Category Archives: Windows

How to use your Windows Laptop as a second display

Windows 10 is full of surprises – one of which is its built-in capability to extend a monitor onto a second Windows device via WiFi. It’s called Windows Screen Projection I believe, a technology that also allows us to use remote displays like projectors without using any wires.

It’s basically like Apple’s AirPlay technology, or Avatron’s Air-Display, which works from Windows or macOS to an iOS device, or Duet Display, which works with a wired connection to an iOS device – except that it’s built right into Windows 10.

Here’s how to set it up.

Continue reading How to use your Windows Laptop as a second display

How to create a screenshot on Windows (shortcut)

I’m primarily a Mac user and find the convenience of the CMD + SHIFT + 4 shortcut an invaluable tool to write documentation. Sometimes I do need to write on my Windows system though, and my mind simply keeps forgetting how to create convenient shortcuts there with the same convenience. I usually end up searching for the Snipping Tool, followed by getting frustrated with it.

Before I forget again, here’s how to take a screenshot on Windows using a shortcut (or in true Windows fashion, several shortcuts).

WIN + SHIFT + S (Partial Screenshot)

The Windows + SHIFT + S shortcut will grey out the screen and lets you draw a rectangle of whatever you’d like to capture. The resulting screenshot is copied to memory. Hit Edit – Paste or CTRL + V to paste it into other documents.

PrntScn Key (Full Screenshot)

Every Windows keyboard has a PrintScreen key hidden somwhere. It’s often labelled PrntScn or something similar, either accessible on its own or via a Functions Key. Hunt for it somewhere near the number block on the right hand side of your keyboard. Pressing that key will take a screenshot of the full display and copy it into memory.

ALT + PrntScn (Active Window Screenshot)

A variation on the above full-screen capture is the addition of the ALT key. When pressed together with the suprious PrntScn key, Windows will capture the currently active window and copy it into memory, complete with status bar (but without those slightly annoying shadows around it).

Thanks to HowToGeek for these tips. PS: That link contains about 147 other suggestions on how to take screenshots on Windows.

Handy Tip for WordPress Users

When you paste a screenshot with any of the above options into WordPress, the system is clever enough to upload the file to your server in the background. Now that’s handy!

How to transfer files from your GoPro to your computer via WiFi

There is an iOS and Android App available to transfer files directly from a GoPro camera to a mobile device. Those apps transcode files and compress them for easier viewing, and to save storage space.

While that approach gets footage onto my iPhone, I still need to transfer the files to my Mac for editing. Plus, there’s an additional compression step involved which can’t be good for picture quality. Besides, it takes forever to do its job.

A much more useful approach would be to hook directly into the GoPro and transfer files that way. This leaves the SD card place and doesn’t disturb the (sometimes hard to reach or difficult to recreate) position of the camera.

Here’s how to do it.

Continue reading How to transfer files from your GoPro to your computer via WiFi

Thoughts on Windows 10 Upgrade Error 0xc190020e

My first generation Surface Pro only has 64GB of space, roughly 20 of which I’m allowed to use (the rest of it is kind of forever “lost in cyberspace” – or so it seems). It’s been running all Windows 10 updates fine until a few months ago, when Windows kept bugging me that the latest security patches needed to be installed.

I was happily running Version 1703 up to that point and never had an issue with space limitations or deferring updates. Until early 2018, when Microsoft started  aggressively forcing the Fall Creator’s Update down my throat.  Continue reading Thoughts on Windows 10 Upgrade Error 0xc190020e

How to shutdown Windows 10 without applying updates

Although most of Windows 10 keeps getting better with every iteration, some things just never change. Windows Updates are one of those. They always want to download and install when we really don’t have the time or the battery power.

What’s worst, Microsoft have removed the graphical option to simply shutdown the system – and all we’re left with are two choices: “Update and shutdown”, or “Update and restart”.

What if all we want to do is to shutdown or restart WITHOUT applying those updates? Perhaps we’re out and about, running on an already near-depleted battery? Or we’re in a hurry and would like to leave the update for when we have more time, or a power outlet?

Fear not, there is a way to do these things – even if they don’t come up in the Start menu anymore.

Continue reading How to shutdown Windows 10 without applying updates

Format a Linux system drive on Windows

The other day I tried to format a USB drive for use with Windows. I had previously tried this on my Mac to no avail. But now even Windows was telling me that it too could not format my drive.

I was stumped! I had in fact never seen anything like it before. Was that USB drive broken? Had I turned stupid overnight? Well perhaps… but more importantly, it dawned on me what I had used this USB drive prior to this formatting nightmare: it was a Linux installation that could run directly from the stick.

This is important, because as part of the installation, a protected EFI system partition is installed. This is used for booting if I understand correctly, and hence rather important. So important in fact that the ordinary user tools in both macOS and Windows do not allow us users (even Administrators) to erase such partitions.

Lucky for us, the friendly folks at WinAbility have provided a detailed guide on how to remove such a protected partition on Windows. Enjoy the article!

What’s the difference between the Logitech M325 and the M325c

The Logitech M325 and M325c are both wireless USB mice. Their design appears to be identical (except for the many different colourful variations of course), and their prices vary from anything between $12 and $60 – depending the layout and seller. Even the packaging is identical.

So what’s the difference between these two models? Is it precision? Is it the build quality? Is it the year of production? Is it something else?

Actually no, the two mice are absolutely identical and both work with Windows, macOS and Linux. The only difference is in the wireless receiver that Logitech give you with each model.

The difference is the wireless receiver

The M325 comes with a Logitech Unifying Receiver. You can tell by the little “sunshine” logo on the side. This type of receiver allows us to use the Logitech Unifying Software to operate several devices over a single receiver (say a mouse and a keyboard). It’s a little clunky to setup more than one device, but it certainly saves valuable USB slots on your machine.

Note that for this to work, all decides must be Logitech unifying devices, and all must display that little sunshine logo.

The M325c on the other hand does NOT come with a unifying receiver, and instead comes with a standard USB receiver. Only this one device will work with said receiver. As you can imagine, the receiver does not bear the unifying logo on the side. Therefore you may find the M325c a little cheaper than the M325.

Note however that the M325c mouse itself IS a unifying device, and it DOES bear the unifying logo on the underside. Hence you can use the M325c mouse with another unifying receiver just fine.

So there you have it – that’s the big secret difference between these two mice. I have both, and I couldn’t tell the difference at first. The mice are identical, just the USB receiver is a little different. Just in case this question was driving you crazy too 🙂

How to check which web server is running on a domain

Sometimes we must know what web server is running on a particular domain. Usually web hosts should be able to tell a client this, but if the client is afraid to ask, there is a way to ask the web server directly for this information.

Just to clarify: the web server is the process that serves files (HTML, PHP, ASP, images, etc) from a remote machine to your local web browser. The most likely choices in this day and age (2017) are Apache, NGINX or IIS. The latter is used by Windows servers, and the two former are used by Linux servers. There are other web servers too, such as lighttpd, but they’re used less commonly.

By asking the web server for this information, we can tell exactly who’s serving those files.

How to ask the Web Server

Let’s open a Terminal or Command Line Prompt window and utilise the good old fashioned Telnet protocol. Replace yourserver.com with the actual domain in question: Continue reading How to check which web server is running on a domain

How to fix “connected to WiFi, but can’t see the Internet” on Windows 10

For the last few days I had a very interesting (read: ultra annoying) issue with Windows 10 on my Surface Pro. No matter which network I was connecting to, I could never see the internet anymore.

Logic dictates that there was perhaps an issue with the router, but since it happened on other networks as well, this couldn’t have been the case. I could even ping the router, but no matter what else I tried, Windows didn’t see the internet.

Finally I came across this Microsoft Support Article that suggested several things, among whose suggestions were to reset the TCP/IP stack and to renew the IP address. Sounds like fun I thought and went to work.

Here’s how I could solve my internet issues:

Continue reading How to fix “connected to WiFi, but can’t see the Internet” on Windows 10