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Posted on Oct 18, 2013 in Newsletter | 0 comments

TWT Newsletter NG – Issue 5 – Halloween fun with your Windows PC

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TWT Newsletter NG – Issue 5

Welcome to the October 2013 TWT Newsletter

Heading into the last quarter of 2013, there’s still plenty to look forward to before the end of the year. Windows 8.1 lands this month, fixing at least some of the complaints that users have with the controversial operating system. This month the TWT Newsletter shows you how to make more of your Halloween, we’ve even got a video exclusive for you!

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In this months issue:-

    What’s new at Top-Windows-Tutorials.com?
    Halloween fun with your Windows PC
    Tip of the Month – Master copy and paste!
    Free Utility of the Month – Evernote
    PC game maker Valve announces Steambox and SteamOS
   

 

What’s new at Top-Windows-Tutorials.com?

Just two new tutorials this month as we gear up for Windows 8.1. If you’ve bought a new Windows PC recently, chances are it’s a laptop or portable model. There’s also a good chance that it didn’t have an optical drive, making using some of your older software difficult. The Alcohol 52% program goes some way towards solving this, and that’s the program we focused on this month.

 

picture Alcohol 52% Tutorials

We posted two tutorials for this powerful CD/DVD image making program. Alcohol 52% (and its big brother, Alcohol 120%) has nothing to do with potent beverages. This handy utility can make image files out of your CD/DVD discs. It can also ‘mount’ or use those image files as if they were real CD or DVD discs. Windows 8 includes similar functionality to this built-in, but Alcohol 52% is more flexible and powerful and of course works with Windows 7, Vista and XP too. Check out our tutorials for the program here.

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Halloween fun with your Windows PC

Here at Top-Windows-Tutorials.com we love to tell you about how versatile your PC is. As the nights get longer and colder this time of year, now is the perfect time to make the most of the versatility of your computer. Your PC’s great for helping Halloween go with a bang, here are just some ways you and your family can have a more spooky holiday this year.

Paint, colour and create with Tuxpaint – Kids love to colour pictures, but rather than just printing them and wasting paper, why not let them colour them in on your PC? If you have a touch screen PC this can be even more fun, but it’s still pretty fun with a mouse too. Using the child-friendly paint program Tux Paint, kids can get super creative Try this site for some Halloween themed colouring pages. If you want to add those to Tuxpaint, we made this quick tutorial to show you how.

Can’t decide on a costume? – If your kids are struggling to decide what they want to dress as this year, how about some dressing up games to inspire them? There are a whole heap of free to play Halloween themed dress-up games available on this web page.  

Spooky games – PC’s have the best games and there’s no shortage of spooky thrills to be had. Of course, not every spooky game is going to be appropriate for younger children, so here are three games we’ve picked out that should suit most ages.

Freddi Fish 2 – The Case of the Haunted Schoolhouse – Help Freddi solve the mystery of the haunted schoolhouse in this fun adventure game with bright and colourful graphics, suitable for all children aged 3 and up.

Slender – The Eight Pages – Dare you enter the forest and search for the eight pages? This chilling free adventure game tasks players with finding eight pieces of a notebook about the mythical Slenderman. As the brave player walks around the dark forest, he/she will be stalked relentlessly by the Slenderman, who will become more desperate to stop them the more pieces they find. While this game features no adult content or language, it can be quite unsettling and spooky and parental advisory is strongly recommended. One for older children and teenagers!

Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs – A new first person horror game that will drag you to the depths of greed, power and madness. Claiming to be the “Darkest, most horrific tale ever told in a videogame”, this is one game strictly for adults. Play it now, if you dare!

Overdone the Halloween candy? – If you are worried your children ate too many sweets and chocolates this year, how about a PC game that encourages them to get more active? Stepmania is the PC’s best dancing and exercise game. Playable on virtually any PC, all you need is a dance controller (typically those designed for Playstation 2 consoles work well) and an adapter (such as this one for Playstation 2 dance controllers). Download the game for free along with several free song packs and get your kids moving again. Really creative kids can even compose their own dance routines!

Whatever you get up to this year, we hope you have a fantastic time. Stay safe and don’t have nightmares!

 

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Tip of the Month – Master copy and paste!

This is one of those fundamental skills that too many Windows users neglect. No matter what version of the operating system you are using, Copy and paste is such a fundamentally useful skill that every Windows user should take the time to master it. Any text that has been entered in one program can simply be copied to another program using a few mouse clicks. If you haven’t learned this key skill yet, we highly recommend you watch this tutorial. You will find many tasks on your computer are much easier and faster when you master this skill.

 

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Free Utility of the Month – Evernote

Our favourite note-taking application is now bigger and better than ever! Evernote 5 for Windows has over 100 new features, a redesigned interface and is faster and friendlier. If you’re not familiar with Evernote, we strongly suggest you check out this great little free application. With Evernote you can take notes on your desktop PC and organise them into notebooks. These notebooks are then available to you in the cloud. If you have a smartphone you can access your Evernote notebooks there, meaning you can take notes while you are out and about.

See a poster for a concert you want to attend? Use your smartphone camera and Evernote and the poster will be clipped and saved for later. Type up your grannies old recipe book on your PC, then have all those delicious recipes to hand on your smartphone anywhere you go. Save business cards, web addresses, PDF documents and more. An essential tool for students, business professionals or anyone who just wants to improve their memory. Check out Evernote 5 for Windows here.

 

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Windows 8.1 update

Windows 8.1 is due for release this month and Windows 8 users will be able to download the update on the 17th October. The upgrade will be free for all Windows 8 users. Potential customers will also be able to buy Windows 8.1 on the 18th of October, either pre-installed on a PC or as a standalone product for upgrading an existing PC or building your own.

We’ve spent a few moments with a final build of Windows 8.1 and little has changed from the preview. Microsoft have added some prompts to help bewildered first time users find their way around the OS more easily, but everything seems evolutionary rather than revolutionary. Look out for our updated Windows 8.1 tutorials which will be appearing on the site this month.

 

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PC game maker Valve announces Steambox and SteamOS

Windows has always been the very best operating system for gamers, with the most cutting edge multimedia support and the best driver support in the industry. One of the most popular gaming services on the PC is Steam. Steam is an online store/content distribution platform that specialises in games. Run by Valve corporation, Steam was once strictly Windows only, but in recent years it has opened its doors to Mac and Linux users too.

Now, Valve have set their sights on conquering the living room with the announcement that they are to manufacture “Steam Box” games console style computers running their own, Linux based operating system called SteamOS. SteamOS will also be available for free, as a full blown alternative to Windows and other operating systems.

Could this new, SteamOS cause gamers to switch from Windows? It’s possible that some might, but we think it’s probably unlikely that too many will. Windows has a huge back-catalogue of games that cannot easily run on Linux and many cutting edge games use DirectX, which is a propriety Microsoft technology. Most of us aren’t lucky enough to be able to dedicate a PC just to gaming either, so that means we still need Windows for many other programs that just aren’t available on Linux. Nevertheless, SteamOS has the potential to shake things up at Microsoft, as the PC gaming market, which seemed all safe and secure, will now have a serious competitor. After the disastrous Games for Windows Live service, Microsoft clearly need to invest in PC gaming if they want to stay relevant and many gamers feel that their focus is too much on their games consoles and not enough on games for Windows.

That concludes our newsletter for October. On behalf of the team here at TWT, I’d like to thank you for reading and for your continued support. The TWT Newsletter will return on the 10th November 2013 and will bring you more tips, tricks and techniques to help you get the best out of your PC, be it Windows XP, Vista, Windows 7 or Windows 8. We hope that you found this newsletter informative and useful. If you did not then please let us know why, you can contact us by visiting this page. If you have enjoyed this newsletter, feel free to pass it on to all your friends and family, or better still encourage them to sign up for their own copy. Until next month, keep checking Top-Windows-Tutorials.com and enjoy happy, safe and stress-free computing!

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