Email Bag

Subject: Thanks to HALNet Support Service

Don writes:

A few weeks ago, a lightning blast destroyed my modem (I did not have the modem protected at that time). I bought a US Robotic software modem to replace it. The instructions said it was easy to install. After struggling with it for a few hours without success, and with much frustration, I called HAL-PC for help. "Bob" patiently walked me through the software at length but without success. He suggested that I might want to try a "hardware controlled modem." The dealer returned my money, so I asked for a hardware controlled type modem and I bought a Hayes PCI Faxmodem. I followed the directions and installed it myself in about THREE MINUTES. It has been working quite well ever since. I do not know why the US Robotic could not be installed on my Dell, but I think they need some help in writing their installation instructions. Thanks to HAL-PC for the great help!!

Editor: I'm glad you were able to get the right modem after all. Our HALNet support staff has seen this problem all too often, so the warning bears repeating. These less-expensive software-controlled modems operate using software drivers, rather than hardware chips, and can lose connections easily. It's very important to make sure that the modem you're buying is HARDWARE-controlled (now called "controller based" modems). Look at the document posted at buymodem.html for a complete explanation. Avoid modems with names like Winmodem, HSP (Host Signal Processor) modems, RPI (Rockwell Protocol Interface) modems or HCF modems, or those that simply have the word "Soft" in their name.

Subject: Pestering e-mail

A HAL-PC Member writes:

Can you please pass this also on to the Webmaster? The last few weeks I'm bombarded with e-mail from a strange mailer, both 'commercial' and porno, probably containing the occasional virus. I immediately delete these messages.

Since only part of the domain is constant, I cannot use the 'block sender' utility. Is there a way for the server at HAL-PC's offices to block this pestering, which obviously is pretty widespread?

The sender is like the one below, but the name changes and also the number in the domain name: *

Thank you for your assistance.

--- Original Message --- ---

From: ForeclosedHomes@mtsbp542.

Subject: Foreclosed Homes: FREE SERVICE!

"You are receiving this special offer because you have provided permission to receive third party email communications regarding special online promotions or offers. If you do not wish to receive any further messages from OPM Network Click Here. This may be a reoccurring mailing."

Editor: This problem is not one that the Webmaster can address for you, but you can add this entry to your "blocked sender" list by using a portion of the address - - and you will hopefully block any address in that domain. I would also advise you to set your Junk Email filters to "aggressive" for "special offers" and "sexually explicit" messages. I reviewed the message you forwarded to me, and unfortunately the spammer, OPM Network, has somehow gotten your address from a third-party advertiser and provided a bogus address for you to opt-out, or remove your address from their list. So I have no reason to believe that any other information they have given you is valid. (5557 Oakland Park Blvd suite 117 Fort Lauderdale, FL, 33313, 1-877-678-2536.) However, you can go to, the non-profit Network Advertising Initiative, and opt-out from their site.

Subject: "E-mail Bag" response

HAL-PC Member Lester Karotkin writes:

Herewith I respond to your invitation to comment on the "E-mail Bag" article (HAL-PC Magazine, October 2002) about Microsoft and Bill Gates. On page 4, the message urges users of Windows to download "critical updates" for the operating system. The last time I did this, the download apparently proceeded as intended.

However, when it was finished, a screen appeared with a box for the user to reboot (required for the update to be installed). When I clicked the reboot box, the computer didn't reboot but instead left me with a blank blue screen and a locked-up computer. I had to turn the power off to shut down, a procedure considered inadvisable.

Fortunately re-powering seemed to get me back in operation with everything (?) intact. The worst is yet to come! I accessed Microsoft's website to find a way to report this problem. When I got to the section inviting users to e-mail the company about problems, a message stated that this function was unavailable.

Talk about dead ends! I have quit doing updates since this frustrating experience.