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Chris Hoffman

Chris Hoffman is a technology writer and all-around computer geek. He's as at home using the Linux terminal as he is digging into the Windows registry. Connect with him on Google+.

Can you not see your laptop’s screen in a bright room, or do you think the colors on your desktop computer’s display look dull and lifeless? Maybe you chose the wrong type of display coating.

about 8 months ago - by  |  11 Replies

If you’re one of the lucky ones, you have a choice of different Internet service providers in your area. Don’t just trust the advertised speeds — look at the data to find the fastest ISP near you.

about 8 months ago - by  |  2 Replies

Windows has quite a few features for automatically arranging windows, placing them side by side or tiling them on your screen. These features are a bit hidden, so you may not have noticed them.

about 8 months ago - by  |  7 Replies

If the paperless office isn’t here for you yet, you can print from your iPad or iPhone. Sure, you can’t directly connect a printer to your iPad, but there are plenty of ways to print wirelessly.

about 8 months ago - by  |  3 Replies

There are two big choices when it comes to reading eBooks. You can go with either a dedicated eReader, like a Kindle Paperwhite, or a tablet with an LCD screen, like an iPad — but which is best?

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When you don’t have unlimited mobile data on your Android or iPhone, every megabyte counts. Mobile browsers like Google Chrome and Opera offer a built in data compression feature, allowing you to browse with less data.

about 8 months ago - by  |  5 Replies

There is a huge number of antivirus programs to choose from, so how do you find the best one? Do you use what came with your computer or what your friend recommended? How do you know if it’s any good?

about 8 months ago - by  |  29 Replies

Many computer users were trained never to turn their PCs off by pressing the power button on their desktop PC’s case. This used to cause problems in the previous millennium, but it’s now perfectly safe to shut down with the power button.

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Apple sells Apple Remote Desktop on the Mac App Store for $80, but you don’t have to spend any money to remotely connect to your Mac. There are free solutions — including one built into your Mac.

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Microsoft Office saves hidden metadata in your Office documents, including how long you’ve been working on them, the name of everyone who’s worked on the document, when the document was created, and even previous versions of the document.

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Once a month, a new version of the Malicious Software Removal tool appears in Windows Update. This tool removes some malware from Windows systems, particularly those systems without antivirus programs installed.

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The Mission Control feature in Mac OS X allows you to arrange windows into several different screens you can quickly switch between. This feature was formerly known as Spaces, and is called virtual desktops or workspaces on Linux.

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Not all Wi-Fi networks are created equal. Wi-Fi access points can function in either “ad-hoc” or “infrastructure” mode, and many WI-Fi-enabled devices can only connect to infrastructure-mode networks, not ad-hoc ones.

about 8 months ago - by  |  1 Reply

A keylogger is a piece of software — or, even scarier, a hardware device — that logs every key you press on your keyboard. It can capture personal messages, passwords, credit card numbers, and everything else you type.

about 8 months ago - by  |  9 Replies

Bill Gates famously said “two years from now, spam will be solved” back in 2004. It’s now ten years later and more than 70% of emails are spam, according to Kaspersky. Why is spam still such a problem?

about 8 months ago - by  |  18 Replies

Windows 8′s desktop hasn’t seen many improvements for touch use, but even 8-inch Windows tablets have a desktop.┬áIf you have to use the desktop with your finger, these tips will help you avoid frustration.

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Spam seems to arrive in every single email account we use, no matter how careful we are. How are spammers getting all our email addresses? And can we do anything to hide our email address from spammers?

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Many laptops now include a combined headphone and microphone jack instead of two separate audio jacks. This trend started with smartphones and tablets, but has spread to MacBooks, ultrabooks, and convertibles like Microsoft’s Surface Pro.

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Intel x86 or x64 processors have traditionally been found in laptops and desktops, while ARM processors have been found in lower-power embedded devices, smartphones, and tablets. But you can now buy laptops with ARM chips and smartphones with Intel chips.

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Are you having a problem with your Internet connection or Wi-Fi? Whatever the problem — from a flaky connection to Wi-Fi troubles or even no access to the Internet at all — some router troubleshooting could fix things.

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Malware isn’t the only online threat to worry about. Social engineering is a huge threat, and it can hit you on any operating system. In fact, social engineering can also occur over the phone and in face-to-face situations.

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A false positive is a mistake that happens occasionally — the antivirus thinks a download is harmful when it’s actually safe. But malicious people may try to trick you into downloading malware with this assurance.

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Windows 8 was very different from Windows 7, but change is only speeding up — Windows 8.1 has seen quite a few changes since Windows 8. You’ll have new things to learn, whichever which version of Windows you’re upgrading from.

about 8 months ago - by  |  1 Reply

Chrome 32 now offers a new feature on Windows 8: A full-screen, Chrome OS-style desktop mode. The Chrome app launcher can bring Chrome OS to the Windows desktop, but Chrome can now replace the Windows desktop entirely.

about 9 months ago - by  |  1 Reply

Steam Machines, also known as Steamboxes, are Valve’s attempt at bringing PC gaming to the living room. In a way, they’ll compete with game consoles like the Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and Wii U.

about 9 months ago - by  |  18 Replies