Five Favorite Google Chrome Extensions

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Let’s just look at them, left to right, shall we? My Chrome browser has over 40 of these added to it, so I’m just going to discuss those I use most often. You can get extensions that do all kinds of cool things – a couple I haven’t covered here include the ability to record a webinar and another that allows you to capture all images from a website. Handy stuff to have available at the push of a button, would you agree?

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capturepluginprintfriendly

Print Friendly & PDF

That first one is Print Friendly & PDF. I use that to remove the noise from articles where I just want the text. It allows you to download a PDF file that satisfies a minimalist approach. As the name implies, it can also save you some ink or toner and page count on your printer.

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ColorZilla

ColorZilla

Next is ColorZilla and that little eyedropper allows you to take a sample of a color from any webpage. It copies the hex code to your clipboard, so you can use it to color whatever it is you are working on, like backgrounds, fonts, etc. It’s extremely useful when you are trying to match color schemes to colors in images.

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capturepluginmightytext

MightText

MightyText – click the image to see the web page. If you are like me, you may struggle a bit to get exactly the text you want into your little smartphone SMS window. With MightText, I’m using my PC to send text, images, website links, whatever…. It is, as the name suggests, one mighty little plugin!

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capturepluginhubspotsales

HubSpot Sales email tracking

The best feature of this plugin from HubSpot is the instant notification you get when someone opens your email message. Now you know they are probably available and you can follow up with a phone call. Of course, some email platforms allow you to turn on notification, but there’s no guarantee you’ll receive that message. So far, this little tool has been very helpful by allowing me to track email messages sent to clients.

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capturegrammarly

Grammarly

That little green circle with the arrow in it is Grammarly and I’m using the free version. It pops up a message as soon as you misspell anything. This is very handy for me, as I like to think I’m as clear as possible with every word of every sentence. It also checks your punctuation and syntax, so if I add a comma or don’t finish a question with a question mark, it questions the intent of my content!

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Back to the home page.

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TFA (Two-Factor Authentication) a.k.a., 2FA

google-2fa

Something I mentioned in answer to a question about hacked websites and hacked Gmail this morning, while I thought it relatively new, has (now that I think about it….) been around for many years! By that, I mean decades. Way back when, before the Internet was known to so many people, we had really cool two-factor authentication services up and running at Lockheed Missiles and Space Company, in Sunnyvale, CA.240px-lockheed-logo_winnie-mae

So, enough with the history, already….

Today, you can find many purveyors of this security feature. Below, I’ve included links to two articles on Google’s offering and two articles on Apple’s versions. Enjoy!

LifeHacker’s Article on TFA

Another LifeHacker Article on TFA

Two-factor authentication for Apple ID

And, one more, from Apple….

Security How-To: Enable two-factor authentication on iOS 9 and OS X El Capitan

Basic Computer Skills – Image Transfer

copy to cameradownloadTransferring photos from your camera or phone to your computer.

Introduction – mousehelp@rouzell.com

1) Advance planning – make a folder to receive the images
– name it CameraDownload, or whatever you like.

Windows-E – hold down your windows key and type the letter, “e” on your keyboard.
Find your Pictures directory, open it, and make a new folder inside of it. In the video, I show how to do this with a right click on your mouse.

2) Plug in your device – camera or phone – with a USB cable.
Adjust to turn on the device – camera or smartphone – on my phone, I had to change the USB settings from charging to file transfer!

If you still have your pictures directory open, click on “This PC” or “My Computer.”
Where it lists the C drive and other drives on your PC, you should see the name of your camera or smartphone there.

3) Find your device on your computer and open the DCIM folder.

4) Change the view, so you can see the images.
Right click the mouse on the left edge of the window and choose, “large icons.”

5) Select and drag images to the folder you made in step 1, above.
Click on the first image you want to copy and use either shift or CTRL on your keyboard to select a range or multiple images.
Use the left mouse button – click down and drag your images to the target directory. Yes, there are other methods you may use to accomplish this task.

For now, print these instructions and use the link below to watch the video on my YouTube channel….

Mousehelp.com – “Compassionate care for people with computers.”
http://mousehelp.com – links – choose YouTube Channel

One More, For Fun

Here’s another embedded Tweet, for your reading pleasure.

Use it or lose it, applies to muscles and brains!

Embedding Tweets

This may be useful, or serve no purpose, depending on your use of Social Media to promote your message, or your business. Below you’ll see an embedded Tweet that came from a post I put on Facebook, with a link back to an article on my personal blog. So, posting this here now, in some ways closes the loop. Perhaps I need a graphic to illustrate this concept?

Recently, my business has seen an increased focus on website and blog creation. I’m pretty sure my blogs would see far less traffic if I did not share my posts on Social Media. If you’d like to have more visitors to your business website, it makes sense to create content that helps people find you. The end result is the KLT value you get by giving prospects the opportunity to see and hear what you are willing to share about your interests. On my personal blog, I talk about anything that moves me (at times, even painful topics) that merely serve my need to continue writing.

Another Patch Tuesday and Three More Solid State Drives (SSD)

In case you missed it, yesterday was patch Tuesday. A few clients have reported issues with things being not quite right and in all cases, Windows Update History
problems were related to the updates not having finished properly. Rebooting fixes this most often and that was the remedy for each computer user I’ve helped thus far. So, as always, if your computer isn’t working as it should, try rebooting, to see if you can clear the problem, before you call for your friendly computer guru for help.

Samsung SSDIf you haven’t heard of SSD technology, you will. It is the most impressive update to computer technology in years! The only downside to running your computer with a Solid State Drive is that you will be spoiled by the speed improvement. Because of that, you’ll know a new level of impatience when working with slow computers. I’m not sure why I said, “Three more….” except that I think that’s how many more upgrades I’ll be doing this week, if all goes according to plan. Call or write for details on the cost of upgrading your computer.

 

Wouldn’t It Be Nice

SM stuffIf you had a simple, “add my social media sites” button you could use whenever some new website asks you for these details, would it save you some time?

I’m working on it!

 

Windows 10 Settings and Control Panels

My issue was that I could not remove the directory “windows.old” after upgrading to Windows 10.

what is cortanaSo, I asked Cortana and got this:
Delete your previous version of Windows
One month after you upgrade to Windows 10, your previous version of Windows will be automatically deleted from your PC. However, if you need to free up disk space, and you’re confident that your files and settings are where you want them to be in Windows 10, you can safely delete it yourself. Keep in mind that you’ll be deleting your Windows.old folder, which contains files that give you the option to go back to your previous version of Windows.
Deleting your previous version of Windows can’t be undone.
Go to Start, enter Settings in the search box, and then select Settings.
Select System > Storage > This PC and then scroll down the list and select Temporary files.
Under Previous version of Windows, select Delete previous versions and then select Delete.

Help from Microsoft – Was this helpful?

Not just, “yes,” but heck yeah!!!Remove Windows Old

Pointing out the difference between Settings and Control Panels seems obvious to me, now. Because of my experience, I’m prone to taking shortcuts with Windows. So, I was thinking that if I was to open the System (settings), why not just click start and type, “system” in the search field – which I did. Then I chose the System control panel and could find no place there that would allow me to get to “storage.” However, if I type “storage” into the search field, I am presented with “Storage, System settings” as the top result. Choosing that puts me on the path to solving the problem, in accordance with the instructions provided by Microsoft.

Do you need help with getting Windows 10 up and running on your computer? Or, maybe your website needs some sprucing up, or you’ve always wanted to start a blog, but you didn’t know where to begin!

Drop me a line or give me a call and I will help you with anything related to communications and computers.

 

Considerations Prior To Your Windows 10 Upgrade

Image source: http://www.komando.com/happening-now/310826/windows-10-worries-7-things-that-wont-work-after-you-upgrade/all

Image source: http://www.komando.com

  1. Is it necessary?
    The simple answer is, no. While that answer assumes you are happy with your current Windows 7 or 8 operating system, the answer is further qualified or disqualified by benefits and the all-important idea – Free (until July of next year), which is a pretty good deal.
  2. What are the benefits?
    Long ago, I learned to use the sage advice of others to answer my questions. It would take several blog posts to fully detail all of the benefits of using the new Windows 10 OS. So, here is a link to several articles others have written. Do your research and decide for yourself. The primary reason for my upgrade is, that’s just how it is with me. I must run Windows 10, so I’ll know how to help you. And, I like it.
  3. What are the drawbacks?

    Advice extracted from this article: “Better the Devil ye ken, than the Devil ye don’t” — those are wise words, born of much pain.

  4. Why not wait?
    If it really doesn’t interest you, or it doesn’t matter in the least, there’s no reason to not simply wait. Watch the dust settle, or just go outside for some fresh air – it’s so nice in the desert, this time of year! Eventually, Microsoft will issue hundreds of patches and probably, “Service Pack 1,” as it has for other versions of Windows. By that time, Windows 10 should be pretty stable. End your waiting prior to July 28, 2016, however, if you want a free Windows 10 upgrade.
  5. Links I’ve used while writing this post:

________________________________________________________

Today, I was going to take the plunge with Margaret’s computer. My wife has little interest in the version of Windows running on her computer. When I asked her if she would like me to upgrade to Windows 10, she laughed (the best result I can get….) and said, “You may as well ask me if I want the X11 refrigerator! Does it keep things cold? Then, yes.”

The answer to your question is, yes. I think a Windows 10 upgrade, for most people, should have little impact. For power users, it is definitely a meaningful upgrade.

Kim Komando is a great source for advice about Windows 10. She is far more paranoid about the “security risks” of having Microsoft track your activities than I am, however. Still, her site provides a wealth of information about things worth considering before you make the leap to Windows 10.
http://www.komando.com/happening-now/310826/windows-10-worries-7-things-that-wont-work-after-you-upgrade/all

http://www.forbes.com/sites/gordonkelly/2015/10/16/microsoft-windows-10-free-upgrade-changes/
http://www.forbes.com/sites/gordonkelly/2015/08/02/windows-10-vs-windows-8-vs-windows-7-whats-the-difference/

http://winsupersite.com/windows-10/details-changes-windows-10-activation-threshold-2

Printing and PDF

Recently, a client wrote to ask, “What’s going on here?” The answer is easy, as is the remedy. What happens is, your computer has looked for your default printer and not finding it, has provided this alternative. Before we go fix the sleeping printer problem, let’s talk about, “Save as PDF” and the potential benefit. Suppose you are going to print an email or a recipe, something that warrants yet another bit of paperwork you will manage. If it is something you intend to keep, might it be nice to have a backup copy on your computer? Save as PDF will produce that file for you. Name it well and put it in a folder that makes sense, so you can find it again, when you need it (or, when you lose the hard copy you are about to produce.)

Now, to fix the problem with the printer, you have to make sure it is “awake” and ready to “talk” with your computer. On many modern printers, the energy saving feature lets them go into a “sleep” mode that may interrupt communications. Simply tap the screen, or maybe push the power button for a second and the printer should wake up. Having done this, the computer should recognize that it can send a print job there, but you still have one more step to do before you’ll see the “Print” button where the “Save” button is now.

print to local destinationsRight under “Save as PDF” is a button labelled, “Change.” Click that button, then click on “Manage,” under Local destination in this window and you should see your printer there. If it is not there, you may have to reboot, to get the two machines to talk to each other again.

By the way, if you choose the first option and Save as PDF, you can always print the resulting PDF file to your printer. It does give you a nice preview of what will come out of the printer. Sometimes that preview will show you something you didn’t intend to print at all! That’s a topic for another post.

Enjoy!