When presenting in front of an audience, sometimes it’s necessary to pause your PowerPoint slideshow for a few minutes to highlight a point, answer audience questions, or to simply take a break. Instead of leaving the presentation or covering the projector lens with a piece of paper, you can press “B” to show a black screen or “W” to show a white screen.
Sometimes you need to find out your IP address for networking, troubleshooting, gaming, or tech support purposes. There are two IP addresses you may need to consider — your “external” IP address (the IP address the rest of the world sees to locate your computer or network) and your “internal” IP address (which identifies your particular computer in a shared network). Finding your external IP address is easy. If you are connected to the web, just launch your browser and type: “whatismyip”, and your browser should redirect you to the website whatismyip.com which will provide you this information for free. To find out your internal IP address, just go to the Windows command prompt, or go to the Windows Start Menu and click on Run, then type “cmd”. Next, simply type “ipconfig” in the command prompt and then look for the string of numbers right next to “IP Address.”
Have you ever struggled with fitting the contents of your Excel spreadsheet on one page? There are several ways to get around this, one of which is to use the Print Preview option in Excel. While in Print Preview mode, click the Margins button or tick the Show Margins checkbox to display the margins in Excel. You can now drag the right, left, top, and bottom margins just the way you want to be able fit the data onto the page.
Want to change the default download location for Mozilla Firefox? Perhaps you want to have it default to your desktop, or a special folder on your hard drive? To do so, go to the Options menu in Firefox, then under the General tab look for the Downloads section. Browse to a location in the “Save files to” option screen, then click on OK and you should be good to go. Alternatively, you can have Firefox prompt you for a location for every download by choosing the option “Always ask me where to save files” instead.
On some computers with really large drives, the Recycle Bin’s default size setting (10% of your hard drive space) can be too much and may be an inefficient use of space. Over time, you may need to recover this extra space, and it’s easy to do so. Just right-click on the Recycle Bin and move the slider to the left to reduce its allocated disk space. Click on OK, and you might be surprised at just how much space you were able to recover.
Many users download Adobe Acrobat Reader to open PDF Documents, but it can be slow to start up and load a file. However, you can use Chrome as your default PDF viewer. It’s really fast and unlike other free PDF viewers it’s a breeze to set up and use. Simply open Google Chrome and type chrome://plugins in the address field. Make sure “Chrome PDF Viewer” is enabled in the list of plugins. Next, right-click on any PDF file and choose “Open With” and navigate to the “Choose Program” link. Select Google Chrome in the list of applications provided, making sure to check the “Always use the selected program to open this kind of file” checkbox. Finally, click on Open. The next time you open a PDF document it will open in Google Chrome.
When Windows 7 was released, it introduced a new feature called Snap — which allows users to easily resize windows when they are dragged to the edges of the screen. Depending on where the window is dragged, it expands vertically, takes up the entire screen, or arranges itself side-by-side with another open window. If you find this feature more annoying than helpful, you can disable it in the “Ease of Access Center” in the Windows Control Panel. Click on the “Change how your mouse works” link, scroll down to the “Make it easier to manage windows” section, then check the box labeled “Prevent windows from being automatically arranged when moved to the edge of the screen.”
Google’s Chrome browser has special commands that can show you basic browser settings and info from within the browser’s main window. This can be helpful since it presents browser information in one neat page that can easily be searched. For example, to view bookmarks, type “chrome://bookmarks” in the search or URL box. To view downloads, type “chrome://downloads”, and to view your history, type “chrome://history”.
There are times when you might want to open multiple instances of the same software program quickly, such as when you need to work on multiple documents in Word or Excel, or when you want to launch multiple windows of your browser. In Windows 7, you can do this easily. Just press and hold down the SHIFT key while left-clicking on the first instance of the program in the Windows taskbar, and a new instance of the same program is opened.
Instead of copying files to multiple locations in your hard drive to make sure you can find it easily, consider using shortcuts instead. Shortcuts are simply links to the original file, folder, or programs from which it was created. You can distinguish a shortcut by the arrow in the lower-left corner of the icon. To create a shortcut, right-click the file and then click Create Shortcut . Create as many as you want, and drag them to the appropriate locations within your hard drive.