6 hidden Windows 10 tools you should be using

Microsoft PowerToys looks like it should be a new videogame franchise or a children’s interactive device. No, Microsoft hasn’t shifted its focus to kids, but it has given some adults new things to play with inside Windows.

Tinkering with code in Windows operating systems is usually left to professionals, but Microsoft PowerToys makes it possible for everyone. It is a set of freeware system utilities designed to add Windows functionality beyond what is normally available. Tap or click here for the Windows 10 keyboard shortcuts you need to know.

By using PowerToys, there is no fear of unauthorized code being executed on your Windows computer. Microsoft developed all the tools provided by itself. Let’s see what you can do with this cool toy brought to you by our sponsor Dell. Need advice on choosing technology for your small business?

How to Use Microsoft PowerToys
To explain how PowerToys works, it must be understood that they are shell extensions. They are bits of code that extend the capabilities of the Windows operating system. They are not traditional download and install applications.

With this in mind, the Microsoft PowerToys available have all been developed to enhance the operation of Windows. Here are six utilities we think are amazing.

1. Keyboard Manager
Keyboard Manager is great for anyone who wants to change the layout of their keyboard.

While this won’t physically change the layout, it does allow you to remap any key. You can also create your own keyboard shortcuts with the newly mapped keys.

2. Shortcut Guide
You’ve probably at some point looked down at your keyboard in frustration, trying to remember a specific Windows shortcut. This is where the wonderful Windows Key Shortcuts Guide comes in.

When you hold down the Windows key for more than a second, the guide will pop up. It will then show you all the available keyboard shortcuts for the window it is in.

3. FancyZone
By default, you can pin your open windows to either side of the screen. This allows you to have a full view of two windows at the same time. But FancyZones takes it a step further. Window Manager allows you to create and manage complex window layouts and position them rapidly.

4. Image Reseller
Resizing an image for a social media or blog post usually involves opening something like Microsoft Paint. It can be messy, and sometimes file compression doesn’t work very well.

ImageResizer is a Windows shell extension, based on Bryce Lambson’s code. This means you don’t have to open an app or program to resize a photo. Just right-click on it, select Dimensions and your PC will do the rest. You can resize multiple images at the same time.

5. PowerToys Run
PowerToys Run upgrades the default search function in Windows and combines it with the Run command. The shortcut is launched by pressing Alt + Space and then typing the app you are looking for. When the results will be shown and you click on it, it will automatically run that app.

6. Video Conference Mute
It has certainly been developed during the pandemic. Physical meetings have shifted online, and no one really knows what the correct etiquette is.

But with videoconference mute, you won’t be caught doing something you shouldn’t on camera or speakers. With a single tap of Windows Key + N, it will instantly mute your microphone and videos, no matter what happens on the main screen. This is an experimental version for now, requiring Windows 10 1903 (build 18362) or later.

Run a Small Business? Dell is here to help
When you run a business, finding the right technology is important. You don’t want to waste money on equipment that won’t work. This PC works great for what we do, but your business is different. What you need may also be different.

Don’t just guess and hope it all turns out well. The professionals at Dell Small Business can help. Chat, call or email a consultant and get free, helpful advice to help you find the right solution. That’s right, it’s actually free. You don’t have to buy a thing. You can get smart, reliable help simply by choosing the right equipment for your company.

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