How to Use Windows 10

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Windows 10 is the most powerful operating system that Microsoft has ever made, but it's also the most complex. While the user interface is extremely intuitive, you'll have to dig a little deeper to customize your experience, get maximum performance and make the most of features such as the Cortana voice assistant, Edge browser and multiple desktops.

Below, you'll find over 100 Windows 10 tips and tutorials, split into eight categories and designed to help you learn the basics, disable common annoyances, save storage or be more productive.

 

Windows 10 Basics

Learn how to install Windows 10, tweak the most important settings, add users and perform key, everyday tasks.

 

Customize Windows 10

Tweak the Windows UI so it looks and feels just the way you like it. Change the theme, adjust the icon size, or turn the new OS into a dead ringer for Windows 7.

 

Fix Annoyances and Problems

We love Windows 10, but like a close relative, sometimes it can overstep boundaries and get on your nerves. Learn how to prevent the operating system from restarting to update without your permission, speed up a slow-opening Downloads folder or disable personalized ads. Also, find out how to fix serious problems by booting into your BIOS or running older programs in compatibility mode.

 

Cortana Tips

Windows 10's built-in digital assistant can help you gather important information, manage your schedule, send messages and more. Find out how to wake Cortana with a voice command, use her to send email, have her ring your phone, change her accent and more.

 

 

Edge Browser Tips

The default Microsoft browser is blazing fast and dead simple. Here's how to perform a variety of tasks in Edge, from common actions like blocking pop-ups, managing favorites and clearing cookies to tweaking key settings like the default search engine or crash-recovery options.

 

Performance and Productivity

Make both Windows 10 and yourself faster and more powerful. Configure the operating system to boot faster, mirror your screen to an external monitor, record your Xbox games, or activate the platform's built-in "God Mode."

 

 

Security and Networking

Connect your PC to a network or use it as a hotspot while keeping your system secure. Learn how to create limited-privilege guest accounts, password-protected folders and more.

 

 

 

Storage and Backup

Find extra space on your hard drive or SSD by making Windows as small as possible, installing apps on an SD card and deleting the unnecessary Windows.old folder. Make the most of Microsoft's OneDrive cloud backup service by controlling which folders you sync, mapping your account as a network drive and more.

 

 

Author Bio
Avram Piltch
Avram Piltch, LAPTOP Online Editorial Director
The official Geeks Geek, as his weekly column is titled, Avram Piltch has guided the editorial and production of Laptopmag.com since 2007. With his technical knowledge and passion for testing, Avram programmed several of LAPTOP's real-world benchmarks, including the LAPTOP Battery Test. He holds a master’s degree in English from NYU.
Avram Piltch, LAPTOP Online Editorial Director on
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24 comments
  • Jim Durr Says:

    When I click window on lower left, the mouse goes to fast to stop on anything. It zooms up and down and I wanted to try Restart. Can't get it!

  • Big Dom Says:

    Change the Screen Resolution

    Link does not work for me?

  • Russell Corey Says:

    My apps was always on the left as a column

    Now the are on my screen blocking my screen how can I go back t9 the original screen

  • Russell Corey Says:

    My apps are shown on my laptop when l start how do I clear this

  • Don Warshaw Says:

    Thank you for your clarity! Very direct and clear, very easy to follow.
    Now, if you can only figure out a way to explain to me why MS elevated Techs have told me the opposite info as to (Phillipine MS Tech support) 'you really should do it now' vs. (US WIN-10 Tech)'better not as the team isn't finished yet with the process': when it comes to connecting my Google Domain App email + my two Gmail accounts nested warmly in Outlook 365 (2016), with www.outlook.live.com and how does this function like or become an Exchange Account (without an exchange server in my study), and then 3-way syncing the Android 7.0 calendar that i make 995% of my entries on, with my apparently 3 different(?) Google calendars, the Outlook calendar, and linking it back to my Android 7 Galaxy S7 Edge, (I really do miss my Note 7!).

    Well that's the conundrum.

    It seems that during the aggressive MS 'use-one-log-in-to-open-everything' phase, I apparently now have a Gmail log-in, opening an outlook.live.com Mailbox web app.
    I think that about covers it....,
    Any thoughts on a good start point, or path to follow thats systematic and logical?

  • MAIDA PRICE Says:

    The clearest computer instructions I have ever used. Your site is now bookmarked.

  • Frankie Says:

    I had Windows XP well past the date Microsoft suggested, but that was because it was familiar and I knew how to use the limited number of programs I really needed to use or wanted to for that matter. When I had to buy a new computer, it came with Windows 7 and the look of that, to me, was foreign. I was able to have it set up like the Windows I was used to from the 90's and I still only use a limited number of programs, because that is all I need and want to. I find no real reason to move to Windows 10, because my computer runs nicely (no jinx!) and because Windows 10 looks so foreign to me with its display and "apps" that is seems to be pushing. I am not technologically inclined even though I am from the generation that is supposed to know all techie devices, but I do say let's have a Windows 10 that is easy to use, not a spy risk, and able to be changed to a design more familiar to users who enjoy the simplicity of older Windows, but still need to use a computer to stay at least within reach of today's fast paced world.

  • Donna Diederich Says:

    Is there a PC Windows 10 for Dummies out yet?

  • Donald E Maglio II. Says:

    It would be nice if this was available in a PDF download.
    Just a thought. Thanks.

  • Ann Bear Says:

    NEED Windows 10 Manual for my HP Officejet Pro 8610 Printer.
    If I wanted to spend the evening reading, I'd go up the street to the Library! HELP

  • ian kirkham Says:

    I would like to print out the information if possible see note below thanking you . I am happy with the information I have received

  • ian kirkham Says:

    I was hoping to print out the information how to operate the computer with o s 10 how do I go about this to obtain a printed copy I have a printer

  • Ramscher Says:

    My serious problem is that: in Windows 10, the default text color is light-grey and is very hard to read. How could I change the color in black or dark-blue, or another color, like in Win. 7?

  • Wally Says:

    A gold mine of information!!!

    Thanks

  • Wally Says:

    Hello,

    Long time Apple user considering switching to Windows for many reasons.

    This "How to Use Windows 10" web site is a gold mine information in one location!!!

    Thank you for making it available.

    Best regards,
    Wally

  • Esther Smilowitz Says:

    I can not get the original solitaire card game on my computer why?

  • Dan will Says:

    Compared to apple, this is a bad joke. I can't figure out how it works. Maybe the problems is I am running it on a virtual machine

  • Kandau Says:

    Pls this page to my facebook page so i can help you to sell your product in my bigcommerce business profile page.

  • Henry Danecki Says:

    Good morning,
    I received new Toshiba Satelite with Windows 10. I do not work with the computer, so it is completely new Subject. Please advise me, how can I start to learn all these magic terms, operations( Copy, Bookmarks etc.) Is there any book to teach about windows 10 and all these subjects?
    Thank you very much.
    Henry Danecki

  • Jamal A. Zaeed Says:

    Need to learn about laptop operating with details

  • Bill Liedlch Says:

    Thanks for the tips!

    I have an issue that I see others also have. The start menu does not display the default tile set. It was missing altogether after a past update, and then reappeared with one tile, Edge, in it after another update.

    Could you recommend a method to restore the default tile set?

    Thanks!!

  • Patty Says:

    Thank you so much for all the information.

  • David Brumley Says:

    Thank you for this excellent resource.

  • dinio Says:

    you are a Genius even more than a genius. You are to good Mr Avram Piltch

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