Yes, Windows offers its own built-in troubleshooters. Here’s how to tap into them. Oops, you’re bumping into trouble with Windows. Maybe you can’t connect to the Internet. Perhaps your audio has stopped working. Maybe your PC is blue screening. Or perhaps you’re not sure of the cause of the problem but just know that your PC is acting funky. Where can you turn for help? You can turn to Windows itself. The OS offers its own built-in set of troubleshooting tools designed to scan for, analyze, and hopefully fix specific problems. The troubleshooters are available in Windows 10, 8.1, and 7. But whatever your flavor of Windows, the troubleshooters are usually a good first step when you’re bothered by a persistent problem. In some cases, a Windows troubleshooter will pop up automatically if you experience a glitch in Windows. For instance, if an application crashes or your screen display suddenly goes on the fritz, then the appropriate troubleshooter may appear to try to save the day. In other cases, you’ll have to manually trigger the right troubleshooter depending on the nature of the problem. Or if you’re not sure what’s causing trouble, you can run through the entire array of … Read More
If you work a lot with spreadsheets, you know how difficult they can be once you get beyond simple tables and equations. And you know that data entry can be boring beyond belief. The more complex the table, the more confusing it is to evaluate. Shouldn’t there be quicker and easier way to do some of these tasks? Microsoft Excel has a lot of nifty shortcuts that can help relieve the tedium of data entry and provide clarity with complex tables. Here are six features built into Excel 2016 that can ease creating spreadsheets and understanding the ones you (and other people) create. And after those six, I’ll treat you to 20 keyboard shortcuts that – if you can memorize them – will make your jobs lighter. Some of these tricks will be found in earlier versions of Excel; others are exclusive to Excel 2016. Remember that if you subscribe to Office 365, you currently have Excel 2016. Tell Me What You Want To Do Do you always remember how to create a pie chart, freeze the left-hand column, or name a range? I didn’t think so. Excel’s “Tell me what you want to do” can help you complete a chore even … Read More
Faster boot times and power downs are yours — and all you have to do is open the Control Panel System and Security menu, then configure the Power Options settings. Let’s look at them one by one. Turn off your PC with touch of a button, not a bunch of clicks Pop quiz: How many clicks does it take for you to shut down Windows? If it is any more than one, that’s a waste of clicks – and your time. Whether your PC is a desktop or a laptop, Windows Shutdown default has always been a multi-click affair. In Windows 7, you had to open the Start menu by either mouse click or pressing the Windows key on your keyboard. Then you have to click the Shutdown button. In Windows 8 to 10, it is a three click Cha-Cha-Cha: click or press Start, click Power, click Shutdown. There are a couple of ways you can optimize your computer, no matter what the version of Windows, by changing the Power settings with Power Options. With a laptop, type lid in the Start search bar. On a desktop PC, type power but in the Start search bar and select Change what the … Read More
Since we have been using computers, we have been looking for a way for each machine’s administrators to better control the machines and take care of them. This is how we got PowerShell: Microsoft gave admins a command line tool that would be able to automate more and more tasks, from scripting across a network to fully deploying and managing a server with no graphical user interface. Of course, with every good thing comes attackers that abuse it, and PowerShell is no exception. A recent attack that utilizes a malicious word attachment also used PowerShell commands to put a back door in the system, then used DNS TXT record queries and responses to create a bidirectional Command and Control (C2) channel. While this process is not new, the recent headline use of PowerShell has led to some question if one can block PowerShell on their machines. The first thing to know is that one truly cannot uninstall PowerShell from a system. Think of PowerShell like the DOS command line that is still hiding under the hood of the operating system: it’s a deep, embedded part of the operating system. However, that doesn’t mean you aren’t without options to better prevent the use of … Read More
For those who like to use their own photos in a desktop-background slide show, Windows offers several ways to display those images. I suspect most people select the default Fill option, which typically expanses and crops images to fill the entire desktop.
Like many Windows users, I’ve set up a slide show of favorite images for my desktop background. But most of those images don’t precisely match the screen resolution, so they’re often oddly cropped. Surprisingly, a simple solution can be found in Win10’s included Photos app.
Here’s a tip is about a font issue that cropped up recently.