Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

Sleepy Laptop*

My mail is telling me it is time to repost an article..

Reader Asks How To Adjust Sleep Mode

Q: My laptop goes to sleep too soon. How do I give myself more time?

A: You can quite easily adjust the length of the “inactivity” time allowed before your computer goes into a power savings mode, such as “sleep”. For those of you really concerned with power savings, you can make it kick in after 5 minutes of idle time – and power users can turn it off completely (It will still be available from the Start >Shut Down menu).

Vista and Windows 7 users will find the settings by clicking Start > Control Panel > Hardware and Sound > Power Options

In XP it is Control Panel > Power Options.


Here you can quickly choose from one of three power policies, (aka “power plan”) to fit your current usage — Balanced, Power Saver, and High Performance. In the picture above, I am plugged into the wall and I want every ounce of performance. When it is time to go mobile and I will be running on my battery, I want to sacrifice some of the bells and whistles, conserve battery, and stretch my time between recharging’s to the maximum, so I will click on middle radio button.
(Vista/Win7: A quick way to do this to launch the Mobility Center by pressing the Windows key + X)

To set my own times, I click on the “Change plan settings” link under the “Power plan” (Or, “Change when the computer sleeps” link in the left column).


Use the drop down arrows to select the length of time your machine is idle before the power is cut to your monitor, and when it general goes into the power-saving sleep mode. I have set a fairly typical policy here, but my advice for the reader who asked the question was leave the setting for the monitor (screen) to a short time, but extend the sleep time to an hour.. or longer.

[note: by using the “Change plan settings” link, I get a window that allows me to set different times for when I am plugged into an outlet and when I am on battery.]

Today’s free link: a good way to tell if your machine has picked up some malware – or some has slipped by your onboard AV – is a visit to Panda’s Infected or Not website and get a free scan.

* Orig post: October 16, 2007

Copyright 2007-2010 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved. jaanix post to jaanix.

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June 22, 2010 Posted by | computers, how to, Microsoft, mobile, PC, Portable Computing, tech, troubleshooting, Vista, Windows, Windows 7, XP | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Smart Printing Habits Save Money

Reduce Your Ink and Paper Costs With These Simple Tips

Printer paper is dear, and ink cartridges are outrageous.

Can you tell I recently went to the store? Sheeze! Yes, I know all about “generics”, and refills, and refill kits.. but ouch! The price tags still hurt an old skinflint like me. (Call me Captain Cheapdate.)

Tip of the day: reduce your ink and paper consumption with these simple tips.

* Open your printer’s Preferences and set your printer to default to its lowest quality setting — usually referred to as “Draft” — and set it B&W (or, “Grayscale”).

Click Start > Control Panel > Printers and right-click on your printer. Then select “Printing Preferences” from the context menu. Make your changes, and then click the “Apply” button.

This setting will suffice for the majority of your printing needs. For certain documents that require better quality, you simply come back here and change them back. (or.. keep reading)

* If possible, use “double-sided printing” to save paper. Also, in some cases, you may be able to print many (small versions of) pages onto a page.

* Use Print Preview to see what your output is going to look like ahead of time. Make sure your “portrait” page isn’t being printed as “landscape”! And use the the “Print Range” setting to make sure you don’t print more source pages than you intend.

* When printing out Web pages, select just the areas you want (you don’t want the color banner ads, right?) to print. This article may help, Extracting text from Web pages*; and/or, Firefox users can install the Aardvark add-on, and IE users can download Canon’s Easy WebPrint.

Today’s free download: Well, I count two already, so.. let me change that–
Today’s free links: Watch a video tutorial which demonstrates making these changes, and shows you how to set up “virtual printers” as a quick and easy shortcut to different quality settings.

Printer maintenance–how to avoid printer problems Read how to keep that printer performing like new, and troubleshoot minor issues.

Copyright 2007-9 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved. post to jaanix

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March 2, 2009 Posted by | advice, computers, hardware, how to, performance, printers, tech | , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments