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From the Actrix Online Informer April 2009

by Rob Zorn

Readers' Forum April 2009

If you'd like to ask a question or request some help on any Actrix or Internet-related matter. Simply send us an e-mail with the word "Forum" in the subject line. I'll try and get an answer to you by return e-mail, and will also post the answer here for the benefit of others who may have a similar question or problem. By the same token, if you read something here and think you may have something to suggest, please feel more than free. Please also note that questions and answers may also turn up under the Helpful Tips section on the Actrix home page (www.actrix.co.nz).

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Dave writes: Hi Rob, I have recently upgraded my computer and now I don’t have any Internet or email anti virus program. In the past I have had expensive commercial ones but over the last three years have tried free downloads e.g. AVG and Nod 32. Both I found to be successful.

As I am a Senior citizen I ask my younger friends and workmates for advice. Their consensus of opinion is that these days, Servers have very good filters in place to stop spam and viruses etc. and my friends don't use anti virus programs. I have always been with Actrix and found you guys very helpful. Please advise me of your antispyware and the protection Actrix as our Server gives me against viruses and spam etc. Kind regards, Dave.

Hi Dave, Thanks for your kind words. Actrix has very good virus scanners on its mail servers and these are kept up-to-date fastidiously. However, new viruses can emerge at any time, so there’s no way any ISP can guarantee something won’t get through. The important thing to remember is that viruses and spyware installers don’t come to your computer just by email. They can also connect to you straight across the Internet, be lurking at websites, or infect you from a CD/DVD or memory stick you put in one of your disk or USB drives.

If you've upgraded your computer, your version of Windows probably now has an automatic firewall installed. You should check this is turned on in your control panel at the very least. We also recommend that you use your own anti-virus program. AVG and Nod 32 (and quite a few others that are free) work very well, don’t cost anything and usually install and run without problems.

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Howard writes: Hi Rob, I have an occasional problem that you may be able to assist with. When I am away from home I access emails through Actrix WebMail. However if my family is still at home and they check our email, anything new is inaccessible to WebMail. So in order to see the emails before they check I have to get in first. If I miss out and an important email is downloaded at home there doesn't appear to be a way of me accessing it, which sometimes is a problem for my business. Can you assist with this?

Hi Howard, What you describe happens because, by default, your email program is set to delete an email off our server once it has been downloaded, so it's no longer there when you log into WebMail. There is no way of accessing it remotely because it now only lives on the computer it was downloaded to – i.e. your home machine.

There is one thing you could do. You can change the setting in your email program at home so that it leaves copies of emails on the server. This would make them still available when you log in remotely, even if they have been downloaded at home. This change won't be noticed at home, because your email program will only download new emails. It will completely ignore anything it has already downloaded.

Exactly where these settings are can vary slightly according to which version of Outlook or Outlook Express you have, but you should be able to work out how to get to them. Try Tools/Accounts/. Then double-click your email address or account in the box to open the Account Settings dialogue box. Go to the Advanced Tab and tick the box "Leave a copy of messages on the server". If you’re using Outlook you may have to click the “More Settings” button before you can get to the Advanced tab.

The problem this might cause is that unless you’re logging in remotely and deleting stuff that’s no longer needed, your email inbox on our server will start to get pretty full. Eventually, you’ll go over quota and email to you will bounce. So it would be up to you to be vigilant.

You'll notice below the 'Leave messages' tickbox there's an option to keep a copy of all messages on the server but delete them after so many days. You could set this to delete messages older than however many days you're going to be away, and that way you can access your mail while you're gone but you shouldn't have to worry about manually deleting everything later. If you get lots of large messages in a short period of time it is still possible to exceed your quota but it's much less likely.

Exactly where these settings are can vary slightly according to which version of Outlook or Outlook Express you have, but you should be able to work out how to get to them. Try Tools/Accounts/. Then double-click your email address or account in the box to open the Account Settings dialogue box. Go to the Advanced Tab and tick the box "Leave a copy of messages on the server". If you’re using Outlook you may have to click the “More Settings” button before you can get to the Advanced tab.

I hope that helps you sort things.

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Noeline writes: Sorry to be a pain but the copyright thing confuses me a little... If it's not changed as you hope it to be, does that mean if my son copies and pastes stuff from the Internet for his homework for example to use later etc etc is that what you mean by copyright? Can you just clarify or give me some examples that we wouldn't be allowed to do? thanks, Noeline.

Hi Noeline, No pain at all. While there are issues with copying and pasting information and pictures off the Internet, kids doing their homework is not really what the new copyright clause is concerned about. Nobody would be keen to cut your connection off because, as long as it is just about homework, then no one is being commercially disadvantaged.

What the copyright clause is concerned about is people downloading material that they would normally have to pay for so someone is missing out on the profit they are entitled to. The most obvious cases of this would be downloading movies and songs instead of going out and renting DVDs or purchasing music CDs.

 

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