Articles tagged: Featured

If I Send to a Bad Email Address, Will Someone See It?

People often send email to the wrong address by mistake. But what happens if the email address is invalid?

I Lost My Phone With My Second Factor for Authentication. How Do I Recover?

My phoned died, and with it, all the two-factor authentication methods I’d used it for. Here’s how I recovered.

How Full Is My Hotmail Account?

Microsoft will show you how much space your Hotmail/Outlook.com/Microsoft account is using, if you know where to look.

I’m Told to Change My Password. Why?

If you’ve been told to change your password, do so, but do so in the right way. I’ll explain what that means and why it’s important.

You Are Not Too Old for Technology

I keep hearing from people who consider themselves too old. They’re not. Don’t be like them.

“Default Boot Device Missing or Boot Failed” – What Now?

My laptop died. Here’s the process I went through to resurrect it.

How Do I Force the Latest Windows Feature Update?

Windows feature updates are supposed to be delivered in a somewhat timely fashion. If not, or if you’re just impatient, you can force the issue.

How Safe is Kaspersky Internet Security?

Any software company with ties outside the U.S. comes under scrutiny. Should you be worried?

How Do I Downgrade Windows 11 to Windows 10?

Give Windows 11 a shot, but know that you can go back to Windows 10 if you need to.

What’s a QR Code?

QR codes are a nifty way to encode web addresses and other text in a way that’s easy for your smartphone to decode, but they are not without risk.

What Good Is an Image Backup If All I Want Is My Data?

Image backups are great ways to back up absolutely everything on a hard disk. They’re also good for retrieving most anything, including individual files.

Why Do an Image Backup If I Can Factory Reset?

Factory reset is a great option to have, but it doesn’t cover all the scenarios a full image backup does.

How Do I Create a Local Account in Windows 10?

The ability to create a local user account on Windows hasn’t been removed; it’s just not obvious where to find it.

How Do I Prevent a Repeat of Ransomware?

All malware is scary, especially ransomware due to the damage it can inflict. Here’s how to avoid a repeat performance.

Am I Safe?

There is no such thing as absolute safety. But there are definitely steps you can take to be as safe as possible.

Someone Is in My Computer, Controlling it. What Can I Do?

When things behave unexpectedly, many people assume their computer has been compromised by remote hackers. Many of those people are wrong.

How Do I Turn Off BitLocker on a Drive?

BitLocker is a fine approach to encrypting hard drives, especially the system drive. It’s easy to turn off BitLocker if you decide you no longer need it.

Why Your “Unimportant” Accounts Matter

Regardless of your initial thoughts, every account is important, and we are all targets.

How Secure Is Email?

Email is ubiquitous and convenient, yet surprisingly, not particularly secure. I’ll look at why that is and when you should worry.

Can I Move My Hard Drive to a New Computer and Have Windows Work?

Windows configures itself to the hardware it finds — but changing everything at once by moving the system disk to a different machine might be too much.

How Do I Free Up Space in Gmail?

There are several ways to deal with an overflowing Google Drive.

Why “Always Keep on this Device” Doesn’t

The “Always keep on this device” feature has misled people into deleting and losing important files. Here’s why, and what to do instead.

How Hackers Use Malicious Attachments to Give You Malware

Another day, another report of hackers exploiting vulnerabilities. Here’s how you stay safe.

Why Is My OneDrive Full?

OneDrive tries to make it easy to back up important folders, but at the cost of making some things very confusing.

How Do I Find Good Local Computer Help?

Good help is hard to find. That’s just as true when it comes to finding good local computer service and support as it is anywhere else.

Should I Repair or Replace My Computer?

Repair or replace can be a difficult decision. I’ll review a few factors to consider when deciding.

How I Avoid Social Media Algorithms

The goal of many social media companies is to keep you engaged as long as possible. You can avoid social media algorithms and take back (some) control.

How Does Facebook Track Me Even If I Don’t Have an Account?

Facebook can use standard web protocols to get an idea of what you’re doing online, even if you don’t have an account.

How Long Should I Keep Backups?

Having a regular backup system in place is critical. But then what? I’ll look at how long you might want to keep those backups, why, and how long I keep mine.

Is Passwordless Authentication Safe?

Passwordless authentication removes the need for a password and replaces it with something else. But can that be secure?

My Favorite Question

My favorite question? You’ll never guess. Hint: it makes my job super easy, and you don’t want that.

I’m Suddenly Getting More Spam Emails. Should I Be Worried?

A sudden flood of additional spam is not unusual. I’ll look at why I think it happens, and when I start to worry.

What Is a TPM? And Why Do I Need One?

Windows 11 hardware requirements brought the TPM, or Trusted Platform Module, into the spotlight. I’ll touch on what it is, why your machine might not appear to have one, and what to do if it doesn’t.

Do Random Words Make Better Passwords?

As few as three random words make better passwords than strings of random characters — but not, perhaps, for the reasons you think.

Responses to Your Three Common Password Manager Objections

Password vaults are a common recommendation by security professionals to improve your online security. Why do so many resist?

A Data Breach Has My Data. What Do I Do?

Another day, another breach. What should you do if you’re involved?

7 Signs of Phishing to Watch For

A friend received a fairly convincing phishing attempt. I’ll cover the signs that showed it was bogus.

Why Am I Getting Email Sent to an Email Address Similar to Mine?

It’s not uncommon to get unexpected email sent to an email address similar to your own. I’ll review why that is and what to do about it.

My Keyboard Won’t Work after Windows Update. How Do I Fix It?

If your keyboard won’t work after a Windows Update, there’s a lengthy list of things to try to get it back.

Why Am I Still Getting Updates for Windows 7?

Windows Update can update more than just the Windows operating system. So keeping it up to date is still a good idea.

How Long Will Windows 10 Be Supported?

Exactly how long Windows 10 will be supported has changed since its original release. The original expectations were unrealistic at best.

No Email from LastPass? Dealing with Sign-In Problems

While travelling, I signed in to my LastPass account only to be told I needed to confirm an email message that never arrived — or so I thought.

How To Use Microsoft Word for Transcriptions

Microsoft Word online has the option to create transcriptions of audio recordings for Microsoft Office subscribers.

Did Microsoft Lie?

The release of Windows 11 proved the statement that Windows 10 would be the last version of Windows to be wrong. But was it a lie?

How I Fixed a Failed Windows 10 Update

Windows Update generally works. Here’s the successful approach I took when it didn’t.

When Backups Might Not Save You from Ransomware

Ransomware is known for encrypting your data and holding it hostage. It turns out that it can do more that backups won’t protect against.

Someone Has My IP Address – Should I Be Scared?

If someone threatens you because they know your IP address, it’s an empty threat.

Should I Just Hire a Hacker to Recover My Account?

Desperation can lead you to consider hiring so-called “legit”, “ethical”, or “white-hat” hackers to regain control of a your account. Don’t do it.

Just What Is a Hack?

Hack or hacking can mean several different things — both good and bad — depending on the context. I’ll review the most common definitions.

How Should I Back Up Email?

Configuring a PC-based email program to use IMAP and have it constantly download email as a backup is a reasonable way to go.