Questions and Answers #2

This week I will answer some of the mail that I have been receiving recently in the hope that it will resolve a number of problems that my readers have been having with their computers.

Dear Chris,

I would like to produce a “Family Tree” but need the relevant data first, is there any way I can trace my ancestors via Births, Deaths & Marriage Registries.

I would like to go backward starting with my parents or grandparents but find myself going round in circles; any help or comments from yourself would be appreciated.

Mr. D. Miller, Paignton

I have had a good look around for any information that would help you with this, Derek.The number one resource for you to look at would be at the Internet site page gives a complete guide to tracing your ancestors, whatever country they resided in.However, as a starting point – say for example you wanted to trace English ancestors, you should click on ‘RootsWeb’s Guide To Tracing Family Trees’ and then click on ‘English’ to bring up the guide for searching records in England.

If you are looking for a good program to use to compile and display all the information that you discover then try the site

Dear Chris,

Since switching to Windows 98, my computer always goes into “Hibernation” and ignores my settings in its ‘Power Settings’ program. This would be O.K. but it prevents other scheduled programs including my anti-virus program from starting automatically!

Sean Talbot, location unknown

To me it seems that the power settings are being determined by the settings included in your system BIOS (Basic Input Output System).To change these settings press ‘delete’ repeatedly when you first turn on your computer until a menu comes up giving a list of settings that you can change to determine how your computer is set up.Use the arrow keys to go down to power settings and hit enter, then find the settings for power management and turn them all off.Press ‘Escape’ until you get back to the main menu and to go ‘Exit saving settings’.Please don’t try changing any other BIOS settings as doing so may cause undesirable effects on your system.

Dear Chris,

We use 'Libertysurf' as our Internet server; recently they sent us a letter asking us to amend our e-mail settings.

In our 'Server Settings' we inserted the word mail - For example:
SMTP now reads
POP3 now reads

Fine we did that, but we forgot to click on the second part, send and receive.Consequently we cannot send e-mails using Libertysurf!

Also Outlook Express will not launch any more so we cannot get into the settings to put the problem right!

We have spoken, several times, to the Libertysurf help line but they do not seem able to advise us on how to put the problem right.

We are hoping you can help.
Chris Avery, Location Unknown

Just very briefly, not clicking send and receive wouldn’t have upset your Outlook Express settings, however, your e-mail doesn’t appear to be working for some reason or another and so, in your present situation I would be tempted to remove Outlook Express completely and then re-install it and set your libertysurf e-mail settings from scratch.To do this first make a note of your e-mail user name and password and then click on ‘Start’ and ‘Settings’, go to ‘Control Panel’ and then ‘Add/Remove Programs’.Select Outlook Express from the list and then click on ‘Add/Remove’.

Once uninstalled, grab any CD with Internet Explorer 5 on it (for example a recent Libertysurf disk) or download it from and do a custom set-up, choosing only to install Outlook Express and nothing else.Once set up go back into your account settings and enter in your SMTP and POP servers, your user name and password.Click on ‘Ok’ and you should be ready to start sending and retrieving e-mail again.

Please note that in my experience your e-mails and address book are retained through this process, however I would recommend that you back them up from the file menu in Outlook Express before you follow any of the instructions above.

I hope this has clarified the situation for the three readers above and hopefully thought those of you at home learnt something that you didn’t already know.


About the Author - Chris Holgate works for Refresh Cartridges who supply a wide range of printer cartridges at the UK’s lowest prices.