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Directive Blogs

Directive has been serving the Oneonta area since 1993, providing IT Support such as technical helpdesk support, computer support, and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

Tip of the Week: Password Protecting a Word Document

The funny thing about some documents is how the data written on them can strongly influence how important they are. If, for instance, there were two pieces of paper on a table, there is objectively no difference between the two, and so they are objectively equivalent in value.

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Tip of the Week: 5 Ways to Make Using Word Better

Microsoft Office is possibly the most well-known suite of software solutions out there, with Microsoft Word probably being the first of the suite’s included programs to come to mind. We’d also wager that most people don’t know all of Word’s capabilities. This week, we’re taking a closer look at some of Word’s handiest, but relatively unknown, features.

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Tip of the Week: Make Sure You'll Be Understood With Microsoft Word

Have you ever been working on writing a blog article or trying your hand at a formal proposal letter and wondered if your writing was appropriate for your audience? You’re not alone. The readability of a document is such a concern for people that Microsoft Word added a feature that will automatically calculate a document’s readability using the Flesch Reading Ease formula and tells approximate reading level using the famous Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level scale.

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How To Co-Author A Microsoft Word Document

As one would expect, a business will run a lot more smoothly when its employees have the resources to work cohesively toward a common goal. This is why collaborative solutions are becoming a staple in many office environments. Today, we’ll examine how one of these solutions, Microsoft Office 365, can help a workforce to achieve its goals.

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Tip of the Week: Four Microsoft Word Tricks You Didn’t Know You Missed

Microsoft Word is more or less synonymous with word processing, but with the right tricks, you can do so much more. For this week’s tip, we’ll go over four neat and useful capabilities that Microsoft Word has.

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Tip of the Week: 3 Better Ways To Use Excel

Microsoft Excel is more or less synonymous with spreadsheet creation. However, even power users may not know all the tricks that are hidden in the program that can help them save significant time. For this week’s tip, we’ll go over some Excel shortcuts that you may not have known about.

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4 Compelling Reasons to Upgrade to Office 365 Business Premium

b2ap3_thumbnail_microsoft_office_365_400.jpgMicrosoft Office 365 offers many different solutions that allow your employees to be able to do their jobs, keep everything organized, and communicate efficiently. Although, it can be tricky to select a good Office 365 plan for your business. To help streamline operations, the Microsoft Office 365 Business Premium edition offers a versatile selection that can meet any needs your business may encounter.

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Find Out if Microsoft SharePoint is Right For Your Business

b2ap3_thumbnail_introduction_to_sharepoint_400.jpgThere are several options on the market that you can deploy to securely store, organize, share, and access your information for your staff. SharePoint, Microsoft’s intranet solution, is worth considering for your data access and sharing needs.

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What’s New With Microsoft Office 2016?

b2ap3_thumbnail_office_2016_400.jpgJust months after releasing their newest operating system, Windows 10, Microsoft is now updating the world’s most popular productivity software. Office 2016 makes several improvements over the Office 2013 versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and the other applications that businesses from all over the world rely on to stay productive. The software, which focuses on making productivity and cooperation possible, has gotten a substantial upgrade in collaborative features.

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Tip of the Week: How to Set Up Multi-Factor Authentication for Office 365

b2ap3_thumbnail_office_365_multi_factor_400.jpgHackers are growing bolder by the day, taking on huge organizations like the IRS and Sony Entertainment, and forcing businesses to stay on the defensive at all times. In spite of this, what can the average small business do to keep themselves safe? For starters, you can integrate multi-factor authentication, a solution designed to make it extra difficult for hackers to access online accounts.

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Tip of the Week: View Multiple Pages at Once in Microsoft Word

b2ap3_thumbnail_microsoft_word_400.jpgLet’s face it; sometimes you need a bird’s eye view of your Microsoft Word document that a single page can’t provide you with. Wouldn’t it be nice if you could view multiple pages and take everything into perspective? Well, as it turns out, you can. In fact, you can view up to eight pages at once by following this simple procedure.

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5 Tips to Enhance Your Next PowerPoint Presentation

b2ap3_thumbnail_presentation_with_powerpoint_400.jpgAs a business leader, you’re expected to make a presentation from time to time. This is where Microsoft PowerPoint comes in handy. However, if your PowerPoint presentation is lame, your message will suffer because of it. Here are five tips to help you make a dynamic PowerPoint presentation.

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Tip of the Week: Take Advantage of Microsoft Outlook’s Quick Step Feature

b2ap3_thumbnail_outlook_email_quick_steps_400.jpgSometimes the reason for not taking advantage of more complex features in programs is that they take multiple steps to complete. For those deterred from these features or functions, Microsoft Outlook has a Quick Steps feature that takes the pain out of multiple-step processes and reduces it to the click of a button.

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Microsoft PowerPoint is Useful, but Not In the Courtroom

b2ap3_thumbnail_powerpoint_no_courts_400.jpgWe all know Microsoft PowerPoint as a great presentation tool which can help you drive information home to the audience. Naturally, this makes it a great medium for use in more than one type of professional environment. It can be used for webinars, lectures, and even the courtrooms; but is a legal trial really a place for a slideshow?

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Tip of the Week: How to Go Back in Microsoft Word

b2ap3_thumbnail_ms_word_400.jpgWhen working on a project, it can be helpful to retrace your steps. This is especially true when using Microsoft Word. To help you find where you were last at in Word, Microsoft has a Go Back command that’s not very well known. For this week’s tip, we’ll show you how to use it.

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Look Out: Critical Microsoft Office Flaw Finally Patched

b2ap3_thumbnail_microsoft_office_vulnerability_400.jpgDoes your office practice proper maintenance and security against the latest threats, like Sandworm and CryptoWall 2.0? You should, or else your business might get a nasty holiday gift in the form of the Schannel vulnerability in Microsoft Office. This particular threat allows a hacker to take over the entire system, making it an exceptionally dangerous vulnerability that you can’t ignore. Thankfully, a patch is available to the general public, so you want to apply it as soon as possible.

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Tip of the Week: Recovering Lost or Corrupt Microsoft Office Files

b2ap3_thumbnail_ms_office_logo_400.jpgIf your business were to lose important files due to an unexpected Microsoft Office crash or hardware failure, what would you do? Losing files can be difficult to recover from, especially if you aren’t using a cloud service which saves automatically after every edit. Lost files don’t benefit anyone, and if they are important, it could even put your business at risk. But don’t worry; there’s a way to recover lost Office files if things turn sour.

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How to Properly Cite Sources in Microsoft Word 2013

b2ap3_thumbnail_word_2013_400.jpgMost people think of Microsoft Word as a normal word processor, and to an extent, that's exactly what it is. But did you know that Word 2013 has a built-in citation mechanism for your research needs? Say you are writing a white paper for marketing use, and you took specific statistics from a website. You want to make sure you cite these facts. Why? Because if you cite them, it makes your business look professional, and it looks good when you know how to credit someone else's work.

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Is Your Word Document Leaking Secrets?

b2ap3_thumbnail_word_tracking_400.jpgJust because you hit the delete button when using Microsoft Word doesn't necessarily mean that your information is gone forever. Thanks to Word's Track Changes feature, all of your deleted sentences can be easily retrieved. This is a very handy tool to help you out of a jam, but it can also be misused to leak secrets if you're not careful.

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3 Amazing Time-Saving Tips with Microsoft OneNote

b2ap3_thumbnail_onenote_is_great_for_business_96.jpgMicrosoft's Note-taking application is something of an enigma. Most of the time, Microsoft Office users have OneNote installed and don't even realize it or use it. This handly little secret has some pretty powerful features. Here are three tips that will change the way you take phone calls and write notes on your PC.

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Making a Graph in Microsoft Excel is as Easy as Pie

b2ap3_thumbnail_excel_400_20140224-133629_1.jpgWhen you need to make your point in a big way, you can make a sharp looking graph. You may think that graph making is difficult, but thanks to tools like Microsoft Excel, creating a convincing chart is as easy as pie! To help you out, we'll walk you through how to make a graph in Microsoft Excel.

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Microsoft Upgrades SkyDrive to OneDrive

b2ap3_thumbnail_skydrive_is_now_onedrive_400_20140221-134335_1.jpgMicrosoft has made significant upgrades to SkyDrive. In fact, the upgrades are such a big deal that Microsoft is rebranding their data hosting service as OneDrive. Microsoft is calling it OneDrive because it's the "one place for your photos, videos, documents, and files across all your devices."

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How to Be an Efficient Speller with Microsoft Word

b2ap3_thumbnail_Microsoft_Word_2010_400.jpgRemember back in elementary school when you memorized lists of words and studied hard to become the top speller in your class? Thanks to spellchecking technology from word processing applications like Microsoft Word, memorizing spelling words is about as worthless as cursive handwriting. Here's how you can use Word's spellchecker more efficiently.

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How to Covert PDFs to Word Documents

b2ap3_thumbnail_pdfword400.jpgHave you ever been frustrated by not being able to edit information locked up inside of a PDF? Now, with Microsoft Word 2013, the issue is resolved, making it super easy to edit text, tables, and graphics within a PDF file.

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Where Are They Now: Clippy

b2ap3_thumbnail_clippy400.jpgIt looks like you're trying to read a blog letter. Would you like help with that? If Microsoft's animated Office assistant Clippy were here, he would undoubtedly be on the corner of the page distracting you from getting anything done. The last time we saw Clippy was in 2003. What has Clippy been up these past ten years?

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What to Look for in Another User’s Excel Workbooks

b2ap3_thumbnail_Excel400.pngCollaborating with a team to complete a project helps everything go smoothly. Although, poor communication and mistakes can actually make the project drag on. Passing on a Microsoft Excel workbook from one employee to another is an example where communicating all the details can help. Here are three important steps to take when inheriting an Excel workbook

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Tip: Use Word to Fill in Scanned Documents

b2ap3_thumbnail_word400.pngHave you ever got stuck having to fill out a paper document, only to butcher it with your handwriting? Paper forms filled out with sloppy handwriting are unprofessional and may even miscommunicate an important detail. To help your paper forms look professional, Microsoft Word allows you to scan the doc and then enter text; we'll show you how!

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Tip: Use Word to Make Words More Better

b2ap3_thumbnail_WordLogo400.jpgFor as long as Microsoft Word has been around, it has been the preferred word processing application from people serious about writing. This is because Word is so much more than a typing app; Word is full of rich features that help writers be better at their craft. One helpful writing feature of Word is the Thesaurus, here's how to use it.

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Forgot to Save? How to Recover an Unsaved Document

b2ap3_thumbnail_RecoverDoc400.jpgHave you ever closed an application and accidently hit 'Don't Save'? Poof. In one forgetful moment all of your progress is gone and your stomach turns into a giant knot. Before you go out and do something crazy, like forsake technology and modern civilization, you will first want to see if Windows was nice and automatically saved you a copy.

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Tip: Improve Your Writing with Squigglies

b2ap3_thumbnail_MicrosoftWord400.jpgUnless you are an English major, writing a well thought-out message without any spelling or grammatical errors can be a challenging task. There is not yet a technology that will transform a couple of bullet points into a detailed thesis paper, but Microsoft Word does include helpful tools that will improve the spelling and grammar for any aspiring writer.

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