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FAQs Frequently Asked Questions

Web FAGs
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Attention: This is the 4th major update, finalized in 2015.
Parts of the old site are still here. Please contact the webmaster if you are having difficulty.
Thank you for your patience.

This list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS) is designed to help those infrequent users who need a little prompting. For detailed personal tech support you have several options; ask a friend or coworker, call or email the appropriate supplier, search all the on line web sites, try a News Group dedicated to the subject in question, pay someone to solve your problem for you, or, if all else fails, read the manual (something especially abhorrent to Mac users). You can also contact me.

Every machine and software application has its own little quirks.
Finding and exploiting the quirks that are specific to your system is part of the challenge of being a computer user and "surfing the Web" like a Pro.

Please note: The suggestions provided are based on personal experience.

Stress Survival Tip: If you have gotten this far you must be doing something right. Congratulate yourself on the things you DO know before you start berating yourself for the things you don't. The rules I learned in my first grade-school cookbook still work very well when dealing with computers:
Take a deep breath, count to ten, and if that doesn't work, shut it off and leave it alone for awhile (both you and the machine may benefit from a chance to cool down).
No matter how much you want or need to solve the problem it isn't going to work till you can approach it with a calm, clear mind.

Table of Contents:
  Updating a web page Frames or no frames
  Bookmarks - Saving the location of a page Sending files with your e-mail
  Downloading Files and Pictures Receiving files in your e-mail
  Opening downloaded files and Pictures File "archive" formats

I have been working on Macs since just before the first Mac II came out in 1987. For nubies, that means I started in the late 80's with the pre-SCSI 512 Macs, back when Aldus PageMaker 1.0 AND the Mac OS fit on one 400K floppy (single sided 3.5") with space for a document or two... and when the Pro-DOS Apple Ii was still a well known option. I have worked on or supported most every Mac since. I'm currently using a MacBook Pro running under Mac OS 10.9, awaiting the release of 10.10 Yosemite.

When I first wrote this FAQ, Netscape was the most common Mac web browser. The Mac Operating System (OS) now provides it's own browser, Safari, which I use most of the time. I use FireFox when I run into a site that does not play nice with Safari.
[ Netscape was purchased by AOL in 1998 and incorporated into their proprietary web software. First introduced in 1994. The browser was once dominant in terms of usage share, but lost most of its share to Internet Explorer (introduced in 1995) during the first browser war. By the end of 2006, the usage share of Netscape browsers was less than 1%.]

I'm not a PC expert but I have enough experience with DOS, Windows (since 1.04), ProDOS, and UNIX to be comfortable troubleshooting unknown hardware/software situations. I've been the primary tech person in several studios and done User Interface Design (see my resume for more details). Thanks to RealPC or VirtualPC, I have had Windows versions through XP Pro running in emulation on many Macs over the years. Copy & Paste between the two platforms actually works better than converting files most of the time.
Windows emulation that Microsoft owns it don't work very well (go figure!) .... but there are other vendors now like Parallels and Fusion. As the newer Intel Macs run both systems in native mode you can use Apple's Boot Camp to literally divide your machine into separate sections and run any combination of OS you want, including UNIX. It not necessary to buy a separate Windows machine unless you want to. A recent CNET review found that a direct installation of Windows ran at the same speed or faster on the MacBook as it did on a similarly configured PC laptop.

For those using Internet Explorer on a Pentium-class, AMD or IntelCore machine running Windows or similar configurations, the information below should serve as a guide. Details and key combinations are program and platform specific. Links have been provided for PC utilities.

Web pages change over time. Most browsers have the ability to "cache" or save a copy of pages you visit so that the next time you visit you don't have to wait for the information to be downloaded again. This means you can view it faster but it also means that changes made since the last time you visited may not show up. Your browser preferences should be set to "check" the pages at least once during each session. If you suspect that a page has not been updated, use the Reload button to update it or, in browsers like Safari, use Option Reload to force a page refresh.

The images and data on this site are the property of Sandra ragan/plum grafik, clients thereof, and others as noted. Please respect their hard work and creativity by following the "Golden Rule,"
... do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

Webmaster: webmaster @ Thanks.

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