Internet access is a glorious thing—except for when it isn't. Sometimes it's an easy fix if you know how to solve Wi-Fi router problems, and other times the issue isn't so obvious, especially if it looks like your favorite site went down and took half the web with it.
If you need to figure out if a particular site is up and running or if the problem begins and ends with you, here's how.
Every now and then something breaks on your computer. Maybe you get a bad system update from Microsoft or cosmic rays flip the wrong bit on your system. Whatever the cause, often your problem has nothing to do with hardware, but lies within the software powering it, instead.
This recently happened to me when a USB 3.0 port on my system suddenly stopped working. I wasn't sure how it happened, and when I looked into the problem Windows displayed its infamous "error code 43." Luckily, this problem can often be fixed in just a few clicks. Try this out before freaking out if one of your PC components suddenly stops working.
Advertising companies aren’t just tracking your web browsing habits—some marketers secretly monitor your email usage to discover a startling amount of information about you, too.
While senders are limited to only tracking specific messages they’ve sent to you, doing so can reveal whether you’ve opened the email or clicked any links in the message. It can also expose your general location and what kind of device you’re using.
If you’re curious about which messages are monitoring you and which one’s aren’t, a new extension for Chrome called UglyEmail can help. This extension—by developer Sonny Tulyaganov—monitors your inbox to find messages using pixel tracking. This is a common marketing technique where companies insert a transparent (and therefore invisible to you) one-pixel image into a message.
Most social networks have a mechanism that makes it easy to export all your status updates and photos, but figuring out how to do it isn't always simple. Plus you have to go through each social network one at a time.
If you're looking for an easier way to get most of your data out of the social networks check out SocialSafe. This desktop program is designed to back up your social data on your own PC and even lets you lock down your data with a password.
Recently, I switched to Firefox after Chrome became unresponsive and buggy one too many times. Switching between browsers never used to be a big deal, but that's just not the case anymore. We customize these programs with extensions, sync open tabs to our mobile devices, and, if you're using Chrome, run apps like they're native to the desktop.
If you're thinking about moving between browsers here are three things to consider as you plan your move.
Evernote is an incredibly useful service for storing notes and clipped items from the web, thanks to its powerful search function and helpful tag system that puts all your saved data at your fingertips.
But did you know you can also turn it into a read-it-later service by clipping articles on your PC and stashing them in a reader-friendly view in Evernote?
Saving articles in Evernote doesn't quite rise to the level of a service like Pocket or Instapaper. But for anyone that wants to keep as much data as possible in one place, Evernote is a great choice.
One of the pains of owning a PC that's getting towards the end of its life is dealing with the ever-shrinking amount of storage as your PC fills up with music, photos, and documents. In the end, the only way to battle the bloat is often to get a new PC or more storage—but until you do, there are a number of tricks you can employ to make space on your PC.
A particularly handy one is to eliminate duplicate files and folders on your hard drive, getting rid of superfluous data you don't need. You'd be surprised how much content ends up duplicated on your PC thanks to a sync gone wrong with iTunes or an errant click with the photo importer.
Here are three tools that can help you reduce the clutter on your system.