Whether you are new to computers or have been using them for years, there are always things to learn. These 10 tech tips can help you get the most out of your computer!
These simple tricks can save you time and effort. They are easy to implement and will quickly become second nature!
1. Set Up a Wi-Fi Router
Wi-Fi is a popular networking technology that allows devices to connect to a wireless network. This includes smartphones, tablets, and laptops.
Some routers come with a mobile app that makes this process easier, but most standard routers have a web interface you can use from any device. To log in to the router, you’ll need a username and password, which are usually provided in the router’s documentation.
Once you’ve logged in, go to the Wireless Settings section and set up your SSID (service set identifier) and security. The SSID is the name your router broadcasts to nearby devices, and it helps users find you on their lists of available networks.
Next, go to the Wireless Security Mode setting and choose a Wi-Fi security protocol, such as WPA2. This will help keep your router from being accessible by other people. The older WEP encryption is not secure, so make sure to use one of the newer options.
2. Install a VPN
A VPN replaces your IP address and encrypts all your traffic and information. This allows you to bypass blocked websites and download files without letting your ISP know where you’re coming from.
Depending on your needs, you may want to install a VPN on a computer, phone or tablet. Generally, this involves downloading the software from the VPN provider’s website and following their instructions to install it.
Once it’s installed, you can launch the client and log in to your account. Most VPN services will ask you to create a username and password, but some may automatically generate them.
3. Install a Firewall
Firewalls protect your computer from cyber threats like malware and trojans. They monitor incoming and outgoing traffic and allow only what you allow.
When a firewall sees something it doesn’t like, it asks you for permission. You can either let it through or block it based on your judgment and the instructions that come with the alert.
Most computers have a firewall built into them, but you can also get hardware firewalls that sit between your router and your network. They are more difficult to set up than software firewalls, but can give you better protection.
Next, you need to configure firewall rules called access control lists (ACLs). ACLs are used to filter traffic based on a specific rule and can include “Deny All.” After configuring ACLs, you need to test your firewall to ensure it is blocking the type of traffic that you want it to block.
4. Set Up a Printer
A printer is a useful device that you can use to print documents, images, and other materials. There are several different types of printers, including desktop laser printers, multifunction devices (MFDs), and inkjet printers.
Some printers are connected to a computer using a USB cable, while others connect to a network. Regardless of how your printer is connected to the computer, it must be installed and set up in order to work.
When you add a new printer, macOS usually automatically detects any special accessories, such as extra paper trays or memory, and shows you a dialog that lets you specify them. If it doesn’t, the installer prompts you to download software that can help.
To install a printer, open the Settings app from the Start menu. Click the Add a printer or scanner icon.
5. Set Up a Remote Desktop
Setting up a remote desktop is an important part of ensuring that you have access to any PC on your local network or in the cloud. This is especially useful in the IT industry, where it can prove crucial to keep resources and documents spread out across multiple devices.
You can use the Remote Desktop Connection app on Windows to connect to a PC, either on the same local network or remotely from another computer. To do this, type the name of the PC you noted in Step 1 into the Remote Desktop Connection search box on the taskbar and click Connect.
To set up a remote desktop, you need to have the correct username and password for the account on the remote PC. You can do this by using the username and password for the Microsoft account associated with the remote PC, or for the account of a person with administrative rights.
6. Set Up a Calendar
Frustrating as it is to flick between tabs or windows, there are some techie tricks you can try out to improve your productivity levels. One such trick is to set up a calendar. It’s easy to do, even if you’re not tech savvy. In addition to the standard weekly and monthly calendars, Google Calendar allows you to display a variety of other items like holidays, sports and TV shows.
You can even repurpose the calendar by converting it into a smart phone app. It’s a smart way to stay in sync with your team members and keep everyone in the loop. In the end, you’ll be able to spend more time focusing on work instead of juggling multiple screens. So go ahead and give it a whirl.
7. Set Up a Contacts List
A contacts list is a convenient way to group email addresses and other information into one easy-to-find place. It’s particularly useful on mobile devices, as it can save you time by letting you send emails to specific groups of people with just a tap.
Contacts lists also make it easier to access your phone’s built-in assistant, which can help you make video calls and send money with a single tap. You can even add a contact’s card to your home screen, which makes it quicker and easier to find them.
If you haven’t already, you can easily set up a contacts list on your iPhone running iOS 16. It’s a great feature that should be available to all iPhone users soon, so check to see if yours is compatible and start using it.
8. Set Up a Notepad
If you want to write some basic computer programs, a text editor such as Notepad is a great place to start. It comes pre-installed on Windows computers and can be used to create batch files that run scripts in the Command Prompt or to write lines of code.
One of the best features in Notepad is that it has a tabbed user interface that makes working with multiple text files easier than ever. The new Windows 11 version of Notepad includes a variety of helpful features including a File Explorer button that makes it easy to open and save text files.
Another useful feature is the ability to add shortcuts or hotkeys that make it faster to open a Notepad document. This can be done by right-clicking the Notepad desktop icon and selecting Properties.
9. Set Up a Calendar
One way to streamline your workflow is by using a calendar. Google’s calendars are free and easy to set up, and they can be shared with others. You can also use them to track meetings with colleagues, or schedule events for your team. Then, you can access them from anywhere you have a computer.
The first thing you need to do is create a calendar by clicking the New button. Then, you can tinker with the various options to create a calendar that works best for you. For example, you can select a Start and End time to reflect how your working day is arranged, or choose a week, month or workweek from the View dropdown. You can even change the way that your calendars display by enabling Split view. This allows you to see multiple ticked calendars on the side pane at once, which can save you time if you’re trying to plan your week or workday.