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Yesterday's Help File -- in which I outlined how to get your songs from your iPod to your computer and explained how to turn off pop-up previews of Web links offered by some pages--provoked an unusual reaction: none.

No e-mails, no phone calls.

Three possible explanations come to mind:

1) I wrote something so clear and comprehensive that nobody needed to ask for further help. (I don't think this has happened yet in the two and a half years that I've been writing Help File.)

2) I wrote something so overwhelmingly boring that nobody was able to maintain consciousness long enough to finish the thing. (Can't rule this one out, unfortunately.)

3) The Internet's broken and e-mail isn't getting delivered anymore. (Not true, as the part of the Internet that sends me spam seems to be its usual efficient self.)

Or it could just be that you all have worn out your typing fingers in replying to some of the earlier blog posts here. The item on Windows Vista's defenses against pirated copies has drawn the most comments of them all, 36 so far. Some aren't exactly surprising, such as all the "Windows stinks, get a Mac/Linux" responses. But only one person offered any evidence of Vista incorrectly labeling an installed copy as illegitimate (and that was a secondhand story.)

I was most interested to see the number of comments stating, in so many words, that Microsoft had every right to protect itself from theft. After reading them, I think I left out a worthwhile question in my own posting: If you give a company the right to do something about the theft of its products--as you should--how far should it go?

By Rob Pegoraro  |  February 11, 2007; 11:36 PM ET
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Oh, rest you anxieties: your column was clear. To move files from iPod back to iTunes, I use iPodDisk 1.3 ( and found it Apple-simple, intuitive and FREE. It works fast, even over AirPort, but doesn't carry some info (rating, last played...).

Posted by: | February 12, 2007 10:44 AM | Report abuse

I read the iPod piece ... it was *very* clear, interesting and informative. Please don't take my silence to mean lack of interest or appreciation for the info.

Keep up the good work!!

Posted by: DC reader | February 12, 2007 12:31 PM | Report abuse

well, what we really want to know is how to hook our ipods up to our xbox 360s (or how to get xbox to recognize them as cds) - any ideas?

Posted by: jj | February 12, 2007 2:42 PM | Report abuse

Another possible explanation is that those of us who are only moderately tech savvy are still trying to figure out the RSS thing and really, REALLY miss the email newsletter...

Posted by: Wauwatosa, WI | February 12, 2007 4:41 PM | Report abuse

On my copy of the WP-Tech web page there wasn't a "help file" link under your name.

Am I missing something?

Posted by: cab | February 12, 2007 6:45 PM | Report abuse

Rob, don't feel so downtrodden !
All of us really love what you did and are
doing. Most probably 'Wauwatosa' has it right : we miss the ole style of your support....
Maybe "Fast" was better than "Faster", at
least for the majority of us 'moderately savvy'.

Genoa (Italy)

Posted by: Giorgio Montagna | February 12, 2007 6:54 PM | Report abuse

I don't have an ipod so it made no sense to me. I am debating getting one but have read so many negative comments online that I can't make up my mind. The short battery life as well as the issue of having to work through iTunes is offputting to a low tech person.

Posted by: Cricket | February 12, 2007 7:49 PM | Report abuse

don't have an iPod... how about addressing firefox and it's propensity to hang up... uploaded to the new version and still having problems.... also, which is the best site for pix... seems like the digital slr people prefer fldkr.... also... how do I clean up Mom's computer?

Anyway... those are the things on my mind... thanks...

Posted by: Mimi Sardini | February 13, 2007 12:16 AM | Report abuse

This happened to address a problem I have right now. Of course I ddin't see it until you complained about the lack of reponse, but that's OK. It looks like the solution to my problem.

Posted by: bilrus | February 13, 2007 11:36 AM | Report abuse

You asked "If you give a company the right to do something about the theft of its products--as you should--how far should it go?"
The company should take whatever steps it feels necessary, but they need to realize the limits of the customer.
(eg. we all don't like the fort knox packaging used today or the "check the receipt" person at the door) These are examples of going to far.

Posted by: JS | February 13, 2007 12:56 PM | Report abuse

I have AOL highspeed and I tried to receive RSS but AOL does not accept it. Enjoy what I read of your writings though.

Posted by: toad8642 | February 14, 2007 10:13 AM | Report abuse

I'm still in XP and will be until I get a new computer. Security features that give me grief when I have to reinstall after a disk crash are too much. I've paid for the program; I should be able to install it as often I as need to. Despite what the companies think, very few of us go around advertising "I've got the new XXX and I'll give you a copy!"

Posted by: abock | February 14, 2007 5:19 PM | Report abuse

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