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Instructions & Frequentlyback
Asked Questions

Q: I'm new here. How do you get a user name and password?

A: The web site is designed to work alongside seven books that you can buy: puzzles@file-online, magic@file-online, friends@file-online, jokes@file-online, internet@file-online, art@file-online and wildlife@file-online.

Each book comes with a secret code that allows you to access additional pages that are available on the web site. You can then print the pages, cut them out, and add them to your book (using the 6-clip binder mechanism).

If you don't have a book and a password, you can still make use of the message board and the games on the site! [return to top]

Q: Help! I can't find the secret code number file-online.com book.

A: The secret code can be found on the first page of the "User Site" section (the last section of your book). In most books, that's page 111, but in some books it's 107 or 109. [return to top]

Q: Where do I enter my my secret code and user name?

A: You only need your User Name and Secret Code when you want to download pages.

Each book has it's own "Download Area" with little pictures and short descriptions of the pages that are available to download.

  1. from the Home Page, click on the picture of the book you have (Magic, Friends, Wildlife, etc)
  2. click on the word "Downloads"
  3. The most recent downloads are listed on this page; use the tabs near the top of the page to see what else is available for the different sections of your book.
  4. click on the picture of the page you want to download.
  5. a little box should now come up on your screen with a place to type in your User Name and Password. (Your User Name is the SHORT name of your file-online.com book - "magic" or "wildlife" for example. Your password is the 5-digit number on the first page of the User Site section in your file-online.com book). Make sure you type your User Name all in lower-case letters (like this NOT LIKE THIS).
  6. Click OK
  7. Depending on how your computer is set up, you will either see the download page on your computer screen (it might take awhile to load) or you will be asked to save the file somewhere on your computer's hard disk.

To view and print these download pages, you need to already have Adobe Acrobat Reader installed on your computer. It's often pre-installed on many computers and is available for free from www.adobe.com. You might also already have it on a CD (either a program CD you have or one of the ones that come with PC magazines or from your internet service provider). See "How do I get Acrobat Reader?" below.

When you can see the pages (online or offline using Acrobat Reader), you can print it or save it to your disk for later. [return to top]

Q: I have been trying to sign in to file-online.com but it keeps saying that I have an invalid password or something is wrong.

A: The first thing you need to check is that you are typing the correct user name and password. Make sure you fill in the boxes the right way:

Your User ID is the SHORT name of the book. For example, if your book is "friends@file-online.com", then your user name is just "friends". Make sure you type all lower-case letters - like this and NOT LIKE THIS or LiKe ThIs (and don't include the quotation marks).

Your Password is the secret 5-digit code number from your book. It's on the first page of the User Site section.

Also, the password will not work for any of the other file-online books; each has a unique secret code.

And remember that you need to have Adobe Acrobat Reader installed on your computer to view and print the download pages. See "How do I get Acrobat Reader?" below. [return to top]

Q: How do I download pages?

A: First of all, you need to make sure that you have Acrobat Reader (version 3.0 or above) loaded onto your computer. If you're not sure, read the next section.

If you have got Acrobat Reader, you're ready to go. Just click on an image to get the pages you want. You'll be asked for a user name or ID (type in the title of the book eg. puzzles) and your secret code number. If the pages you want appear on screen straight away, choose File and then Print. (Make sure the "Fit to page" box is unchecked to get the pages at the right size for your file-online.com organiser.) If they download to your hard drive, you will have to click on them like a normal file to open them up, before you can print them. Now all you have to do is cut out the pages, punch holes through the small circles, and fit the pages straight into your file-online.com book! [return to top]

Q: How do I know if I've got Acrobat Reader?

A: Click Start then Programs and look for Adobe Acrobat. If you're using a Mac, try looking in your Applications folder. Or just type 'Acrobat' into your Find window and search your computer to see if it's hidden anywhere.

If you're really unsure, ask someone else who uses that computer.

If you find that you do have Acrobat Reader - great. You can start to download pages straight away. If you don't have Acrobat Reader, please see below. [return to top]

Q: How do I get Acrobat Reader?

A: You need to download it off the Internet, or find it on a software CD, and then install it.

Start by looking on any free software CDs that you've been given with magazines. If you find Acrobat Reader, double click on it. (Exit your Internet browser first.) Follow the instructions on screen and click Next to continue. These instructions should take you right through until Acrobat Reader is installed in your system. Eject the disk, log back on to file-online.com, and follow the instructions to download the pages.

To get Acrobat Reader off the Internet, click the button at the bottom of these instructions. (Read them first so you know what to do!) This will take you to the Adobe web site. Don't worry, it's free to download Acrobat Reader!

Follow the instructions on the web site to download the correct version for your PC or Mac. When it has finished, go offline (exit your browser) ready to install it. Click on the Acrobat Reader icon that is now stored on your computer (remember where you stored it!) and follow the instructions on screen. Click Next to continue until it is safely installed. Now you can log back on to file-online.com and follow the instructions to download the pages. [return to top]


Q: When I try to print out pages for my book, they come out at the wrong size! I even unclick the "fit to page" check box and it does not work! What's happening?

A: We've had a number of people complain about this. We think this happens with some users when they try to print the pages from their web browsers. Try saving the page to your computer's disc then using Acrobat Reader to open and print the pages. Here's how:

  1. Go to the download pages that you want to print. (enter User Name and Password)
  2. When the page fully loads, click on the little disk icon in the lower menu bar (or select "File>Save..."
  3. Choose a place on your computer to save the file. The Desktop will do for now (or anywhere else where you can the file later). Make a note of the file name, in case you have to find it later.
  4. Log off of the internet, exit your browser.
  5. Find the file you saved in step 3 and double-click. It should open in Adobe Acrobat Reader.
  6. You should now be able to view and print the pages at their normal size.

It's also worth double-checking your print settings to make sure that your pages are set to print at 100% and that you don't have the "fit to page" option selected.

If you have an older version of Adobe Acrobat Reader, upgrading might also help. Version 3 should be fine, but we recommend version 4 or 5.

You can download the most recent version of Acrobat Reader from Adobe's web site. See "How do I get Acrobat Reader?" above. [return to top]

Q: I tore out my last section by accident and lost the password/code to friends@file-online.com. I was wondering if you could give me the code.

A: We'll send you the code if you can either:

  1. send a fax of one of the other pages in the book. If you don't have a fax machine at home, maybe your mom or dad can fax it from their work place. Fax: +44 1394 386011. Mark it "Attn: Webmaster"
  2. email a scan of one of the other pages in the book. If you have a PC and a scanner, just scan a page from your book, save it (as a gif, jpg or bmp) and attach it to an e-mail to me ().

Then I'll send you the code and you can download whatever you want to! [return to top]

Q: I'd like to buy a file-online.com hole punch/ruler. Can I?

A: If you live in the United Kingdom, you can order our books and the hole punch from our Shop page. If you live anywhere else, you'll have to wait a little bit longer . You'll soon be able to use a credit card to shop on our web site. When that happens, you will be able to shop from outside the United Kingdom, so you will be able to buy a hole punch. (However, we will probably have a minimum order amount so you might have to buy another book!)

Please check back soon. [return to top]

Q: I don't live in the United Kingdom, but I want to buy one of your books. Where can I find them?

A: Please see our Shop pages.

* * * * * * * * * * * *

If you are still having problems, or you can't find a solution to your problem here, please send an email to describing your problem. Also, please include the following information:

  • Are you working on a PC or an Apple Mac? Which System Software version? (Windows 98? XP? 2000? Mac OS 9? OS X?)
  • Which browser and version are you using (eg Internet Explorer 5.0? 6? Netscape 4.0, AOL)?
  • Which service provider are you using (eg AOL, Compuserve, etc)?
  • What actually happens when you try to enter the user name and password?
  • Which pages are you trying to get (eg friends downloads, download your dreams pages, etc).

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  Please report problems or errors to: . Top That! is a Registered Trade Mark of Top That! Publishing plc. All file-online.com text and images copyright 2001 Top That! Publishing plc. Books published in the U.S. by Tangerine Press™, an imprint of Scholastic, Inc. All rights reserved. Read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.