Tech Links and Information
How to download library titles with Amazon's Basic Kindle or Kindle App
How to download with Barnes & Noble's Nook
How to download with iPad, iPod, iPhone and Android Devices including Nook Color and Kindle Fire
Do you wish to bypass the Domesticate Your Mouse prerequisite for registering for computer classes? Take this online mousing test or call the Technology Center at 588-5024 x232 to schedule a brief test of your mousing skills. (Scroll down to find the MS Word test.)
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Media Conversion Services
Media Conversion FAQs
(Frequently Asked Questions)
Do you have old VHS tapes or audiocassettes that you want to convert to a newer format? The library has acquired two new machines for just that purpose. Library patrons can make appointments to learn how to use these machines to convert VHS tapes to DVD and audiocassettes to CD. Call the library at 588-5024 x 232 to make an appointment. Keep those memories alive for years to come.
Q. How much does it cost to use these conversion services?
A. The only fee involved is the cost of the blank media you will need. There is no service fee or hourly rate.
Q. What kinds of media can the library's machines convert and to what format?
A. We have acquired two different conversion machines, one to convert VHS tapes to DVDs and another to convert either audiocassettes or vinyl records to CD.
Q. I don't know anything about the machines or how they work, is there someone who can help me?
A. You will be instructed on the use of each machine the first time you use it. Instructions will be laminated and available for referral. If you have any problems using the equipment, a staff member will come to assist you.
Q. I have several VHS tapes, how many can I do in one session?
A. It depends on how long each tape is. Sessions are 2 hours (up to 3 hours if nobody is waiting to use the machnine) and the conversion process requires playing the videocassette at regular speed. If you have 3 tapes that are each 1/2 hour, you will be able to transfer all three. There is a short amount of additional time required for the finalization of the new DVD so it will play on other machines.
Q. If I have 3 short videocassettes can I put them all on one DVD?
A. A DVD-R will accept approximately 2 hours of video. If the total time of the short videos is less than 2 hours, you should have no problem putting them all on one DVD.
Q. I have a small format videocassette from a video camera, will your machine copy those too?
A. The system is only designed to handle standard VHS tapes, but you may be able to successfully convert a small format videocassette if you have the carrier that allows you to play the small cassette in a regular VCR. Unfortunately, some people have encountered problems with those carriers.
Q. Do I have to bring in my own blank CDs or DVDs?
A. While we do provide blank media at our cost, you're welcome to bring in your own blank media. The audio conversion machine takes CD-Rs. The video conversion machine takes DVD-R or DVD+R media. Although the video machine will also take DVD-RW discs, we do not recommend their use.
Q. How do I know if I need CDs or DVDs?
A. If you are converting audio materials, you need CDs, for videos, DVDs.
Q. I have a lot of videos to convert, can I make several back-to-back appointments?
A. No, due to the expected high demand for these services, at this time we permit only two 2 hour scheduled sessions per week. This may change to allow for more or less as we determine the level of usage the machines get each week. We do limit the amount of time used to 3 hours per day.
Q. I have several old vinyl records, will your conversion machine take out any noises that dust or scratches might produce as the records play?
A. The turntable unit of the audio converter is a standard audio turntable using a regular stylus (needle). Any hiss, pops or skips that occur during the playing of the records will be recorded onto the CDs you create. For best results the records should be dust free and unscratched.
Q. I have a collection of Disney videocassettes I would like to convert to DVD, is there anything special I should know?
A. As with many commercially recorded videocassettes, Disney videotapes may have a built-in copy protection protocol and the converter will almost definitely not allow a DVD to be created from those tapes. We cannot and will not assist in attempting to bypass their copy protections or otherwise breaking copyright.
Q. I have some Super8 movies from my parents, can I convert them at the library?
A. We have no equipment capable of converting any film type media. That means no 8mm, Super8, 16mm movies or photographic slides or negatives.
Q. Is the service available whenever the library is open?
A. The machines are available during all of the library's open hours, but the last 2 hour appointment each day will be no later than 2 hours before the library closes. However, in any case it is the user's responsibility to finish their current conversion before the library closes each day. We are currently unable to make assisted appointments on Sundays due to staffing restrictions.
Q. Can I pay somebody to do the conversions for me?
A. Being a self-service operation, we cannot make accommodations for you paying to have conversions done for you. Several Long Island commercial companies do offer conversion services for a fee.
A Beginner's Guide to Windows 8
Windows 8 is a real change of pace from previous Windows operating systems. With many features best-suited to a touch screen device, new users are often at a loss of how to proceed. This Beginner's Guide will help you get started and learn the ins and outs of Windows 8.
Follow this link to go to SimpliGuide's Beginner's Guide to Windows 8
Microsoft's Windows 8 Tutorial
Microsoft has some excellent, easy to follow tutorials that can be very helpful in learning to use Windows 8. Follow this tutorials web link to learn more.
Back Ups in Windows 8
Q. Is the File History software in Windows 8 a full backup program for the whole computer, or do I need to buy additional backup software?
A. The File History utility included with Windows 8 does not fully back up all the files on the computer. It does automatically back up the files you probably care the most about, though, like photos, documents and other items in your Windows libraries, as well as your contacts, your browser favorites and SkyDrive files. With File History, you can get back previous versions of those files, including those that were accidentally deleted from the computer.
You can find File History in the Windows 8 control panel, or you can quickly search for it. To search the computer for the File History utility, press Windows + C on the keyboard or click the right corner of the screen to bring up the Windows 8 “Charms” menu; on a touch-screen computer, put your finger on the right edge of the screen and slide it toward the middle. Select the Search icon on the Charms bar, type in “File History” and choose Settings. Select “File History” when it appears in the list to open the control panel.
Like most backup programs, you need another drive to store the File History archive. You can use an external USB drive or a network location, and Microsoft has instructions for setting up either method on its site.
Although File History has largely supplanted the older built-in Windows backup program, you can still find it on the computer. In the bottom left corner of the File History control panel, click the link for “Windows 7 File Recovery” to open the old Windows backup utility. If you prefer less poking around inside Windows, you can always get a third-party backup program.
From the New York Times Gadgetwise blog. 3/1/2013
Basic Word Bypass Test
|If you are familiar with the use of Microsoft Word 2010, you may wish to bypass the "Beginning MS Word" workshop that is a prerequisite to taking most of our intermediate and advanced level workshops. To do so, complete the requirements of the test that follows and we will contact you with the results within a week. Please remember that Microsoft Word 97-2003 is quite different from 2007 and 2010.|
1. Copy and paste the text in the yellow box below into your version of Word
2. Save the file in Word’s default file format with the name: Saloon
3. Run the spelling and grammar command and fix all the typos
4. Highlight the title and change the font to either Broadway or Baskerville, make it size 26, and Bold
5. Highlight the body of the document and change the font to Times New Roman, size 12
6. Highlight the third paragraph and change the paragraph alignment to Justified
7. At the bottom of the text, type your name, the barcode number on your library card, and your daytime phone number
8. Attach the file to an email addressed to email@example.com with the Subject: Word Test
|San Francisco in the 1850’s|
How To Upgrade To Windows 8
Until January 31, 2013, Microsoft is allowing computer users upgrade from Windows XP, Vista, and Windows 7 to Windows 8 for just $39.99. If you are running a genuine version of XP, Vista or Windows 7, you can follow the link below to the instructions on how to handle your Windows 8 upgrade.
Windows 8 Upgrade Instructions
The 10 faces of computer malware
Although it is written for IT people, this fairly comprehensive article may give you some deeper insights into what malware is and what it can do to your computer.
Click here to read the article as a PDF document.
Tech30 - Tech help in 30 minutes or less
Is there a particular website that you just can't seem to figure out? Do you have a problem with your email or with using a Microsoft Office product like Word, Excel, Publisher or PowerPoint? If you have a specific computer-related question that has been troubling you, then you might benefit from a 30 minute, one-on-one tech session.
A Tech30 session is an individualized session with a member of our Electronic Services staff. These sessions are designed to address a specific technical issue you may have, not as a class on using a particular application. If you should need an introduction to any of the Microsoft Office applications, please visit the library's online program calendar to view our upcoming workshops.
We offer walk-in assistance on Mondays from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Thursdays from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. and Fridays from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. Please call 588-5024 x 232 to make sure a Tech30 staff member will be available.
Download, fill in and carry in or mail this form to the "Technology Center" at the library address.
Windows 7 Tips Every User Should Know
Gizmodo is the go-to authority for gadget news and digital culture. Here is a link to Gizmodo's Windows 7 tips.
Home Printing Disaster? Try Print @ Library!
Now you can print your documents on our printer. If you can go online, you can print your documents to a printer in the Library's Technology Center. Whether you have run out of ink or toner, had a paper jam you just can't clear or simply want the clarity of a laser printout, we can help.
From the Library’s Home or Adult Page click on "For Your Convenience" and then choose the "Print @ Library" link. Follow the directions to send your document to our printer, and then come in to release your print job and pick up your printouts. You must come to pick up your printouts at least 15 minutes before closing. If you happen to be printing a large number of pages (over 30), you will want to come earlier in order to allow time for the job to print and be verified.
How do I print from a mobile device like an iPad?
To print an email message or attachment, simply forward or send your email to
You will be sent a release code for the email message and each attachment. Use these release codes to retrieve your documents. Email forwarding is ideal for online email portals such as Yahoo!, Hotmail or Google Mail.
Printouts are $.25 per page, black and white or color. Speak with one of our helpful Technology Center staff members for more information.
Organizing Your Windows Start Menu
The Windows Start menu lists programs in alphabetical order by default, but if you would prefer to arrange things in your own way, you can override the alphabet. Just right-click on the Start button, choose Properties from the contextual menu and click on the Start menu tab in the Properties box. Click the Customize button, scroll down and remove the checkmark from the box next to “Sort All Programs menu by name.” Click O.K. to close the Properties box and apply the new settings. You can now drag programs into your preferred order on the Start menu.
Free eAudiobook and eBook Downloads
eAudiobooks are downloadable titles that you can play on your home computer or transfer to your compatible portable device. eBooks are books you can read on your device. These are two of the free download services provided to patrons by the Sachem Public Library. To take books on the go, or simply read or listen from the comfort of your own home, visit http://go.live-brary.com/downloads.
All you need is your valid Sachem Public Library card and you are set to start downloading books, music and even videos! Take a look, it's sure to become one of your favorite web destinations.
We now offer eBooks for your Amazon Kindle devices!
Below you will find links to instructions on using our downloadable content for your own devices.
Document and Image Scanning in the Technology Center
Need to email a document that you only have on paper? Do you have a printed photo that you need to post on a website? Our Technology Center can help...
One of the services we provide to our users in the Technology Center is image scanning. If you have an old photo you would like to save, edit, print or share, our helpful Technology Center staff will scan documents onto your storage device for only $.50 per scan. Paper documents can be scanned to attach to emailed resumés or store for future use. Bring your USB flash drive to store the image or buy a reasonably priced flash drive in the Technology Center. Floppy diskettes are not suggested due to the limited space available on diskettes and their fragile nature. Speak with one of our helpful Technology Center staff members to find out how.