Excerpt from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Computer Basics, 5th Edition. I get calls all the time from friends, relatives, and colleagues who claim that a file they were working on mysteriously vanished. In about 1 percent of those cases, they're right – whatever file they were working on did vanish. Perhaps they didn't save [...]

The Complete Idiot's Guide to Computer Basics, 5th Edition Price: $19.95, February 2009, Penguin – Alpha Books Most introductory computer books focus on hardware – CPU, RAM, motherboard, hard drive, expansion cards, and other high-tech gear. The Complete Idiot’s Guide® to Computer Basics, Fifth Edition, takes an entirely different approach. It assumes computer users are [...]

My son called me from work, where he was having trouble printing out a checklist of daily tasks. The checklist was 4 pages long, but when he tried to print it, only a half page would print. He kept trying and trying, and every time he tried, the printer printed out the same half page. [...]

I've always considered computers to be odd creatures. One day, everything seems to be working just swell, and the next day, for no apparent reason, it slows to a crawl or refuses to do anything. Recently, however, I discovered just how strange computers can really be. My brother-in-law who happens to reside in Phoenix, Arizona [...]

I encountered a nagging problem with all the Windows PCs on my network. Sometimes, they’d run just fine. Other times, they’d slow to a crawl. What used to take only a few seconds for my computer to accomplish would now take several minutes. During my research, I found that several other people encountered similar problems. [...]

What Is Phishing?

Experienced computer users know what phishing is - any attempt to con users into handing over sensitive information, including usernames and passwords. However, many computer users still get fooled by phishing emails. To protect yourself, you need to know what a phishing email looks like. Here's a screen shot of one I recently received claiming [...]