How to easily enable/disable scheduled tasks on Windows 10

We’ve often suggested using a scheduled task to accomplish simple, routine things on Windows 10. Windows 10 has a feature rich task scheduler that can be used to create tasks that are triggered by a wide set of events and which can in turn execute a variety of actions. The task scheduler is great but if you need a comprehensive look at your Windows 10 scheduled tasks, the app is a bit messy. If you need an easy way to enable/disable scheduled tasks on Windows 10, you can try the free Nirsoft utility called TaskSchedulerView.

Enable/disable scheduled tasks

Download and run TaskSchedulerView.

When you run the app, you will be able to see at a glance why it’s a great tool to have. The app gives you a one window look at all the currently configured tasks on your system. For each task, it shows you its status, when it was last run, its triggers, its run schedule, which files are executed when the task is run, the author of a task, its description, and much more.

The app basically allows you to view every single attribute of a task on one screen. You can sort the tasks by any of the columns making it easier to find a particular task.

To enable/disable scheduled tasks, select a task and click the little red button in the app’s toolbar. For some tasks, such as those that were created by Windows to run essential maintenance tasks, you will need admin rights to disable them.  Likewise, to run a task, you need to select it and click the green button in the app’s toolbar.

TaskSchedulerView is simple for the most part however, you can also use it to connect to a remote system and view and enable/disable scheduled tasks on it as well. The default task scheduler app on Windows 10 doesn’t focus much on making them easier to find. The UI hasn’t changed much over the years so you get more or less the same app that you did back in Windows 7. Even the Actions column is a bit of a mess.

TaskSchedulerView doesn’t add any new information to the list of tasks that it displays. Every single column, and the information listed under it can be looked up from the Task Scheduler app if you have the time and patience to go through the entire library. It’s just incredibly tedious to do so and the sorting options in the default app fall short of what TaskSchedulerView has to offer.

Read How to easily enable/disable scheduled tasks on Windows 10 by Fatima Wahab on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

How to uninstall the Skype UWP app on Windows 10

Skype is one of those apps that Microsoft bought and has since been consistently running into the ground. The app now has a social aspect, the desktop version for Windows 10 users is no longer safe to install nor is it being updated, and the UWP version has limited options and unlimited bugs. You can’t quit the app, it often fails to show alerts, and if you’re signed into Skype on a different device the app will barely work on your desktop. If you’re tired of the app and have already moved on to better things like Discord or Telegarm, you can uninstall Skype UWP with just a few clicks.

Contrary to what end users commonly believe, Skype can be removed pretty easily from the system. There’s no need to mess with PowerShell although, if you wanted, you could uninstall Skype UWP from there as well.

Uninstall Skype UWP

Open the Start menu and go to the apps’ list. Scroll through the list and find Skype. Alternatively, use Windows search to find it.

Once you find the app, right-click it and the context menu will have an uninstall option. Click it and in the little confirmation box that opens, click Uninstall.

You can also uninstall Skype UWP from the Settings app. Open the Settings app and go to the Apps group of settings. Go to the Apps & Features tab and wait for the list of installed apps to populate and then click Skype and you will see an Uninstall button. Click it, confirm the uninstall in the box that opens and Skype will be removed from your system.

Install Skype UWP

If you ever regret uninstalling Skype or you need to use it again, getting the app back is really easy. All you need is the Microsoft Store app. Open the Microsoft Store app and in the search box, type Skype. The first result should show you the correct app. Select it, and click the Install button on the app’s page.

The Skype UWP app has a lot of features ‘missing’ from it. Users were accustomed to the app behaving a certain way from its desktop version. The fact that you can’t quit it and have to instead sign out of the app to stop showing up online or stop getting notifications is possibly one of the worst aspects of the app. Users also cannot stop the app from running at start up. At this point, its live subtitles and native call recording feature are its only saving grace.

Read How to uninstall the Skype UWP app on Windows 10 by Fatima Wahab on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

How to fix unknown device in Device Manager on Windows 10

The device manage on Windows 10 lists every single hardware device that is connected to your system. This includes both internal and portable devices, and even takes into account the various fans installed on your system to keep it cool when it’s running. Portable devices come and go when they’re connected/disconnected but they are nevertheless still listed there. If you’ve connected a new device and it isn’t working properly, Device Manager is a good place to start looking for what might be wrong. If you see it labeled as an unknown device in Device Manager then you have a driver problem. Here’s how you can fix it.

Basic troubleshooting

You might be tired of hearing this but, if a device shows up as an unknown device, you should try restarting your system. On system restart, Windows 10 will once again detect any new hardware that’s connected to the system and look for drivers for it. If that doesn’t work, you should remove the device and connect it again. If you’re connecting it via a USB port, try using a different port.

Driver Update

As mentioned earlier, this is a driver problem. For whatever reason, Windows 10 didn’t install drivers for the device. This may be a simple error where it was unable to find drivers or it wasn’t able to correctly identify a device.

Regardless, to fix the problem, open Device Manager and right-click the unknown device. From the context menu, select Update drive and you will see the following window. Select the ‘Search automatically for updated driver software’ option. This should, in most cases do the trick.

Proprietary drivers

In some cases, particularly when you’re dealing with printers, the generic drivers that Windows 10 finds may not be enough. Fortunately, printers that require proprietary drivers make them easily available on their manufacturer’s websites. Visit the website for the manufacturer of your ‘unknown device’ and download any recommended drivers. Install them like you would any app, restart your system, and your device should be working.

Additional apps

It is rare for Windows 10 to not be able to find drivers for a device however, in some cases, Windows 10 will only find one or two drivers whereas the device might need additional apps to be installed to work perfectly. This is most commonly seen with iPhones that require iTunes to be installed or with older Android phones that require ADB tools to be installed or even the Android SDK to be installed.

If you’re having a similar problem, check for any additional apps that are needed to manage the device. These apps won’t be listed as drivers since they aren’t drivers.

Hardware problems

If you a device was working perfectly and is suddenly showing up as an unknown device, there’s a chance you have a hardware problem. This may be something as simple as a cable that’s come loose for an internal device or a one that is not working correctly e.g., data cables. If it’s an external device, try using a different cable to connect it. If it’s an internal device, and you’ve exhausted all other options, have your system checked out by a professional.

Read How to fix unknown device in Device Manager on Windows 10 by Fatima Wahab on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

How to convert an image from HEIC to JPEG on Windows 10

Apple has made the HEIC image format common by adding it as the default image format on the newer iPhone models. It’s a format that can reduce the size of an image but still save it with exceptional details. Apple introduced this format so that users who take photos on their iPhone can maximize both local storage space and iCloud storage. iOS can convert HEIC images to JPG however, if you’ve already moved/copied them to your desktop and would like to convert images from HEIC to JPEG, you can.

HEIC to JPEG

In order to convert images from HEIC to JPEG on Windows 10, you need to install a free app called CopyTrans HEIC for Windows. You can find the download link at the very bottom of the linked page.

Installing the app is pretty simple however you should know that Windows 10 natively supports the HEIC file format via an extension for the Photos app. In order for CopyTrans HEIC for Windows to work, the app will uninstall the extension. You can install it later from the Microsoft Store but it may interfere with the app working.

Once the app has been installed, navigate to any HEIC format image on your system. CopyTrans HEIC for Windows has no interface to speak of. It works entirely from the context menu. Right-click the HEIC image that you want to convert and from the context menu, select the  Convert to JPEG with CopyTrans option from the context menu. The image will be converted and saved to the same location as the original image. The original image will of course remain untouched.

As with any file conversion app, quality is key here and we’re talking about conversion between a format that is supposed to give excellent quality with a smaller file size to a format that reduces quality to maintain a smaller file size.

Comparing the original HEIC image and the converted JPEG image, the quality appears to have been preserved as far as a cursory examination can tell. Perhaps a more skilled eye can detect if there is any loss in detail. The original image that we converted was 1.25MB in size and the converted JPEG image came out at 2.40MB which is almost double the size of the original. Still, the increase in size does mean that quality has been preserved to the extent that JPEG allows it.

If you want to convert several HEIC images to JPEG, simply select them all and right-click any one of them. The conversion option will still be present in the context menu.

Read How to convert an image from HEIC to JPEG on Windows 10 by Fatima Wahab on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

How to get Edge like smooth scrolling in Chrome on Windows 10

We don’t really say nice things about Edge often. The browser has little wiggle room in that area but it has a nice smooth scroll that, if you were to use the browser, you’d enjoy. Smooth scrolling isn’t reason enough to switch to Edge however, you can get Edge like smooth scrolling in Chrome with an extension called SmoothScroll.

SmoothScroll isn’t meant to just mimic Edge’s smooth scrolling. The extension gives you extensive control over the various factors that impact scrolling in Chrome. You can, for example, set how much or quickly a page scrolls. If you know the right settings, you can use it to get Edge like smooth scrolling in Chrome.

Get Edge like smooth scrolling

Install SmoothScroll from the Chrome Web Store. After you install the extension, you need to customize its settings first. The correct set of settings that get you Edge like smooth scrolling in Chrome were posted by Reddit user u/dkepsilon.

Go to the extension’s settings and replicate the values you see below.

For Step size, you want to enter 285. For Animation time, set the value to 700. Acceleration scale should be set to 50, and Acceleration delta should be set at 80. Change Pulse Scale to 10 and leave Arrow key step size to its default value of 50. Scroll down the options’ page and click Save Settings.

Once you’ve correctly configured the extension you need to refresh all the tabs that you have open for the extension to work on them. Alternatively, you can close and re-open Chrome and use the Ctrl+Shift+T keyboard shortcut to re-open all your previous tabs.

The difference in scrolling will be obvious right away but it’s easier to see if you have a particularly long page to scroll. You can test it out on Reddit which now loads more and more posts the further down you scroll. You can also check out a particularly lengthy Wikipedia article.

The above settings appear to have hit the perfect spot for replicating smooth scrolling however, there’s nothing stopping you from changing them. If you find the new scroll too slow, too fast, or too much of something else, you can play around with the settings until you find something that is both smooth and comfortable for you to use.

As great as Chrome is, it’s never really had good scrolling. There are many extensions that aim to fix scrolling in Chrome but Google never seems to want to do anything about it.

Read How to get Edge like smooth scrolling in Chrome on Windows 10 by Fatima Wahab on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter