Tip: Using QuickParts (AutoText) In Word 2010 – Wichita IT Support

Wichita IT Support Tip for May 9th, 2011

Using QuickParts in Word 2010

Is there something you type over and over again in Microsoft Word.  Just like your signature in Microsoft Outlook, you can automate some of your repetitive wording to save time and effort when you create documents. 

Let’s look at the easiest way to automate something.  I’m going to start with the signature line I use all the time at the bottom of quotes and bids. 

Step 1: Type the information that will become your AutoText:

Signature Lines to Be Converted

Signature Lines to Be Converted

Step 2:  Highlight the text and click on the Insert Menu.

Step 3: Look for the QuickParts icon and hover over AutoText.

Step 4: Click Save Selection to Autotext Gallery.

Add to the Autotext Gallery

Add to the Autotext Gallery

Step 5:  Give it a name in the box that pops up.  You can examine the categorization options later!

Step 6:  When you next need to use the Autotext, repeat going to the QuickParts option, and look for the preview of the entry you created.  Click the preview to add it to your new document.

Selecting the New AutoText

Selecting the New AutoText

Play around with it and see how much time you can save by automating some of the things you normally type!

If you’re looking for IT support or network consulting in the Wichita area and want to find a certified expert without breaking the budget, call Proper Technology Solutions at (316) 337-5628.  Our computer experts can be onsite quickly or respond to your needs remotely starting at $70/hour with no minimum service charges.

Applications, Business, IT Support, Tips , , , ,

Tip: Read it Out Loud With Adobe Reader – IT Support Wichita

Running short on time to read those important documents?  To keep current as an IT support professional I end to have to read a large number of books and white papers about current technologies.  The time involved sometimes gets in the way of other endeavors.  Though far from a perfect solution, one choice I often make is free and simple to implement.

Adobe Reader files (with the .PDF file extension) are very common.  The latest versions of Acrobat Reader used to view and print these files support the ability to have the file read out loud by a computer generated voice.  Admittedly, it’s not perfect, but I’m able to get the gist of what it is saying as it reads the text and it allows me to do something else while I digest it.  It’s one of those things that you have to take some time to get accustomed to before you will appreciate what it is doing.

So if you haven’t used the feature before, let’s take a quick look at a sample and how to turn on and off the feature.

Step 1: First, let’s see what version of Acrobat Reader is installed on your system.  Right-Click here to open the sample file save it to your desktop.

Step 2: Open the sample file and click on the help menu.  Look for an About option; it will be different depending on the version.  If you have anything other than Adobe Reader X visit Adobe and click the Get Adobe Reader button.  This new version has some increased security features over older versions, and I recommend that everyone update as soon as they can.

Step 3:  With the file still open, click the View menu, then Read Out Loud then Activate Read Out Loud.


Adobe Read Out Loud Options

Adobe Read Out Loud Options

Adobe will read the document out loud.

Step 4:  You can return to the Read Out Loud menu above to access the other features, or click Stop to turn the feature off.

 If you are looking for IT support solutions in Wichita and surrounding areas, give us a call at (316) 337-5628.  We can provide affordable, professional network consulting and computer repair for small business starting at just $70/hour with no minimum service charges.  Our certified technicians can resolve your issues or recommend upgrades on site, over the phone or through remote control.  Whether you need simple computer troubleshooting, network design or full technology support, we can help your systems run more effectively and efficiently.


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Tip: Use The Search Bar in Windows 7

Wichita IT Support Tip for May 4th, 2011

Today’s tip is all about a little time-saving feature in Windows 7 that I don’t see enough people using, myself included.   How many applications are installed on your laptop or workstation?  Does it take an IT support technician to find anything in the Start Menu?  Instead of drilling down into the menus searching for what folder your shortcut resides in, leverage the search bar.

The search bar in the Start Menu searches your computer, including the items on your start menu.  Just a few letters may help you zero in on your shortcut, without drilling down into the menus themselves.

Step 1: Click on the Start Flag at the bottom-left of your screen to pull up the Start Menu.

The Windows 7 Start Menu

The Windows 7 Start Menu

The cursor shows up by default on the search bar at the bottom.

Step 2: Let’s say I’m looking for the Disk Defragmenter program.  I can drill into the menus: Start -> All Programs -> Accessories -> System Tools and there it is.  The alternative is using the search feature.  When I type ‘dis’ into the search box, here are the results (without even having to press enter:

Results of the Search

Results of the Search

There it is, right under Disk Cleanup (We’ll talk about that in a later tip!)

You’ll be surprised at how much time this will save, especially for items you dont’ use all the time.  The items you use regularly will be added to the main menu automatically.

Wichita IT Support

If you’re looking for small business IT support services in Wichita and surrounding areas, contact us at Proper Technology Solutions at (316) 337-5628 or our after hours support line at (316) 210-7112.  We can help your business cut costs all while maintaining an efficient and effective computer network.  Our consultants are college educated and certified by most major vendors, so you can be assured that the service you receive will be first-class.  From simple computer repair and maintenance to full IT consulting and network design, let us help you make IT work for you.

Business, IT Support, Tips , , ,

Wichita IT Support Gets Hectic

Sorry for the lack of posts over the past few days.  Things were a little hectic last week and are starting the same way this week.

Last week I attended a round table conference at the Software and Information Technology Association of Kansas (SITAKS).  The event was held in Lawrence on the KU campus and was a great opportunity to learn and share.  It was designed as a way technology leaders and educators could come together to discuss what Information Technology employers need from their prospective employees.  Being a member of both groups, I felt it was a perfect fit for Proper Technology.  The discussion was lively and focused mainly on the need for good talent to remain here in Kansas.  Many employers are worried that qualified employees will leave their company for greener pastures in Silicon Valley.  The 24-40 age group was identified as a demographic of employees that would be more likely to plant (or keep) their roots in Kansas.

In other notes, I’m seeing some growth in the IT services side of the business.  By providing low network consulting rates and eliminating minimum service charges, we’re aiming to help small businesses lower their support costs while still maintaining effective technology.

If you are a small business owner or manager looking to reduce your support costs, give me a call.  I can schedule a free onsite visit to evaluate your technology and find ways to help you keep costs under control.  Call Proper at (316) 337-5628.

Look for a new tip here tomorrow!

Business, IT Support

Tip: Wichita IT Support – Quick and Dirty Rules with Outlook 2010

Wichita IT Support Tip for April 27th

As an IT support provider, our job is to make your life easier.  One of the ways we can accomplish that goal is to help you get the most out of your applications.  If you’re only using Microsoft Outlook to send and receive emails, you’re missing out on a host of great features.  You don’t have to be a network consultant or systems engineer to perform some simple time-saving tasks with this powerful email application.


Rules are Outlooks way of determining just what exactly you want to do with a particular email when it comes into your inbox.   Though there are a variety of options, we’ll just deal with the most basic, then leave you with some information to let you experiment with the rest.

Say you want to move all email coming in from one person or group to a folder.  My own use of this is for newsletters.  I want to get them and read them, but I don’t need to have them cluttering up my mailbox every morning distracting me from more important items.

Let’s move a newsletter automatically into a folder under the inbox.

Creating a Move Rule

Step 1:  If you don’t already have folders under your inbox, now is the time to create one.  Right-click on your inbox in Outlook and choose New Folder.  For this example, I’ll be creating a folder to move my Morning Call emails from the Wichita Business Journal to a folder I’ll name Morning Call.

The image below is the window that allows you to give a name to the new folder.  It also allows you to place the folder where you want it.  If you right clicked on the folder you wanted it in (inbox), it will automatically be placed by default.

Naming the New Folder

Naming the New Folder

Step 2:  Find the email or newsletter you want to serve as an example of what you want moved.  I’m right-clicking on the WBJ Morning Call email.  Hover over the Rules option to open the flyout menu.  For our example, I’m going to choose the top option, Always move messages from…


Choosing 'Always Move..." from the Rules Menu

Choosing 'Always Move..." from the Rules Menu


Step 3:  The next window will ask you where you want to move the emails.  Select the folder you created above and click OK.  The new rule will automatically run on your inbox.

Step 4:  Click on the new folder to see the emails.  Any new email from that sender will be deposited directly to this folder.

If you want to explore these options more in-depth, click the Home tab in Outlook 2010 and look for the Rules icon.  From the dropdown, select Creat Rule.  Explore the options for how you can select items, and what you can do with them.  This is an easy way to create rules to rid yourself of unwanted email.  Don’t want to see email from someone?  Just create a rule to move it to the Deleted Items folder, or delete it completely.

If you have any IT support questions or needs from virus removal to new equipment and network design, call Proper Technology Solutions at (316) 337-56

Applications, IT Support, Tips

Wichita IT Support – Executive IT Services

We are in progress of launching a new IT support service for customers in Wichita and surrounding areas.  Executive IT support is designed for business leaders and small business owners with the goal of providing onsite service in home and at their business location.  Most small business owners perform their work not only on their office machine, but on their home machine as well.

Executive IT Support Benefits

As network consultants and information technology professionals, we can provide home and business users with the following benefits:

  • Personal one-on-one support – We can visit your home or office and verify that your computer system is running optimally, allowing you to complete your work efficiently and effectively.  If there’s a problem, we’ll discuss resolutions and get you back up and running in no time.
  • Personalized training – Make a list of your computer questions.  One of our trained technicians will sit down with you one-on-one and help you to resolve them.  Anything we can’t resolve or answer immediately will be researched and passed on to you.
  • Professional technicians – All our support personnel are college-educated and professional.  We perform criminal background checks on all in-home service workers so you can be confident and assured that your technician is suitable for your home.
  • Hardware and software recommendations – We can recommend new hardware and equip your home with a new system custom-designed to meet your needs.
  • Certifications from major vendors – All our suppor professionals are required to hold and maintain industry certifications on technology from vendors such as Microsoft, Cisco and Dell.

If you are looking for IT support services for your business or home in Wichita and surrounding areas, call Proper Technology Solutions at (316) 337-5628.  We will discuss how our low service rates starting at $70/hour with no minimum charges will help you keep your technology under control.

Business, Executive IT Support, IT Support

Tip: Wichita IT Support – Using SmartArt in Word 2010

Sometimes you want to spice up a report in Word but aren’t a graphic artist.  I know the feeling.  Though my art skills are lacking, I get around in Microsoft Word pretty well and there are a host of great built-in tools that can allow me to look the part.


The SmartArt feature is one of those tools.  This tip will serve as just an overview, encouraging you to take a look around at this powerful feature.  I encourage my IT support customers to take a little bit of time whenever possible to explore their software.  Once you’ve purchased it, you might as well use it!

Step 1:  Open a blank Word document.  Look for the SmartArt button on the Insert tab under Illustrations.

SmartArt under Illustrations on the Insert Tab

SmartArt under Illustrations on the Insert Tab

Step 2:  Click the SmartArt button and browse around the options available.

SmartArt Options

SmartArt Options

Step 3: After you’ve looked around at the possibilities, choose Pyramid from the menu on the left and select Basic Pyramid.

SmartArt Basic Pyramid

SmartArt Basic Pyramid

Step 4: Type your custom text into the available boxes when the box appears:

Customizing the SmartArt

Customizing the SmartArt

If you double-click on one of the text items above, you’ll get the standard editing box:

Edit Controls for the Line

Edit Controls for the Line

Step 5:  Highlighting various areas of the pyramid will let you customize the text and the background color.  Use the bucket (fill) icon to change the color of the box.  Here’s my edited pyramid:

Finished Pyramid

Finished Pyramid

 This was created with just a few minutes of editing time.  What can you accomplish?

If you are looking for outstanding IT support in Wichita and surrounding areas, call Proper Technology Solutions at (316) 337-5628. We can assist your business in cutting costs and maintaining or expanding your IT infrastructure. With our low rates starting at $70/hour with no minimum onsite service charges, we can help keep costs under control while improving the effectiveness and efficiency of your organization.

Applications, IT Support, Tips

Wichita Technology Support – Class Notes

We hosted our first Lunch and Learn class, Office 2010 – Business 101 at our offices at Office Park Plaza yesterday and I believe it was a success.  The attendees learned a little bit more about being productive with the Microsoft Office suite and lunch from Jason’s Deli was on time and perfect.

Many thanks to the attendees from ITT Technical Institute, agents from Prudential Dinning-Beard, International Monetary Systems, Costlow Rentals and Office Park Plaza! 

I will be reaching out and testing the waters to determine what next month’s class will cover, as we hope to be able to offer this service on a monthly basis.  If you have any suggestions, please leave a comment or give me a call.

On a different note, it was pointed out to me that my picture was in the paper yesterday.  Thanks to George Hornbeck from Wedel, Thurman & Hall for sending me the picture:

Wichita Eagle, 4/21/2011

These chamber mixers are a great opportunity to meet other business owners and employees.  Thanks to the Chamber for providing these great opportunities.

Look for a new IT support tip on the blog Monday as I get back to my normal posting schedule.  If you have any suggestions, drop me a line.

For IT support in Wichita and surrounding areas, call (316) 337-5628 or our after hours support line at (316) 210-7112.  We can discuss how a Wichita technology support company like ours can help you lower costs and downtime by offering certified technicians at low hourly rates starting at $70/hour.  We have also listened to local small business owners by removing minimum onsite service charges.

Business, IT Support

Tip: Customize a Template in Publisher – Wichita Computer Support

Most of our advertising material at Proper Technology Solutions is created in Microsoft Publisher 2010.  As a small IT support company in Wichita, we try to produce as much value from our software investments as possible, and one of our goals is to empower our clients to see the same benefits.

We use a lot of free online templates as the basic framework for our publications.  With a little modification, they can be re-used over and over again to support our ever changing needs, be they for network design information or invites to one of our computer support training functions.

Today’s tip will focus on how to grab a template from the online libraries, customize it to fit your needs and save it in a format you can use to create multiple documents in the future.

Step 1: Open publisher and choose the File tab along the top, then choose New.

Choose File, then New in Publisher

Choose File, then New in Publisher

Step 2: For our example, look for Advertisements under More Templates and click the link.

Advertisements under More Templates

Advertisements under More Templates

Step 3: In the search box at the right, we’ve entered Real Estate to narrow our search.  We are going to work with the Just Listed Postcard.

Choosing the Template

Step 4: When you highlight the template, a description and Download button will appear on the right of the screen.  Click Download to grab the template.

Template Download Link

Template Download Link

Step 5: A new document is created with the template layout.  Take some time to experiment with customizing the document with your business information and logos.  For more detailed instructions, ask us about one of our more in-depth training sessions.

Step 6: When you’re done customizing, let’s choose File then Save As.  In the Save As Type field, choose Publisher Template.  Give the file a name you can remember and save it.

Save as Type Drop-down

Step 7: Let’s close our example document and click File then New again.  In the Available Templates section, look for My Templates.

My Templates in Publisher

My Templates in Publisher

Step 8: You now have a list, which includes the template you saved in Step 6 above.  When you want to create a new postcard, open the template, then choose Save As and save it as a new Publisher document with a new name.  Your template will remain unchanged and you can modify just the information needed.

For all your IT support needs in Wichita and surrounding areas, call Proper Technology Solutions at (316) 337-5628 or our after hours support line at (316) 210-7112.  We can customize one-on-one or group training events for most applications and provide network design, computer maintenance and more with low rates and no minimum service charges.

Applications, Business, IT Support, Tips , ,

Wichita IT Support – Stop By for Free Training

Let’s face it, some of the calls people make to their IT support company involve situations where a little technical knowledge could go a long way to let them resolve their own issues.  Application support is one of those situations.  Microsoft Office is powerful suite of tools to help you with daily tasks, but it can certainly become complicated as you try to leverage some of the features.  If you are looking to learn a little more about Office and eliminate some of those extra phone calls, we have the opportunity for you.

Free Lunch And Learn: Office 2010 – Business 101 April 21st, Noon-2pm

(Printable Flyer Here)

Bring your lunch and a laptop or just a notepad and join us as we discuss some of the features of the major Office applications.  This is an informal training session designed for new users, or users that are just using the basic features of these applications.

Check out the flyer above for more details or call us at (316) 337-5628 to reserve a spot, as space will be limited.

We are planning on offering monthly classes, starting with a more in-depth look at each of the applications we will be briefly covering this month.

For IT support and network consulting in Wichita KS and surrounding areas, Proper Technology Solutions offers a full suite of services tailored to provide your small business with the keys to your information technology success:

  • Efficiency –  We can make your systems run faster and work harder for you and your staff
  • Reliability – Preventive maintenance, upgrades and monitoring will ensure your systems acheive maximum uptime
  • Affordability – By offering low hourly rates starting at $70/hour with no minimum service charges, your business can receive the IT support it requires without delay


    Applications, Business, IT Support , ,