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Monday, October 22, 2001
Dr Tribune

Q. I have an assembled PC, with following configuration — Intel Celeron 300A processor, creative Ensonique PCI 128 sound card, IBM 8.4 GB hard disk, Intel 440zx chipset motherboard, 288 MB RAM, 32x LG CD ROM, creative modem blaster external 56.6 KBPS modem and inno3d geforce2 MX 400 64 MB GPU. The system is running on Win ’98 SE with plus pack. I have two memory slots. There are two modules — one of 32 MB PC66 and the other of 256 MB PC 133.What is the effective bus speed I get using the two modules together and is it of worth using the 32 MB module? I usually play a lot of games. The other problem was that as I have such huge amount of RAM and a GPU of 64 MB onboard RAM, the graphics are not so good as I expected. Will I have to upgrade my processor? The last question is that I wanted to talk on the phone line from my computer? Is that possible?

Pardeep Singh, Phagwara

A. The Celeron processor mentioned by you has the maximum bus speed of 66 MHz. Thus any RAM of higher capacity like the one you are using would give the maximum speed of 66 MHz only. Thus no matter how fast RAM you put in you would not be able to get anything higher than 66 MHz. However, more amount of RAM would definitely mean an overall better system performance. Regarding your second question of the worth of 32 MB RAM, I feel that it is certainly worth it. Regarding your next question, it is important to understand that the process in consideration is quite a low-end processor with no L1 cache. Moreover, a slow system bus speed further makes it not an ideal machine for playing games that involve high-end graphics. So ideally if you don’t mind spending more money for playing games then you can go in for better processors and motherboard. Regarding your last question of using your computer for talking on the telephone line, you can easily do it by using any communication software, which normally comes free with the modem.


Q. I have Intel Celeron 333 MHz. PC with 2.1 GB HDD, 32 MB RAM, Yamaha Sound card. When I boot the system, it gets slow. I want to format the hard disk. But I have no sound card driver. My sound card is Yamaha. Please tell me that where I search the sound card driver. I have Internet connection. I shall be thankful to you for this.

Harpreet Bhalla, Nawanshahr

A. If your PC has become slow over a period of time, then you can improve its performance even without formatting it also. However, if you have to format your hard disk then, you can get the best performance from your PC. Regarding your query about the sound card, you can easily get it from the CD, which you must have got with the sound card. However, if you do not have it now, then you can search the site of hardware manufacturer for the updated veriosn of driver. Otherwise you can log onto the sites like www.windrivers.com for more information’s on drivers.

Q. I have a P III 800 MHz with 256 RAM, 40 GB HDD ASUS motherboard, OS Win ME and my ISP is VSNL. I have configured Yahoo! mail account in Outlook Express. My incoming server is pop.mail.yahoo.com and outgoing is smtp.mail.yahoo.com. I can receive the mail correctly but cannot send the mail. Tell me where is the problem.

Minnu Gill, Kapurthala

A. It’s a common problem with the Yahoo! e-mail account configured in the e-mail client. The best solution of this type of the problem is to use the SMTP address of your Internet service provider (VSNL in your case). This way you get the best of both the worlds and also bye pass the problem of using SMTP server address of the Yahoo!

Q. My system configurations are — Pentium III, 866 MHz, Intel 810 e chipset motherboard, 20 GB HDD 48x creative CD ROM, ATX Cabinet. My OS is Win ’98 1st edition. My problems are:

1. On booting, my computer shows main processor as Intel Pentium III, 866 MHz, but in start menu-settings-Control panel -general tab, it shows processor as genuine Intel Pentium(r)!! Processor Intel MMX (TM) technology. Please tell me what kind of processor do I have and does this problem persist due to wrong settings of motherboard or any other thing.

2. I play MP 3 songs in Winamp. They play properly. But if I try to hear songs from a CD that has no MP 3 songs I am unable to hear those although seek bar progresses as if the song is playing. The same happens with .midi files. I have no extra sound card and have onboard sound card.

Parvesh Sachdeva, Pinjore

A. First of all, you must understand that the Pentium processors have different technical name from the one, which is being commonly used. So, don’t get alarmed, when you see such kind of description in control panel. So practically this does not represent a problem. Regarding your second problem there are two possibilities:

Either, you have not properly connected the cable, which connects motherboard with a CD ROM. If this cable is not in place, then you’ll not be able to access any sound from the CD ROM. Most probably this seems to be the problem in your case. However if you’re sure that you have connected the cable well then, check out all necessary sound card drivers and if possible update then with the latest version. The best way to do this is by opening control panel and then clicking on systems. Now click on the device manager tab, and check out that all sound card drivers that are not working. Reinstall all these drivers using their correct version and restart your PC. Since you are mentioned that your sound card is onboard so you will get all drivers on the motherboard CD.

Q. I have a Celeron 333 MHz, 4GB HDD, 32MB RAM system in my home. The system runs on Windows ’98 platform. Since about last one month, the usual shut down message, that is "It is now safe to shut down your computer" is not flashed. I remember once reading about the solution to this problem in a very old issue of your column. Please suggest how this message can be revived. Also, can this message be changed to some other personal message, say, goodbye or other sign-off messages?

N.S. Hanspal, Rae Bareli, UP

A. This is a common Windows ’98 shut down problem and would require a patch from the Microsoft’s site, which will solve this problem. Regarding your second query, you can change the shut down message, but that would require registry editing. Please check out our past issues for detailed answers for both these problems.

Q. I have P III 550 MHz PC with win 98 as OS with two partitions. I use Internet Explorer 5.5 as my browser. Sir, my problem is that whenever I delete anything, earlier it used to go to Recycle Bin and then I used to delete it completely from there. But now the deleted item does not go to Recycle Bin and gets deleted directly. The Bin remains empty. Why is it so? How should I rectify the problem? Please advice.

Harpal Singh

A. The reason why your files get deleted directly is because you have chosen to do so in the Recycle bin properties. In the Recycle bin properties, there is an option, which is selected directly deletes the files without transferring it to the Recycle bin. Now in order to change the setting and restore the normal procedure of sending the deleted files first to recycled bin, simply right click on the Recycle bin icon, and then click on properties. Now uncheck the box adjoining the option of "Do not move files to the recycle bin. Remove files immediately when deleted". Now click apply and then click OK. This would restore your previous setting.

Q. I have an Intel Celeron 433 MHz with Azza Intel 810 motherboard, 64 MB Simtronics RAM, Motorola SM56 PCI Speaker Phone Internal Modem and a VSNL connection. My problem is that sometimes while surfing the Net I get disconnected as I can hear the sound of the disconnection from the modem. However, the connection icon on the task bar near the clock shows me as connected. Sometimes the system hangs and I have to restart it.

Simrat Pal Singh Gill, Moga.

A. It is quite common that often the connection icon on the task bar shows the connection is still alive, while you are disconnected from the Internet. This actually does not represent a problem but could mean that your system is busy completing other operations. In such cases when you click on the connection icon that it immediately shows the status of disconnection. So do not get bothered by this, as this is not actually the problem. However if you get disconnected from the Internet quite often then this could be a problem. Regarding the problem of the system hanging, please run scan disk in thorough mode and checkout the possibility of any bad sectors in your hard disk. Even if you do not find any bad sectors in your hard disk, scan disk will take care of any other errors that might be causing the system hanging. However this problem comes up to too often try reinstalling Windows. This will solve a problem unless it is a problem of hardware like motherboard, RAM or processor.

Q. I have Pentium III 450 MHz, PC 64 MB PAM, 10GB HDD, Intel 815 Motherboard, Windows’98 as the operating system. My problem is that lines have started appearing on my computer screen. Sometime the screen is full of lines and after sometime when I refresh the screen it disappears as if there is no problem. Secondly, whenever I empty my Recycle Bin, it shows me error (cannot delete - cannot find the specified file. Make sure you specify the correct path and filename) and also deletes the file in the Recycle Bin.

Ankit, Jalandhar

A. The lines on your computer monitor would be due to the faulty cable or connector. Please fix the connector properly behind your computer and also check it for any fault including short circuit or loose connections. In most of the cases this problem is due to the above-mentioned reasons only. However if you find it to be all right in your case, then please check your VGA card for any possible errors.

Q. I have a PC at home. The configuration of the PC is CPU type — Pentium III, CPU speed 800 EB MHz, motherboard - TIGA technologies 810+ RAM - 128 MB (Mitsubishi), Hard disk 20 GB (Seagate), AT cabinet and Windows ’98 SE operating system. My problem is that the processing speed of the processor has decreased. Many times, I have executed defrag command but the result remains the same. It often hangs while surfing the Internet and also takes time to open any site. My second problem is that I want to load Linux on the system as well as I want to keep Windows on the system. Please guide me how can I come out of these problems.

Abhinav Jain, Ludhiana

A. First of all you must run scan disk in thorough mode and then run defrag. However, even now if you come across the same problems that you were facing earlier, then disable your screen-saver and any other program which might be working in the background and then run defrag. This will help you run defrag successfully. Regarding the problem of system hanging while surfing the Internet, there could be many possible reasons for this kind of problem. However for possible solution of this problem, please keep the memory and disk cache clean and also keep your system clean of all temporary and other junk files. This should solve your problem. Regarding your query about installing Linux on your hard disk, it is very much possible to do so, but I would suggest you to take the help of installation guide or Linux manual before installing it on your computer.

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