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How Do You Catch Your Computer's Unauthorized Internet Use? by Kelly Lynn

  If your computer's connection to the Internet seems to have slowed down lately, it's possible that it has malware that uses your bandwidth without your knowledge.  Finding out about any unauthorized Internet use should be easy enough with a third-party firewall. It should show you a list of all the applications on your computer that try to get on the Internet. Many well-designed malware applications have exceptions added that make it hard for firewalls to report them, though. There is another way to check If your firewall won't tell you much about clandestine attempts by malware on your computer to access the Internet, you could check by hand.  If your computer runs XP or a later version of Windows, the Windows netstat command in command prompt is what you need. To use the … Continue reading

What is Wi-Fi Direct? by Kelly Lynn

  Devices with Bluetooth are able to wirelessly connect directly to one another. They don't need to go through a central hub of any kind. This is not how it works with Wi-Fi, though. If you have two Wi-Fi-enabled laptops or phones, sending data from one to another is usually tedious. They both need to connect to a router, set up permissions and so on. Engineers have been hard at work trying to make Wi-Fi connections more Bluetooth-like. The result is Wi-Fi Direct -- a protocol that allows Wi-Fi-enabled devices to directly communicate with one another, with no need for a router in the middle. You may already use Wi-Fi Direct If you have a Roku set-top box, you already use Wi-Fi Direct. Unlike regular remote controls that use infrared … Continue reading

A Fun Thing About Notepad That You Probably Never Knew by Kelly Lynn

  When you open Notepad and begin typing into it, the text that appears only becomes a part of the file once you save it. Until then, all the content in the window is held in an area called the stream of the file. It's just the way the NTFS file system seen on modern Windows computers works. Normally, users don't have access to the stream content of their files . The content is simply there for the operating system to access. If you know how to access the stream area of a file, though, you could store entirely different matter in it than what appears in the main file. It would be a place that no one would know to look for -- your own secret area. Here's how you access … Continue reading

Does Idle RAM Do Any Good? by Kelly Lynn

  It's commonly heard advice: if you want a faster computer, you need to equip it with plenty of RAM. The more, the better, you're told. What if you were to put 8 GB of RAM in your computer, though, only to find that Task Manager never reported using any more than 4 GB, no matter what you did? Are the other 4 GB in your computer not contributing to your computing experience at all? Would you have exactly the same speed and performance if you took out the idle RAM? How Windows uses RAM RAM that Task Manager shows as idle does not help at all with programs and tasks that are CPU-intensive. Only RAM that's shown as in use actually helps. Excess RAM, though, can help speed up … Continue reading

Tips to Help You Make the Most of Dropbox by Kelly Lynn

  Tips To Help You Make the Most of Dropbox Dropbox, the cloud file backup service, evolves and brings in new features all the time. Its iOS and Android apps are among the most popular ones on those platforms. If you use Dropbox, here are some of the best ways to get the most out of the latest version. Get extra free space without paying for it Dropbox assigns 2 GB of space to every free account. If you would like more free space, you have three options. To begin, you get 125 MB of extra space each time you go on Twitter to say something nice about Dropbox. Referring a friend to Dropbox can be a good way to earn some free space, too -- you get an extra … Continue reading

The Most Powerful Ways to Use Command Prompt by Kelly Lynn

  Command prompt in Windows isn't easy to use, the way the graphical user interface is. It's a throwback to the time you needed to remember arcane commands for everything that you needed your computer to do. Yet, it can be a useful tool. There are a few things that are best done from within command prompt. The following are some of the best ways to use command prompt. If you are ever in doubt about what exactly a command does, you simply need to type it in at the command prompt, followed by the string /? before you hit Enter . Right away, you get access to the built-in help file that shows you what the command does. Most of these commands work only when you run command prompt … Continue reading