Fecal matter can be found on 1 out of every 6 smartphones…

I’m sorry for the catchy title, but it is a topic of importance… Today I had someone that wanted me to help them on their smartphone and as I was touching their phone (which was not very well-kempt), I started wondering; How many germs was I coming in contact with? Where has this phone been? Has the phone ever been cleaned? Do they use their smartphone when on the toilet?

Following this experience, I started looking for some information on this and came across a USAToday article from back in February that indicated “Your smartphone is 7 times dirtier than your toilet…” The article specifically pointed out that:

Fecal matter can be found on 1 out of every 6 smartphones, according to a 2011 study done by researchers at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine.

“Mobile phones have become veritable reservoirs of pathogens as they touch faces, ears, lips and hands of different users of different health conditions,” researchers observed in a 2009 study of bacteria removed from personal calling devices.

All of the bacteria picked up during your day-to-day activities ends up on your daily dialing devices, and odds are, you don’t clean them often or well enough.

“All cellphones are going to have bacteria on them because we hold them up to our face…

The bottom line here is; you can head off germs by washing your hands frequently and you need to clean and disinfect your phone daily. What I use is Lysol Handi-Pack Disinfecting Wipes that is safe to use on electronics including Smartphones, Tablets and Remote Controls (see full description below).

So, take my advice, keep your hands clean and your smartphones clean… The outward appearance of your smartphone can tell a lot about you…

Lysol Handi-Pack
Disinfecting Wipes

Lysol Disinfecting Wipes can be used as a convenient way to clean and disinfect your household surfaces. Each pre-moistened disposable wipe kills germs wherever you use it, even suitable to use on wood. No bottles, no sponges, no mess. Kills Salmonella Enterica (Salmonella), Influenza A Virus Herpes Simplex Virus Type 1 and Respiratory Syncytial Virus on hard, non porous surfaces in 10 minutes. Kills 99.9% of Viruses and Bacteria. Removes more than 95% of allergens (Pet Dander, Dust Mite Debris and Pollen Particles). Lysol Disinfecting Wipes are also safe to use on electronics including Smartphones, Tablets and Remote Controls.


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What’s On My PC

Here is how to go “incognito” in Google Chrome…

When you typically browse the internet with Google Chrome (and other web browsers), the sites you visit are stored in the browser’s history. Also, the sites you visit will deposit and store browsing cookies that keep track of your visits and activity. Both typically serve good purposes; however, what if you do not want to be tracked? If that is the case, then go “incognito”.

Here’s how to go “incognito” in Google Chrome:

  1. On your computer, open Chrome.
  2. At the top right, click More More and then New Incognito Window.
  3. A new window appears. In the top corner, check for the Incognito icon Incognito
  4. You will see a window similar to what is pictured below.

A misconception about “incognito” mode:

Even though your browsing history and cookies are not stored on the computer you are working from; websites you visit, your employer or school, or internet service provider can still track your activity via the computer’s IP addresses.

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11 Uses for Your Old Smartphone | PCMag.com

Don’t throw that old smartphone away. There are many “afterlife” uses…


11 Uses for Your Old Smartphone

Most of us can probably eke out a few years with our smartphones, but the upgrade cycle means it’s always tempting to splurge on a shinier model. You can usually save a few bucks by trading your old phone in when you buy a new one, but there are times you might end up with an extra, aging smartphone hanging around. Instead of letting that phone collect dust, reuse it. If it connects to Wi-Fi, it can still be a handy addition to the household. Here are a few cool things you can do with your old smartphone… — Continue Reading @ PCMag.com

How do I download ALL my Google Photos?

If you own an Android OS based smartphone, you most likely are using Google Photos to archive your photos (and videos) online (at Google Photos). Even though your photos are safely stored online, the question arises, “How do I download all my Google Photos?”. Here at “What’s On My PC” I decided to explore the process that is currently in place to do just that. There is a slight learning curve to this and will require some time; especially if you have years of photos and thousands of photos. For example, in my case, I had 26.6 GB of photo and video content stored at Google Photos that I am still working on. In my case, I had twenty-six 1GB files to download and that is not the end of it. Since I like keeping my photo library organized, I will have to explore extracting the photos and videos from the multiple folders that were included in the downloads. Once I complete this process, I plan to, on an annual basis, download a year worth’s of photos at a time to stay ahead of this.

If you decide you want to explore this, the first thing you need to do is to go to Google Takeout where all of your Google Data is stored. I bet you did not know you could download your Google Data??? Once you are on the site, slightly scroll down to and click on “Deselect all”. If you don’t do this, you will end up downloading not only your photos but all of your data. Continue reading “How do I download ALL my Google Photos?”

Learning How To Pause Windows 10 Updates At Home

For people at home, Microsoft Windows 10 (Home Edition) has an advanced built-in feature that allows you to “temporarily” delay or pause Windows updates for up to 35 days. For your IT Network Managers in the business world, you are most likely running Windows 10 Pro, Enterprise, etc…; and, in those instances, updates can be delayed up to a year.

Microsoft Windows is an extremely complex operating system, the target of the criminal enterprise, and as a result, updates are necessary in order to maintain the integrity of the operating system. Often though, these updates run into compatibility issues or the coding of the update may be off just enough that it causes widespread problems. As a result, a good strategy here is to delay the updates; especially if you know beforehand the update is one that is a major OS “feature” update where potential stability problems often occur.

So, how do you delay the updates? I found a good tutorial on this, which is a quick read, and for you folks at home, you will learn where and how to pause updates in a matter of minutes. There are also instructions included for anyone else who has the higher Windows 10 version options.

I do want to add that it is vitally important to allow updates to eventually take hold in order to protect your data and the integrity of the operating system.


How to delay Windows 10 updates, like the November 2019 Update

Windows Update

Do you want to stop Windows 10 November 2019 Update (version 1909) from downloading and installing on your computers and other similar devices? The good news is that, if you have Windows 10 Pro or a superior edition such as Enterprise, you can postpone updates for up to an entire year. Even if you only have Windows 10 Home, you can still change some settings and make it delay updates for up to 35 days. Here is how to postpone Windows 10 updates such as November 2019 Update.

Continue Reading @ Digital Citizen


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When is owning a Chromebook a worthy choice vs. owning a Windows Laptop?

Below my post here is an article from c|net explaining the differences between a Chromebook vs. a Windows laptop and how Chromebooks have progressed to the point that they are a worthy choice; but, when is that choice really worthy.

In my opinion (and experience), a Chromebook is a choice for someone that is pretty much limited to being tied to the internet. From what I am seeing out there in the “real world” of home computing, a Chromebook will suffice for the kids growing up and the parents that are retired. The Chromebooks are lower in cost, simple to operate and very low maintenance. There are no antivirus software to install and updates are transparent. I own a Chromebook and let me tell you, I love it. For what I do these days (i.e. blogging, writing letters, exploring the internet) it gets the job done and gets it done at a lower price point than a full-blown Windows-based laptop. Once you get past the low learning curve, you will be dragging your Chromebook everywhere through the house.

Examples of Chromebooks and Their Prices

Now again, using real-world thinking here, if you are the high school student, the college student or the working business person, go with a Windows-based laptop. The reason for that thinking is that people in those life categories are using power-intensive applications (Microsoft Windows, Microsoft Office, Video Conferencing, etc…) that are the industry standards. There are ways to use a Chromebook to run these standard applications, but you will get frustrated; whereas, the Windows-based laptop is engineered to handle these applications with ease. With a Windows-based laptop be prepared, as you probably already know, for a higher cost, with a higher learning curve, and a higher level of maintenance.

Examples of Windows Based Laptops and Their Prices

Continue reading “When is owning a Chromebook a worthy choice vs. owning a Windows Laptop?”

How to Make Chrome Always Open Desktop Sites by Default on Android | Gadget Hacks

Many folks at home don’t know about this; but, when visiting a web site on your Android phone, using Google Chrome, you can toggle from the mobile view of the website to the desktop view (which is the view you typically see on your desktop or laptop computers). Here at “What’s On My PC” I use this toggle on a regular basis. I encourage you to visit “Gadge Hacks”, by clicking on the source link below, to learn more about this and “why” you would want to go to the desktop view.


Open the Chrome app and tap the three dots in the top-right corner. When you do this, a menu will pop up. Here, you will see the button “Desktop site” — tap on this to turn on desktop browsing. When you do this, it will make the website load like the desktop version.

Continue Reading @ Gadget Hacks


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How To Change The Theme On Your Windows 10 Computer

When we paint a room in our house we get that feeling that we have something anew. You can do the same thing with your Windows 10 computer by changing the theme. I have found over the years by assisting people with computers that they will stay with the same color schemes, backgrounds, etc… during the entire life of owning their computers. Much of it has to do with being fearful that they may mess up the operation of their computer.

With Windows 10 you are given many options (themes) to change the appearance of what you are seeing and I encourage people to take advantage of that to give you that feeling of anew.

In Windows 10, the simplest way to get started with changing the theme on your computer is to simply go to the desktop, right mouse click, and select “Personalize” on the menu.

  • Once the “Personalization” window loads, select “Themes” from the sidebar menu.
  • Once the “Themes” window loads, you will have options where you can customize make changes to the current theme (background, color, sounds and mouse cursor); BUT, I highly recommend that you jump down to where it says “Change Theme”.

  • At that point, you may see 3 or 4 themes, including the current theme you are using, that shipped with Windows 10. You are not limited to just those themes.
  • Under “Themes” you will see “Get more themes in Microsoft Store”. If you click on that, you will be taken to the store where a whole new world of themes is available.

  • When selecting a theme from the Microsoft Store, read the reviews, etc… The theme you select will show up in the “Themes” window on your computer and will become part of your collection. You can change the themes anytime by following the steps outlined above.

In Summary, all-in-all, this is a simple process that you can easily learn to make using your computer a more enjoyable experience.


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How to Scan and Fix Hard Drives with CHKDSK in Windows 10 | TechJunkie

The CHKDSK (Check Disk) command has been around since the beginning of computers. Below is some quoted text from a website called TechJunkie where I found an excellent writeup on CHKDSK and how to use it. To read the full article, click on the source link at the end of this post.

chkdsk windows 10

Because CHKDSK has been updated and upgraded repeatedly with each new generation of storage hardware, the program continues to work correctly to analyze and repair hard drives of any sort, even on the most modern OSes and using the most advanced drive technologies.

The same process that used to be executed to analyze a floppy disk holding 160K, can today be executed to analyze a solid-state, all-electronic SSD holding 15 terabytes.

Millions of Windows 10 users still have mechanical hard drives in their PCs. To keep them healthy and to help investigate any unusual behavior, try the venerable CHKDSK command. Here’s how to…

Source: How to Scan & Fix Hard Drives with CHKDSK in Windows 10

How To Set Up Your Personal Vault In OneDrive | What’s On My PC

If you use Microsoft’s OneDrive, did you know there is a personal vault (protected area) in OneDrive where you can store your most important or sensitive files?  I totally forgot about the newly added “personal vault” and happened across it while browsing my OneDrive files. It was at this point I needed to know the basics in setting up my “personal vault”.

Here is what you need to do:

Personal Vault is a special folder in your OneDrive that’s protected by an extra layer of security. You’ll need to set it up separately on each device where you want to use it.

  1. The first time you see Personal Vault in your OneDrive, you’ll see a message where you can select Get started.Personal Vault get started

    If you don’t see the message or you dismissed it, browse to your OneDrive and select the Personal Vault folder.

  2. Read about Personal Vault and select Next.
  3. In the Verify your identity dialog box, verify your account info and make note of your email address in case you want it for the next step. Then select Verify.
  4. Choose a verification method. For example, select Text and follow the instructions to send yourself a text message on your phone.

    If you’re using text or email, you’ll need to find the text or email message and type in the code that you were sent.

Click the source link below to learn more about uploading files to your personal vault; moving files to your personal vault; and/or, unlocking or locking your personal vault…

Source: Microsoft

Quick Tip: How To Pin A Tab In Google Chrome

A feature I use on a regular basis is “tab pinning”. I use this feature to keep a tab open, even if I close and reopen the browser. For example, I may pin a tab to a website that is streaming music so that it remains open while I am working. When you pin a tab, it will automatically pin to the far left in the tab order and the tab will be smaller in size (to save space).

So, how do you pin a tab?

Right mouse click on the tab you desire to pin and select “Pin Tab”. You can pin more than one tab at a time.

To unpin the tab, right mouse click on the pinned tab and select “Unpin Tab”.

Below is a screenshot where the arrow is pointing to a tab I have pinned in Google Chrome.


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ZDNet Reporting That You Can Still Get A FREE Windows 10 Upgrade

As of September 20, 2019, ZDNet is reporting that the upgrade process to Windows 10 still works. If you are running Windows 7 or 8.1 I would give this a shot ASAP!

activation-digital-license-2017.jpg

Today, more than three years after the free upgrade offer supposedly ended, you can still upgrade to Windows 10 from Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 and claim a free digital entitlement, without being forced to jump through any hoops.

Continue Reading @ ZDNet


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Five Comprehensive Lists of Uninstallers (removal tools) For Common Windows Antivirus and Malware Software Products

After a conversation with a seasoned tech on the What’s On My PC Facebook page about our thoughts on Antivirus Software, for which we decided is the biggest scam in the industry, I went on the hunt to find antivirus and malware uninstallers. Why? Most people at home do not know that these antivirus and malware software installations are very comprehensive in their very nature and are not the same as installing or uninstalling normal software. Also, a common practice I have seen, as well as the tech on Facebook I was conversing with, the home-based computer user will often let a subscription run out and then install another antivirus product right on top of the other. This is a big “NO NO”; unless the antivirus or malware product you intend to install specifically states that their product can co-exist with another. Installing another antivirus or malware product on top of another will cause problems to surface and will slow down your computer.

It is important that any previously installed antivirus or Malware software is uninstalled from your system before installing another product. Typical uninstallation using the Windows removal tools (Add/Remove Programs) is often not enough to completely clean your computer.

whatsonmypc logo 2019

This is where this list of uninstallers comes into play. Typically if you have a specific product installed that you want to uninstall, you would go to the products web site and locate their uninstaller. The problem I have experienced with this is that they bury the uninstaller in the site, making it difficult to locate because they don’t want to lose you as a paying customer.

Continue reading “Five Comprehensive Lists of Uninstallers (removal tools) For Common Windows Antivirus and Malware Software Products”

Learn How To Setup and Use The Backup Utility In Windows 10

I bet you did not know there is a backup utility built into Windows 10. It is called File History… File History actually was first introduced in Windows 8. It gives you the ability to backup your personal files on your computer and restores them in the event of an issue. Below are the initial steps to setting up File History. You will need an external drive in order to back up your files. The main thing I personally was looking for in this built-in utility was whether I could select specific folders to backup and the answer to that is, you can select specific folders. You can also select specific times you want the backups to occur. If you want a more detailed description of “How to Set Up and Configure File History on Windows 10”, CLICK HERE, to see the writeup at Groovy Post by Brian Burgess.

Thank you for visiting…
Rick @ What’s On My PC

Use File History to backup and restore in Windows 10

  • Backup your PC with File History 
  • Use File History to back up to an external drive or network location. Select Start​  > Settings  > Update & Security  Backup Add a drive , and then choose an external drive or network location for your backups.
    Image of File History backup in Windows 10
  • Restore your files with File History

If you’re missing an important file or folder that you’ve backed up, here’s how to get it back:

  • In the search box on the taskbar, type restore files, and then select Restore your files with File History.

  • Look for the file you need, then use the arrows to see all its versions.

  • When you find the version you want, select Restore to save it in its original location. To save it in a different place, right-click Restore, select Restore to, and then choose a new location.


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Quick Tip: Use The Update Assistant To Get The May 2019 Windows 10 Update

If you are seeing that your Windows 10 version is no longer going to be supported after November 2019, don’t fret… You simply need to update to the current version which is 1903. To get your computer up-to-date, click on the link below to, look for the update assistant, and click on “Update Now”. Please realize, this type of update may take time for the update to complete; especially, if you are several versions behind. Also, I would be concerned that my computer did not auto-update to the current version(s).

Source: Microsoft – Download Windows 10


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Which is the better hard drive? The HDD (Hard Disk Drive) or The SSD (Solid State Drive)

The hard drive is the device inside your computer that stores your personal files and stores the files that work together to operate your computer (such as the Windows Operating System files). Over the years the hard drive has transformed from the HDD mechanical hard disk drive (with high-speed moving parts) to now what is known as the SSD solid-state drive (with no moving parts).

Below is a quick read summary to show how the SSD (Solid State Drive) is really your better option in today’s world of computing; but, both options are still available for purchase and both serve a purpose (i.e. CLICK HERE to see pricing for HDD – CLICK HERE to see pricing for SSD).

HDD = Hard Disk Drive = metal platters/mechanical = 2.5″/3.5″ common size = Large Storage Capacities = Moving Parts = Increased Heat = Degradation of Parts = Louder = Slower = Less Expensive = Good for File Storage

HDD vs SSD

SSD = Solid State Drive = flash / non-mechanical = 2.5″ common size = Smaller Storage Capacities = No Moving Parts = Decreased Heat = Better Longevity = Quieter = Faster = More Expensive (but not by much in comparison).= Great for Primary Storage of the Operating System and Great Upgrade Option for Older PC’s

Thank you for visiting — Rick @ What’s On My PC


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Quick Tip: Four “Must Learn” Gmail Search Operators

I have been using Gmail since its’ inception and as a result, I literally have thousands of email that have accumulated in the account. Searching for a specific email in a sea of thousands of emails can be a daunting task. Many times I can simply enter the person’s name into the search box to find the email I am looking for; however, there are times where I need to use special search operators to quickly narrow down the result. This is where I have taught myself to use these four search operators to narrow down exactly what email I am looking for.

Specify the sender… 

from:
Example: from:amy

Specify a recipient…

to:
Example: to:david

Specify a recipient who received a copy…

cc:
bcc:
Example: cc:david

Words in the subject line…

subject:
Example: subject:dinner


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Quick Tip: How to keep your computer healthy and cool…

Below are 10 best practices to keep your computer cool (published by The Windows Club). I encourage you to visit their site to get a detailed explanation of each practice.

  • Don’t overload your system with unnecessary software
  • Remove obstacles near the computer’s vents and keep the computer desk clean
  • Keep your cabinet’s case closed
  • Clean your computer
  • Avoid overclocking
  • Check the system’s power supply fan
  • Use water coolers for your computer
  • Move your system to a cooler location
  • Use case fans and component fans
  • Consider a phase change unit.

Continue Reading @ The Windows Club


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Quick Tip: One of the first things to try when you experience a computer problem…

Windows PC’s are great when everything is working as it should; but, when trouble comes along (and it will), there are some basic steps you can follow that most likely will help you resolve the issue. The web site, Addictive Tips, has put together 5 basic troubleshooting steps to fix Windows 10 problems that you should try. My favorite on the list is, “Restart System”. As a matter of fact, not only does this apply to just computers, this often applies to any type of electronic device. A complete shutdown and restart of the computer or device often will resolve the issue.


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Quick Tip: How To Set A Reminder Using Google Assistant

Here’s how to leave yourself reminders using Google Assistant 
by

Google Assistant is great for doing a whole bunch of things, but one of the best perks of having a digital assistant at your beck and call is the ability to quickly add helpful reminders of all sorts for you and your family. Reminders made with Google Assistant are entirely customizable and can be set up for events of all sorts, from events recurring weekly, monthly, one-off reminders throughout your day. Here’s how to set them up.

Continue Reading @ Android Central


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Quick Tip: How To Watch FREE Channels and Movies On Roku

Recently, I have been intensely exploring FREE online TV and Movie options that don’t cost one penny. I am sure you have heard of Roku, the very reputable online TV and Movie Service that is often included in many of today’s Smart TVs. As a matter of fact, one of my very first devices to connect to a TV to receive online content was a Roku and I can tell you that was many years back when the first Roku came out.

During my exploration for FREE online services I came across that Roku recently opened a FREE side to their service, called “The Roku Channel” and let me tell you, it is worth taking a looking at. Simply click on the source link at the end of this post to get started. There is no obligation to buy anything. Once signed up you will have access to some online TV content and movies that they have selected. For example, there is ABC News, Weather Nation, USAToday, TMZ; to name only a few… To further enhance your FREE Roku Channel, get the Roku Mobile App and you can watch your channels and movies on the go. Continue reading “Quick Tip: How To Watch FREE Channels and Movies On Roku”

Quick Tip: The Different Types of Windows 10 Updates

by Mayank Parmar @ Bleeping Computer

Most folks at home that own Windows-based computers typically learn about Windows updates early on in the ownership of their computers. The update process, most of the time is transparent to the user; but, there are the times when they are very evident to user, such as when Windows 10 performs a feature update (which is actually an upgrade in my opinion) where the update process can consume a lot of time before completion. I know myself, I keep my fingers crossed when updates roll out. In this article, at Bleeping Computer, I encourage you to read so that you will quickly learn about Windows updates and the different type of updates. Yes, there is more than one type of update…  Rick @ What’s On My PC

Microsoft pushes out a variety of monthly updates that fix bugs, compatibility issues, performance enhancements, and security updates. Windows 10 is also updated twice a year with new “Feature Updates” that aim to modify the Windows 10 experience in a significant way.

Windows Update

Learn More @ Bleeping Computer


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Quick Tip: 7 cool Android features you might not know about – Android Authority

by Scott Adam Gordon @ Android Authority

What I truly love about Android is that you learn something new everyday that you did not know about. Scott Adam Gordon @ Andorid Authority has put together 7-seven neat features baked into Android that you may not be aware of. I can tell you, I was not aware of them… — Rick @ What’s On My PC

One of the great things about Android is how intuitive it is. The majority of its most important features are easily accessed and clearly identifiable (like screen brightness). But there are some useful features that are hidden away or aren’t clearly explained. Here, we’ve gathered some of the best Android features you might have missed.

Note: These tips are based on Android Pie and may not be available on other Android versions.

Google app shortcuts shown on a smartphone.

Continue Reading @ Android Authority


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Quick Tip: How To Turn A Gmail Account Into A Powerful Note-Taking And Note-Keeping App

Evernote, OneNote, and SimpleNote are the note-taking apps that we all hear about. I have accounts with all three and have used them extensively; however, I just cannot get settled with any of them. I initially started out with a free Evernote account; then, Evernote ended up limiting what you could and could not do. OneNote, great note-taking app; however, I was never completely satisfied with the app, due to its’ slowness (in loading and performing searches). Simplenote, which is text-based only (with some markup language) is ok if all you want to do is save text-based notes.

After using all three of these, I kept thinking, there has to be a better way. This is when I came up with the idea of creating and using a separate Gmail account from my personal Gmail account to specifically store notes, documents, etc. Continue reading “Quick Tip: How To Turn A Gmail Account Into A Powerful Note-Taking And Note-Keeping App”

Quick Tip: 10 truly helpful Windows 10 tools you might not know about

by Brad Chacos @ PCWorld

Windows 10 offers many other power tools for enthusiasts—if you know where to find them. Some are older, yet still obscure. Others are relatively new, added during the twice-annual major upgrades Microsoft’s been pushing out since Windows 10 launched nearly four long years ago (though the second update looks to be minor this year). But all 10 of these little-used tricks and tools can help hardened PC users save time or eliminate headaches.

microsoft surface laptop

Learn More @ PCWorld


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Quick Tip: How to Copy a Google Keep Note Directly to Google Docs

by Spencer Depas @ Gadget Hacks

A nice side effect of moving a Keep note to Google Docs is that it makes the note easier to move to another platform. Once it’s saved as a Google Doc, you can export it as a Microsoft Word doc, a PDF, or even an ePUB. I’ve also found some situations where I wanted to de-clutter Google Keep, but I did not want to delete my potentially important note. In these cases, I will copy it to Google Docs and then delete the note on Google Keep.

Learn More @ Gadget Hacks


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Quick Tip: How to search for text in your Google Photos pictures

by TechRepublic

A new Google Lens feature will allow Google Photos users to search for text in pictures and screenshots, Google Photos confirmed on Twitter Thursday. The feature could make it much easier to find things like business cards, Wi-Fi passwords that were saved in a photo, or receipts for expense reports and tax reporting purposes, our sister site ZDNet noted.

googlephotoshero.jpg

Source: How to search for text in your Google Photos pictures – TechRepublic


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Quick Tip: How to Protect Your Parents From Online Dating Scams

by Lifehacker

Last year, an estimated 21,000 Americans were victims of online dating scams, losing a combined $143 million. (On Thursday, prosecutors charged 80 scammers in connection with scams that targeted businesses and elderly women.) If your parent is on a dating site, it should come as no surprise that you shouldn’t let them give out their credit card number. But it’s just as important to make sure they don’t exchange numbers or social media accounts.

Illustration for article titled How to Protect Your Parents From Online Dating Scams

Learn More @ Lifehacker


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How to Track a Phone Using Android or iOS

by Digital Trends

If you’ve got a smartphone, consider installing the apps listed below. There are several app choices available for your phone, but also remember to set up any included phone-locating software that comes with your device. That includes Apple’s Find My iPhone, Google’s Find My Device, and Samsung’s Find My Mobile. If you’re looking for more choices, try out the following apps.

Source: How to Track a Phone Using Android or iOS | Digital Trends

Quick Tip: How to add Emergency Information to your Android Device

by Phandroid

With your personal health and safety, you can never be too careful! Accidents and incidents happen all the time. People fall ill suddenly and need personal help, either by ambulance services or passers-by. Having an emergency contact or important information may need to know about the person’s general health if they’re unconscious and unable to answer important medical questions. Since our smartphone is typically the device we carry with us all the time, that information can be made readily available from the lock screen.

Learn More @ Phandroid


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Quick Tip: Try this to get the NEW Android Auto Update

If you been waiting for the Android Auto Update with the new interface that folks have been raving about and it still has not rolled out to your phone; then, give this a try to see if you can make it happen sooner.

  • Open Android Auto on your phone.
  • Tap the “Hamburger Icon” in the upper left corner.
  • Select “Settings”, then (if eligible) you should see at the top of the screen an option to “Try the new Android Auto”. Toggle that option to activate it.
  • Once activated this should begin the process to update your Android Auto to the new Android Auto interface and you should see the new interface when you plug your phone into your car.


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Quick Tip: Creating A Windows Desktop Shortcut With Google Chrome

Creating a desktop shortcut using Google Chrome is quite easy. By creating a shortcut on your Window’s desktop to a favorite site will get you to the site quickly by simply clicking on the shortcut. I personally have shortcuts on the desktop to my Gmail, my calendar, my notes, my Google Drive, etc…

Here are the steps to create a Windows desktop shortcut with Google Chrome:

  • Open Google Chrome and go to the site you desire to create a shortcut for. In my case, I went to my site at www.whatsonmypc.net.
  • Once the site loads, go to the top right corner of the browser and click on the three vertical dots to open the Google Chrome Menu.
  • When the menu opens, click on “More Tools”; then click on “Create Shortcut”

  • When the “Create Shortcut” dialog box appears, you can name the shortcut whatever you want to name it. In this case, I named the shortcut “What’s On My PC”. I typically keep the name of the shortcut to a short easily identifiable name.

  • You will also see an option where you can open the shortcut as a Window if you desire. My advice, leave the box unchecked.
  • Click on “Create” and the shortcut will be created on your Windows desktop where it makes it easy for you to go directly to the site.
  • If you decide you no longer want the shortcut, simply delete it from the desktop.

More “Quick Tips” Here

 

 

 

Quick Tip: See All Chromebook Keyboard Shortcuts By Using A Keyboard Shortcut

The Chromebook, which runs off the Google Chrome OS platform, is a different beast in itself; BUT, let me tell you this, “I love my Chromebook”… I find myself using it more and more. If interested in seeing the different Chromebooks and their pricing — CLICK HERE

If you are the proud owner of a Chromebook here is a quick way to get to a guide that will show you all the “Chromebook Keyboard Shortcuts”. To get to the guide, simply Press Ctrl + Alt + ?  at the same time on your keyboard. You can browse through the different keyboard shortcuts or you can search for them. Below is a screenshot of what I am seeing on my Chromebook. If your Chromebook OS has not been updated you may see a screen overlay of a keyboard instead.

My favorite keyboard shortcut is Ctrl + Shift + []]] button (above the 6 key). This shortcut will allow you to take a partial screenshot.


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Quick Tip: When getting rid of your iOS, Android or Windows devices it is important to wipe the data. Here’s how…

What I have found that most people when they get rid of their devices they neglect to erase or wipe the device clean of their personal information (files, pictures, contacts, messages, etc…). The National Cyber Security Centre,  UK’s independent authority on cybersecurity, has a nice tech writeup on resetting (wiping clean) and reprovisioning your iOS, Android and Windows Devices (see source link below).

Quick Reference

For each platform, the most useful restore methods are explained in full, alongside the risks of using them. We then recommend one of the methods to use for the following four common scenarios:

  • Scenario 1: Sanitising a device believed to be compromised with malware
  • Scenario 2: Preparing a device which has not previously been managed
  • Scenario 3: Reissuing a device to a different user in the same security environment
  • Scenario 4: Sanitising a device for release to lower security domain or sale

Platform-specific advice:

Quick Tip: Learn How To Digitally Preview Your “U.S. Mail” In Your “Email” Before You Go To The Mailbox

Did you know that the U.S. Postal Service has a feature available that allows you to digitally preview what mail you have arriving before you even go to your mailbox? 

It is called “Informed Delivery” and it is available for FREE through the U.S. Postal Service. To get started — CLICK HERE — to sign up… It is a 3-step process where you will create your account, verify your identity, and receive notifications.

Once your account is created, it may take a period of time before you will start seeing the notifications in your email account. Once you start receiving the notifications in your email you will be able to view grayscale images of the exterior, address side of letter-sized mailpieces scheduled to arrive soon. You can also check the delivery status of packages and when they’re scheduled to arrive. If for some reason you do not start seeing the email previews, make sure you check your spam folder in your email client.

I have been using the service for quite a while and has saved me from making unnecessary trips to the mailbox.


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Quick Tip: Should I Turn My Computer Off At Night?

Here at “What’s On My PC”, since the beginning of time, I shut down all my computer’s at night. In the morning I power the computers back up and let the computers go into sleep mode during the day when not using the computers (if I am at home). If I leave home, I shut the computers down. I do all of the above for online security reasons, home safety reasons and I like the idea that every day the computers are being refreshed when starting up in the morning. Computers sort of have a mind of their own… If you click on the source link below, you will find a good read where various gamers tell you their thinking on this.

Depending who you ask, turning off your PC at night is either a good way to save electricity or a good way to speed up the deterioration of your hardware. Or maybe it’ll help prevent the build-up of dust. Or maybe powering down and then up again uses more electricity than just leaving it to hibernate would. Or maybe the RGB gremlins will get sad if you don’t leave a light on for them. At this point there’s so much conflicting advice, it’s tempting to just throw up your hands and stop caring.

Source: Do you turn your PC off at night? | PC Gamer

Quick Tip: How To Send (and Request) Money Using Gmail

Who would have ever thought you would be able to send (and receive) money using email. With Google’s Gmail, you can. When composing an email in Gmail, at the bottom, you will see a “$” sign. If you click on that “$’ sign you will be walked through the process of sending money where a Google Pay, Debit or Bank Account is required. You can send the money to any email recipient, does not have to be another Gmail account, and it is free so long as you have one of the three bank accounts as mentioned. The first time a recipient receives money through Gmail, they will need to add a debit card to transfer the money to. After that first time, whenever someone sends money through Gmail, it will automatically and seamlessly transfer to that card.  You can also “request” money using the Gmail ‘$” feature, as well.


More “Quick Tips” Here

Quick Tip: Do Not Plug A Laser Printer Into An UPS

Using an uninterrupted power supply (UPS) to plug your computer and monitor into is a good thing; BUT, it is not a good idea to plug a laser printer into a UPS.

Why? 

Laser printers produce a high current draw that will “sag” the utility line causing low voltage situations. You may get away with plugging into the UPS for a while, but eventually, the powering up of the laser printer (especially during print jobs) will weaken the battery in the UPS. In one case I experienced, the user reported that their computer was shutting down during print jobs. The cause was the laser printer was plugged into their UPS. I have seen where a separate UPS is used exclusively for laser printers, but most people at home are not going to go to that expense.

What is a UPS (uninterrupted power supply)?

For those who do not know what a UPS (uninterrupted power supply) is…  CLICK HERE to see examples. Typically a UPS will have multiple outlets with some of those outlets reserved exclusively for battery backup. All the outlets typically will offer surge protection. For home use, you will be plugging the computer and monitor into the battery backup side of the UPS. When a power outage occurs, the computer and monitor will remain “ON” for a period of time so that you can safely save your files and safely shut down the computer.


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