Here is a list of the most useful computer tips and tricks that I am sure everyone will enjoy. There are computer tips for both beginners and advanced users. If you have your own awesome computer tip then please share it in the comment section below.
Computer Tips And Tricks For Windows Users
#1. Don’t Mess With IT
If you’re not great with computer then please don’t go changing default settings. “If it is not broke, don’t fix it.” People touch things they are not supposed to and cause problems. Most of the time if you just use your computer, and not fiddle with its settings, then your computer will run smoothly and without problems. This is the best computer tip that everyone should follow.
#2. Most Used Keyboard Shortcuts
- Press the Windows key and D to bring up the desktop.
- Press the Windows key and E to bring up the my computer.
- Press CTRL key and C to copy something after you have selected it and made it blue.
- Press CTRL key and V to paste it after you have clicked on the position where you want it top go.
- Press CTRL ALT DEL to open the Windows Task Manager.
- CTRL and A to select all text on the page. For example if you are on a Microsoft word page you can click on the page, and then press CTRL and the letter A on the keyboard to select all of the text and make it blue.
- CTRL and Z to undo what you just did. You might have deleted something by accident and pressing this UNDO combo will save you.
#3. Zoom In and Out
Press the CTRL key and the + or – key to zoom in and out. You can do this almost everywhere on your computer. If you have a mouse you can press the CTRL key and also use the scroll wheel on top of the mouse the zoom. This feature is great for people who don’t have touch screens and want to see something on their screen in a larger view.
#4. Taking a Snapshot of Your Screen
Just say you want to save a picture of something you are looking at on the screen, all you have to do is this:
- Hit the Print Screen key. This copies a bitmap of the full screen into the Windows clipboard. Start up a graphics editor and paste it in. I just go to the windows paint program and press on paste…Then I save it as a .jpg so I can edit it in my favorite picture editor. (easier to use than the paint program.)
- Alt + Print Screen will capture only the active window.
This is extra handy if there is an error or something that you cannot just copy and paste.
#5. Viewing Installed Drivers On Your Computer
First you need a command prompt so you can type commands. Go to Start menu>Choose run>Then type cmd This will give you a command prompt. Then type driverquery This will give you a list of drivers installed on your computer.
If you want to export the list to a CSV file to open in Excel, type driverquery /v /fo csv > drivers.csv (Just copy and paste this as it has to be exact)
#6. How to Find Your Root Directory
You see a lot of computer tutorials with step-by-step instructions asking you to go to the root directory of your computer. The problem is that people do not understand what the root directory is.
The root directory on a computer is where the main files are stored, including the Windows folder. With some computers you will need administrative privileges to remove or add a file to this area.
To get to the root directory on your computer, simply go to the start menu and press on the computer link. Then you will see your main hard drive, which is usually called C drive. This is most likely the name of the drive that is holding all of the important files and to open it you simply have to double-click on the drive.
If you are looking for the system root, which is where the system files are stored, then this is usually in the system 32 folder that is contained inside the Windows folder in itself. This is a forbidden area and only for advanced users.
To find the system root you can simply type %SYSTEMROOT%\System32 into the start menu and the system 32 folder will show up.
#7. Quickly Access Your User Account
You might need to change your user password or maybe your profile picture. Well instead of going into the control panel, user accounts, then your account, you can simply double click on the user icon that is located on the start menu. Shown below.
This tips doesn’t apply to Windows 8.
#8. Pin a Program To The Start Menu
Pinning a program to the start menu is a great way to access it quickly and without hassle. all you have to do is find the program link in the start menu and right click on it, then choose pin to start menu. You can also pin to taskbar from here.
#9. Paste Text Into A DOS CMD Window
You know when you are following a tutorial and it requires you to use the Dos cmd, well no problem. No more manual typing the command, now you can simply right click and choose paste from the menu. In the old days we had to type every character exactly or there would be an error.
#10. Create a Rescue Boot Disc
This is an important computer tip that everyone should adhere to. Why wait for disaster with your computer and then scramble around wondering what to do? Go ahead and create a rescue boot disc and be prepared to repair your computer if needed. Don’t wait until the last minute to create a rescue disc when your computer already has a problem.
#11. SSD or HDD?
Nowdays there are two types of hard drives, the old magnetic type and the newer solid state hard drives. To perform maintenance on your hard drive you need to know if you have a SSD or a HDD? For example, a SSD does not need to be defragged and a magnetic hard drive does. To see if you which hard drive you have follow these steps:
1. Go to the start menu and choose computer.
2. Right click on the hard drive you want to investigate.
3. Choose properties from the menu.
4. Go to the hardware tab and you will see your hard drive there.
5. Get the model number and google it.
#12. Safe Mode Has Three Types
Often people get confused when they have to choose which safe mode to boot into. There is usually three different types.
Safe Mode: Normal safe mode with the least amount of drivers and applications loaded.
Safe Mode with Networking: Safe Mode with Networking allows you access to the internet, so that you can download any needed software or updates.
Safe Mode with Command Prompt: Safe Mode with Command Prompt is for advanced computer users who know how to run DOS commands.
#13. Sudden Shut-down of Computer
Do not turn off or restart your computer while the disk activity indicator light is on or flashes – you might cause severe damage to files on the disk! Sometimes this is out of your control though as you might lose power or a plug might come loose. Unplanned shut down can cause files errors, Windows errors and problem with your MBR on your hard drive.
#14. Computer Doesn’t Recognise Device
When you are installing a new device, most of the time you need to install a driver so the computer will recognise the device. Not all devices are plug and play so think about using an installation disc or downloading a driver before thinking that the device is not working. To troubleshoot a device you can go to device manager.
#15. Google It First
When you have a problem on your computer, investigate the error you are having first by googling it. Often the problems people have are so simple I could cry.
For example, with one day a lady bought her computer to me because she could not remember her password to login to Windows XP. Well if she had googled it like I did, she would have seen a tutorial that explains that you only have to press CTRL ALT DEL on the keyboard to bypass the password login section on Windows XP. The women practically had a heart attack when she saw me start the computer and press those three keys. I then press enter because she did not have an admin password.
After seeing this she told me how this wasn’t the first time she had had this same problem. She had taken the computer to a computer repair shop in the main street and had been charged $100 for this same problem. They had made it sound like an actual problem.
I used to repair computers and I have seen and heard about a lot of rip off’s so my advice is to Google it. At least when you take it to the computer repair shop you can suggest a few possible solutions that will make the computer repair person think you know something about computers.
#16. Trial Programs REALY Suck
When people buy a new computer, the salesperson usually loads up the computer with free trial software, making it sound like it is really valuable and essential for your computer use. At first it seems okay and the programs are usually pretty good, but then the trial runs out and they start to net you.
You see pop-ups asking you to buy their software every time you turn on your computer. So my advice is to not allow trial software on your computer in the first place. It is nothing but rubbish and a devious way to sell top branded software.
#17. Not All Computer Users Need A Paid Antivirus Program
okay here is the absolute truth! Not everyone needs to pay for an antivirus program. This is because not everyone is engaging in risky practices on their computer.
- know not to open attachments and click on links in e-mails
- do not visit unknown websites
- never download illegal software and movies
- never open or share files with anyone, even if you trust them
- do not let other people use your computer
- use your computer mostly for office work
- only really visit a few well-known websites
Then you probably do not need to buy an antivirus program. A free one will do. Check out my virus removal software article where I recommend Microsoft security essentials for the best free anti-virus program.
#18. A Restore Point Can Be Your Best Friend
People often forget about system restore. It is an awesome tool that can save you a hell of a lot of hassles. If you change your computer in any way, install a new program, or just mess with some settings you need to prepare for the “just in case”.
Now it is time to set a restore point on your computer. This is a safety precaution that will save you a lot of hassle if something does go wrong. System restore will allow you to restore your computer or take it back in time so it is essential when installing programs.
Nowadays most modern programs will set a restore point for you but we should not rely on this. See how to create a restore point in Windows seven.
#19. Access System Properties
Accessing system properties on any Windows Computer will have to be done sooner than later. It is where the settings are for your computer.
The easiest way to get to the system properties on all versions of Windows is to go to the start menu, right click on computer, and then choose properties.