UngersWeb Program Tips

Tips for purchasing computers, software and information on programs

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Office Programs

MS Office is a powerful tool. What can't it do? We have used it for years, I dont want to learn another program. If you dont want to spend the money there are other (free) Office Programs.

google Docs 1. Google Docs – This is probably the most heard of Office competitor that most people already know about. Google Docs is completely online and includes a web-based Word Processor, Spreadsheet application, and a Presentation app. Down Load Here

soho 2. Zoho – Zoho is probably the best online office productivity suite with not only word processor, spreadsheet and presentation apps, but also includes online project management, CRM solutions, web conferencing, online database with reports, online planner, group chat, wiki, and lots more. It also includes a plug-in for MS Office so you can work both online or offline. Learn more about Zoho. Down Load Here

think free office 3.Thinkfree – Thinkfree claims to have the best integration with Microsoft Office. Also, the interface for each app is very similar to MS Office including the toolbars, icons, and functions. Thinkfree also has advanced collaboration features such that users can share, edit, and contribute their ideas remotely. DownLoad Thinkfree. Down Load Here

ibm office 4. IBM Lotus Symphony – IBM Lotus Symphony is a direct competitor to the Microsoft Office suite because it is also a desktop application aimed at individuals and businesses. The suite consists of Symphony Documents, Symphony Presentations, and Symphony Spreadsheets.Down Load Here

staroffice 5.StarOffice – StarOffice is from Sun Microsystems and has recently been released under the Google Pack as a free download. StarOffice runs on Windows, Linux, and Solaris systems. You'll have to download OpenOffice if you want it for the Mac.Down Load Here

open office 6. OpenOffice – OpenOffice is a multi-platform (Win, Mac, Linux) and multi-lingual office suite which is compatible with all major office suites (i.e. Microsoft Office). It includes Writer (word processing), Impress (presentation), Math, Draw, Calc (spreadsheet), and Base applications. IBM Lotus Symphony and StarOffice are both based on the code from OpenOffice. Down Load Here

We hear that Adobe is planning on releasing it's own online word editor called Buzzword. Plus, Yahoo may be joining the crowd soon also with it's recent purchase of Zimbra. So if you're still stuck on Office, be sure to check out all the new alternatives as they will probably be the future of office productivity suites.

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Get Snippy

The snipping tool has also been around in various incarnations but it's even easier to use in Windows 7. Launch the tool, then drag and drop any part of your screen. The tool will snip the selection. You can save it as a graphic file or annotate with basic drawing tools. Teach your end users how to use this tool so they can grab the snapshots of their problems and send them to the help desk. Or create your own library of visual notes. To open the Snipping Tool click start and type snip in the search box then just click on Snipping Tool.

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Sticky Notes

Even though this feature has existed in previous versions of Windows in one form or another, it's much easier to use in Windows 7. You can stick a note on your desktop for quick reminders. It's a snap to change the font or note color. If you have a note selected, use Ctrl-N to create a new one. To open sticky note click start and type note in the search box then just click on Sticky Notes.

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Buying a Computer

Purchasing a home or business computer can be a big and sometimes costly decision. Here are some helpful suggestions on what to look for and what to ask when purchasing a new computer.


new vs. refurbished / used

Buying a used or refurbished computer can save you money. A refurbished computer is a computer that has been returned to the company has been checked out as good but cannot be sold again as new. All major computer manufacturers will have a refurbished section showing all their available refurbished products. Buying one of these computers instead of a new computer can save you hundreds of dollars.
In addition to refurbished computers individuals and companies for various reasons will also sell their used computers. When buying these look out for the following. Take a knowledgeable friend when shopping.
Verify it has no physical damage by inspecting the ports as well as the inside and the outside of the case.
Make sure you're getting what you pay for. See the below scams section for additional details.
Make sure computer comes with any CD's for the operating systems or programs that are promised to be installed.
Realize that many computer manufacturers will not transfer the computer warranty from the old user to you.

Scams

Watch out for these common scams.
Get what you pay for - Make sure you're getting what you paid for. A common tactic is to overclock the processor, memory, or other component. This can be done by anyone with a little computer knowledge. For example, you may buy a 733MHz processor but instead get a 500MHz.
To determine the processor speed, open the computer and look at the processor itself. Do not look at the processor through a software program or through BIOS as these values can be changed or tricked.
Legal software - When purchasing a computer, make sure it was legal purchased and the CD or other disc and its CD-KEY is included. Many end-users or small computer companies who build or sell computers may not provide you with legal copies of the software, which is illegal and may leave you with a fine or the inability to get updates.

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Macintosh vs Personal Computer

  Mac PC
Security When compared to any PC running Microsoft Windows all Apple Macintosh computers are much more secure and less vulnerable to viruses and other malware. The majority of people using computers today are running some version of Microsoft Windows and therefore most attackers target these computers and users first.
Price Although many may argue you get what you pay for, when compared to a PC an Apple computer and its peripherals are often much more than a PC. The vast majority of PC computers and their peripherals today are much cheaper and affordable when compared to a new Apple Macintosh computer.
Operating System The Apple Macintosh operating system is a much cleaner and stable operating system than all versions of Microsoft Windows, especially a new PC bundled with the manufactures software and drivers. Although Microsoft has improved its operating system with Windows 7 many PC manufacturers keep their prices low by bundling crapware with the computers. With this software and drivers made by dozens of different manufacturers the Windows Operating System can be less stable than the Mac.
Software Although the available software options for an Apple computer is increasing it's still nothing when compared to the software available for Windows computers. However, with Boot Camp an Apple user could still run Windows and many of its programs. More people are using and developing for PC computers running Microsoft Windows and therefore it has a much larger selection. In addition there is an almost endless supply of 100% free programs available today for the PC.
Quality The Apple Macintosh computers are often built with a lot better materials when compared with most PC computers. To help keep the overall costs low many PC manufacturers will build their computers from plastics and other cheaper materials when compared to a Mac.
Options When compared to a PC an Apple Macintosh has much less options for customization. PC computers are available in almost any imaginable configuration, color, size, etc. If you can think of something that's not available it's likely someone could still build it for you.
Boot time The boot time on an Apple Macintosh can be a lot less when compared to a Windows computer. PC computers have an operating system that is designed by Microsoft and hardware that's designed by dozens of different companies. Because of this and other factors the boot time can be greater than a Mac.
Upgrades Although many of the most commonly upgraded parts in a Macintosh can be upgraded, not everything is as easily upgradable as it is with a PC. In addition those parts that can be upgraded are often a lot more expensive. Pretty much every part within a computer can be upgraded in almost all PC computers. In addition because of the openness and competition between hardware vendors, parts are also often cheap and first available for the PC. Finally, if you plan on building your own computer the PC is the only way to go.
Drivers Much of the hardware and drivers are developed by Apple. Because of this you are less likely to encounter driver related issues. PC computers are often running hardware from dozens of different manufacturers and using dozens of different drivers. Therefore it's more likely you'll encounter driver issues then you would on a Mac.
Gaming Although many (but not all) game developers are releasing games for both the Mac and PC most of them still release their games and updates to the PC first. The PC is king when it comes to games and online gaming. All major games developed are released for the PC first. In addition PC users have the option of running higher performance video cards and getting the absolute best performance from their games.
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