Get your History

Ever forget what you used your cut (Ctr. V) copy (Ctr. C) for? Now you can get a history.

Press Windows Key and “V” simultaneously. This will give you a history of your clipboard, and show you everything you’ve recently placed on your clipboard.

Check it out!

Expand Your Desktop

Windows 10 allows users to expand their desktop by using additional desktops.

expand-desktop

Click on the icon to the right of the search bar, what looks like stacked boxes. This is the Task View.

At the top of the Task View screen, select New Desktop.

Once there are multiple desktops, they can be cycled through by holding the Ctrl+Win Key and pressing the Right or Left arrow keys.

Service Tag

If a user needs the service tag (serial number) of a device, yes they can flip over the device and read the sticker. But what if the sticker is faded or missing? Or what if the device is buried on a desk? Or what if the technician is just not crazy about flipping over a chassis to read tiny characters?

  • Open a PowerShell window (does not need to be admin)
    serial number
hostname

Hostname Directory

Often when working with users, the need may arise to have the name of the computer (hostname). Users may not know where to find the name of the computer easily. This is a simple function to paste the hostname on the taskbar, which can also be used as a directory to store commonly used files or tools.

  1. Open a PowerShell window (does not need to be admin)
  2. Enter the following commands:

    • This sets the variable “dirName” with the path to the folder to create. The Env:ComputerName is an environmental variable which pulls the NetBIOS name.
    • The second command is a conditional statement that checks the filepath for a directory with a name that matches with the name set in the previous command. If there is no directory found, one is created.
  3. To paste it to the taskbar, right click on the taskbar >> select Toolbars (at the top) >> New Toolbar >> navigate to the directory just created, select it, and click Select Folder.
  4. The directory will be saved as a supplementary toolbar on the taskbar.
  5. To access the directory and save files there, right-click on the name (ON-ROC-LT30) and select Open Folder. That will open a File Explorer instance and allow the user to save files there.
  6. The name of the directory will not be automatically updated if the name of the computer is changed, the whole process would need to be run again.
Battery Report

Battery Report

When troubleshooting a battery or charging issue on a laptop, it can be helpful to have a report on the health of the battery itself. This can help determine if the failing component is the battery or the power brick.

  1. Open Command Prompt (does not need to be admin)
    • WinKey + R >> type “cmd”
  2. Enter command

  1. The command will create a Battery Life Report and save it to C:\Users\<username>\battery-report.html.
  2. If the battery is fully discharged and cannot hold a charge any longer, the report will indicate that.

Tech Tip – Use Taskbar Settings to Configure the Taskbar to Show all Icons in the Notification Area

Here’s a good tip for the savvy computer user.  Use Taskbar Settings to configure the Taskbar to Show all Icons in the Notification Area.

The Icons displayed on the Taskbar are not static, they change over time to reflect the current status of the associated applications.  So if you let Windows Hide some of these Icons, which is the default setting, then you will potentially miss when an application tries to alert you to an issue via the taskbar icon.

Here’s how my taskbar looks with the default settings…

If I click on the ^(caret symbol) above I will see that Windows has hidden a lot of information from me.

All of those icons are associated with programs currently running on my computer, and do you see how some have green dots by them?  Well those green dots can become red dots, indicating there is a problem, or some other status.  If the icons are hidden, we will completely miss that there is an issue that should likely be addressed.

So I think it is important to have full visibility into these icons.  To do this, right click on the taskbar and go to Taskbar Settings.

Scroll down to the Notification area, and click on “Select which icons appear on the taskbar.”

Turn on “Always show all icons in the notification area”

Voila!  Now all of the notification icons will be at a glance away in your taskbar and you will be the better informed computer user that has taken proactive steps to improving their computing experience!

Congratulations!

-John