Author Archives: Becky Waring

Becky Waring

About Becky Waring

Becky Waring has worked as a writer and editor for CNET, ZDNET, Technology Review, Upside Magazine, and many other news sources. She alternates the Best Software column with Windows Secrets contributing editor Scott Spanbauer.

Get wired performance from your Wi-Fi network

Although the Wi-Fi arms race isn’t going to let up any time soon, wireless can never be as fast and reliable as wires.

So why fight it? Get the best of both worlds with a hybrid Wi-Fi and powerline network, perfect for streaming high-def video.

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A complete guide to Windows 7 keyboard shortcuts

One of the best ways to increase your computing productivity doesn’t cost a cent: learn the keyboard shortcuts for your most-used commands.

To help you stop mousing around and become a keyboard maestro, I rounded up the best resources for finding, using, and creating shortcuts.

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Set-top boxes match up: Apple TV vs. Google TV

The secret to choosing the right set-top box for your TV is managing your expectations.

Although these devices give TVs access to more of your audio, video, and Web media, none of them provides the one thing we really want — lower cable bills.

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Hybrid hard drives finally come of age

Once hailed as the perfect compromise between pricey solid-state drives and cheaper-but-slower platter models, hybrid hard drives quickly became a technological flash in the pan.

But new models from Seagate have resuscitated the technology — the Momentus XT line offers many of solid state’s benefits without the sticker shock.

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Spectrum-analysis tools cure Wi-Fi headaches

If you’re suffering from poor Wi-Fi performance, dropouts, or dead zones despite having the latest and greatest router, it’s time to check your airwaves.

Metageek’s inexpensive Wi-Spy spectrum analyzers will root out rogue access points, interfering neighbors, cordless phones, and more — giving you back control over your Wi-Fi net.

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Gmail flaw shows value of strong passwords

The disclosure of a back door allowing bad guys to repeatedly guess Gmail passwords should remind us all to protect our accounts with long and strong character strings.

There’s a straightforward way to protect your online accounts — use sign-in phrases that are easy for you to remember but hard for others to guess.

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Use OpenDNS to surf safely with these tricks

Windows Secrets editors frequently recommend OpenDNS, a free service that blocks dangerous sites so you can browse the Web securely.

Unfortunately, OpenDNS has a few tricky gotchas for the unwary, but most of the problems can be solved if you set up an account and take advantage of a few tweaks.

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