Alexander’s Blog

July 29, 2014

Is Your Word 2013 Spell Checker Not Working?

by @ 10:52 am. Filed under Articles, Microsoft Office, Tools/Utils

Having spelling errors in a document can be pretty embarrassing, especially if you are sending a proposal to a client or a resume for employment. Have you ever seen errors in a resume when someone is applying for a job as a tech writer or copy editor? Errors or typos in a resume are one sure way to disqualify yourself from any position. I ran into a situation where my spell checker stopped working in Word 2013. Here’s the problem and my solution.


Today I discovered that the Word 2013 document that I was working on was ignoring my spelling mistakes. I realized that the spell checker was working fine in my other Word 2013 documents so there was something in this document that was causing the spell checker to not work. The interesting thing is that when I would run the spell checker, it would report that “Spelling and grammar is complete. You’re good to go.” despite the fact that I had misspelled words in the document.


I copied the entire document to a new Word document but the spell checker still failed. At least at that point I knew that the problem is not all across Word 2013, it’s specifically in the document.


This is the solution I used that worked for me. Depending on your situation, this solution may or may not help but thanks to the article Word Spell Check Woes, it gave me a clue that led to the fix. The article has some other solutions that you may find helpful.

  1. I selected the entire document (CTRL+A) and then on the Review tab I clicked Language -> Set Proofing Language. This brought up the following box.
  2. I made sure that my language (English – United States) was selected, somehow it wasn’t highlighted like it is in the screenshot.
  3. I also noticed that the box Do not check spelling or grammar had a small black square in the middle, as if it was selected but not quite. I removed the small black square to make sure the box was clear as it is shown in the screenshot.
  4. I also left the Detect language automatically box checked.
  5. I clicked Set as Default and then at the prompt Do you want to change the default language to English (United States) I clicked Yes.
  6. This enabled the spell checker and everything was to normal.

In some cases, due to formatting or some other reason, you may have part of the document, such as a paragraph where the spell checker is disabled. This can cause a problem because if you copy and paste the paragraph at another location within the document or even in another document, you just spread the problem in other places.

Moral of the Story

So moral of the story is, if your default language is not set or you have the box Do not check spelling or grammar selected, your spell checker may not work.

Copyright ©2014 Zubair Alexander. All rights reserved.

July 27, 2014

Facebook Used Members in a Secret Psychological Test as Guinea Pigs

by @ 12:27 pm. Filed under Articles, News

So what’s Facebook up to now? Well, it was recently revealed that Facebook conducted a secret emotional psychological test in 2012 on 700,000 of its own members. This comes after years of privacy concerns, FTC privacy lawsuit settlement and ongoing criticism of lack of security on Facebook. If you recall, even Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s fan page was hacked.

In this latest episode, Facebook was accused and has admitted of using its own members as test subjects for a secret psychological test. According to The Wall Street Journal, Facebook’s Chief Operating Officer (COO) Sheryl Sandberg told reporters “This was part of ongoing research companies do to test different products, and that was what it was.” and was “poorly communicated.” Here’s what The Wall Street Journal reported:

“The experiment was the work of Facebook’s Data Science team, a group of about three dozen researchers with unique access to one of the world’s richest data troves: the movements, musings and emotions of Facebook’s 1.3 billion users.

The little-known group was thrust into the spotlight this week by reports about a 2012 experiment in which the news feeds of nearly 700,000 Facebook users were manipulated to show more positive or negative posts. The study found that users who saw more positive content were more likely to write positive posts, and vice versa.”

Facebook issued a mea culpa through its COO. According to CNET: Facebook’s Sandberg: We ‘really regret’ our secret-test misfire. The article has some interesting background on how this secret test came about and what the Facebook researcher who was in charge of the testing program had to say.

“In January 2012, researchers from Facebook, Cornell University, and the University of California at San Francisco conducted a study called “Experimental Evidence of Massive-Scale Emotional Contagion Through Social Networks.” During the course of the study, without publicly disclosing what it was up to, Facebook altered the News Feeds of 689,003 random users to show either more positive or more negative posts — and thus possibly altered their emotional states, with the goal of finding out whether good vibes or bad would be contagious.

On Sunday, Adam Kramer, the Facebook researcher in charge of the program, issued a blog post in response to the sharp criticism.

“I can understand why some people have concerns about it, and my coauthors and I are very sorry for the way the paper described the research and any anxiety it caused,” Kramer wrote on Sunday. ” In hindsight, the research benefits of the paper may not have justified all of this anxiety.”

Facebook has been criticized for its privacy violations so many times that it’s hardly a “news” anymore. In 2012 Federal Trade Commission announced that it has accepted a settlement with Facebook resolving charges that “Facebook deceived consumers by telling them they could keep their information on Facebook private, and then repeatedly allowing it to be shared and made public.” Here are a couple of posts that I wrote about Facebook and the privacy issues in 2012 and 2013.

  1. Facebook Faces Yet Another Class Action Lawsuit
  2. Survey Finds 60% Facebook Members May Quit Over Privacy Concerns

I don’t know of a company other than Facebook that has faced a lawsuit for tracking people even when they have completely logged out of their account. Facebook knowingly violates privacy and does things that it knows it can get away because what is the FTC going to do? Fine them a few billion dollars? Do you know the net worth of Facebook’s founder? Do you really think Facebook cares about what they would consider piddly issues?


Here is some of the press coverage on Facebook’s psychological testing.

  1. New York Times: After Uproar, European Regulators Question Facebook on Psychological Testing
  2. The Guardian: Facebook apologises for psychological experiments on users
  3. Windows IT Pro: Secret Facebook Test Riles Users
  4. CNET: Facebook’s Sandberg: We ‘really regret’ our secret-test misfire
  5. The Register: OMG, sorry about ‘poor comms’ on Facebook secret emoto-meddle tests. Laters!

The Facebook saga continues……

Copyright ©2014 Zubair Alexander. All rights reserved.

July 25, 2014

How to Fix the Windows Update Error Code 80072EFD

by @ 11:35 am. Filed under Articles, Troubleshooting, Windows 2000, Windows 2003, Windows 2008, Windows 2012, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows Vista, Windows XP

You may receive the following error while trying to run Windows Update on your computer.

Code 80072EFD. Windows Update encountered an unknown error.


If you click Get help with this error link, here’s what it says.

Windows Update error 80072efd

If you receive Windows Update error 80072efd while checking for updates, it usually means that a program running on your computer is preventing Windows Update Services (SVCHOST) from accessing the Internet. Programs that might do this include firewalls, antispyware software, web accelerators, Internet security or antivirus programs, and proxy servers.

To correct the problem, you might need to add the Windows Update website addresses to the blocking program’s exceptions or to its “allow” list or you may have to allow Windows Update Service to connect to the Internet through port 80 and port 443.

To add the Windows Update websites to a firewall exceptions list
Windows Firewall ships with this version of Windows and should already include these sites in the exceptions list. If you use a different firewall, refer to the software publisher’s Help to see how to add these websites to your firewall exceptions list:



For more information about firewalls, see What is a firewall? or Understanding Windows Firewall settings.

If the problem persists after you have added the Windows Update websites to your firewall’s exceptions list, go to this Knowledge Base article on the Microsoft Help and Support website or go to the Microsoft Update Solution Center website to request support by e‑mail.

Error codes:






As the help file indicates, there is something on your computer (or the network) that is preventing it from getting to the Internet. It could be your firewall, network configuration, IP configuration on the computer, a problem with the router, network policy, etc. Follow the instructions in the Help file. The bottom line is, you need figure out why you can’t connect to the Internet.

Copyright ©2014 Zubair Alexander. All rights reserved.

July 15, 2014

How Many Free Microsoft eBooks Would You Like? How About Over 275?

by @ 8:22 pm. Filed under Cloud Computing, Dev, Exchange/Outlook, Lync, Microsoft Office, Office 365, Scripting, SharePoint, SQL Server, Tips & Tricks, Virtualization, Windows 2012, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows Azure

If you like eBooks, especially free ones, then you must be delighted to know that Microsoft Senior Sales Excellence Manager Eric Ligman has posted a link to more than 275 free eBooks from Microsoft on his blog. According to him, this is the largest collection of free Microsoft eBooks ever and includes eBooks for Windows 8.1, Windows 8, Windows 7, Office 2013, Office 365, Office 2010, SharePoint 2013, Dynamics CRM, PowerShell, Exchange Server, Lync 2013, System Center, Azure, Cloud, SQL Server…….well, you get the idea. The list is rather long.

You can even download Eric’s Microsoft Info Partner Mobile App for Windows Phone. It includes hundreds of Microsoft resource feeds, including Eric’s blog.

The only question I have for Eric is, do you really need a 280-character URL for your blog post? All kidding, aside, his efforts to provide such a valuable resource is appreciated by millions. Apparently more than 1 million people downloaded these free eBooks in just 2 days. Click on the image below to read his blog post and download the free eBooks.


July 7, 2014

How to Add RSS Feeds to Office 365

by @ 6:19 am. Filed under Exchange/Outlook, Microsoft Office, Office 365, SharePoint, Tips & Tricks

Unlike Microsoft Office Outlook, the Office 365 version of Outlook (Outlook Web App) doesn’t support RSS Feeds. At least as of today it doesn’t support this feature but there is always hope that Microsoft will add this feature in the future. In the mean time here’s how you can add the RSS Feed to a page in SharePoint Online, which is part of Office 365.

  1. Edit the page.
  2. On the insert tab click Web part.
  3. In the Content Rollup category select RSS Viewer.
  4. In the RSS Viewer Web Part click Open the tool pane.
  5. In the RSS Feed URL box type the address of the RSS Feed. For example, the RSS Feed URL for my blog is You can also adjust the feed refresh time and the feed limit, or accept the defaults that are shown in the screenshot and then click OK.
  6. The latest blog posts are now visible in the RSS Viewer and are update based on the frequency you chose.AddingRSSFeed04
  7. Save the page.

Copyright ©2014 Zubair Alexander. All rights reserved.

Contact E-mail | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy

Copyright ©2002-2013 Zubair Alexander. All rights reserved.

Internal Links

Search Blog



July 2014
« Jun    

RSS Feeds

TechGalaxy Visitors

25 queries. 0.549 seconds