Welcome to Andy Rathbone's Web site

Site menu:

I'm one of today's best-selling computer book writers, with more than 15 million books in print.

This website keeps you up-to-date on my books, and your computers. Each week, I answer a reader's question on-line.

Windows 10 For Dummies, Second Edition on sale now!

Windows 10 For Dummies

Drop by Amazon.com for big discounts on Windows 10 For Dummies, Second Edition.

Site search

Popular Posts

Recent Comments

Categories

Archive for 'Windows XP'

Can I safely delete Adobe programs like Acrobat, Air, Reader, Shockwave Player, and Flash Player?

Q: Recently a relative gave me a computer that runs Windows XP. I’m trying to clean it up, and I discovered several Adobe programs: Acrobat, Air, Shockwave Player, and Flash Player. Do I need them all, or can they be safely deleted? A: Since its founding in 1982, Adobe Systems has released many programs, and […]

How does a System Image differ from a backup of Windows’ registry?

Q: What’s the difference between a System Image backup versus a backup of the registry? When should we back up the registry? A: The Windows registry is simply a database: a bunch of text and numbers, as shown to the left. It’s a mighty powerful database, though, because Windows stores thousands of important settings inside […]

Why does Windows show my file names in blue letters?

Q: I just noticed that some of my file names have changed to a bluish color in Windows Explorer. They still seem to work okay, but the names are in blue letters. I’ve seen this before, but it was always just one file. This time all the files in one of my folders have changed […]

Is my hand-me-down PC any good?

Q: A friend gave me a used Dell Inspiron 8000 laptop. It has Windows XP Professional installed. One laptop sticker says “Microsoft Windows Millennium Edition. Product Key XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX.” On the right side, a label says “Intel Inside.” Another sticker says “Designed for Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional/Windows Me.” I am flummoxed. What does all this mean? […]

How do I sort my contacts in Outlook Express?

Q: I’m using Outlook Express in Windows XP. How can I list my contacts in alphabetical order? A: The once-popular Outlook Express e-mail program enjoyed a good ten-year run, from Windows 3 to Windows XP. Microsoft’s Windows Vista finally killed it, unfortunately, substituting Windows Mail, which died a short two years later. Outlook Express lovers […]