sercraig

I edit and write documentation, tutorials, user guides, and more.

One of the coolest tricks I learned recently is how to close all of the open browser tabs in #Safari on my iPhone. This will work for any device running #iOS (#iPhone, #iPad, #iPod touch).

Either press and hold the Tab button in the lower-right corner of Safari:

Safari tab button

Or with all tabs visible press and hold Done:

Safari all tabs on display

A pop-up will appear with the option for you to close all open tabs at once.

A friend shared this Medium story with me. It's too good not to mention here. Basically: Avoid trash, refocus, read.

EDIT (adding because it deserves attention): This Gizmodo piece on cutting the Facebook, Amazon, Google, Apple, and Microsoft out of your life.

2nd EDIT (because I can't believe I forgot this): Microsoft cybersecurity expert says not to use Internet Explorer.

I currently have a small stack of For Dummies books from the library next to my side of the bed: Artificial Intelligence, Blockchain, Algorithms, and Machine Learning.

#reading #microsoft #google #amazon #apple #facebook

Windows and Mac computers come with built-in features to zoom in on areas of the screen if such magnification is needed. These #accessibility tools are included for users with vision limitations so they can better use their computers. Magnifier comes on #Windows-based computers and Zoom is available on #Macs if text or images are too small to see clearly.

Magnifier for Windows 10

Press Windows logo key and Plus sign (+) on the keyboard to turn on Magnifier. Press Windows logo key + Esc to turn it off. Or, select Start > Settings > East of Access > Magnifier and toggle the feature on or off.

The Views menu provides you with different modes for zooming in on sections of your screen. I'm partial to Lens, which acts as a magnifying glass you move across the screen with your mouse/trackpad.

Magnifier for Windows 7

If you still use Windows 7, Magnifier can be accessed two ways. Select Start button and then type Magnifier in the search field. Or, select Start button > All Programs > Accessories > Ease of Access > Magnifier. Press Windows logo key + Esc to turn it off.

(Just a friendly reminder, Microsoft will no longer provide updates or support for Windows 7 starting January 2020. Extended support is available but you will have to pay for it.)

Zoom for Macs

Open the Apple menu and select System Preferences > Accessibility > Zoom. Tick the box Use keyboard shortcuts to zoom to turn on this feature. Once Zoom is enabled, press Option-Command-8 to toggle zoom on/off, Option-Command-Equals sign (=) to zoom in, or Option-Command-Minus sign (–) to zoom out. Click your mouse cursor on a different portion of the screen and use the aforementioned shortcuts to zoom in/out on the new section.

I prefer this full screen method over the picture-in-picture option. This tutorial explains all available Zoom features in detail.

(This works on my #MacBook Pro running #macOS 10.14.3.)

Apple has released an update to resolve the major #FaceTime bug. This is good news. Be sure to update your devices as soon as possible.

Some good news, it is reported that #Apple will compensate the teenager who first discovered the bug.

Today I received an #email pretending to be from our host at work (Rackspace). It claimed that I've reached my limit and I had to click a link to address this issue, otherwise my account would be suspended.

There were obvious tells that this message was completely phony and likely a #phishing scam. Per the FTC, phishing “is when a scammer uses fraudulent emails or texts, or copycat websites to get you to share valuable personal information – such as account numbers, Social Security numbers, or your login IDs and passwords. Scammers use your information to steal your money or your identity or both.”

I knew today's email was malicious because:

  • Even though the message claimed to be from Rackspace, it was not sent from someone with a Rackspace email domain. It came from a random user from a random email domain.
  • It was not addressed to me specifically. It started “Dear User.”
  • It contained several spelling and grammatical errors.
  • The URL previewed when I hovered my mouse pointer over the Please click here link in the email body was a random URL, not something specific for Rackspace.

Legitimate emails from actual companies will come directly from the companies. They will never ask for your personal information or ask you to visit a website other than the company's trusted site. The email's text will also be clear, professional sounding, and free of spelling and grammatical errors.

While this one was blatant, some I've seen are pretty convincing. A few weeks ago I received an email from “Amazon.” I had to read it a few times and think about my recent orders; it was close to Christmas.

If you receive such a message, don't click on anything, don't reply, don't share any details. Some malicious emails may come with file attachments (word processing documents, PDFs, EXE files, etc.); don't download anything. In all cases, simply delete the email. Also, don't forward the message to support, as there's a risk the person you send it to clicks what shouldn't be clicked.

A message arrived in my inbox today from the Google+ Team. It seems April 2, 2019 is the official day that consumer/personal accounts will be shut down.

If anyone still has content there, you should download it to save it. Instructions to complete this can be found here.

Given this deadline, it makes me wonder if #Google's April Fools' Day prank will be “just kidding, Google+ is here to stay!”

If you're having trouble with your internet or connecting to a website/web-based service, support may request you to send over #traceroute details. This information can help diagnose your technical issue.

This #Windows utility allows you to trace how an Internet Protocol (IP) packet takes across a network. To collect this information:

  • Open the Command Prompt by using the keyboard shortcut Windows key + R and entering cmd in the resulting window.
  • Type tracert google.com at the prompt. NOTE: google.com is used here as an example; you'll enter the URL or IP address of the site/service you're having trouble accessing.
  • Wait until the Command Prompt says the traceroute is complete. This may take several minutes.

Here is a sample of what should result from running the utility:

traceroute example

To copy this information:

  • Right-click the C: icon in the upper-left corner of the window. This will open a context menu. Select Edit > Select All.
  • Right-click the icon again and select Edit > Copy. This copies the traceroute information.
  • Paste the content into the body of an email to send to support. Alternately, you can paste it into a word processing document (Word, Notepad), save it, and then attach this file to your email.

Remember, when seeking help from any support department, more information is better. Help them help you. When you send over this, or any other information for that matter, explain your issue with as much detail as possible.

This utility also comes with options that can be added onto the initial command entered into Command Prompt:

traceroute options

Support will explain if any are needed for further details.

I recently happened across an interesting gallery on ZDNet that presents the many different Chromium-based browsers. The most commonly known and widely used #Chromium browser is #Google #Chrome. But if you like to try out new software (it me) and prefer the look and feel of Chrome but are concerned with Google's data collection practices (it me 'gain) you can try these browsers out as alternatives.

In the past I was partial to #Firefox, and then used Chrome when it was shiny and new. These days Firefox is my default browser at work; its Quantum iteration is fast and offers a wide variety of extensions.

Over the last few days, thanks to the aforementioned gallery, I am trialing the Epic Privacy Browser. This browser is dedicated to protecting your privacy and data. I'm using it now as I type this post on my Windows 10 laptop and am very happy with it so far. It shows in real-time how many trackers it blocks when you navigate to websites. Curious to see how it run on my MacBook Pro at home.

Shout out to Vivaldi, too. They're doing good things in that browser.

The recently announced #FaceTime bug is scary. In short, you can eavesdrop on the person you're calling even before they pick up the call. Apple says a fix is coming “later this week,” however in the meantime protect yourself and disable FaceTime.

FaceTime for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch

  • Tap Settings.
  • Tap FaceTime.
  • Toggle the FaceTime option to Off.

FaceTime for Mac

  • Open the FaceTime app.
  • Select FaceTime > Turn FaceTime Off in the menu.