Stories by Rick Broida

Disable a laptop touchpad while you type, Win 7 edition

Many moons ago I wrote about TouchFreeze, a free laptop utility that solves one of life's most maddening problems: accidental swipes of your touchpad while typing. (Why isn't Windows smart enough to do this on its own? Just saying.)

Slow Wi-Fi? Try bypassing it with an Ethernet cable

A reader has noticed that the Wi-Fi at her local library has slowed considerably in recent months, and she's wondering what's causing it: "Is it our computers, bogged down with too much junk, or is it something to do with the library's system?"

Laptop tips: Add RAM, recycle a hard drive

It's been almost a year since I served up some nice, hot laptop tips--and that's inexcusable. I'll make it up to you this week with some useful advice on adding memory to a laptop, turning an old laptop hard disc into an external drive, and using you...

Troubleshoot sluggish or non-working Wi-Fi

I'm a big fan of working at offsite locations--meaning my local Wi-Fi-equipped coffee shop. In fact, I'll often spend the afternoon hunkered down at Panera Bread, iced tea in one hand and a French Toast bagel in the other. (It's bad form to set up sh...

Keep kids safe online with OpenDNS FamilyShield

You wouldn't let your kids walk the streets of Amsterdam's Red Light District, but giving them unrestricted access to the Web is practically the same thing. The problem is, how do you block out all that inappropriate Web content?

Add RAM to a laptop

So my dad was griping that his Acer Aspire 9300 laptop takes forever to boot. I inspected it for spyware, excessive startup programs, and the other usual suspects, but everything checked out.

Stop frustrating pauses in YouTube videos

In response to some recent posts about YouTube, reader Miles wrote me to ask about YouTube "buffeting" (I think he means buffering, unless YouTube has started generating strong winds in his area).

Most Popular Reviews

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PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

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