Articles tagged: bestof
Downloading a file from the internet is easy – typically just a click or two. But knowing and controlling where downloads go takes a little more effort.
Multi-core processors add an additional layer of complexity to software design. Occasionally that can manifest as only 25% of the CPU being used.
When you get a new machine, creating a new machine image backup as soon as you can is a convenient way to reinstall should you ever need to.
For some reason many people’s gut reaction to a malware infestation is to consider getting a new computer. That’s just … wrong.
Sometimes you may want to explicitly keep someone from contacting you. Ignoring them is often simplest, but there are tools to help as well.
A new computer is a major purchase and knowing what kind to get isn’t easy. I’ll review some of the important things to think about when deciding, starting with the type of device you’ll want.
IExplore.exe, aka Internet Explorer or ‘IE’, can crash, but it’s not always its fault. We’ll look at some of the things that can cause IExplore.exe to crash, and steps you can take.
Windows Explorer is the workhorse behind the Windows user interface. In many ways it *is* Windows. I’ll cover what to look for when it crashes.
The the Outlook PST file or Personal STorage file can easily grow to an extreme size. Here’s a 4-step plan to managing that size and getting it back under control.
Programs typically don’t use all available memory unless they either need it, or they have a problem.
Closing an email account is many people’s first reaction to getting hacked and seeing spam sent from the account. It rarely helps, if even possible. I’ll explain.
Cookies are placed on your machine by websites — often more websites than you realize. We’ll review cookies and how third parties can use them.
Process Monitor is a powerful tool and it can be used to track down exactly what program on your machine is responsible for internet activity.
While you cannot find the specific owner of an IP address, I’ll look at a few tools to see what IP-related information you can get.
When you defrag files the pieces of the file are physically arranged for quicker access. But you can’t defrag some files. At least, not easily.
A computer memory upgrade can be an easy and inexpensive way to improve system performance, but how do you know if an upgrade is called for?
Random crashes are annoying and difficult to diagnose. I’ll review common causes and steps you can take to determine what’s happening on your computer.
Most computers with a CD or DVD drive can boot from that drive, but it frequently takes a small configuration change in the computer’s BIOS.
People often use free email providers for critical data only to lose everything when a problem occurs. So what do you look for in an email provider?
While the technology continues to improve, the fact is that flash memory has a limited number of times it can be written to. It can, in fact, wear out.
How can I find out what program keeps popping up in my taskbar and disappearing before I can click on it?
It’s not uncommon to see programs quickly come and go. There are a few ways to try and capture what they are; some technical, and some innovative.
The most effective way to speed up a system is to clean it up, have it run fewer programs, and give it more resources like RAM.
A website’s automatic sign-in may suddenly stop working when cookies are deleted from your machine.
It turns out that resetting your Windows account password is frighteningly easy as long as you have physical access to the machine.
ISO files are a common disk image distribution format. We’ll look at the best ways to open ISO files, as well as a couple of ways to create them.
Sometimes, it seems like spam is a tidal wave of junk that threatens to make email completely unusable. While you can’t stop spam, you can manage it very well with a good spam filter.
The difference between the various types of things we might call “memory” is a fundamental concept that’s often confused. I’ll review the basics.
At some point, you’re going to need your Windows installation CD/DVD. If you don’t have it, you could be severely out of luck. I’ll review alternatives.
There are various options to access one email account from multiple computers, and there are pros and cons to each.
Windows is constantly starting and stopping programs as part of its normal operations. You can see exactly what programs are being run using a Windows technique called process auditing.
If your webmaster leaves unexpectedly, you can have a lot of trouble getting access to your own website. I’ll review some of the things that you need to do to prepare – just in case.
We’ll try to isolate the reason your forwards are getting multiplied, and then look at the only way to really stop the problem once and for all!
It is not reliably possible to determine if an email has been read or opened. They keyword there is reliably. There are techniques that get some information, but it’s impossible to be 100% accurate.
Emailing large attachments is typically a bad idea as your mail is likely to not be delivered. We’ll look into alternatives.
Outlook’s PST or Personal STore is a single file that holds your email, contacts, and more. You can use Outlook itself to find the location of the file.
Backing up is actually easier with digital information. One copy of an old photograph is not backed up!
You can’t add data to an image to make it better, but there are some tricks that can make it visually more appealing.
Resource Monitor is a helpful little system resource examination tool that doesn’t get nearly the press it deserves. I’ll review what it can do.
In my opinion, background updates are awesome. I love that Chrome is always up to date without my ever even having to think about it. Let’s look at why.
Advertisements, just like in newspapers or magazines, are nothing more than rented space on a page and should never be confused with recommendations.
Unexplained disk activity turns out to be fairly easy to identify with the right tools. We’ll use Process Monitor to track disk activity.
The Windows system utility CHKDSK is a powerful and useful tool in diagnosing and repairing certain types of disk problems. I’ll review several ways to run it, and try and describe what it does.
The Taskbar and Start button disappeared. We’ll look at solutions for several reasons why this might have happened.
There are several ways websites can reasonably approximate your location and serve up ads specific to locale. We’ll look at each.
One way to reclaim space (and occasionally even performance) is to uninstall software you don’t need. I’ll review two important places to help you do just that.
Upgrading a computer can be a lot of work, is going to cost some money, and depends on your needs. I’ll show you where to start.
DHCP stands for Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol, and is how computers request and receive “dynamic” IP addresses as well as additional configuration information.
Windows File Compression automatically compresses files so they take up less space. In the best of circumstances, it can free up a lot of space, but all too frequently it’s not as much as you might expect, and there is a cost.
Sharing your wireless internet access with a neighbor might seem like a friendly thing to do, but be aware that you are potentially putting your own computers at risk.
Every few days, we get forwarded email warning us about everything from lost children to free money. They’re mostly bogus, and known as urban legends.