Is your A-V program doing its job properly
by George Skarbek - July 5

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Computer Guide

Q: Is my antivirus program working? Following the recommendation in an article of yours in the paper, I have installed AVG AntiVirus to replace my expiring TrendMicro PC-Cillin on Windows XP. How do I know if it is working? There's no indication of its existence that I can find on my PC, no icon etc.

A: There should be an icon, but to determine if the program is running, open the Task Manager and look at the processes running. In XP, most antivirus programs run as a process. To bring up the Task Manager, either right-click on an empty part of the taskbar and select it from the pop-up menu or press Alt+Ctrl+Del then click on Processes and then click on the Image Name heading to sort them by name. If AVG is running, you should see three programs that start with AVG.

The only real way that you can determine if it is working correctly is to have someone send a harmless anti-virus test file. See: for more details. You can also ask a friend e-mail you a real virus or insert an infected CD or floppy. AVG should then find the infected files, test or real.

Q I would like to know how to add a program to the start-up menu so that it starts automatically, rather than preventing it. I am running Windows XP.

A: The easiest way to make a program start on booting is to drag a Shortcut of that program into the following folder: C:\Documents and Settings\Your name\Start Menu\ Programs\ Startup. The only trap is to not drag the actual program as it will then not run if you click on it from the Programs menu because it will have been moved.

Q: I have tried to transfer a music track from a CD to my SD card reader by dragging it across in Windows Explorer. It shows up as being present on the E-drive portable device but it won't play. I thought my SD reader may be faulty but was told today that the reader can't read CD language and that I must convert the CD language to MP3 language. Is that right?

A: You are correct. The format that is used to play the music on a CD is different to that used in the MP3 format and it must be converted before copying it to your MP3 player.

The main reason for this is that the MP3 format can compress the sound file to about 10 per cent of the size it occupies on the CD. A 650 MB music CD can hold just over an hour of music, but you can have three or four hours of music on a 128 MB player.

To convert your CDs you can use Windows Media Player 10, which is a free download from the Microsoft site. There are also many other programs that you can find by searching in Google or see: for a selection of free software.

Q: I've been trying to find out how to make a horizontal line through a word I've deliberately misspelt, so that the misspelt word remains in place, e.g. if I deliberately type these five words - sinney . . . oops I mean sydney - how can I now type a horizontal line through sinney leaving all five words in the same place on the page . . . also, will the solution work in Outlook Express as well as Word/WordPad?

A: This is done by using a strikeout font. From Word, highlight your text and then click on Format, Font (or Ctrl+D) and select Strikethrough under Effects.

This method also works in WordPad but Outlook Express does not appear to have this capability. Outlook does have this. However, if you cut and paste the strikeout text into Outlook Express, it will send it correctly.

Q: Can you tell me how to make an index list of items on a CD so as I can put contents on a CD cover? I have highlighted the index, clicked on save but it comes out with icons, not in order also the actual files on the CD.

A: As you have not stated what program you use to create the CD cover, I can only give you a general solution.
Use a file listing program such as the free File List Generator from to insert into the program you use to create the CD cover. This program can sort the list into any order that you need.


To look at the book, Computer Guide, based on these columns click here