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Tech: Dim fonts

kendall 09 Dec 06 - 01:08 PM
Big Mick 09 Dec 06 - 01:11 PM
DMcG 09 Dec 06 - 01:13 PM
bobad 09 Dec 06 - 01:15 PM
kendall 09 Dec 06 - 01:15 PM
Desert Dancer 09 Dec 06 - 01:36 PM
kendall 09 Dec 06 - 01:39 PM
kendall 09 Dec 06 - 01:48 PM
JohnInKansas 09 Dec 06 - 02:40 PM
JohnInKansas 09 Dec 06 - 02:48 PM
kendall 09 Dec 06 - 04:48 PM
Greg F. 09 Dec 06 - 05:02 PM
JohnInKansas 09 Dec 06 - 05:57 PM
Bee 09 Dec 06 - 07:23 PM
Cluin 09 Dec 06 - 07:39 PM
kendall 09 Dec 06 - 07:50 PM
Cluin 09 Dec 06 - 07:56 PM
JohnInKansas 10 Dec 06 - 06:37 AM
kendall 10 Dec 06 - 08:43 AM
JohnInKansas 10 Dec 06 - 04:28 PM
Bee 10 Dec 06 - 04:53 PM
kendall 10 Dec 06 - 05:20 PM
Cluin 10 Dec 06 - 05:57 PM
Bernard 10 Dec 06 - 06:00 PM
Cluin 10 Dec 06 - 06:03 PM
JohnInKansas 10 Dec 06 - 06:13 PM
Cluin 10 Dec 06 - 06:22 PM
Cluin 10 Dec 06 - 06:28 PM
JohnInKansas 10 Dec 06 - 06:36 PM
Cluin 10 Dec 06 - 06:40 PM
JohnInKansas 10 Dec 06 - 07:05 PM
Cluin 10 Dec 06 - 07:13 PM
SussexCarole 10 Dec 06 - 07:21 PM
kendall 10 Dec 06 - 08:36 PM
JohnInKansas 10 Dec 06 - 09:13 PM
Rowan 10 Dec 06 - 10:25 PM
JohnInKansas 11 Dec 06 - 02:09 AM
kendall 11 Dec 06 - 08:11 AM
JohnInKansas 11 Dec 06 - 08:28 AM
Acme 11 Dec 06 - 09:44 AM
JohnInKansas 11 Dec 06 - 09:54 AM
GUEST,nickp (cookieless at work) 11 Dec 06 - 11:11 AM
JohnInKansas 11 Dec 06 - 12:11 PM
GUEST,*Ahem* 11 Dec 06 - 12:19 PM
Bernard 11 Dec 06 - 01:27 PM
nickp 11 Dec 06 - 02:08 PM
Cluin 11 Dec 06 - 02:55 PM
Bernard 11 Dec 06 - 03:03 PM
s&r 12 Dec 06 - 07:01 PM
Cluin 12 Dec 06 - 07:04 PM
bobad 12 Dec 06 - 07:15 PM
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Subject: Tech: Dim fonts
From: kendall
Date: 09 Dec 06 - 01:08 PM

I have a problem with fonts.
Ever since I updated as suggested, the lettering is small, dim and fuzzy. Can't seems to figure it out. Any suggestions?


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: Big Mick
Date: 09 Dec 06 - 01:11 PM

Updated what, Captain? Windows IE?

Mick


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: DMcG
Date: 09 Dec 06 - 01:13 PM

I don't know what you have updated, but if it is to Windows XP, here's a clipping from the 'help'


To use ClearType for screen fonts
Open Display in Control Panel.
On the Appearance tab, click Effects.
In the Effects dialog box, select the Use the following method to smooth edges of screen fonts check box.
Click ClearType in the list.
Notes

To open Display, click Start, click Control Panel, and then double-click Display.
ClearType is ideal for portable computer and other flat screen monitors. ClearType may appear slightly blurry on desktop computer monitors.
Whether you select Standard or ClearType from the list, you must have a video card and monitor that support a color setting of at least 256 colors. Best results are achieved with High color (24-bit) or Highest color (32-bit) support. Click the Settings tab to set Color quality.

On the other hand, if you updated Internet Explorer to version 7, you may want to select a better font via Tools/Internet/Fonts and you may have to try a few to find one you like.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: bobad
Date: 09 Dec 06 - 01:15 PM

You can try setting to clear type by rt. clicking on desktop then select properties/appearance/effects and enable clear type in the second drop down menu.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: kendall
Date: 09 Dec 06 - 01:15 PM

IE 7
Thanks, I'll try that.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 09 Dec 06 - 01:36 PM

And not necessarily applicable in this case, but always worth mentioning: among your browser's "View" options is the option of increasing the text size. (I find many web designers idea of beauty involves excessively small type. Don't know what to do about the ones who have something against contrast and make their type gray on a pastel background.)

~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: kendall
Date: 09 Dec 06 - 01:39 PM

With the update the "view" button is missing and the toolbar is all different. Why the hell can't they just leave things alone?


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: kendall
Date: 09 Dec 06 - 01:48 PM

I found the box for text size and it says "Fixed" all other options are grayed out. How do I regain control?


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 09 Dec 06 - 02:40 PM

Do I sense a growning mobgroup mildly underwhelmed by IE7?

With a new installation of IE7 you may have to select other than the default toolbar to have a chance of finding the functions you're used to adjusting. If the "File, Edit, View, Favorites, Tools, Help" line doesn't appear at the top, try Alt-F, Alt-V, or any of the shortcuts for one of the somethings on the Menu bar. That should "reveal" the menu bar so you can click "View," select "Toolbars," and put a check by "Menu Bar."

The check by "Menu Bar" on the View|Toolbars dropdown should make the old line show up at least, which will give you a familiar place to find stuff until you figure out where else they've scattered things.

Once you show the Menu bar you can get to the text size setting at View on that toolbar. One of the "new places" for text size is at the "Page" icon at the upper right.

On the lower bar of the stuff at the top, the larger (yellow-orange with default setup?) STAR icon is the "Favorites," and the smaller STAR with Plus sign is the "Add to Favorites." You have to click the big star, then on the drop-down click on History to get the rolldown of where you've been, instead of just clicking at the right of the "Back" button to get to it. There actually are three or four other ways of seeing "History" lists, but they're subtly different in useless ways. I can't find a purpose that all the different options serve, except that they placated some programmer who didn't know how the other programmers were doing things, so to placate them all they put in all their stuff.

All icons are "fuzzied" because it's more artistic, and we all know that "pretty" and "cute" outrank useful. Live with it (that's essentially the advice I got from Microsoft).

Almost all useful commands are disguised in either the Settings, Page, or Tools icons that probably appear at the upper right. Note that there's also a double-chevron (>>) over at the right where they've also put a "Help" button.

Everything that you used to be able to get to easily is HIDDEN in scattered obscure places, "because it's sexy" in the imaginings of the new programmers they stole from Apple. Since "you don't really need the Menu bar," that's why it's turned off by default. You should have known stuff was where it was relocated, because anything the programmers who mangled it know should be obvious, of course. It's stupid of you to think that things should be where you expect to find them, because the programmers know that all users are 13 year old kids who like surprises.

The familiar(?) Internet Options group of stuff should show on a drop-down if you click the "Tools," which I believe they intended to resemble a "gear wheel" but which looks more like a small cocklebur since they made all the icons indistinguishable "pastel" colors with "soft edges" on purpose.

IE7 does seem perhaps a little more "stable" than previous versions, although at present it's not significantly more so in very obvious ways.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 09 Dec 06 - 02:48 PM

Kendall -

The only reason I can think of for getting the "fixed" text size is that you may have turned on "accessibility options."

At Tools|Internet Options, down at the bottom, theres an "Appearance Group," with an "Accessibility" button at the right. If you've set things there to "ignore webpage settings" the text size settings elsewhere may be locked out.

No guarantee, but that's where some other (sensible) programs have produced that result.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: kendall
Date: 09 Dec 06 - 04:48 PM

John that did the trick, the text is now back at its former size. Thanks. Now if I could get rid of that damned fuzzy look.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: Greg F.
Date: 09 Dec 06 - 05:02 PM

You can, Kendall- get Mozilla.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 09 Dec 06 - 05:57 PM

Kendall -

You've found the settings in IE7 for text size, and I presume you've looked at settings for text and icon sizes at Start|Settings|Control Panel, Display.

An additional setting that sometimes helps is in the Display set, on the "Appearance" tab, where there should be two buttons marked "Effects" and "Advanced."

I'm not optimistic about how much you can accomplish there, but sometimes it's possible to get things a little "different" looking, and you might be able to get it so you like it better than what you've got. I don't know any way to recommend what will work, other than trial and error. On some machines the options there don't seem to change much of anything, but on others they can make some visible difference.

Also at Control Panel, Display, on the Settings Tab, at the "Advanced" button, there's an adjustment for "DPI" that may help. A higher setting "compensates" somewhat for a high screen resolution that makes icons and such too small to read. The settings offered are determined by how Windows identifies your monitor, so there should be only one or to choices; but there's a "Custom" setting too where you can punch in odd settings. On CRT monitors usually the choices offered are about the only ones that work. I don't know how strictly that's true if you have one of the newer flat panel displays.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: Bee
Date: 09 Dec 06 - 07:23 PM

I hope Kendall won't mind if I throw another tech question into this thread. A friend's desktop (windows XP, I think) has been 'locked' by someone more 'techy' than he (and unavailable to restore it). When you rightclick on the desktop, or open the display controls, all options for changing the desktop (using wallpaper, using themes, browse, customise, tile, etc.) are greyed out.

The reason given for doing this was 'waste of memory', which is silly - it's a forty gig computer with not much more than Windows on it. Any suggestions? I looked everywhere I could think of for an option to restore the functions, but no luck.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: Cluin
Date: 09 Dec 06 - 07:39 PM

Forty gig computer? Are you talking about the size of the hard drive? That's not the memory. How much RAM does it have. Windows XP (SP2) needs at least 256 Megs RAM to run efficiently and more than that is recommended.

Did you try clicking on the "Customize Desktop" button under the Desktop Tab of the Display Props box? Then select the "Web" tab and take the checkmark out of the box beside "Lock Desktop Items". See if that helps.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: kendall
Date: 09 Dec 06 - 07:50 PM

I know just enough to get into trouble, so guess I'll live with what I've done. Thanks a lot for all the help folks.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: Cluin
Date: 09 Dec 06 - 07:56 PM

Is this "fuzzy" look just in your web browser or also on your desktop and other applications as well, kendall?


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 06:37 AM

Cluin -

256 MB RAM is what Microsoft says is the minimum required to run Windows XP. If you want to run a program in Windows that's pretty marginal.

512 MB for WinXP is the concensus "minimum acceptable" for programs in WinXP to "limp rapidly." A few people still sell machines at that level, and lots of folk get along ok with them, but I wouldn't buy a used WinXP doorstop with less than 1GB RAM.

A machine with 40GB HD is likely dated to WinME or possible Win2K at time of manufacturer, and it may really lack the RAM for useful performance with WinXP.

For the new Vista, recommendations are generally that you get at least 4GB RAM if you're a moderately "heavy user."

For Bee:

For most users, there is NO WAY to extract a password from WinXP, and for the most part that applies to recent earlier versions. The encryption isn' incredibly good, but is quite strong enough to be unrecoverable by "ordinary means."

The usual way of "unlocking" a password locked machine is to dump the BIOS cache where the password is stored. This requires (usually) shutting down the machine, opening it up, and short-circuiting the appropriate pins on the BIOS chip to discharge the chip memory, which is the usual place where at least the Admin level passwords are stored.

Having the password in BIOS allows you to mirror the system to a new hard drive without reprogramming all the access stuff, and prevents someone from redirecting to their own substitute drive to get into yours.

In many cases it's necessary to remove the internal battery first, which may be soldered in place in many recent machines.

Shorting the wrong terminals, or omitting necessary preparatory steps before doing it, is likely to completely "fry" both the BIOS chip and other closely connected parts of the motherboard. Some computer builders include a pair of "terminals" on the motherboard specifically for this purpose, in which case a bent paper clip is the only tool required once you've run through the preparatory steps.

(If the computer had the present Windows installed by the builder, replacement of the motherboard, or BIOS chip, by anyone other than the original machine manufacturer may void your license to use your copy of Windows.)

You need EXACT INSTRUCTIONS from the ORIGINAL MAKER of the computer before any attempt to reset things. If you can't find the User Manual that came with the computer, or get one from the manufacturer, a capable (a little more than just competent) service person might be able to reconstruct which methods yours requires with information from the motherboard supplier.

Depending on the BIOS and associated chip set used, sometimes it's possible to dump only the memory for the passwords, but in other situations reprogramming the BIOS after the dump may be required, In any case you will need a verified emergency boot disk to get you back to where you can restore BIOS settings before even considering an attempted dump.

Theoretically one can just remove the battery and leave the computer disconnected until the CMOS memory discharges, but that's usually about a 2+ YEAR wait with modern chips.

If you know a friendly 13 year old "hacker" who's recently accessed the Defense Department secure network without getting caught, he might have a "cracking" program that would have a chance of eventually getting into your computer, but you'd likely be arrested long before you found a program of this kind by searching for one on the internet.

Best advice is live with what you've got, or find the person who sold it to you and get a password out of him. (Take a large ugly friend to the interview?) IFF YOU HAVE the user's manual that came with the machine, it should give instructions, and they should be simple (but tedious) to follow.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: kendall
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 08:43 AM

When I type a message here it is all fuzzy, but when it appears on my screen as a finished post it is clear.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 04:28 PM

At Tools|Internet Options, there should be a tab called "Programs."

There's an entry there for "HTML Editor." The program you put in there may affect appearance during your prep of a post, and not affect what comes back at you, through your browser, from the web? (Note that I don't know this to be true but it's a SWAG at a possibility.)

A usual program for that box is Microsoft Word - of course that assumes you have Word on your machine. Word should be able to use any fonts on your machine, but some other program might not be finding all of them?

A quick check on this post shows my "composing" box using Times New Roman, which is my default "Normal" font in Word, and it doesn't change if I go to IE Tools|Internet Options, and reset the IE font to something different - but the rest of the page does change. This implies that the post, when it comes back as part of the thread, uses the font I set in IE, but in the "typing box" the font selection comes from somewhere else, and I'll assume for now it's my Word setting that controls the input box. (????)

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: Bee
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 04:53 PM

Thanks, John in Kansas. I'm giggling here - I think my friend will have to live with it, the lock-out was initiated by a 16 year old foriegn student living in his household at the time and using that computer for online games. I had hoped it wasn't password related, but some Windows option that I'm unaware of.

Cluin: had already been where you suggest, but thanks.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: kendall
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 05:20 PM

I wish I had known what was going to happen if I downloaded that update. I don't like what I got one bit! All my favorites are hidden and everything looks so different.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: Cluin
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 05:57 PM

Your Favorites should be accessible through the little yellow star icon on the upper left of the altered toolbar, kendall. If you want `em to stay on the screen (and take up page display space) like they were in IE6, just click on the "Pin the Favorites Center" icon in the upper right of the Favorites window.

JiK, when I was doing phone tech support for Dell earlier this year, I encountered quite a few people running WinXp with 128 megs RAM. It ran, but fairly slowly. Many people would call in figuring they had a virus or spyware slowing things up (which they often did), but a quick check revealed the main problem... not enough RAM.

"I can clean your computer up pretty easily and quickly," I tell them, "but you'll need to purchase more RAM to see an appreciable operational speed difference. I bet things really slowed down after you got online and updated Windows, right?"

"I don't know... I guess so... my damn kid..."

"Wait a minute, I see you are running Service Pack 2... (we had a great application to allow us to connect right up to customer's computer and see it as if we were sitting right there in front of their monitor and even take control with the customer's okay) and your Automatic Updates is set to Auto so it probably happened without you even knowing it."

"Oh. Well, why would Dell sell me a computer that doesn't have enough memory to run Windows?"

"Your computer is a few years old. Back when WinXP first came out, 128 megs of RAM was the recommended minimum, which is what you have. You could have upgraded the RAM when you bought it for a bit more money, or at any time since, but now the latest version of Windows XP needs more RAM to run properly. I know they don't tell you that before you update, but there it is. I recommend you purchase more RAM."

"Can Dell sell me more RAM?"

"Yeah, but shop around, I'd say." (if Dell is monitoring my call, I'm screwed, but I don't care).

And, by the way, I'm running the latest version of Windows with 768 megs of RAM any it runs pretty quickly, even doing video work and graphics (but then I have a high-end graphics card with lots of video mem). I was getting by with 512 megs till this summer when I bought another 2 128 meg modules of RAMBUS memory from a guy I met at work with the same model computer who was upgrading his RAM finally and sold me his old memory for a song.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: Bernard
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 06:00 PM

Kendall - you can uninstall IE7 and revert to IE6.

Control Panel - add/remove programs...

Things will go back to how they were.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: Cluin
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 06:03 PM

And kendall, when you enter text in the box to post to a thread, it should be appearing in a monospaced font like Courier. The browser will display the threads accepted posts in your regular webpage display font. Those settings will be under Internet Options, accessed either through the Tools button on the top right of thr browser or through Control Panel.

Under the "General" tab, click the "Fonts" button near the bottom. Under the "Plain text font" category, make sure "Courier" or "Courier New" is selected for display. See if that helps. You can experiment with other fonts to see which you prefer, but generally you'll want a monospaced font selected here.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 06:13 PM

kendall -

All your favorites should have come across with the update, but they're now at the "star" at the upper left. The "star plus" is the "Add to Favorites." The only thing missing is the "Manage Favorites," so one must assume they expect you to just drag to manage. Doing it all by dragging things in the old (IE6) was a little quirky, and I haven't had a need to look at whether that's been improved.

I DON'T LIKE that the "Add to Favorites" opens with everything expanded, so I have to scroll through 10 "screens" on the list to put an addition in a folder at the bottom of the list, but the basic Favorites (the Star) isn't too difficult to navigate. It expands and contracts subtrees just by clicking. It seems to me rather stupid that it gives the same little arrow for a folder that expands when you click as for a link that opens when you click, but there are other clues I can probably learn to use ... ... maybe.

If you add the "Menu Bar" [Click "Tools" at the top right, and click "Menu bar" - should turn it on] you can still find most of the things you're used to at the File/Edit/View/Favorites/Tools/Help entries.

Lots of things are moved around, in ways I find rather "illogical," and there's a lot of duplications with the same thing appearing at three or four different icons. Buttons for Instant Messaging, RSS feeds, and for "immediate contact with your DRM Gestapo" - things I don't use and don't want to, are somewhat intrusive. It's possible I can eventually figure out how to tailor the display to get rid of some of that trash, or not, but it's going to take a while to sort it all out. I've only had IE7 for a couple of weeks, but I'm not really being much impressed with the visible "improvements."

They are claiming some internal workings to improve safety and stability; but it's really difficult to see those things. It does add labelled controls for the "Popup Blocker," "Phishing Filter," and "Add-ons Management" where they're "two-clicks" to get to instead of having to burrow through the menus.

I'm sort of waiting for the reviewers who have the horsepower to look at the innards to get over raving about the "Tabs" and start putting out some real reviews on how (whether) it really works better.

Incidentally, thanks for the comment about looking different in input than when posted. I'd never noticed that IE controls fonts on the page, but the HTML Editor setting lets Word (in my case) control the fonts in the input box. It wasn't ever too visible, since I generally use Times family fonts pretty much everywhere.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: Cluin
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 06:22 PM

In my IE7, clicking on the "Add to Favorites" button results in a drop-down menu with "Organize Favorites" as an item. Brings up a fairly clean and nice interface to manage my favourites folder. And nothing is expanded by default there.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: Cluin
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 06:28 PM

I like the quick "customize" feature. I removed the Messenger icon from the toolbar because I never use it. You can add an icon there to chage text size easily, but I have my scroll wheel on my mouse for that. (hold down CTRL and work the wheel... WORK it!)


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 06:36 PM

Cluin - you're right about the organize. Another example of random moving of things around so that I missed it.

Re adding RAM: With Win95 and to a lesser extent with Win98, adding too much RAM could slow a machine down almost as much as having too little. The machine has to keep track of where things are in RAM, and if you had a lot of RAM the files to keep track of where stuff was got bigger than the stuff it was tracking - resulting in "page fatigue" that shut everything down to a crawl.

A problem that crops up more and more often with upgrades, is that most BIOS chips/motherboard combinations have a "maximum addressable" limit, that may not let one put enough RAM in an old machine to be able to run the next version effectively. You can't always assume you can just plug in another chip. That's one of the reasons it's worth keeping the User Manual.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: Cluin
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 06:40 PM

I think it's just a matter of getting used to the new look and where things are. I didn't like it at first and thought I'd have no use for tabbed browsing, but I'm coming around to it.

Of course the same thing was true of using computers in general several years ago.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 07:05 PM

Cluin -

My look at IE7 is partly because Microsoft has said it wouldn't come out until Vista. They have said that their decision to release IE7 a little early was so that "people can 'get used to' the Vista look."

Although I don't expect to get Vista for some time, I'm looking at IE7 with a eye toward what's to come. My concern isn't that they've put things in different places and made them look a bit different; but with whether the new way does anything the old way couldn't, or does anything in a way that's easier, simpler, or clearer to the user. Thus far I'm seeing little real "improvement," except possibly for the kids downloading music and/or sending lots of instant messaging traffic.

With DRM management, and Sony in particular, being the most prolific source of malware out there, I don't do much "music buying." The kids who are doing all the instant messaging (and buying most of the "music") should be kept in a cage until their homework is finished, and let out only to do their chores (IMO). If they're not tired enough to go to bed when the chores are done, they need more to do.

Unfortunately, lots of those kids are corporate executives, or managing editors, so my opinions don't carry much weight, I suppose.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: Cluin
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 07:13 PM

But what the hell is this "Feeds" icon supposed to do?


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: SussexCarole
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 07:21 PM

Dim = No... here in Wales

Dim Parcio - Dim Stoppio...oh yes I am learning the language quickly especially with the help of parking tickets!.....Now Dim Chipio...that's a different story

So... Dim Fontio..leaves a lot to the imagination!


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: kendall
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 08:36 PM

I dumped that update, everything is back to normal. Thanks for the good advice.
If I had my way I'd still have windows 98!


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 09:13 PM

Cluin -

"Feeds" refers to "RSS Feeds." You sign up for one, and whenever some nutcase decides he/she has something "you really need to know" it's sent automatically to you. It's been there in older versions, but you had to actually want to ask for one. They moved it out to where it's really prominent now, because they just know you'll die if someone doesn't send you some bit of blather (mostly adverts) every few moments.

It does sometimes serve a useful purpose, but it's easy - so I hear - to get "connected" to so many places you don't have time to do much else. Sort of like promising to look at all of the SPAM you get.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: Rowan
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 10:25 PM

Reading these posts reminds me of all those young blokes spending all their spare moments taking their cars apart, adjusting some extraordinarily arcane bit and then putting it all back together for a burn 'round the block. And then doing it all again. You're all wonderfully dextrous (and friends regard me as a MacVolvo driver) but I tried to leave all this stuff behind me when I got out of writing Fortran and (later) fiddling with CP/M. And yes, I did notice a recent reference on another thread to CP/M by John and Jon. The nostalgia almost made me weep. I'm not criticising, but marvelling. And I know where to come for such info when I need it!

John
In a much earlier post in this thread above you differentiated between CRT screens and flat screens. When I made the same differentiation to my local IT techie just before the weekend he upbraided me and said that several people who ordered a "flat screen" were most dienchanted to find they had a thumping great (but "flat") CRT screen, instead of the desired LCD screen.

I thought you'd be one to appreciate such distinctions.

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 11 Dec 06 - 02:09 AM

Rowan -

Your friend was just trying to "one-up" you. There have been a number of CRTs advertised as "flat screen CRT" models, and they're still around; but in casual conversation today "flat screen," or "flat panel," or "flat monitor," without additional qualification, is used by virtually all sellers and most shoppers to mean "anything NOT a CRT." That actually includes about four different kinds of monitors, but generally is taken to mean either a plasma or liquid crystal pixel display. (And most don't refer to a liquid crystal pixel display as an "LCD," since that too commonly refers to something like you'd see on a calculator, not a monitor. Both LQ and LX are used, but neither is really "standard.")

Now I can see someone ordering a "flat monitor" and getting a TV display instead of a computer display, maybe even on purpose.

It does depend on where one shops, of course, and in what language. All one really has to do usually is check the shipping weight, but anyone who'd pay the price without at least looking at the picture probably deserves what comes in the box.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: kendall
Date: 11 Dec 06 - 08:11 AM

The depth of knowledge in the mudcat continues to impress me. How do you keep up with this stuff?


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 11 Dec 06 - 08:28 AM

kendall -

In part it's a matter of being old enough to remember a lot.

Then you get to the point where you remember things you never even knew.

After that, we just make up stuff.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: Acme
Date: 11 Dec 06 - 09:44 AM

I have a "flat screen" CRT that I finally moved out to the garage a couple of months ago. It had fantastic high resolution, but it was huge and weighed a ton. I watched for a sale on a flat panel LCD screen and moved that one in to replace it.

Last week my computer download something big and when the little balloon popped up to say "updates ready to install" I clicked custom installation then deselected IE 7 and closed it out. I have the darned thing on my computer at work and it does look odd and it is missing functionality until I have time to go in and wade around in the menus to restore stuff I need and get rid of stuff I don't want. It was sneaky and not very nice of Microsoft to set this to "automatically update" in computers instead of making it a task one had to do by hand. I have known since it came out that it can be rolled back, and I may do that on my office computer.

SRS


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 11 Dec 06 - 09:54 AM

SRS -

I didn't get it as an automatic update. One of the automatics didn't finish, so when I opened IE it diverted me to the update site. I ran the quick install, and it didn't find anything critical, so I went back and ran the custom to see if there was anything non-critical I wanted.

Completely my fault, but I didn't pay attention and let IE7 download as an "optional" update, mixed in with a half-dozen other things.

I think it may be possible to get attached to it, but at the moment it's a little like a stray dog that you let in the house - that pees on the carpet every once in a while.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: GUEST,nickp (cookieless at work)
Date: 11 Dec 06 - 11:11 AM

Well, a bit of a thread creep...

In my Windows directory I have large numbers of files called (for example) $NtUninstallKB837001$ which take up space and I'd quite like to get rid of. I'm guessing that they are to do with the auto(or otherwise) updating. I'm also guessing that I can get rid of them.... or are they a) for rolling back (far too long ago to do that) or b) controlling what Windows think I really really want... or is that info in the registry. Anyway, experts, can they go?

Slightly more back on track, I downloaded IE7 and well, grudgingly, it's OK but seems a bit sluggish. Not quite so bad after I turned off the Phishing check but still not brilliant. I've also indulged in Firefox since then (this is only the last couple of weeks) and it seems to do the business. It has odd rare moments when it goes unstable but I'm happy enough. The only thing I find irritating is the pop-up list of saved items that comes up if I save a picture or something. Anyone know if that can be turned off?

Nick


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 11 Dec 06 - 12:11 PM

$NtUninstallKB837001$ is the uninstall file for the update described in Knowledge Base (KB) article number 837001.

You can go to Microsoft Search and poke in KB 837001 if you'd like to see which patch it came with. The search result should include that article, and every other article that mentions it.

I'm not sure how one would say that they take up space as Windows Explorer should show no file size for them, since they're folders, and you shouldn't be able (easily) to look inside them. If you right-click on one, and select "Properties" you'll find that on the General tab they look pretty normal, but on the Sharing tab it should say "all options are disabled on this tab as this file is used by the operating system."

The odd color in the Explorer listing is another clue, and that the attibutes on all these folders are "Hidden" and "System."

I would recommend that you NOT ATTEMPT TO DELETE THEM. (And I doubt that Windows will let you, unless you resort to "advanced techniques.", one of these advanced techniques being to ignore the warning that "you're about to do something *stupid.")

* That's a paraphrase of what it actually says, and doesn't mean necessarily that what you're about to do really is stupid. Sometimes you do have to ignore a warning. But I don't think this is one of the times I'd advise it.

At most, an uninstall file is a text list of changes made when something was installed, including a list of all files copied to the drive and all entries made/removed in the Registry. Although there are about 140 of the folders if you're up to date in WinXP, they shouldn't be using more than one cluster per file, and most of these contain 3 or 4 files; so unless you've got an enormous Hard drive with very large clusters that's a TOTAL of around 1 MB for all of them.

In this case, this list of folders also is, I believe, what the update site looks at to see what patches you have installed, in order to recommend what new patches you need.

If those files really bug you, you can click on Tools in Windows Explorer, click Folder Options, select the View tab, and uncheck the "show hidden and system files" button and they'll go away.

The default setup, and Microsoft's recommendation, is that you DO NOT view hidden and system files, since they think it may confuse you. I leave it turned on only because in very rare cases it might show a "suspicious" file that could be associated with a virus; but that does little good unless you have some idea of what's suspicious. More important for that purpose is that you DO NOT TURN ON the "Hide File Extensions," since a double extension is a frequently used way of disguising buggy files (file.bmp.exe would look like a .bmp bitmap with extensions turned off, but could actually be an executable .exe that would bite you.)

In general, there's little reason even to be looking in the Windows folder where these files/folders are located, since everything that's in there should be added, deleted and otherwise "managed" through the Control Panel.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: GUEST,*Ahem*
Date: 11 Dec 06 - 12:19 PM

Dim fonts, thick smoke, and old folk music
Is the only kind of life
I'll ever understand


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: Bernard
Date: 11 Dec 06 - 01:27 PM

These folders are merely to allow you to reverse (uninstall) an update, and it is safe to remove them if the system is behaving.

I tend to switch the 'Date modified' folder view to 'most recent first', and delete any that are more than a month old.

They are usually around 1 - 2 Mb in size, and are usually compressed (that's why they show blue in the folder list).

However, as JiK says, if you are in any way uncertain, Micro$oft make them hidden by default to deter the unwary - so leave them alone! They don't take up much space, after all.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: nickp
Date: 11 Dec 06 - 02:08 PM

Thanks, I'll leave them alone!!!!

Nick


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: Cluin
Date: 11 Dec 06 - 02:55 PM

Wimdows is getting like our cars... impossible to fix at home.

p.s. Turn OFF Automatic Updates (at least the auoto-install part of it).


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: Bernard
Date: 11 Dec 06 - 03:03 PM

I dunno... a swift belt wiv a lump 'ammer fixes most problems... permanently!!


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: s&r
Date: 12 Dec 06 - 07:01 PM

I've just restored IE6. Couldn't stand IE7.

Stu


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: Cluin
Date: 12 Dec 06 - 07:04 PM

Me too. As I said in another thread, though I liked the look and arrangement of IE7, it screwed up my MusicMatch Jukebox software to where it wouldn't play and I couldn't reinstall it.

Went back to IE6 and things are fine again. Oh well.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: bobad
Date: 12 Dec 06 - 07:15 PM

I dumped both Firefox 2 and Windows Defender as they were royally screwing things up on my computer.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: wysiwyg
Date: 15 Feb 09 - 02:27 PM

Ahhhhh.... good old Mudcat!

~S~


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: Bill D
Date: 15 Feb 09 - 02:30 PM

I take it some troll post was deleted here?


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Subject: RE: Tech: Dim fonts
From: wysiwyg
Date: 15 Feb 09 - 02:42 PM

No, I refreshed it with appreciation because I needed the info in it.

~S~


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