Computer Stuff
 

On this site you will find general computer information and tips.  If you have any problems with this site or find that the information provided is wrong let me know in an email and I will consider it as soon as possible.

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DOS
DOS is a computer operating system that allows you to mange your files and run applications.  DOS means Disk Operating System and has several useful functions.  To open do if your using Windows 95 click on the star button then choose programs and choose the DOS prompt.   Then if you want it to be full screen click on the little icon that looks like a page with four arrows pointing out from the center on it or hold the alt key down and hit enter then alt enter again to go back to window form.  While in DOS case is not important for commands and copy, COPY, CoPY etc. will all be seen as the same command by DOS.  Unless it is a filename DOS generally ignores casing.
Dos store file in places known as directories.  A directory can be thought of as a place where common files and subdirecties are kept.  A sub directory is simply another directory within a directory.  Each Sub directory can contain further directories and files.  To change between directories you must type CD then the directory name e.g. CD myplace will take you to the myplace directory.  You must be in the directory that contains the sub directory that you wish to go to in DOS you may have to go through several directies to get to the one you want.
It is best to visualize this structure as a tree and you have to follow a branch through to get to the destination.  To return to the home Directory type CD \ and that will save you having to go back through each directory.  To go back one directory type CD ..   this will take you back one directory.

Commands;

Dir       - List the contents of the current directory
Tree     - shows the tree structure with all you directories branching off from their parent directories
CHDIR - Changes the directory
CD       - Change directory follow this by ..   e.g.  CD .. will take you back one menu
Format  -  Used to format a disk follow by the drive name e.g.  FORMAT A: will format the a drive follow the prompts to format the disk.  Remember when formatting you will loose all data on the drive you format and while there is a unformat command available in Windows you should still use the format command with caution
COPY (source) (destination/new nameif needed) - You can use the COPY command to make a copy of a file.  To copy a file type Copy filename(the file being copied) the destination(including path) e.g.  Copy attempt.txt a:\attempt.txt will copy the file attempt.txt to the a: drive.  With copy you can also rename the file e.g. Copy attempt.txt a:\rena.txt will copy and rename the fill attempt to the a: drive and give it the name rena.txt   .DOS will keep the original file under the original name so be careful when copying and renamimg you may end up with multiple copies of the same file and waste disk space.
COPYDISK - Will copy a disk exactly.  For example type COPYDISK A: A: will temporarily copy the disk in drive A to the hard disk then prompt you for another target disk and copy it exactly.  Hence you will get an exact replica of the original disk.  Type COPY (source disk) (target disk).

Another handy feature that Windows brings to DOS is when you use Explorer and the Dos window.  In the DOS window type the command e.g. Copy then find the file in Explorer and drag it onto the DOS window it will automatically display the name of the file along with its full path.  This is a handy way to ensure the path is correct and avoid mistakes.
DOS has allot more commands than these but the ones here are good ones to know.  DOS is slowly being replaced by other operating systems (mostly Windows95 and 98) but alot of DOS commands are still very useful.
There are heaps of other features within DOS the ones here are just the basics.  Most people use other operating systems now and DOS is slowly being replaced by Windows that is Microsoft have stopped producing new versions of DOS after 6.22.  Even though they obviously have improved it they include DOS in Windows now and no longer produce just DOS on its own.  You can still get DOS 6.22 in the shops but it can be hard to get.



Windows
Like DOS windows is also very sophisticated and has alot more features than are included here but here are some handy features.  Generally I will be referring to Windows 95 (Windows 98 uses very similar methods) though believe it or not some people still use Windows 3.1 although it becoming less popular.
Shortcut    -  To create a shortcut to an application use something like Explorer or My Computer and right click the file name and choose create short cut then either drag and drop it onto the desktop or cut and paste it again by right clicking the mouse.   You can access the related application by clicking on the shortcut.
File Management   -  Windows offers alot of ways to copy files, delete file, create directories etc.  You can use either Explorer or My Computer.  Directories are called folders in Windows and you can create them pretty easily by clicking on the file menu at the top left of the screen.


HTML Code

<FONT COLOR=color> Text </FONT>  will change the colour of the text according to whatever colour you entered.  You can use colours like blue, green, red, white etc.
<BOLD> Text </B>   Will make the text bold.
<CENTER> Text </CENTER>   Will center the text.
<UNDERLINE> Text </U>   Will underline the text.
<BLINK> Text </BLINK>    Will make the text blink.
 
If you want to know more codes right click your mouse (if using Netscape) and choose view source this will show the html code for whatever web page your on.  Experimentation will quickly show what various codes do and how to use them.
While you can appreciate there are alot more HTML commands available but this is a good start.



Web Talk and Tips

Surfing the net is probably the most common computer use around most people that own a computer have access to the internet and have at least some experience with the World Wide Web.

World Wide Web
Is a collection of readily accessible sites and web pages devoted in a wide range of topics and forms.  Most URL's include www. in the address this means they are on the World Wide Web.  The World Wide Web is commonly called the internet by most people.

URL
A URL is like an address for a web site e.g  http://www.hotmail.com   .  There is alot of information held in an URL for example most URL's will end in one of these things and here are what the mean;

.com     - company or a bussiness
.au        - Australian or in Australia
.org      - organisation
.htm      - a HTML document
.html     - a HTML document

This is a general guide and usually pretty correct but you may find some variation on the internet.



DESIGNING A WEB PAGE

Creating a web page is a relatively easy task and you can probably create a basic page pretty quickly even without fully understanding any computer lingo at all.  First of all web pages are written in various languages the most common being HTML and JAVA.  It is relatively easy to get html codes from the internet including the link I have included here.  This link will provide you with access to more than enough reading about html and java to get you started and also some more advanced topics.
The easiest way to create a web page is to use a web editor.  There are numerous type and brands around but in general web editors are similar to word processors only with web page related commands.  To get a web editor go to http://www.coffeecup.com and download the trial version.  Netscape also has a very good Page Composer feature.
If you have Netscape Communicator click on the Communicator menu at the top of the screen and select Page Composer.  Then start creating your page using the different fonts etc.  The icon menu's are easy to use and once you play around a bit you can learn them pretty quick.
To include a link just click on the link icon and fill out the text and then the link details including the http://www  bit or the file name etc.  To insert a picture click on the image icon and put in the file name and then click on the picture and reissue it.
Once your happy with your page save it and remember the name of the file.  You might want to create a new folder in Windows Explorer to put your web page files in for easy finding.  Then you have to publish the page onto a web site.  Your service provider may give you web space for this use or you can go to http://www.tripod.com or http://www.angelfire.com or some similar site that gives free web space for non business activities.  Then create an account and follow the instructions.
Now you have to upload your page and any files you have linked or images etc.  If your using Netscape you can upload directly (usually) or you will have to use an ftp and transfer the files that way.  Sounds harder than it actually is.  Just follow the instruction of whatever web space provider your using each one is a bit different but you will learn it quick enough.  Don't be afraid of doing something wrong because you will always have the file in your computers memory so you can't loose it doing this.  Just remember once you upload the file anyone can access it if they know the name of where it is.  Also remember to upload all images and files that are included in your page.  Check the links and the name of the uploaded files are the same including casing.  If not rename the files or change the links.
Then once your page is uploaded you have a web site.  Your web space provider will tell you the URL of your files and your page.  Anyone going to that URL will see your page.  You can later delete it or change its name if you like.
This sounds quite complicated but it isn't that hard to do.  Basically you create the page, upload it, upload any related files and record the URL for future reference. I mean if I can do it anyone can *smile* .



This site is designed to be an introduction to the various topics.  There is alot more information and command available for each topic but if I included them all here i simply wouldn't be able to complete the site.  Anyway if I missed anything important and or have put incorrect information here let me know in an email and I will fix it as soon as possible.  Also let me know any good links or information I should include here I am always looking to improve this site and any suggestions will be greatly appreciated.  Thanks.

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This site is still under construction so it may be a little rough at the moment but I am endeavoring to improve it in time.


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