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Preferred Blog

Preferred has been serving the Tinley Park area since 1991, providing IT Support such as technical helpdesk support, computer support, and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

Tip of the Week: Take and Share Screenshots in Windows 11

Tip of the Week: Take and Share Screenshots in Windows 11

A screenshot can be a remarkably handy thing to have on hand, for both your own purposes and especially for the purposes of technology support. While there are many tools out there that can help you take effective screenshots, there is a modern solution available for all users of Windows 11. Let’s look at how you can use it!

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Exploring Some Ways Windows 11 Boosts Productivity

Exploring Some Ways Windows 11 Boosts Productivity

The Windows operating system has gradually improved since it was first released back in 1985, bringing us to Windows 11 and its productivity-boosting capabilities nearly four decades later. Let’s take a closer look at just a few of these features so you can make the most of your time using the OS.

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Using Windows PowerToys Might Give You the Edge You Need

Using Windows PowerToys Might Give You the Edge You Need

Microsoft’s operating systems have been around for a long time, and since Windows 95, Microsoft has published free utilities that can help users make slight adjustments to their operating systems to suit their needs. Microsoft PowerToys are even available now, and we want to explore what they can do for your business, as well as how you can acquire them.

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Tip of the Week: Easy Windows 10 Screenshots

Tip of the Week: Easy Windows 10 Screenshots

There is one key on the keyboard that might seem a little odd: PrtScn. It’s not immediately obvious what this key does or why you would want to use it, but we assure you that it is an extremely helpful keyboard shortcut once you understand how it works and why you might want to try it out. In reality, the PrtScn key (on some keyboards it might just be PrtSc) is important for taking screenshots on your Windows device.

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Everything You Need to Know About Windows 8.1 End of Life

Everything You Need to Know About Windows 8.1 End of Life

With Microsoft announcing that the Windows 11 release is right around the corner, most users will be looking to upgrade to hardware that supports it. This is a topic for another day. As we approach the Windows 11 launch, Microsoft is gearing up to retire one of its most controversial (and ultimately innovative) operating systems to date, Windows 8.1. Today, we thought we’d talk a little bit about the mixed bag Windows 8.1 is and how it will be important to move off of the software by January 2023.

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A Major Update to Windows 10 Is On the Horizon

A Major Update to Windows 10 Is On the Horizon

Back in 2015, Microsoft confirmed that Windows 10 would be the last version of Windows, meaning that we should not expect Windows 11 anytime soon. Still, a major update to the Windows 10 operating system has been confirmed to be on its way. What’s coming with this next update to Windows 10, and what does it mean for your business?

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Tip of the Week: The ABCs of Windows Shortcuts

Tip of the Week: The ABCs of Windows Shortcuts

Windows has no shortage of capabilities to offer its users, with many of these tools coming with an associated Windows shortcut. Since keeping track of all of them can be a challenge, we wanted to assemble a list of most of them for you. This blog will serve as that list, so make sure you add it to your browser’s favorites for quick reference!

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Tip of the Week: How to Take a Screenshot in Windows 10

Tip of the Week: How to Take a Screenshot in Windows 10

Okay, so first off: when it comes to taking a screenshot, today’s user has a lot of options baked into Windows. Of course, there’s the Print Screen key on most keyboards—but that only allows the user to literally take a screenshot of their entire display and edit it down in some other program.

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Tip of the Week: Sign a PDF in Windows

Tip of the Week: Sign a PDF in Windows

PDFs have been around for a while and they have become an extremely useful file format for business. One of the best features of the PDF is that it is useful for securing signatures so that contracts can be handled over the Internet. Today, we’ll go over how you go about signing a PDF in Windows.

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More Than 70 Percent of PCs Run Windows 10

More Than 70 Percent of PCs Run Windows 10

Ever since Windows 10 debuted in July of 2015, it has slowly risen in its market share. This has continued throughout the tumultuous times that 2020 has provided, as the OS has now reached a market share of 72.2 percent as of October. Let’s go over why this matters, and why—if you haven’t done so yet—you need to add your organization’s PCs to that number.

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Tip of the Week: Working Around Windows’ Restore Point Issue

Tip of the Week: Working Around Windows’ Restore Point Issue

One would think that a program called System Restore would be one that would be prioritized as one to get right. Unfortunately, this seems not to be the case, as utilizing one of your restore points after performing a Windows Update can cause some serious issues. For our tip, we’ll go over how to avoid these issues with a workaround.

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Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Approaching End of Life

Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Approaching End of Life

Microsoft is the world’s most profitable software company, and if your business is like any of the millions of businesses that rely on Microsoft’s servers, you know they are both useful and secure. Occasionally, however, Microsoft will retire older software titles as they need constant care and support. On July 9, 2019, Microsoft will officially retire their SQL Server 2008 and SQL Server 2008 R2 operating systems. If your organization still uses this software there is no time like the present to get you systems updated, as losing support will be a major problem.

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Your Search Bar Is Now More Secure

Your Search Bar Is Now More Secure

August saw yet another Patch Tuesday designed to resolve security issues in Microsoft products. Out of the 48 vulnerabilities resolved, 15 affected Windows, while 25 were rated as critical, 21 as important, and 27 that allowed for remote code execution. This might sound a little overwhelming, so we’ll try to simplify it a bit--a lot of flaws were fixed, and the majority of them can be considered dangerous for your organization.

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Tip of the Week: How to Encrypt Windows Files

Tip of the Week: How to Encrypt Windows Files

Looking for a way to protect sensitive files on your PC? For Windows users, one easy safeguard you can take is to encrypt the files and file folders containing your sensitive information.

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Tip of the Week: Use Windows Start Menu to Search Your PC and the Web

Tip of the Week: Use Windows Start Menu to Search Your PC and the Web

It’s no secret that finding a particular program or file on your computer can be a pain, especially when you don’t have the time to hunt it down by clicking through folders. However, there is a much easier way to locate your desired data. All you need to do is use the search option found in the Start menu, which is the subject of this week’s tip.

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Tip of the Week: Know When Your Windows OS Expires and Why it Matters

Tip of the Week: Know When Your Windows OS Expires and Why it Matters

By design, Microsoft’s operating systems aren’t built to last forever. Due to the fact that technology is always changing, new operating systems with better security and improved capabilities are routinely needed. Microsoft gets users to transition from an older OS to a newer one by ending support for the older one. This begs the question, how long until Microsoft pulls the plug on your OS?

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Tip of the Week: How to Type Accents and Other Oddball Characters

b2ap3_thumbnail_special_character_400.jpgWe’ve all seen the various accent marks, or “diacritical marks,” used in languages all over the world. For example, the umlaut (as seen in the word “über” ) is used in some German and Hungarian words to signal how to pronounce specific vowels. While these have mostly disappeared from the English language, we see them from time to time when going about our business on the web, and every time, the same question plays in our heads: “How the heck do you type that?”

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Sorry, Windows XP Users: No More Google Chrome Updates for You

b2ap3_thumbnail_chrome_support_ending_400.jpgIt’s been quite some time since Microsoft cut the cord on Windows XP support, rendering it insecure and incredibly risky to run in a professional setting. This was quite a blow to both PC users and business professionals, but it’s about to get even worse for the antiquated operating system. Now, even Google is cutting support for their web browser, Google Chrome, for older operating systems from both Microsoft and Apple.

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Tip of the Week: How to Uninstall Unwanted Apps and Programs in Windows 10

b2ap3_thumbnail_uninstall_programs_in_windows_400.jpgOne of the most basic functions that the average Windows user should understand is how to get rid of applications and programs that are unnecessary or potentially threatening. Previous versions of Windows made users jump through hoops to get rid of their unwanted apps and programs, but Windows 10 makes it much easier to do so. In fact, there are three easy ways to eliminate your unnecessary apps and programs.

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Windows Server 2003 Support Ends this July

b2ap3_thumbnail_server_operating_system_losing_support_400.jpgJuly 14th is an important date in the business technology world. Why? Because it’s a major landmark for users of Windows Server 2003. In just a few short months, Microsoft will no longer support this decade-old server operating system. Therefore, you must take steps to upgrade away from this server OS before it’s too late.

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      Everyone knows that a telephone system is a core component of a well-functioning business. Unfortunately, many businesses’ telephone systems haven’t advanced, but the way people do business has. If your business is paying a premium for its telephone system and isn’t getting ...

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      Best Places to Work - 5 YEARS STRONG!!

      Preferred is once again, honored for being a Best Place to Work for the fifth straight year!  Our team is what makes Preferred a Best Place to Work.  

      Daily Herald Suburban Business 2024 Best Places to Work Honorees The Daily Herald Suburban Business has announced the names of 51 companies, in 5 categories of competition, that are honored as the 2024 Best Places to Work in Illinois. This statewide survey and awards program was designed to identify, recognize and honor the best places of employment in Illinois, benefiting the state's economy, its workforce and businesses.