What Would Happen If Microsoft Killed A Program And No One Noticed? The Sad Story Of MSN Travel

MSN Travel - the abandoned Windows 8 app

Alas, poor MSN Travel! We knew it well.

That’s not true. If we had paid any attention to it, it would probably still be alive.

At some point in the last month, Microsoft gutted MSN Travel, one of the apps created as a showcase for the new program designs in Windows 8 and Windows Phone. […] continued

Read more

What You Need To Know About Windows 10 Upgrades

Windows 7 & 8 users are beginning to see Windows 10 upgrade notifications

You may see a new Windows icon appear in your taskbar soon, alerting you to the upcoming release of Windows 10. Microsoft just began to activate the notices on Sunday, and all Windows 7 & 8 users will see them eventually. Here’s what you need to know about Windows 10 upgrades! […] continued

Read more

The Windows 10 Start Menu Is A Cluttered Mess

Windows 10 Start menu

Windows 10 is being tested by millions of people as it enters its final development phase before being released later this summer. Its technical underpinnings are solid and mature. There are genuinely innovative new features. It will be given away for free to more than a billion people worldwide; more or less every computer in the world running Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 will be offered a free upgrade for a year after Windows 10 is released. […] continued

Read more

Restart Your Computer To Finish Patch Tuesday

Patch Tuesday - restart your computer twice, just in case

Microsoft released the usual rich crop of patches and updates for Windows and Office on Patch Tuesday this week. On my Windows 8.1 computers, two restarts were required – one for the first 39 updates, then a second restart for an additional 11 updates. It’s not required but you might want to restart your computer an extra time, just in case it helps finish the process of installing this week’s patches. […] continued

Read more

OneDrive For Business And Microsoft’s Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow

OneDrive vs. OneDrive For Business - login screen

Someday the difference between OneDrive and OneDrive For Business will be easy to understand.

Someday OneDrive For Business will work smoothly and the two services will be consistent.

Someday the services will have a system for sharing files that makes sense for small businesses.

But not today.

Microsoft shared more information about the roadmap for OneDrive at two conferences last week and now we know that OneDrive and OneDrive For Business are still going to be confusing and messy for at least another year. […] continued

Read more

How To Speed Up Your Slow Computer

Speed up a slow computer with an SSD

Spoiler alert! How do you speed up a slow computer? For most of you, the answer is: Buy a new computer.

Realistically, there isn’t a better choice for most people. It’s a numbers game. If you have to pay someone for help with technical jobs, then the economics tip over quickly to a new computer. […] continued

Read more

How To Defend Yourself Against Adware & Malware

Adware & malware / virus - where it comes from, how to avoid it

I spent the weekend trying to clean adware off a perfectly nice computer. One errant click and the damage was done: web pages began filling with links to ads, injected by the blizzard of programs, browser extensions and add-ins that had come on board. The browser home pages were changed, the desktop was littered with new icons, popups were appearing in the middle of the screen, on and on. […] continued

Read more

OneNote Clipper Is The Best Way To Save Web Pages (And OneNote Keeps Getting Better)

OneNote Clipper is the best way to save web pages

An update to OneNote Clipper has made it the easiest and best way to save content from the web, from entire web pages to just the content you want – articles, recipes, pictures, or anything else. It’s only the latest in a series of updates for OneNote; Microsoft has been improving OneNote continuously, taking an already great program and making it better, especially on mobile devices. […] continued

Read more

Eliminate Crapware With Signature Edition PCs

Microsoft Signature Edition PCs - no junkware

When you’re shopping for a new computer, especially a laptop, take a look at the Microsoft store for Signature Edition PCs. The selection is interesting, the prices are comparable to what you might pay elsewhere, and the opportunity to get a clean PC is worth considering.

A new computer is more likable when there is no crapware installed on it – the junk programs chosen by the manufacturers to make a few extra dollars by preinstalling unnecessary utilities, useless apps, terrible games, and advertising-laden trials of unwanted programs. […] continued

Read more

Let Your Eyes Relax With f.lux

F.lux - free program to adjust the warmth of your monitor

I stand at my desktop computer at all hours of the day and night. When I reformatted the hard drive on my desktop computer, f.lux was the first program I installed after I got Windows running. I’ve used it for many years to reduce eyestrain at night and make it easier to sleep. […] continued

Read more

Using HP Scan & Capture To Create PDFs From Your Scanner

HP Scan and Capture - free Windows 8 app for creating PDFs from your scanner

HP Scan and Capture is a free app for Windows 8.1 that can create PDFs from scanned documents – if your computer and scanner meet the requirements. It may help some of you avoid paying Adobe’s expensive subscription rate for Adobe Acrobat.

The takeaway

•  HP Scan and Capture reaches out to your HP scanner and creates either JPGs or multi-page PDFs. […] continued

Read more

Rules For Computer Safety 2015

Rules for computer safety 2015

These are the rules for being safe using a Windows computer in 2015.

We are required to be paranoid and vigilant. We run our businesses and manage our personal lives online, and the bad guys are endlessly inventive in their effort to find ways through our defenses.

The consequences are greater if you make a mistake. […] continued

Read more

Happy Holidays From Bruceb Consulting!

Happy holidays from Bruceb Consulting!

Season’s greetings! I hope the end of 2014 finds you warm and safe, with plenty of gadgets and gizmos to keep you entertained.

The last year was the best of times and the worst of times for technology. Apple released the iPhone 6, which raised the bar for mobile devices. Google responded with continuous updates for Android that pushed it out of its gawky adolescence to become a mature and polished platform. […] continued

Read more

Microsoft And The Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow

Microsoft - just wait until next year, things will be better, you'll see

In some ways Microsoft did not have a great year in 2014. Windows 8 deserves better but it can only be called an interesting failure and Microsoft is anxious to put it in the rear view mirror. Windows Phone does not show any sign of gaining momentum.

There is better stuff coming from Microsoft. […] continued

Read more

Windows 8 Tip: How To Delete PDFs Without Throwing Your Computer Out The Window

How to delete PDFs in Windows 8 and not go mad

Here’s a trick that may keep you from going crazy one day. I wish I’d known it before I gouged this nasty dent in the top of my desk with my forehead.

It’s such a simple thing. Open up File Explorer in Windows 8. Find a PDF that you don’t want. […] continued

Read more