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Monday, December 11, 2000
Dr Tribune

I have a well-configured PC and it is a month old. I have 20 GB HDD, P III 500 MHz, 64 MB Simtronics RAM, 48x CD ROM, Win ’98 plus operating system. My problem is it often hangs irrespective of which program it is running on. In just a month I have reinstalled Windows 4 times but in vain.

— Pankaj Chopra

Dr Tribune: Apparently, it looks that there is a problem in your motherboard. You must first get the motherboard checked for any kind of errors. However, if the motherboard is OK, then you can pinpoint on RAM, which can also cause such type of problems. The chances of any kind of software-related problems are less; so do not reload the operating system again and again.

I like to connect my computer with my friend’s computer, who is my neighbour. What do I need to do for this? Please suggest.

— Maninder Singh

Dr Tribune: Connecting computer with your neighbour could be difficult though there are several methods for connecting two or more computers. Since in your case, the computer connectivity has to cross the boundary of your house, so there would be many factors, which you might have to take into consideration. If you are living in apartments, then things could be easier and you can plan to have a LAN, which would connect your computer. If you live in separate houses, which are adjacent, then also you can explore the option of setting up a LAN. But if your friend’s house is across the lane (road), then the option of dial-up networking would be better.


I have Pentium III, 450 MHz computer, 32 MB RAM, 6.4 GB hard disk with 4 partitions. I have Windows ’98 operating system loaded on my computer. Recently my computer got infected by boot sector virus named Eek(b). I have Norton anti-virus installed on my system. When it starts scanning, it shows message that the computer is infected by boot sector virus and then computer start after scanning. I scan my hard disk with anti-virus but boot sector virus has not been removed. Please help me to remove this virus.

— Satinder Singh

Dr Tribune: The virus mentioned affects the floppy and master boot records and is a very common virus. However, it may affect the computer severely by encrypting the boot sector records. For removing this virus, you must first boot the system, with a clean and virus free floppy and then try to run an anti-virus, which you can run from a floppy or a CD. This will remove the virus from your computer.

I have a P-III 450 MHz computer with Windows ’98. During booting I get a message "Boot from ATAPI CD ROM". Although the computer starts properly without any problem, yet I want to make this message stop appearing. What should I do?

— Amit

Dr Tribune: Your system needs minor changes in CMOS set-up utility settings. In the BIOS feature set-up, change the boot sequence to C, A and then save settings and exit CMOS set-up utility. On rebooting, the message will not bother you again.

I have a P III with 64 MB RAM running Win ’98. For the past 15 days, whenever I load the windows, after the desktop comes, the machine stops for say 15 seconds. It seems to access the A drive as the light goes on for a while. It was not like this before. Please help me out.

— Rakesh Bhatara

Dr Tribune: First, check the BIOS feature set-up in the CMOS set-up utility and check the boot sequence. If it has changed to A: drive first, then you should change it back to the original. However, if you find that the boot sequence is not changed, then it could possibly be due to the installation of software, which source some of its files from A: drive. You can correct it from the autoexec.bat file.

I want to ask the following questions.

1. After deleting the messages from the deleted items, where do they go? Are they permanently deleted or do they form .tmp files in hard disk.

2. I could not make the list of addresses in address book in Outlook Express’98. Please tell me about this.

— U.K.Yadav

Dr Tribune: There are two ways of deleting the messages from any folder: either you can delete it directly or you send it to the trash box. If you have deleted the message directly, then the message is permanently deleted and cannot be retrieved. However, if you have transferred it to the trash box, then the item would remain there until you empty the trash box. But once you empty the trash box the message is deleted permanently. The deleted messages never form .tmp files in temp folder. Regarding, the second query of making address book, please explain the problem encountered in making the address book. Your question is not clear and hence it is not possible to answer it.

First I would like to thank you for your weekly magazine "Login…Tribune". My question is, I have a 686 MX 200 MHz. processor with 32 MB RAM, 4.3 GB hard disk. I want to change my hard disk to 10.2 GB with 64 MB RAM. Will my processor work on this capacity of hard disk (10.2 GB)?

— Lovepreet Brar

Dr Tribune: Upgrading the hard disk to higher storage capacity will not be a problem in your case and with an additional 32 MB RAM, the performance of computer will rather improve. However, I would suggest you to partition your disk in order to make it more efficient.

I have a problem in my Internet connection. With the same settings in the PC, sometimes I get Internet connectivity and sometimes I do not. I have 2 modems but I get Internet connected only by the older one, another modem of mine is new & perfectly ok. Please tell me the reason.

— Atul Jindal

Dr Tribune: There could be a number of reasons for not getting good connectivity to the Net. These reasons could be external or internal. The external reasons are bad line conditions, inefficient telephone exchange and multiple extensions, whereas the internal conditions are improper settings. From the mail it is not clear, what exactly is your problem. You must try to find out, whether the telephone has any external problem. This you can confirm from other users using the Internet in the area. If there is a problem, then you will have to seek a solution locally. However, if it is an internal problem, which are specifically related to modems or settings, then please write us with exact problem.

I have a PC with Vintron Intel i810 chipset motherboard, Celeron 566 MHz processor, 64 MB SD RAM, 10.2GB hard disk having 2 partitions & file system FAT 32.

My problems are:

1. I have Win ’98 as OS on C drive of my hard disk and want to load Redhat Linux on other partition. Can I do it?

2. When I run any program with Winamp after some time a message box appears saying "This program has performed an illegal operation & will be closed down. If the problem persists contact the program vendor" giving two command buttons close & debug and when I click on close the application closes abruptly or Winamp closes. Tell me where the problem lies & how I should correct it.

3. When I run disk defragmenter it took too much of time, usually an hour and sometimes even up to 2 to 3 hours. Often after 10 per cent completion & sometimes even after completing 80 per cent fragmentation, the whole process starts again & message appears along with progress bar saying: "Disk information has been changed". Should I adjust my screensaver, power scheme features of my monitor & hard disk & system standby before going for defragmentation.

— Vikas Sharma

Dr Tribune: RedHat Linux is compatible with all versions of Windows including Windows ’98: thus you can install it on the other partition of the computer. However, before you install make sure that you have minimum of 500 MB disk space on the other partition, which is required for a minimum set of files for Linux. However, it would be better if you can spare 1.5 GB for this purpose. Though the Linux can be installed anywhere in the blank space, but If you can dedicate a partition, then it would be even better. Regarding your Winamp problem, it appears that some of.dll files of both software are clashing. Therefore it gives you the error. Try to reinstall WinAmp again and in some other directory other than the one where it is presently installed. It might help in your case. Regarding your 3rd problem. It is always advisable to run scandisk before running disk defragmenter. It clears problems in your hard disk and makes it possible to defragment the hard disk correctly.

I am using Internet Explorer. Please clear the following:

1. Usage of ping command in context to the Internet.

2. Can I use Outlook to download mail from hotmail.com?

3. Does opening of 4 to 5 sites simultaneously decrease the speed of working? (with 64 Mb RAM)

— Gurpal Singh

Dr Tribune: Ping command is normally related to the continuity of the Internet connection with the server. The main purpose is to test a system on the Internet to see if it is working. "Pinging" a server can also test and record the response time of servers and other computers connected to the Internet. This is helpful in finding the Internet bottlenecks, so that data transfer paths can be re-routed the most efficient way. Also, a good way to make sure you do not get disconnected from your ISP for being idle is to send a ping every 5 minutes or so.

Regarding your second query, Outlook Express has an inbuilt feature for Hotmail. You can send and receive mails from the Hotmail account using the Outlook Express. It simply means that you need not open the Hotmail site to send and receive emails, as you can send it from Outlook Express.

It is true that opening of several sites simultaneously can slow down the Internet connectivity as the data gets distributed in several windows and since the downloading speed does not increase, thus the overall speed for opening individual sites goes down. Having 64 MB RAM does not really help much as it cannot increase the download speed. Nevertheless, higher RAM helps in reopening a page, as the data is stored in it, so that you can open it again promptly.

I have 2 e-mail accounts, one in Yahoo! and another in rediff. I use both regularly. I have friends who have their e-mail IDs in other sites like snipermail and usa.net. I want to know which instant messenger to use so that I can check my incoming e-mails instantly when I am online and also to know which friend is available online. Yahoo! messenger does not help me, because I suppose here only those user can be added in the list who has an account in Yahoo!

— Sandeep Sood

Dr Tribune: There are limitations on various messengers available on the Net as most of them recognise their own users only and do not recognise the users having account with other Web mails. So, in your case, you will need at least 2 programs to fulfil your purpose. For the purpose of checking mails from Yahoo! and rediff, you can use the software @nymail; we have discussed this software in one of our issues. Please refer to it for details. For keeping the track of your buddies online, you can download ICQ. This is the best messenger and offers many functions including chatting. However, your friends would be required to download, install and register this software.

For all your computer-related problems contact Dr Tribune at drtribune@tribuneindia.com