Questions and Answers #3

I wonder if you can help me with a niggling computer problem.I have created a letterhead as a template in Microsoft Word 2000 documents.The letterhead contains a picture in Windows bitmap format (.bmp).Every time I save a letter in this layout, I also have to save the picture as well.I initially discovered this problem when trying to save to floppy disk; to save one was feasible, but as soon as I tried to save a second the computer informed me that the disk was full.On further inspection, I found that the document saved consumed 759kb of floppy disk space: more than half the total available.I believe that the problem started when I first saved the picture for the letterhead in bitmap format, unaware that this file type is overly space-hungry.Having discarded the original drawing, I can’t easily start again from scratch, though perhaps this will be the only sensible course in the, I hope, unlikely event that you are unable to provide an answer.My irritating current solution is to delete the logo each time I save a copy a letter on floppy disk, and then the space used by the document is negligible.

I image that the problem of inappropriate wastage of disk space is not unusual among those of us less experienced computer users, and any method of conversion to leaner files that you are able to provide will also be helpful to others.

Keith West, Brixham

Having spent a large amount of time over the past years designing websites, I have come to appreciate exactly which is the best way to store graphics since fast download speeds on websites depend on small compressed files.First things first, it is definitely best to save the file as a Jpeg (.jpg) file since these are tightly compressed, resulting in small file sizes that will take little time to load.You can do this using the trail version of a program such as Paint Shop Pro (, simply open up your picture and then go to ‘file’ and ‘save as’, selecting Jpeg as the file type.

Once this has been done, there is a feature in Word 2000 that allows you to actually insert a link to the picture into your document as opposed to actually inserting the picture itself.Therefore you only need one copy of the picture that all of your letters can all refer to for use in the letterhead.This is achieved in the usual way of going to ‘Insert’ and ‘Picture’, ‘From File’ and then selecting the picture you want to import.Then, instead of clicking on ‘Insert’, click the little upside-down triangle to the right of it and then click on ‘link to file’.There you have it, your picture is shown in the Word document, but isn’t actually saved as part of it saving valuable space!

Please note that since the picture is linked to the document, if you save the document onto a disk, you will have to copy the picture file over using Explorer as well otherwise the document will have nothing to refer to.
I am quite new to computers; we bought one last year mainly for the children to use.  Ever since we have had it we have had a problem shutting it down after using it.  When you select shutdown from the start menu it gets to the shutdown screen and won’t go any further, so you have no choice but to turn it off at the switch, so that when you turn it back on the next time it says you didn't shut down properly.  I have been on to Gateway who we bought it from, they are very helpful but can’t seem to solve the problem.  I am wondering if can come up with any suggestions on how to overcome this annoying problem.

Mrs Karen Carthew, Via E-mail

The program that you are experience should be relieved with the help of a program I reviewed a couple of weeks ago in Click, Norton Utilities 2001, available for a free trial period from looking at your problem in more detail I will not be able to determine exactly what the problem is, however this program will check your hard disk and registry for any errors amongst other areas of your system configuration and will repair the problems that it encounters which should remove the error that is causing Windows to hang on shut down.Once you’ve downloaded Norton Utilities from the website given above, just install it and run System Check and take its recommendations on anything that it finds that is wrong with your computer.

If after 30 days you believe that the program isn’t worth the asking price (around £30) then just delete it off your hard drive from ‘add/remove programs’.

When I had Windows 95, all my favourites for the Internet automatically sorted themselves into alphabetical order. Now I have Windows Millennium, I am asked to put them in various folders which I don’t want to do, I just want to have them in alphabetical order.

How can I do this, please?

Rose Griffiths, Shiphay

With the new versions of Internet Explorer, you don’t have to put your favourites in to the different folders, although it does give you the option to.If you just ignore this option and save the shortcut anyway, once done click on ‘Favourites’ as you would usually do and right click on one of your saved favourites and click on ‘Sort by name’.This should have the effect you require!

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