Search This Blog- Enter the tip # or a keyword(s)

Sunday, April 3, 2016

1699. Facebook Pop up

Recently I've noticed that when I visit a lot of websites I see the little pop up on the side of the screen with an image for Facebook and Twitter and other sharing services. I can't seem to get rid of it. Is there something I can do it's really annoying?

For what I can tell, this doesn’t sound like a feature that you can turn on or off. I suspect that the website that you’re visiting is displaying the pop-up on purpose.

Many sites, including provide information completely free. The way that they pay their costs  is typically via advertising. Advertising depends on site popularity, and popularity depends on getting more and more people to visit the site.

They want you to share what you find interesting and helpful with other people so more people visit the site, plain and simple.

With the social media so popular this is a common way to share the information.  Thus the links are put on the web sites. They are put there by the websites you’re visiting.

Pop-UP blockers are the only way.  But that may limit things you want to see.  

Ultimately information is all over the Internet so if a site is annoying let them know and go somewhere else.

There are links on our website for you to read more on your options.  And we don't do pop-ups.

Read more:

How do I block any trace of Facebook from my computer? Blocking Facebook from your computer is ultimately not possible. There are a few steps you can take to manage how it affects your life, including not letting it bug you.

How do I get rid of these new banner ads and tabs that pop up on websites? Pop-up blockers are designed to catch new pages from popping up off a website, but sometimes, they might not be able to grab ad features that are a part of the website itself.

How do I get rid of ‘Like’, ‘Send’, ‘Share,’ and so on, that slow down so many web pages? It’s the website that you’re visiting that’s putting those social icons there, and there’s really no way for you to turn them off.

1698. Dark Web

I keep hearing about the dark or deep web and I wonder what this is? I don't know how to get there. Is this something I 
should know about or even be worried about?

The Dark Web is a term that refers specifically to a collection of websites that are publicly visible, but hide the IP addresses of the servers that run them. Thus they can be visited by any web user, but it is very difficult to work out who is behind the sites. And you cannot find these sites using search engines.

Almost all sites on the so-called Dark Web hide their identity using the Tor encryption tool. You may know Tor for its end-user-hiding properties. You can use Tor to hide your identity, and spoof your location. When a website is run through Tor it has much the same effect.

How to access the Dark Web?
Technically, this is not a difficult process. You simply need to install and use Tor. Go to and download the Tor Browser Bundle, which contains all the required tools. 

Depending on what you intend to do on the Dark Web, some users recommend placing tape over your laptop's webcam to prevent prying eyes watching you. A tinfoil hat is also an option.
The difficult thing is knowing where to look. There, reader, we leave you to your own devices and wish you good luck and safe surfing. And a warning before you go any further. Once you get into the Dark Web, you *will* be able to access those sites to which the tabloids refer. This means that you could be a click away from sites selling drugs and guns, and - frankly - even worse things.

1700. Turn off Win 10 update

I really like Windows 10 but I have a lot of friends who aren't ready to upgrade yet. They get a pop up that appears not only every day but often every hour. Is there some way to get rid of that incessant pop up and just go on about their lives?

Not every computer will see this pop-up.  But for those of you that do get the message and you do not want to see the pop-up here is how you disable it.

One way is to uninstall the update that was downloaded for Windows 10. There is a link on our website to do this.

  1. Open up Windows Update and click on View update history.
  2. Click on Installed Updates.
  3. In the search box in the upper right corner type in kb3035583. If the update is on your system it will show up in the results.
  4. Click on the KB3035583 entry in the search results and you will be asked if you are sure you want to uninstall it. Click Yes to remove it.

The other way is to use the registry editor and make some easy changes.  We have the details to do this on our website as well.  

Both of these solutions may be more than what you may want to tackle but you could ask a more technical friend to help you.

It looks like Microsoft's offer to upgrade to Windows 10 will end July 29, 2016.  So think about doing this as well.  Remember to backup your system before doing the update. 

Modify your registry: Do the following:

  1. Navigate to: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE \SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Gwx
  2. Create a new REG_DWORD registry value called: DisableGwx
  3. Give it a value of: 1

1695. Windows 10 Peer to Peer Updates

I was horrified to read somewhere that Windows 10 is using my bandwidth the send updates to other users. In a like a peer to peer kind of network thing. I have a limited download speed and I have a limited throughput. Can this be true?

If you've upgraded to Windows 10 then Microsoft could be using your PC - and your internet connection - to silently send Windows updates to others. There is a section in security that says to Choose how updates are delivered. 

You want to make sure you change this section to only send updates to PC's on my local Network. The default option will allow you to share an update you downloaded to keep your version of Windows up to date and now it will send this update to other computers on the internet. 

This is using your bandwidth to keep strangers up to date. The default in our minds should be to only update your local network, not others outside your network.

1696. Browser Add-Ins Breaking the Browser

This problem has occurred to me and lots of other people as well because I hear about it all the time. It seems like web browsers work one day and then not the next. Somesites work. Other sites don't. What's going on here?

Ken I agree that this has become a very annoying situation. The first thing I would try is when you have a problem with a website I always try to use a different browser.  If your default is Internet Explorer and the site just doesn't seem to work copy the URL and open Chrome or Firefox and paste the URL.  Do the same if you have a Mac, Try Chrome instead of Safari.

If that doesn'y solve the problem, it is most likely the browser extension.  The browser extensions are additions to browsers to enhance the browser.  Sometimes these extensions or Add-On's just don't work correctly.

You can disable or remove the extension by going into the settings of your browser.    This is different for every browser so do a search on your favorite search engine for "How to disable extensions for Internet Explorer, or Safari".  Follow the instruction to disable extensions.  

This may fix the problems and in many cases it will speed up your browser activity.

Good luck.

1697. Quickies

Doug had this great idea just to do quick tips. Tom wants to call them. Quickies. I think it's more like. Little tips. Here's one of Doug's quick tips. Let us know what you think?

The idea is to provide some short quick tips throughout the day.  We will try to mix up the platforms to include Mac's, PC's, and all the mobile devices.  Here are two quick tips for you to try.

The first is:

On your iPad make your typing easier by switching the keyboard to thumb mode by :
Simply swipe two fingers across the keyboard. This displays a different keyboard, which allows you to type with your thumbs the same way you type on your iPhone.

The second quick tip is:

If you put your phone on airplane mode, it will charge twice as fast.
If you would like us to do some quick tips email us at

1689. Getting connected in Airports

I travel a lot, through lots of different airports. In each one, I have to worry about how to get connected. Some airports have airline lounges that have free Wifi--I just need to know the password. Is there some easy way to figure out how to get connected in every airport?

So you're one of those people that sits outside the airport lounge stealing the free Wi-Fi that they lounge members get. Well in any case there is free Wi-Fi available at lots of different airports and sometimes it's difficult to know how to get connected. What's most important is to connect to the real Wi-Fi I network because you'll find lots of fake ones in airports that people are using to steal information from you so it would be nice to know which Wi-Fi network to connect to. I found an application that does this and gives you the information you need. There are lots of apps there that handle travel information but this one seemed to have it all in one place. It's called FlyOh. There's also a website. that has information about the application. In any case it's available on Android and iPhone and it gives you lots of information about airports including food, options, and public transportation in and out of the airport. Check it out. I'll be using it next time I travel. That's for sure.

1690. Backup using Windows File History

I'm using Windows 10, and I need some super-easy way to back up files that I'm working on. I have, in the past, made changes that I wanted to back out of, and a few times, I have even deleted files that I really needed. I'd feel better if all my work was backed up constantly. But I can't remember to do it faithfully. Is there some tool built into Windows to make this easier?
You might say that we're both obsessed with backup tools. We spend far too much time researching, testing, and using various backup tools. Each of us has local, online, and continuous backup working for us, so that there's little chance we'll get stuck losing work that we can't afford to lose. We've saved our lives (our technical lives, of course) several times by having good backups available.
We're both happy with DropBox, a "freemium" service that does provide contemporaneous online backup for your files. DropBox even keeps version history for you, so that you can revert back to previous versions of any file that it has saved for you. The drawback to DropBox is that the free version gets you only 2GB of storage (which may, in fact, be enough to back up your important documents), and it only backs up files in one folder (which can contain multiple subfolders). It works with most operating systems, including Windows and OS X, of course; and it works well. It does require you storing all your documents in your DropBox folder, but if you buy into that philosophy, it can work well for protecting your important files. (
If you're leery of using an offsite/online backup like DropBox, or even if you do use it, you might want to also add a local backup for ease of recovery (and tighter security). Windows 8.1 and Windows 10 provide a great tool, called File History, which can take care of your needs. Once you set up File History and enable the feature, it will back up your files at regular intervals. Then, if you make a change to a file and want to revert to a previous version, you can--from Windows Explorer, simply right-click and choose the option to restore from a previous version. The following link can help get you started with this useful feature:
Note that using Windows File History is simple, but it does require you to have an external hard drive attached to your computer--it won't work unless you do. Of course, USB-attached hard drives are easy to come by, and they're inexpensive. Find an external hard drive, connect it to your computer, and you're all set to use Windows File History. We recommend this new feature highly.

1691. Adjust Mouse Speed on Windows

I just bought a new mouse, and the scrolling speed seems completely wrong: Everything moves too quickly. Is there some way to manage the speed at which the mouse scroll wheel causes the screen to move?
Using a new mouse is similar to wearing new shoes—things very seldom feel like a perfect fit for a while. Moving the mouse scroll wheel up or down should make the text in the current document move up or down, but the speed at which it scrolls can be variable, depending on the design of the mouse and settings you make in Windows. We all have a scrolling speed with which we’re comfortable; anything else feels awkward.
The trick is to set the number of lines you want to scroll with each scroll of the mouse wheel. You can find this setting in different places, depending on the specific version of Windows you’re using. In Windows 10, in the Settings app, select Devices, and then Mouse and Touchpad. (Look for Mouse settings in Control Panel in earlier versions of Windows.) The default behavior is to scroll three lines for each scroll of the mouse wheel, and you can select a larger or smaller number. Try out your new settings before you close the window, of course.
The problem is that most new mice don’t have detents in the mouse scroll wheel, like older mice do. Because of this, it’s not completely clear what action corresponds to the number of lines you ask the mouse to scroll—it will take trial and error to get the value set correctly.
Also, be aware that if you have installed specific mouse driver software (and really, it’s very seldom necessary to do this) that mouse software might also have settings that interact with or conflict with the Windows settings. Make sure you check the settings in your mouse software, if you have installed it.

1692. Replace Ctrl-Alt-Delete on Mac

I'm a PC User moving to a Mac, and for the life of me, I can't figure out how to replace the Ctrl-Alt-Delete keystroke that I'm used to using on my Windows PC. What's the magic trick?

For those of us that are old enough we recall that pressing control-alt-delete on a DOS. P.C. would just reboot the computer. These days in the Windows 10 world, press a control-alt-delete brings up a menu of options like logging out, restarting the computer, and bringing up task manager. 

All of these are available on a Mac but not by pressing the control-alt-delete keystroke. That doesn't do anything. 

If you want a task manager, or some way to kill applications that aren't running correctly, you can press, Option, Command, Escape and that brings up a dialog that allows you to kill running applications. 

If you want to restart your computer where you can get there from the Apple menu and choose, restart your computer. 

In any case the control-alt-delete keystroke doesn't work and doesn't do anything on a Mac. You'll need to have find replacements for that same keystroke. We have a link to an article on our website that shows various things you can get to that emulate the behavior of control-alt-delete. But stop trying on the Mac. It doesn't do anything.

1693. Airport X-Ray Scanners and Phones

I travel often, and worry about airport scanners interacting with my phone. Is there danger involved in scanning my phone at the airport?

You know I'm a pretty proficient pianist and pretty good at computers, but I cannot claim to be an expert at Xray technologies.

On the other hand I've done some research into this and in my non-technical research what I found out is that your phone is at more danger of getting bombarded by Xrays once it's on the plane then it is when it's going through the Xray machine at the airport. 

They've designed the security machines to be as minimally invasive to your technology as possible and the real issue is once you're up in the air you have less protection from Xrays and other magnetic particles then you do in the Xray machine.

So stop worrying about it. Just put it on the tray. Let it go through. It'll be fine.

1694. Installing Windows 10 for Free

I have a Mac and I'd like to use Boot Camp to install a copy of Windows 10, so I can boot to that partition and run Windows. Is there some legal way to do this without purchasing a license key? I don't have any currently installed operating system from which to upgrade, and that's the only way I know of to get Windows 10 for free.

We're all for getting free things but we're also all for doing things legally. Luckily with Windows 10, supposedly you can install a fresh copy on a bare hard drive, and just not enter a license key. 

Windows 10 will nag you to get a license key every now and then but it doesn't block out important features. Not entering a license key does block some features you're unlikely to need.

There's an article on our website you can look at for more information about using Windows, without a license key. This only works with Windows 10 so don't try it with earlier versions, but you can use Windows 10 somewhat indefinitely. There's no information know when this might get locked down but for now you can certainly try it and use Windows 10 with just a little bit of nagging for free.