How to suspend background apps on macOS that drain battery

Macbooks have some of the best batteries in the market. You can easily get ten hours of usage if you’re not watching movies. That said, sometimes tame apps tend to drain your battery quite a bit. Browsers are one example. If you have apps that you know take a toll on your battery, you can use Wintertime – Background App Freezer to suspend background apps on macOS.

The app basically checks if an app is using the CPU too much. An app that uses the CPU a lot, will also cause the battery to drain much faster and will be suspended by Wintertime. It won’t check CPU usage for all the apps that are currently running. Instead, you have to give it a list of apps to monitor and when they’re in the background, it suspends them.

Suspend background apps

Download and install Wintertime – Background App Freezer. When you run the app, it comes with a list of apps that it will monitor. You can edit it by clicking inside the list and deleting an app name, or adding one. You can only add one app per line and make sure you include an asterisk (*) after an app so that Wintertime freezes all processes that the app starts.

When you’re done editing the list, click Start Freezing.

To stop the app, you have to click the Stop Freezing button. If at any time you find that an app is frozen, or you encounter some other problem with one of the frozen apps, you can also click the Panic Button on the app. The Panic Button will automatically unfreeze all suspended apps.

Wintertime doesn’t close apps, it only suspends them however, some apps may crash if they remain suspended for too long. Mac apps are normally pretty stable but there are no guarantees when you interfere with an app’s working. For browsers, there’s little risk of you losing data but if you’re using Wintertime to freeze apps like Photoshop, or iMovie, you may want to make sure that you save what you’re working before sending the app to the background.

Wintertime will automatically unfreeze apps when they are brought to the front. You can use it with practically any app but I don’t recommend using it with Safari. It won’t crash the browser but Safari has its own built-in mechanism for offloading tabs that consume too much battery. It’s best to let it self-regulate than to introduce a third-party app to manage it.

Read How to suspend background apps on macOS that drain battery by Fatima Wahab on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

How to install and uninstall File Explorer extensions on Windows 10

File Explorer is a really good file manager as far as features are concerned. It may not have the greatest dark theme but it is nevertheless a good file manager. As great as it is, it may lack in some areas but most of its shortcomings can be filled with extensions. You can change how File Explorer works with apps that modify it or with just stand alone extensions. Here’s how you can install and uninstall File Explorer extensions.

File Explorer extensions

There’s no particular repository for File Explorer extensions so I can’t point you to a website for it. You can look for them via a Google search, or you can try out this extension that lets you enable SVG file previews in File Explorer.

Install extensions

File Explorer extensions are really EXE files so all you have to do is run it like you would any other desktop app. You will need admin rights to install it. Like most apps, the extension should start working right away but if it doesn’t, you should restart File Explorer.

Uninstall extensions

Since extensions for File Explorer install like ordinary desktop apps, you will uninstall them the same way. Open Control Panel and look through the list of installed apps and you will find the extension that you installed. It is important that you know the extension’s name because the Control Panel doesn’t sort items by type.

Select the extension from the list, and click the Uninstall button to remove the extension.

File Explorer extensions are desktop apps because File Explorer itself is still a desktop app. Microsoft hasn’t introduced a UWP file manager, and we can only hope they don’t do so until they have a really, really good app to replace it with.

Extensions for UWP apps are also UWP apps themselves. An example of this are the various extensions that are available for the Photos and TV & Movies apps. UWP app extensions are uninstalled from the Apps group of settings in the Settings app.

File Explorer extensions are great but remember to only install them if you’re sure they’re safe. File Explorer is an integral app on Windows 10 so if you end up installing an extension that hijacks it, getting rid of it might be an ordeal. If you’re unsure whether an extension is safe or not, and you are still determined to install it, make sure you know how to run Windows 10 in safe mode so that you can uninstall it if it goes rouge.

Read How to install and uninstall File Explorer extensions on Windows 10 by Fatima Wahab on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

How to enable tab previews in Chrome

Microsoft Edge has a few features that other popular browsers do not have. The list is small but it nevertheless means Edge does a few tricks that other browsers can’t do just yet. One rather useful feature that Edge has is tab previews. When you hover your mouse over tabs that are open, you get a little preview of the tab. This is something neither Chrome nor Firefox can do. You can enable tab previews in Chrome via a flag but the feature doesn’t stack up to the one in Edge.

Tab previews in Chrome

Open Chrome and enter the following in the address bar;

Chrome://flags

This will open the Chrome flags page. Click inside the search bar and search for Hover. The search results will list a flag called Tab Hover Cards. Open the dropdown next to it and select Enabled from the dropdown menu. Relaunch Chrome for the flag to be applied.

Using tab previews

I mentioned earlier that this feature isn’t quite like the one in Edge. At present, the the feature doesn’t give you a picture preview of the tab, at least not yet. When you hover your mouse cursor over the current tab, or a tab that’s in the background the preview you see will only show you the name of the website and its URL. It’s hardly the same as the preview you get in Edge.

The feature doesn’t compare to Edge but that doesn’t mean it’s useless. If you open a lot of tabs in Chrome, you know that it soon gets to a point where the tab title quickly becomes impossible to read. The title is cut off by the other tabs that are open. When you hover your mouse cursor over a tab, the title appears making it easier to distinguish which tab is which.

Ideally, the preview should also show you the favicon for the website but I couldn’t get it to show up during tests. It may take a little time for the icons to be cached. Since it’s a feature enabled via a Flag, it will likely improve but that could take quite a while. There’s never any time frame on when a feature from Flags will be improved, or roll out as a stable feature, and in some cases they might just be retired. It’s rare for a flag feature to be retired but it does happen. That said, this feature is still available in the current version of Canary and there’s a second flag that does actually let you enable image tab previews.

Read How to enable tab previews in Chrome by Fatima Wahab on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

How to Hide Spelling and Grammar Errors in a Specific Word Document

word logo

If you want to hide spelling and grammar errors in a specific Word document without all of your other documents being affected by the setting change, then you’re in luck. Microsoft Word, unsurprisingly, has a way to do this.

You might be wondering why you’d want to turn off spellcheck for a specific document in the first place. There is any number of reasons. Perhaps you like leaving the feature on in most documents but have one where it distracts you. Or, perhaps you’ve got a boilerplate where you use filler words (like Word’s Lorem Ipsum feature). Or, maybe you want to test yourself and see how many mistakes you make. Whatever the reason, you can do it in a few simple steps.

Hiding Document-Specific Spelling and Grammar Mistakes

With your document open, switch to the “File” tab.

file tab

Next, select “Options” from the bottom of the left-hand pane.

select options

The “Word Options” window will now appear. Here, select the “Proofing” tab.

proofing tab

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