PC Doctor April 7, 2011

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Dear PC Doctor,

I recently started using Mozilla Firefox as my main web browser. I have a lot of bookmarks on my desktop that I visit daily. When I double click on them to the websites, they still open up in Internet Explorer instead of Firefox. Even if I have Firefox, it still opens the bookmarked websites in Internet Explorer. Is there way to make them open automatically in Firefox?


Dear Camilla,

Your computer seems to have Internet Explorer set up as your default web browser, which happens to be the default setting for most Windows computers. While that may sound daunting, it's an easy fix! No need to bother with Internet Explorer; start off by opening up Firefox. Depending on your version of Firefox, it might look a bit different. (Firefox 4 just came out recently; try it if you haven't yet!) Click on Tools in the Menu bar at the top of your screen. Click on “Options” to open the settings window. From there, click on the “Advanced” tab at the top of the window. At the bottom of the window, there is a selection labeled: “Always check to see if Firefox is the default browser on startup”.   If the little box isn't checked, check it. Next click on the “Check Now” button.  Firefox will ask if you'd like to make it the default browser. Click yes. Next, click “OK” on the Options window.  All set! Enjoy an Internet Explorer-free browsing experience. All of the bookmarked icons on your desktop should now open in Firefox.

            PC Doctor

Do you use your computer a lot at night? Especially in a dark room? Don't laugh! It's not as uncommon as you think. Computer screens are generally lit really brightly so that you can see what's going on when there's a lot of ambient light. Since monitors don't have any kind of light sensors to automatically adjust the brightness of the screen, this means that in the dark it's REALLY bright and white. All this light late at night isn't very good for your eyes. It also tricks your body into thinking that it's daytime.  Ever have a hard time going to sleep after using the computer? Even if you haven't had a problem, you should check out this cool software I found— “f.lux”.  It's a small program that continually runs in the background of your computer. During the day, your display stays at its normal/pure white color. When night comes around, it changes the tint of the computer to make it easier on your eyes. Just give your location, set the maximum and minimum tinting and it takes over the rest. You can set the transition to be so gradual that it's indiscernible or noticeable but faster. Squint no more! Try it out at www.stereopsis.com/flux/ (You too Linux and Mac users!)

            PC Doctor


Until next time... happy computing!