Frequently Asked Hotline Questions

  1. How do I set up my office printer?
  2. What if the printer isn't listed or is unknown (autodetect)?
  3. I'm trying to connect to the internet, but I get this 'Network Registration' thing? What's that?
  4. How can I make PDF files from a Word, Excel or Powerpoint document?
  5. How can I disable wireless on my laptop when I'm not using it?
  6. How do I set up Outlook for Exchange email?
  7. Why do I need an administrator password?
  8. How do I log in as administrator?
  9. Why is my computer so slow?
  10. How do I set up personal folders and/or archiving in Outlook?
  11. How do I check my email when I'm on the road?
  12. How do I get a Staff Cookie?
  13. What do I do when I'm preparing to leave my position?

How do I set up my office printer?

If you're currently using Windows XP as your operating system, follow the instructions for installing network printers for Windows XP. You will need to be logged in as administrator (and know your administrator password) to install a printer.

If you're currently using Windows Vista as your operating system, follow the instructions for installing network printers for Windows Vista.

What if the printer isn't listed or is unknown (autodetect)?

New printers will generally come with a CD containing printer drivers.  If you don't have a CD available, you can get the appropriate driver from the printer manufacturers' web site. 

I'm trying to connect to the internet, but I get this 'Network Registration' thing? What's that?

If you have a new computer (never been on the Extension network) or if you have a computer that has been off the network for 60 days, you will need to register it for the network (NetReg or Network Registration). Usually, when Network Registration is required, a page will come up (https://netreg.iastate.edu) when you first access your web browser. However, if you plug in the computer and go to email first rather than a web browser, it will simply tell you that it can't access your email.

You will need to login with your Net-ID and password, complete the registration page, and reboot your computer.

How can I make PDF files from Word, Excel or Powerpoint documents?

If you're currently using Office 2003, you'll need an additional program (Adobe Acrobat) to create PDF files. Adobe Acrobat also allows you to edit PDF files and convert them from PDF to (for example) .doc files.

If you're currently using Office 2007, you can add a free plug-in which will allow you to save your Word, Excel, and Powerpoint files to PDF. Note: You will not be able to edit these files or save them to another format. For that, you will need Adobe Acrobat version 8.

How can I disable wireless on my laptop when I'm not using it?

If you have your laptop directly connected (via ethernet cable) to the Internet, you may want to temporarily disable wireless connections. Direct connections are usually faster and disabling wireless ensures that your connection to the internet is through the faster direct connection rather than through the wireless connection.

To disable wireless (depending on your laptop model), type Fn F2 or turn the wireless switch to 'off'. To re-enable wireless, type Fn F2 again or switch the wireless switch to 'on'.

How do I set up Outlook for Exchange email?

If you're using Outlook 2003, you can follow these instructions.

If you're using Outlook 2007, it's mostly automatic.

Why do I need an administrator password?

Computers on the ISU Extension Network are set up as part of the IASTATE domain. This means that they are NetRegged to operate on the network and that they require users to log into the domain with your Net-ID to access programs and documents. When you're logged in to the IASTATE domain, you are a Power User (in Windows XP) or User (Windows Vista) for all ordinary operations. Operating with what's referred to as 'limited privilege' (meaning that you can't install programs or change certain settings) makes you much less vulnerable to malware (bad software) and other security breaches.

It also means that you must be logged in as administrator to do certain things--install progams, install printers (Windows XP), uninstall progams, etc. For this, you will need to set a strong administrator password and remember what that password is. Simple passwords can also create security issues.

How do I log in as administrator?

On a Windows XP machine, you will need to log out as yourself (either 'Restart' or 'Log off') and log in as 'administrator'. Type in your administrator password and change the 'Log onto' prompt to the option that contains '(this computer)'.

On a Windows Vista machine, you will frequently not need to log off at all--when you install many progams or make specific changes, User Account Control will open a window asking you to enter your administrator password, once this is typed it, Vista will carry out the action requested. If you do need to log in as administrator, you will have the option to 'Switch Users' as well as the options to 'Log off' and 'Restart'.

Why is my computer so slow?

If your computer is running slowly, you should check the following:
  • How many progams are you trying to run at once?
  • Is your computer downloading updates, data, progams while you're doing other things?
In addition, you might also check:
  • Is VirusScan up to date?
  • Is Windows Update up to date?
  • How much memory does your computer have?
  • How old is your computer?
  • How much hard drive space is available?
  • Have you checked for spyware with AdAware or Spybot?

How do I set up personal folders and/or archiving in Outlook?

To set up personal folders or arching n Outlook 2003, you should check out: Managing Space and Using Personal Folders

How do I check my email when I'm on the road?

You can check your email on the road via Outlook Web Access. Details can be found in: Using Outlook Web Access

How do I get a Staff Cookie?

You can get a Staff Cookie here.

What do I do when I'm preparing to leave my position?

There are several steps you should take to ensure smooth business continuity and protect your personal privacy. View suggested actions.