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Tame your computer – go back in time

8 May

One of my own all-time favourite ways to go back to a web page I’ve visited before is to simply type part of its title in the browser’s address bar. A list of websites you visited containing that title pops up and you can use your arrow keys or your mouse to open it.

If you like this way of working, you might want to change the number of days that pages are kept in the history. Mine were set at 20 days – the default – but you can go as high as 999.

Here’s how:

  1. Click on the Tools button. (Or press ALT + X.)
  2. Click on Internet options (or press its underscored letter o).
  3. On the General tab, under Browsing history, click Settings.
  4. On the History tab change the number of days you want Internet Explorer to keep track of the pages you visit. (If you don’t want a webpage history, you can set the number of days to 0.)
  5. Click OK twice.

Please be aware that there is a chance that this option has been disabled by the IT department where you work.

Related tips:
Reopen recently closed tabs
Bring back the menu bar
Quickly access your Web browser history
Find websites you visited in the past
Why and how to clear your “cache”

Tame your computer – make a quick exit

25 Aug

If, like me, you prefer to use your keyboard rather than your mouse you might know – or want to know – that Microsoft introduced “KeyTips” in Office 2007, offering a quick way to select commands using your keyboard. One of the favourite KeyTips of my dear friend Danijela is ALT, F, X which will select the Exit command from the File tab.

Here’s how:

  1. Press ALTFX. (Or Press ALT + F4.)
  2. When prompted, type the underlined letter s (Save) or n (Don’t Save) or press the ESC key to cancel the operation.

This will close down the whole application, not just the active document, as described in tip 272.

I’ll update the shortcut archive but in the meantime a big thank you to Dani for this week’s tip inspiration!

 

Related tips:
Selecting commands without using your mouse
Close a window without clicking in the upper-right corner 

Tame your computer – open another window

29 Jun

Would it be helpful to be able to move one of your browser tabs to a new window so that you can display it next to another window? In Internet Explorer you can press CTRL + N to open your current tab in a new window, but that will leave the original tab open as well. So why not move it to a new window and display it next to any other window?

Here’s how:

  1. Click on the tab and drag it downwards.
  2. Press WIN + right arrow or WIN + left arrow to “snap” the window to the right or left.
  3. Click in any other window of any of your open applications and press WIN + right arrow or WIN + left to display the windows side by side.

By the way, if you keep pressing the same keyboard combination, your window will go round in circles.  I cannot test this out as I don’t have two monitors, but apparently it even cycles through both monitors.

 

Tame your computer – jump to it

21 Mar

Back in 2009 I wrote a tip on how to close a window without clicking in the upper-right corner … simply press CTRL + W.

Ever since then,  it’s been one of my favourite shortcuts, but I’ve noticed I’m sometimes a bit trigger-happy and end up closing browser tabs I didn’t mean to close.

So today’s tip is another great shortcut to reopen the last closed tab – and jump to it.

Here’s how:

1.       Press CTRL + SHIFT + T

If you don’t like keyboard shortcuts or prefer to use your mouse, simply right-click one of the remaining tabs and select Reopen closed tab (Chrome) or Reopen closed window (Internet Explorer) or Undo Close Tab (Firefox).

Related tips:

Tip # 264: Find websites you visited in the past

Tip # 265: Switching between multiple browser tabs

Tip # 272: Close a window without clicking in the upper-right corner

Tip # 339: Different ways to close your browser tabs

Tame your computer – menu manipulation

25 Mar

Since 1995 Microsoft has developed 11 versions of Internet Explorer. Back in October 2006 they released version 7 and decided to hide the classic menu bar, normally located at the top of the window. They did this to increase the page viewing space. Great, but there might be times you want to use the File, Edit, View, Favorites, Tools or Help menus, if only to find out what version you are using. (Select About Internet Explorer from the Help menu.)

Here’s how:

  1. Launch Internet Explorer, as normal
  2. Press the ALT key (next to your spacebar)

When you press ALT, the menu bar will be displayed temporarily. If you prefer to have the Menu bar displayed by default you can do the following:

  1. Launch Internet Explorer, as normal
  2. Press ALT
  3. Press V (for View)
  4. Press T (for Toolbars)
  5. Press M (for Menu)

Oh, and as the title of the tip implies … this works for Firefox too. Google Chrome, however, has no menu bar; actions such as Edit and Help can be found when you click on the button in the upper-right corner of the screen. The button looks like a wrench or three horizontal lines, depending on what version of Chrome you use (which you can find out when you click on the button).

To find out how to quickly hide toolbars to increase page viewing space see Tip 173.

Tame your computer – get back!

18 Oct

All web browsers keep a record of every page you visit and there are various ways to access it. You no doubt know you can use the browser’s Back button to return to the last page you visited. Or perhaps you hold down the SHIFT key and roll the wheel down, as described in tip 136?

Maybe you right-click the Back button or press CTRL + H? Well, during a training session earlier this week one of my course participants told me a method I was unaware of.

Here’s how:

1.       Click and pull down the Back button.

I cannot remember who it was who shared this tip, but I’m very grateful. Thanks!

Tame your computer – super switching

9 Nov

One of my most recent shortcuts of the week was CTRL + TAB to move to the next open tab in Internet Explorer, Firefox and Chrome. But did you know you can also use this shortcut in Excel to switch between all open Excel workbooks?

Here’s how:

  1. Press CTRL + TAB to display the next currently open Excel workbook.
  2. Keep your finger on the CTRL key and continue to press the TAB key, until you reach your desired workbook. (In case you overshoot your desired window, press SHIFT + CTRL + TAB to cycle the other way.)
  3. Release the CTRL key.

If you have lots and lots of Excel workbooks open it might be faster to use the Switch Windows button in the Window group on the View tab, but you know how much I love keyboard shortcuts so I simply cannot help myself! This was why back in March 2013 I launched a ‘shortcut of the week’ feature on our website, in an effort to help you work faster (and healthier). You can find the shortcut of the week on our home page, from where you can also download or print our shortcut archive.

PS I’m committed to sharing the best of what I know with others so please don’t keep these tips a secret. If you enjoyed today’s tip, please forward it to anyone you feel may benefit or reprint it  (with full copyright and subscription information) in your newsletters and message boards. Got a tip to share? Submit it by emailing karen@roem.co.uk – if your tip is selected, I’ll publish it along with your name; the bragging rights will last a lifetime.

Tame your computer – jump to it!

24 Nov

Some websites require you to scroll down a long page, and you probably use your mouse wheel or  perhaps you still drag the scroll bar. But did you know you can scroll faster and more precisely without ever having to take your hands off the keyboard?

Here’s how:

  1. Scroll down: press the spacebar.
  2. Scroll up: hold down the SHIFT key and press the spacebar.

Each time you press the spacebar, you will move one full screen at a time, making it easy to spot where you left off.

Obviously this cannot be used in any software package where pressing the spacebar would add a space – such as in Word – but if you find yourself reading a very long PDF file you might like this screen-sized jumping trick.

Tame your computer – zippity zoom

26 Jan

Have you ever struggled to get your browser’s “zoom” level back to normal? Perhaps you (accidentally) used your mouse wheel to zoom in or out (see tip 180 if you were unaware of this functionality) and don’t know how to reset it back to the default view?

Here’s how:

  1. Press CTRL+0 (NOTE: The zero does not work if you use the numeric keypad of your keyboard.)

Yep, that’s all there’s to it. So let’s throw in a bonus tip… to increase your zoom by 10% press CTRL++ (you can keep pressing that keyboard combination until you have magnified your page to what you want it to be).

To decrease the zoom by 10%, press CTRL+-. And yes, you guessed it: keep pressing that Control and the Minus sign to shrink your page.

By the way, I’ve tested this in Internet Explorer and Firefox, but it probably also works in other browsers.

Tame your computer – seeking closure?

21 Oct

With the release of Internet Explorer (IE) 7, we all had to get used to “tabbed browsing”, which means you can have multiple websites open in a single browser window. Although this results in fewer items open on the taskbar, I know that there are some neat and tidy people out there that want to close tabs as they go along.

Here’s how:

  1. Press CTRL+W. OR
  2. Click the X on the tab. OR
  3. If you have a mouse with a wheel, click the tab you want to close with the middle mouse button. OR
  4. Right-click on the tab and select Close.

Try them out and find the one you like best!

By the way, if you hate tabbed browsing, you can turn it off.

Here’s how:

  1. If necessary, press ALT+T to display the menus.
  2. Select the Tools menu, followed by Internet Options.
  3. On the General tab, in the Tabs section, click Settings.
  4. Untick the Enable Tabbed Browsing check box.
  5. Click OK twice.
  6. Close and open Internet Explorer.

From now on every webpage will open in a new Internet Explorer window, like it used to do many, many moons ago.