JUMPING OUT OF WINDOWS

Several years ago, one of our friends announced he’d had it with Windows. He went out and bought two Macbooks, one for himself, one for his wife. We’re slow but we’re starting to see his point. Feeling the same exasperation, we recently turned to a Macbook Air we’d had in the closet since 2012.The relief was instant. Websites loaded immediately. Joy didn’t have to do four yoga poses before pictures came in. Normally, when our main Windows computer gets screwy, we set it back to its factory defaults. You can do that with the Recovery option in “Settings” or “Control Panel.” Once you do that, it  feels brand new again. Unfortunately, it is brand new again — all the programs […]

Read more

Share

READER TIPS COME WITH A REAL EYE-OPENER

A reader wrote in to give us some of his favorite Windows computing tips. Some we’ve written about before, one was an eye-opener.

Read more

Share

HOLIDAY TECH SUPPORT FOR RELATIVES

If you’re with relatives this holiday season, you may be tempted to upgrade their Windows 7 machines to Windows 10. After all, it’s free for now. Our advice: Don’t do it, or be prepared to roll it back to Windows 7. You have 30 days after installation to go back.

Read more

Share

READER PROBLEM

Another reader recently upgraded to Windows 10 and said her computer isn’t handling her camera card as well as it did when she had Windows 7. Before she upgraded, she’d get a pop-up message every time she stuck in her camera card. This asked if she wanted to import photos or do something else. That was nice, but now she doesn’t get a pop-up. She’d like to go back to the old way but her time travel machine is in the shop. Well, you can still work with photos the old-fashioned way: Click on the picture of a folder in the lower part of the Windows 10 screen to bring up “File Explorer,” or click the start button and then […]

Read more

Share

FADE TO BLACK

In the early days of computing, we had two colors: you could look at green on a black screen or white on a blue or black screen. Those were the days — exciting! And now we can have those days back using the Windows feature “high contrast settings.”

Read more

Share

WINDOWS 10 AND PRIVACY

A reader asked us whether it’s true that the new Windows 10 collects information on your computer usage. Yes it does, but no, we’re not worried about it (anyone watching us needs serious help). If you’re concerned, there’s a free program to shield you.

Read more

Share

PROBLEMS WITH WINDOWS 10

A reader told us he was glad he installed the free Windows 10. Then his digital world crashed. He couldn’t find Picasa, the program he uses for editing his family photos. He asked us to organize a search party. Here’s what the posse found:

Read more

Share

THE WINDOWS 10 CALENDAR

We love Google’s calendar app for Android and iPhone, which keeps us up to date on our phone when we’re away from our computer. Windows 8 and the new Windows 10 also have calendar apps. Set up the calendar app in these systems by clicking the start button, “all apps,” and then “calendar.” When we did this we immediately saw all the dates we’d entered into our Google calendar, so we didn’t have to re-enter anything. Unlike the Google calendar, the Windows calendar puts all your Facebook friends’ birthdays right on the calendar. This can be amusing, if like us, you have Facebook “friends” you hardly know. We even saw birthdays for friends who aren’t on Facebook, whose birthdays were […]

Read more

Share

OUR SAVVY READERS

Readers wrote immediately to tell us we’d missed something in our Windows 10 announcement. We said it’s free but after a year you have to pay for it. Turns out it’s free, period. But if you wait longer than a year to download and install it, it will cost you $120.
By the way, Microsoft has said you will no longer need any anti-virus software because Windows will be fully protected against all viruses, and presumably any other hack attacks. If you believe that, Bob wants you to know that he has a large bridge in New York that he’d like to sell you. (No new operating system ever produced has been invulnerable to virus attacks.)
Nevertheless, Joy, our master tester, likes Windows 10, saying it has the best of Windows 7 and avoids the worst of Windows 8. (Bob is sticking with Windows 7. He grudgingly went on from XP after his old computer got balky.)
If you want Windows 10, beware of scams. There are sites that lure visitors with the promise of a free copy. It’s already free, but be sure you get it from Microsoft.com. The exact address is Microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows10. Click on “download tool now.” If you aren’t sure whether you have a 32-bit system or 64-bit, you can find that by searching on “system info” from the help area of your computer. Just hit the “F1” key to bring up a help menu. If you still can’t decide, it’s almost certain that you have a 64-bit system; we haven’t seen 32-bit systems in many years.

Read more

Share

WINDOWS 10 IS FREE, BUT WITH A CATCH

Windows 10 is free starting today, July 29 but there’s a catch. If you wait more than a year to download and install it, you have to pay for it. They don’t say how much it will be. But if you don’t like it, don’t buy it.

Read more

Share