I get a lot of questions about the hardware and software I use and recommend, so I’ve decided to publish the list. Here’s the devices and services I use the most.
With limited storage capacity, it’s not surprising that RT tablets do not sync your cloud-stored files for offline access. Take my SkyDrive for example, which holds over 60 GB of my stuff. While Windows RT does provide a SkyDrive app for access, there are times when it would be useful to open this cloud storage [...]
Today it occurred to me that the pin action has really taken off at Microsoft across all products and divisions. Just like the physical version, pins are used to personalize and post your stuff in-place, wherever you want to place it. Here’s just a few places you can find this metaphor in Windows, and how [...]
Whether you’re trying to preserve your battery, your bandwidth, or your bottom line, there are a number of reasons you might want to limit the data usage of your PC. Here’s how to watch or curb your data usage in Windows 8 for any wifi network. From the Settings charm, tap the connection button to [...]
I’ve shown you how to make SkyDrive the storage location for your Windows libraries, as well as sync your desktop and other shell folders to SkyDrive and your other PCs. But what if you have files that need to stay on another drive, or that can’t be moved to the SkyDrive folder?
If you’ve been following me here or on twitter, you know I’m a huge proponent of SkyDrive, the online storage space service from Microsoft. SkyDrive makes sharing files a breeze – whether it privately among your private personal computers and devices, discreetly with individuals and colleagues, or publically with the world. SkyDrive is a great [...]
I’ve written before about the non-intuitive nature of visual effects in recent versions of Windows, where offloading the desktop rendering duties to the graphics card can result in considerable performance improvements. While this is true for nearly any modern PC, including those with ‘integrated’ graphics cards, there are still steps one may take to enhance [...]
Sorry Verizon, there’s no easy way to say this. For a communications company, you really suck at enabling your customers to communicate with their world. In a day where real-time collaboration is a necessity, consumers expect a certain level of functionality. This includes the ability to communicate in text conversations with a group of colleagues.
I do not suffer from obsessive compulsive disorder, but I do display some OCD tendencies. One of these is habitually emptying the Recycle Bin on my desktop — I just cannot stand to see those virtual papers in there (if only I took out the trash at home with as much fervor).
This Christmas, consider tech services gifts for your non tech friends and family. Because they provide access to services and content year-round, they’re sure to be gifts that keep on giving. You don’t need to be a geek to appreciate these fine services that make great gifts for anyone.
The OneNote radial menu provides finger-friendly access to common commands. When you’re familiar with the layout of the menu, you can use it without opening it first: just swipe in the direction of the command you want to select.
Pinning submenu commands to the toolbar not only provides more direct access, but also serves as a status indicator to a state that may otherwise be hidden. For example, now I can tell at a glance the status of my Excel workbook calculations, and change it if necessary before I make an edit that would [...]
Gmail’s use of labels instead of folders typically means that using the service with most mail clients can be tricky. If you know how Gmail archives instead of deletes messages though, you can more easily triage and archive mail from Windows 8.
Your Start screen tiles can link deeper into your apps, providing a one-touch shortcut to the content you care about most. Whether it’s people, email, news, or content from a variety of other apps, you can deep pin it on your Start screen easily.
Did you know that you can add your own commands to the toolbar at the top of Microsoft Office programs? This also applies to several apps in Windows 7, and has even been expanded to the File Explorer in Windows 8!
Enable deep searching inside files in all folders, even if the search system hasn’t indexed the location. Searches in these places might take longer because they haven’t been scanned ahead of time, but this will provide consistent search experience everywhere.
With this tip, you can tell your Libraries to save to SkyDrive for seamlessly enabling any app to save to the cloud. SkyDrive lets you keep your files in the cloud and your computer in constant sync, and allows for access anywhere from your smart phone or any browser. You can even remotely fetch files [...]
Did you know the Xbox on-screen keyboard can be placed in different orders to suit your preference? If you’re a touch typist that already knows the positions of keys as they exist on a standard keyboard, you might be slowed down when typing on the default Xbox keyboard that places keys in alphabetical order. Or [...]
Have you ever wanted to bypass the Windows login screen? Believe it or not, auto-login has been available in Windows for years, but the options to enable this feature are hidden with good reason: carelessly enabling automatic login can be risky
Among the top features called out by any gmail fan is the archive button, which acts as a simple dismissal of a message. Archiving removes an entire email conversation thread from your inbox, while keeping it accessible under all mail, or any number of labels. It’s an extremely efficient hybrid method between piling and filing, because it [...]
If you’re looking for a new PC, you can ask any geek and they’ll tell you to build clean. Their reason is simple: the manufacturer’s cripple their own products before they ever send it to you. Even if you buy direct, original equipment manufacturers make money by pre-installing trials, games, bundles, even spyware on to [...]
Many of even the most infrequent of Internet users has experienced instant searches by now, where search suggestions (or even full results) appear live while you type, before you even press Enter. It seems like magic, searching the entire world as fast as you can type. But did you know your Windows PC has the same [...]
I’m thrilled and honored to have been re-awarded as a Microsoft MVP for 2012. My award date is April 1, so you’ll understand the delay my boasting — would you have believed me last week? The award box arrived yesterday evening, where I promptly ripped the box apart like a kid on Christmas morning. Here’s [...]
Has this ever happened to you? At best an annoyance, this can be a real productivity killer as you hunt around to find the user that has the file locked. You could save a copy of the file and try to clean up or reconcile later, and while collaboration solutions like SharePoint limit these cases, [...]
Folks both for and against metro are up in arms. In classic American political style, these two camps have taken fiercely opposite and extreme views: either love or hate it. Based on online observations, I believe reactions to the Metro interface in Windows 8 come in two general varieties: Reaction when using Metro on any touch-capable [...]
I just finished installing Windows 8 natively using a VHD, as discussed in my previous post, and while exploring I noticed some fonts were not quite as crisp as I would like. Others may not notice this subtle nuance, but it is likely that in aggregate you’ll be affected by stretched images, poor font and color quality, and even [...]
In this post, I’ll discuss why you should avoid using virtual machines for evaluating the new Windows 8 Consumer Preview, and how you can test drive this new OS the way it (and you) deserve by fully booting into it. Some readers may be aware that Windows added support for lossless hard disk partitioning beginning [...]