All Set Up

 Posted by at 12:02 am  Nick's Blog
Apr 222015

Well, it’s not all set up, but my new Dell computer is up and running. And it only took three or four phone calls to Greg White.

The first step was to install the APC BE550G Back-UPS 550VA 8-outlet uninterruptible power supply that Greg suggested I order with the computer, and to plug everything into. All that was required was connecting one of the battery cables (they are shipped with one cable unplugged) and plugging it into the wall outlet.

Overall the computer setup went well. It was basically a case of connecting the monitor and power cord, sticking the little wireless receiver for the mouse and wireless keyboard in a USB port and turning the computer on. There are 6 USB ports on the back of the computer, two on top, and two on the front, some of which are 2.0 and some 3.0. I started out with the wireless receiver in one of the ports on the back, but the mouse and keyboard were both very slow, so Greg suggested trying one of the ports on top or in the front, saying that even a few inches distance might impact the signal strength. And he was right. I moved it to one of the ports on top and things worked much better.

I have never had a Windows 8 computer and quickly found myself lost trying to find my way through it. So that required another frustrated call to the wise and powerful Greg, who had me install a program called Classic Shell, which replicates the Windows 7 screen. That made life easier.

There were several problems that were software related. I couldn’t get Live Writer to work after downloading it. That is the program I use to format the blog for publication but for some reason it would not cooperate, so once again, Greg to the rescue. He figured out a workaround that will work.

The description of the computer on Amazon said it came with a trial version of Microsoft Office installed, but if it’s there I sure can’t find it. We bought the program a while back for Terry’s Toshiba laptop and I think we can install it on a second computer, if we can just figure out where we put the dumb thing. If not, I’ll have to buy a new copy. 

There is one other software problem I need to try to resolve. When I tried to install Microsoft Streets and Trips I got an error message that said “Microsoft Visual C++2010 Redistributable” had to be installed and then it would close the install program. Greg suggested I go online and see if I could download the required component, but when I tried, I got a message that it could not be downloaded became the computer already has a newer version. Microsoft stopped making Streets and Trips a while back and Greg suggested I switch to DeLorme Street Atlas. The problem is that I have all of our past years’ travel routes plotted and saved in Streets and Trips and I’d like to have them for reference.

Between all of that, running some errands, and my daughter Tiffany coming over for dinner, I ran out of time and did not get the new printer installed. That will be today’s project.
Several people e-mailed to ask me why I didn’t sell my old iMac or donate it to charity instead of blowing holes in it, as I jokingly wrote in yesterday’s blog. A friend wanted it for parts, but we won’t cross paths for at least a year and I don’t want to haul it around that long, so I’m giving it to my daughter. I figure being a single mom with two girls doesn’t bring enough frustration into her life, so I felt it was my duty to add more.

Finally, I received an e-mail yesterday from blog reader Cathy Williams, who said that a cat had stowed away in their motorhome and they suspect it had been with them since they left Catalina Spa in Desert Hot Springs, California. Along the way, they stopped at Camp Verde Resort in Arizona, Hidden Valley in Tijeras, New Mexico, Double D in Texola, Oklahoma, and Bears Den in Grove, Oklahoma. The cat is a male black and white tuxedo cat, with a white face and pink nose. He is neutered, overweight, and friendly. Cathy would really like to get him home to his owners, so if you lost this fellow or know someone who did, e-mail me at and I’ll put you in touch with her. 

Thought For The Day – The company you keep becomes the character you reap.

Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

  12 Responses to “All Set Up”

  1. Apaches Open Office and Libreoffice are both open source code (free & legal) work alike versions of microsoft office. They both read and write Office file formats, and are updated regularly. I’ve been using OpenOffice for 3 or 4 years, and only use Office if it comes free already installed on a computer. You might check them out on a google search, or download and test one out.
    On top of that, I just checked, and at first glance anyway, it looks like Microsoft has moved to the “subscription format”, where you get to pay $10.00 a MONTH to own their program. :-/ Sorry, its use is just too limited (for me) to add that to my budget.

  2. Like Scott we no longer use Microsoft Word, the learning curve from MS Office to Open Office might be 10 minutes and it is free.
    I do not even use Microsoft operating systems any more. I run Linux Mint. I don’t run Windows for several reasons, one being security and the other the cost. Americans made Bill Gates his money or a lot of it and where he chooses to spend it is his business. However, he should remember that charity begins at home not in Africa.

    Sorry for the rant. Please be careful on the road.


  3. Nick, so good of you to run the story about the cat. I know Cathy, and that cat sure picked the right RV to hide away in! She is a true animal lover! Hope someone recognizes him and he is returned to his owner. Thanks for running the story in your blog.

  4. Nick, take a look at this link, it should help with you Microsoft Visual C++2010 issue, it appears that the 2010 version is incompatible with Windows 8 and you will need to get the 2013 version. Here is the link:

  5. I really can’t believe you set it up without Greg being there. He must be teaching you right.

  6. Nick, I am using MS Streets & Trips 2009 on Windows 8.1 … I get a message ” Your registry setting …. etc”. However, by right clicking on the icon and running the program as “As Administrator” it works just fine.

    So, you may try to run as As Administrator.

  7. I’m doing the same dance, trying to get things from one computer to the other. I just discovered that several of my programs on the old computer won’t work, for whatever reason, meaning I can’t capture any of that data!! As far as the new one, lucky for me I had just ONE more copy allowed from that Photoshop disk. It was a miracle that I found it!!! What a pain in the patootie!!

  8. Nick
    Had the same problem with Streets and Trips on my new computer. Make sure your firewall and anti-virus is off during installation. That seemed to work for me. After installation and running the first time it seemed to be fine. I was getting the same error message as you. The only thing I can think of is that the anti-virus and firewall keep that part of the program from loading.

  9. Hey Nick…I wanted to suggest that Cathy take the cat to a local vet to check for a micro-chip. That would help drastically if he was chipped.

  10. Nick
    Google this problem and there are several solutions. Mine was easy solved buddies a little more complicated but we got it on a windows 7 and windows 8.1 machine

  11. I third the motion for Apache Open Office. I like it much better than Microsoft Office and have used it for three or four years now.

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