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More Components How-To

  • How-Tos: SSDs vs. hard drives vs. hybrids: Which storage tech is right for you?

    In times past, choosing the best PC storage option required merely selecting the highest-capacity hard drive one could afford. If only life were still so simple! The fairly recent rise of solid-state drives and hybrid drives (which mix standard hard drives with solid-state memory) have significantly altered the storage landscape, creating a cornucopia of confusing options for the everyday consumer.

  • How-Tos: Turn your flash drive into a portable PC survival kit

    If you're using your flash drive as a vehicle for simple file transfers, you're missing out on one of the single-best roles one of these wee data buckets can fulfill. Indeed, hardcore enthusiasts know that simple flash drives are perfect portable repositories for all the software that can breathe life into an otherwise ailing PC.

  • How-Tos: DVD-less Snow Leopard installation on older Mac

    Reader Steven Harris is trying to do the right thing by his family, but technical barriers prevent it. He writes:

  • How-Tos: Answer Line: I must run this program on computers other than my own

    Lyman E Bertsch needs to run an application on a relative's computer. Installing the program isn't an option. Can Lyman run the program off a flash drive?

  • How-Tos: Bugs & Fixes: Turning power off turns trouble on

    Sometimes, you can't win. The very thing you do to prevent potential trouble winds up causing you grief instead. Such was the case for me in today's episode of Bugs & Fixes. It's a story that also features a surprise ending.

  • How-Tos: Find out what's using all the space on your hard drive

    Problem: Your hard drive is getting full.

  • How-Tos: Remains of the Day: Born in the USA

    New iMacs are coming from inside the country! Elsewhere, Apple lets you buy iPhone 5s until your heart is content, and Ashton Kutcher's Steve Jobs impression is a little eerie. The remainders for Tuesday, December 4, 2012 are just dancing in the dark.

  • How-Tos: What's the best file system for an external drive?

    Cyberknight asked the Hard Drives, NAS Drives, Storage forum if a new flash drive should be formatted in FAT32 or NTFS.

  • How-Tos: Restore your data from the cloud

    Online backups are a useful component of a well-balanced backup strategy. Whether you rely primarily on cloud storage for backups (see "Backup Basics") or use the cloud to supplement local backups such as bootable duplicates (see "Bulletproof Backups"), it's crucial to understand how you will go about restoring your data after disaster strikes.

  • How-Tos: How to restore data from Time Machine in Mountain Lion

    Now that you've been using Time Machine regularly to back up your computer, you should be fully prepared if your Mac crashes or if you need to move data from one Mac to another. Restoring data from Time Machine is just as easy as backing things up in the first place.

  • How-Tos: Set up Time Machine in Mountain Lion

    If you value your data—whether it’s some perfect photos you took last weekend, your entire music collection on iTunes, or your draft of the next great American novel—you must stay on top of regular system backup. One of the easiest ways of doing so is to use OS X’s built-in backup program, Time Machine. Time Machine works with your Mac and an external drive to save important documents, photos, and system files regularly. Apart from keeping spares of every file, Time Machine maintains a record of how your system looked on any given day, so you can easily put everything back the way it was if something goes wrong.

  • How-Tos: Prepare your business for digital disaster

    Note: This article was originally published in late September 2012. However, following hurricane Sandy and increased concerns about disaster preparedness, we have decided to reprint this guide. If you have any suggestions not covered in the article, please share your ideas in a comment below.

  • How-Tos: Can I recover some files and securely wipe others on a crashed hard drive?

    Zeterjons asked the Utilities forum how to rescue files off of a physically crashed hard drive, while making sure that other files on that hard drive are destroyed beyond rescue.

  • How-Tos: How to free up iCloud storage space

    When Apple introduced iCloud in 2011, it announced that every customer with an Apple ID would receive 5GB of iCloud storage space for free. You can add more storage at a rate of $2 per gigabyte per year, in 10GB, 20GB, or 50GB increments. But if you're not interested in ponying up extra cash for iCloud storage, that 5GB can quickly get tight.

  • How-Tos: Windows Explorer says DVD drive has been changed or moved

    What do you do if the DVD drive in your PC or laptop simply stops working? This was the problem faced by one of our readers. When he wrote in our Helproom Editor explained what to do when Windows Explorer says your PC's DVD drive has been changed or moved.

  • How-Tos: Automatically save Gmail attachments to Dropbox or another cloud service

    Reader Meg wants to know how she can save her Gmail folders to her Dropbox account.

  • How-Tos: How to find which hard drive fits your laptop

    Here we give you a few tips and pointers to show you how to find which hard drive fits your laptop.

  • How-Tos: How to Securely Erase Your Hard Drive

    The siren has sung and you've finally succumbed to her call: You're the proud owner of a shiny new PC; a faster, better SSD; or a bigger, better hard drive. It's time to toss your old equipment in the trash and start playing with your new toys, right? Not so fast.

  • How-Tos: Dropbox Two-Step Verification: Hands On

    Two-step account verification is a hot topic after hackers nearly wiped out the digital life of tech journalist Mat Honan recently, and Dropbox is the latest online service to enable the added security measure.

  • How-Tos: PC is running slow and noisy

    Is your PC running slowly and making a lot of noise? It could be overheating. Our Helproom Editor explains how to deal with an overheating PC.


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