Homefront Reporter | June 2005

Link to Offering advanced technology with a personal touch


SP2 Automatically Downloaded
Important Info For Windows XP Users

3 Rivers Offers $4,000,000 Capital Credit Distribution
Read On

Ask The Help Desk
When Was A Web Page Last Updated?

Sites Of The Month
Great Sites To Check Out In June!

Short Tutorial
Locating Hard-To-Find E-mail Messages


Welcome to the Homefront Reporter

The summer season has finally arrived! June is the perfect time to take that long awaited family vacation and to spend more time outdoors. This month's eNewsletter gives you ideas on recreational destinations along with map resources to help get you there. Travel safely, do some hiking and biking, and build some lasting memories with your family this month.

The goal of each of our monthly eNewsletters is to keep our subscribers informed regarding their Internet connection and to improve their Internet experience. To meet this goal, each monthly newsletter will usually contain information related to:

  1. Warnings on a recent virus or e-mail hoax that may affect you
  2. An update on new services and other local interests
  3. An answer to a frequently asked Internet related question
  4. Some fun, seasonal websites to check out
  5. A short, step-by-step tutorial on an e-mail or browser related task

We think you'll find the information contained in this newsletter to be a valuable tool for enhancing your Internet experience. If, however, you'd prefer not to receive these bulletins on a monthly basis, click HERE.

To see what's inside this issue, take a look at the index to the left and thanks for reading!

- The Homefront Reporter Team

SP2 Automatically Downloaded - Important Info For Windows XP Users

Many Windows XP users have noticed the recent inability to see graphics within incoming e-mail messages. That's because Microsoft has now made its Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2) a "required critical update" for all people using Windows XP. One of the "features" of the SP2 software is that it blocks images from being displayed within incoming e-mail messages. (See below for information on changing your settings to allow images to reappear within e-mail messages.)

More About Microsoft's Recent Automatic SP2 Update

As of April 12, 2005, anyone using the Windows XP operating system that had not previously downloaded SP2 onto their computer was forced to do so. This was accomplished through Windows XP's Automatic Update feature which is "turned on" as a default setting on all Windows XP systems. Thus, it's highly probable that if you use Windows XP, SP2 has been downloaded onto your machine whether you've requested it or not. Once this download occurs, however, users must then install the software to activate it. For installation instructions, see: http://www.microsoft.com/technet/prodtechnol/winxppro/maintain/sp2aumng.mspx

Why SP2 For Windows XP Operating Systems?

Microsoft's Windows XP Service Pack 2 is a security software update for Microsoft's popular Windows XP operating system. Costing almost one billion dollars to develop, this free and huge (200 megabyte) software download promises to make users of Windows XP much safer from cyberattacks. SP2 adds protection by closing entries to viruses, increasing spyware barriers, and improving the safeguards of users' personal data.

SP2 Does Not Replace The Need For Third-Party Virus Protection

Windows XP Service Pack 2 DOES NOT REPLACE the need for third-party a) Virus Protection, b) E-mail Filtering, or c) Firewall Protection. If you use third party anti-virus software programs from companies like Symantec and McAfee, for instance, you'll still need to continue to regularly update your software and scan e-mail attachments for viruses as you've done in the past. SP2 does not include robust protection in these three areas.

So Why Am I Unable To See Graphics Within Incoming E-mail Messages?

One of the protective features added to Outlook Express for those Windows XP users who have installed Service Pack 2 (SP2) is the blocking of images being displayed within incoming e-mail messages. However, it's not nearly as much fun to receive an e-mail message from a friend or source you trust unless you can also view the message's graphics and images. Microsoft provides an easy option to allow images to appear within messages, either on a per e-mail basis or for all e-mail messages. To see the graphics within messages on an e-mail-by-e-mail basis, with your Preview Pane open, do the following:

  1. Click your cursor arrow on the gray bar located just below the subject line of the message. It will say, "Some pictures have been blocked to help prevent the sender from identifying your computer. Click here to download pictures." If you click anywhere on that gray bar, the pictures for that particular e-mail will appear for as long as you have that e-mail open.
  2. If you go to a different e-mail and then come back to this message, you will need to click on that bar again to see the images within the message.

Note: If you don't see the gray bar, open the message in its own window and follow steps one and two above. Otherwise, click your cursor arrow on the "View" menu and drop down to "Layout." When the "Window Layout Properties" window appears, make sure "Show preview pane header" is checked.

If you want to be able to see all pictures on all incoming e-mail messages that contain images, you can disable this blocking feature. Here’s how:

  1. Go to the Outlook Express "Tools" menu and drop down to "Options."
  2. When the "Options" window appears, click on the "Security" tab. About half way down the window, you'll see an item titled "Download images." You will see a checkbox next to the words "Block images and other external content in HTML e-mail." If you uncheck this box, it will allow images to be viewed again just like before your SP2 update.
  3. Click "Apply" and then "OK" to save your new settings and close the window.

Note: If you do not have the Automatic Update feature activated on your system and would like to do so, go to this link for step-by-step assistance: http://www.microsoft.com/athome/security/protect/windowsxp/updates.mspx. If you use Windows XP and are not sure whether SP2 has been downloaded and installed onto your computer, go to this link for more information: http://windowsupdate.microsoft.com.

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3 Rivers Offers $4,000,000 Capital Credit Distribution - Read On

Beginning June 1, 2005, members of 3 Rivers Telephone Cooperative, Inc. (dba 3 Rivers Communications) are eligible to take a discounted cash-out of the entire balance of their individual capital credit account.

As a cooperative, 3 Rivers does not keep "profits" in the same sense that other businesses do. Most funds in excess of operating expenses are transferred to a capital credit account. All funds in the capital credit account are guaranteed to be paid to the members, although the timing of that payment is determined exclusively by the Board of Trustees. Annually, the Board determines the amount to be returned based upon the financial health of the Cooperative, the cash needs, financial performance, and balance sheet impact. Capital credits are normally returned to members based on the oldest year's capital credits on record.

Every member's capital credit account exists as a "Future Value" account. This means that if your account balance is $5,000, it is only worth that amount at some point in the future. It may take 30 or 40 years for the company to complete payment. In many cases capital credit accounts end up as estate assets, and still take years to completely pay out. But this year, you are being offered an opportunity to clear your unpaid capital credit balance!

3 Rivers will accomplish this through a voluntary process known as a "Discounted Cash Buy Out". Discounted buy outs are a standard financial tool, which allow offering a percentage of a future value account as cash today. In the case of 3 Rivers, the cash today offer is 20% of your future value account, through December 31, 2004. So if we take that $5,000 mentioned earlier, you now have a choice; you can wait to collect your capital credits in full over a period of many years, or you can take $1,000 today! Then you can make an individual decision as to whether you will invest, pay some personal bills, or just spend your money. It's entirely YOUR CHOICE!

The obvious question then, is, "What is my future value, and what will I get today if I take this offer"? There are two easy places you can get that information. First, you will receive a mailing roughly June 15 showing you exactly this information. Second, if you happen to miss seeing the mailing, or simply lose it, you can call a telephone Customer Service Representative at 800-796-4567 (467-2535 in Fairfield) and get the same information.

SHOULD you exercise your option and take this offer? We can't really answer that question for you. We CAN tell you it would help the Cooperative if you do. Your personal situation should be reviewed by you, your family, your business partners, and any financial advisor you use. The offer is open until the goal of $4,000,000 is distributed, or December 15, 2005, whichever comes first, on a first come, first served basis. For additional information visit www.3rivers.net/capitalcreditFAQ, or call 800-796-4567 and ask for a mailed or faxed copy of the Capital Credit Frequently Asked Questions sheet.

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Ask The Help Desk - When Was A Web Page Last Updated?

Question: Sometimes it's important to know how current the information is on a web page. Is there a way to find out when a web page was last updated?

Answer: Yes, this can be especially important if you are visiting news-related web pages, stock market sites, or other time sensitive websites.

A simple method of finding out when a page was last updated is to go to the page in question and then type (or copy and paste) the phrase below into the address bar replacing the site's web address:



A box will appear telling you the date and time of the last update. This trick doesn't work on all websites and will only work if your browser is java-enabled (which it probably is). However, in most cases this technique will provide helpful results. Head to a couple of your favorite web pages and give it a try!

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Great Sites To Check Out This Month

Locate Recreational Opportunities Before Next Vacation
http://www.recreation.gov/ -  If you are planning a vacation this summer and want to check out some of our nation's great recreational opportunities, the federal government provides this in-depth informational site to get you started. Recreation.gov allows you to search for recreational areas by state, by recreational activity, by agency, or even by map. Have a great trip!

Google Now Offers Map Images Taken Via Satellite
http://maps.google.com/ -  You've probably used MapQuest.com for map information or driving directions. Now Google.com has gone one step further. It offers maps and driving directions but also provides actual satellite images of addresses you input. Simply go to maps.google.com, type in your Uncle Bob's home address in Toledo, click on the "Satellite" link toward the top right corner of the page, use the zoom feature on the left side of the page, and then check out his house!

Get Involved In A Kitten War
http://kittenwar.com/ -  No, this is not a site showing cat fights. It's a site filled with images of cute kittens where you vote on your favorite feline. Hundreds of pictures of kittens have been submitted. Check out the photo list of the top ten "winningest kittens," the ten "losingest kittens," and the ten most recently submitted entries. Upload your own favorite kitten photo and let the voting battle begin!

Herbie: Fully Loaded Movie Released This Month
http://disney.go.com/disneypictures/herbie/ -  This month Walt Disney Pictures presents the fifth feature film in the Herbie series that started with the popular movie, The Love Bug, back in 1969. This time the adventurous Herbie takes on the world of NASCAR! The film stars Lindsay Lohan, Matt Dillon, Michael Keaton, and Justin Long. Dale Earnhardt, Jr. even makes an appearance. Herbie: Fully Loaded is rated G for general audiences.

LPGA's Open Hosted By Colorado
http://LPGA.com -  This month marks the 60th anniversary of the longest running event currently on the Ladies Professional Golf Association Tour. The U.S. Women's Open will be held June 23-26 at Cherry Hills Country Club in Cherry Hills Village, Colorado. In last year's exciting event, eventual champion Meg Mallon held off Annika Sorenstam by two strokes. Both will be competing this year for their share of the event's $3.1 million purse. Check out this site for the latest news and stats concerning the LPGA.

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Short Tutorial - Locating Hard-To-Find E-mail Messages

Have you ever tried to find an e-mail message in your inbox folder that was sent to you months ago but you can't recall the name or e-mail address of the sender? Plus, your search for key words that were possibly included in the subject line of the message hasn't given you successful results. Well, don't despair. You can also search for key words within the actual message pane windows of e-mail messages located in your inbox folder (and your other folders as well). Depending on how many messages are stored in your inbox and how specific your key word search is, there's a good chance of quickly finding the exact message that you're looking for. See the step-by-step tutorials below.

Outlook Express 6.0 and Windows XP

  1. With Outlook Express open, click your cursor arrow on your "Inbox."
  2. Click on the "Edit" menu, drop down to "Find," and then select "Message" from the submenu. The "Find Message" dialog box will now appear.
  3. Where it reads "Look In," the location should say "Inbox." Make sure the box is checked beside "Include subfolders."
  4. Look for the field marked "Message" and type your keyword(s) into it. Those words will be searched for in the body of your message. Remember, the more words you put into that field, the narrower your search will be.
  5. Click the "Find Now" button. The results will be shown in a frame at the bottom of the window.

Mozilla's Thunderbird 1.0 on Windows XP:

  1. With Thunderbird open, click your cursor arrow on your "Inbox."
  2. Click on the "Edit" menu and drop down to "Find." Select "Search Messages" from the resulting submenu. The "Search Messages" window will appear.
  3. Make sure it says "Search for messages in: Inbox on Local Folders" and that "Search Subfolders" is checked.
  4. Select "Match any of the following."
  5. Locate the pane that includes three fields. One will be called "Subject," one will be called "contains," and the third field will be blank. Click on the word "Subject" and a drop down menu will appear with other options. Select "Body" from this list. Leave the field that says "contains" as it is. In the blank field, type in your keyword(s). Remember, the more words you put into the field, the narrower your search will be.
  6. Click the "Search" button and the results will appear in the lower pane of the window.

Mail.app 1.3.9 on Macintosh OS X

  1. In the search field on your Mail.app tool bar, click on the letter Q with the downward pointing triangle next to it.
  2. A drop-down menu will appear with a number of options listed for either the mailbox you are currently in or for all mailboxes. Select "Entire Message" and type in your keyword(s).
  3. A list of messages that include the keyword(s) you typed will appear in the message list.

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We hope you found this newsletter to be informative. It's our way of keeping you posted on the happenings at our shop. If, however, you'd prefer not to receive these bulletins on a monthly basis, click HERE.

Thanks for your business!

Best regards,

The Homefront Reporter Team
3 Rivers Communications Internet
Offering advanced technology with a personal touch

3 Rivers Communications
12 Division East Rd
PO Box 429
Fairfield, MT 59436


(We have used our best efforts in collecting and preparing the information published herein. However, we do not assume, and hereby disclaim, any and all liability for any loss or damage caused by errors or omissions, whether such errors or omissions resulted from negligence, accident, or other causes.)

©2005 Cornerstone Publishing Group Inc.

Trademarks: All brand names and product names used in this eNewsletter are trade names, service marks, trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective owners.