7 Quick Tips & Hacks to Optimize Your Windows 10 Experience

At Cleburne PC Repair we understand the frustration of what seems like a forced Windows 10 upgrade on most users.  We can help you go back to Windows 7 and stay on Windows 7 if you prefer.  If you want to give Windows 10 a try here are some tips to help optimize your Windows 10 Experience.   For computer repair in Cleburne Texas give us a call at (254) 479-8006.

Windows 10 is more than an upgrade from Windows 8, it’s an evolution. We’ve covered many of the big changes, including Cortana integration, the resurrected Start Menu, or new Gaming features. Lots of minor things changed, too and knowing them could significantly enhance your Windows 10 experience.

We’ve compiled the most useful small tips & hacks for Windows 10. Let’s see whether we can teach you a new trick.
Learn Essential Keyboard Shortcuts

Keyboard shortcuts are the best way to save lots of time inside Windows. Often, they’re much easier to remember, than the path to a specific feature.
Windows key + A to Launch the Action Center

This is a novel shortcut. It’s essential because not only does the Action Center hold notifications you might have missed, you’ll also find a number of handy shortcuts at its bottom. They provide a quick way to toggle tablet and airplane mode or manage display settings. The exact selection of tiles will depend on your device.

Windows Key + I to Launch Settings App

You will need this shortcut a lot! The Settings app increasingly replaces the Control Panel and it’s much more accessible, particularly if you’re using the touch interface.

Sadly, some advanced features are missing. However, you can still access what remains of the Control Panel, either by searching in the Settings app or by clicking the Windows key and typing away.
Windows Key + X to Launch Power User Menu

This shortcut has been around for a while. In Windows 7, it opens the Windows Mobility Center. Since Windows 8, it launches the power user menu, which contains access to all the advanced Windows features you’ll ever need, including the Mobility Center, Computer Management, elevated Command Prompt, Control Panel, and shut down options. It’s not new, but with so many things changing, it’s good to know how to access the basics.

Extend Battery Life with Battery Saver

The Settings app contains a few new features, including Battery Saver. While it only limits background activity, which may not have a lot of potential to save battery life, it does have a small effect.

Press Windows + I to launch the Settings app, go to System > Battery saver > Battery saver settings, check the box to enable the feature, and pick a percentage at which you want it to kick in.

Under System > Battery saver > Battery usage you can check how much energy is wasted on background processes. If this number is large, you might want to examine what’s starting up with Windows and maybe enable Battery Saver at a higher percentage.
Speed Up Application Launch at Boot

For Windows 8, Microsoft commissioned a dedicated team to reengineer the Windows boot experience. One of their strategies to make the boot time appear faster was to delay the launch of applications. This start-up delay persists in Windows 10. If you run Windows 10 on a high end machine and have experienced super fast boot times, but are annoyed by apps not being available immediately, you might benefit from disabling this startup delay.

Press Windows + R to launch the Run menu. Type regedit, hit Enter or click OK to launch the Windows Registry, then open the following Registry key:


If you can’t find the Serialize key, right click Explorer, select New > Key, and name it Serialize. Under this key, create a new DWORD value called StartupDelayInMSec and set it to 0.

In case you notice longer boot times after adding this key, you could increase the delay to 1 or 2 milliseconds or delete the Serialize key to restore default settings.
Disable Taskbar Search

The new search bar, which ties in Cortana, takes up a lot of space in the Windows Taskbar. If you don’t use the Taskbar search that often and would rather preserve that space for something else, here is an easy way to change it.

Right-click the Taskbar, select Search, and either select Show search icon, which will replace the bar with a much smaller magnifier icon, or Disabled, which will remove it from the Taskbar entirely. Note that in both cases, the search bar still pops up when you open the Start Menu, for example by pressing the Windows key.

Enable New Command Line Features

Windows 10 adds some overdue improvements to the command prompt. For example, you’ll finally be able to resize the window horizontally and enjoy word wrap. Moreover, the command prompt will support keyboard shortcuts for copying, cutting, pasting, and selecting text. However, these features are considered experimental and are not enabled by default.

read the full article here: http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/7-quick-tips-hacks-optimize-windows-10-experience/


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Seven easy ways to speed up a slow laptop

Dealing with a slow laptop is frustrating but there’s no need to upgrade to a new model. Follow these simple tips to clean up your laptop and give it a major speed boost. – See more at: http://www.saga.co.uk/magazine/technology/computing/how-to-guides/7-ways-to-speed-up-a-slow-laptop#sthash.DrCz8EU9.dpuf

As your laptop ages, it can get clogged with unwanted programs and files, reducing its performance to a crawl.

Rather than splash out for a brand new laptop, our easy tips will speed up your laptop and give it a new lease of life.
1. Check for viruses

Serious laptop slow-downs can be caused by virus infection or malware.

Make sure real-time protection is switched on in Windows’ built-in anti-virus program Windows Defender.

Run a full scan of your laptop to detect and remove any malware.
– See more at: http://www.saga.co.uk/magazine/technology/computing/how-to-guides/7-ways-to-speed-up-a-slow-laptop#sthash.DrCz8EU9.dpuf

2. Delete unused programs

Over time, your laptop may get bogged down by programs you no longer use.

Removing unwanted software will help speed up your laptop. Click ‘Start’ > ‘Control Panel’ > ‘Uninstall a program’.

From the list of programs that appears, click the program you want to remove and then click ‘Uninstall’.

Windows 10 users can uninstall programs from the Start menu by right-clicking the program listed under ‘All apps’ and selecting ‘Uninstall’.

Guide to using Windows 10.
3. Remove temporary files

Temporary files created through everyday computing tasks can clog up your laptop’s hard drive.

Use Windows’ built-in Disk Cleanup tool to delete these, freeing up hard disk space and speeding up your laptop.

Click in the Taskbar search box, type disk cleanup and select it from the results. Select the type of files you want to delete and then click ‘OK’ and then click ‘Delete files’.

To free up even more space, click ‘Clean up system files’ too.

Three free anti-virus software.
4. Add more hard drive storage

Your laptop’s hard drive needs enough free space to work effectively. Once it’s more than 85% full, it will start to perform slowly.

A quick and easy solution is to move some of your files onto an external hard drive. Large files, such as photos, music and video clips, are good files to offload.

5. Stop programs starting automatically

If your laptop takes ages to start up, there may be too many programs trying to launch when you switch it on.

You can stop programs that you don’t need from loading automatically in Windows 10 by right-clicking the Taskbar and selecting ‘Task Manager’. Click ‘More details’ and then select the ‘Startup’ tab.

Here you’ll see a list of programs that load automatically when your laptop boots up, along with the impact this has. Right-click a program and select ‘Disable’ to stop it loading.

– See more at: http://www.saga.co.uk/magazine/technology/computing/how-to-guides/7-ways-to-speed-up-a-slow-laptop#

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‘Free’ Windows 10 Reveals Its Expensive Secret

Windows 10 is free.

This is a statement which makes many people uneasy. After all Windows didn’t used to be free and nothing in life is ever really free, right? So when will the real cost of Windows 10 be revealed? Well now we know and it hits both customers and Microsoft in very different ways…

Let’s break them down:

1. Windows 10 Cost to Microsoft: $1.5 Billion

If you ever doubted Microsoft was taking a huge hit to give users Windows 10 for free, doubt no longer. This month the company announced its Q3 results and revealed this carved a massive $1.5 billion hole in its revenues.

2. Windows 10 Cost to Users: Choice

The most obvious point to address is Windows 10 will not always be free.

Microsoft has long stated Windows 7 and Windows 8 users will enjoy a free upgrade window during Windows 10’s first year of release (July 29, 2015 to July 29, 2016). It has been implied that after this date the standard retail costs will apply ($119 for Windows 10 Home, $199 for Windows 10 Pro).

And yet this remains a grey area as Microsoft refuses to explicitly state this is what will happen.

Why? Because it gives Microsoft the option to use the free period to drive upgrades then extend it – possibly forever – ‘at the last minute’. So that’s not the total solution to getting money back. Neither is Windows 10 Enterprise as it has never been free and therefore isn’t part of lost costs.

Instead where Microsoft will recover its lost Windows 10 income is through a much less popular route: Control.

Using default settings (the norm for most mainstream customers) gives Windows 10 an incredible amount of user data (anonymised though invaluable) and absolute control over updates and the installation of new features and services. What’s more, by being ‘free’, Microsoft clearly feels more entitled to use Windows 10 to push users towards its own products.

This was initially subtle. Several Windows 10 updates in August casually switched user preferences (such as default browser) back to Microsoft solutions, then stepped things up by automatically deleting some third party apps and tools in November. Since then the company has become more overt. This week it declared all attempts to use rival search engines in the Windows 10 search bar would be blocked and all results must load in Edge, no matter the user’s default browser.

Microsoft’s logic? Avoiding “a compromised experience that is less reliable and predictable” – but for whom?

Needless to say, such positions have led many to declaring they will never upgrade to Windows 10. But unless they plan on switching to Mac OS X (an even more controlled environment) or a distribution of Linux, that won’t be an option forever.

For the first time in the history of Windows, Microsoft has declared it was making versions of Windows incompatible with new hardware. More specifically Windows 7 and Windows 8 will now not support the latest Intel, AMD and Qualcomm chipsets. Some compromises followed but this has still effectively marooned 60% of the world’s operating systems to ageing hardware.

Not everything is sneaky tricks.

Windows 10 has an increasingly credible app store for revenue and apps work across PCs, tablets and mobile (even if this impressive technical achievement is hit by the failure of Windows Phone/Mobile). Similarly Microsoft can justifiably point to its rivals employing similar tactics. Apple has long exerted extreme control over its platforms and Google trades users’ their anonymised data in exchange for free products and looking at ads.

And these points are fair. Rivals have long employed similar tactics to those Microsoft is being now criticised for in Windows 10. But, then again, that’s also the point: Microsoft was different from the controlling Apple and the data mining Google. Now? Not so much.

And that is where the true cost of ‘free’ Windows 10 really comes in.

Read the Full Story: http://www.forbes.com/sites/gordonkelly/2016/04/29/free-windows-10-cost-expensive-secret/#3a4b6671403f

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