Readers' Forum - March 2005

from the March 2005 Actrix Newsletter

If you'd like to ask a question or request some help on any Actrix or Internet-related matter. Simply send me an e-mail with the word "Forum" in the subject line. I'll try and answer your question by return e-mail, and will also post the answer here for the benefit of others who may have a similar question or problem. By the same token, if you read something here and think you may have something to suggest, please feel more than free. Please also note that questions and answers may turn up under the Helpful Tips section on the Actrix home page (www.actrix.co.nz).

Maureen writes writes: This query may prove simple to fix but so far the solution is eluding me. With downloading various things I ended up with so many tool bars that I decided to delete some of them, e.g MSN, Yahoo and Google. I reinstated Google but somewhere along the line I also deleted the original one where it showed the URL of the web I was in and if I changed that (and I often did) there was a 'GO' button to press. I found it far more useful than the Google one but can you tell me how to get it back again please?

Hi Maureen, yes these tool bars in Explorer can disappear from time to time if settings are being altered and there's a slip of the old mouse (though sometimes they can disappear all by themselves for no apparent reason). Fortunately, it's reasonably easy to get back the default items that come with Internet Explorer. With Explorer open, if you click on View in the little menu at the top of the program, and then on Toolbars, you'll see that there are a number of toolbars that you can click on to turn on or off. If something you were used to has disappeared, try that, and while you're there, it's fairly safe to experiment with turning things on or off to see what happens. Anything with a tick next to it in the drop down menu should be visible. Anything without a tick can be clicked on to become visible.

Note, though, that this only applies to the toolbars that come by default with Internet Explorer. It doesn't refer to extra toolbars that you might have downloaded separately such as a Google Search Bar and so forth.

Graham writes: Hi, I'm using the free version of Spybot. When I'm in e-bay I get these notifications popping up advising me that Spybot S&D Resident has blocked downloads of "Double Click". Its a real nuisance because I have to click OK to proceed and sometimes there are several notifications between pages. I've looked in Spybot but can't see how to turn them off. Any suggestions? Cheers, Graham

Peter Cranston, from the Actrix Help Desk, replies: Hi Graham, The 'Resident Shield' used in version 1.3 of Spybot has an issue allowing certain cookies (specifically advertising cookies like Double Click, Tribal Fusion and others) when set to notify. If page loading becomes a problem, right click the tea timer icon in the Systray (bottom right of your screen, by the time), select “Resident IE” and either uncheck “Use Resident in IE sessions” or check "Block all bad pages silently". Unchecking “Use Resident in IE sessions” will disable some of the safety features of Spybot so if the only problem you have is the annoyance of having to click 'Ok' all the time (i.e: there have been no problems displaying the page after clicking 'Ok'), I would recommend just checking "Block all bad pages silently" first. I hope this helps.

Brian Ellis wrote: Hi Ed, I noted your reply to a question in the last newsletter concerning text size displayed for websites. What is not so readily appreciated however is that in Outlook Express (at least, I cant comment for other emailers) is that email text size when printed also seems to be controlled by the size set in IE. This is most annoying as it keeps changing from time to time without my intervention. Why is that? and why should IE control this as well as OE? Brian

Mike Cooper writes: Hi Brian, The seemingly random changes could be just that, or they could be accidentally changed by a keystroke, or by holding the control key down whilst using the mouse's scroll button. There isn't much you can do about the changes. As for IE controlling OE's print font size, that is a bit of a mystery. It's a known quirk, but why Microsoft have elected to leave it this way is beyond my reckoning. The only reason that springs to mind is that both IE and OE use the same HTML rendering engine, and they have only provisioned for one size setting between the two programs. All the more reason to begin exploring alternative browsers!

Hi Thank you for your wonderful informative news letters. I have Spybot Search & Destroy and Zone Alarm, plus Norton Antivirus. However I still seem to get the same one annoying pop-up which arrives every time I connect to the internet. I guess this is spyware and how can I get rid of it? Regards Leanne

Mike Cooper: Hi Leanne, Without seeing the pop-up in question or knowing the site it is loading itself from, I'd really be clutching at straws as to exactly what it is (and how to remove it). The first thing to check would be what you have set as your homepage. It might be that your homepage is the one generating the pop-up - it may be worth changing your homepage to something different to see if that resolves the problem - instructions for changing your homepage are available here: http://www.actrix.co.nz/help/browsers/ie5/sethomepage.php.

If that doesn't fix it, I would check to make sure that you have the latest version of SpyBot. SpyBot 1.2 is no longer updated, so make sure you do have SpyBot 1.3 - this can be obtained here: http://files.actrix.co.nz/show.php?id=12.

Failing that, you may like to try some other Spy/Adware removal tools:
CWShredder: http://cwshredder.net/bin/CWShredder.exe;
AdAware: http://files.actrix.co.nz/show.php?id=13;
Microsoft AntiSpyware (Windows 2000/XP only): http://www.microsoft.com/athome/security/spyware/software/default.mspx.

These may be able to remove some instances of SpyWare that SpyBot can't.