Lowell Heddings

Lowell Heddings, better known online as the How-To Geek, spends all his free time bringing you fresh geekery on a daily basis. You can follow him on if you'd like.

We installed the top 10 apps from, and you’ll never believe what happened! Well… I guess maybe you might have a good guess. Awful things. Awful things are what happens. Join us for the fun!

about 11 months ago - by  |  97 Replies

Changing this in XP was extremely simple, but in Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 10, or Vista it’s buried behind a few more menus. Here are three routes you can take to open up System Properties:

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If you are a command line junkie like me, and have been testing out Windows… one of the first things you’ll notice is that there is no way to run a command from the run box in “Administrator” mode. Until now.

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Windows 7, Windows 8, 8.1, 10, and Vista include a built-in functionality in Disk Management to shrink and expand partitions. No more 3rd party utilities needed! It’s worth noting that many third-party utilities will be more feature-rich, but you can do the very basic stuff in Windows without adding anything new.

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Most of the How-To Geek team is at CES 2015, and we’re doing a group photo “live blog” of sorts, which just means that we’ll be posting pictures of everything we’re looking at in Vegas, as we’re looking at it (assuming we have a decent Internet connection).

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Many people familiar with prior versions of Windows are curious what happened to the built-in Administrator account that was always created by default. Does this account still exist, and how can you access it?

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Taking ownership of system files or folders in Windows is not a simple task. Whether you use the GUI or the command line, it takes far too many steps. This method works in Windows Vista, 7, 8, 8.1, and 10, and it maybe works in XP, though you won’t need it there.

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Any time you make a change to the Windows Registry, any responsible article will probably tell you to backup the registry first. But how do you do that? It’s not quite as simple as you might think.

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Verizon FIOS is great — the speeds are incredible, and the price is… well, kinda expensive. The real problem is that the terrible router they give you needs to be rebooted all the time, which is a royal pain considering it’s down in the basement. Plus, I don’t want to get off the couch.

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The Mission Control virtual desktops feature built into OS X is really nice, but the one annoyance is that moving windows to a different Space is a little tedious. You can right-click on the icon in the dock, but that’s hardly a solution. Here’s how to do it the easy way.

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We’ve long railed against registry cleaners and system tuners as useless products that waste your money, but how do you go about cleaning up after uninstalling shady freeware? Answer: You don’t. You avoid installing nonsense on your PC to begin with by testing everything in a virtual machine first. Snapshots just make it easier.

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OS X makes dealing with startup items really easy — you just head into the preferences and add or remove things from the list. But if you’re a recent convert to Mac, you might not know how to do it. But now you will.

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If you’re planning on doing a reinstall of Windows but can’t find your product key, you’re in luck because it’s stored in the Windows Registry… it’s just not easy to find, and it’s impossible to read without some help. Luckily, we’re here to help.

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Barely a month had passed after we told you to let Windows Update automatically keep your PC updated before Microsoft decided to make us look bad by releasing a couple of really bad updates that broke people’s computers. So today we’re going to show you how to roll things back should an update break everything.

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Everybody knows about how smartphones auto-correct your text in funny and unintended ways, but in the latest versions, iOS added a predictive word suggestions bar that helps to guess what you’re typing. The problem is that it’s often wrong, and it takes up screen space. So if you want to disable it we’ve got you covered.

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If you’re using Linux as your desktop operating system, you probably are very aware of what version you are running, but what if you need to connect to somebody’s server and do some work? It’s really useful to know exactly what you are dealing with, and luckily it’s also pretty easy.

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Scanning a document in Mac OS X is extremely simple, but for those who might not be familiar, or are coming from Windows, it’s useful to take a quick tour through how it works.

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There are countless ways to copy files between computers, including great sync options like Dropbox, but if you just want to share one of your folders from your Mac to your Windows computer, you can do that easily.

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We’re going to assume that most How-To Geek writers know how to delete the history, cookies, and cache in Mobile Safari, but just in case you don’t know, here is how to do it.

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One of the great things about Linux is that you can do the same thing hundreds of different ways—even something as simple as generating a random password can be accomplished with dozens of different commands. Here’s 10 ways you can do it.

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Clearing the cache on your iPhone or iPad is really easy, but that will log you out of every single website that you were previously logged into, and wipe any other cookie-based preferences. So what if you want to just wipe cookies or cache for a single site?

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If you’ve got loads of icons cluttering up your desktop, you might want a quick way to turn them off without using the context menu; here’s a quick and easy way to make a shortcut key to turn them on or off.

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Drivers aren’t something that you need to be terribly worried about anymore unless you’re a gamer, but when you are troubleshooting a problem it can be useful to see what you have installed. But who wants to click through every item in Device Manager?

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If somebody keeps spamming your phone with unwanted texts, or calling you when you don’t want it, you might be interested to know that you can easily block contacts from texting, calling, or even trying to FaceTime you in iOS even if they aren’t actually a contact.

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Mobile Safari is a really great browser — it’s fast, easy to use, and has most of the features you might want. What it doesn’t have, however, is a good way to view the source code of a page.

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