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					Timesaving 101 - Tips

From turning up missing files to one-click Web searches, our tips, tricks, and shortcuts
help you work smarter and faster

Every workday is different from the last, but they all have one thing in common: only so
many hours to get things done. Although working harder and longer is always an option,
we have a much better idea--make room in your hectic schedule for our 101 timesaving

In these pages, you'll find fresh ideas on a wide range of subjects--everything from how
to find and manage files and e-mail messages to how to get the most out of a team of
collaborators. You'll find tricks for optimizing hardware and handheld PC performance,
as well as for reducing errors in your applications and sidestepping computing disasters.
Many reflect the applications you're likely using-Microsoft Windows and Office--but the
bulk either can be applied to other applications or are vendor-agnostic.


File Management

It's Around Here Somewhere You mistakenly saved a file to the wrong folder. Which
one? In Windows Explorer, select Tools/Find/Folders. Type the filename (or a wild card
such as *.DOC) in the Named area and click Find Now; then drag the discovered file to
the correct folder.

My Documents-Not! Microsoft Word normally insists on saving your files to the My
Documents folder. To point Word to a new default folder, select Tools/Options, the File
Locations tab, and the Documents entry; then click Modify. Select a new target folder
and click OK.

At Your Elbow For easy access to a document you're currently working on, drag the file
from Windows Explorer onto the desktop to create a shortcut.

One-Click Access Alternatively, Windows 95/98 Active Desktop users can drag often-
used files as well as applications onto the Taskbar's QuickLaunch toolbar.

Pop-Up Spreadsheets If you frequently work on multiple Excel files simultaneously,
saving them all to a single workspace lets you pop them all open at once. Select File/Save
Workspace, and name the file.

Order in the Folder! Even a long filename can get lost in a crowded folder. Try
prefixing your filenames with the type of file, client, or project name. Because folders are
arranged alphabetically, like items will be grouped together

Provided by                            Nancy L. Slonneger   
I Didn't Want This Program Sometimes new software stakes a claim to existing file
extensions, which means that whenever you open the file, it wastes time by launching the
wrong application. Hold down the Shift key as you right-click the filename, select Open
With and the program you prefer, then check the "Always use this program to open this
type of file" box.

Jar Your Memory Office users who suffer occasional amnesia (Where's that file?
What'd I name it?) should check out the Journal in Outlook. There's a cheat sheet listing
all the Office applications and files you've worked on and when.

Go, Fonts, Go! A large number of installed fonts slows your system; more than 700 can
cause Registry problems. Take a font count by selecting Start/Settings/Control Panel, and
then Fonts--the font count is on the Status bar. View a font by double-clicking its name;
remove it by selecting File/Delete.

Faster Frequent Finds Save time on frequently run searches using Explorer's Find Files
or Folders option. Before a search, select Options/Save Results. After the search, select
File/Save Search to put a shortcut to the saved search results on your desktop. To run the
search again, select Find Now.

Speed Up Surfing

One-Click Browsing Add the Web Address toolbar to your Taskbar by simply right-
clicking the bar and selecting Toolbars/Address. To launch your default browser, copy
and paste a URL onto the toolbar.

Quick History Lesson To access a recently visited site you neglected to add to your
Bookmarks or Favorites folder, check your History list. In Netscape Navigator, select
Communicator/Tools/History; in Internet Explorer, click the History button and browse
the Details column.

Go Faster A quick way to reach a company or organization's Web site is to type "Go"
and the organization name, such as "Go IRS." If there's no perfect match, you'll get a list
of possible site matches to select from.

My Favorite Searches If you perform the same Web search repeatedly, bookmark the
search results page (or add it to your Favorites). Selecting the bookmark runs the search

Where's This Page From? To add the relevant URL address to Web page printouts in
Netscape Navigator, select File/Page Setup, select the Document Location check box, and
click OK.

Overcoming 404 When encountering 404 Not Found errors, removing elements from the
URL one at time, from right to left, sometimes loads the page. Check out www. for more ideas.

Provided by                            Nancy L. Slonneger   
Learn the Rules Before punching in your next search Engine query, take the time to read
the site's instructions and Familiarize yourself with its unique syntax. You'll get better
Results and save time in the long run.

Keep Track of Links It's easy to lose track of a page with lots of links you want to
explore by following one or another. In Internet Explorer, open the page of links while
holding down the Shift key to open the page a second time in its own window.

Run, Browser, Run To quickly open a Web page when your default browser isn't
loaded, select Start/Run, type the URL, and press Enter. (If the address includes www,
drop the http:// prefix.) The browser will open at the requested page.

Top of the Heap Add frequently visited sites and search engines to Navigator's Personal
Toolbar. Select View/ Show/Personal Toolbar; add bookmark items by selecting
Communicator/Bookmarks/Edit Bookmarks, then drag the bookmark to the toolbar.

E-mail Mastery

Sign Your Mail You haven't automatically started adding your name, tide, and contact
info to each e-mail message? First, create and save a signature file. Then in Navigator,
select Edit/Preferences/Mail and Newsgroups. In the Signature File box, add the path and
filename of your signature file.

Stamp Out Spam To activate Microsoft Outlook 98's or 2000's junk e-mail filters, open
Inbox, select Organize and Junk E-Mail. Move your spam to the Junk E-Mail folder, save
it to another folder, or send it straight to the Recycle Bin. Select Click Here to download
updated junk e-mail filters from Microsoft's Web site.

Streamline Message Threads Stop wading through irrelevant text in long e-mail
message threads by removing extraneous greetings, text, and signatures as you go along.

You Didn't Get It? Some mail programs reject attachments over 2MB in size. To ensure
your attachments arrive at their destination, compress large files using a utility such as

Take Time to Fight Spam Squeal on spammers: Reroute spam to abuse@ (the e-mail
provider it came from), such as or Or forward it

Knowledge in the Mailbox The next time you're navigating the Microsoft Web site for
Knowledge Base articles, save some time: If you know the article number, include it in
the subject line of an e-mail to The full text will automatically
be sent to you.

Provided by                           Nancy L. Slonneger   
One-Click Send If you e-mail someone regularly, right-click the Windows desktop and
select New/Shortcut. In the command line, type "mail to:" followed by your
correspondent's e-mail address. Click Next, name the shortcut, and click Finish.

Quick Broadcast Message To send a single message to a group of recipients, put your e-
mail address in the To line and add their addresses to the BCC (blind carbon copy) line.

You Should Call Her To refer a client or contact, send contact details from Outlook
using a VCard attached to an e-mail. Open the contact's details and select File/Export to
VCard file, then name and save the file. Send the VCard as an attachment that the
recipient can import into a Contacts folder or any VCard-compliant address book.

Address Groups Streamline sending e-mail to a set of customers or clients by creating a
mailing list or group. In Navigator, select Address Book/New List; in Outlook, select
Address Book/New Group. Name the list and add the addresses, then put the group name
in the To or BCC field of your message. zzz Tips to the Rescue

Prepare for the Worst Rather than waste time scrambling when trouble strikes, keep
key computer and hardware data--setup information, serial numbers and product IDs,
tech support phone numbers, e-mail and ISP account settings--all in a small notebook or
another safe, central location.

Quick Backup Habits As you work on a detailed project, keep an up-to-date printed
copy, store a copy on a floppy disk, or e-mail a copy to both your business e-mail account
as well as a free, Web-based mail account. In Word, select Tools/Options/Save to create
automatic file backups and timed saves.

Send to Zip If backing up files to your Iomega Zip drive is a daily routine, speed the
process by adding a Zip drive shortcut to your SendTo folder. In Explorer, drag the Zip
drive icon into your Windows\SendTo folder. Then you can right-click files in Explorer
or on the desktop and choose SendTo/Zip Drive.

Password Precautions The best precaution against prying eyes is not password
protection--it's too easy to forget your password and lose access to the data. Instead,
consider masking a file as a program file by giving it an .EXE or .DLL extension.

Can’t Tell Them Apart To compare two similar documents in Microsoft Word, open
one and select Tools/Track Changes/Compare Documents. Select the other and click
Open. On the first document, Word marks in color the differences between the two.

Zip Them Up Compressing files with a utility such as Nico Mark Computing's WinZip
( speeds backup. If you're saving to floppy disks, WinZip can create a
compressed file that spans multiple 1.44MB disks, making saving large files easier.

Provided by                            Nancy L. Slonneger    
Monthly Fire Drill Regular backup routines aren't enough to ensure your protection
from a data disaster. You must also regularly check your backups to make sure they're
readable, and practice restoring data so you can do it confidently in an emergency.

Where's the Windows CD? You can save days of downtime by having the original CD-
ROM and product key number on hand for your operating system. Some dealers neglect
to supply them on systems with preloaded software, so be sure to request them.

Healthy and Productive Computer viruses are deadly time-wasters. Check your
antivirus software vendor's Web site monthly, if not weekly, to download updates. When
outbreaks occur, visit the site immediately.

Take a Walk Around the Block If a red-alert emergency strikes--you formatted a disk
containing valuable data, deleted directories, or contracted a virus--switch the machine
off and walk away. You'll do more damage trying to fix things in the heat of the moment
than by calmly pursuing a solution a few minutes later.

Strive for Perfection

D'oh! Not Again! Set up Word to catch and correct your chronic misspellings. Select
Tools/AutoCorrect, type the typo, and press F7; then select the correct spelling and

Protect Your Formulas An inadvertently altered or deleted formula can wreak havoc on
your spreadsheets. To protect your worksheets, select Format/Cells/Protection to
unprotect data cells, then select Tools/Protection to protect the worksheet. (First,
unprotect each cell where data is to be entered, then protect the other cells.)

The Beauty of Boilerplate Don't risk errors by typing boilerplate text into your
documents. Insert it in one step using Word's AutoCorrect. For example, to enter an
exclusion clause by typing \exc, go to Tools/AutoCorrect; type the clause in the Replace
field and the \exc shortcut in the With field.

Flag the Exceptions To flag potentially erroneous data in Excel, select the target data,
then choose Format/Conditional Formatting. Write a test to identify unusual data and
format it in red for easy viewing.

Timesaving Templates To protect the originals from error, save frequently used
documents or worksheets as templates. Remove any extraneous data, select File/Save As,
and save the file as a .DOT (document template) in Word or .XLT file in Excel. To use
the template, go to File/New, then save the new work as a template file.

Document the Details To ease the job of updating macros and templates, note all
relevant details and assumptions. For macros, use comments; for spreadsheets, dedicate a
sheet for notes; in word processors, keep a read-me file of details in your template folder.

Provided by                            Nancy L. Slonneger   
Fast Fill-in-the-Blanks If you create custom lists in Excel (Tools/Options/Custom Lists),
complete a series of entries automatically using AutoFill. Type the first entry (e.g., Jan.)
into a cell. Placing the cursor over the cell pops up a cross in the lower right corner; drag
it down the column or across the row to complete the series.

Style and Grace Create consistently formatted headings in your Word docs by selecting
headings from Word's Style drop-down list. To create a table of contents, Choose
Insert/Index Tables/Table of Contents.

Check Your Postings Check for incorrectly posted data in your accounting software by
periodically running transaction reports on your accounts (or categories) and check the
accuracy of the postings.

One Time Only To avoid waste and inaccuracies, weed out repeated information in your
databases. In Microsoft Access, create and run a Find Duplicates Query by selecting
Queries/New/Find Duplicates Query Wizard.

Master of Your Documents To standardize styles and pagination across individual
documents that are part of a large project, use Word's Master Document option
(View/Master Document).

Handheld Helpers

Prints Away If your Windows CE or Palm device lacks a printer driver, check your
printer vendor's Web site for the proper driver, or try BSquare's bPrint ($30; or Westtek's Jetcet Print (825;

Free Maps Windows CE users can save time by not getting lost. You'll find Pocket
Streets 3.0 and sample city maps on the Microsoft Web site at

Pocket Excel Tricks To help spreadsheets scale down more gracefully, reduce file size
by removing empty worksheets before you convert the files. Avoid scrolling a workbook
by naming key areas using name ranges (i.e., name the totals area Totals) and then locate
the area using the GoTo command (e.g., GoTo Totals).

Pocket Word Tricks Navigate lengthy documents more easily by adding headings to
each major section, then select View/Outline. Collapse the document to show only the
headings, then expand the section you're working on.

Long Live the Battery Conserve your PDA's battery life by disabling sounds, dimming
the backlight, and avoiding using a modem on battery rather than AC power. Don't rush
to throw out used alkaline batteries, either--many will still have enough juice left to
power other devices, such as radios.

Provided by                            Nancy L. Slonneger    
Always Take the Shortcut Use shortcut keys (displayed to the right of menu commands)
to speed your way around applications. Many Windows 95/98 shortcuts will work in
Windows CE; press the Windows key and space bar to see a list of them.

Speedy Synchronization Save documents you create on your Win CE handheld to the
My Documents\Synchronized Files folder. Connect to your desktop; when the File
Synchronization dialog appears, click OK. If ActiveSync is enabled, the fries will be
converted and stored on your desktop. Store desktop files in the folder called My
Documents\devicename\Synchronized Files for automatic copying to your handheld.

Hang Up When You're Done To reduce time spent online, configure your Win CE
settings to automatically disconnect from your e-mail service when message sending and
reception are complete. Select Inbox/Compose/Options/Services; select your service, and
choose Properties/Next. Select "Automatically disconnect session after actions are
performed" and click OK.

Weeding Out Shortcuts The more icons and objects you have on the desktop, the longer
it takes your handheld to redraw the screen. Speed up rendering by deleting all
extraneous desktop shortcuts.

Forget Me Not Create and store quick calculations using the Windows CE calculator.
The results of any calculations are saved when you exit and will appear upon relaunch in
both the Paper Tape and Accumulator windows.

Smooth Hardware Moves

A Few More Pages The toner on your laser cartridge runs dry in the middle of a print job
and there's no time to replace it. To eke out a few more pages, remove the cartridge from
the printer, shake it from side to side several times, then reinsert.

Take the Heat Using non-heat-resistant labels in a laser printer can damage the
machine's internal components. Avoid a service call by using laser-compatible labels
(which usually work fine in ink-jet printers, as well).

Out of the Frying Pan Just like electrical lines, phone lines are sensitive to power
surges. When shopping for a surge protector for your PC and peripherals, be sure to buy
one with a plug for your modem line so it's protected, too.

Latest and Greatest To keep your hardware devices running at peak efficiency, or to
remedy any bad behavior you're experiencing now, check the manufacturers' Web sites
periodically and download any new driver updates.

Speedy Scanner Tricks To reduce scanning time, select only the area of a document or
image you want scanned, and select a resolution appropriate for the task. Higher is better
for images destined for the printer, but 72 dots per inch is fine for images headed for Web

Provided by                           Nancy L. Slonneger   
No Lollygagging Run Disk Cleanup (Start/Programs/ Accessories/System Tools/Disk
Cleanup) to free up space on your drive, then Disk Defragmenter (Start/Programs/
Accessories/System Tools/Disk Defragmenter) to reorganize your files so they open

Hot Printing Want to print without opening a document's application every time? In
Explorer, expand the Printers folder, drag the icon of the desired printer to the
Windows\SendTo folder, and select Add a Shortcut when prompted. To print a
document, right-click it in Explorer, then select Send To and the printer.

Just Keep Trying Having trouble getting through to your Internet service provider (ISP)
during peak hours? Instead of trying manually, have your modem redial automatically
every minute or two. In Windows 95/98, open Dial-Up
Networking/Connections/Settings. Select the Redial check box, adjust the options to your
liking, and click OK.

Put the Wheel to Work To program your Microsoft IntelliMouse or other mouse wheel
to perform specific, common tasks (such as double-clicking or opening Windows
Explorer or the Start menu), select Start/ControlPanel/ Mouse/Wheel. From the Button
Assignment list, select the target task; click Apply, then Close.

A Better Way to Fax Avoid having to leave your PC on to send and receive faxes by
using eFax ( The free service provides you with a fax number, receives
faxes, and forwards them to you via e-mail.

Let's Go, Team

Maybe She's in a Meeting? Save time and end meeting confusion by publishing your
personal calendar to your office intranet or the Internet, or send it to coworkers and
clients via e-mail. In Outlook 2000, select Calendar, then File/Save as Web Page.

Better Go Back and Check To help ensure accuracy, store all versions of Word
documents (especially team-edited ones) in a single file by selecting File/Versions/Save
Now. Set to save files automatically upon closing or on demand.

My Comments Are in Red Use Word's revision tools feature to easily view and sort
through team members' document edits. Go to View/Toolbars/Reviewing; then click the
Track Changes button. Each editor's changes will appear in a different color. View each
change individually to accept or reject them.

Look Over Any Changes Save time tracking down spreadsheet changes in Excel by
selecting Tools/Track Changes/Highlight Changes, then choose Track changes while
editing. You can view changed cells on the worksheet or create a detailed list of

Provided by                           Nancy L. Slonneger   
That Special Something Streamline document formatting by creating a standard set of
rules for typeface, size, and layout of common documents. Maintain the consistency
easily by creating templates in Word or Excel by selecting File/Save As and set the Save
as Type to Document Template or Template.

Printed Yesterday Afternoon To keep track of various printed document versions,
insert the date and time in the document's footer. In Word, select View/Header and
Footer and switch to the footer area. Click the Insert Date and Insert Time buttons and
click Close.

Add a Comment To insert explanatory details or comments into a colleague's Excel
spreadsheet or Word document, select Insert/Comment and type your text. A small
comment marker appears in the cell's top right corner; hold the mouse pointer over the
marker to reveal the text.

It's at the Top of My List ... Streamline your work flow using Outlook 98's task list
feature. Select Task and fill in the subject and completion date and assign it a priority
level. To view what's in the queue, select View/Current View/Active Tasks.

Play It Again To speed up creation, include older slides in new PowerPoint
presentations. Select Insert/Slides from Files, choose the Find Presentation tab, and open
the source presentation. Select the target slide and click Insert to automatically add it to
the new one.

Here's Your Cue You can add speaker notes to printed PowerPoint presentations that
won't show up onscreen. Select View/Speaker Notes, then File/Print. From the Print
What list, select Notes Pages and click OK.

Quick Application Tricks

One Through 20 To quickly number data in a Word table, select the target cells, then
click the Numbering button on the Formatting toolbar. The numbers will update
automatically as you alter the table.

Tabs in Tables If you use tabs to format data in tables, you'll find that pressing the Tab
key jumps you to the next cell--no good if you want to tab within cells. For this, press

Give Up Scrolling When working on a lengthy Word document broken up by headings,
select View/Document Map to list the headings along the left side. Click the headings to
navigate the document.

B Is for Brush You can save time switching between tools in your graphics package by
using the keystroke assigned to each function. In Adobe Photoshop, for instance, B is for
brush and M is for marquee; in Jasc Paint Shop Pro, use G to zoom and S to select. Check
your image editor's help file for details.

Provided by                             Nancy L. Slonneger   
Look at the Pictures Later To speed up scrolling a Word document with lots of graphics,
turn off the image display. Select Tools/Options/View, then enable, the Picture
Placeholders check box; this replaces images with empty frame placeholders.

Wait, What Happened? The Insert key overwrites text; hit it by accident, and you can
lose some work. Disable it by selecting Tools/Customize/Keyboard/All Commands from
the Categories list, then assign Cancel to the Insert key.

Create a Personal Toolbar Add your most frequently used Word or Excel commands to
the toolbar by selecting Tools/ Customize, and the Commands tab. Drag the target
command to the toolbar. To view an extensive list of commands in Word, select All
Commands from the Categories list.

Automatic Macros If there's a macro you execute upon opening an Excel workbook,
renaming it auto_open will cause it to launch automatically.

Common Database Sense Save time entering data into your database by entering only
the information you actually use. Will you ever need a customer's date of birth, for

Crunching Numbers If your accounting software lacks the reporting and analysis
features you need, import the data to Excel (or another spreadsheet program) by selecting
File/ Export, then the file format of your accounting software. Comma-separated value
(CSV) format should also work.

Goof-Proof Graphics

Clip Art Shangri-La If your image collection's getting stale, Corel's and Microsoft's clip
art galleries--www.clipart-download.eom and,
respectively--offer thousands of images free for the download.

What Do We Have Here? An easy way to locate all the images on your system is to use
Word's search option. Select Insert/Picture/From File and click Advanced. In the Look in:
box, select the target drive or subfolder, choose the Search subfolders check box, and
click Find Now. Click the Preview button to view each image.

Just Gotta Flip It If your software application won't let you rotate or flip an image,
simply cut and paste the image into your graphics program, flip the image, then cut and
paste it back into the original application.

App of Your Choice If you can't get a clip art image supplied with one application to
open in the program you're using, open the image in its own application and select
Edit/Copy. Then open the program you want to use and select Edit/Paste to import the

Provided by                           Nancy L. Slonneger   
Drop-Cap Drama Dress up your Word documents by leading off the first word in each
major section with a drop capital. Place your insertion point in the word, then select
Format/Drop Cap.

For My Eyes Only? To specify the status of a document in Word (draft, confidential,
and so on), insert it as a watermark or WordArt image. Choose Insert/Picture/ WordArt;
format the label to a pale gray or pastel color, and size and rotate it into position. Select
the image, right-click, and select Format WordArt. Select the Wrapping tab and
Wrapping: None, then click OK. Finally, right-click the WordArt label again and select
Order/Send Behind Text.

Automatic Images To quickly insert the same image into a Word document numerous
times, designate the image as an AutoText item. Insert the image into a document, size it,
then select it. Choose Insert/AutoText/New, name the image, and click OK. To add the
image to any document, type the AutoText name and hit F3.

I Need That Screen To capture an application window or Web page as a graphic, press
the PrintScreen key to capture the entire screen or Alt-PrintScreen to copy only the
current window. Paste the image into an application using Edit/Paste.

Streamline Your Clip Art Organize the clip art images you most often use into a
Favorites category. In Microsoft Clip Gallery 5.0, locate and right-click an image, select
Clip Properties, the Categories tab, and the Favorites category (or select New Category
and create and name a new one). Click OK.

Liven Up Your Images To add variety to a commonly used illustration image in Corel
WordPerfect, change its colors. Right-click the image, select Edit Image, then click on
the Separate button to split the image into components. Select each and choose your

Provided by                             Nancy L. Slonneger    

Description: Confidential Watermark Template Powerpoint document sample