Brad Wardell's site for talking about the customization of Windows.
Frogboy's Articles In Personal Computing » Page 2
June 4, 2016 by Frogboy
Got a Kindle Oasis. 

I won’t bore you with a full on review because there’s a ton of reviews that basically say it’s wonderful but too expensive.

It is a lot more expensive than the other Kindles but the screen is noticeably better thanks to having a more consistent series of lights and it is also noticeably lighter.

If you do a lot of reading on the Kindle and you’re not price sensitive, get it.
March 27, 2016 by Frogboy
How many times have you written something amazing in a forum editor only to have the page crash/disappear/self refresh?

Just happened to me. I must have had a 3 page article I was writing regarding debugging technology just go poof as the forum page refreshed.

GRRR.
February 29, 2016 by Frogboy
I got the Dell 5K monitor. It’s only 27 inches but it’s just gorgeous.  I hooked it up to an NVIDIA 980TI and have been playing Ashes with it.

Below is a screenshot I took that I lowered to a more reasonable resolution so you can see the extra detail you get when running at that resolution.



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Recommended!
January 18, 2016 by Frogboy
For some months users have complained about the Surface Pro 4 consuming several % per hour of CPU while sleeping.  In December, Microsoft indicated that they were working on the problem.

In December, Intel released a driver update to their Skylake drivers. By default, these drivers won’t work on a Surface Pro.  However, users who download the .ZIP version, extract and then update the drivers via device manager can enjoy the benefits today.

 

The Results

As y...
January 15, 2016 by Frogboy
Is Microsoft serious about its online media stores?

 

Movies & TV Let’s say you want to buy an episode of Rick & Morty.  This is what you get if you use the Microsoft store:



No previews. No star ratings.  Not even movies get a star rating.  The little “i” brings up a barely formatted tooltip. How did this even ship?

This is what the home page looks like:



 

Music Going over to music the situation is better.  You g...
January 14, 2016 by Frogboy
My Microsoft Surface is a constant companion.  It is absolutely central to my workflow.

One of the challenges I’ve had with it is battery life.  There’s a lot of things you can do to help with your battery life but one simple thing I’ve done, for now, is to set the max CPU when on battery to 99%. 

Setting the max CPU to 99% prevents the CPU from going into Turbo mode.  For me, this accomplishes two things:

(1) I get roughly an extra hour of battery ...
September 12, 2015 by Frogboy
I love my Surface Pro 3.  Windows 10 has transformed it from something I occasionally fiddled with to my primary mobile device (replacing my iPad and MacBook Pro combo for trips).

But it is, by no means, perfect.

The weaknesses of the Surface Pro 3 include:

It is almost 1.8 pounds.  That's really too heavy to use as a tablet for an extended period of time.While Windows 10 has greatly improved the issue of it getting hot and the fan blariung, the fact it has a fan means ext...
September 8, 2015 by Frogboy
Does your laptop or tablet run out of battery while it’s supposed to be asleep?

You can find out why thanks to a fairly obscure but relatively new feature in Windows.

Step 1: Open a command prompt in adminstrative mode

Step 2: Go to a temp directory (like cd\temp)

Step 3: Type powercfig /SleepStudy

This will create a file in the current directory.  Open that file in your web browser and you will find out why.

Common causes:

Notifications. Even while sl...
March 25, 2015 by Frogboy
Windows 10 is coming along nicely. A definite nice step from Windows 8.1 (once the bugs are out).

Still, not all is well yet.

The Windows 10 skin



The Windows 10 skin has some issues. The title bar is thicker than some apps expect (such as Microsoft Live Writer). Stardock’s WindowBlinds has had to tackle this issue for years.  I suspect WindowBlinds will be making a comeback with Windows 10 as the title bar and borders in windows 10 are a combination of not pretty and a ...
February 25, 2015 by Frogboy
Disclaimer:

I work for Stardock which makes Start10.  That means I have a vested interest in the quality of the Windows 10 start menu.  The better the start menu is, the fewer copies of Start10 we sell. On the other hand, the worse their start menu is, the fewer copies of everything else we make will sell.  So overall, I would prefer that Microsoft make Windows as good as they can.

At least it’s there Windows 8 didn’t have a start menu at all. It had a start screen. As ...
February 24, 2015 by Frogboy
I have seen the future and it is good.  I like Windows 10. A lot.

I’m not loving their Start menu and while there is hope it will improve, it is good to know that Start10 is available.

Here is the current Windows 10 build with their Start menu:



I have a lot of problems with this.  First off, most desktop users are using the start menu to get to their stuff.  Stuff is more than just apps.  The Windows 10 menu is a “Modern” app which means no context menus....
January 15, 2015 by Frogboy
I hadn’t used Windows XP in years.  It’s easy to get nostalgic about how great Windows was back then.  Then you load it up and try to search for a file and you’re greeted by a dog.
December 31, 2014 by Frogboy
Naturally I’m waiting until the last day of the year to finally write this.

If you’re looking for a drab, properly edited, PR approved article, this is not that article.  So hang on as we do a skim through of the hyperbole of awesomeness that’s been going on this year.

Let me get this part out of the way: If you’re a gaming journalist, we’re going to be at GDC with a suite. In that suite will be Soren Johnson (Civ IV), Bruce Shelley (Civ, Age of Empires), Dan Baker (co-author of ...
September 10, 2014 by Frogboy
My desktop has 3 monitors with lots and lots of windows.  On Windows 8, it gets really fatiguing picking out the active window.  That’s because Windows 8, unlike Windows 7, doesn’t have shadows.  It’s one of my biggest pet peeves with Windows 8 visually.

This wasn’t a problem with Windows 7 because each window had its own drop shadow which changed based on what was the active window. As a result, at a glance, you could pick out the active window.

To a...
June 10, 2014 by Frogboy
There have been endless articles on how Windows 8 sacrificed desktop usability for being a better tablet OS.  The problem is, it’s not a very good tablet OS either.

The problem has nothing to do with Metro per se. The problem is that Windows still, at its heart, behaves like a 1990s OS.  Let me walk you through some things that I think, regardless of whether you’re a Windows, Android, iOS fan you can agree that these are inexplicably bad things.

For full disclosure, I have bo...