Readers offer their best tips for getting cascading folders in a quick launch menu, dealing with large amounts of tiny screws, and easy, wallet-sized public transportation schedules.
About the Tips Box: Every day we receive boatloads of great reader tips in our inbox, but for various reasons — maybe they’re a bit too niche, maybe we couldn’t find a good way to present it, or maybe we just couldn’t fit it in — the tip didn’t make the front page. From the Tips Box is where we round up some of our favourites for your buffet-style consumption. Got a tip of your own to share? Email it to tips at lifehacker.com.au.
Use Symbolic Links to Get Cascading Quick Launch Folders
MPS shows us how to make Windows’ quick launch even more useful:
A few days ago, The How-to Geek posted this article. I thought it was great, so I tried it out, and I noticed I added many shortcuts to folders that I access frequently, but they don’t cascade. Most of my folders were on another drive and had stuff like my music which is 80+GB, and I didn’t feel like copying them just to get that cascade effect.
But this article that Lifehacker posted works perfectly for this scenario:
The mklink /d command is perfect for this. For example, if you want to make a shortcut to your Documents folder, type this:
mklink /d “%appdata%RoamingMicrosoftInternet ExplorerQuick Launch[THE NAME YOU WANT, so in this case Documents] ” “E:Documents” or wherever your documents folder is located, and that should work.
Draw Diagrams for Easy Screw Reference
Geo shows us how to organise when taking something apart that has lots of small screws:
Normally, when taking things apart, I keep double sided tape around. A quick strip or two on the workbench will hold your tiny screws in easy reach and keep from loosing them.
HOWEVER, in taking apart laptops, things can get a lot more complex. Before Apple switched to the MagSafe adaptor, I fixed quite a few friends’ powerbooks after they tripped on the cord and damaged the board inside the laptop. Unfortunately, that board could be First In, Last Out, which means taking apart the *entire* machine. I have forgotten the exact count, but I think that meant >60 little tiny screws. More than can easily be managed by ice cube trays or a few lines of double-sided tape.
The approach I developed is as follows:
On the workbench (or kitchen table if that is your option) around the working area I would tape down 4 sheets of paper. (may need more or less, depending on the machine in question, but generally: Top, Bottom, Top inside, Bottom inside)
As I got to each stage, I would sketch a quick outline of the machine and/or relevant areas. With every screw that came out, I draw a red circle on the sketch relative to the position of the screw. The screw then goes on its circle.
This makes is a no-brainer in re-assembly as you know the exact position of every screw without thinking, and eliminates issues where screws of (slightly) different sizes are used in the same area. It significantly speeds up re-assembly as you never have to stop to figure out which screw goes where.
We just featured one way to organise lots of screws using index cards, and that method is easier if you can use it — but in cases where you have more than just a few different shapes and sizes of screw, you may find a diagram more useful.
Print Wallet-Sized Timetables for Public Transportation
Seaneth shares a situation where low-tech may still be easier than mobile tech:
Low-tech tip: I used to commute on a train, but I would get to the train station at a different time every day depending on when I left work. I printed up part of the timetable so when I was riding connecting trains, out at a bar, etc. I could see how much time I had. I taped it to a credit card sleeve that I keep inside my wallet (I’ve always had trouble w/ cc’s getting ruined so I keep them inside the sleeves inside my wallet now…is that a tip too? 🙂 )
Faster reference than any smartphone (which I don’t have anyway) and more reliable (could be checked underground). Green times were express, times with a dot were one of two train lines which was a bit faster than the other, and the red time I knew never to take because taking the next train after it would actually get me home faster.
Add Extra Spellcheckers to Windows Live Writer
gsarig lets us know how to add support for other languages to Windows Live Writer:
Windows Live Writer doesn’t come with a functionality of adding extra spellcheckers, at least at it’s current version. There is a way to it, though, using the dictionaries of MS Office.
Here’s the procedure:
1. Copy the .LEX and .DLL files of the dictionary you want to add, from C:Program FilesCommon Filesmicrosoft sharedPROOF
2. Paste the two files on C:Program FilesWindows LiveWriterDictionaries
3. Open Windows Live Writer and go to Tools / Options / Spelling. At the “Dictionary Language”, you will see a new option with the language you ‘ve just added. Select it, click “Apply” and you are done.
I tested it and it works fine. I guess you can add as many spellcheckers as you want that way, supposing that you have the necessary dictionaries from MS Office.