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Tips & Tricks October 2017

Here you will find interesting items on a multitude of topics. A new entry will be posted weekly, if there is a topic you're interested in, please use the contact us form to let us know.
How to Customize Your Computer Keyboard
Written by: Lance Whitney (PCMag)
Ever want to tweak your physical keyboard to change the function of certain keys or use them to type out special characters? All you need is a keyboard utility, or key remapper.

For example, you may remap one key to type out a foreign-language character, or you may alter what certain keys can do when combined with other keys. You can perform these feats courtesy of a free Microsoft utility called the Microsoft Keyboard Layout Creator (MKLC). This software doesn't officially support client versions of Windows beyond Vista. However, I was able to get it to perform just fine in Windows 10. Here's how it works:

With MKLC, you can build a new keyboard layout from scratch or modify an existing one based on layouts for English and other languages. Download it from the Microsoft Download Center. Run the downloaded MSKLC.exe file to install the software and then open the application via its Start menu shortcut.

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Windows 10's "Controlled Folder Access" Anti-Ransomware Feature Is Now Live
Written by: Catalin Cimpanu (BLEEPINGCOMPUTER)
With the release of Windows 10 Fall Creators Update last week, the "Controlled Folder Access" that Microsoft touted in June is now live for millions of users.

As the name hints, the Controlled Folder Access feature allows users to control who can access certain folders.

The feature works on a "block everything by default" philosophy, which means that on a theoretical level, it would be able to prevent ransomware when it tries to access and encrypt files stored in those folders.

The benefits of using Controlled Folder Access for your home and work computers are tangible for anyone that's fearful of losing crucial files to a ransomware infection.

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How to Convert PDFs to Word Documents
Written by: Eric Griffith (PCMag)
The PDF (Portable Document Format) is the open standard, created by Adobe in the 1990s, for presenting documents so they look consistent across all platforms and software. DOC (or DOCX) is the format/file extension used mainly by Microsoft Word for its word processing documents. The two aren't anywhere near compatible. You can't open a DOC file with Adobe Reader (or any other free PDF reader like FoxIt and Sumatra).

But, in answer to the often-made query "How do I convert PDFs to Word format" -which really means, "How do I edit a PDF in Word" -the answer these days is easy. Just open the PDF in Word.

As of Word 2013 (released in 2012), Microsoft has offered a function called PDF Reflow. It does what you expect. In Word, you go to the File tab, select open, select any PDF File, and open it right up for editing, as if it was a Word DOCX file.

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How to Stop Spam
Written by: Contributor (wikiHow)
Spam has become a constant fixture in our online lives. While it's easy to gloss over spam in your inbox, accidentally clicking a spam link can lead to a virus infection and identity theft. Fight back against spammers by actively blocking spam you receive; doing so will also help prevent future spam. Your inbox will thank you. The following tutorial provides step-by-step tips on how to stop unwanted emails.

Check who it's from. Nearly all the time, spam comes from an unrecognized sender, often with odd email addresses. That doesn't mean all unrecognized email is spam. Legitimate newsletters, website administration emails (password resets, authentication requests, etc.), and more may come from addresses you don't recognize.

Look for links. Only click links from trusted senders. The entire purpose of spam is to get you to click a link. If an email contains a link and you don't recognize the sender, chances are it is spam. Hover your mouse over any link to see the destination in your browser or email client's status bar.

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April 2017 entries can be found here.
May 2017 entries can be found here.
June 2017 entries can be found here.
July 2017 entries can be found here.
August 2017 entries can be found here.
September 2017 entries can be found here.
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