Just How Fast Is My Internet Connection?

Like most home computer users, you are likely paying for a high-speed internet connection at your home. Your internet access may be provided by the cable company, the phone company (DSL) or satellite provider. Most of these providers tell you that you will get some minimum download speed like 3Mbps (Mega Bits Per Second) but that you may see faster speeds, but how do you know what you are really getting?

There is a really easy to use internet speed test at http://speakeasy.

Laptop Shopping Revisited

Two years ago I covered laptop shopping here in the Computer Corner. Obviously, laptops have changed quite a bit both in performance and price since then so we will revisit the subject.

This is the time of year parents are trying to find the right laptop for their new college students.

Internet Explorer Cleanup

The latest Internet Explorer 7 web browser from Microsoft is still the most popular browser, but is certainly less than perfect. I have seen a myriad of quirky little problems with it.

Sometimes clicking the back button will present you with "webpage expired" rather than displaying the web page you were just looking at 10 seconds ago.

How To Email Links

Have you ever gotten an email that had a link to some great article your friend wanted you to read, but when you clicked on the link it didn't work? Many times, the problem is that the link is so long that it breaks into two or three lines in the email and this breaks it.

Simple Security, Faster Computer

We all want our computers to run as fast as they possibly can, but we also want them to be secure from viruses, hackers and spyware. The problem is that many computer security software packages really slow down the performance of your computer.

The best approach, as it is with most things, is to keep it simple.

Too Many Toolbars in Internet Explorer

For many years Internet Explorer has provided a way for other companies to build toolbars that can be used to add functionality to the browser. I personally love the Google toolbar. It provides a quick way for me to search the Internet and provides a way to share your favorites among multiple computers.

Online Backups

As internet connections have gotten faster and larger files can be pushed across the web, a new consumer service offering has really taken off - online backups. The typical backup system for a home PC is either a manual process like burning your files to a CD or an automatic setup like software that copies your files to an external hard drive every night.

Asterisk Logger

Have you ever opened the email account settings in Outlook or Outlook Express and found your password masked with asterisks? Now there is a utility that will unhide that password.

A company called NirSoft has created a free utility that lets you see what is hidden in those asterisk fields.

Microsoft Office 2007 Compatibility

For years now, Microsoft Office 2003 has been the most popular Office version. Microsoft Office 2007 installations are growing though and will eventually take the lead. In the past, it has not mattered too much if you had Office 2000, Office XP (2002) or Office 2003 as each version of Excel, Word and PowerPoint could read the other versions in most cases.

Folder Size for Windows

Have you ever run low on hard drive space and not been able to figure out where it all went? Windows has never had any built-in way to easily find folders hiding lots of large files. Folder Size for Windows provides that ability.

To install Folder Size, open your web browser and go to http://preactiveit.