Window (computing)

How to Enable and Use the Virtual Touchpad on Windows 10

Windows 10’s Creators Update added a new virtual touchpad that works like the touch keyboard. You can use this touchpad to control the mouse cursor on a device with a touch screen.

To enable the virtual touchpad, either long-press or right-click the taskbar and select “Show touchpad button”. This option isn’t available on devices without a touch screen.

You’ll see a new touchpad icon on your taskbar, near the touch keyboard button. Tap or click it to open or close the virtual touchpad.

To use the virtual touchpad, just place your finger on the touchpad on your touch screen and move it around like you would on a normal touchpad. The mouse cursor will move around the screen as…

Mission Control 101: How to Use Multiple Desktops on a Mac

Do you open a lot of windows on your Mac? Do you ever have trouble keeping track of them all? Then you need to know about Mission Control, which shows you all of your currently open windows, then gives you ways to organize them.

Mission Control is one of those Mac features that’s easy to ignore but makes everything better once you learn about it, mostly because of the multiple desktops feature. Master using those, and the quick ways to switch between them, and you’ll wonder how you ever used your Mac any other way.

How to Open Mission Control

You can access multiple desktops in a number of ways. To access it, swipe up with three or four fingers on your trackpad—the number of fingers you need to use depends on how you have your trackpad set up. You can also just tap the F3 button on your Mac, the Mission Control icon in the dock, or by pressing Control+Up on your keyboard.

The Touch Bar on new MacBook Pros doesn’t have such a button on the Control Strip, but you can add a button if you like.

Once you open Mission Control, it will show you all your open windows, so it’s easier to switch between them. This is similar to a feature called Exposé featured in older versions of macOS, but today we’re interested in the multiple desktops feature along the top.

Using Multiple Desktops in Mission Control

Move your mouse to the top of the screen, where it says “Desktop 1” and “Desktop 2”, and you’ll see two desktops revealed.

You can actually drag windows to one of these desktops, if you want, then switch to the window by clicking it.

With multiple desktops you can organize your workflow, allowing you to do things like research on one desktop while you write on another. And you can add as many desktops as you like by clicking the “+” button at far right.

To switch between desktops, you could just open Mission…

Magnet for Mac Is the Window Management Tool I’ve Desperately Needed

We’ve seen a few different tools for Windows-esque window management on Mac over the years, but none of those ever fit well with my workflow. Magnet is an app that’s been around for a while, but a few recent updates have finally made it the app I need.

At a glance, Magnet ($4.99, but it’s on sale right now for 99¢) is like any window snapping tool. You can organize windows neatly side-by-side, in fullscreen, quarters, thirds, or any combination of those you want. You can manage windows by dragging them, setting up keyboard shortcuts, or by using the menu bar. This alone is helpful for someone like me, who typically has dozens of windows open of varying sizes all stacked in a disorganized way that makes me spend more time in the app switcher than I’d like. If I do ever bother to manually resize a window, it’s usually just to make it large enough to peak out from another stack of apps.

What sets Magnet apart from other options is the sheer amount of polish. It doesn’t get confused by multiple displays (and in fact supports up to six external displays) and you can customize the keyboard shortcuts to suit your needs. It also supports any combination of window areas. For example, you can cram one window in the top right, another in the bottom right, then expand one window to take up the other half of the screen. Magnet also just added options for left/center/right thirds, which turns out to be the feature I was truly waiting for.

What’s especially nice about Magnet is that it doesn’t force any specific move set on you. Whether you’re a keyboard shortcut type of person, a menu person, or a mouse person, you can make user of Magnet. Let’s take a look at how all of these different options look in action.

Organize Windows…

How to Check if You Are Running a 32-bit or 64-bit Version of Firefox

Firefox is available in both 32-bit and 64-bit versions for Windows 7, 8, and 10. If you’re curious which version you’re running, we’ll show a couple of easy ways to find out.

Using the About Firefox Box

The simplest method for finding this information is opening the About Firefox box. However, before continuing, be aware that opening the About Firefox box causes Firefox to automatically update, if there’s an available update. So, if you’d rather not update Firefox right now, skip to the next section for another easy method.

To check if Firefox is 32-bit or 64-bit using the About Firefox box, click the Firefox menu in the upper-right corner of the window and then click the Help icon at the bottom of the menu.

On the Help pane that slides out, click the “About Firefox” option.