FEATURED ARTICLES / THE BEST OF HOW-TO GEEK

Nintendo’s New 3DS XL promises 3.5 to 7 hours of battery life, which is quite a large range. These tips will help you get as much battery life as possible out of your 3DS, whether you’re gaming or it’s just sitting in your pocket.

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Most web browsers load Flash and other plug-in content as soon as you open a web page. Enable “click-to-play” plug-ins and your browser will load a placeholder image instead — click it to actually download and view the content.

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Skype doesn’t offer an obvious way to use multiple accounts at the same time. You don’t have to log out and log back in — you can sign into as many Skype accounts as you want via the web, Windows, Mac, or Linux Skype applications.

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Browser plug-ins are on their way out. Microsoft Edge doesn’t support ActiveX plug-ins, although it does have built-in Flash support. Google Chrome has also discontinued support for the NPAPI plug-in format used by Java, Silverlight, Unity, and other plug-ins.

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Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) are veritable Swiss Army Knives when it comes to privacy enhancement, censorship avoidance, anonymous file sharing, and more. But not all VPNs are created equal, and there’s no sense paying for features you don’t need. Read on as we explore the ins and outs of picking a perfect VPN service.

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Whether you’ll be away from home while travelling or just during the workday, you may want to keep an eye on it. Solutions like Nest’s Nest Cam (formerly Dropcam) try to make this easy, but there’s more than one way to do this.

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Why type out text messages at your smartphone when you’re at a laptop or desktop PC with a full-size keyboards? These tricks allow you to send text messages directly from your PC.

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Microsoft’s Windows 10 message hasn’t always been clear. They’ve declared the Windows 10 upgrade will be free for the first year and that going forward they’ll be pushing “Windows 10 as a service.

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Microsoft won’t be offering a free Windows 10 upgrade to any old Windows Vista PCs you might have around. Only Windows 7 and 8.1 PCs get to join the new Windows 10 era for free.

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Windows 10 includes many different backup tools. Microsoft has restored the old Windows Backup tool removed from Windows 8.1, and File History is still around. But those are just the tip of the iceberg.

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VPNs are very useful, whether you’re traveling the world or just using public Wi-Fi at a coffee shop in your hometown. But you don’t necessarily have to pay for a VPN service — you could host your own VPN server at home.

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Photos you take on your Android smartphone don’t have to stay digital. You can get physical copies of those photos printed out quickly and easily — using your own printer, at a local store, or sent to you in the mail.

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Have you ever wanted to try virtual reality out for yourself but can’t afford any of that cool Oculus Rift gear? That’s okay, neither can we, but that doesn’t mean we can’t try to approximate a (cheap) VR experience with Google Cardboard.

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Modern wireless routers often promise “beamforming” technology for improving your Wi-Fi reception and reducing interference. But what exactly is beamforming, how does it work, and is it really helpful?

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If you woke up today to find a new icon planted on the home screen of your iPhone, you might be wondering, what’s this new Apple Music app about, and what can I really do with it?

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Automatically logging into your Windows PC opens a security hole. When you enable automatic logins, your Windows account password is stored on your PC where any program with administrator access can access it.

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When Microsoft began detailing new features of its upcoming Windows 10 operating system, one of those features it talked about is DirectX 12. Gamers will immediately know what this is but they may not perhaps realize just how important an update it will be.

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Digital photos are great, but sometimes you just want a printed photo you can hang somewhere or just hold in your hand. Print photos straight from your iPhone’s camera roll, whether you have your own photo printer or not.

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Two years ago Pebble injected the idea of the smartwatch into the public consciousness; now they’re back with a totally updated model. Does the new Pebble have what it takes to compete in the smartwatch market it helped build?

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Many modern wireless routers are already dual-band, and now router companies are launching tri-band routers. But will they actually speed up your Wi-Fi?

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Don’t like Windows 10? As long as you’ve upgraded within the last month, you can uninstall Windows 10 and downgrade your PC back to its original Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 operating system. You can always upgrade to Windows 10 again later.

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Some flights offer Wi-FI, and some flights don’t. Some airplanes include dedicated power outlets for every seat, while others only offer them in certain seats. But you can check before you get on the plane — or even before you book tickets.

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Windows 10 has built-in real-time antivirus, just as Windows 8 did. It automatically runs in the background, ensuring all Windows users have a baseline level of antivirus protection. Windows 10 won’t complain at you to install an antivirus, as Windows 7 did.

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From PCs to Windows to smartphones, the technology we use every day is surrounded by myths that never seem to go away. These myths are so believable because they all have a grain of truth to them — maybe they even were true in the past.

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You may have misplaced a Wi-Fi password, but your laptop probably remembers it if you’ve connected in the past. If not, you can always grab the password from your router itself or reset the Wi-Fi passphrase and set a new one.

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