Printer sizing can make up for those marginal shifts

December 11, 2005|By JAMES COATES

Q. When I print a displayed page from the Internet I lose a half-inch or so of the text from the right side. I still have a margin on the right in the printed material.

The page is fully displayed on the monitor. I am using Internet Explorer in Windows XP.

-Irv Kuntz

A. Printing Web pages gets us into these kinds of scrapes because they are laid out by the HTML programming code used for Web sites rather than the conventional margins one sets with a word processor or other local software.

The quickest trick is to change your layout setting for printing from the default portrait mode to landscape mode. This, of course, means less information on each page, which is both wasteful and annoying to read.

The fix that most often works is to change the settings in your printer's own software that sizes pages by percentage. Reducing the display from 100 percent to 80 percent easily fixes problems with half-inch margins.


Sometimes this reduce/enlarge command gets a bit hard to find, but most printers include it in the Properties settings. To find your settings, go to the Printers and Faxes control panel by clicking on Start and Control Panel. Give the icon for your printer a right-click and look for a button called printer preferences. This is where you will find the reduce/enlarge adjustments.

Q. Is there any software that will allow users to copy just certain programs and files from one hard drive to another?


A. The most popular software for doing this kind of transfer between an old computer and a new one is PC Relocator Ultra from AlohaBob at This gets popular whenever people buy new computers but don't want to mess with setting them up as they did with the old machine.

The PC Relocator line of products comes with various assortments of parallel cables for printer ports and USB cables to connect two computers together for data transfer.

The Ultra Control version for $69.95 comes with cables and permits many more options for picking what to keep and what to abandon than does the company's flagship product - PC Relocator for $29.95 without cables.

The software is built around databases of how the most common programs are installed to allow transfers of variables like Windows registry settings, required dynamic link libraries and preferences such as the screen color and font sizes for individual programs.

I know that you asked about transferring stuff from one hard drive to another hard drive, but you need to have each drive on a different computer to make the copies. That's because the software works through the printer and serial connectors of the motherboard holding a computer's circuitry instead of directly from drive to drive.

Also you should note that the relocator software will only move the latest version of a program, which means that if you have earlier versions of software that you upgraded, the earlier stuff won't be moved.

Got a question on personal technology? Send a note to Jim Coates at Questions can be answered only through this column.

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