Make Windows Better Tell your PC to shut down
Expert tips for every version
WINDOWS 10 Shut down your PC using your voice
One of the lesser-known features of Microsoft’s personal voice assistant Cortana is the ability to switch off, restart, sign out of and lock your PC. To execute these voice commands, you first need to ensure that Cortana is enabled.
Open the Settings app, then click Cortana. Here, click the Hey Cortana slider to switch it on (see screenshot below). The sliders below (‘Keyboard shortcut’ and ‘Lock Screen’) let you launch Cortana by pressing Windows key+c, and use it when your PC is locked.
To tell your PC what to do, open Cortana by saying ‘Hey Cortana’ or by using the keyboard shortcut, then say ‘Hey Cortana, shut down/sign out of/ restart/lock my PC’. Cortana will prompt you to confirm the action. Say ‘Yes’. If you switch on the Lock Screen slider, you can carry out these voice commands when your PC is locked.
WINDOWS 10 Copy and paste PDF text using Microsoft Edge
There are several free nonMicrosoft programs that let you copy text from PDFS, but if you use Windows 10, you can do this using Microsoft’s browser Edge.
Right-click the relevant PDF, move your cursor to ‘Open with’, then click Microsoft Edge. Now select the text you want to copy and you’ll see a pop-up menu with four icons (see screenshot below).
The first icon is used to highlight the selected text, the second icon to write an
annotated note beside it, and the fourth icon to run a Cortana or web search for the text. Click the third icon to copy your selected text. You can then open the program you want to copy it to and paste it.
WINDOWS 8.1, 10 Save your articles before the Reading List app disappears
Windows 8.1 introduced a built-in Reading List app that let you save web articles to read later (even when offline). This app is included in Windows 10, but when you open it now, you’ll see an ‘Ending support for this app’ message. Click the ‘Tell me more’ link next to the message and you’ll see advice to save your reading list to Onenote or to your email account. At present, there’s no indication exactly when the app will be discontinued, but it’s a good idea to back up any unread articles in the app.
To do this, press Ctrl, then select an article in the list. Next, click ‘Select all’ at the bottom, the three lines at the top left (see screenshot above), Share, then select Mail or Onenote.
Alternatively, you can click ‘Get apps in Store’ to look for other email and notetaking apps to save your articles to.
ONENOTE Link to other pages or sections quickly
It can be very useful to link one section or page to another within the same notebook in Onenote – and now there’s a very quick way to do this.
For example, to link to a page or section in the same notebook that’s headed ‘Things To Do’, simply type [[Things To Do]] – using double square brackets. The words ‘Things To Do’ (without the brackets) will appear as a clickable link to that section.
LIBREOFFICE CALC Colour-code numbers for quicker identification
If you’re creating a Libreoffice Calc sheet, there’s an easy way to add gradients of colours to a column of numbers to distinguish values at a glance.
For example, you can apply Calc’s default colours of red to lower values, yellow to mid-range values and green to higher values (see screenshot below). To do this, highlight the cells you want to colour-code. Next, click the Format tab, move your cursor to Conditional Formatting, then click Color Scale.
Here, you’ll see three dropdown menus for low values (on the left), mid-range values (in the middle) and high numbers (on the right). As mentioned the default colours are red, yellow and green, but you can change these to more appropriate shades using the colour dropdown menus at the bottom of each section. For example, choose a lighter shade for lower values, a mid-tone shade for mid-range values and darker shades for higher values. Click OK to apply your colours.
MICROSOFT OFFICE Add tool tips to links
You may know how to hyperlink text within Office documents, but did you know you can also add tool tips that appear when you move your cursor to any link? This is useful for letting people know the name of the website the link connects to. We’ll show you how to do this using Word, but this tip also applies to Excel and Powerpoint.
Select the text you want to link, then press Ctrl+k to open the Insert Hyperlink pop-up window. Here, you’ll see your selected text in the ‘Text to display’ field at the top. At the bottom, type or paste the URL you want to link to. Next, click the Screentip button (see screenshot above), type the text you want to appear in the tool tip when you hover over the link, then click OK twice.
From now on, whenever you move your cursor to the link, you’ll see the text you typed in a small pop-up box. Press Ctrl, then click the link to go to that website.