Here are some links you may find useful:

Computers and Technology Links

  • Ask the Computer Lady!--Got Computer Questions? Ask The Computer Lady
  • bleepingcomputer.com--Their site states: "Bleeping Computer ® is a self-education tool for the novice user to learn basic concepts about Computer Technology. Our focus is to allow the novice computer user to be able to have a place that they can come and discuss computer/technology problems with their peers and at the same time have a rich resource in which to learn the "basics" about computers and technology."
  • Computing.net--in addition to the many technical support forums, you will find Howtos and instructions for novices
  • CNET.com--the premier destination for tech product reviews, news, price comparisons, free software downloads, daily videos, and podcasts.
  • The Elder Geek--find answers to your Windows questions and problems here
  • "Every File Format in the World"--from Whatis.com
  • Extreme Tech--Deep technology content for the IT community
  • file.net --"file.net is an online forum that makes available carefully researched information on just about any Windows file."
  • ghacks.net - Ghacks Technology News, a daily update website with software reviews, Windows and Linux tutorials as well as Internet news
  • iFixit  LOOK!!- The free repair manual - "Fixing the world, one piece of hardware at a time."
  • Kim Komando--Check out this Web site to see why Kim Komando is so popular with many of our SCUG members
  • Microsoft AnswersLOOK!!--"Over a half a million people go to Microsoft Answers every day for help ."
  • Microsoft Fix it Solution CenterLOOK!!--Use Microsoft's FREE automated trouble shooter.  Fix it Center finds and fixes many common PC and device problems automatically.
  • Microsoft SupportLOOK!!--Find Solutions to your technical problems, popular Microsoft downloads, Key Resources for Home Users and more.
  • Microsoft TechNet Online--technical resources and tools for IT Professionals
  • MrExcel.com--Tips and Solutions for Excel
  • Office Watch--Since 1996, the fearless news source for Microsoft Office users. Word, Outlook, Excel, Powerpoint and Access.
  • Paul Thurrott's SuperSite for Windows--Paul Thurrott's SuperSite for Windows is dedicated to providing all of the information you need to evaluate Microsoft's upcoming Windows platform technologies.
  • PC Magazine--your complete guide to PC computers, peripherals and upgrades
  • PCWorld.Com--tech product reviews, tech news, how-to's and free downloads
  • Sysinternals Freeware--provides you with advanced utilities, technical information, and source code related to Windows
  • Tech Support Guy--free tech support from volunteers/forums
  • Techie Buzz - "know your technology head on"
  • Techterms.com--free online dictionary of computer and technology terms
  • Tweaks.com--this site is dedicated to improving and customizing Microsoft Windows
  • User Manuals for Consumer Electronics LOOK!! --from Retrevo  the consumer electronics shopping site visited by over 4 million people every month.
  • Windows Help and How-To--from Microsoft
  • Windows Startup Online Search --let this handy online directory help you identify all those programs that run on your computer when it starts.  PLEASE IGNORE THE FREE SCAN OFFER.
  • Windows XP Help & How-to--help from Microsoft
  • WinPlanet--Windows Software Reviews and Downloads

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Internet Search Tools

  •  Ask-- Formerly Ask Jeeves.   "Ask.com is the #1 question answering service that delivers the best answers from the web and real people - all in one place."
  • BING--(formerly Windows Live Search and MSN Search) is the name of Microsoft's latest web search engine, designed to compete with the industry leaders Google and Yahoo!  They are calling it the "decision engine."  On July 29, 2009, Microsoft and Yahoo! announced a deal in which Bing would power Yahoo! Search.
  • blekko LOOK!!--"blekko is a better way to search the web by using slashtags. slashtags search only the sites you want and cut out the spam sites. use friends, experts, community or your own slashtags to slash in what you want and slash out what you don't."  watch video about searching using blekko
  • Dogpile -- Dogpile is a meta-search engine that searches the Internet's top search engines such as Google, Yahoo!, and Bing. When you use Dogpile, you are actually searching several search engines simultaneously.
  • DuckDuckGo LOOK!!--Gets its results from over 30 resources including including DuckDuckBot (their own crawler), crowd-sourced sites (in their own index), Yahoo! BOSS, embed.ly, WolframAlpha, EntireWeb, Bing & Blekko.  And it does not collect or share personal information.  
  • Google Search Engine --Crawler/Search Engine.  One of the largest search engines on the Internet, Google has become the pre-eminent Web search engine. 
  • More Google Search Products --Use one of Google's many services to find what you're looking for on the Web
  • Google's Special Web Search Features --check out this page for a list of Google's many advanced search features
  • Internet Search Engines -- Internet search engines are categorized by topic in this searchable directory of general and specialty search engines.
  • Ixquick -- "The world's most private search engine." (Ixquick does NOT record your IP address!)  When you search with Ixquick search engine, you are searching many popular search engines simultaneously and anonymously. Combined, these engines cover more of the Internet than any one search engine alone.
  • Open Directory --Subject Directory.  Uses volunteers to create the largest human reviewed directory on the Web.  Their slogan:  "HUMANS do it better."
  • Search Engine Colossus -- An International Directory of Search Engines.
  • SweetSearchNew--Search Engine for Students
  • Soople--let Soople help you use Google's advanced search features
  • Wolfram|Alpha LOOK!! -- Math genius Stephen Wolfram's computational knowledge engine that draws on multiple sources to answer user queries directly.
  • Yahoo!--A Portal. The oldest major directory and one of the Internet's most popular search sites. In addition to its web portal, Yahoo is also known for its search engine (Yahoo! Search), Yahoo! Directory, Yahoo! Mail, Yahoo! News, advertising, online mapping (Yahoo! Maps), video sharing (Yahoo! Video), and social media websites and services. On July 29, 2009, Microsoft and Yahoo! announced a deal in which Bing would power Yahoo! Search.

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Internet Guides

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Comparison Shopping Sites

Note: Be aware that some comparison shopping sites may highlight advertisers over non-advertisers.  To find out more about any of these sites look for their "About Us" type link and read more about the site.  In fact, this is a good idea before doing business with anyone on the Web.  Be sure they have a "real address and phone number" in case you need to get in touch with them, etc. There are many more comparison shopping sites on the Web.  Also, the Better Business Bureau is a good place to find info on companies you are going to do business with.  Below are a few comparison shopping sites to get you started.

  • AddAll LOOK!! --use this book search engine to search for any new or used book, comparing the prices and services of over 40+ on-line sites, 20,000 sellers, and millions of books.
  • Become.com--Compare Prices, Research Products and Find the Best Price with this comparison search engine designed to help consumers doing product research on the web. Become.com crawls over 3.2 billion web pages specifically from guides, expert reviews, consumer reviews, articles, specifications, forums, merchants, and a variety of other useful information to help consumers make better buying decisions. Become.com also has a "Nearby Stores" feature that allows users to plug in a zip code and get store names, addresses, phone numbers, hours and Maps.
  • BookFinder.com-- a search engine where you can search through over 100 million new, used, rare, and out of print books for sale.
  • FreeAfterRebate.Info--"the best things in life are free -- after 6 to 8 weeks"
  • Google Product Search LOOK!! --Google's product search engine.
  • MSN Shopping--Compare millions of products from thousands of stores, all in one place.
  • mySimon.com--On the net since 1998; now owned by CNET Networks.  "mySimon is a comparison shopping site for almost everything: Apparel, computers, electronics, jewelry, video games, and more. We gather prices on millions of products from thousands of stores, so you can compare products and find the lowest price before you buy."  Note from mySimon Help page:  "Some stores pay us a fee to be listed at the top of our search results, but you can always sort your results alphabetically by store, from lowest to highest price, or by merchant rating."
  • PriceGrabber.com LOOK!! --Use to find "free and unbiased information about products, services, merchants and sellers before making a purchase decision."  Be sure and click on the Merchant Coupons link to find coupons, etc.
  • Pricewatch.com--Established in 1995, this site claims to be "the Web's first and best price comparison search engine."  Also:  "More prices on tech than anywhere else!"
  • RebatePlace.com--"RebatePlace.com is an independent shopping service dedicated to helping you save money through manufacturer rebates and merchant coupons. We neither sell products nor sponsor promotions. We simply let you know what to buy, where to buy, and make sure you get the rebate or discount you deserve. "
  • SearchAllDeals.com LOOK!! --Search all deal and coupons sites at once.
  • Shopping.com--Formerly known as DealTime.com. Shopping.com, an eBay company, pioneered online comparison shopping and today is one of the fastest growing shopping destinations on the Internet. With millions of products, thousands of merchants and millions of reviews from the Epinions community, Shopping.com empowers consumers to make informed choices and, as a result, drives much higher conversion to sale and value for merchants." This site links to online auction sites too.
  • ShopSleuth.comNew--ShopSleuth recommends alternatives to your favorite stores and brands.
  • Shopzilla--the new name for BizRate.com.  Compare Prices, Product Reviews and Online Stores.
  • TechBargins--"Targeting the best deals in tech"
  • Yahoo! Shopping--"Compare prices on millions of products, read reviews & find deals from over 100,000 stores."

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Software Download Sites

  • Best Free Microsoft Downloads LOOK!!-- this amazing list of FREE software from Microsoft put together by Gizmo's Best Freeware Reviews site
  • CNET Downloads--Free software downloads and software reviews
  • Completely Free Software--Free software as well as some for members only
  • FileHippo--One of the club's favorite download sites.  Contains freeware, demo and shareware programs to download in several categories. Also features latest updates and most popular downloads.
  • Gizmo's Freeware Reviews--This community-based site is operated by Ian "Gizmo" Richards with the able assistance of over 90 volunteer site editors. No downloads but reviews and where to get the best freeware on the web.  "No downloads, just honest advice and useful guidance."
  • Ninite Easy PC Setup LOOK!!- Silent Unattended Install Multiple Programs At Once. "Ninite is the fastest, easiest way to get software. Ninite will automatically download and install multiple apps unattended and 100% hands-free."
  • Sysinternals Freeware--provides you with advanced utilities, technical information, and source code related to Windows
  • TUCOWS--one of the most popular download sites on the web

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Free Computer Utilities and Software

  • AdobeReader--download free Adobe Reader software to view, print, and search Adobe PDF files.
  • Avast Free Antivirus--one of the most popular Free antivirus programs - used by millions
  • Avira AntiVir Personal - Free Antivirus--Another very popular Free antivirus product
  • AVG Anti Virus:  AVG Free Edition--Protect your computer from viruses with AVG's Free anti virus software.  "AVG Free Edition is for private, non-commercial, single-home computer use only."
  • Best Free Software of 2013 New--From PC Magazine
  • Convert--"Convert is a free and easy to use unit conversion program that will convert the most popular units of distance, temperature, volume, time, speed, mass, power, density, pressure, energy and many others, including the ability to create custom conversions!"
  • Digital Image Recovery from ZAR LOOK!! - Use this FREE software to recover digital images from storage (typically a memory card).  It really works!
  • File Repair New--repair files damaged by virus, due to application failures, system crashes, network errors.
  • IrfanView--This is a very easy to use FREE graphics program.  "IrfanView is a very fast, small, compact and innovative FREEWARE (for non-commercial use) graphic viewer for Windows 9x, ME, NT, 2000, XP, 2003 , 2008, Vista, Windows 7."
  • Mailwasher--"The Reliable Free Spam Blocker."  "Use this powerful anti spam software, a reliable spam blocker, that will effectively stop email spam. Discover the safe way to stop unwanted e-mails before they get to your computer."
  • MajorGeeks.com--Great Site--Download Freeware and Shareware Computer Utilities
  • Microsoft Security Essentials--"...free consumer anti-malware solution for your computer. It helps protect against viruses, spyware, and other malicious software. It's available as a no-cost download for Windows XP SP2 and higher, Windows Vista, and Windows 7."
  • Mozilla Firefox--try this browser as an alternative to Internet Explorer.  Fans say it's faster and safer than IE.
  • OpenOffice.org--"OpenOffice.org is a multiplatform and multilingual office suite and an open-source project. Compatible with all other major office suites, the product is free to download, use, and distribute."
  • Password checker--Use this Microsoft Web site to test the strength of your passwords.
  • Picasa--A FREE graphics program from Google.  "Picasa is software that helps you instantly find, edit and share all the pictures on your PC."
  • PrimoPDF--"the world's #1 Free PDF creator" - Download from CNET
  • Print Friendly New--Make any web page print friendly.
  • RealPlayer--RealPlayer® SP, the best free media player, lets you download video from thousands of Web sites - free - and share what matters most with your friends on Facebook, MySpace, YouTube and Twitter.
  • Thunderbird--"Thunderbird delivers. Enjoy safe, fast, and easy email, with intelligent spam filters, quick message search, and customizable views. Brought to you by Mozilla, Thunderbird makes email better."
  • Windows Live Essentials 2011 - Download free Microsoft programs
  • Windows Live Mail 2011 --If you are running Windows 7, you may have noticed that is does not contain an email program.  Microsoft wants you to download and install their Windows Live Mail.
  • ZoneAlarm--Download a FREE basic firewall for non-business use only.

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Coupon and Deal Finder Sites

  • bradsdeals.com--online coupon codes, printable store coupons and Brad's handpicked deals.
  • CouponCabin--"Save with CouponCabin's free coupons, coupon codes & deals."
  • Coupon Cactus --coupons from over 3,900 of your favorite stores and more.
  • CouponCode.com--"where you'll find great online discounts from over 1000 stores!"
  • Coupon Mountain  --This website that gathers coupons and deals from online stores to help consumers save while bargain shopping online.
  • CurrentCode.com--"Currentcodes.com has a full-time staff of trained individuals whose only job is to find new coupon codes and discount codes and verify the accuracy of the existing database."
  • DealCatcher.com--Started in July of 1999:  "DealCatcher is an online community that helps shoppers save money and make educated purchases. On the site you will find online coupons, products, sales, reviews, and rebates. The site is updated throughout the day by its staff and forum members. We are dedicated to providing you with the tools needed to find the best deals online."
  • Dealcoupon.com--"Find coupons, rebates, and promotional codes for your favorite online stores. dealcoupon is updated daily listing the newest and most popular coupon codes."
  • Dealhunting.com--Online Deals, Discount codes, coupon codes, and more.
  • Dealighted.com--A deal aggregator site.  Deals and Coupons Search.
  • dealnews.com--Breaking News on Deals for Computers, Electronics & Gadgetry.
  • fatwallet.com--Special offers, coupons, and discounts at online retailers.
  • Groupon--features a daily deal on the best stuff to do, see, eat, and buy in more than 500 markets and 44 countries, and soon beyond (read: Space).   You do have to enter your email address.
  • RetailMeNot LOOK!! --From this site you can search coupon codes for over 90,000 stores!
  • SearchAllDeals.com LOOK!! --Search all deal and coupons sites at once.
  • slickdeals.net--Features online deals and coupons on computers, electronics, books, gifts, toys, and other products.
  • Specialoffers.com--"We offer thousands of free online coupons, free shipping deals & other special offers from many top online stores."

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Computer Security

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Recycling Resources

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Free Online Security Scanners

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Local Interest

  • Cartridge World/Sterling, IL
  • EDMENU.com LOOK!!-- Ed does websites, restaurant menus and much more.  Visit his website for all the details.  Ed is a SCUG member.
  • "The Silicon Wrench" - Computer Repair, Online Backup - Rock Falls, IL 61071. 
  • Toner Tech Plus --"Your cartridge remanufacturing experts."  Locally owned (Rock Falls), service includes FREE pick-up and delivery.

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  • You may need to install or update Java to open the Members Only page. If you cannot access the Members Only page or it opens very slowly you probably need to update or install Java.  Go to  http://www.java.com/en/, click the link on the bottom of page "Do I have Java?" and take it from there.  With the latest version of Java it should work fine.

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Instructional Videos, etc.

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Odds and Ends

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