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Dec 25, 2008

Cleaning Registry


How to Clean the Registry

In the beginning Windows' registry consisted of two files totalling around 5mb in size. Today it consists of at least 12 files with the Software file itself being 30mb or bigger in size. As the size of the registry has exploded, so has the trash and clutter in it. It may seem like a daunting task, but cleaning the registry properly can fix system problems, speed your computer up, and make it run more efficiently. I have spent many years developing and refining thousands of procedures to do just that. I could share these methods of hunting down the trash with you and let you find them and delete them by hand, but if you were to sit down at your computer right now and work nonstop, you would still be busy with them a week from now when the next issue of Ray's Computer Tips arrives. By then your registry would have new clutter and you would have to start all over again. To make registry cleaning easier on everyone, I wrote a program called RegVac Registry Cleaner (http://regvac.com/regvac.htm) to perform those procedures. It has been so successful that several companies have asked me to model their registry cleaners after RegVac and even more have copied processes that first debutted in RegVac. The first place RegVac cleans is the HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT section (the Classes Vac in RegVac does this). This section contains settings for the classes of Windows. Think of a huge box full of snakes and you will get an idea of how complicated and interwoven it is. It is so complicated that many registry cleaners bypass it or simply perform surface scans of it. RegVac uses over a hundred processes to follow each tentacle of each class deep into this area and make sure that they abide by the rules. Next RegVac validates the entries in 22 lists with 7 different methods (the FilesList Vac does this). This is a minor part of RegVac but the bulk of most other registry cleaners even though they usually do not clean all 22 lists. Another part of RegVac, the Software Vac, which is unique to RegVac, finds old software sections in the registry and provides a way to remove that software's entire branch. Other registry cleaners only remove a few entries in this area often leaving huge portions of the registry that do nothing but take up space and get in the way. Even more trash can be discovered in hundreds of stashes used to store data you will never use. Most registry cleaners do not even touch these. The Stash Vac lists these stashes and lets you go through and select which ones to empty out. Please use caution when using the Stash Vac because some of the items listed there may be important. For example, one folder in the Stash Vac lists places where data for international keyboards are stored. You probably will never use the data for Bulgarian keyboards, so you can remove it, but if you live in the US you may experience problems after removing the United States 101 keyboard. The items that you can safely remove are usually obvious. Last but not least, when cleaning the registry, you should look for broken links to files on the computer (this is what the Bad Link Vac does). If a file is referenced in the registry but it does not exist on your hard drive, that is a good indicator that something is wrong. Many programmers start out writing a registry cleaner thinking all it has to do is check for these broken links and remove them. In fact, that is all many registry cleaners do. Even though that is all they do, they often don't do it correctly. If you check the results of such scans, you will find out that many of the broken links are really good links. I spent several months refining this part of RegVac so that as far as I know it is 100% accurate. Despite this, please realize that some software enter broken links in the registry and require them to be there in order for them to run. RegVac skips the ones it knows about, but you still need to be careful with this part of RegVac. RegVac has six more tools that clean even more areas: the Add/Remove Editor, the System Config Utility, the OpenWith Editor, the AutoComplete Editor, the Junk Keys Editor, and Registry Backup, Pack, and Restore. Many of you already use RegVac but if you don't, you can downloaded a free 30 day trial of RegVac at http://regvac.com/regvacz.exe. For more information about RegVac Registry Cleaner go to http://regvac.com/regvac.htm. If you like RegVac, you can purchase it for only $29.95. All future updates are free. Keep the Windows registry clean and running smoothly with RegVac Registry Cleaner.

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Cleaning Printer


How to Clean a Printer


Does your printer have frequent paper jams? Does it put ink where ink shouldn't be? Is the outside of your printer dirty or covered with smudges? If so, it is time to clean your printer. First, there are some general rules that apply to cleaning just about any electrical device. It is best to turn off the printer before cleaning it.
Do not spray water or cleaner on or in the printer. Instead wet the rag with it and clean the printer with the rag.
Different types of printers require different cleaning methods. So if you can get your hands on cleaning instructions for your make and model of printer, do so and follow them. Unfortunately, many manufacturers only make that kind of information available to their licensed technicians. In that case, you are stuck with these instructions, so read on.
Open up your printer and take a look. If you have an ink jet printer and there is an ink mess inside, clean it up with wet paper towels. If you have a printer that uses toner either vacuum or blow it out. Some toner, especially color toner, can be harmful to you, so only use a vacuum with a micro-toner filter or blow and run.
Figure out where the drum is (it is shiny and larger in diameter than the rollers) and do not touch or scratch it. If you do, the scratches will turn up as marks on every paper that you print and will require that you replace the drum (not a cheap option) to fix it.

Examine the path that the paper takes through the printer. Clean all of the rollers (but on a toner printer, not the drum or rollers near the drum and watch out for the rollers after the drum because they may be hot). It may take some disassembly and/or contorting of your arm to get to some of the rollers.
Access is not always easy. The most important rollers to clean are the ones which pick up the paper from the paper bin and transfer it into the printer. If these rollers are dirty or bad, they will cause consistent paper jams.
The rollers are made of either hard plastic or rubber. All of the rollers can be cleaned with water or rubbing alcohol. If the rubber rollers have deposits that you can't get off, you can use harsher cleaners but be careful because those cleaners can damage the plastic rollers and parts. To clean a roller, wipe across the roller with a wet rag, rotate the roller, and wipe again. Do this until you have worked your way all the way around the roller.
Look at the rag. If it has been blackened by the roller, move to a clean part of the rag and clean the roller again.
Once everything is clean on the inside, close it up and clean the outside. Wipe off the case and each of the buttons or knobs.
If there are staples or paper clips sitting on it or wedged in the cracks, remove them and throw them away.
Other areas of the printer can be cleaned but to do so, you will have to either get training and special tools or leave it to a trained professional.

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Dec 21, 2008

Cleaning Mouse


How to Clean your Mouse


If your mouse is working sluggishly or not at all, don't go out and buy another cheap mouse. The cause is probably just a dirty mouse. A quick cleaning could fix the problem.

First, you need to identify which kind of mouse you have. If you turn your mouse over and part of a ball is showing, you have a ball mouse. If you see a lens, you have an optical or laser mouse. Each type of mouse requires a different type of cleaning.

The optical or laser mouse does not need to be cleaned near as often as the ball mouse, but it and the surface it runs on can still get dirty. If you do not clean the surface that the mouse moves on, it will soon turn black. So about once a month or so, wipe the surface off with a wet rag. The lens probably never will get dirty, but if it does, take a soft cloth, cotton swab, or q-tip wetted with window cleaner or alcohol and clean the lens.

The ball mouse may need cleaning quite often, so you should get well acquainted with the following cleaning procedure. The dirtier the ball mouse gets, the harder it is to get it to move the cursor on the screen smoothly. If you have to move the mouse across the mouse pad several times to get the cursor to move halfway across the screen, it needs to be cleaned.

The mouse does not need to be disconnected to clean it, but you should close all of the programs that are running, so that you don't accidentally click on something and mess it up. If you do decide to disconnect the mouse, be sure to turn off the computer first. The mouse cord should never be unplugged from the computer while it is running. Doing so could ruin your motherboard.

Turn the ball mouse over and find the cover that holds the ball in. Look for arrows on the cover to show which way it needs to be turned. Place two fingers on the cover and push in the direction of the arrows. Once the cover has been turned about an inch, cover it with your hand and turn the mouse back over to the upright position. The ball and cover should fall into your hand. If it doesn't, shake the mouse gently.

Wipe the ball off with a wet rag.


Now look in the ball well and find the three rollers. Start by cutting across the buildup on the rollers with your fingernail (a knife or steel dental pick may also be used gently), then turn the roller and remove the buildup as you go along. If you do this correctly, you will end up with one curled strip of buildup for each roller. Make sure to remove the buildup from the well. If it falls inside somewhere, blow and gently shake it until it comes out.

Take a wet rag and clean each of the rollers by wiping across it, then turning it and wiping again. Continue until the entire roller is cleaned. Put the ball back in the ball well and lock the cover back in place.

If the mouse still has problems once it is assembled, try cleaning it again. If that doesn't work, you may need to buy a new mouse.

It is a good idea to regularly clean the surface that the mouse is on because the cleaner the surface, the less dirt will get inside the mouse and the less often you will have to clean it.

If your mouse is shared by many people (especially if one of them is sick), you may want to disinfect the top of the mouse between users.

Follow these instructions and your mouse will be up and darting again in no time.

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Training Course

Computer Training Course

There are several types of computer training course available to the person seeking to learn about computers today. In fact, the whole arena of computer training can be so intimidating that it is good to take your time in selecting what courses you are wanting to take. In this article, we will examine the outline of a computer training course that would appeal to the computer newbie.
This course outline is not meant to be all inclusive, nor is it meant to be professional advice for someone looking to enter into the computer technology field.
It is simply a broad outline of which subjects are suggested, and in what order, for someone to learn about computers. That being said, let's take a look at our suggested computer training course.

To start, it would be a good course of action to look at classes teaching the basics of how to operate a computer. Information for this computer training course should include things like the basics of using an operating system, how to save information on a hard drive, floppy drives (although they are quickly becoming obsolete), and CD / DVD ROM drives.
It is a good idea in the computer training course to also learn some basics about the internal operation of the computer (i.e., what makes it tick, how it works).
It may seem like it is best to leave information on how the memory works and what RAM actually stands for to the professionals ...
however, this would be a mistake.


It is important even for the average home computer user to understand some of these basics, as it will impact how they use the computer and their expectations of performance under certain work loads and software compatibilities, among other things.

Moving on from the basics, a computer training course should teach more advanced concepts as well. Some of these concepts would include back-up procedures, file maintenance, and data recovery. Security issues are also on the rise, with the increased usage of the Internet, and safeguarding your computer against viruses and other attacks should also be covered in a computer training course. All of these are items that the average computer user should be aware of how to operate. Just knowing this information can save you in the long run from calling that professional for a service call that could literally cost you as much as the computer did in the first place!

Last, but certainly not least, every personal computer user should learn how to install and replace the basic plug-and-play circuit boards or cards that are in every personal computer. A computer training course would simply not be complete without this information. There are many parts that are truly user-replaceable, but unless you know how, you will end up paying that tech big bucks for a simple part swap. Things like that newest video card, an upgraded modem card, installing a firewire card, network card or extra USB port card are very simple.

Unfortunately, unless you are selective in your outline of courses, many basic computer training courses will fail to train you in these aspects of computer maintenance.

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Clean Motherboard


How to clean your Motherboard



If you have not done the inspection mentioned in the previous article - How to Clean your Case, now is the time to do so. Look at the blades of the fan in the back of the computer. Also look at any vents. Is there clusters of dust there? Is there grime caked on to it? If so, the inside needs to be cleaned. If the fan blades are clean but it has been several years since you have cleaned the motherboard or if the computer is around cigarette smoke, it probably should be cleaned anyway.
Dust and particles in the air (like cigarette smoke) can build up on the circuitry of the motherboard and cause it to heat up and/or corrode.
The first thing that you need to do is unplug your computer. Then open up the case to get access to the motherboard.
Cases open differently. If you don't know how to open your case, look on the back of your computer along the edge for some screws. These screws may hold on side panels or an upside down U shaped panel that covers the sides and top. Removing the screws will allow you to take off the cover.
Other cases have the screws on the front of the computer. To get access to these screws, you must first remove the front panel by pressing a hidden latch. The cover is there to give easy access to the inside of your computer, so if you look hard enough, you should be able to figure out how to remove it.

Remember that if you touch anything on the motherboard, you should be grounded by either touching the metal frame of the computer with your other hand or by wearing a special grounding device.
The goal of cleaning the motherboard is to remove all dust and debris from the motherboard and all components inside of the case. This can be done using one of three methods. The preferred method is to use a can of compressed air to blow it out.
Always hold the can in an up-right position to prevent the propellent chemicals which can damage or corrode components from coming out. Dust and dirt should be blown away from the motherboard and out of the case.
Another way to remove dust is to use a vacuum.

The common advice is to only use a battery operated vacuum because an AC powered vacuum causes static and static can ruin the motherboard. I have used an AC powered vacuum (before I knew that it was not recommended) to clean my motherboard many times and it has never caused any problems, but I may have just been lucky.
When using the vacuum, keep the nozzle a couple of inches away from the motherboard or any other components so that it does not come in contact with them and so that any small parts are not sucked into the vacuum.

If you do not have a can of compressed air or a vacuum, you can use a dry cloth and brush to clean the motherboard. Be careful not to dislodge or break anything using this method.
While cleaning the motherboard, be careful not to unplug any cables or connections or to dislodge any loose components, such as, jumpers.
Methodically clean the whole inside of the case going over all of the motherboard from one end to the other and all other components.
Don't forget to clean the fans and heat sinks. Do not open up the power supply box or stick anything in it beyond the fan. If you do, you could get a shocking surprise and ruin your computer.
If your computer does not work when you put it back together, something was obviously dislodged during the cleaning.
Open the case back up and push all connections and cards into their slots. Look for anything that may have become disconnected.
Cleaning the motherboard is probably the most dangerous form of cleaning but it is necessary to prevent an early death of your computer.


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Dec 20, 2008

Computer Training

Computer Training

Is not the matter of fact that you are working in an organization related to the field of technology or advancement but its becoming a basic necessity for every person who is in the practical field of competition .not matter which type of job you are doing computer skills and knowledge about who to use this machine in simple way is becoming a serious issue. Work in a modern organization cannot be changed without a change in a technology environment and that change drives the need for computer training

.


The basic purpose of computer training programs is to guide the people that they can use the computer in their daily routine while doing their jobs and performing their tasks. To accomplish that goal training must be performance oriented and job specific and it must not be expected to stand on its own. The training is basically one of the major tools for an organization through which it gains competent users and cream from the talent.

Computer training classes give professionals an edge in the ever changing business world. New software releases come out yearly and technology changes in an instant. Yesterday’s computer skills are obsolete. Stay ahead of the pack by taking a computer training class.

The ability to use a personal computer and related technologies is rapidly becoming an absolute necessity for employment in virtually every industry.

From the retail industry to the manufacturing industry to health care and insurance, computer literacy is becoming an important prerequisite to employment, and those who lack such literacy often find themselves left out in the cold when employment decisions are made.

Even many jobs that previously did not require the use of a computer now do, and basic computer training is becoming an absolute necessity for those who need to gain these important skills.

There are of course many important aspects that should be covered in any basic computer trining course

, including the features and benefits of the Microsoft Windows XP operating system, the use of Internet Explorer, Netscape and competing web browsers, and of course the operation of the computer itself. It is important for those seeking to update or enhance their job skills to seek out such basic computer training, and to ensure that such training addresses their needs. As computers become more and more a part of our basic lives, the importance of such training is likely to only grow.


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Dec 16, 2008

Guide RSS Aggregators

A Guide to RSS Aggregators

One of the most popular features of Internet portals, websites, pages and even emails is a frame that features an organized list of news headlines and periodic updates from other web sources. Really Simple Syndication, formerly “Rich Site Summary” or simply, RSS makes this possible.

Most users visit a lot of websites whose content continually change, such as news sites, community organization or professional association information pages, medical websites, product support pages, and blogs. As Internet surfing became an intrinsic part of business and leisure, it became important to get rid of the very tedious task of repeatedly returning to each website to see updated content.

RSS easily distributes information from different websites to a wider number of Internet users. RSS aggregators are programs that use RSS to source these updates, and then organize those lists of headlines, content and notices for easy reading. It allows computers to automatically retrieve and read the content that users want, then track changes and personalize lists of headlines that interests them.
The specially made computer programs called “RSS aggregators” were created to automatically find and retrieve the RSS feeds of pre-selected internet sites on behalf of the user and organize the results accordingly. (RSS feeds and aggregators are also sometimes referred to as "RSS Channels" and "RSS Readers".)

The RSS aggregator is like a web browser for RSS content. HTML presents information directly to users, and RSS automatically lets computers communicate with one another. While users use browsers to surf the web then load and view each page of interest, RSS aggregators keeps track of changes to many websites. The titles or descriptions are links themselves and can be used to load the web page the user wants.

RSS starts with an original Web site that has content made available by the administrator. The website creates an RSS document and registers this content with an RSS publisher that will allow other websites to syndicate the documents. The Web site also produces an RSS feed, or channel, which is available together with all other resources or documents on the particular Web server. The website will register the feed as an RSS document, with a listed directory of appropriate RSS publishers.

An RSS feed is composed of website content listed from newest to oldest. Each item usually consists of a simple title describing the item along with a more complete description and a link to a web page with the actual content being described. In some instances, the short description or title line is the all the updated information that a user wants to read (for example, final games scores in sports, weblogs post, or stock updates). Therefore, it is not even necessary to have a web page associated with the content or update items listed -- sometimes all the needed information that users need would be in the titles and short summaries themselves.

The RSS content is located in a single file on a webpage in a manner not very different from typical web pages. The difference is that the information is written in the XML computer code for use by an RSS aggregator and not by a web user like a normal HTML page.

There are 2 main parts that are involved in RSS syndication, namely: the source end and the client end.

The client end of RSS publishing makes up part of the system that gathers and uses the RSS feed. For example, Mozilla FireFox browser is typically at the client end of the RSS transaction. A user’s desktop RSS aggregator program also belongs to the client end.

Once the URL of an RSS feed is known, a user can give that address to an RSS aggregator program and have the aggregator monitor the RSS feed for changes. Numerous RSS aggregators are already preconfigured with a ready list of RSS feed URLs for popular news or information websites that a user can simply choose from.

There are many RSS aggregators that can be used by all Internet users. Some can be accessed through the Internet, some are already incorporated into email applications, and others run as a standalone program inside the personal computer.

RSS feeds have evolved into many uses. Some uses gaining popularity are:

•For online store or retail establishments: Notification of new product arrivals
•For organization or association newsletters: title listings and notification of new issues, including email newsletters
•Weather Updates and other alerts of changing geographic conditions
•Database management: Notification of new items added, or new registered members to a club or interest group.

The uses of feeds will continue to grow, because RSS aggregators make access to any information that individual users like more convenient and fun.

In the mean time, Good Luck on your journey to success…

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Dec 15, 2008

Mentor IT

Mentoring In IT

This article is also available as a "The Sniffer Guy" podcast on iTunes.

ATTENTION AMERICAN IT MANAGERS: Within the next decade most of your best people will retire or die. Your senior staffers are baby boomers with twenty years or more of experience in their field. They built the systems: they learned the operating systems as they were created: they know what they know from real life experience that cannot be learned in school. They are also somewhere between their late forties and early sixties. They rose to the top while competing within the largest workforce America has ever seen. When they leave they will take a level of efficiency and expertise with them that will take twenties years to replace.

To make matters worse, the population of appropriately educated Americans coming up behind them is far smaller than the population getting ready to move out. Do the math. Start now. To try to buy that talent later will not only cost you a fortune but you will be competing for a very small population of such individuals, with the entire world.

In this corporate environment where everyone is disposable and so much work is done by contractors so that companies can avoid having to make a commitment to personnel, it is far too easy to miss this growing danger. Business Managers may have learned this—but probably not. However, IT managers usually have not had much exposure to this concept. They live in a world of projects that staff up for the project and then disband. How to you bring up the next crop of leaders in such an environment? This is going to take far too many companies by surprise! But IT is going to be hit much harder than most other departments. I know of no other area of corporate life that is so project oriented. In the IT world, you build a team and disband it a few months later--even when they do outstanding work. All in the name of avoiding long term cost. It also avoids long term success.

There is also an emotional and psychological component to this problem. After the Dot-Bomb debacle, many people with decades of smarts were kicked out due to layoffs, or companies failing, or being eaten by a bigger company that had its own staff. Why do we eat our seed corn? Those that survived are still concerned about it happening again. And it could. It makes them conservative. Possibly even a tiny bit timid and less likely to share their knowledge freely. I don't blame them. Because our corporate mentality is to cut the expensive people and replace them with contractors—that we can easily get rid of when the job is done. What a vote of no confidence! This is considered to be a strategy. OK…I will accept that. It is a strategy. But it is a very short sighted one. Where is the mid-range planning?

So, what do you do? In this article and podcast, let us restrict our focus to Mentoring. Future articles and podcasts will explore other activities that are also proven and available.

Do you have a mentoring plan in place? I don't mean the typical, "oh, we believe in mentoring around here" kind of plan. I mean a thought out purposeful plan whereby you determine which journeyman IT personnel have the potential to grow into those senior roles and have your baby boomer senior staffers truly mentor them to bring them along. I doubt it. It does exist; I know of a few such companies. But it is rare.

Part of the problem for those that want to create a mentoring program is that it is not so simple to identify candidates. Let me help with that. Not everyone is a candidate for mentoring and few people are cut out to be mentors. It's sad but true. Don't spin your wheels and exhaust your enthusiasm backing the wrong plan and/or individuals. You need to have some way to identify in whom you want to invest. And, please understand, it is an investment. You will invest money but not only money. You will invest the time of very busy and critical people. That will hurt a bit—but you don't really have any choice. If you are responsible for future planning in your organization, ignoring this process is irresponsible.

Here is a handy way to help make these determinations. A friend once told me that he had learned in a sales course at IBM, decades ago, about a concept that went something like this—and I may be mangling it so please forgive me. It was not meant for IT or Mentorship purposes, but I have adapted it.

There are four levels of competence. They are listed in order from least capable to most capable in performing their job. Oddly, this does not represent the order in which they are most effective in a mentoring program.

- Unconsciously Incompetent
- Consciously Incompetent
- Consciously Competent
- Unconsciously Competent

UNCONSCIOUSLY INCOMPETENT: This person doesn't know that they don't know. They are not a candidate for this program—but may need help in learning to learn.

A famous story about Thomas Edison says that he used to test fresh new Engineers who wanted to work for him by putting them in a lab with a very unique and oddly shaped glass container. He would tell them to figure out the internal volume of the container. One time he watched a new graduate work out the problem by measuring all the diameters of the odd twists and turns of the glass and carefully making the calculations on his slide rule. When he presented the answer, Edison said, "You got the right answer, but I can't give you the job." The young man asked why and Edison responded by picking up the container, filling it with water and pouring into a graduated beaker, getting the answer in ten seconds. He said, "Son, I am glad you know the answer, but I'm afraid you just don't know the question." The Unconsciously Incompetent person does not know the question.

CONSCIOUSLY INCOMPETENT: This person knows that they don't know and is probably working to get better. They are a junior person with potential. Such an individual bears watching—and possibly a little testing. Don't make it something too hard, but it should be a little scary, something that makes them stretch. See what happens. This is a good candidate to groom for middle management and in future years, senior management.

CONSCIOUSLY COMPENTENT: This is where the high performers stand. They will be in middle to senior management already. These people are two-for-one sales, all by themselves. They are both someone to be seen as a candidate to RECEIVE mentoring—for senior management—and the ideal person to PROVIDE mentoring for the Consciously Incompetent candidate. They have a high level of skill and consistently perform very well.

This person knows what they are doing, and remembers learning how to do it. They are not as capable as the Unconsciously Competent person. Nevertheless, they know what they know and they know how to transfer it to someone else--if they are motivated and are not afraid of losing their own place. If they know that they are part of something stable and long term and can afford to create their replacement—they are who you need. Because that is exactly what you want them to do. You want them to create their own replacement. You want them to bring up someone that will ask management for less, has a longer run in front of them and to know that they are not committing financial suicide by doing so.

Not all people in this category will make good Mentors as communication skills and a desire to teach are critical components to performing well in the role. I know many individuals who are extremely skilled and have the sort of knowledge that is transferable—but who could never serve this role with someone successfully. You need to keep other variables in mind.

- Communication Skills
- A temperament that tends toward explaining what they are doing, rather than keeping things "close to their vest."
- Good people skills

The people that will make the best Mentors are already doing it. They are respected by their peers as someone that is very free with their knowledge. They are just informal about it as there is no real structure. Find those people and give them a mandate, the time and some guidance and they will do a wonderful job for you.

UNCONSCIOUSLY COMPENTENT: The highest level. This person doesn't even know why they are so good anymore. Everything is so effortless that it is unconscious. This is the best you can get and you may only meet a handful of people like this in your career. Don't touch this person! There are two very good reasons why.

1) They are not replaceable or reproducible. They really are unique. Give them whatever they want to keep them doing what they do and don't distract them!

2) The other reason to keep them away from a mentoring program is because they make terrible mentors. They have no idea how they are doing what they are doing. They just do it--better than anyone else. But, they can't teach what they themselves don't really understand. Treat them as the gift that they are and get out of their way. Additionally, the probable failure in their attempt at mentoring will mess with their confidence. You don't want that.

There is a lot written on mentoring techniques, so I will not belabor the point. You, the IT Managers, may not have the authority or sense of security to set up this sort of program. I understand. However, if you want to do it and you have the authority, it isn't really hard to begin. There is a lot of material already in publication about various approaches. This is not a new concept. Available resources will probably not be specifically IT management related, but you can apply their lessons. My goal in this article is not to present something you have never heard of before. Rather, it is to remind you of what you already know--and to demonstrate how critical it has become to use that information.

Projects are also an opportunity. If you allow less capable people to work with more capable people, or more accurately, tag along, relationships can be created. Make the project oriented nature of our industry, which is its
greatest weakness in this regard, become a new strength.


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Operating System



Operating Systems: File Systems



File systems are an integral part of any operating systems with the capacity for long term storage. There are two distinct parts of a file system, the mechanism for storing files and the directory structure into which they are organised. In mordern operating systems where it is possibe for several user to access the same files simultaneously it has also become necessary for such features as access control and different forms of file protection to be implemented.

A file is a collection of binary data. A file could represent a program, a document or in some cases part of the file system itself. In modern computing it is quite common for their to be several different storage devices attached to the same computer. A common data structure such as a file system allows the computer to access many different storage devices in the same way, for example, when you look at the contents of a hard drive or a cd you view it through the same interface even though they are completely different mediums with data mapped on them in completely different ways. Files can have very different data structures within them but can all be accessed by the same methods built into the file system. The arrangment of data within the file is then decided by the program creating it. The file systems also stores a number of attributes for the files within it.

All files have a name by which they can be accessed by the user. In most modern file systems the name consists of of three parts, its unique name, a period and an extension. For example the file 'bob.jpg' is uniquely identified by the first word 'bob', the extension jpg indicates that it is a jpeg image file. The file extension allows the operating system to decide what to do with the file if someone tries to open it. The operating system maintains a list of file extension associations. Should a user try to access 'bob.jpg' then it would most likely be opened in whatever the systems default image viewer is.

The system also stores the location of a file. In some file systems files can only be stored as one contigious block. This has simplifies storage and access to the file as the system then only needs to know where the file begins on the disk and how large it is. It does however lead to complications if the file is to be extended or removed as there may not be enough space available to fit the larger version of the file. Most modern file systems overcome this problem by using linked file allocation. This allows the file to be stored in any number of segments. The file system then has to store where every block of the file is and how large they are. This greatly simplifies file space allocation but is slower than contigious allocation as it is possible for the file to be spread out all over the disk. Modern oparating systems overome this flaw by providing a disk defragmenter. This is a utility that rearranges all the files on the disk so that thay are all in contigious blocks.

Information about the files protection is also integrated into the file system. Protection can range from the simple systems implemented in the FAT system of early windows where files could be marked as read-only or hidden to the more secure systems implemented in NTFS where the file system administrator can set up separate read and write access rights for different users or user groups. Although file protection adds a great deal of complexity and potential difficulties it is essential in an enviroment where many different computers or user can have access to the same drives via a network or time shared system such as raptor.

Some file systems also store data about which user created a file and at what time they created it. Although this is not essential to the running of the file system it is useful to the users of the system.

In order for a file system to function properly they need a number of defined operations for creating, opening and editing a file. Almost all file systems provide the same basic set of methods for manipulating files.

A file system must be able to create a file. To do this there must be enough space left on the drive to fit the file. There must also be no other file in the directory it is to be placed with the same name. Once the file is created the system will make a record of all the attributes noted above.

Once a file has been created we may need to edit it. This may be simply appending some data to the end of it or removing or replacing data already stored within it. When doing this the system keeps a write pointer marking where the next write oparation to the file should take place.

In order for a file to be useful it must of course be readable. To do this all you need to know the name and path of the file. From this the file system can ascertain where on the drive the file is stored. While reading a file the system keeps a read pointer. This stores which part of the drive is to be read next.

In some cases it is not possible to simply read all of the file into memory. File systems also allow you to reposition the read pointer within a file. To perform this operation the system needs to know how far into the file you want the read pointer to jump. An example of where this would be useful is a database system. When a query is made on the database it is obviously ineficient to read the whole file up to the point where the reuired data is, instead the application managing the database would determine where in the file the required bit of data is and jump to it. This operation is often known as a file seek.

File systems also allow you to delete files. To do this it needs to know the name and path of the file. To delete a file the systems simply removes its entry from the directory structure and adds all the space it previously occupied to the free space list (or whatever other free space management system it uses).

These are the most basic operations required by a file system to function properly. They are present in all modern computer file systems but the way they function may vary. For example, to perform the delete file operation in a modern file system like NTFS that has file protection built into it would be more complicated than the same operation in an older file system like FAT. Both systems would first check to see whether the file was in use before continuing, NTFS would then have to check whether the user currently deleting the file has permission to do so. Some file systems also allow multiple people to open the same file simultaneously and have to decide whether users have permission to write a file back to the disk if other users currently have it open. If two users have read and write permission to file should one be allowed to overwrite it while the other still has it open? Or if one user has read-write permission and another only has read permission on a file should the user with write permission be allowed to overwrite it if theres no chance of the other user also trying to do so?

Different file systems also support different access methods. The simplest method of accessing information in a file is sequential access. This is where the information in a file is accessed from the beginning one record at a time. To change the position in a file it can be rewound or forwarded a number of records or reset to the beginning of the file. This access method is based on file storage systems for tape drive but works as well on sequential access devices (like mordern DAT tape drives) as it does on random-access ones (like hard drives). Although this method is very simple in its operation and ideally suited for certain tasks such as playing media it is very inneficient for more complex tasks such as database management. A more modern approach that better facilitates reading tasks that arent likely to be sequential is direct access. direct access allows records to be read or written over in any order the application requires. This method of allowing any part of the file to be read in any order is better suited to modern hard drives as they too allow any part of the drive to be read in any order with little reduction in transfer rate. Direct access is better suited to to most applications than sequential access as it is designed around the most common storage medium in use today as opposed to one that isnt used very much anymore except for large offline back-ups. Given the way direct access works it is also possible to build other access methods on top of direct access such as sequential access or creating an index of all the records of the file speeding to speed up finding data in a file.

On top of storing and managing files on a drive the file system also maintains a system of directories in which the files are referenced. Modern hard drives store hundreds of gigabytes. The file system helps organise this data by dividing it up into directories. A directory can contain files or more directories. Like files there are several basic operation that a file system needs to a be able to perform on its directory structure to function properly.

It needs to be able to create a file. This is also covered by the overview of peration on a file but as well as creating the file it needs to be added to the directory structure.

When a file is deleted the space taken up by the file needs to be marked as free space. The file itself also needs to be removed from the directory structure.

Files may need to be renamed. This requires an alteration to the directory structure but the file itself remains un-changed.

List a directory. In order to use the disk properly the user will require to know whats in all the diretories stored on it. On top of this the user needs to be able to browse through the directories on the hard drive.

Since the first directory structures were designed they have gone through several large evolutions. Before directory structures were applied to file systems all files were stored on the same level. This is basically a system with one directory in which all the files are kept. The next advancement on this which would be considered the first directory structure is the two level directory. In this There is a singe list of directories which are all on the same level. The files are then stored in these directories. This allows different users and applications to store there files separately. After this came the first directory structures as we know them today, directory trees. Tree structure directories improves on two level directories by allowing directories as well as files to be stored in directories. All modern file systems use tree structore directories, but many have additional features such as security built on top of them.

Protection can be implemented in many ways. Some file systems allow you to have password protected directories. In this system. The file system wont allow you to access a directory before it is given a username and password for it. Others extend this system by given different users or groups access permissions. The operating system requires the user to log in before using the computer and then restrict their access to areas they dont have permission for. The system used by the computer science department for storage space and coursework submission on raptor is a good example of this. In a file system like NTFS all type of storage space, network access and use of device such as printers can be controlled in this way. Other types of access control can also be implemented outside of the file system. For example applications such as win zip allow you to password protect files.

There are many different file systems currently available to us on many different platforms and depending on the type of application and size of drive different situations suit different file system. If you were to design a file system for a tape backup system then a sequential access method would be better suited than a direct access method given the constraints of the hardware. Also if you had a small hard drive on a home computer then there would be no real advantage of using a more complex file system with features such as protection as it isn't likely to be needed. If i were to design a file system for a 10 gigabyte drive i would use linked allocation over contigious to make the most efficient use the drive space and limit the time needed to maintain the drive. I would also design a direct access method over a sequential access one to make the most use of the strengths of the hardware. The directory structure would be tree based to allow better organisation of information on the drive and would allow for acyclic directories to make it easier for several users to work on the same project. It would also have a file protection system that allowed for different access rights for different groups of users and password protection on directories and individual files.Several file systems that already implement the features ive decribed above as ideal for a 10gig hard drive are currently available, these include NTFS for the Windows NT and XP operating systems and ext2 which is used in linux.

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Dec 14, 2008

10 Step For Speed Up Windows XP


10 Simple Ways To Speed Up Your Windows XP

1. Defrag Disk to Speed Up Access to Data
One of the factors that slow the performance of the computer is disk fragmentation. When files are fragmented, the computer must search the hard disk when the file is opened to piece it back together. To speed up the response time, you should monthly run Disk Defragmenter, a Windows utility that defrags and consolidates fragmented files for quicker computer response.

* Follow Start > All Programs > Accessories > System Tools > Disk Defragmenter
* Click the drives you want to defrag and click Analyze
* Click Defragment


2. Detect and Repair Disk Errors

Over time, your hard disk develops bad sectors. Bad sectors slow down hard disk performance and sometimes make data writing difficult or even impossible. To detect and repair disk errors, Windows has a built-in tool called the Error Checking utility. It’ll search the hard disk for bad sectors and system errors and repair them for faster performance.

* Follow Start > My Computer
* In My Computer right-click the hard disk you want to scan and click Properties
* Click the Tools tab
* Click Check Now
* Select the Scan for and attempt recovery of bad sectors check box
* Click Start


3. Disable Indexing Services

Indexing Services is a little application that uses a lot of CPU. By indexing and updating lists of all the files on the computer, it helps you to do a search for something faster as it scans the index list. But if you know where your files are, you can disable this system service. It won’t do any harm to you machine, whether you search often or not very often.

* Go to Start
* Click Settings
* Click Control Panel
* Double-click Add/Remove Programs
* Click the Add/Remove Window Components
* Uncheck the Indexing services
* Click Next


4. Optimize Display Settings


Windows XP is a looker. But it costs you system resources that are used to display all the visual items and effects. Windows looks fine if you disable most of the settings and leave the following:

* Show shadows under menus
* Show shadows under mouse pointer
* Show translucent selection rectangle
* Use drop shadows for icons labels on the desktop
* Use visual styles on windows and buttons

5. Speedup Folder Browsing

You may have noticed that everytime you open My Computer to browse folders that there is a little delay. This is because Windows XP automatically searches for network files and printers everytime you open Windows Explorer. To fix this and to increase browsing speed, you can disable the “Automatically search for network folders and printers” option.

6. Disable Performance Counters

Windows XP has a performance monitor utility which monitors several areas of your PC’s performance. These utilities take up system resources so disabling is a good idea.

* Download and install the Extensible Performance Counter List (http://www.microsoft.com/windows2000/techinfo/ reskit/tools/existing/exctrlst-o.asp)
* Then select each counter in turn in the ‘Extensible performance counters’ window and clear the ‘performance counters enabled’ checkbox at the bottom button below


7. Optimize Your Pagefile

You can optimize your pagefile. Setting a fixed size to your pagefile saves the operating system from the need to resize the pagefile.

* Right click on My Computer and select Properties
* Select the Advanced tab
* Under Performance choose the Settings button
* Select the Advanced tab again and under Virtual Memory select Change
* Highlight the drive containing your page file and make the initial Size of the file the same as the Maximum Size of the file.


Windows XP sizes the page file to about 1.5X the amount of actual physical memory by default. While this is good for systems with smaller amounts of memory (under 512MB) it is unlikely that a typical XP desktop system will ever need 1.5 X 512MB or more of virtual memory. If you have less than 512MB of memory, leave the page file at its default size. If you have 512MB or more, change the ratio to 1:1 page file size to physical memory size.

8. Remove Fonts for Speed

Fonts, especially TrueType fonts, use quite a bit of system resources. For optimal performance, trim your fonts down to just those that you need to use on a daily basis and fonts that applications may require.

* Open Control Panel
* Open Fonts folder
* Move fonts you don’t need to a temporary directory (e.g. C:\FONTBKUP?) just in case you need or want to bring a few of them back. The more fonts you uninstall, the more system resources you will gain.


9. Use a Flash Memory to Boost Performance

To improve performance, you need to install additional RAM memory. It’ll let you boot your OS much quicker and run many applications and access data quicker. There is no easiest and more technically elegant way to do it than use eBoostr (http://www.eboostr.com).

eBoostr is a little program that lets you improve a performance of any computer, powered by Windows XP in much the same way as Vista’s ReadyBoost. With eBoostr, if you have a flash drive, such as a USB flash thumb drive or an SD card, you can use it to make your computer run better. Simply plug in a flash drive through a USB socket and Windows XP will use eBoostr to utilize the flash memory to improve performance.

The product shows the best results for frequently used applications and data, which becomes a great feature for people who are using office programs, graphics applications or developer tools. It’ll surely attract a special attention of laptop owners as laptop upgrade is usually more complicated and laptop hard drives are by definition slower than those of desktops.

10. Perform a Boot Defragment

There's a simple way to speed up XP startup: make your system do a boot defragment, which will put all the boot files next to one another on your hard disk. When boot files are in close proximity to one another, your system will start faster.

On most systems, boot defragment should be enabled by default, but it might not be on yours, or it might have been changed inadvertently. To make sure that boot defragment is enabled:

* Run the Registry Editor
* Go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Dfrg\BootOptimizeFunction
* Set the Enable string value to Y if it is not already set to Y.
* Exit the Registry
* Reboot


Hope you find these 10 tips useful. Have a nice day!


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Clean Your Case


How To clean your Case     

 
There is nothing wrong with leaving spills, dirt, and stains on your computer
case. After all isn't that what the case is for, to protect the electronic components inside from spills and dirt? This is true, but there are still parts of the case that need to be cleaned and checked if you want your computer to live a long and prosperous life. 

Unless you like looking at dirt everytime you look at your
computer, you should go ahead and clean those spills, stains, and dust off of the case. You can do this with just about any cloth and cleaner. Do not use highly abrasive cleaners that might ruin or mar the surface and do not use solvents on plastic. A wet sponge will even work. Just make sure that the cleaner or any liquid does not seep into the inside through cracks and vents. If there is any possibility that you are going to get that messy, turn off and unplug the computer first and wait to turn it back on until any liquid has had a chance to fully dry. 

After you have wiped off the outside, it is time for a little inspection. Look at the blades of the fan in the back of the
computer. Also look at any vents. Is there dust there? Is there a lot of dust and grime caked on to it? If so, that is an indicator that the inside also needs to be cleaned (I will tell you how to do that in next week's article - How to Clean your Motherboard)

Some clean environments never have to have the inside cleaned. Some need it cleaned monthly. When I lived in Russia, even though I didn't notice it, the air was not clean. The fan on the
computer would cake up with dirt and grime after about a month of use. And so I would have to clean the fan, vents, and inside monthly. If I had let it go for several months without cleaning, the fan would have stopped working and the computer would have overheated. Where I now live in the US, the air is clean and I have gone years without having to clean it. Again, the indicator of this is the blades of the fan and the vents. If they are dirty, they need to be cleaned. 

You can do some of the cleaning from the outside. First, turn off the
computer. Then get out the vacuum sweeper and using the hose, vacuum out the vents and the fan(s). If you have compressed air (you can purchase compressed air from your computer store), you may want to blow air in through the vents (or intake fan if you have one) to loosen the dust and suck it out using the vacuum. If there is still dust or dirt in the vents or on the blades of the fan, you can use a Q-tip to clean them. 

If you do not have a vaccum, you can use compressed air alone. Always use short bursts to avoid moisture buildup. Start with the
computer off and blow into every hole and vent. Then turn the computer on and blow everything except for the exhaust fan once again. 

With the case clean, your
computer will look nicer and with the fan and vents cleaned out it will breathe easier and run cooler.


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Dec 12, 2008

Clean Keyboard - Part 2

How to Clean your Keyboard-Part 2


When it comes to cleaning your keyboard there are many methods that can be used, some harder and more effective than others.

The easiest method is the Shake Method. It is so easy that you can do it right now. Pick up your keyboard, turn it over being careful not to press any keys, and shake it. See all of that stuff fall out? It is dirtier than you thought, isn't it? You can use one of the following methods to clean it further.

The Blow Method - You can buy cans of pressurized air at the computer department or computer store which are made especially for cleaning your computer. They usually have either a hose and nozzle or a tube extending from the nozzle. Hold the keyboard up vertically (that means that end of the keyboard is up and the other end is down), aim towards the keys and press the button. Keep blowing until all of the debris is blown out. Be sure to get around and in between all of the keys. This can be done with the computer on, but it is better if it is off so that you do not have to worry about pressing the keys and coming up with a page of aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa's.

The Vacuum Method - This is just like the Blow Method except that a vacuum is used instead of a can of pressurized air. It is quite simple. Just turn the vacuum on, pull out the hose, and run the nozzle over the keys. Before doing this make sure your keyboard does not have any loose pop off keys that could be sucked into the vacuum.

The Cotton Ball Method - This can be done in addition to the above methods and in lieu of the following methods. Take a cotton ball or cloth and wet it with rubbing alcohol. It should not be so wet that the alcohol runs down into the cracks of the keyboard. Wipe the tops and sides of the keys.

The Dishwasher Method - I hesitate to tell about this method because there is the possibility that it could fry your keyboard. When I had less experience with computers, I dunked my keyboard in a sink full of water to clean it. It did work afterwards, so I don't doubt those who say this method will not mess up your keyboard, but if it does, don't complain to me. I warned you. If your keyboard is not the standard membrane type of keyboard or if it is on a laptop, do not even think of trying this.

This is how you do it. Unplug the keyboard and place it face down in an empty dishwasher. Do not disassemble the keyboard and do not put it in a dishwasher that has dirty dishes in it. Some say to add soap, some say not to. Run the dishwasher through a regular cycle. Take the keyboard out, shake the water out, and stand it on end until it is completely dry (this may take several days). If it does not work after doing this, it may not be dry. Let it stand another week and try it again. If it still does not work, I warned you.

The Disassembly Method - This is the most thorough method, but it should not be done on laptop keyboards or non-standard non-membrane keyboards.

Turn off the computer and unplug the keyboard. Turn the keyboard upside down. You may want to get two books or short boards to place the keyboard on. Position them so that they hold up the keyboard on the edges when it is turned over. This should leave the keys dangling and not touching the books or the floor. This is especially needed when the keyboard's back is off; otherwise the keys will be lifted out of their position by the floor (or whatever surface it is laying on).

Get a screwdriver and remove all of the screws from the back of the keyboard. Lay the keyboard down on the books and carefully remove the back.

Take everything apart and clean thoroughly. It is better to take the keys out one at a time and clean them so that you do not put them back in the wrong place. Wipe each one down with a wet cloth and then with a dry cloth. Any keys that may be hard to put back in, can be cleaned in place without removing them. Wipe around the keys as they sit in place and blow any debris out with your lungs (using compressed air or a vacuum may upset the keys). If you are really brave, you can remove all of the keys at once and give the frame a good wipe down too.

Do a once over and make sure that you have cleaned everything. Then reassemble it all.

Don't forget the keyboard's cable. Wrap a wet cloth around it and wipe it down. It may have an accumulation of grime that needs to be scrubbed off. Also if any of the letters on the keys have rubbed off, you can use a fine point permanent marker to draw the letter back on the key.

Use these cleaning methods and your keyboard will last a long time and be something you can be proud of.


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Clean Keyboard - Part 1


How to Clean your Keyboard- Part 1


I know most of you will not heed this advice, but KEYBOARDS CAN MAKE YOU SICK (how's that for tactfulness?). Germs live on your hands and fingers. When you type, many of them jump on to the keyboard. When someone else types on your keyboard, those germs transfer to their fingers. Or when you later type on the same keyboard, those germs reconquer your fingers. Regularly disinfecting the keyboard can prevent this.

To disinfect the
keyboard, turn off the computer. Then spray disinfectant on a cloth. Be sure to use disinfectant and not just any type of cleaner because not all cleaners disinfect. Also do not spray the disinfectent directly on the keys. Spray it on the cloth. Wipe down the top and sides of the keys. Give the keys a few minutes to dry off before turning the computer back on.

Now that you know how to do it, you should make it a regular practice to disinfect the keyboard. It's one step towards a healthier you.

So you have your keyboard disinfected and life is great. Then your child spills koolaide all over it. What do you do? There are certain steps that you should take when something, like pop, beer, wine, coffee, milk, or kool-aide, is spilled on the
keyboard.

The first thing to do is immediately unplug the
keyboard from the back of the computer and turn the keyboard over so that its keys are down. This will allow the liquid to drain out. You will probably want to put a cloth under the keyboard or at least make sure that the surface you have put it on is washable.

Then use the mouse to shut down Windows and turn off the
computer (this is important because later you will have to plug the keyboard back into the computer and you should never plug any device into a computer while it is on).

While the
keyboard is upside down use a cloth to dry as much of the liquid off as you can. If you have a can of compressed air or a vacuum, while the keyboard is upside down blow or vacuum it out. Then let the keyboard set upside down for at least a night so that it can adequately dry out.

If the liquid that spilled on it was sticky, you may want to follow the extensive cleaning procedure explained in the next article,
How to Clean your Keyboard - Part 2.

Liquid spilled on a laptop keyboard can easily reach the hard drive, so turn it over immediately and leave it in that position until it dries.

Keyboards are quite resilient and so it should work when you turn it on again. But if not, another attribute of keyboards is that they are cheap and so it won't cost too much to buy another one.

With these pointers in mind and a quick reaction, you just may save your keyboard from total destruction the next time it gets coated with coffee.



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Guide RSS Tool

A Guide on RSS Tool

RSS is an abbreviation that has evolved into the following, depending on their versions:

• RDF Site Summary (also known as RSS 0.9; the first version of RSS)
• Rich Site Summary (also known as RSS 0.91; a prototype)
• Really Simple Syndication (also known as RSS 2.0)

Today, RSS stands for 'Really Simple Syndication', and it has the following 7 existing formats or versions:

• 0.90
• 0.91
• 0.92
• 0.93
• 0.94
• 1.0
• 2.0

RSS tools refer to a group of file formats that are designed to share headlines and other web content (this may be a summary or simply 1 to 2 lines of the article), links to the full versions of the content (the full article or post), and even file attachments such as multimedia files. All of these data is delivered in the form of an XML file (XML stands for eXtensible Markup Language), which has the following common names:

• RSS feed
• Webfeed
• RSS stream
• RSS channel


They are typically shown on web pages as an orange rectangle that usually has the letters XML or RSS in it.

RSS feeds can be used to deliver any kind of information. Some of these 'feeds' include:

• Blogs feed - each blog entry is summarized as a feed item. This makes blog posts easier to scan, enabling 'visitors' to zoom in on their items of interest.

• Article feed - this alerts readers whenever there are new articles and web contents available.

• Forum feed - this allows users to receive forum posts and latest discussion topics.

• Schedule feed - this allows users (such as schools, clubs, and other organizations) to broadcast events and announce schedule changes or meeting agendas.

• Discounts or Special feed - this is used to enable users (such as retail and online stores) to 'deliver' latest specials and discounted offers.

• Ego or News Monitoring - this enables users to receive 'filtered' headlines or news that are based on a specific phrase or keyword.

• Industry-specific feed - used by technical professionals in order to market, promote, or communicate with current (and prospective) customers and clients within their specific industries.

RSS feeds enable people to track numerous blogs and news sources at the same time. To produce an RSS feed, all you need is the content or the article that you want to publicize and a validated RSS text file. Once your text file is registered at various aggregators (or 'news readers'), any external site can then capture and display your RSS feed, automatically updating them whenever you update your RSS file.

RSS tools are useful for sites that add or modify their contents on a regular basis. They are especially used for 'web syndication' or activities that involve regular updates and/or publications, such as the following:

• News websites - as used by major news organizations such as Reuters, CNN, and the BBC.
• Marketing
• Bug reports
• Personal weblogs

There are many benefits to using RSS feeds. Aside from being a great supplemental communication method that streamlines the communication needs of various sectors, RSS tools and feeds can also have tremendous benefits in your business, particularly in the field of internet marketing.

RSS tools and feeds provide Internet users with a free (or cheap) and easy advertising or online marketing opportunity for their businesses. Below are some of the RSS features that can help make your internet marketing strategies more effective.

1. Ease in content distribution services. With RSS, your business can be captured and displayed by virtually any external site, giving you an easy way to 'spread out' and advertise them.

2. Ease in regular content updates. With RSS, web contents concerning your business can now be automatically updated on a daily (and even hourly) basis. Internet users will be able to experience 'real time' updates as information in your own file (such as new products and other business-related releases) is changed and modified simultaneously with that of the RSS feeds that people are subscribed to.

3. Custom-made content services. With RSS, visitors can have personalized content services, allowing them total control of the flow and type of information that they receive. Depending on their interests and needs, visitors can subscribe to only those contents that they are looking for (such as real estate or job listings).

4. Increase in (and targeted) traffic. With RSS, traffic will be directed to your site as readers of your content summary (or 1 to 2 lines of your article) who find them interesting are 'forced' to click on a link back to your site.

These are just several of the many things that you can do with RSS. The possibilities are endless, and they are all aimed at providing you with an effective internet marketing strategy for your business.

In the mean time, Good Luck on your journey to success…

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