Tech – for Everyone

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

Top Tips for Hidden Windows 10 features

(Including “GodMode”!)

Folks, here’s an article you “Power Users” who’ve got the new Windows 10 will want to read…

* GodMode and More: Top Hidden Win 10 Tricks

Here’s what you need to know to amp up your Windows 10 install and get the most from the latest Windows version.” Read more..

* * *

Today’s quote:I believe that if life gives you lemons, you should make lemonade… And try to find somebody whose life has given them vodka, and have a party.” ~ Ron White

Copyright 2007-2015 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


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All we really have, in the end, are our stories.
Make yours great ones. Ones to be proud of.

August 19, 2016 Posted by | advice, computers, how to, Microsoft, PC, performance, software, tech, tweaks, Windows, Windows 10 | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

SB 153 + Fun Video

Folks, here’s another pretty picture for your Sunday.

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Click on image to see more by this artist (reco’d)

untitled, by Craig Deakin, courtesy of Flickr Commons.

Sunday Ugly:

scary_phish_spam_4_3_14

Please understand – even if you are a parent, and even if you are worried about bad people in your neighborhood, you must resist your curiosity and remember to NEVER OPEN UNSOLICITED EMAIL. Period. End of story.

This is a classic “phishing” attack (yes, attack). You simply must be rather paranoid when you’re on the Internet — because they are trying to get you (and/or your computer). The psychology behind this one is pretty obvious.. and sadly, thousands will open it.

Friday Fun Video (kinda late)

*      *      *

Today’s quote:Relying on the government to protect your privacy is like asking a peeping tom to install your window blinds.” ~ John Perry Barlow

Copyright 2007-2014 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


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All we really have, in the end, are our stories.
Make yours great ones. Ones to be proud of.
And please, never forget – one person can make a difference.
Find a way to make someone’s day today.
(Best advice I ever heard? Don’t sweat the small stuff.)

April 6, 2014 Posted by | advice, computers, cyber crime, Digital Images, e-mail, hackers, Internet, Internet scam, Phishing, security, tech | , , , | Leave a comment

A Word About Word #2 (Some Useful Tricks)

Folks, I have been using Microsoft’s document maker (aka “text editor”, or “word processor”) –  Word – basically since it first came out, back in the Paleozoic Age of computing (circa 1984, or so) so I was pleasantly surprised when I reviewed a Word Tips article where I actually learned something new.

MS Word document iconHere it is (you might not know all these either..) Five tips that will increase your Word productivity

Most of us don’t have time to discover all the ins and outs of the software we use on a daily basis. We learn on the fly, we occasionally pick up a tip or shortcut, and we grudgingly plow through the Help system when we absolutely have to.” Read more..

Also, down at the bottom, there’s: Additional resources

And, yes. People still use Office (Word/Excel/Access/PowerPoint/Outlook) and yes, they “own the disc”. (Frankly, I think you always want to have the disc..)

Audience participation: Is anyone out there actually using Toucan for backup/sync? Or.. tried to? I’d appreciate some ‘feedback’, if you’d be so kind.

Today’s quote:A man’s health can be judged by which he takes two at a time – pills or stairs.” ~ Joan Welsh

Copyright 2007-2013 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


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All we really have, in the end, are our stories.
Make yours great ones. Ones to be proud of.

January 26, 2013 Posted by | advice, computers, how to, Microsoft, MS Office, MS Word, PC, software, tech | , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

4 Quick Tips: Get More From Google

Iolo has posted this handy Quick Tip list I think everyone should know:

  • Google Get the latest weather. To quickly get the current weather conditions and a three-day forecast, type the word weather followed by a zip code or city and state and then press ENTER (or click Search).
  • Track airline flights. A helpful feature when you’re picking up a friend from the airport or rushing to catch a flight yourself: to get real-time flight information, type in the airline name followed by the flight number and press ENTER. You’ll then see the status of the flight (like “on-time” or “30 minutes late”) and its estimated arrival or departure time.
  • Track packages. To track a UPS, FedEx, or US Postal Service package, type or paste in the tracking number and press ENTER; Google will display a direct link to a web page with more information.
  • Calculate math. Whether balancing your check box or calculating a tip, Google’s calculator function can come in handy. Simply type in the math problem and press ENTER; for example, entering 900+50 will display 950; entering 38.55*20% will display 7.71.

They also have some Quick Tips for Word, and Facebook, here.

Today’s quote:Pain is temporary. Quitting lasts forever.” ~ Lance Armstrong

Hope you enjoy your weekend, everybody!

Copyright 2007-2011 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


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September 3, 2011 Posted by | advice, Google, how to, Internet, tech | , , , , , | 2 Comments

What a long strange trip it’s been…

In the middle of last year, this site passed a major website milestone, having had one million visitors. (Naturally, I wrote an article on that.) I noticed this morning that The ‘ole odometer has just clicked over the 1.5 millionth visitor to my humble tech Tips, Tricks, and Advice site, Tech – for Everyone.

I have copy>pasted the previous article, and updated it, to reflect what’s happened in intervening months.

*     *     *

Since I published my first article (The first Tech Paul Post: secure your web connection) in June of 2007, I have learned a thing or two, made some important friendships, and – hopefully – helped a few folks learn a few things, solve a few problems, and better enjoy technology along the way.

To you – Dear Reader – I say…

thank_you

A few other T4E stats:

# of articles posted: 1,056 1,423 (roughly 95.56% original, 4.44% re-postings.) Note: Use my “Search widget” to browse prior tips & answers by keywords, or browse my writings by month.

# of Reader Comments: 3,892 6,955 (almost exactly half of those are my replies.. so lets say, 2,000 3,500 readers have asked questions/commented. I welcome your comments on my articles and questions about computers and “tech”. Dialogue is what keeps the Web relevant and dynamic.)

Most popular article: Manage Startup programs in Vista

Most downloaded program (referral): Microsoft’s PowerPoint Viewer is tops, with 2,065.
The previous winner here, Security Task Manager (928 1,238) has dropped to #3.  (Panda’s Cloud Antivirus is #2, with 1,292.)

# of cups of coffee consumed by Tech Paul while writing all these articles: 16 26 (… but, they were Olympic swimming pool-sized cups. Ha!)

WordPress rated this blog a “Wow” (see, WordPress Rates Tech – for Everyone)

It was never my intention to write so many articles, nor write for so long. My intention was simply to publish a few How-To’s – so I could say “Here, read this”, instead of constantly repeating myself (when people find out you’re a tech.. they ask you questions!).

Thanks for being a part of it all, and I hope you all have a tolerably fair-to-middlin’ week!

Today’s quotable quote:It ain’t what they call you, it’s what you answer to.”  ~ W.C. Fields

Copyright 2007-2011 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


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May 25, 2011 Posted by | blogging, tech | , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Windows 7 – Old Games Won’t Play.. Help! (Updated)

5 6 Methods For Getting Old Programs To Run On New Computers

This article is an updated and improved version of  Windows 7 – Old Games Won’t Play.. Help!, a “reader question” article that has proven quite popular. It seems quite a few people want their 12-year old, 16-bit, Gen 1 games to play on latest generation, 64-bit machines, (I don’t blame them) but it doesn’t always work. Here are some tips for solving the problem. They are in the appropriate order, IMHO. (These work in Vista as well.)

1) Turn off “hardware acceleration”. A common cause of errors and “playability issues” is the old games’ use (or lack of) of hardware “acceleration”, which is referring to the “video card”, or more accurately, the graphics driver. Most graphics drivers allow you to turn off the hardware acceleration (which may resolve your issue).
Click Start in the lower left corner of Windows.
Click Control Panel, click Appearance and Personalization, click Personalization, click Display Settings, and then click Advanced Settings.
Click the Troubleshoot tab, and then click Change Settings.Move the Hardware Acceleration slider until it is one notch to the right of None. This is the basic acceleration setting.
Click OK twice, and then close the window.
Restart the computer.

[you can also get there via the graphic adapter’s Properties in Device Manager]

Graph_Acc

[Note: Change Settings will be disabled if the graphics card drivers do not support disabling hardware acceleration. You may need to check the video card manufacturer’s website, and download the latest driver.]

2) You may need set the troublesome games to launch in “Compatibility Mode”, and tell them to run under Windows XP SP2. This article, https://techpaul.wordpress.com/2009/06/28/compatibility-tricks-for-old-programs-new-machines/ shows you how. The “Compat Mode” section is about half way down the page.

3) You might need to try repeating Step 2, but this time install directly to your C:\ drive (by default, Windows will install programs to C:\Program Files or C:\Program Files(x86) folder) using the “Custom install” option during set up. This will eliminate some of the Permissions issues that keep older programs from running correctly.

4) You may also – if the game is old enough – need to turn off all but one CPU core. This is called “setting the affinity”. Also see, Compatibility Tricks for Old Programs, New Machines. If this resolves your issue, the article includes a download for a tool to make this setting ‘stick’.

5) For really old, DOS-based games, install DOSBox. DOSBox is a great tool, especially for old games. I would suggest reading the tutorial, here: http://www.dosbox.com/wiki/DOSBoxShortcuts#Windows

6) Though I view this as a bit of a ‘last resort’, you can install a “virtual machine” and run the game in there.
* If you have the Professional, Enterprise or Ultimate edition of Windows 7, you can download XP Modewhich is really Virtual PC – for free. If you have other editions of Windows, grab Virtual PC 2007 from the same place.
* Perhaps a better alternative is using VMWare Server (free), from www.vmware.com/products/server. I have read that the VMWare handles the hardware acceleration better.

In both cases, you’ll have to supply the copy of (old) Windows yourself, and install it (into the “virtual machine”) from scratch.

… I hate to say, but it is possible that you may try all these things and get unsatisfactory results. I keep an old Pentium II machine (Windows 98) around just for playing those old games (which I wouldn’t dream of connecting to the Internet!). The games play best on the hardware/OS of their day. You might need to do the same. Or.. say goodbye to your old friends.

Progress!

Copyright 2007-2011 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


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January 25, 2011 Posted by | advice, Compatibility Mode, computers, device drivers, Gaming, how to, Microsoft, PC, performance, software, tech, troubleshooting, tweaks, Virtual Machine, Vista, Windows, Windows 7 | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 18 Comments

How To Add Images And Color In Your Holiday Letters

Word Tricks Makes Letters Merrier

It is the Holiday time of year. (Is it just me, or did 2010 pass-by rather quickly?) Each year at this time, I post this article which demonstrates some tricks to make your Season’s Greetings letters more joyous, and your documents more visually interesting.

Tip of the day: Add some festivity to your documents with fonts and color. MS Word has a lot of features and options built into it that allows for some very creative elements to be added to your correspondence, and is not at all limited to cold, “professional” documents. I’ll use Word for this demo, but you can do this in most text editors, and e-mail programs.

Today I’m going to use a hypothetical holiday greeting letter to show how to add some fun. By default, Word sets the font to Times New Roman at 12 “points” in height. I have typed in my text, to get things started, and will demonstrate using this letter’s “opener”. As it is a header, I have “centered” the text. 1.jpg

As you can see, this font and text does not quite convey the joy and cheer and “best wishes” I am hoping to express. In fact, this may as well say, “Memo from Giganti Corp.” Yawn! So first thing I’m going to do is ‘tweak’ the font style, and make some word bigger (louder), to express a less formal tone. 2.jpg

I “highlighted” Season’s Greetings, and used the Font drop-down arrow and selected a cursive font– Lucida Handwriting (explore Words various fonts, and find the one you like best). I set the point size to 36. I repeated the process on the second sentence, but set the type smaller.. only 18. I think you’ll agree, this is much more “friendly” than the default’s look. But this is just not Festive enough! Let’s use some color and improve things some more. 3.jpg

I have again “highlighted” season’s greetings to select this font, and then clicked the Font Color button on the Formatting toolbar (If this is not showing, click here to read how to customize your toolbars). I then clicked on the little red box in the color-picker. Now season’s greetings is red. I want to alternate letters in green, so I hold down the Ctrl key and use my mouse to “select” every other letter. 4.jpg I didn’t really like the greens available on the color-picker, so I clicked on “More Colors”…. 5.jpg
… and selected a green that contrasted nicely with the red– as the box in the lower right corner shows. This is the result of these steps. 6.jpg

Much more jolly! But, something’s missing… 9.jpg

Let’s add one more thing– a picture of a candy cane. I went on the Internet and found a Royalty-free graphic (though a piece of Clip Art would do just as nicely) and…10.jpg

Voila!I could ‘go crazy’, and get carried away with adding things here… but I hope you will be able to see by this little demonstration — using only two of Word’s functions — that you are limited only by your own creativity, and that it’s easy to personalize and ’spice up’ your documents.

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


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December 9, 2010 Posted by | advice, computers, Digital Images, how to, MS Word, tech, word processors | , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments