At the workplace, our productivity hinges on how well we can use a computer and how well it functions for us. ET offers some easy ways to solve common issues that plague a workplace PC and a few accessories that can help improve efficiency.
The free launchy (www.launchy.net) app is a no-frills , easy-touse launcher that makes it easy to do multiple things on your PC using the keyboard. Just hit ‘Alt + Space’ to bring Launchy up and type in what you want. You can launch apps, open files and folders as well as navigate web pages. There are tons of third party plug-ins available that adds functionality. It’s available for Windows, MAC and Linux.
LEARN KEYBOARD SHORTCUTS
Keyboard shortcuts can vary across the software you use. To find and learn these shortcuts you can head to Shortcutfoo (www.shortcutfoo.com) – here, you can do drill exercises to memorise keyboard shortcuts for various programs. You can also download and install software such as CheatSheet for MAC and Ultimate Windows 8 Shortcuts to quickly view all the available shortcuts for your software.
The free plan from Crashplan (www.crashplan.com) lets you take a backup of multiple computers to a connected hard drive. Importantly, it offers incremental (backup of all existing data) as well as differential (backup only of changed files/folders) backups. You can also set automated backups that run in the background unattended.
MAC OS X
The built-in Time Machine backup feature lets you connect an external hard drive and use it to backup not just the contents of your entire harddrive but also a system ‘image’ – a complete current state of the system. You can also try out the free app called SuperDuper! (http:// goo.gl/rdrUq). It offers additional features like a selective file and folder backup and has a built-in scheduler to automate the backup process.
AUTOMATED COMPUTER MAINTAINANCE
A free app called Slimcleaner (http:// slimcleaner.com) offers an easy-to-use interface for maintaining your PC’s performance . The software finds and removes junk files, prevents errors, finds duplicate files and optimises your overall system. You can run an on-demand scan or schedule it to be done at a particular set time – every day or on any chosen day of the week. You can individually select what folders and sections should be analysed and it comes with a range of scanning tools for your computer.
MAC OS X
For MAC OS X users, a US$ 19 app called Cocktail (www.maintain.se/ cocktail) allows you to schedule maintenance on daily or weekly basis. All you need to do is select the specific tasks and optimisation tool that should run at the specified time and the app will take care of the rest. You can even customise the look and feature of finder , dock, login window and modify various hidden settings. Cocktail also offers another useful feature that allows you to choose what happens post the optimization task is complete: you can log out, shut down or restart your device.
BULLGUARD SPAMFILTER FOR WINDOWS
Bullguard Spamfilter is a free and easy-to-use software that seamlessly integrates with your Outlook, Outlook Express, Windows Mail or Mozilla Thunderbird email setup. It blocks out all phishing mails, viruses and foreign language spam mails. It even gives you the option to create a blacklist to block email from a particular source as well as a whitelist if you choose to block all mails. (www.bullguard.com)
SPAMSIEVE FOR MAC OS X
Although SpamSieve is a paid software (US$ 30), it is worth the investment. Not only does it integrate with various email clients (Apple mail, Microsoft Entourage , Outlook etc), but also learns and adapts to your inbox to improve spam detection. It integrates with your address book to create a whitelist of your contacts and provides the option to create a blacklist as well. It even scans attachments to identify and block spam content. (http://goo.gl/wNAXn)
SOURCE: The Economic Times