Category: Windows 8-8.1

Mac vs. Windows incompatibility achieves irrelevance

The days when business users needed to worry a Mac might prove incompatible with colleague’s Windows systems are over. Erik Eckel explains.

Pumping diesel fuel into a vehicle requiring unleaded gasoline makes what most would describe as a first-class mess. Fortunately, diesel fuel dispenser nozzles are sized to help prevent accidental insertion within an unleaded fuel tank. Surprisingly, some businesses still believe Macs are as incompatible with Windows systems as diesel fuel is with unleaded.

The popularity of cloud-based computing, in which business professionals largely only need internet access to a web-based application using the Safari, Firefox, or Chrome Web browsers, combined with Microsoft’s continued Office productivity suite support for OS X and even iOS, essentially eliminates incompatibilities. In cases where organizations prove dependent upon a Windows-based application — a scenario increasingly unlikely, thanks to many such application providers offering platform-independent cloud-based computing options — Mac users can always load VMware Fusion (or Parallels Desktop for Mac) and run Windows within OS X.

The majority of computer users have largely made Microsoft’s Office productivity tools the de facto standard. Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint essentially rule the document, spreadsheet, and presentation worlds. Now that Microsoft supports OS X (and iOS) with its Office 365 licensing subscriptions, and the Windows and Mac versions encounter little trouble when sharing files between platforms, Mac users needn’t worry that Windows colleagues will send files they can’t read, import, edit, change, and otherwise send back. Office productivity compatibilities have essentially been eliminated.

Even if a Windows user seeking to migrate to using a Mac is dependent upon Microsoft Access, Project, or Publisher, those applications can be obtained from Microsoft and installed and run within a virtual machine. In the past, VMs were a chore to set up and administer. However, virtualization software advancements make creating new VMs a breeze — plus faster Macs (solid state disks, in particular) and improved efficiencies within OS X dramatically improve performance.

Popular cloud-based storage services, including Box and DropBox, now support the Mac platform, as do automated backup offerings from Carbonite and Mozy. Even Microsoft’s OneDrive cloud-managed file storage solution now supports Macs and iOS devices.

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Top 10 Great Screen Savers For Windows

A good and safe screensaver can be hard to find. They have become popular programs for viruses and malware to piggyback on, and many may require or attempt to force the installation of unwanted toolbars and software. These days, many people do not even use screen savers for their originally intended purpose, often simply setting their computer to shut off the monitor after idling for too long. But, there are several really fascinating and useful screensavers out there for those who enjoy them, and we have tracked down a sampling of some really fun and safe to use screensavers for your perusal and enjoyment. Read on to see our findings:

NOTE:These screensavers work both in Windows 7 and Windows 8.1, with one exception:Security Essentials Screensaver works only in Windows 7, if you have Microsoft Security Essentials installed.

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How To Remove Internet Explorer From Windows

With each new version of Internet Explorer and each new version of Windows, the procedure for removing this browser from the operating system has changed. For example, when Internet Explorer 9 was launched, it was distributed as an update for Windows and you could remove it from the list of installed updates. Today, we have Internet Explorer 11 and removing it involves a very different process. That’s why, in this guide, we will share how to remove Internet Explorer, from both Windows 7 and Windows 8.1.

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How To Create A Bootable Windows Installation DVD Or USB Drive

Do you need to quickly create a bootable USB memory stick or a bootable DVD with the Windows installation on it? Do you want to use a tool that’s also compatible with Windows 10 and creates bootable drives with the Windows 10 setup files? Luckily, Microsoft offers a free tool named Windows USB/DVD Download Tool and, even though it was last updated in 2009, it also works great with the most recent releases of Windows. Here’s how it works:

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How To Install Windows 10 Technical Preview

While Microsoft is working on the next version of Windows, you can get your hands on the latest technical preview that’s available to anyone. You can sign up for this program, download the latest test version and install it on your computer or in a virtual machine. Here’s how to get Windows 10 and how to install it on your computer:

Signing up for the Windows Insider program

In order to download Windows 10 Technical Preview, you must sign up for the Windows Insider program. You need to have a Microsoft account for doing this.

Go to the Windows Insider website and click or tap the Get Started button. Sign in with your Microsoft account.

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How To Open The Sound Scheme Customization Window

Windows has a set of sounds applied to events and programs, such as “Close Program”, “Default Beep”, “Maximize”, “Minimize”, etc. The collection of all these sounds is called a sound scheme and is associated with a Windows theme. For example, the themes that come bundled with Windows are using the Windows Default sound scheme. When you change your Windows theme, the sound scheme is also changed according to the new theme’s settings. If you are not happy with a certain sound scheme, you can easily customize it so that it uses the sounds you want. You can even create your own sound schemes. Let’s see how it all works.

NOTE: This guide applies to both Windows 7 and Windows 8.1.

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Security For Everyone – Reviewing McAfee Total Security 2015

The last time we tested McAfee’s security products we were quite disappointed. However, a new version is now available, so things might have changed in the meantime. We thoroughly tested McAfee Total Security 2015 for a week and we’re ready to share our conclusions with you. Read this review to learn about “the good, the bad & the ugly” of using McAfee security products on your Windows computer.

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How To Turn Your Windows 8.1 Device Into A WiFi Access Point

Previous editions of Windows allowed users to create ad hoc wireless connections between computers. You could use those connections to create a wireless network between multiple computers or to share the Internet connection that was available on one of them. This can no longer be done in Windows 8.1, at least not using a visual interface and the mouse. However, with the help of the Command Prompt and a few commands, you too can turn your Windows 8.1 laptop or hybrid device into a WiFi access point. Here’s how:

NOTE: Lots of readers have asked us for a way to automate the steps described in this tutorial. That is why we have updated the tutorial and created a small program, which aims to automate the steps involved in this process, as much as possible. You can find more information and the download link at the end of the article. However, we do recommend that you read the whole article before using our program, so that you understand how to use it.

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Enable Thumbnails For Video, Audio & Image Files In Windows/File Explorer

Windows Explorer or File Explorer may show thumbnail previews for all kinds of files, like “.avi” movie files but they may not show thumbnail previews for “.flv” (Flash Video) or “.mkv” (Matroska Video) files. Luckily, with the help of an application named Media Preview you can enable thumbnail previews for multiple file extensions. It works for video, audio and image formats and you can set how each thumbnail preview looks like. Here’s how it works:

Step 1: Download & Install Media Preview

First, you need to download and install the Media Preview application. You can find the download link here: Media Preview, media file thumbnailing for Windows.

Run the setup file that you have downloaded and, during the installation process, make sure that you select all shell extensions, so that you can set the thumbnails for all types of supported files.

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How To Change The Default Playback & Recording Audio Device

One of the many creative options built into Windows is the ability to record and play back multimedia files. Windows even makes it simple by selecting a default device for audio recording and playback, but what if you’d prefer that another device be used? Let’s take a look at how to change the default and how to troubleshoot certain problems.

Working With Audio Devices In Windows

Before we make any changes, it’s important to know what we’re dealing with. We record audio using microphones, for example, and play them back through speakers. We can also record sounds from devices inside the computer, like the optical drive, and playback through headphones. Many people have more than one device attached (like the microphone included in a web cam plus a standalone microphone plus a microphone built into a headset) and it’s important to pick a default so the sound is recorded and played back with the highest fidelity. You don’t want your voice to sound like you’re in an empty hallway because your default is the webcam microphone three feet away from you instead of the microphone in your headset or on your desk.

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OMUG 2017