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nces! Personalise your desktop, tweak the settings and fix all annoya
ALSO INSIDE... Master Word documents Create a 3D photo effect
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Get rid of distractions Declutter your machine Tame web browser tabs Add an external drive
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| March 2017
Welcome Windows 10 just keeps getting better and better, but it’s not perfect – for every brilliant new feature, there are the little niggles that annoy. Sometimes it feels like it’s two steps forwards, one step back. So in our lead feature (page 11) we’re going to show you how to bend Windows 10 to your will: from setting up the system from scratch and tweaking File Explorer, to customising the Settings and the desktop. We’ll even show you how to tame those things that irk so using your PC
will be easier, more productive and more fun than ever before. Once you’ve got all that sorted, you can discover how to protect your precious files with our in-depth guide to backing up your PC (page 44). And we’ll show you how to lock down your PC so your privacy and security are protected online and off (page 50). And that’s just the start. Finally, don’t forget to visit www.windowsmag. co.uk and sign up for our newsletter. Enjoy,
Rob Mead-Green Editor
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Detox Windows for a faster, smoother-running PC Record your screen Take control of Windows updates Build your dream machine
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11 Customise Windows 10
Take control of your PC and make it work exactly the way you want it to
44 Perfect backups
Never lose a file again with our in-depth guide to backing up your machine
50 Lock down your PC now!
Discover the essential tips and tricks that will help keep you safe, online and offline
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coming up in the September 2018 issue
Explore The best PC tutorials Your guide Rob Mead-Green says…
“If you’re looking for better ways to use your home computer, then this is the place to start. We’ll show you all the tips and tricks the experts use and more!” 24 Master Word documents 27 Make your PC more secure 30 Sync your smartphone with Windows using ‘Continue on PC’
64 Get answers to your technical questions with help from our PC experts 4
| August 2018
32 Create a 3D photo effect with Photoshop Elements 2018
40 Sort out your web browser tabs – it’s easy and it’s free!
36 Banish unwanted distractions 42 How to format and use an with Cold Turkey Blocker external drive with your PC 38 Free up space on your PC
subscription bundle offer Digital and print together with free USB charging hub! Find out more on page 20
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August 2018 |
NEW things to do
Precious memories Treat your captures right and help make them look their very best.
Photo by Cameron Kirby on Unsplash
| August 2018
Discover Do more with your photos
Sn ap pin g ha pp ier
Turn your photos into masterpieces for free
We’re all carrying around cameras – but are we really giving our phone photos the love they need?
GIMP (gimp.org) has been around for o you’re taking a lot of photos. more than 20 years – it’s a clone, of sorts, We all are. The first, most of Adobe Photoshop, and contains important thing to do before many of the same photo-tweaking taking any more is to make sure features – but it can be hard to get to they’re being backed up, preferably grips with and is a little unstable. automatically. You could plug your There are simpler tools around that smartphone into your PC using the can pull off real results. Fotor (fotor.com), supplied cable and drag those snaps for example, offers up a set of premiuminto a folder, but that’s not enough: you quality filters for free, and can turn a should also make sure that they’re either boring photo capture into something heading to iCloud or Google Photos that looks like it straight from your phone, so you also There are simple tools was taken by a pro have a copy in the around that can pull off photographer. And despite its cloud, just in case strange interface, something happens some real results the free PhotoScape to your device. (photoscape.org) is both fast and gives you quick access to the adjustment tools better photos and filters that your phone photos need. Even with modern camera phones, it’s The best fix, though, is not taking a easier to take disappointing pictures bad photo in the first place. Make sure than it is to take great ones. There’s not your phone is stable – press your elbows much that can be done if your image is into your sides, and take your photo by massively blurry, but for everything else there are a number of options. Windows’ pressing and releasing, rather than tapping, the on-screen button – and Photos app includes several tools that your results should improve. can help you fix common problems.
Repointed The Microsoft IntelliMouse is back Microsoft’s hardware division isn’t only working on high-end products like the Surface. The company is still creating new and improved peripherals, as is proven by the newly-resurrected Classic IntelliMouse, an updated take on the iconic pointing device. Now refitted with the BlueTrack sensor of Microsoft’s other recent mice, but retaining the comfortable shape that made so many users into stalwart fans. You can buy one for £40 from Microsoft’s online store.
Double-click The Classic IntelliMouse (left) bears a close resemblance to its older sibling.
No drag The updated sensor reports back 1,000 times per second for a smoother ride.
Click right You can, of course, completely configure the IntelliMouse’s buttons.
Windows Sets What’s this? It’s like browser tabs, but for Windows apps. Sets allows you to... ...Hang on. Haven’t you already talked about Windows Sets before? Ahem. Yes. We have. We talked about how Microsoft had been working on Sets for a long time, and was looking to introduce it in an update to Windows 10 in the near future. But it turns out that those plans – as they so often do – have changed. How so? We’re not entirely sure. Sets has been included with Windows Insider test builds for some time now, allowing Insiders to take an early look at what we presume was near-finished tech, and provide their feedback on it. From our own tests, Sets worked as described, enabling us to group applications into single windows which can be resized and moved around as one, but in a surprise move Microsoft has removed Sets from recent builds. Insider Program head Dona Sarkar says the company is working on “improvements to the visual design and continuing to better integrate Office and Microsoft Edge into Sets to enhance workflow”. So it’s not gone for good? That verbiage certainly suggests that Sets will make a comeback – or, even, a public appearance – at some point down the line, but it’s definitely on hold for now. Microsoft didn’t directly promise that Sets would be finished any time soon, so the company’s use of the Insider program to presumably make it even better is, really, what Insider is all about. But I want it now! While it may be gone from the Insider program, you can do something similar using Groupy, from the perennial Windows hackers at Stardock (www. stardock.com/products/groupy/). It’s not free, with the full version costing $7.49 (around £6.50), but there’s a 30-day trial available so you can see if its applicationtabbing formula – which looks a whole lot like Sets – is really for you.
August 2018 |
Ev erybod y’s tal king about
The future of robotics
Artificial intelligence and engineering ingenuity are giving rise to a completely new breed of ‘bot
onda’s Asmio robot is no more. The bipedal human-esque creation, which famously fell down a flight of stairs on stage just as its creator was explaining how good it was at keeping its balance, has been retired as Honda seeks to roll its tech into more practical pursuits. Asimo was showing its age – the project first began in the 1980s, and had undergone nearly two decades of refinement since it was revealed to the public in 2000 – and Honda was facing stiff competition. Boston Dynamics, a subsidiary of Alphabet (the parent company of Google), has been working hard on both biped and quadruped bots, and is getting to the point where its Atlas humanoid (which also suffered an on-stage tumble in 2017) can now reliably perform backflips. Boston Dynamics plans to put its equal parts cute and terrifying dog-like SpotMini bot on sale in 2019 for an as yet unknown price. But robot perambulation isn’t the only big development. SoftBank’s Pepper bot, which uses built-in sensors to analyse human emotions, has found a place
manning stores in Japan and offering personalised customer service in banks. SoftBank is also working on a robot named Romeo, geared towards helping those with limited autonomy. Online supermarket Ocado has drastically cut picking times by running entire warehouses with robots, working as a hive mind and controlled from a central computer – and Ocado even has robots to fix those robots if they misbehave. We’re not sure what happens when those robots break down. Even so, it’ll likely be a while before you find a robot much more advanced than a Roomba roaming around your home. Technology is flying forward, and even today’s toy ‘bots are making leaps ahead – see examples like Boxer and Cozmo, which use a combination of AI and clever programming to seem as much like little creatures as they do like wheeled desktop distractions. But as today’s development examples prove, you may well one day have a robot taking care of you, a robot bounding around your garden, and you probably already have a robot packing your shopping delivery.
Download this… Eartrumpet https://bit.ly/2tE8Adp Windows’ volume controls are, at the best of times, a little awkward, and downright obtuse at their worst. Windows 8 and 10, for all their improvements, took away a lot of control, and tucked away a number of audio features in obscure menus. Eartrumpet is the perfect way to take precise control of your audio and get those features back, from per-app controls to setting custom inputs and outputs, probably the most glaring omission from recent versions of Windows. It also lets you quickly switch between multiple sources, perfect if you have a headset plugged into a USB port and don’t want to have to unplug it in order to switch audio to your speakers. Eartrumpet is available from the Microsoft Store, and it’s absolutely free – we’d say it’s a mustdownload whether you’re an audio power user or not.
Slip and slide You can customise the volume control’s looks to suit you.
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uiz The 60-Secondm Q e sta rts no w! Pe ns at th e rea d y, yo u r ti
What colour was the Osborne 1, the first ever luggable PC?
Google’s first ever server was housed inside which toy?
At which university was Britain’s first computer located?
A Lego B Play-Doh C Stickle Bricks
A Grey B Black C Orange
A Manchester B Cambridge C Bristol
A CERN B NASA C Google
A 192K B 512K C 1024K
At which famous organisation was the first web server located?
How much RAM did the first version of Windows require?
How much did IBM’s first commercial hard drive, the 305, weigh? A 1 ton B 583lbs C 13lbs
Answers 1A. 2A. 3A. 4A. 5A. 6A.
| August 2018
NEXT ISSUE ON SALE Friday
Discover Facts & figures
128gb Rob Mead-Green reveals a host of fascinating digital facts
Amount of RAM that could be found inside a laptop near you soon – Lenovo’s new ThinkPad P52, and Dell’s Precision 7530 and 7700 are all capable of carrying these huge amounts of memory, while Lenovo’s machine can also hold a whopping 6TB of on-board storage.
88.62mph Top speed achieved by the Jaguar V20E powerboat in June – a new world record. While that might not seem that fast, the Jaguar powerboat is driven solely by a batterypowered electric motor and bested the previous record, set ten years ago, by over 12mph. The record attempt took place on Coniston Water, Cumbria in June.
Amount of renewable energy Samsung says it’s going to use to make its products in the US, Europe and China by 2020. Both Apple and Google already use enough solar and wind energy to be entirely carbon neutral.
Rumoured launch date for the next Xbox, which will comprise a whole family of devices, although it’s not yet known what they will be. Xbox boss Phil Spencer says Microsoft is already “deep into architecturing”, and will deliver on its commitment to set the benchmark for gaming.
Number of patents awarded by the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) since it was founded in 1790. The 10 millionth patent was awarded to Joseph Marron and Raytheon for “Coherent LADAR Using Intra-Pixel Quadrature Detection”… LADAR is, of course, the laser detection system self-driving cars use to identify the obstacles around them, as well as their range and speed.
4,804 Theoretical top speed (in Mbps) of Asus’s ROG Rapture GT-AX11000 Wi-Fi router, which will go on sale this autumn. Aimed at gamers, the router uses next generation 802.11ax radios, which are expected to start appearing in all kinds of other wireless products next year.
August 2018 |
The hottest new Windows hardware on the horizon
Asus Project Precog Price TBC www.asus.com According to the 2002 movie Minority Report, a precog is a gifted individual with the ability to see into the future – a suitable name then for Asus’ incredibly innovative Project Precog laptop, which uses Artificial Intelligence (AI) to power its twin LCD displays – one where you’d normally expect to find a laptop screen, and the other where the keyboard and trackpad normally sit. Why AI? Because the laptop is able to adjust the Intelligent Touch virtual keyboard on the second display so it’s always right under your fingertips as you type. Plus the second display can automatically tell when you are using a stylus and change its input mechanics accordingly. Clever. Naturally, Project Precog also works seamlessly with Cortana, and Amazon’s Alexa as well – perfect for an AI-powered Microsoft Office 365. When can you get one? In the “near future”, of course. Even precogs can’t work miracles.
| August 2018
Windows 10 Customise your PC
Nick Peers examines ways in which you can add missing features to Windows while giving it a makeover
indows 10 is a flexible beast, designed to balance the needs of millions of users by offering a certain amount of flexibility in how it can be set up and configured. But many people simply make do with the state Windows is in when it’s presented to them. The result is that your PC isn’t set up to work as efficiently as it might, never mind act in the way you’re expecting it to. If you’ve been putting up with missing features or you’re looking for a different way to do things you’ve come to the right place. We’ll start by separating your data from Windows by moving it to a new drive or partition so problems with one won’t bring the other to a halt.
After we’ve helped you perform some basic setup tweaks, we’ll then move on to examine some of the biggest annoyances you’re likely to encounter in Windows 10. You’ll discover the tools and techniques you need to get around these – and restore missing features from earlier versions of Windows – before taking a look at ways you can freshen the Windows desktop, either with a radical new look or by introducing more tools and features to change the way you interact with it – in a positive way of course. We’ll then finish with a look at some more tips and tools, including ways of getting Windows 10 features in earlier versions of Windows. So let’s crack on and get Windows set up to work for you, not against you…
August 2018 |
Set up your PC Step one is to ensure you have all the core parts of your system set up just the way you want them to be
e’re going to dive in with a piece of major surgery you may have already applied following our advice in earlier issues. The aim is to separate your key user folders from the drive Windows and your applications are stored on. If something goes wrong with Windows, you can restore it knowing your data is untouched. The obvious solution is to install a second storage drive, then simply move your files to that. In many cases that might not be practical, so the alternative is to partition your main drive following the guide in the box below.
Move data folders
Your new drive or partition is now ready – after a possible reboot – to receive your data. Open File Explorer to this new drive and create and name a folder (using your username, perhaps), inside which you can create sub-folders for Documents, Pictures, Music and so on. Now it’s a simple case of moving each user folder to the new partition in a way that ensures Windows keeps track of their new home. Open File Explorer to This PC, right-click your Documents folder and choose Properties > Location tab. Click ‘Move’ and then select the Documents sub-folder you created. Click ‘Apply’ followed by Yes and your data will be moved across. Repeat for the other folders and your data has been
You need to switch System Restore back on after every major Windows update, like the recently released April 2018 Update.
split off, with File History still able to back it all up seamlessly. Now use Macrium Reflect Free (www.macrium. com/reflectfree.aspx) to take regular differential drive images following the step-by-step guide opposite and you’ll be able to roll back your system at any time without affecting your data. By default, this protects your system on a weekly basis – use System Restore to roll back more incremental changes. By default, it gets switched off after every major Windows 10 feature update, so press [Win] + [Pause/Break] and click System Protection. Select your system
disk (typically drive C) and click Configure to turn it on. Set disk space usage to around 5GB (typically 5-10 percent) before clicking OK.
You can add facial recognition to Windows using your webcam and Rohos Face Logon.
Partition your drive Download and install AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard from www.disk-partition.com – after launching, start by clicking Make Bootable Media under Wizards to create a rescue disc, just in case. Next, check how much free space is on drive C – if it’s less than the size of your user folder you’ll need to move data files off the drive before you begin to free up enough free space for your data partition. Once that’s done, select the C drive and choose Check Partition under Partition Operations. Once its health has been verified, select
Resize/Move Partition. Use the slider to reduce the size of drive C to leave the required space for your data partition – as a result, try to leave at least 10GB free space on your C drive for future programs to occupy. After clicking OK, select drive D (typically your optical disc or DVD drive) and choose Change Drive Letter, setting it to Z. Now select the free space you’ve created and choose Create Partition. Leave the default settings alone (but label it Data). Click Apply > Proceed and reboot to partition your drive.
| August 2018
AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard is a free tool that can divide your hard drive into two to split data from Windows.
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