Jun 25, 2012 / 5:00 am
Thank you all for the great questions you send every day. Sometimes it’s a good idea to share those questions and answers with everyone! This week: Sending mail to “Undisclosed Recipients”, the difference between 32-bit and 64-bit Windows, and getting rid of that Bing thing.
How do I send email to “Undisclosed Recipients”?
To conceal the email addresses of the people you're sending mail to, use the Bcc field. If you leave the To field blank and only enter email addresses in the bcc field, the term Undisclosed Recipients will automatically appear in the To field when you send the email.
If you don’t see the bcc field:
In Windows Live Mail, open a new Email message and click on “Show cc and bcc”
- In Outlook Express and Windows Mail, start composing a new message, click on “View” and then on “All headers”
- In Outlook, see this article for instructions for the version you’re using: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/299804
- In Gmail, compose a new message and click on “add bcc”
- In Hotmail, compose a new message and click on “Show CC and Bcc”
What’s the difference between 32-bit and 64-bit?
Thirty two. See last week’s column, about Windows 7 Calculator (http://rlis.com/columns/column357.htm).
No, no, never mind. I’m just being silly. The terms 64-bit and 32-bit specify how your computer’s processor deals with data. Simply put, 64-bit versions of Windows can handle lots more RAM and work faster than 32-bit Windows. I almost always recommend that my customers get a 64-bit version of Windows 7.
You cannot run 64-bit programs on a 32-bit system, but 32-bit programs will run fine on 64-bit versions of Windows. When I say "programs" that's what I mean. Not "drivers" --- 32-bit drivers will not work on 64-bit operating systems, and that's one big reason why some older printers will not work on Windows 7 64-bit systems. But 32-bit programs will install and run properly almost every time.
Check this article: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-NZ/windows7/32-bit-and-64-bit-Windows-frequently-asked-questions for more info.
How did this Bing thing get on my desktop, and how do I get rid of it?
Last April, Microsoft started pushing out a Windows update to Windows 7 users that installs the Bing search bar right in the middle of your desktop. If you don’t pay attention and opt out, it also changes the default search engine in Internet Explorer, your wallpaper, and your Internet Explorer start page. I’ve had many emails about this and I have been chasing this problem all over town. People seem to have two questions:
- What the heck is BING?
- How do I get rid of this?
I’ll answer the more important question first: Uninstall the Bing Bar as you would any Windows program. (See here for instructions: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows7/Uninstall-or-change-a-program) But wait, there’s more. You still need to change your browser home page and default search engine. Luckily, there’s a video tip here: http://youtu.be/ziZGRBVGvDc and here: http://youtu.be/V9zzkMLI2Q8. And you need to get your wall paper back:
- Right-click on any empty space on your desktop
- Click on Personalization
- Select a theme from the Aero section or follow the steps here: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows7/change-your-desktop-background-wallpaper to put your own picture on the desktop
In answer to the first question, Bing is Microsoft’s search engine meant to compete with Google Search. More about it here: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2694771. It does some things well and some things not so well. You can easily try it out by pointing your browser to http://bing.com or http://bing.ca (or to the local version where ever you are) and searching for something.
It could turn out you like Bing, in which case you can use it as a search engine in your browser. Which is where it belongs, in my opinion. Arguably it doesn’t belong on the desktop and certainly it is not a Windows Update! You can refuse it by removing the check mark from Bing Desktop when it shows up in your Windows Update. You can make it stop showing up by hiding that update. I’ll show you how to do that next week.
Do you need help with your computer? I welcome your comments and questions. I can also visit your home or office to help you and your computer get along. Call me at 250-764-7043, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit Computer Care Kelowna on the web at http://computercarekelowna.com/.
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