FEATURED ARTICLES / THE BEST OF HOW-TO GEEK

Intel’s integrated graphics have improved by leaps and bounds over the past few years, but they still aren’t as speedy as dedicated NVIDIA or AMD graphics hardware.  Here’s how to squeeze some more gaming performance out of your Intel HD Graphics.

about 11 months ago - by  |  5 Replies

Modern versions of Windows–and other operating systems–can use either the older Master Boot Record (MBR) or newer GUID Partition Table (GPT) for their partition schemes. Here’s how to check which one a disk is using and convert between the two.

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Windows activation is designed to be as foolproof as possible, so Microsoft’s graphical tools keep it simple. If you want to do something more advanced like remove a product key, force an online activation, or extend the activation timer, you’ll need Slmgr.vbs.

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Twitch.tv is quickly becoming one of the top destinations for game streaming on the web, with video sites like YouTube following closely behind. But you probably already have a decent streaming program on your computer: Steam.

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We’re collectively staying up later, sleeping less, and enduring a lower quality of sleep thanks to the abundance of electronic distractions and the accompanying bright screens. For your health and happiness, it’s time to do something about it.

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If you’ve ever recorded a video on your smartphone, only to find it sideways or upside down, then you know how frustrating it can be to watch it later. If you use Windows, there are a couple of excellent ways to fix this problem.

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Most Mac applications use the operating system’s spell check feature, and share the same personal dictionary. So if you add a custom word to your dictionary in one application, other Mac apps won’t detect it as a typo in the future. But there’s no obvious way to remove a word from the dictionary if you accidentally add one.

about 11 months ago - by  |  1 Reply

Many old PC games seem to work fine on Windows 10, but games using Microsoft’s failed Games for Windows LIVE (GFWL) platform are an exception. They’ll give you an error on Windows 10. You can remove GFWL from many games entirely, though, or just troubleshoot it and make it work properly.

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Windows Defender is a malware and virus scanner built into Windows 10. It does a reasonably good job at those tasks, but you can beef it up a bit by having it scan for Potentially Unwanted Programs (PUPs), too–like browser toolbars, adware, and other crapware.

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Since its launch, the refreshed Start menu has been a divisive part of Windows 10. But for those who still see utility in the live tiles feature, you can create live tiles from some of your favorite games that display information on your achievements and the amount of time you’ve played.

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If your Android phone is feeling a little low on battery, you can find out exactly where your battery power is going. Android’s Battery screen shows you what’s used battery power since your last charge, from apps to system services and hardware devices.

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When a lithium ion battery fails, things can go south very quickly. If you open up your phone to find a battery swollen to twice its size, proper care and handling is critical for both your safety and the safety of others.

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Unlike a faster CPU or graphics card, more memory (aka RAM) won’t always speed up your games. If you already have enough RAM, adding more won’t make a difference. So how much RAM do you need for modern PC gaming, anyway?

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Windows 10 allows you to quickly sign in with a numeric PIN instead of a longer password. if you have a keyboard with a number pad, you can use that number pad to enter the PIN–after you enable Num Lock. Here’s how to enable Num Lock at boot so you don’t have to press the key every time.

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Windows 10 includes an Xbox app and other Xbox-related features. Many of these features are useful even if you’ve never owned an Xbox in your life, and one of these features is even useful for Windows 10 users who never play games.

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Just because the manufacturer decided your gadget needed a blinking LED as bright as a car headlamp doesn’t mean you have to tolerate it. Let’s take a look at how you can those brilliant LEDs so your bedroom doesn’t look like a night club.

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Microsoft allows anyone to download Windows 10 for free and install it without a product key. It’ll keep working for the foreseeable future, with only a few small cosmetic restrictions. And you can even pay to upgrade to a licensed copy of Windows 10 after you install it.

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Microsoft is clashing with the PC gaming community again, with everyone from PC gamers to the CEO of Epic criticizing Microsoft’s Universal Windows Platform. Microsoft doesn’t have a lot of goodwill left in the PC gaming community, thanks especially to the disastrous “Games for Windows LIVE” service from a few years back…and they’re worried history will repeat itself.

about 12 months ago - by  |  7 Replies

Migrating your files, settings, and programs to a new PC can be a little intimidating, especially if you’re not completely organized. These tools and simple tips will help you get started.

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PC gamers have to set a myriad of graphics options to balance performance with graphics quality. If you don’t want to tweak them by hand, both NVIDIA and AMD provide tools that will do it for you.

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When you have more than one or two gadgets, the outlets near that kitchen counter can get very cluttered. If you want to clean things up, you can upgrade your outlets to support not just standard 120-volt power cords but 5v USB charging too.

about 12 months ago - by  |  19 Replies

Applications can use Windows 10’s location services to view your physical location. You’ll see a system tray icon that reads “Your location has recently been accessed” or “Your location is currently in use” when this happens, and it can get a little annoying.

about 12 months ago - by  |  2 Replies

If you have an Android phone or tablet with a small amount of storage, you probably keep uninstalling apps to make room for other ones. But there is a way to expand the storage of an Android device if it has an SD card slot.

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AgileBits is trying to wean people off of this feature, but–unfortunately–it hasn’t provided any equivalent functionality. You can still gain web access to your 1Password vault by changing a few settings, and it will continue to function as long as you don’t migrate to the new database format.

about 12 months ago - by  |  3 Replies

Need a file from an old Windows backup on your Mac? Macs can read Windows drives, but Time Machine won’t help you recover files from a Windows backup. You have to extract files from the backup manually, and it’ll take a bit of work.

about 12 months ago - by  |  2 Replies