PC Doctor November 11, 2009
Have your computer questions answered here! Search the PC Doctor archive or submit a question of your own at firstname.lastname@example.org
Dear PC Doctor,
I have a plain screensaver on my computer that came with it when I bought it. I would like to have a picture of my new granddaughter instead. I know you can do this somehow because I've seen other people do it. Can you tell me how I can do this?
If you have a digital camera, you will have to load the picture you want onto your computer. If not, you can have someone email a photo to you or scan it in using your scanner. Or have someone else scan it in for you and save it onto your computer in your My Pictures\Slideshow folder, which is located on your C: Drive in My Documents. So wherever it is coming from, when you save it, be sure to save it in the correct spot. You can also save multiple pictures in that same folder, so the slide show will change, showing all the photos randomly. Once that is done, then you will want to close out of any windows or programs you have open. Right click on any blank spot on your desktop and a drop down menu will appear. Choose "Properties" and then the screen saver tab. Around the middle of the page, there is a "Screen saver" area with a down arrow that I want you to click on. Choose "My pictures slideshow" and then click the "Settings" button next to it. In there you can change the speed, how big you want the pictures to be, whether you want transitions, etc. Also in the middle of the pages is "Use pictures in this folder." It should say C:\Documents\MyPictures\SlideShow, where the username is either your name or the name of the computer. If it is not, then click the "Browse" button and search for it on your computer. Select the correct folder and click the OK button. Click the "Apply" button so you can see what you will be getting as a final product. If everything is the way you want it, then click the OK button. Enjoy the slides of your new granddaughter!
Dear PC Doctor,
I would like to make some music CDs (or "burning"), but I don't know if I have a CD burner on my computer. Is there a way to tell?
In most new computers it's the norm to have at least a CD burner if not a DVD burner. I would be surprised if you have purchased a computer in the last 2 years, and it didn't have at least a CD burner. However, it can't hurt to be sure.
One thing you can do is to look at the CD drive on your computer. Your CD drive is the disc drive, in which you place a CD or DVD to run it. If there is a logo on the front of the tray that says CD-R, CD-RW, DVD-R, or DVD-RW, then you have a burner. If it only says CD Drive then you most likely do not have a burner.
Another way to check is to go to the Start menu and right-click on My Computer and choose Properties from the drop down men that opens. From there click on the "Hardware" tab and then the "Device Manager" button. Look in the list for your CD or DVD drive. There should be a plus sign next to it, click on that (or double click on the words CD or DVD). When it expands down, if the extension says RW for either CD or DVD then you have a burner!
Once you have determined that you have a burner you'll need some burning software. Your computer may have come with something like Roxio. Just look at the programs from your Start button. I use iTunes, which is free to download from Apple's website: www.apple.com/itunes
. No worries, it runs on both Apple and Microsoft operated computers.
Now if you've discovered that you don't have one, you can either have one installed or you can purchase an external one from a computer store. This will plug into your USB drive on your computer and usually also comes with burning software.
Until next time… happy computing!