Modern office software suites can be unnervingly complicated. Like most of its alternatives, the free and open-source LibreOffice sticks its often-used controls above the content area in various menus. But most of the available tools are actually hidden by default—you’ll have to manually add the ones that aren’t visible out of the box. Here’s how.
Two-factor authentication is important, but a hassle. Instead of typing in a code from your phone, what if you could just insert a USB key to get access to your important accounts?
LibreOffice Writer bundles in a free auto-complete system, similar to the one you’re probably familiar with on your smartphone’s keyboard. But LibreOffice’s is a lot more powerful, and a lot more customizable—you can more or less tell it exactly which words you want to auto-complete, and which ones you don’t.
Like every piece of hardware, hard drives can fail. Mechanical hard drives in particular have moving parts that can (and eventually will) stop working. Even solid-state drives, which have no moving parts, can fail. Every drive has a limited lifespan before it kicks the bucket.
There’s never been an easier time to get started with streaming your PC gameplay online. Whether you want to share your gameplay with some friends or start streaming on Twitch, streaming tools are now built into everything. Here’s how to find the best tool for the job.
Look, autoplaying videos are awful. No one likes them, and I honestly don’t understand why this continues to be a thing that happens on the web. Thankfully, if you’re a Chrome user, you can easily stop this from happening.
VLC’s developers have been working on Chromecast support for some time, and it’s finally available in version 3.0. That means now, you can stream video and audio files from VLC media player on your PC to your Chromecast connected to your TV.
Ever wish you could grab an image of what you’re seeing in that beautiful new video game? Well you can—in fact, some tools even let you pause the game and take a screenshot using a free-moving, in-game camera.
Let’s say you’re trying to be quiet, browsing the internet at home, work, or a public space. You’re secretly filled with dread that anything you click will open a new tab with an autoplay video or blare an obnoxious audio ad. End that fear forever by keeping all your new tabs muted by default.
Templates let you configure all the relevant settings you want pre-applied to documents—font settings, margins and tabs, boilerplate text, and so on. You just open the template and save it under a new name to get a jump start on a new document.
Modern desktop web browsers—Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Apple Safari—all allow you to mute individual browser tabs in just a few clicks. Even Microsoft Edge allows you to mute browser tabs, although Microsoft could make this a lot easier.
Your computer is fast. Unbelievably fast, at least compared to the PC you had ten or twenty years ago. But it could always be a little bit faster. If that statement stirs a bit of tech-flavored longing in your soul, you might want to look into overclocking your processor.
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Most modern computers are capable of running a 64-bit operating system. But just because a computer supports it doesn’t mean that’s what’s running. Here’s how to tell whether you’re running a 32-bit or 64-bit version of Linux.
This trick should work on all Debian-based Linux distros, including Ubuntu. To get started, type ifconfig at the terminal prompt, and then hit Enter. This command lists all network interfaces on the system, so take note of the name of the interface for which you want to change the IP address.
Computer processors have a massive design flaw, and everyone is scrambling to fix it. Only one of the two security holes can be patched, and the patches will make PCs (and Macs) with Intel chips slower.
Do you ever go to Google Maps on your computer, only to see a blank mother-of-pearl grid? It’s really annoying, and it doesn’t happen for any obvious reason. It’s still possible to use Google Maps when it gets like this—you can use search and find specific addresses—but the core functionality is more or less shot. It looks like this:
Virtual Private Networks (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.
If you’re a human person who occasionally engages in commerce, hackers are probably targeting you. This year, resolve to do something about it.
Looking for a bit of PC gaming nostalgia? You could dig those old floppy disks out of your closet…or you could grab the new, improved, open source versions of those games online for free.
It’s finally happening: on February 15, 2018, Google’s Chrome browser will block some ads out-of-the-box, regardless of whether you have a separate ad blocker installed.
Yesterday, fellow How-To Geek writer Eric Ravenscraft recommended a Steam game in our office chat room. It’s all about writing…and also it’s about anime-style schoolgirls and the wooing thereof.
Mozilla was supposed to be different. It brands itself as a non-profit organization dedicated to making the web better, one that cares about user privacy and security. But after this week, I’m starting to wonder if Mozilla really cares about its users the way they claim.
If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is. And Kodi boxes sound way too good to be true, offering unlimited free TV and movies for life after purchasing a single piece of hardware.
Many boxes you plug into your TV, including the Roku, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and even some smart TVs themselves offer DLNA (“Digital Living Network Alliance”) streaming support. They can stream video files and music over the network from your PC—as long as you set up a DLNA server on the PC first.