Category: Computer Tips

The Grinch is after Google IDs

Got an interesting — and very authentic looking — email this morning that purported to be from Google. All I had to do was click on their link and log-in to “fix” problems with my Google ID. Hah! The funny thing is the email purported to have something to do with the “European Commission’s eID service Regulation (EU) N°910/2014 that requires us ‘Google Inc’ to inspect the authenticity of Google members in Europe.” Sorry, but I’m not in Europe. This …

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Think Before You Click this Holiday Season

There’s a lot going on in the holiday season, and thieves and scammers like to take advantage of us when we’re not paying close attention. I received an email the other day that looked like it was from PayPal. Thank goodness I knew better than to click on any link in an email from a financial institution. If you look at the image, you can see one quick technique I use to check before I click on a link in …

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Getting started with OneNote

There’s a rush to move everything digital, and that includes that notebook you carry around to all of your meetings. Microsoft’s digital answer is the powerful program OneNote. I’m going to admit up front that there is a learning curve to using OneNote. No, that’s not true–the program is super easy. It’s getting users to drop the pen and pickup the pad or laptop that has been the problem. You have to get accustomed to using a digital notebook before …

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Control Z: Your new best friend

Everybody has them, those one or two shortcuts that they absolutely could not live without. For me, it is the Ctrl + Z keyboard shortcut for “Undo.” It is the magic eraser of the computer, and will allow you to undo up to the last 25 actions you have taken while the document is open. That’s right, you can just magically go back in time by holding down the Control key and tapping the letter Z key! Best of all, …

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When disaster strikes… or it’s a Monday

I often tell students that there is no greater teacher than experience…. You can learn from mine, or you can go get some of your own. And today’s tip is no exception to that. I came into the office today only to find that my main production computer would not work. It’s Monday morning, so I pulled out a few of my quick-fix routines and they all tell me the same thing: your hard drive is dead, reformat it and …

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The Demise of the Home Button

This is a quick one for a Friday afternoon, but have you ever noticed how many websites are doing away with the home button? CDAComputer.Tips is still using a home button as of this writing, but the sister site CDAComputer.Training is not. The fact is that web designers have been making the company logo a link to the home page for so long, that most savvy users have caught on. Believe it or not, those wily designers have been tracking …

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What’s “the Cloud” and should I be using it?

If you own a computer, you’ve probably heard someone talking about “the Cloud.” There are lots of Cloud services out there, including iCloud, DropBox, OneDrive, Google Drive and Amazon Cloud. And sales people at the big box electronic stores are pushing them all, plus one they claim can live in your home. The funny thing is, you’re probably already using the Cloud, whether you know it or not. So, what is the Cloud? In a simple world, the Cloud is …

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Strange internet addresses… what do they mean?

You may have noticed lately that the internet is humming with all kinds of new internet addresses. For example, this blog’s web address ends in .tips instead of .com. (Don’t worry, if you’ve been going to I set things up so that it would forward you to the right place.) These new address endings are called gTLDs (General Top Level Domains), and refer to the extension at the end of a web address. In addition to the .tips, my …

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Zipping and Un-Zipping Files

It seems inevitable that our files sizes are growing larger while our computer software is growing more complex. Remember the days of floppy disks that were 500K? Nowadays we are seeing hard drives that hold terabytes of information and thumb drives that hold gigabytes. The real genius will the one who solves the problem of making computer files smaller while keeping the software advanced. To help you handle large file sizes, we have something called a .ZIP archive. You can …

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