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Issue #332: December 1, 2013

Q: I have similar problems as the vgrabber issue in a recent column (Issue #328, November 3, 2013) and I tried what you suggested for the chrome user and it did not work.  Is there a difference in Google Chrome?  My computer has windows xp running internet explorer 8.I had Firefox and it quit working after some downloads so I deleted Firefox but it still shows up on add remove programs but I can`t remove it.

– James B.
Fort Walton Beach, Florida

 A:  The web browser named Chrome is published by Google, so whether someone says “Chrome” or “Google Chrome” they are talking about the same thing.  If you followed the procedures to remove VGrabber from your computer, it should not be possible for it to show up in either Chrome or Firefox, because it should no longer be present on the PC.  So, if you’re still seeing it, retry those directions – you apparently made an error somewhere.  The following instructions will remove it from the browser, but it will still be present on the computer:  1) Enter “chrome://extensions” (without the quotes) into Chrome’s address bar.  2) If you see VGrabber in the list of installed extensions, click on the trash can icon to remove it.  3) Click “Settings” in the list on the left side of the window and find the “Search” section.  Click the “Manage search engines…” 5) In the Search Engines dialog that appears, select your desired search engine from the list and click the “Make default” button.  6)  Remove the VGrabber search engine by clicking on the “X”, then click OK.

Regarding your Firefox problem, it’s difficult for me to tell exactly what you did when you say “I deleted Firefox”.  If you mean you simply deleted its files, that would be why it still shows up in your list.  If you used the “Add/Remove Programs” function to do a proper removal and it still appears in your list, then there was some error during the removal.  That’s a rather technical problem having to do with the registry.  Check out the article from Microsoft at for some help on safely dealing with this issue.

Q: Whenever I try to go to your recently mentioned tinyurl address (Issue #331, November 24, 2013) I’m redirected to a Google Earth location on 21st Ave, in Cedar Rapids, IA. What am I doing wrong? I type “” in the address block of both Firefox and Internet Explorer and get the same effect each time. I tried it on my Google Chrome notebook and got the same result.

– Kris H.
Fort Walton Beach, Florida

A: What an interesting problem.  Unfortunately, the solution isn’t nearly as interesting.  There’s a typo in the URL as you entered it.  The second-to-last letter is supposed to be a “z” not an “x”.  This does, however, illustrate the very useful nature of  If you look at the length of the URL that your error took you to, you can easily see how much easier it is to handle the TinyURL version.

If you ever have problems with the links as they appear in the newspaper, please visit my web site at  In the columns that publish there, the embedded URLs are all clickable hyperlinks, so you needn’t worry about getting all the letters right.

From the Shameless Plug Division of Geek Central: Readers in my local area of Niceville/Fort Walton Beach Florida should make plans to come out and see Season Six of the Geek Lights on the Corner!  The 2013 edition of my animated Christmas lights and music show premiers tomorrow night – Monday, December 2nd.  For complete information about the show, directions and schedule, visit our webpage at

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