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The following are my past issues of computer tips as sent to the Tip Group:

The Tip Group for computer help: This first newsletter has a many tips, such as how to close all your open windows at once, and links to info such as substituting keyboard strokes for using the mouse, beginner's guide to downloading and computer security.

My Hard Drive Upgrade Fiasco and Windows 95/98/NT/2000 CD-ROM tip: This is my own story on what happened when I upgraded my system by adding a second hard drive...

Resource Meter: A Tip Group member tells about the usefulness of the Win9x resource meter in keeping track of memory usage. A description of how to set it up is given.

[LIIWEEK] April 10, 2000 newsletter tip: From UC Berkeley, a very well researched, interesting and informative weekly newsletter.

Upgrading drivers commentary and anti-virus advice: Some advice from me.

Dual Boot! My own story of the adventures of setting up a dual boot system with Windows 98 and Linux.

How to get your video card ID: Some info from the net on how to ID your video card without opening up your computer case.

CD RW recommendation: Recommendations for buying a CD burner, discussion about the differences between IDE and SCSI hard drives and a link to more info and a funny story from the net about CD abuse...

Check back again for future newsletters...

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Where to shop for computer hardware and software:

The best places to browse and shop for computer parts and software used to be the computer shows. These were gatherings of local bay area retail vendors who came together regularly each month to sell directly to us in an informal setting. All of the computers that I built were from these vendors and I even knew most of them personally. They were very helpful and fair in their business practices and offered very good deals. Besides that, it was so much fun to browse the products in person for the great bargains they offered which were significantly lower than the standard retail stores such as compusa. They also offered an additional price break for cash purchases over Visa. However, times have changed and these vendors have folded up or left California. I now do my shopping online at Newegg.com.

    There are two organizers of computer shows in the Bay Area:

  • robertaustin.com
    The Robert Austin Computer Shows [NOTE: THE AUSTIN SHOWS HAVE CEASED TO OPERATE - they have sent an email that they are taking a vacation, but now it's been several years since the last show] These are the local Bay Area shows that meet in downtown Oakland at the Marriott and on the peninsula at the Cow Palace each month. Check site for schedule and to sign up for their e-mail list for future show announcements. These announcements also serve as a $2 off coupon for the show entrance fee of $5.
  • MarketPro Computer Shows [NOTE: THE VALLEJO SHOWS HAVE CEASED TO OPERATE IN CALIFORNIA-I DON'T KNOW WHY. IF YOU HAVE ANY INFO PLEASE WRITE TO THE ADDRESS BELOW. THANKS.] This organizer has shows all across the United States, check their web site for locations near you. I used to go to the show in Vallejo each month to buy my hardware for myself and my customers, but this past year many of my favorite hardware vendors stopped selling here. So, now i go to the Robert Austin shows instead. Sign up at the web site for announcements which also serve as $3 off the show entrance fee of $8.
    Specific vendor recommendations:

  • memorymedia.com
    J B C Manufacturing
    [NOTE: JBC HAS CEASED BUSINESS, NO NEW INFO AVAILABLE]
    1-888-522-3726, 1-800-678-5741 or 408-296-1263, Santa Clara, CA
    Owner Ray Hashemieh is the expert on CD-RW, DVD and other disc drives and carries the best selections for your PC. You can ask him all your questions before you buy and he will gladly explain the features and differences of all the products. His current recommendation is Plextor for CD-RW. I wrote about this in my tip above. He sells only at the Robert Austin shows.
  • S. A. Technologies, Inc. 408-980-8355, Santa Clara, CA
    These guys make and sell their own brand of memory modules called Excelerate. They also are the only ones I know who carry all memory and hard drives for laptops. They know every make of laptop and can tell you exactly what memory is available for your model as well as hard drives. They are extremely knowledgeable and very courteous as well. They have a booth at all computer shows.

  • All of the above vendors will ship your order via mail very promptly.

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Links about computers, software, etc:

    software sites:

  • Bootdisk.Com Lost your boot disk? Remake them from this very helpful site. I was able to make Win98 and Win2000 boot discs from the downloaded self-extracting files. Troubleshooting and tech support provided.

    Internet sites:

  • Cookie Central Wondering about those ubiquitous cookies placed onto your computer? Here is all the information as well about privacy issues.
  • The AFU & Urban Legends Archive Wondering about those stories people forward you? Here is all the information which debunks it all. Always check here before you forward e-mail unnecessarily.
  • SARC - Virus Hoaxes Another site to check for hoaxes.
  • Whois Source Domain name search lookup that allows a wildcard search of all current/deleted/expired whois domains.
  • Librarians' Index to the Internet The UC Berkeley Librarians' information page. Sign up for their weekly mailings and find out about interesting and useful web sites.
  • Search Systems - Largest Free Public Records Database Collection This site has public information links for all 50 states such as license info and birth and death records for California.
  • Best Book Buys This site is the best place to begin your online book shopping because it checks over 20 online booksellers simultaneously for availability and best prices.
  • Bookpool: Discount bookstore for technical books The very best place to buy computer books at truly low prices. I buy my books from them and the service is impeccable. The online shopping is very well set up.




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