Need a good computer assistance forum

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Hi,
My #2 home-office computer is an obsolete but still useful 450 MHz PC
with Windows XP.  It has "crashed and burned" (software wise!) and I
have to put it back together again after an XP reload (I think I'll
rename in Humpty Dumpty!)

Can anyone point me towards a good computer forum where I can get
advice on free or shareware software and other IT help?  I've not
found a Usenet group that does this.

I need to get the following software types installed on the #2 PC
right away and need some recommendations:
1. Word Processor (I will mostly use MS Wordpad with .rtf files as I
don't do clever formatting, also Openoffice WRITER is an option for
when I'm sent MS Word files.)  But my wife still need a way to open
obsolete Wordperfect files (not sure our decade-old Corel Wordperfect7
CD will load under XP.)
2. Spreadsheet (OpenOffice CALC will suffice - it opens .xls  and .123
files)
3. Presentation grahics (liker Powerpoint, which I can't afford.)
Openoffice has IMPRESS - I've just made it work with a .ppt file,
that's a step forward!
3. Business card software recommendations (a Google search brings up a
lot of trial ones - which is best?)
4. IE for Internet (on XP CD)
5. Email - all on Rogers-Yahoo webmail so no problem.

Anyway, rather than burdon the good people here, is there a Windows XP
forum I can join to discuss all these questions?
Thanks and cheers,
Roger

Re: Need a good computer assistance forum
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http://www.techytopics.com /

Offline for a day or so for a refit, but the chatroom is open and the
guys there are helpful.

Ron(UK)


Re: Need a good computer assistance forum
On Wed, 22 Oct 2008 08:10:24 -0700 (PDT), Engineer

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Try alt.comp.hardware.pc-homebuilt for PC hardware questions.

Try microsoft.public.windowsxp.general or other groups in that
hierarchy for your software questions.

- Franc Zabkar
--
Please remove one 'i' from my address when replying by email.

Re: Need a good computer assistance forum
snipped-for-privacy@p58g2000hsb.googlegroups.com:

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www.daniweb.com

There's a spot there for questions like yours, and a whole bunch of
people who are happy to answer them.

FWIW, Office 2007 Student and Teacher Edition has Word, Powerpoint, and
Excel and is price at around $150.  It sounds like you make quite a bit
of use of those types of programs, so it's probably worth purchasing.  
Think of it as an investment.

Puckdropper
--
If you're quiet, your teeth never touch your ankles.

To email me directly, send a message to puckdropper (at) fastmail.fm

Re: Need a good computer assistance forum
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I've found expert help here: http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums /

-S

Re: Need a good computer assistance forum
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Here in the 21st Century,
learning to use a search engine is a useful skill:
http://groups.google.com/groups/search?q=ingroup:freeware

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Yup.

http://www.google.com/search?q=convert+WordPerfect&num10%0
Again, learning to use a search engine is a useful skill.

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Yup and yup.

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You will find the Boolean NOT operator to be useful.
http://www.google.com/search?q=Business.cards+GPL+-bootable+-CD+-Joomla+-Zimbra&strip=1

Anything that can retain the position of the stuff you put on the grid
will do for "page layout", no matter how small the "page".
Frankly, learning how to use a task-specific app for this seems
foolish.
OTOH, the general-purpose apps
OOo Draw, Inkscape, or Scribus (DTP) could do this.
All are GPL'd (gratis & libre).

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While you're moving toward free,
you could get (gratis & libre) Firefox or SeaMonkey.
(AdBlock, FlashBlock, NoScript, etc.
make surfing MUCH less annoying.)

Getting a Free Software operating system
is something to think about as well.  (Dual-boot to start?)
http://www.google.com/search?q=cache:CNeiS395cpgJ:https://shipit.kubuntu.org/+no.extra.cost+consider.downloading+request.CDs+registered+trademarks+FAQ+free.of.charge+delivery-may-take -*-*-*-*&strip=1

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SeaMonkey or Thunderbird.
..and Gmail allows you to use your local client.

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Puckdropper at dot wrote:
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That site appears to be for software/web developers.
I don't see a forum specific to any of the OP's topics.

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If that spot exists, it's not obvious.
A more specific link would have been nice.

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That's $150 too much for commodity software apps.

In addition, I don't understand why people buy M$ products;
that money will be used AGAINST you
as Micros~1 purposely makes their products incompatible
--not only with competing products,
but **with it's own previous versions as well**
The MSFT attitude is
*Screw you if you don't buy into our perpetual-upgrade treadmill*.

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Disagree strongly.
The OP has already discovered that most non-vertical apps
are readily available as gratis offerings (free as in beer).
When you include the freedom of GPL,
Free Software (not just "freeware") is a no-brainer.
http://www.google.com/search?q=cache:vYwHVQAGkr8J:en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_source_software+inc+software.libre+without.restriction+501+tax+not.the.same.as+free.from.onerous.licensing.restrictions+zero.price+Open.source.and.free.software&strip=1#Open_source_software_versus_free_software

If the OP hasn't discovered it yet, he will eventually find that
some documents generated with previous versions of M$ software
can't be opened with the current  version of M$'s software.
OTOH,
OpenOffice.org has a reputation for being able to open those files,
making it **more** M$-compatible than M$'s own apps
(depending on your definition of "compatible").[1]

OOo 3.0 (just released) also includes support for .docx, .xlsx, .pptx,
etc.
--MSFT's latest effort to (yet again) break compatibity.
.
.
[1]  A recent "update" to M$Office
sought to "cure" the problem of lousy backwards-compatibility
by disabling support for the old file formats.  8-|

Screw Microsoft.

Re: Need a good computer assistance forum
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Thanks for all the good replies!  Support URL's noted.
Since the OP I have downloaded (into #2 PC, my wife's) OpenOffice v2.9
(I think) and it (WRITER) not only opens Wordperfect but CALC opens
Excel spreadsheets and IMPRESS opens PowerPoint presentations (I have
a few) - presentations can also be created, useful.  BTW, I also
dumped the Norton suite from #2 PC as it seemed to be slowing things
down.  I loaded the free Avast! Home Version - working well so far. I
enabled Windows firewall, too.
I already have OO v2.4 (I think) on my #1 PC used for business - so
I'll upgrade that to v2.9, or later, and stick to it for all bus.
apps.  Virus/Spyware protection on #1 PC will stay as Norton since the
Avast! Home version is for only non-commercial use and I respect
that.  Fortunately, #1 PC (a 3.0 GHZ P4) runs Norton well with no
glitches and Norton was "free" (sort of, it's in the rent!) from my
ISP, Roger-Yahoo.
Cheers,
Roger


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