July 2010
In this issue
Office 2010 - Love at First Sight!
Vacation Checklist
3 PC Ways to Get Rid of an Old PC
Delete These Scams - Now
Holding a Web Meeting?
Delete These
Scams - Now

By Kim Komando
Reprinted with permission from
Microsoft Small Business Center


How's this for amazing: A Michigan woman got a request via e-mail from someone billing himself as a Nigerian to help him steal $18 million. All she had to do was set up a bank account in the United States. And she needed to help pay some bribes and fees.

Pay she did. She is accused of embezzling more than $2 million from her employer between February and August of 2002 to finance the scheme. She planned to pay it back when she received her promised $4.5 million from her Nigerian business partner.

Read More

Holding a Web Meeting? 5 Pitfalls to Avoid
by Christopher Elliott
reprinted with permission from the
Microsoft Small Business Center


Think hard now. Can you remember your first virtual meeting? For many of you, it was in the latter decades of the 20th century, and you likely called it a "teleconference." If so, chances are you can recall how simple — but expensive — the technology used to be.

Well, virtual meetings aren't expensive anymore.

But they're still relatively simple, even if you're talking now about meetings held via the Internet instead of by phone.

Read More


Just for Laughs



Quote of the Month

I like to see a man proud of the
place in which he lives. I like to
see a man live so that his place
will be proud of him.

Abraham Lincoln


1661 Capitol Way, Suite 102
Bismarck, ND 58501
Phone: 701-250-9400



Welcome to the summer edition of the NRG newsletter. I hope you are enjoying this time of year!

Many of our clients have started their 2011 budget process and Steve Kelsch (NRG Account Manager) is traveling the state helping to plan IT budgets. He has a wealth of information to share and will help you plan your budget for 2011 and beyond. If you have not already been contacted by Steve, and need to meet soon, please call him at 701-250-9400 x 217 to schedule an appointment. It is our plan to have all the client budget reviews completed in the next several weeks.

Speaking of budgeting, did you know that older equipment can significantly increase your costs? Older PCs and servers can cost more to maintain once they exceed their expected lifecycle. When equipment is out of warranty, replacement system boards and/or power supplies often exceed the value of the entire PC. Also to be considered when scheduling equipment replacements, is employee productivity. Many times new PCs can speed up processes, making everyone more efficient. So it is not just the original price of the equipment to be considered, but also the costs involved in maintaining older equipment. NRG provides replacement schedules to help with the planning of equipment lifecycles.

As we move forward in 2010, please contact us if you are considering any major projects. The next few months typically become our busiest time, and we want to ensure that your projects are scheduled in a timely manner.

Until next time, have a wonderful rest of July!

Chris Brown, NRG Vice President

Office 2010 – Love at First Sight!
by Jane Cage, COO, HTS

As your trusted technology partner, we feel duty bound to try before you buy. How can we make recommendations to you about products we don't know how to use? It's a dirty job, and sometimes risky, but someone has to try stuff first – so we do. Our experiences at being early adopters are sometimes frustrating. We figure our pain is your gain. I have a confession to make – it's not that way with Office 2010. Office 2010 is love at first sight!

Our IT manager had us install the advance release version of Office 2010 last week. Usually there is a little pushback on new releases from our staff because "things are different". That has not been the case this time. Every user has been thrilled with the new features in 2010. The single most appreciated element has been the ability to group email by conversation. It's true that you could make that choice in Outlook before but this is a huge leap forward from that early sorting ability. Now, when I choose to view my email by conversation, the 10 email messages that went back and forth on a topic while I was at lunch are suddenly rolled up into one single entry in my inbox with a right-pointing triangle next to it. When I click on the triangle, there are all the emails that have been sent, replied all and replied again in perfect order for me to follow the thread. It almost seems revolutionary that I can have such organization in my inbox. In a funny way, I feel better about myself because my inbox is actually "neat". But, as the infomercial says, wait – that's not all. Once I realize that the email string is not relevant to me, I can click on the IGNORE CONVERSATION button and the string disappears along with any future emails that hit my inbox related to that topic.

Read More

Vacation Checklist: Prepare your PC
used with permission from Microsoft at Work

Whether you're leaving the office for the holidays, going on vacation, or taking a business trip, there are a number of things you can do to prepare your computer for your time away. Canceling appointments and letting people know you'll be gone are just a few of the things you can do to make sure your responsibilities are covered and people aren't trying to meet with you. Here are some best practices to make sure your work goes on smoothly, even when you're gone.

Decline upcoming meetings
Decline or cancel any upcoming meetings that are scheduled while you're gone. Co-workers will not expect you to be at meetings and will know not to attend recurring meetings you run. To decline a meeting using Microsoft Office Outlook 2003 and 2007, simply complete the following:

1.  Open the meeting occurrence and click Decline.
2.  If you're the organizer of the meeting, either send a cancellation or arrange for a co-worker to run the meeting.
◦To cancel the meeting in Outlook 2003, open the meeting occurrence and in the Actions menu click Cancel Meeting.
◦To cancel the meeting in Outlook 2007, simply select the meeting tab and select the Cancel Meeting icon.

Read More

3 PC Ways to Get Rid of an Old PC
by Kim Komando
used with permission from the Microsoft Small Business Center

Are you getting a new PC, or a set of new PCs for your business? If so, the question becomes: What do I do with that old clunker?

Don't just cart it off to the nearest dumpster and help clog up some landfill with electronic waste. There are better, more environmentally-friendly options to consider.

First of all, someone could use your old computer. Or maybe you could trade it in on a new one. At the least, you could pay a small fee to a recycler to take it off your hands.

Let's look at three ways to dispose of an old computer.

1. Give it to charity. Many charities would love to take your old computers. They refurbish the machines and give them to people for whom a new computer is just a dream. True, they're a little picky about what they'll take. If you have a museum piece that's been sitting in the basement 10 years, they don't want it. The machine has to be able to run modern software. But if your old clunker is no more than three or four years old, someone will want it. Virtually all of these organizations take Windows machines; some also take Macs. Obviously, running machines are preferred. If yours is broken, ask. It may still be wanted. Finding the proper organization is the key. To do that, contact the National Cristina Foundation, which has affiliates in all 50 states. Both PCs and Macs are welcome. Another good place to start is Gifts in Kind International (http://www.giftsinkind.org).  It specializes in distributing used business computers to charities. If you can't find a charity, ask around your neighborhood. Last year, I gave an old computer to a neighbor who lost her job and her computer. It was too slow for me, but she was very pleased. She's still using it.

Read More

Email Marketing by