Why not have Two Screens Setup?

Why not let Bristol Computer Support set you up with 2 screens?  Most PCs already have the capability, and even if your PC does not – a cheap addon graphics card will resolve that problem!

(1)  It’s low cost, a typical screen is £80, plus a graphics card £35 and some labour to install.

(2)  Twice the desktop size – you can be reading information on one screen, while editing or designing on the other.

(3)  It’ll save you money – no need to keep printing information out.  It’s less expensive than buying one large monitor.

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Cyrus Lyric Music Player

The dreaded salesman strikes.

Just been on a call where I’m told the WiFi doesn’t reach a room.  I arrive on site, and that is not the issue at all…

There is a wonderful looking device called “a Cyrus Lyric 9”.  I connect the unit to the WiFi using the power-line connectors the client has already bought, and I prove the unit is now on the internet – it plays all the wonderful Internet Radio channels.

That’s not what the client was interested in.  He wants to play his iTunes and Spotify through this device – with no wires!  The manual advises you to copy all your files to a NAS drive or a USB drive – great in theory.  Normally iTunes has encrypted them because they are purchased through iTunes!

To play any music from his iMac, we have to download and install a 3rd party bit of software that makes the iMac into an uPnP server.  It still won’t play Spotify unless an iPad is plugged into it.  £1500 and the system does not do what my client needs it to do.

For lest than £50, I recommended a solution for the client to connect in a simple Bluetooth music device into his existing excellent Hi-Fi system, and from there he can play whatever his iPad plays.  He’s got to have his Spotify app installed, and his music on his iPad, but he can hold the iPad and choose his music without getting up!

If you want good common sense computer support, that can save you money in the long run, Bristol Computer Support Ltd.

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Spam email from someone I know…

A client just called me to say she had received an email from her husband, and was wandering how that was possible…he’s been dead for over 3 years.

Spammer systems are programs or “robots” as they call them.  These programs are able to “pretend” to be an email address, and they cleverly send the email to associated emails.  Have you or one of your contacts ever forwarded one of the those emails ending with “send to 100 of your friends, or have 7 years bad luck” etc?  These are just the kind of emails a spammer is looking for – perfect for this kind of scam.

So it’s probably not personal, it’s a clever computer program trying to trap you into clicking on a link or an attachment.  Not a lot you can really do about it, as this kind of attack tends to go through the spam protection systems, which is why the spammers do it.

Matt, BCS Engineer.

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Office 365

If you’re sick of deleting the same email on your phone, tablet and PC, then have a look at Office 365. I’ve signed up 10 small businesses over the last year, for as little as £3.10 per mailbox per month.

It’s a simple process. (1) I send you an email with a link to sign up with Microsoft. (2) I work with your website company to make some changes. (3) I help you upload your mailbox.

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Windows 10 – Evaluation

We’re just installing the new Windows 10 evaluation.  It was an easy download from Microsoft.  We chose the ISO image option, which we simply burnt to a DVD blank disk.

It looks pretty good.  The key thing is the start button, back in the bottom left hand corner, brings up a menu – a cross between a tile interface and the good old All Programs screen! Very good overall.

The graphics look even sharper.  We’ll add a few things and see how we go.  More info later.

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Islander Kayak

Many thanks to Bob Slee.  I just had a great tour of the factory that makes the Islander Kayaks. Based in Clevedon, Palm Equipment International create all kinds of kayaks, on site in a large factory.  “Bob the Builder” Bob Slee made the ovens himself to create the kayaks from moulds also created.  Plus the clothing, buoyancy aids, paddles.

I’m now a proud owner of one of their Kayaks and can’t wait to get out and use it.  Thanks to Bob, who donated the prize to a raffle for the muscular dystrophy “Indian Banquet Night” held last week in @ Bristol.  I was the lucky winner!

I’ll aim to paddle below, but I suspect it will be drifting around near a beach for me this summer!

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External WiFI – weatherproof / waterproof antenna and access point.

BCS also specialise in outdoor solutions for WiFi.  One of our clients, a property developer, owns a group of properties situated around a main campus.  One of the buildings is a holiday cottage across the road from a main building.

We’ve developed a solution to give that building low cost WiFi.  We are going to connect an external WiFi antenna/access point to give the cottage access to the WiFi network, without having to pay for a monthly phone line or an ADSL connection.

The cable is weather proof, being external Cat5, and the access point is a sealed Power Over Ethernet device, so is powered from the main office.

If you need this kind of solution, please call to discuss….Matt Clark 07966 497090.

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Microsoft Quotes – can’t see where to get a quote going?

If you’re struggling to find your login to generate a partner quote or to carry out general admin on your account, then the URL below take you there.

https://portal.office.com/Partner/Default.aspx

Login with you first account, the xxxx@xxxx.onmicrosoft.com account.

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Invoices attached as word documents

We’ve had a surge of PCs being infected by people clicking on “word document” invoices.  These invoices have come from email addresses that are new to the person, but if you think about, you are just as likely to get an infected email from someone you know.  Probably more so!

Your Antivirus will not always pick on on this “macro” malware and then your PC can get issues.

The simplest was to avoid trouble is never to click on the word attachments.  Ask your suppliers to send you the invoice using PDF – I have not yet seen malware be transferred with a PDF.

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Microsoft Exchange Hosted Services for Small Businesses

BCS are resellers of all the Microsoft online/cloud services.  The main items that people are interested in are the replacements for Small Business Server, commonly called SBS.  Small businesses no longer need to purchase expensive hardware, but will have to purchase mailboxes that are hosted by Microsoft.

(1) Small Business with Office (currently 2013) with the hosted Exchange server, and (2) Small Business with Online Office and Exchange server.

With Office – £100.80 per mailbox per year.  £8.40 per month.
With Online Office – £37.20 per mailbox per year. £3.10 per month.

Each mailbox has 50Gb space, and you can link your iPhone, Andriod phones, iPads, tablets, laptops and so on.

BCS will help set everything up, so that all your email/contacts/calendars are available from day one.

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