Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

Trick For Keeping Your Pictures In Order*

A Reader Asks A Good Question..

Q:I have a folder with 200 pictures which I have arranged in a very specific order. I want to burn them to a CD, but when I try to burn them in Roxio they burn to a cd but not in the order that they are in the folder. Any help is appreciated. “

A: The trick for resolving this puzzle is to understand that computers will do their own arranging (and assigning), using a pre-configured, rigid, logic — generally alphabetical order (aka “naming convention”).

So even though you have carefully nudged the icons representing (for human viewing) your photos (actually JPEG files) around into an arranged order of your liking, the machine will still think of the files in terms of IMG0001.JPG, followed by the “greater than” IMG0002.JPG (2 is “greater than” 1) which will be followed by the “greater than” IMG0003.JPG. Etc.

So the answer is to rename the files , and do so in an order that matches your order.

If you had just a few files, you could manually rename the first image by giving it a name and adding a one. Repeating for the second image, but adding a 2. And, repeating for the third image, but adding a 3. As I did for this collection of screenshots that were going to be a slideshow (and needed a certain ‘order’)

But since you have so many, you need an easier way – what is called a “batch rename” by us Über Geeks.

1) Arrange the photos into the order you like.

2) Click on one of the images to turn it blue (aka “select it”)

3) Hold down the Ctrl key and press the “A” key (or Edit > Select All). This will turn all the images blue (all are now ‘selected’).

4) Right-click on the first image, and choose Rename from the context menu (the name of small side window that pops open).
Your cursor will now be blinking inside the file name ‘box’.

5) Type in a ‘name’ — preferably something related to your project, or the subject matter.
(This one might be “fishtrip”, for example.)

IMPORTANT  Do NOT add a number — this is done automatically during the rename process

Press Enter.

Note: If for some reason you are unhappy with the result.. say you made a mistake, you can Undo the rename you just did by pressing Ctrl+Z (or going to the Edit menu and choosing the top choice – “Undo rename”. (I love Ctrl + Z!)

Now that you have put your ordering in terms a computer cannot argue with, your CD burning software, or “import”-ing into PowerPoint, or whatnot, will respect and follow your arrangement.
Because “fishtrip (4).jpg” is ‘greater than’ (aka “alphabetical”) “fishtrip (3).jpg” … right? Right.

Remember folks, machines are kinda dumb: they can only “think” in binary (a 1 or a 0)(aka “true or false”, “on or off”). They cannot “see” your photo – they see C:\User Name\Pictures\IMAG0001.JPG. (which is really just a big block of 0’s and 1’s…)

Sorta related: Make Your Photos and Videos Automatically Fly From Your Camera to Your Computer

I spend much of my obsession for technology, by looking for the latest technology in computers and computer accessories on Amazon .. Today, I came across a technology that I did not know about that is just downright impressive.” Read more..

* Orig post: 10/24/11

Today’s quote:A good character is the best tombstone. Those who loved you and were helped by you will remember you when forget-me-nots have withered. Carve your name on hearts, not on marble.” ~ Charles H. Spurgeon

Copyright 2007-2012 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


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April 10, 2012 Posted by | advice, computers, how to | , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

How To Keep Your Images In A Specific Order

Reader Asks A Good Question..

Q:I have a folder with 200 pictures which I have arranged in a very specific order. I want to burn them to a CD, but when I try to burn them in Roxio they burn to a cd but not in the order that they are in the folder. Any help is appreciated. ”

A: The trick for resolving this puzzle is to understand that computers will do their own arranging (and assigning), using a pre-configured, rigid, logic — generally alphabetical order. So even though you have carefully nudged the icons representing (for human viewing) your photos (actually JPEG files) around into an arranged order of your liking, the machine will still think of the files in terms of IMG0001.JPG, followed by the “greater than” IMG0002.JPG (2 is “greater than” 1) which will be followed by the “greater than” IMG0003.JPG.
Etc.

So the answer is to rename the files , and do so in an order that matches your order.

If you had just a few files, you could manually rename the first image by giving it a name and adding a one. Repeating for the second image, but adding a 2. And, repeating for the third image, but adding a 3. As I did for this collection of screenshots that were going to be a slideshow (and needed a certain ‘order’)

But since you have so many, you need an easier way – what is called a “batch rename” by us Über Geeks.

1) Arrange the photos into the order you like.

2) Click on one of the images to turn it blue (aka “select it”)

3) Hold down the Ctrl key and press the “A” key (or Edit > Select All). This will turn all the images blue (all are now ‘selected’).

4) Right-click on the first image, and choose Rename from the context menu (the name of small side window that pops open).
Your cursor will now be blinking inside the file name ‘box’.

5) Type in a ‘name’ — preferably something related to your project, or the subject matter.
(This one might be “fishtrip”, for example.)

IMPORTANT  Do NOT add a number — this is done automatically during the rename process

Press Enter.

Note: If for some reason you are unhappy with the result.. say you made a mistake, you can Undo the rename you just did by pressing Ctrl+Z (or going to the Edit menu and choosing the top choice – “Undo rename”. (I love Ctrl + Z!)

Now that you have put your ordering in terms a computer cannot argue with, your CD burning software, or “import”-ing into PowerPoint, or whatnot, will respect and follow your arrangement.
Because “fishtrip (4).jpg” is ‘greater than’ (aka “alphabetical”) “fishtrip (3).jpg” … right? Right.

Remember folks, machines are kinda dumb: they can only “think” in binary (a 1 or a 0)(aka “true or false”, “on or off”). They cannot “see” your photo – they see C:\User Name\Pictures\IMAG0001.JPG.

Sorta related: Make Your Photos and Videos Automatically Fly From Your Camera to Your Computer

I spend much of my obsession for technology, by looking for the latest technology in computers and computer accessories on Amazon .. Today, I came across a technology that I did not know about that is just downright impressive.” Read more..

Today’s quote:A little learning is a dangerous thing, but a lot of ignorance is just as bad.” ~ Bob Edwards

(There’s something about this quote.. something.. “off”, I think)

Copyright 2007-2011 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


>> Folks, don’t miss an article! To get Tech – for Everyone articles delivered to your e-mail Inbox, click here, or to subscribe in your RSS reader, click here. <<


October 24, 2011 Posted by | computers | , , , , , , , , , | 37 Comments

Quick Tip: Easy Trick Creates A File List

This quick and simple trick will produce a list of the files in any folder, which you can then paste into any text editor, then Save and/or print. (Possibly a handy way to keep track of your music/videos collection.)

1) Open the folder you would like to list.

2) Click on one of the files to “select” it (turn it blue), and then hit Ctrl+A (the keyboard shortcut for “Select all”) to highlight all the files in the folder.

3) Right-click on any of the (now highlighted) files, and click on “Send To“, and then “Mail Recipient“.. as shown below. (This right-click menu is called the “Context menu”, btw.)
send_to

4) This will open your computer’s default e-mail client (Outlook Express, for example) and the ‘body’ of the e-mail will be your list of files.

5) Highlight (aka “select”) the list, and then press Ctrl+C (or, in the Menu bar: Edit > Copy) to copy the text to the clipboard.

6) Open your text editor (Word, Notepad, etc.) and press Ctrl+V (or, in the Menu bar: Edit > Paste) to ‘paste’ the list into your document.

Now you can Save this text file, or simply print it out.

[note: you can ‘paste’ the list into other programs as well, such as a spreadsheet program – like Excel.]

Copyright 2007-2010 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved.jaanix post to jaanix

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February 2, 2010 Posted by | advice, computers, e-mail, how to, tech | , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

How To Install a New Font

Sometimes, our creative side demands that we use a special, uncommon font– a fancy and festive font perhaps. Fortunately, there are many fonts (and font “families”) available for downloading and adding to your computer’s repertoire.

Last year around this time, I published the article Add color to your documents, and I demonstrated a few word processor tricks to brighten up your Holiday letters of Season’s Greeting. This year, I’m going to suggest you enter “download fonts” in a search engine, and explore the world of typefaces. (Or.. see today’s free link below.)

When you have found one you like, and have downloaded it..
To install a font, follow these steps:

  1. Click Start, and then click Run.
  2. Type the following command, “%windir%fonts” (no quotes) and then click OK:
  3. On the File menu, click Install New Font. (Vista users: right-click in a blank area of the fonts folder, and select from the context menu.)
  4. In the Drives box, click the drive that contains the font that you want to add, (usually C:) and turn it blue.
    Note The floppy disk drive is typically drive A. The CD drive is typically drive D.
  5. In the Folders box, click the folder that contains the font that you want to add, and then click OK. (Desktop is found in your User folder. C:UsersusernameDesktop)
  6. In the List of fonts box, click the font that you want to add. To select more than one font at a time, press and hold the CTRL key while you select each font.
  7. Click to select the Copy Fonts To Fonts Folder check box. The new font is saved in the WindowsFonts folder.
  8. Click OK.

install_fonts

Windows supports TrueType fonts, or fonts that are designed especially for Windows which can be purchased and/or downloaded separately. Some programs also include special fonts (which are installed as part of the program installation). Additionally, TrueType or special Windows fonts are frequently included with printers.

Today’s free link: An excellent resource for fonts is 1001 Free Fonts. Each font is available in both a PC (Windows) and a Mac version, so be sure to click the right button.

I’m not sure why.. but this one grabs my attention..
capture3
.. but it’s not what I would use in a Holiday Greeting letter. Hmmm… maybe calligraphy?

Copyright 2007-8 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved. post to jaanix

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November 26, 2008 Posted by | advice, Apple, computers, how to, MS Word, PC, software, tech, tweaks, Windows | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Questions About File Extensions*

Today I will answer a few reader questions in the (hopefully) now familiar “Q’s and their A’s” format, and provide a link to a free disk imaging program.

Q: What is a .bkp file?
A: First of all, it is helpful to know what a “file extension” is. The dot three-letters (sometimes four, as in website/index.html) ending you see at the end of file names is a method used to tell machines what category of file this string of code is (remember, it is just a series of 0’s and 1’s), and whether or not it is an “executable” file (such as a program.exe).
Your machine uses the extension to determine which program to use to open the file.

You are probably familiar with the more common file extensions: .doc and .txt for text, .xls for a spreadsheet, .jpg for pictures, and .htm or .html for webpages. Frankly, there are quite a few dot whatevers — too many to list here– the short answer is a .bkp is the backup file created by Windows Backup utility. This is the file you will use to restore your files should something untoward happen, and so you should treat it with care, and store a copy in two locations; on a CD or DVD and on a different drive or partition.
If you ever run across a .xyz that you’ve never seen before, and have no idea how it got there or what it does, the place to find out is the website FILExt.

Q: My computer is not showing file extensions, how do I make them visible?
A: You must turn off the “Hide Known File Extensions” feature. Open Windows Explorer using the shortcut mentioned in this prior article (Windows key+E) and from the Tools menu select (click) “Folder Options”. Then click on the “View” tab. Find and uncheck the checkbox by “Hide known file extensions”, as shown below. fldopts.jpg

Now click on the “Apply to All Folders” button, and then “OK”.

Vista users: In Vista you access this Options window via the Folder Options applet in the Control Panel. Start> Control Panel> Folder Options.

This answer is a good security tip as well, because hackers will sometimes take advantage of this by sending executable code disguised as something harmless.

Here’s how they’d do it: say they wrote a virus, we’ll call it “nastyvirus.exe”. If you received an email with the attachment nastyvirus.exe you probably wouldn’t click on it (and if you did, you really shouldn’t be using a computer! Sheeze). So the bad guy renames the virus “cutepuppy.jpg.exe.” If the Hide known extensions feature is on, it will appear to you as cutepuppy.jpg and you’ll be inclined to think the email attachment is a picture… and NOT a piece of nasty code.
Please note: for some inexplicable reason, Microsoft has Hide Known Extensions enabled by default. If you have not already turned this off, please do so now.

Today’s free download: regular readers of Tech–for Everyone know that I routinely advise making system backups for the purposes of “disaster” recovery. One highly recommend backup method is to make an “image” of your hard drive or partition with a program like Norton Ghost or Acronis True Image.
If your hard-drive is made by Maxtor or Seagate (Seagate has purchased Maxtor), you can download a free, basic version of Acronis, to clone, image, or transfer your system. The tool is called Maxtor MaxBlast. [note: if you backup the image to an external drive, it must be a Maxtor/Seagate drive as well.]

Copyright 2007-8 © Tech Paul, All Rights Reserved.jaanix post to jaanix

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September 20, 2008 Posted by | advice, computers, file system, how to, PC, security, tech, tweaks | , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Make Outlook open when Windows starts

Do you have a favorite program that you’d like to start as soon as Windows does — perhaps your email client? I have told you in previous articles about stopping programs from loading at boot, and today I’ll tell you how to reverse the process, and gain further control your computer’s behavior.

Tip of the day: It seems a lot of you have been interested in how to remove unwanted programs from your Startup Folder, and if you’ve done so, you already know how to navigate to and open it. For today’s tip I’m going to use as an example adding Outlook Express, so that it will automatically open for you when you turn on your machine and start your day (simply substitute the program you use). Because if you’re like me, one of the first things you do is check your email…and you like to save steps and time. I will also show you a different way of navigating to the folder.

In the previous articles I told you that when you deleted programs from your Startup Folder you we not deleting the programs — merely shortcuts to the program. Today we’re going to add a shortcut.
In Windows XP, start by opening My Computer, either by Start >My Computer, or double-clicking the My Computer icon on your desktop. Now double-click the Local Drive (C:) icon, [you may get a window saying “these files and folders are hidden”. Just click on the “view these now” link.] and then locate and double-click the Documents and Settings folder.

docsett.jpg

If you wanted to make a change for all the users of your machine you would open the All Users folder. Since we are customizing the start-up behavior just for ourselves, we open the folder that matches our User Name — in this machine’s case, the folder named “Terry” (sharp-eyed, security-conscious types will notice that the Administrator account hasn’t been renamed on this machine — a “no no”.). Now we look for and open the Start Menu Folder. Open it and then open the Program folder, and finally, Startup.

DeskTp

As you can see, this User Account has no programs at all listed in its Startup folder. That doesn’t mean that no programs launch at boot. The programs I do want, (antivirus, firewall, etc.) I want to have run no matter who is using the machine, so they’re listed in the “All User’s” Startup folder.

In Vista, it is a little different: the Startup folder is listed in Programs, accessed from the Start button. Click Start >Programs and scroll down until you see the folder labeled Startup. Double-click it to open its contents window and drag your shortcuts into there.

Adding a program shortcut is easy, and it’s easiest if there is already an icon on the desktop (which is also a shortcut, btw). Simply right-click on the icon and drag it into the open Startup window, and let go. A menu will open: select “Create shortcut here”. And that’s it. You’re done.
If there isn’t a desktop icon, hover your mouse over the Start button, and then Programs. Now the list of all your programs appears. Again, simply right-click and drag the ones you want, as outlined immediately above. Now the next time you boot Windows, those programs will open for you automatically. A neat little trick.

Today’s free link: Trillion. For those of us who use Instant Messaging. This tool lets you combine your various IMs into a single “control panel”. From Website: “Trillian™ is a fully featured, stand-alone, skinnable chat client that supports AIM, ICQ, MSN, Yahoo Messenger, and IRC. It provides capabilities not possible with original network clients, while supporting standard features such as audio chat, file transfers, group chats, chat rooms, buddy icons, multiple simultaneous connections to the same network, server-side contact importing, typing notification, direct connection (AIM), proxy support, encrypted messaging (AIM/ICQ), SMS support, and privacy settings.”

Copyright 2007-8 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved.jaanix post to jaanix

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May 22, 2008 Posted by | advice, computers, e-mail, how to, PC, tech, tweaks, Vista, Windows, XP | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments