PC games usually have built-in graphics options that you can change. However, you’re not limited to the options built into games — the graphics control panels bundled with graphics drivers allow you to tweak options from outside PC games.
If your computer is infected with malware, running an antivirus within Windows may not be enough to remove it. If your computer has a rootkit, the malware may be able to hide itself from your antivirus software.
The Developer Options menu in Android is a hidden menu with a variety of advanced options. These options are intended for developers, but many of them will be interesting to geeks.
Viruses and other types of malware seem largely confined to Windows in the real world. Even on a Windows 8 PC, you can still get infected with malware. But how vulnerable are other operating systems to malware?
iTunes isn’t an amazing program on Windows. There was a time when Apple device users had to plug their devices into their PCs or Macs and use iTunes for device activation, updates, and syncing, but iTunes is no longer necessary.
Android phones — and tablets, too — display animations when moving between apps and screens. These animations look very slick, but they waste time — especially on fast phones, which could switch between apps instantly if not for the animations.
Most people seem to call every type of malware a “virus”, but that isn’t technically accurate. You’ve probably heard of many more terms beyond virus: malware, worm, Trojan, rootkit, keylogger, spyware, and more. But what do all these terms mean?
Keyboard shortcuts are practically essential for using any type of PC. They’ll speed up almost everything you do. But long lists of keyboard shortcuts can quickly become overwhelming if you’re just getting started.
Let’s be honest: The Windows desktop is a mess. Sure, it’s extremely powerful and has a huge software library, but it’s not a good experience for average people. It’s not even a good experience for geeks, although we tolerate it.
If your computer becomes infected with a virus or another piece of malware, removing the malware from your computer is only the first step. There’s more you need to do to ensure you’re secure.
Before Windows 8.1, it was possible to sync any folder on your computer with SkyDrive using symbolic links. This method no longer works now that SkyDrive is baked into Windows 8.1, but there are other tricks you can use.
The WinSXS folder at C:\Windows\WinSXS is massive and continues to grow the longer you have Windows installed. This folder builds up unnecessary files over time, such as old versions of system components.
Apple loves to criticize the state of Android tablet apps when pushing its own iPad tablets. But just how bad is the Android tablet app situation? Should you avoid Android tablets like the Nexus 7 because of the apps?
Bloatware is still a big problem on new Windows 8 and 8.1 PCs. Some websites will tell you that you can easily get rid of manufacturer-installed bloatware with Windows 8′s Reset feature, but they’re generally wrong.
Many people swear by multiple monitors, whether they’re geeks or just people who need to be productive. Why use just one monitor when you can use two or more and see more at once?
Android allows developers to replace its keyboard with their own keyboard apps. This has led to experimentation and great new features, like the gesture-typing feature that’s made its way into Android’s official keyboard after proving itself in third-party keyboards.
Android allows you to customize your home screen, adding widgets, arranging shortcuts and folders, choosing a background, and even replacing the included launcher entirely. You can install icon packs to theme your app icons, too.
Cell phone contracts are bad. You get a seemingly cheap phone up front, but you more than pay for the cost of the phone over two years. Prepaid phone plans are surging in North America for a reason.
Ransomware is a type of malware that tries to extort money from you. One of the nastiest examples, CryptoLocker, takes your files hostage and holds them for ransom, forcing you to pay hundreds of dollars to regain access.
iPads and Android tablets can’t run Windows apps locally, but they can access a Windows desktops remotely — even with a physical keyboard. In a pinch, the same tricks can be used to access a Windows desktop from a smartphone.
Heat is a computer’s enemy. Computers are designed with heat dispersion and ventilation in mind so they don’t overheat. If too much heat builds up, your computer may become unstable or suddenly shut down.
Printer ink is expensive, more expensive per drop than fine champagne or even human blood. If you haven’t gone paperless, you’ll notice that you’re paying a lot for new ink cartridges — more than seems reasonable.
Concluding that your computer has a hardware problem is just the first step. If you’re dealing with a hardware issue and not a software issue, the next step is determining what hardware problem you’re actually dealing with.
Your computer seems to be malfunctioning — it’s slow, programs are crashing or Windows may be blue-screening. Is your computer’s hardware failing, or does it have a software problem that you can fix on your own?
Buy something at an electronics store and you’ll be confronted by a pushy salesperson who insists you need an extended warranty. You’ll also see extended warranties pushed hard when shopping online. But are they worth it?