Hi everyone, there has been a high interest in my two course dates for the Excel Basics course. Here's an update: the WebEx live session on April 15 has already maxed out on registrations. Those of you who expressed in interest in the event should ...

Free Online Excel Basics Course - Update and more...

Free Online Excel Basics Course - Update

Hi everyone, there has been a high interest in my two course dates for the Excel Basics course. Here's an update: the WebEx live session on April 15 has already maxed out on registrations. Those of you who expressed in interest in the event should register for the April 16 (video) date asap before it gets maxed out as well. Email me at: jscarbrough@jhsconsulting.com and provide your full name and a working email to register. Thanks to all for your high interest; now, let's get registered! EXCEL LOGO PUBLIC DOMAIN


Windows Reset vs Image Restore. . . Which One is Better?

Windows experiences sometimes have an effect that is very revealing. It involved a certain feature in Microsoft PowerPoint misbehaving and after being unable to resolve the issue with technical support, I realized I was on my own with this problem. I tried reinstalling Microsoft Office, ensuring I had all applicable app updates, and still the problem persisted.

A Windows Reset was decided upon as being the best option, which wipes out all data and reinstalls Windows from a hidden partition on the hard drive. I backed up my data and did the reset. Then I reinstalled Microsoft Office. The misbehaving feature of PowerPoint was still raising its ugly head. Confusion set in, since I had always had success using this method. Then I realized that my Windows on that hidden partition must have somehow became corrupted.

I begin looking for a system image backup on my backup drive and found one about five months old. The image restore process became my immediate task and proceeded in that direction. The restore was successful and I immediately opened PowerPoint and tested my misbehaving feature once again; this time success was the outcome. This experience reminded me of just how important backups are; more specifically, it reminded me of the positive payoff of having a system image as the backup. Lesson relearned.

Here's the Pro and Con of these two methods of restoration:

Windows Reset

  • When you can't get rid of a problem that you know is fixable, this is often considered the last option, albeit the "sledge-hammer to the fly" approach.
  • Since the Windows Registry is reset, other secondary issues, i.e. overall reduced PC performance is usually improved.

System Image

  • When you can't get rid of a problem that you know is fixable, this can be a faster solution, depending on how much is on that PC, meaning the number of applications and amount of data stored. If minor, this fix can be a solution in less than twenty minutes.
  • Since an image includes Windows, apps, data, and settings, once the restore is successful, the only thing that is left to do is reinstall any apps or data that you backed up since the day you imaged your PC. If this time period is short, this often can mean having all data reinstalled in minutes.

Consider this as another household chore, along with doing the dishes. The result is less time fixing the PC and more time getting important things accomplished, which is always at the top of our list of intentions.




Free Online Excel Basics Course

Hi everyone, JHS Consulting will be offering a 90-minute free Excel Basics course on April 15 and 16, 2019. The course training will be conducted via video-conferencing web link (WebEx) as well as a video version. For all students who attend and assess this course, we will be also offering a free web-based, full-version 4+ hour training on Introduction to Excel. To register for the free Excel Basics course, email JHS Consulting to register: jscarbrough@jhsconsulting.com

I've been looking at surveys about top technical skills to have on a resume and you know what keeps appearing at the top? Microsoft Office skills, of which Excel is a part. My Excel Basics course I'm offering free on April 15 and 16 could be the start of acquiring an important skillset for your professional work as well as personal work.

This course is for beginning level Excel users and for those who have a need to use Excel for work and/or home. Register soon for this Excel class as we anticipate many people for this training!


How Secure is Your System (Internet of Things)

Recently I read an article in PCMag about how secure is the Internet of Things? by Eric Griffith. Great article and kudos to him. This is a summary with my takeaway.

Let's be clear about the term "System" in this blog title. System could include anything in your house that is high-tech such as a microwave, toaster (yes, some of the more expensive ones qualify), TV, PC, tablet, smartphone (these last 3 obviously), car (definitely), and I won't go on, but you get the idea. A more definitive term and buzz-phrase is The Internet of Things.

It is now possible for hackers to hack into the above mentioned items you own. Yes, common household items are fair game. What used to be the realm of PCs has slowly transitioned to the aforementioned. So the bottom line is, how secure is it?

Alex Balan, Bitdefender's Chief Security Researcher at NSA says to look for a Bug Bounty program. Companies that subscribe are having specialized companies investigate their products for a potential hacker's exploit. Since they tell the company if there's a problem and how to fix it, if your product's company is listed, you're fairly safe, since the company is taking measures, including paying very large fees to uncover any unknown bugs.

Who are some big-time companies having their security vulnerabilities checked? Would you believe the U.S. government Dept of Defense? And there are other heavyweights including Microsoft, Google, United Airlines, Facebook, Yahoo, and Apple.

Technology is here to stay, but as with many good things, there often exists a mixed bag.



The New Samsung Galaxy S10

Samsung shipped pre-orders in late February and is hitting the market. As a long-time Galaxy user, I'm aiming for this one. Here's some stats on it:

  • 6.1 inch AMOLED display
  • Operating System: Android 9 Pie One UI 1.1
  • 12-megapixel camera with optical image stabilization
  • 16-megapixel ultra-wide-angle camera
  • supports hi-res audio; Dolby Atmos
  • in-display fingerprint sensors
  • wireless charging and power sharing
  • 8 GB of RAM
  • Storage: 128/512GB; MicroSD slot
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 855
  • Colors: Flamingo Pink, Prism Blue, Prism Black, Prism White, Prism Green

Strongly considering this as my next phone.


Note: Reminder of my new free Excel Basics Course online April 15 and 16. Classes are beginning to fill up, register soon. To register, send me an email: jscarbrough@jhsconsulting.com


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