Category Archives: Computer Repair

Microsoft Paint Upgrade

Microsoft Paint is one of the most popular programs of Windows. And though while back in 2017 it was announced that Paint was getting removed, Microsoft reverted back to keeping it. Users were incredibly happy with the news.

In April, Microsoft announced their depletion of the deprecation warning message each time you run the application. On May 14th, MSPaint announced new features to its’ program in the Windows 10 update.

Brandon LeBlanc, Senior Program Manager, wrote a post on behalf of the MSPaint team. He writes, “We’ve introduced the keyboard as a primary input mechanism. Microsoft Paint is already fully functional with mouse and multi-touch tablet input, but customers will now be able to use the app and draw with only their keyboard.”

image source: insider.windows.com

Brandon added, “Along with full keyboard input support, we’ve made improvements to the way Paint interacts with Screen Readers, like Windows Narrator, which some users might find improves their overall experience with the app.”

So not only did they NOT get rid of Paint, they gave it a bit of an enhancement. Oh, happy day!

(source: https://insider.windows.com/en-us/articles/new-microsoft-paint-accessibility-features/)

Insider Dev Tour 2019

Yesterday, Windows announced their Insider Dev Tour for 2019, which comes in right after the Microsoft Build Developer Conference that took place earlier this month in Seattle, Washington. In the blog post, they share multiple regions that are included, along with basic agendas for the tour:

“Agenda varies by location, but you can expect to find developer demo-focused practical sessions with topics such as:

  • Introduction to Microsoft Graph Services
  • Web Development with NodeJS and Microsoft Developer Tools
  • Embedded and IoT Solutions with Microsoft Windows IoT Core
  • Command Line / Terminal and Windows Subsystem for Linux
  • Coding your Future with the Windows Insider Program
  • Desktop Apps with the Microsoft Graph
  • UWP User Interfaces with the latest APIS and OSS libraries
  • Developing with the New Edge Browser
  • Desktop Apps with .NET Core
  • AI Platform / Machine Learning on Windows
  • Progressive Web Apps with the New Edge
  • NET Core 3.0
  • Build apps for Microsoft Teams with Microsoft Graph and Web Technology

The day will start, of course, with a great keynote that covers the best from Microsoft Build.”

Locations are being updated over the next week, so keep an eye out to see if one is near you. If registration is not available immediately, check back on the Windows Blog for updates.

(source:
https://blogs.windows.com/buildingapps/2019/05/16/announcing-the-insider-dev-tour-2019/ )

If you need computer repair, computer service or have any technology problem, Karls Technology can fix it. We have been performing computer repair full time since 1999. Feel free to give us a call at 1-800-620-5285 or send a text to us at (602) 633-4584.

Get the Most out of your Windows Shortcuts

Computers have evolved so much in the past several decades, and it still continues to improve to this day. You have the world at your fingertips. With the ability to search the internet for any and all questions, converse with anyone in the world, acquire all forms of jobs, the possibilities are endless with this wonderful piece of technology. And when you own one, you want to get the most out of it. Here are just a few Windows shortcuts that make life just a little bit easier:

If you are surfing the web and by a mere fluke, your mouse exits out of a tab you were needing. It can be frustrating, indeed, but CTRL + SHIFT + T will bring back the tab you accidentally closed. All is well again.

Extensions on your browsers are one of the best forms of utilization. Use 1Password to save all of the passwords in one place. You’ll even have to have a password for this Chrome extension. AdBlockPro is also a great one to avoid pesky ads. Check out more available entrepreneur-related extensions here:
https://www.fundera.com/blog/chrome-extensions

Snip And Sketch is a keyboard shortcut, allowing you to highlight what you want to save in the Print Screenshot Mode. START MENU ICON + SHIFT + S will start it. Then open the Paint application, right click, and paste. Voilà!

And speaking of “voilà”, you too can find the proper letters for foreign words (shown above). Look up the Character Map in the START MENU for foreign letters or symbols. It will also give you the keystroke: ALT+Numberpad on the bottom right corner of its window for quicker access. For example, the à is “ALT+0228“.

Open the Task Manager by clicking CTRL + ALT + DELETE. There, it can provide you with information on your memory, performance, open applications, etc.

Would you like to view information about your computer? To get right to it, go your System Settings by using the START MENU + PAUSE-BREAK shortcut.

Done with work for the day? Quickly lock your computer down with START MENU + L. This will automatically revert back to the “sign-in” screen.

If you have any questions about getting the most out of your computer, call us at 1-800-620-5285. We can help! Karls Technology is a nationwide computer service company with offices in many major cities.

Windows 10 Updates

After Windows released a feature update back in October 2018, a new one was scheduled for May. Some may have already updated their computer, but just in case you haven’t, you can learn a few things about it. Windows 10 includes a wide variety of improvements and adjustments to the operating system. Here are a few things on what you need to look out for with this update.

First, If you are part of the Windows Insiders Program, you can update your computer before anyone else does – great for future reference. If you’d like to sign up, register here: https://insider.windows.com/en-us/register/, accept the terms and you’ll receive a Welcome E-mail. Be sure to read the Important Notice before agreeing to join, as it adds a variety of risks to your computer.

Second, huge bonus for Android phone users: You can send texts and see photos from your computer. You can also install Microsoft Launcher on your phone and search and sync your calendar and other documents.

Third, you may not be able to update if you have an SD memory card or external USB. According to the Microsoft Support Website: “An external USB device or SD memory card that is attached to the computer could cause inappropriate drive reassignment on Windows 10-based computers during the installation of the May 2019 update. For this reason, these computers are currently blocked from receiving the May 2019 Update. This generates the error message that is mentioned in the “Symptoms” section if the upgrade is tried again on an affected computer.”“To work around this issue, remove all external media, such as USB devices and SD cards, from the computer. Then,restart the May 2019 Update installation.” (source: https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/4500988/windows-update-blocked-for-windows-10-insider-program)

Last, but not least, this update requires 32GB of storage on your computer – up from 16GB for 32-bit and 64-bit. If you don’t have the storage, you will not be able to update.

If you ever have an issue with the Windows 10 update and would like to have a professional computer service company consult with you, call us at 1-800-620-5285.  Karls Technology is a nationwide computer service company with offices in many major cities.

Free Up Hard Drive Space

No one enjoys their computer running slower than usual. It’s a nuisance, especially if you use it for business. But there are plenty of ways to speed up your computer simply by freeing up your hard drive space.

Check how your Storage Usage is being handled under the Settings tab, to System, and then Storage. You can then click on which drive is running out of space. This will show you a breakdown of what it all contains, and you can click on each items listed to give you more detail. That way, you will be able to clear up any hard drive space by deleting unnecessary files.
Also, use Storage Sense to free up files. This feature will automatically delete files. You can also make this a manual option by clicking on “Change how we free up space automatically”, and under “Free up space now” click Clean Now.

Don’t forget to use Disk Cleanup. Search for Disk Cleanup when you click on the Start menu (Windows Icon). Deleting temporary internet files, downloads, and Recycling Bin in the Cleanup is one of the easiest ways to free up space on your Hard Drive.

You can find other ways to help alleviate issues with your hard drive by checking out Windows Central.

If you ever have an issue with your computer running slow and would like to have a professional computer service company consult with you, call us at 1-800-620-5285.  Karls Technology is a nationwide computer service company with offices in many major cities.

The Blue Screen of Death

The Blue Screen of Death, or BSOD for short, is a detrimental error due to flawed hardware or crashing software on a Microsoft Windows computer. And it shows up on your monitor as a – yep, you guessed it – blue screen. Too often, users have no knowledge of why or how this happens or what to do next. But there are ways to troubleshoot this specific problem.

Restarting

Depending on which version of Windows you have currently installed on your computer will determine what form of error information will show up. Windows 8 and 10’s is less complicated than 7 and under, which include a handful of steps to handle the situation. Windows OS has a default restart automatically setting in the case of a system failure.

If you’d rather it not restart, follow these steps to do so:

  1. Control Panel —–System and Security
  2. Click on System
  3. Go to Advanced System Settings
  4. Advanced Tab —–Startup and Recovery
  5. Click on Settings

From there, you’ll see the System Failure block. The “Automatically Restart” box is checked. Disable it by simply un-checking the box. You’ll also notice the Dump File, which contains information about the crash to identify, and possibly fix the issue. When your computer restarts, Windows 8 and 10 will perform a troubleshooting step automatically after a BSOD. This step will inspect your computer’s unresolved problems for results. You can also observe this option in the Action Center of your Control Panel and run a test to look out for available fixes.

Search Online

When you get a BSOD, there may also be a code shown for you to search on the web to get information for that specific error. This can be a quick and easy way to troubleshoot your computer and get it fixed right away.

If you ever have an issue with the Blue Screen of Death and would like to have a professional computer service company consult with you, call us at 1-800-620-5285.  Karls Technology is a nationwide computer service company with offices in many major cities.

Watch out for Tech Support Scammers

Scammers are in just about every kind of industry, and tech support is no different. Often times, you may visit a website and find a pop-up error that includes a phone number to call for support to “fix the issue”. But that is certainly not their intention. With new technology, fraudulent tech support often seems real to those who are inexperienced users, requesting them to download content that allows them access to the users’ computer.

Microsoft released a support post on their blog, saying, “Microsoft does not send unsolicited email messages or make unsolicited phone calls to request personal or financial information, or to provide technical support to fix your computer.” They also add that, “Any communication with Microsoft has to be initiated by you.”Scammers have the ability to make upwards to $500 each phone call that is made. Don’t fall victim to their schemes. You can protect your computer and file reports against scammers to Microsoft. There’s also a list of fraudulent numbers, websites, and other forms of scammers on their website.

Source: https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/4013405/windows-protect-from-tech-support-scams

New Chromebooks run Linux

Google just announced at their Google I/O event something amazing. Starting immediately, all new Chromebooks will include Linux and ChromeOS.

Even though Chrome OS is based on Linux, it is not a native Linux desktop environment. Chrome OS started as a fork of Ubuntu Linux. Later on Google forked Gentoo Linux and that is their current kernel base.

I thought we had Linux previously?

Last year, Google released a way to run desktop Linux within Chrome OS. There have also been methods for years to run different Linux distros with Crouton in a chroot container. But this is different, Linux will now come pre-installed and ready to launch with any new Chromebook.

What does Linux bring to Chromebooks?

Allowing Chrome OS to natively run Linux applications means more things you can do on your Chromebook. You will be able to run Linux applications directly from Chrome OS. Linux applications will now become like any other Android or Chrome OS application.

Previously, your inexpensive Chromebook that was limited to Web applications, now it can be a full fledged power house laptop. Almost any application available for Windows or MacOS have an equivalent Linux application.

Which Linux distros will be supported?

Google has already said Debian Stretch is going to be the first Linux distro. You can already get a near production version of this out. Subscribe to the Beta or Dev channel release of Chrome OS for the PixelBook and you can play with this new feature.

Google says security will still stay at the forefront of Chrome OS. Chrome OS uses Linux’s kernel based VM. All Linux distros will run in VM sandboxes. This will block Linux applications from accessing or controlling your chromebook. This means you can now use your Chromebook for more serious use like software development or security testing.

The mainstream Chrome OS release channel should support Linux distros by end of July 2019. You can switch to the Beta or Dev release channel if you would like to experience this today. You can expect to be using Linux applications some time soon!

For help with your Chromebook or any other Linux computer issues, call us at 1-800-620-5285.  Karls Technology is a nationwide computer service company with offices in many major cities. This blog post was brought to you from our staff at the Phoenix Computer Repair Service, if you need computer repair in Phoenix, AZ please call the local office at (602) 445-9862.

Maintain Your Laptops’ Battery Life

A standard laptop battery lasts about 2-4 years brand new, or around 1,000 charges depending on a handful of components. And not to mention, they can be a bit expensive, ranging in the $100-$150 range. With advanced software and more powerful batteries, your laptop can, and will, last longer. Educating yourself on these basic tips can help extend the life of your PC battery and keep money in your pocket.

-When you don’t need the internet or any other wireless connections, turn on Airplane Mode.

-Turn off what you are not currently using, including Bluetooth and other apps that may still be open in your background.

-Try out Microsoft Edge. It supports 1080p resolution and was made to be faster and saves your battery life. According to the Microsoft website, “Tests show that when browsing with Microsoft Edge, your battery lasts 36-53% longer per charge” than other browsers.

-Dim your screen by clicking Start and going to Settings, then Display. Under Brightness and Color, slide the brightness to dim it down a bit.

-Check your Battery Overview in the Settings tab as well to see which apps are affecting the life of your battery. You can also turn your Battery Saver on when the battery hits a certain percentage.

(Source: https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/20443/windows-10-battery-saving-tips)

Can Your Smartphone Get Hacked?

In short, yes. Many people assume it’s only your computer. However, through fraudulent messaging clients, hackers can access data, location, photos and more from your personal or business mobile phones, invading your privacy. And there are a handful of ways they can get sneaky.

According to EFF.org, “The trojanized apps, including Signal and WhatsApp, function like the legitimate apps and send and receive messages normally. However, the fake apps also allow the attackers to take photos, retrieve location information, capture audio, and more.” (source: https://www.eff.org/press/releases/eff-and-lookout-uncover-new-malware-espionage-campaign-infecting-thousands-around)

Along with fake apps, you can also receive text messages, e-mails, and instant messages with web links from an unknown source. This technique is called phishing messages and can allow hackers to acquire any login information you may have saved on your phone.  

If you notice an open WIFI when choosing a network, you might also be at risk of your phone being hacked. Unsecured WIFI networks can sometimes have snoopers behind the scenes, waiting for users to join and surf the web or log in to highly sensitive (or personal) accounts. This gives them ample opportunity to steal anything they want. Keep an eye out for URLs with unsecured vs secured connections (http: VS https:).

You can protect yourself from these, and other possible risks, by creating strong passwords, using two-factor authentication and setting up security questions for your passwords. Be sure to play it safe with any and all personal information you add to your phone.