Do the flash drives ever go bad?  I was trying to look at the designs on one of them, and the computer didn't even recognize it.  It happened with several others as well.  I tried a brand new one, and it worked fine.  They did seem to work on a different laptop, so I don't know where the problem is. 

Also, is there any kind of simple user's guide for either the free version of My
editor or  Truesizer?  I'm stumbling in the dark, and I'd be happy just to be able to open designs and load them onto a flash drive.  I've given up on resizing.  I know it's me, but it takes me forever to do the simplest tasks.  The more frustrated I get, the more inclined I am to use only designs that need no editing, and are ready to use "right out of the box".  I've tried several free programs, and since I don't seem to be able to figure them out, I certainly wouldn't purchase anything.  At one point, I had managed to open, resize and combine designs in  Wilcom, but I haven't done any embroidery in over 3 years, so It's all new again.  Even though the program is way too advanced for me, if I can do the simple tasks needed to occasionally do some embroidery, I'd be satisfied.  As I remember, there a few free classes that come with Wilcom which I never took.  Maybe I can still take one, and at least figure out the very basics?  It takes so long to do anything, that I'm tempted to give up.  It might be best to get one on one help, since I can't absorb much at one time.  Wilcom has (or had) live instruction, but it's in St. Louis, and I'm in NH.  It isn't worth the expense of going that far away.  This is definitely no more than a casual hobby, so I don't want to throw good money after bad.  Someone talked me into buying Designer's Gallery, which I didn't understand either.  I gave it away when I sold my Babylock.  Is there such a thing as embroidery program tutors?  It seems like the only way I'll be able to learn anything at all.  I don't even care what program I use, as long as I can use something!

[Bad flash drives and the misguided who love them]

If you rip off the covers and use an electron microscope you will find that inside the flash drive there is a chemical process that keeps track of whether a particular memory bit is 1 or 0. Each of these bits can be written to around 100,000 times, although the cycle gets longer with each generation. To keep areas of the drive from wearing out the drive has technology that causes the data to be written in new areas each time, spreading the wear out over the entire drive. Eventually, though, you will arrive at the point where the directory or other critical parts of the drive are no longer usable and the drive essentially goes to its reward. Note that is possible to create data loss by yanking out a flash drive without doing the "Mother May I" bit with Windows. That's because Windows does not immediately update the drive with each change, instead saving updates for a time when the machine is nearly idle. Removing without permission can cause the directory to be scrambled, causing the data to be essentially lost. There are various utilities on the market for recovering lost photos and other data, but it doesn't always work. Really flash drives are the floppy disks of the 21st century, a bit more resilient, but not infallible.

Learning software has always been a source of angst for computer users. After a brief installation process it becomes instantly available, creating the illusion that it will be obvious what to do to make it sing. In truth it WAS completely obvious to the engineers who wrote it, just as operating a nuclear reactor is completely obvious to someone who has spent decades doing it. For the rest of us, though, there is much frustration. As you have found, trying many different products in the quest for the holy grail of easy use is expensive and futile. If you haven't plumbed YouTube for help, you should. This is the age of self-help and sharing and there are videos there for some pretty obscure topics. Other sources on the web include groups like this one, but focused on specific products. Our beloved member Maggie, who should be on the Wilcom payroll, has a brilliant collection of videos covering virtually every nuance of Janome's Digitizer products. In response to questions she will dash off a new video with the same aplomb as a note for the milkman. (Milkman? Oh my, have I dated myself? You see there used to be these trucks that came every day... Oh never mind!) In an effort to preserve some part of her life, Mags does not cover the plethora of other products, or even Wilcom Truesizer, nor should she. To be effective at software support it's far better to know a LOT about one program rather than a smattering about many programs.

If you come up empty at  YouTube you should search for embroidery software that offers free trial. Buzz Tools and Embird both do this. Buzz Tools also offers product manuals. If you try something and don't like it or can't use it, you have at least wasted only time, not money.

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