACH directory. If you want to be sure, run Eudora, click the Tools menu then select Options. In the category window click once on the Attachments icon. On the right hand side of that window read the path to the Attachment Directory.

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I have a direct internet account with an ISP (Internet Service Provider) and am trying to send an EMAIL message to my friend on Compuserve, how should I address it?

To send mail to someone on Compuserve you must use their user ID in the address, replacing the normal comma seperating the 5 digit number from the 4 digit number with a period. For example... if the persons Compuserve user ID is 74633,2301 their internet EMAIL address would be 74633.2301@compuserve.com

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This site last updated on April 14, 2002.