1999-06-19 / Columnists

Got Computer Questions?

Ask Randy From Magichost

Q: I heard you were starting a computer Q/A column and thought I would take this opportunity to ask one. My friend keeps telling me I have to defrag. Is this important? And if so, how do I do it? -----Alice

A: Hi Alice, thank you for writing in. Your friend is very right. Defrag keeps your files close together and makes other parts of your hard drive available for use. It can also speed up the seek time, or amount of time it takes for your computer to find and open a program. It is good to run Defrag about once or twice each month. Another great tool for keeping your hard drive up to par is Scan Disk. Scan Disk checks for errors and corrupted sectors on your system. Scan Disk can be run once every other month.

Here's how. In Windows 95, and 98 click on Start, go to programs, go to accessories, go to system tools, and then click on Disk Defragmenter or Scan Disk.

Q: Hi, This column is a great idea, here's my question. How would I go about drawing a picture on the computer, and transfer it to another program? Actually I need to know how to take anything on the computer and transfer it to another program. If you could help me I would greatly appreciate it. ----Thanks Sam

A: Sam, drawing a picture in windows is simple. All windows based computers come with a program called Paint. With this program you can use the mouse to draw, paint, and edit other pictures. It even has a spray paint tool, a fill in tool, and allows you to incorporate various shapes, and even text into your pictures. You can find this program in Windows 95/98 by clicking Start, pointing to Programs, Accessories, and clicking Paint. In Windows 3.1, you can double click Accessories, then double click Paintbrush. It is very simple to use, just experiment with it.

As for bringing images into a word processing program, windows has a pre-built program called the clipboard. The clipboard works as a temporary holder for images and text. Using it is simple, most programs have an Edit menu option on the top of the screen. Highlight the text or image you want to bring into the other program and select Edit, then Copy. Now go into the program you would like to place this image/text and select Edit, then Paste. Let's say you drew a picture in Paint and wanted to bring it into Microsoft Word. In Paint draw or open a picture, select the "Select" tool in the upper tool box, drag the box around the picture you want to copy, click Edit, then Copy. Go into Microsoft Word, or the word processing program you are using and select Edit, then Paste. The image you drew should now appear in your document. This also works for bringing images from the web into your document. Simply right mouse click a picture you like on a web site and select copy. Go into a program you want to bring the image into and click Edit, then Paste.

Web site of the week: http://www.y2k.com

Please send any questions you may have relating to computers to: Randy Sofia care of The Wave (8808 Rockaway Beach boulevard, Rockaway, NY 11693) or send e-mail to:


(This weekly Q&A column is written by Randy Sofia, a computer programmer, and president of Magichost Internet Services. Magichost is a web hosting service with Rockaway in mind. Visit the website at http://www.magichost.com or e-mail him at Rockaway@magichost.com).



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