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what pc laptop would you now recommend
October 31, 2014
12:09 pm
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Barbara Dalderis
Northern CA
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Good morning,

I am replacing my old PC laptop.  I’m thinking about an Acer Aspire 15.6 screen with a big HH , good memory, a cd burner.  Price seems to run $500-$800.  Very fun are sold with Win 7.  I like to buy at Costco because of there easy return policy and 2-year support.  Would I be making a mistake buying a PC with Win 8.1?  I use my laptop around the house at times and I take it with me when I travel in our Roadtrek.  I also take my Samsung Note tablet.  Carrying a laptop when we travel is no problem.  And I like to use Photoshop Elements, Streets and Trips, Quicken and a few other programs when we travel.  So the laptop works for me.

Are you still a fan of Win 8.1 and have the updates to it helped us folks who are used to Win 7?  Thanks.

Barbara

October 31, 2014
8:29 pm
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MrsGeek
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Hey Barb,

I think what you’ve chosen sounds fine. Yes, the 8.1 update to Windows makes it more familiar to Windows 7 users. 

I love my Lenovo Yoga – SOO light, and a good 6 hours of battery life. Jim loves his Microsoft Surface Pro – so small to carry around, yet when he plugs it into USB keyboard, mouse, and big monitor – it’s a full size computer experience. Both of them are around $1,000 though.

November 1, 2014
4:37 pm
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Barbara Dalderis
Northern CA
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I went to Costco and bought an HP laptop with Win 8.1.  I have installed a few things and have a couple of questions.  When you first use the Win 8.1 the program forces you to add a password.  Now each time I leave the computer for a few minutes I have to put in the password again to continue.  I found a fix online which I used but it really isn’t working.  Do you know of a way around using a password with Win 8.1?  I never used a password with any other Win programs.

The next issue is the Microsoft account you are forced to open so you can use apps, like their apps, ecloud and email, calendar.  I use eMClient for email which syncs with Google and Dropbox and Chrome.  The Microsoft account is so all of your Win 8 computers can sync. I sync my Smartphone, Samsung Note Table, home desktop and my old Win 7 laptop with Google, Dropbox, Chrome.  So I’m not interested in this Microsoft account.    And at this time it won’t sync with any of my other devices.  Do you know how I should handle the MS Account requirement?.  I had a hard time downloading Dropbox for windows because Win 8.1 wanted to add it as an app.  And I couldn’t unless I opened a MS Account.  I finally was able to download it directly from Chrome at http://www.dropbox.com using desktop.  I don’t understand why or how the MS account works to my advantage.  I haven’t found a clear discussion of the login password or MS account on the web.  

I bought a couple of ebooks about using Win 8.1 but I haven’t found a discussion on this particular issue.  Any help will be appreciated .  We’ve had rain in CA the last couple of day!!!!

Barbara

No. CalConfused

November 3, 2014
8:43 am
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MrsGeek
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Hi Barbara,

Your question about not using a password and the one about not using the Microsoft Onedrive account are connected. If you’re using the Microsoft Onedrive account you must use a password because that is connecting you to the online account.

You can use Windows 8.1 without using the Onedrive account. That’s called a local account. To switch to using the computer with a local account instead of the Onedrive account:

  • Find the settings for your User Account.  It’s in your control panel. I prefer to get there using search. So, from your Start screen just type Settings. You should see a listing of matches – click on PC Settings. From PC Settings, click on Accounts. You’re looking for the screen like mine below. Then click on Disconnect and follow the prompts. This removes the connection to your Onedrive account allowing you to use your computer with a Local account.

Image Enlarger

Using Windows 8 connected to the Onedrive account actually is very nice once you start using your Onedrive account. It is cloud storage that is integrated into your Filing system. But I understand that you already have your sharing systems worked out with Dropbox etc. So using Windows with a local account will be the old familiar way.

Once you’re using a Local account, you should be able to set the password to none.

Let me know if that helps

November 3, 2014
8:46 am
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MrsGeek
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Oh .. and we do have a booklet on Windows 8. We’ve only used it in combination with a hands-on class – more of a workbook than a text. But, you’re welcomed to get it if you want. I’d love some feedback as to whether it’s worthwhile as a standalone text.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/4ogi…..8.pdf?dl=0

November 3, 2014
10:25 am
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Barbara Dalderis
Northern CA
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Chris,  thank you so much for the Win 8.1 information.  It really helps.  I really appreciate the booklet from your Boot Camp as well.  I downloaded it and I will read it.  I’ll let you know any comments I have.  I was ready to take this computer back, I dislike Win8.1 so much.  This is when I really appreciate having a membership with Geeks on Tour.  You are there to help when I most need it!!

I somehow figured out how to log on to Win 8 using my gmail account and changed my log in to a four digit number.  So that helps.  Since I still have to use a password I’m assuming that is my MS account.  After reading your comments I will leave it as is for now.  I’m doing okay just working in the desktop.  So my new goal will be trying out the START view (page looks like apps).  I’ll read your booklet and I now have a couple of ebooks on Win 8.1 out of the library and will try to read some of it.  So I can better decide how to move forward.

I’ll keep you informed . . . thanks.

BarbaraSmile

November 5, 2014
10:03 am
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MrsGeek
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I look forward to hearing more!

If you Disconnected your Windows 8 account (like in the screenshot) you should be able to use it without any password at all. That sounds a bit confusing to be using it with a Google account.

November 5, 2014
4:24 pm
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Barbara Dalderis
Northern CA
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Well I’m beginning to understand how Win 8.1 works.  I’ve been following your Boot Camp booklet and it really helps.  I now think of Win 8 as the Desktop is really Win 7 and the START screen is the new Win 8.  I’m working primarily in Desktop and trying to get all my programs installed.  I’ll move into START a little slower.  

I did findLaugh something neat for my new laptop . . . a bluetooth mouse.  I paired it with the laptop.  I like that it doesn’t take up a USB port and it works on any surface.  It’s made by Kensington.  Very neat.  

I am registered under my gmail account on the laptop and I just have to use my pin once to open Windows.  I still haven’t been able to verify my gmail though.  Win send me verification notices and when I click it says the email address is correct.  I may stop down at a Microsoft store to get that squared away.

But with your help I am progressing!!

November 9, 2014
9:40 am
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MrsGeek
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Did you see on page 18 of the workbook how to set Windows 8 to boot up straight to the desktop? 

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