Log in ....Tribune

Dot.ComLatest in ITFree DownloadsOn hardware

Monday, April 16, 2001
Dr Tribune

I use my computer mostly for Auto-CAD work, which is precise, precious and time consuming. Presently I store the whole data on my hard disk. Other members of the family also use the same computer. From the safety point of view, I want to have some reliable back-up arrangement that can be updated for additional work from time to time. At present there are about 2500 files that I want to store in the backup also. Floppy disc are of low capacity, CD drive requires CD-writer and is expensive. So kindly advise suitable mode for backup.

— Jagir Singh, Chandigarh

These days the hard disks normally have a large capacity so the easiest solution is to dedicate a specific partition of your hard disk for backing up your files. You can protect them with password and can even hide it so that it is not accessible to anybody. The second solution could be a Zip drive, where you can keep your data in large capacity floppies and can even carry them with you. This option is a bit expensive, as you will have to additionally buy external Zip drive. However, the option of CD-writer is the best as you can store a large amount of data on your CD. Besides that the data on a CD is safest.

I have a P III, 667 MHz (based 100 MHz SD RAM) with 64 RAM on HP Pavillion. My operating system is Windows ’98 SE on 10.2 GB ultra DMA ATA 66 hard drive (about 7 GB free space). I have an Internet connection from the BSNL. I face a problem — the system sometimes freezes and then neither keyboard nor mouse works. I have to turn the power off. Please guide me whether increasing RAM to 128 will solve my problem?

— S.P. Arora

You must run Scandisk first in thorough mode in order to check any problems in your hard disk. If the scan disk does not work properly in Windows, then you must run it in DOS mode. If there is any problem, then scan disk will report about it. Moreover, you must also check the result for any bad sectors in your hard disk as this could be one of the reasons for your problem. However, if everything is reported fine by Scan disk, then the needle of suspicion would go to the motherboard of your computer. This you will have to get checked from your hardware vendor. Your problem has nothing to do with increasing the RAM and thus increasing it to 128 MB will not actually solve your problem.


I have Pentium III 500 MHz Processor, 64 MB RAM, Win ’98 SE with internal modem (Motorola SM56PCI Speakerphone). Usually when I try to connect to the Internet, I get an error 678 showing the message "Dial-up network was unable to complete the connection. Double click the Connect icon to connect again" and after sometime I am able to connect. Somebody told me that this problem is due to internal modem and if I use an external modem, I may be able to connect the very first time. I also consulted the Log In... Issue for October 2, 2000 in which you had mention some techniques to improve the modem. I tried to check my telephone line using HyperTerminal, but when I selected Direct to com X in "Connect to Windows", I did not get the com X properties. I got a blank window instead. When I enter the said terms (ATZ, AT&FDT ISP’s number) it dials using tone dialling that I don’t have. So please tell me what to do with my internal modem to avoid that error and also how can I check my telephone line using HyperTerminal.

— Rohit Singla, Patiala

This is a very common confusion in the minds of many persons that the Internal modems are not efficient and give errors. However this is not correct. Though undoubtedly external modems are better in terms of overall performance and ease of use yet the internal modems give identical results as far as the Net speed is concerned. Whether it is Internal modem or external modem, what is more important is chip set of the modem. If the Internal modem good chipset like rockwell, then there is no problem in it. The problem mentioned by you is not linked to the internal modem and there could be many reasons for such kind of error. Now the technique you are talking about is to check the line conditions and not the modem. So it will really not help you in analysing your modem. However for a precise solution to your problem, please write in detail including the messages you get.

Whenever I start my computer I get message: "No ISDN devices were found. Please install an ISDN device and run the configuration wizard." I neither had ever installed nor wish to install ISDN device. Kindly advice how to get rid of this message to avoid clicking "OK" each time.

— Sangita, Kapurthala

Although for solving your problem information about your operating system and system configuration is necessary. However, it appears that while configuring your Internet connection, you had opted for ISDN connection. I think because of this reason you get the warning for ISDN device. As a solution to this problem either remove the ISDN connection wizard or reconfigure your dial-up networking.

I have Windows ME installed on my computer. I want to configure my Outlook Express to get my mail from my account on rediff.com but I don’t know how to configure. Please tell me what to write in the incoming mail server and the outgoing mail server fields.

Abhishek Sharma, Kurukshetra

Rediff mail is a Web-based e-mail service, so its pop and SMTP server names are not available. However, for configuring an e-mail account in your e-mail client, the information about these two servers is quite essential. So, practically it is difficult to configure rediff mail account in Outlook Express.

I have a problem with playing VCDs. It hangs the system, then it plays for 4 to 5 seconds and hangs again. The HDD and CD ROM drive’s LED glows continuously with full light when it hangs. All other CDs (program and audio) run well. I tried everything I know. I have installed right drivers for the drive. My system is p200 MMX, 32 MB RAM, Cirrus 5446 VGA with 2 MB RAM, creative CD ROM drive and OS is Win ’95.

— Akashdeep

This problem normally occurs in case of low memory. So in order to get rid of this problem you need to increase your memory and if possible a better VGA card with higher VRAM. Moreover, you also need to increase the size of the paging file size. Also you should keep a good space on your hard disk free. So the first thing you should try to do is free up some hard disk space. As a rule of thumb you should always keep at least 10 per cent of your hard disk capacity always free, though higher is better. If this solves you problem, its well and good, else you would be required to increase the memory.

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