Lincoln SpectorContributing Editor, PCWorld

Freelance journalist (and sometimes humorist) Lincoln Spector has been writing about tech longer than he would care to admit. A passionate cinephile, he also writes the Bayflicks.net movie blog.

Use third-party ink at your own risk

You may think you're saving money on ink by buying third-party supplies, but expect some hassles.

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Keep encrypted files encrypted when you back them up to the cloud

You keep selected files or folders encrypted on your internal drive. But are they protected when you use an online backup service?

A few good reasons to partition your SSD or hard drive

It's not something you'd do every day, like making and deleting file folders, but it can be helpful. Here's why.

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Does your computer have malware? Here are the telltale signs

Viruses, Trojans, and worms, oh, my! These symptoms are warning signs that you might have an infected PC.

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What you need to know about the cloud

We all talk about the cloud, and most of us use it. But some basic understanding can help you use it better.

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Windows 8 and Windows 7 Safe Modes: How to enter and when to use them

The old F8 trick no longer works with all PCs. Here are some alternate ways to enter Windows's clean, diagnostic Safe Mode

When to image a hard drive, and when to clone it

Imaging and cloning will both copy the contents of your drive, but the best way depends on whether you're upgrading or backing up. Here's when you should use each one.

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Personalize the Windows Explorer Navigation Bar

Want to find a favorite folder quickly? Here's how to configure your favorites and libraries in Windows 7 and 8's file managers.

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If Windows virtual memory is too low, you can increase it, but there are trade-offs

Virtual memory can expand your PC's capabilities, but it will also slow it down. Understanding the swap file will help you make the right decision.

Here's what to do when your touchscreen won't work

Your Windows 8 laptop has a touchscreen, but touching it doesn't have the desired effect. Here's what to do about it.

BadUSB: What you can do about undetectable malware on a flash drive

We've known for years that malware can spread via portable storage. But BadUSB shows that scanning the drive may not be sufficient.

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How to encrypt sensitive data? Put it in an encrypted container

We all have files that we'd rather not share with hackers and thieves (and maybe even our spouses). Here's how to put them in a place where no one else can open them.

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When your ethernet won't connect

A wired connection should be simple plug-and-play, but all too often that's not the case. Here's what to do if your ethernet connection seems dead.

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Review: Simple.TV 2 knows some great DVR tricks but also has flaws

This network DVR costs less to run than a TiVo Roamio OTA, but we had a few issues with its lack of Wi-Fi and its excessive fan noise.

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Windows autoloading programs: You don't want too many, but you may want these

Your PC probably autoloads too many programs at startup. You'd be wise to disable most of them. But here are some you should keep.