DON'S FREEWARE CORNER - DEC 2016
TIPS AND SHORTCUTS FOR WINDOWS 10 AND BROWSERS

2016 Donald R. Snow - page last updated 2016-12-30.
These Freeware Corner notes are published in TAGGology, our Utah Valley Technology and Genealogy Group (UVTAGG) monthly newsletter. They are also posted on my Freeware Corner Notes page on http://uvtagg.org/classes/dons/dons-classes.html where the links are active and there may be corrections and additions and other related notes and articles.
ABSTRACT
These tips and keyboard shortcuts are for Windows 10, the current version of Microsoft Windows, but most also work for Windows 8, 7, and XP. The browser tips work for browsers such as CHROME, FIREFOX, EDGE (Microsoft's browser in Windows 10), and INTERNET EXPLORER (Microsoft's browser in Windows 8, 7, and XP). Some of these tips are for the file management programs FILE EXPLORER (Windows 10) and WINDOWS EXPLORER (Windows 8, 7, and XP).
  1. KEYBOARD SHORTCUTS
    You probably already use some of these shortcuts, but there may also be a few new ones here for you. The ones considered here don't form a complete list and you can find additional ones on websites such as http://www.customguide.com/free-computer-training/ and https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=48716 . I printed these two web lists to pdf (an option in Windows 10) and then from the pdfs I printed two-page hard copies and put them in sheet protectors in a binder to refer to. If you are not using Windows 10, there are freeware programs that will print things to pdf (see below).

  2. LEFT CLICK VS RIGHT CLICK
    In Windows clicking the left mouse button usually performs an operation and the right button opens a menu. The right-click menu is called the Context Menu and includes Copy, Paste, Delete, Rename, and more. It also includes programs you may have installed on your computer. For example, if you have installed EVERNOTE (freeware or commercial versions), one of the options in the Context Menu will be "Send To EVERNOTE" and clicking on this option will copy the highlighted file or folder there. But the important thing to remember about left and right clicking is that, in general, "left click performs an operation" and "right click opens a menu".

  3. MOVE, COPY AND PASTE, OR CREATE A SHORTCUT
    To move, copy and paste, or form a shortcut for a file or folder, open the folder it is in with FILE EXPLORER, so you can see the name of the item you want to work on. Right click on the name and drag the cursor to where you want to move, copy, or make a shortcut for it. When you release your right click, you see the options of Copy, Move, Create a Shortcut, or Cancel, so left click the one you want. If you left click the original file or folder and drag it, the whole file or folder is moved to wherever you drag-and-drop it, which you may not want to do.

  4. HIGHLIGHT A GROUP
    To highlight several files or folders hold down the CTRL key while clicking on each one. This allows highlighting more than one file or folder and these can be in a sequence, i.e. one after the other, or not. If you want to highlight a whole sequence of files or folders, you can do this more easily by highlighting the first one, then holding down the CTRL key while clicking on the last one. You get all the files or folders highlighted in between so you can copy, move, delete, or rename them all. This works in any Windows program and is a very useful on many occasions.

  5. PRINT TO PDF WINDOWS 10
    has a built-in "Print To PDF" option. When you click Print in any WINDOWS 10 program, you see the options of which printer or program to use and one of them is Print To PDF. This sends the print information directly to a pdf file and not to hard copy. For any version of Windows there are also several freeware programs that will do this, e.g. http://www.cutepdf.com/Products/CutePDF/writer.asp and http://www.majorgeeks.com/files/details/doro_pdf_writer.html . There is an entire Freeware Corner article that I wrote about PDF PRINTERS on my webpage. I usually leave my default printer set as Print To PDF, so I can see exactly what the hard copy will look like without wasting paper. When it is just the way I want, I save it by printing to pdf, and then print that pdf to hard copy. That way I always have the file to print additional copies, if I ever need them. I am finding that I print less and less to hard copy now and more and more to pdf, so I use less paper and the pdfs are easier to find and work with.

  6. ALT-TAB TO SWITCH BETWEEN PROGRAMS
    If you have several programs open, holding down the ALT key and pressing TAB cycles through them all and you see a box around the one that is active. Stop when the box surrounds the one you want to use and that program becomes the active one.

  7. PROGRAM ICONS ON THE TASKBAR
    When a program is opened, you see its icon on the taskbar (bar across the bottom of the screen) with it underlined. Clicking on the icon maximizes or minimizes the open program. To put a program icon on the taskbar so you can open it again later, even after you close the program, right click the icon on the taskbar and select Pin To Taskbar. Clicking on this icon will now open the program whenever you want, and when the program is open, the icon is underlined.

  8. SIZE AND VISIBILITY OF THE CURSOR
    The size of the cursor can be changed by clicking on the WINDOWS 10 icon (small slanted window in lower left corner of screen) > Settings (small gear wheel icon) > Ease of Access > Mouse > Pointer Size. I set my cursor to be Large, so it is easier to see. I also set the cursor thickness to be a little wider; you do this under Other Options. Under Settings > Devices > Mouse and Touchpad > Additional Mouse Options > Pointer Options, I set the cursor to move with the mouse speed I want and I set it to show long pointer trails, so as I move the cursor, it shows the trails and my poor eyesight can find it more easily. There is also an option to show the location of the pointer by putting concentric circles around it, when you click the CTRL key.

  9. SEARCH BOX
    Clicking on the WINDOWS 10 icon (small slanted window in lower left corner of screen ) opens a menu of options and programs including a search box just above the WINDOWS 10 icon. Typing in any word or phrase there gives you a list of all programs with that word or phrase in the title. For example, type in "settings" and you see all programs with that in their title somewhere. You see the first few results and a link to click to see more results. It also has an option to Search The Internet for that word or phrase with whatever browser and search engine you have set as your defaults.

  10. SETTING THE DEFAULT PROGRAMS
    The Default Programs are the ones that open files automatically when you click on the file title. For example, you can set your default browser, the default programs for email, pdfs, photos, documents, text, music, or any other type file. File types are indicated by the file extensions, e.g. the 3 or 4 characters after the dot in the title such as .html, .doc, .jpg, etc. To set the default programs click on the Window 10 icon (small slanted window in lower left corner of screen) > Settings > System > Default Apps and set whichever programs you want to be your defaults. Any program you want to set as a default must be installed on your computer; for example, if you want to set CHROME as your default browser, you must download and install it first. To see what type the files are, I find it helpful to always show the file extensions by FILE EXPLORER > View > and put a check in File Name Extensions. Otherwise, the extensions are not shown at the ends of file names.

  11. WINDOWS-E TO OPEN FILE EXPLORER
    The WINDOWS key is the one on the left side of the keyboard with the Microsoft Window logo on it. Holding it down and pressing E opens the FILE EXPLORER program without having to use your mouse to click on the File Folder icon on the taskbar. Each time you press this combination it opens another copy of FILE EXPLORER and this is helpful to see two or more directories open at once to compare them or drag-and-drop between them. Clicking on the File Folder icon on the taskbar opens FILE EXPLORER, but that just allows a single copy of it.

  12. CTRL-ALT-DEL TO GET YOUR COMPUTER'S ATTENTION
    To stop a program when it is taking too long or you think it is in a loop, and the ESC key doesn't work, hold down CTRL-ALT-DEL, all three keys at once. This gets your computer's attention and shows a menu. Click on TASK MANAGER and you see a list of all programs running and their information and you can stop any or all of them.

  13. CTRL-CLICK TO OPEN A LINK WHILE KEEPING YOUR PLACE IN THE OLD PAGE
    In browsers or other programs where there are links to other websites holding down the CTRL key while clicking the link makes the link open in a new window, so you keep your place in the original program. This makes it very easy to get back to where you were without having to use the back arrow key and scrolling through the old program to get back to where you came from.

  14. FORM A DESKTOP ICON FOR A WEBSITE
    When you find a website that you want to have an icon for, drag the small icon that is in front of the website's address in your browser over to your desktop or down to your taskbar. This forms an icon there that will open that particular browser and go immediately to that webpage.

  15. VIEWING THE FILE CONTENTS IN THE PREVIEW PANE OF FILE EXPLORER
    In FILE EXPLORER and WINDOWS EXPLORER there is an option to show the Preview Pane. In FILE EXPLORER it is in View and in WINDOWS EXPLORER it is in the 9-dot-square icon in the upper right corner. Then, when highlighting a file title, you see what's in the file in the Preview Pane to the right. This helps you when working on, renaming, moving, or deleting files without having to open them first. The Preview Pane shows the file as if you had opened it in the default program for that type of file. You can even scroll through all pages of a pdf, for example, without opening it in your pdf program. This helps greatly in file management and renaming since you don't have to open the file in another program first.

  16. CONCLUSIONS
    These are just a few of the tips and keyboard shortcuts that WINDOWS 10 and browsers have. The "cheat-sheets" mentioned above list many more and I will probably write later FREEWARE CORNER articles on additional ones.