15 Essential Microsoft Word Shortcuts

Word shortcuts

 

Microsoft Word is one of those programmes you use every day (pretty much) without giving it a second thought.

But what if there was a way to be more productive?

It’s the same with anything you use regularly.

You become overly familiar with it and then continue to use it as as you always have, even if there’s a quicker way to get things done.

That’s the problem with Word. It’s certainly not the hardest bit of software to use, so the way you use it seems perfectly OK. However, just a few minutes of your time will make you more productive.

Below are 15 really useful keyboard shortcuts that you, or may not know about. They work for both Word for Windows 2013 and 2016.

Ready?

Here goes.

  1. Keyboard Access to the Ribbon: Just like Excel, Word has a method that lets you access menu items using only your keyboard. Just press Alt or F10 and letters will appear next to each visible menu item. Press the corresponding letter to activate a particular menu option. To get rid of the labels, press Esc.
  2. Ctrl + F1: Display or hide the Ribbon.
  3. Ctrl + K: Insert a hyperlink for the selected text.
  4. Ctrl + F: Open the search box in the navigation pane.
  5. Alt + Ctrl + S: Split or remove split in the document window.
  6. Ctrl + Backspace: Delete one word to the left.
  7. Shift + F3: Change the case of the selected letters.
  8. Alt + Shift + W: Underline the selected words, but not the spaces included in the selection.
  9. Ctrl + 1: Set single-line spacing.
  10. Ctrl + 2: Set double-line spacing.
  11. Ctrl + 5: Set 1.5-line spacing.
  12. Ctrl + Y: Re-do the last action.
  13. Ctrl + Enter: Insert page break.
  14. Ctrl + W: Close the current document.
  15. Alt + F4: Close the program.

How many did you already know?

Not many I’m guessing.

There’s lot to remember there, so bookmark this page for easy reference until you’ve committed  them all to memory.

Happy typing.

MPM Computer Consultancy provides IT Services, Support and Training to sole traders and small businesses in Ipswich. Bury St Edmunds and surrounding villages.

How to Recover Lost Form Data in Your Browser

How many times has this happened to you?  Lazarus

You write a blog using a browser-based blog tool, hit the wrong key and bam, there goes all your hard work.

Or, you’re completing a form or registration online and your browser crashes – everything you spent the last half hour writing is lost.

Frustrating?

You bet it is.

Thankfully, there is a little tool you can download that saves every keystroke you enter into any web form.

Want to know what it is?

The little fella is called Lazarus. It’s a browser add-on that makes data recovery child’s play. It is available for Chrome, Firefox and Safari. Yes, sorry about that Internet Explorer users.

How Lazarus works

Basically, Lazarus automatically saves every keystroke you make in an online form, blog tool, comment box etc. (you can also add a password if you want added security).

If you lose any information, to bring it back, just look for the Lazarus symbol (shown above) above the box you were just typing in, give it a click. A pop up appears and all you have to do is select the text you want to recover and it reappears – hey presto!

This simple little tool will save you an awful lot of stress and screaming.

MPM Computer Consultancy provides IT Services, Support and Training to sole traders and small businesses in Ipswich. Bury St Edmunds and surrounding villages.

How to Make Your PC Run Faster

Don’t you just hate it when your PC starts to slow down? How to improve your PCs speed

Rather than sitting there cursing it as you wait for your programmes to load, why not do something about it? It really isn’t that difficult and it doesn’t take long.

All you have to do is follow these simple steps to make a difference.

1. A tidy desktop

A cluttered desktop makes it difficult to find your files, plus it looks awful. But not only that, it can also slow down your computer’s processing speed.

Simply delete any icons that aren’t needed and organise the ones you can’t live without.

2. Empty the bin

Deleting stuff and sending it to the recycle bin is easy. But, just like your office bin, it can get really full, which in turn will slow your PC down.

Make sure you empty it out regularly.

3. Delete files

No, we don’t mean delete every file on your PC, just the ones you don’t need.

Over time you would have amassed a number of documents, programmes, videos or music files that you don’t need any more. Rather than leaving them there to take up unnecessary space, delete them to improve your computer’s performance.

4. Virus

Nothing slows a PC down like a virus and some can infect your computer without you even knowing about it. That’s why you should regularly scan your system for any nasty little critters that have snuck through your defences.

5. Cleanup

On your Windows PC, under System Tools, you’ll find the Disk Cleanup programme. This will scan your PC and remove any temporary Internet files, setup log files and other temporary files you don’t need to be storing. It will also empty your recycling bin.

6. Defrag

Ever come across the Disk Defragmenter programme? Do you know what it does? Basically, it scans your hard drive and arranges all your files in a clean and neat order that makes it easier for your PC to find things, therefore speeding it up.

This is the last step of your maintenance routine that should be done regularly.

There you go, we told you it was easy. All you have to do is set yourself a reminder to go through your maintenance routine regularly.

MPM Computer Consultancy provides IT Services, Support and Training to sole traders and small businesses in Ipswich. Bury St Edmunds and surrounding villages.

Windows Defender: Uninstall, Disable, Remove and Switch Off

Being the safety conscious type, I’m sure you’ve made sure your PC is protected with the latest all singing all dancing anti-malware software.

Good for you.

But did you realise that Windows Defender is already installed with Windows and is probably wasting precious resources on your machine because?

No?

Well, you’ll probably be interested in hearing how to get shot of it, after all what’s the point in having two pieces of software feverishly working away doing the same job when you only need one?

So here’s how to disable Windows Defender.

Why disable and not uninstall? Simply because its built into Windows so you can’t uninstall it. So here’s how you can disable it.

Open Windows Defender by going to Tools on the top menu and clicking Options.

Disable windows defender

 

 

 

 

 

Then click on Administrator on the left-hand pane, uncheck the box for “Use this program” and click Save.

Disable windows defender

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You will then be told the program us turned off.

If you want to make sure it never comes back on, open up the Services panel through Control Panel or by typing services.msc into the Start Menu search or run boxes. Find Windows Defender in  the list and double click it.

disable windows defender

 

 

 

Then change Startup to Disabled:

disable windows defender

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Just remember, if you do disable Windows Defender make sure you have protected yourself from malware with another product.

If you have any queries or want to know how to do something else with your Windows machine, leave a comment below and we’ll see what we can do to help.

Setting up a Windows 7 HomeGroup

HomeGroup is a rather nifty feature of Windows 7 that allows you to easily share documents, photos and music across your home network.

If you want to learn how to set it up, we found a very useful guide on PCPro by David Fearon. It assumes you have 2 Windows 7 machines on a local network at home. Every machine you want to include in your HomeGroup will have to run on Windows 7.

How to set up a Windows 7 HomeGroup

 

clip_image002Step 01 — Select network type

The first thing to is make sure your network type is set to ‘home’ rather than ‘work’ or ‘public’. Start up the Network and Sharing Center, click your network under the Active Networks heading and then select Home.

 

clip_image004Step 02 — Start HomeGroup

Now type ‘homegroup’ in the Windows 7 start box and hit Enter. You’ll get a dialog telling you there’s no homegroup on the network. Click ‘Create a homegroup’ and choose which types of files you want to share and hit Okay.

clip_image006Step 03 — Copy the password

After a short pause, a window will appear, in which a password will fade elegantly into view. You’ll notice the password is long and random. You can write it down or, preferably, copy and paste it into a new text document.

 

clip_image008Step 04 — Change settings

Hit Finish and you’ll get the option to change the settings of the homegroup you’ve just created. There’s also the option to stream all your media in the old way via Media Player-style sharing – this isn’t actually part of the HomeGroup system though.

 

clip_image010Step 05 — Join your HomeGroup

With the homegroup set up, you can join it from any other Windows 7 PC on the network by clicking the HomeGroup entry in the left-hand pane of Explorer windows. The Join HomeGroup dialog will automatically open.

clip_image012Step 06 — Enter password

Enter the password you wrote down when you created the group, select which of the documents you want to share on this computer and that’s all there is to it. You can leave the group at any time from HomeGroup settings window.

There you go, that’s all there is to it.

Author: MPM Computer Consultancy provides IT Services, Support and Training to sole traders and small businesses in Ipswich. Bury St Edmunds and surrounding villages.

Getting a Handle on Your IT

bull by the horns

Everything is going computerised – OK, so that’s not exactly headline news, but you’d be surprised at the number of companies out there still battling with paper records.

To those who don’t use it a lot, technology can seem daunting. There’s that constant fear of pressing the wrong button and losing everything. And what happens when something goes wrong?

The sad fact is that if you don’t get a handle on your IT and drag your business into the 21st century, you’re going to be left behind.

Get your training started

Take a look at these questions:

  • Are you a small company trying to compete in the big world of commerce?
  • Are you fed up with manual cash books, sales books, carbon copy invoices and hand written quotations?
  • Do you own a computer, but are not sure how best to utilise it?
  • Would you like a computer but don’t know where to begin, and have no one to guide you to buy one?
  • Would you like some affordable help?

Go on, be honest, how many times did you say ‘yes’?

It’s time to take the bull by the horns (or computer by the keyboard) and get to grips with technology – it’s really not as difficult as you think.

Contacting your local IT training specialist will help your business compete with the big boys.

Before you know it, you’ll be surfing, word processing and spread-sheeting like a professional.

What are you waiting for? Find your nearest IT training company today and embrace technology.

New Electronic Communications Regulations–Cookies

cookiesSadly, we’re not talking about chocolate chip or all-butter cookies, but rather the text files that websites put on a user’s computer to store information, such as user preferences.

The new rules governing cookies were brought in to play in the UK on 25th May by the Privacy and electronic Communications (EC Directive)(Amendment) regulations 2011/1208 (see here for more details – and more information on the amending regulations is available here).

Of course, it’s going to take time to come up with workable solutions to these amendments, so the Commissioners Office has given organisations and businesses running websites (aimed at UK consumers), up to 12 months ‘to get their house in order’ before taking enforcement action under the new law.

According to the FSB Business Informer (Jul/Aug 2011), the Department for Culture, Media and Sport has also addressed concerns that changes to the use of cookies could have a serious impact on the web by supporting cross-industry work that would result in adverts having an easily recognisable icon to make it easy for users either to access more information or refuse cookies.

So, if you run a website aimed at UK consumers it would be wise to keep an ear to the ground to make sure you take the necessary action to ensure you don’t fall foul of the new rules.

Author: MPM Computer Consultancy provides IT Services, Support and Training to sole traders and small businesses in Ipswich. Bury St Edmunds and surrounding villages.

Getting Your Business Started

You probably don’t want to hear this right now, but the festive season is fast approaching, which means a New Year is just around the corner.

We all like to come up with a resolution to mark the start of another 12 months and with the current climate, many of you may be considering setting up your own business.

But where do you start?

Getting out there and doing your own thing is exciting and frightening all at the same time. It’s your opportunity to say goodbye to your boss forever. You can work the hours you want, when you want. You are in control of your destiny.

Great! But what about all the other stuff? What about being in charge of your IT all by yourself?

Getting help

There’s a lot to think about on the IT front when starting up your business – domain names, email, social media, is your computer up to the job?

So now’s the time to get the help you need. Now, we don’t normally like to blow our own trumpet here on IT Support Blog, but considering the number of people who will be looking to go it alone in 2012, we felt compelled to tell you about the Start-Up Package we’ve put together.

To help  you find your feet, we’re offering a package that covers:

  • Half hour free consultation reviewing your needs
  • Domain name registration
  • Email hosting – set-up and configuration of Outlook
  • Bullguard Anti-virus Software – set-up and configuration
  • MPMITVault Online Backup – set-up and configuration
  • PC/Laptop Assessment/Spring Clean
  • Smart Phone configuration of domain emails
  • Set-up of business social media accounts (LinkedIn/Twitter)

What’s more, you get all of that for just £200.

Sor, if you’re looking to start your own business, make sure you’ve got all the IT boxes ticked.

Author: MPM Computer Consultancy provides IT Services, Support and Training to sole traders and small businesses in Ipswich. Bury St Edmunds and surrounding villages.

PC Jargon Buster

Do you really understand the inner workings of your PC?

When investing in a new machine, do you really understand all those initials and numbers?

To many, the inner workings of a PC is shrouded in mystery. It’s list of features appears to be written in a strange and archaic language that few understand. But help is at hand.

In this post, we’ll look at the jargon used in the world of computing so you can better understand your PC

Hardware

Getting to grips with your PC’s hardware can seem pretty daunting. But, by the end of this post, you will be able to identify the different components of your PC and understand their function.

This overview will cover the System Unit, Disk Drive and Display Screen – are you ready?

System Unit

image

As the diagram above shows, the System Unit is made up from:

  • Motherboard
  • Microprocessor
  • Memory
  • Expansion slots
  • Power connectors
  • Disk drives

The Motherboard (also known as a system or base board) is a single printed circuit board that holds the microprocessor, memory chips (RAM & ROM), expansion slots and power connectors.

The Microprocessor is the brain of your PC. Also known as the CPU (central processing unit) it carries out commands, controls the timings of each operation and performs arithmetic calculations. The most common microprocessor manufacturers are Intel, Cyrix, AMD and Nexus. The speed of these microprocessors is measured in megahertz – the higher the number, the faster your PC.

When it comes to Memory, your PC has two types – RAM and ROM. RAM is high speed memory that the microprocessor can read from or write to for temporary storage of programs or data while in use. Unlike disk drives, any information in RAM is lost when you switch off your machine. It should therefore be considered as a work space – again, the bigger the desk (number of RAM) the more you can do.

ROM, on the other hand, holds information which was been programmed into your PC during its manufacture and can’t be altered.

Expansion slots give you the opportunity to grow your system by adding new features such as a fax/modem, SCSI interface or sound blaster card.

The Power supply is what converts the 240v AC electricity supply to the 5v (for the circuit boards) and 12v (powers motor driven devices such as hard drives) DC power required by the PC.

Disk Drives

There are two categories of disk drive:

  • High speed hard drives (usually fixed within your PC)
  • Slower, flexible (floppy) disks (removable media)

The Hard Drive is fixed within the system unit and is capable of storing much more data than floppy disks. Therefore, it is essential you constantly back-up your files regularly.

In comparison a floppy disk holds less data and are considerably slower in use than hard disks. Their main advantage is their portability. However, today’s modern PCs, and especially laptops, are moving away from this media in favour of CD/DVD.

Display Screen

The main output device of most PCs is the display screen.

The display adapter or video card is found inside the system unit and can be an integral part of the motherboard or, more commonly, an expansion card.

The display adapter receives image data from the microprocessor and stores the information in video RAM – a special form of RAM usually located on the video card. A special video chip scans this data and converts it to a digital image. This digital image is then converted to a form that can be displayed using the monitor.

So there you go – your PC’s internal workings in a nutshell.

Author: MPM Computer Consultancy provides IT Services, Support and Training to sole traders and small businesses in Ipswich. Bury St Edmunds and surrounding villages.

Are You On Skype?

Free calls (Skype to Skype), video chats, instant messaging, conference calls, file sharing…it’s all possible through Skype. So how come you’re not using it yet?

The basic package is free so you can make that call to your brother in Australia without worrying about cost. Plus you can make calls to mobiles or landlines (anywhere in the world) cheaply with Skype credit.

It’s quick and easy to set up and you can even use it on your mobile.

Setting yourself up on Skype

To give you a helping hand, here are some instructions on how to set up Skype (PC users).

1. Go to the Skype website and click the ‘download’ button.

2. A window will appear asking you what to do next. Click ‘Save File’.

3. The setup wizard will then start. Once download is complete click on the SkypeSetup.exe file from your web browser downloads window to open the setup application. The wizard will appear and guide you through the rest of the installation.

4. Once the installation is complete you can launch Skype by clicking the icon on your desktop.

5. You’re ready to start using Skype.

Whether you are looking to use it for personal or business use, Skype is a cost effective and fun way to keep in touch with colleagues, friends and family.

Join in the conversation and download it today.

Author: MPM Computer Consultancy provides IT Services, Support and Training to sole traders and small businesses in Ipswich. Bury St Edmunds and surrounding villages.