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Tips & Tricks

RecommendationsTips & Tricks
November 27, 2010

Comparing Files and Folders With WinMerge

Before I started working for my current employer, I hadn't yet discovered how useful differencing tools could be. As I began working regularly with Visual SourceSafe 6 at work, I grew to value the fact that I could check for differences before every file check in. It was a standard for my employer, but to me, it was a process I was getting used to. Eventually, I realized that I needed a stand-alone comparison tool, in case Visual SourceSafe wasn't around. This eventually lead me to a WinMerge, an open source differencing and merging tool. There are numerous reasons why I like WinMerge. Most of all, I really appreciate the contextual options. With files, I can select any difference within a file, and choose to…
Tutorials
October 23, 2010

How to Restore Underlined Shortcuts in Menus

In a post titled New Folder Shortcut in Windows, I explained how accelerator keys could speed up the process of creating new folders. The key combination that needs to be pressed depends on which letters are underlined in the Windows menu; however, starting with Vista, Microsoft decided to hide these hints, by default. You can still use the key combinations if you know them, but if you don't, here's how to make to the underlined letters always visible in Windows 7: Click Start, and launch the Control Panel. Click Ease of Access. Click Change how your keyboard works. Locate the Make it easier to use keyboard shortcuts section. Enable the Underline keyboard shortcuts and access keys checkbox. Click OK. That's it. After that change, menus…
Tips & Tricks
August 20, 2010

New Folder Shortcut in Windows

I'm constantly on the lookout for quicker ways to perform everyday tasks in Windows. That said, when I needed to create multiple empty folders at different folder depths, I questioned how I would do so with keyboard shortcuts. Windows 7 already facilitates the process of creating new folders, but most of the visible options are mouse-powered:   Despite these mouse-powered shortcuts, I've always felt that keyboard shortcuts were faster. With that in mind, I took my search to Google, and eventually and found what I was looking for: CTRL + SHIFT + N Great shortcut... after you press it, you can immediately start typing the folder name. No need to use the mouse in between creating the folder, and typing the name. There's just one unfortunate catch…
Reviews
July 24, 2010

Trapped In A Dialog

As you may know, I sometimes use Jing to take screenshots. Usually, this is when Snipping Tool stops working, and my kill the process trick doesn't revive it. Lately, when I booted my machine, I saw this dialog appear: Learn Jing Now? No thanks, I already know how to use Jing. So... what other options do I have? "Replay" "Sign Up Now" That's it. The usual Minimize-Maximize-Close buttons from Windows aren't there, and I don't see a Close button. Replay just starts the tutorial video again, and Sign Up Now sounds like I have to register for something . I already created a Screencast account - I remember doing that specifically to satisfy Jing. So, as far as I know, I don't need to sign up. Yet,…
Tips & Tricks
July 11, 2010

Accessing the Menu Bar in Windows Vista and Windows 7

Before the introduction of Vista, Windows always featured a menu bar in Windows Explorer. It offered the following menu options: File, Edit, View, Favorites, Tools, and Help. Below is a screenshot of the bar in Windows Server 2003: Since Vista, Microsoft has decided to hide the bar, by default. In Windows 7, here's what Windows Explorer looks like: While the menu bar is no longer visible, it hasn't been completely removed from the operating system. You can simply press ALT to make it appear. Once visible, it is designed to disappear whenever you left-click the Windows Explorer window. If you actually click the menu, you can execute one action, and then the bar will disappear again. In this manner, Windows ensures that the menu bar is…