How To Use A Cortana Voice Command To Shut Down Windows 10

Cortana can do some awesome things; it can give you traffic updates, save reminders, find a restaurant nearby, and more. What it can't do is run simple system operations like shutting down or restarting your computer. It can't even close an app but it can open them which is something you can use to get Cortana to do so much more. If you're looking to turn Windows 10 off with a simple voice command to Cortana, you'd be surprised at how easy it is. All you need to do is create the right shortcut in the right folder. Read More

This Chrome Flag Redirects Cortana Search To Your Default Search Engine In Windows 10

Cortana is one of the highlight features in Windows 10 and Microsoft uses the personal assistant to push Bing on to users. It doesn't look like Cortana will ever have the option to allow users to select which search engine Cortana should use but developers are one step ahead of Microsoft with extensions like bing2google that can redirect the search in your browser. The extension is slow and you can see the redirection happen in the URL bar. Additionally the extension will redirect to Google and if that isn't your preferred search engine, you will have to search for other options. The other solution lies Chrome v50. It has a flag which when enabled will redirect searches from the Windows 10 desktop to your default search engine. Read More

How To Find What Generation Your Intel Processor Is In Windows

If you have a laptop or desktop system running Windows 7 or above, you can check what processor is installed on your system. Simply right-click My Computer and select Properties and you will be given a summary view of the hardware and operating system that is currently set up. The information includes among other things which processor it is you're running but the processor is mentioned by the name it was sold/marketed by. The names indicate the series it was a part of but the only identifiable information is likely going to be the name of the processor. What is going to be harder to figure out is which generation the processor is and the information is important for when you're looking to upgrade a PC or just trying to make sure the one you got has the right hardware. Intel makes it exceptionally easy to figure this out. Here's how. Read More

Add A Virtual Desktop Number Indicator To The System Tray In Windows 10

When you switch between virtual desktops on Windows 10, there is nothing to indicate which desktop you are on if you have added several of them. Perhaps you can tell by the apps you have open on a particular desktop but you are nevertheless relying on your memory to identify a desktop. Virtual Desktops in Windows 10 are a feature that brings the operating system up to par with OS X but the feature itself isn't extraordinary in any way. Like virtual desktops on OS X, it leaves much to be desired for. VirtualDesktopManager is a small Windows app that adds an icon to the system tray to indicate which desktop you are on. The desktops are identified by their number. The app is meant purely for Windows 10 users and supports up to nine desktops. Read More

How To Get A Direct Link To A File In OneDrive On Windows 10

OneDrive is installed as a default app in Windows 10 and it pops up repeatedly asking you to sign in and start using it. Getting the app to stop nagging you is a task in itself but OneDrive isn't inherently useless. It is perhaps the fact that it is forced on to users that takes away from its appeal but it is otherwise as useful as Dropbox. If you have never dug deep into what OneDrive can do and choose simply to dismiss it because it isn't Dropbox or Google Drive, or your preferred cloud storage app you are missing out. OneDrive, in addition to being able to sync your files across multiple Windows desktops allows you to share them easily from a desktop. There are no hoops for you to jump through and any time you want to share a file from your drive, you can get a direct link for it from the right-click context menu. Here's how. Read More

How To Jump To A Virtual Desktop In Windows 10 Using Keyboard Shortcuts

Virtual desktops are one of the more awesome features added in Windows 10 but while the addition of the feature is great, it isn't extraordinary in itself. If you compare it to virtual desktops on other operating systems i.e. Linux and OS X, it is more or less at par. The virtual desktops are numbered and cannot be renamed and because the feature is still in its infancy, it leaves much to be desired in terms of app and window management. The virtual desktops can be navigated i.e. created, closed, and switched to, with keyboard shortcuts. You can cycle through them or use swipe gestures to switch to the next or previous one. You can also use keyboard shortcuts to jump directly a desktop i.e. skip cycling through desktops 2 and 3, and jump straight to desktop 4 from desktop 1 provided you don't mind jumping to the multitask view. Read More

How To Sign Out Of The Messaging App In Windows 10

If you connect your Microsoft account to Windows 10, it will automatically assume you want to enable every single app and feature that requires an account be connected. There are a whole host of things you cannot do unless you connect the account but it's the features that self-activate that are the bigger problem. In Windows 10, like in Windows 8, there is an app called 'Messaging' which automatically signs in if you use your Microsoft account on the system. This app is practically barren with little to no settings and no way to turn it Off and yet, it populates with your Skype conversations. The lack of settings for the app include a 'Sign Out' option making it seem as though the only way to be rid of this app is to disconnect your Microsoft account from Windows 10 but fortunately, that isn't the case. You can sign out of the Messaging app and here's how. Read More

Test Windows 10 Compatibility On A System With A Bootable Version

Most Windows users know about the Get Windows 10 app that installs on both Windows 7 and 8.1 as an update. Initially, it was meant to help you reserve a copy of Windows 10 and then later it would help you upgrade. The app did one other thing; it allowed you to check your system for compatibility with Windows 10. The apps on your system and the hardware were all checked to see if they would run smoothly on Windows 10. Systems that were given the all-clear by the app still experienced trouble once they were upgraded to Windows 10. If you're still on the fence about the upgrade, use a portable version of Windows 10 to see how well the system handles it. Here's how. Read More

A Complete List Of All Updates You Should Uninstall To Block Windows 10

Windows 10 has had an impressive adoption rate. The OS had a lot of promise when it was still in the preview stage and even though it started out infested with bugs, it has since improved a lot and Microsoft really wants you to check it out. It's been aggressively pushing the new operating system through various updates and users who are weary of its attempts to get them to upgrade repeatedly have to block updates that try to download Windows 10 to their systems. Some updates don't install or download files to install Windows 10 and instead install components to make the upgrade smoother. If you're looking to block every single Windows 10 update completely, here is an exhaustive list of the updates you need to block on Windows 8.1 and Windows 7. Read More

Find Which Slide In Your PowerPoint Presentation Is The Largest In Size

PowerPoint lets you add different types of media files to a presentation. Anything from images, videos, and audio files can be added to a slide. The support for so many different types of media no doubt make it exceptionally easier to create engaging presentations but at the same time, with each image, graph, document, video, and audio file that you add, the presentation itself becomes bigger and bigger in size. If the size of a presentation file ever becomes a problem, either when emailing it, or when sharing it via a cloud file sharing service, you will either have to find an alternative method to send the file or you will have to cut it down to size. Here's how you can check which slide in a presentation is the largest in size and cut back where it really matters. Read More

How To Download A File With A PowerShell Command In Windows 10

Windows PowerShell comes bundled with Windows 10. You can even replace the Command prompt on the Power User menu with PowerShell. Like Command Prompt, PowerShell lets you perform a myriad of configuration actions on your desktop such as uninstalling default apps. You can also use to for something far more basic such as downloading a file. With a simple command, you can not only download a publicly available file but you can also download one that requires authentication before it can be downloaded such e.g. a file in your Dropbox folder. We've detailed the process here. Read More

Switch Audio Tracks & Load External Subtitles In Movies & TV App On Windows 10

One of the biggest shortcomings of the Windows Media Player app is that it cannot load external subtitles. It's a glaring feature omission that has not been corrected to date. Unless you have a movie with encoded subtitles, you will have to use other media players such as VLC player to load subtitles. Although Microsoft hasn't fixed this, it has introduced a new app in Windows 10 to play media called Movies & TV that supports loading external subtitles. Here's how you can load an external subtitles file in the Movies & TV app on Windows 10, and how you can switch audio tracks. Read More

How To Disable The Notifications Panel In Windows 10

Notifications have long been a part of Windows but in Windows 10, Microsoft introduced the Notification panel, i.e. the Action Center where all the notifications sent to you by the system or an app would appear. You can review notifications that you dismissed and interact with them to open a file, event, or email, etc. The panel also includes some quick access toggles for opening the Settings app, turning on Quiet hours, turning the WiFi On/Off, and more. The point is, it's not a useless UI element put there for the sake of making the OS appear more intelligent. It has actual use but if you're trying to get Windows 10 to look, and/or behave, more like Windows 7 then you might be interested in turning the Notification Center panel Off. Here's how. Read More

Open Your Optical Disk Drive With A Keyboard Shortcut [Windows]

Optical disk drives are still an integral part of almost all Windows machines. Even though devices like the Surface tablet prove you don't need the drive to have a perfectly usable system, they are no where near going extinct. The optical drive isn't going to go the way of the floppy drive for another few years. If you ever compare an ordinary Windows machine from a major manufacturer like hp or Dell, to a MacBook, you will notice that among the many design variations, the drive on a MacBook doesn't need to be opened or closed. The same can't be said for optical drives on both laptops and desktop tower setups. You either have to open it from My Computer or you have to press the physical button on the drive itself. If you're looking for a much easier way to do this, give Door Control a try. It's a free Windows app that will open/eject the optical drive with just a keyboard shortcut. It also claims to be able to close the drive but that will depend on the actual hardware on your system. Read More

How To Get A Dark Start Menu & Taskbar With Colored Title Bars In Windows 10

Windows 10 takes it upon itself to ensure you have a nice color scheme on your system. You can choose the color of the title bars, taskbar, and Start Menu but Windows will tweak it to make it look better. The Taskbar and the Start Menu are always a slightly different shade of the color of the title bars. You can disable the color on the Taskbar and the Start Menu altogether but that will also disable the color on the title bar for all windows. It's an all or nothing deal but if you're willing to tweak something in the Windows registry, you can keep the color on the title bars but turn the color for the Start Menu, Taskbar, and Action Center off. Here's how. Read More

How To Set A Different Wallpaper For Multiple Monitors In Windows 10

Windows 10 has greatly restricted how much users can personalize the appearance of the OS. Themes aren't what they used to be and it was only after users complained did Microsoft bring back the colored title bars. Many customization options that were accessible from the Control Panel have been hidden and setting a desktop background is now something you can only do from the new Settings app. This has a major drawback; the Settings app doesn't let you set a different wallpaper for multiple monitors and there is no visible way to do it from the Control Panel. Fortunately, there's a very easy work around to it. Read More

Retroactively Resize Two Windows Snapped Side By Side In Windows 10

The window snapping feature in Windows 10 has greatly been improved upon since Windows 7. Even back then, it was pretty awesome but with Windows 10 and the lessons Microsoft learned from Windows 8, the feature has been made all the better. Among the many other things that you can do when snapping windows, resizing two at the same time is a very useful new addition made in Windows 10. Here's how it works. Read More

Use iTunes Home Sharing To Stream Music From The Desktop To Your iPhone

If you own an iPhone model with low storage, it's likely you cut corners to manage your space better. You likely have to keep space free for the apps you need and thus have to keep fewer photos and music files on the device. One way to conserve space on a device is to use apps like Spotify to fuel your music needs but if you're mostly working next to or near a desktop, you can use Home Sharing to get music from your PC on your iPhone without needing any extra apps. Here's how. Read More

How To Turn Off Snap Suggestions In Windows 10

Snapping is an awesome Windows feature and thankfully, it has stood the test of time and Microsoft's attempts at innovating and reinventing their OS. In Windows 10, the snapping feature comes with several new improvements one of which is that it now suggests what other windows to snap when you snap the current window. The suggestions will show you the last three windows you used of all the ones that are open. It does confuse you at first since you don't immediately know how to return to the desktop but if it continues to bother you, you can turn the suggestions feature Off. Here's how. Read More

Get An iPad Like App Launcher On Windows

Microsoft experimented with a full screen app launcher back in Windows 8 that it called the Start Screen. The launcher didn't fare well with users and Microsoft eventually had to get rid of it. If the idea of a full screen app launcher appealed to you, PaperPlane is a free app launcher for Windows that mimics the launcher on the iPad. The great thing about the app is how easy it is to launch it. It doesn't interfere with any normal desktop functions and you can add files, folders, apps, and web links to it. Read More