help key

  • Help Key: Put Display Settings Back In The OS X Mountain Lion Menu Bar Where They Belong

    Help Key: Put Display Settings Back In The OS X Mountain Lion Menu Bar Where They Belong

    I like my Retina MacBook Pro, in part because I have the option to switch to extremely high-resolution display modes when I’m way from my home Thunderbolt monitor and want as much screen real estate as I can get. But Apple did a curious thing in OS X Mountain Lion: They removed the option to put a display preferences item in the OS X menu bar. Luckily, third-party developers have stepped… Read More

  • The 4 signs your HDTV isn't properly configured


    HDTV is probably the greatest thing to ever happen to the human race. It’s too bad then that a lot of us are¬†ignorantly¬†watching poorly set-up HDTVs. You owe it to yourself to ensure that you’re getting every ounce of enjoyment out of your expensive boob tube. There are a few common problems HDTV owners face and you can quickly diagnose an HDTV with a few simple steps. Read More

  • Help Key: How to use Windows Remote Desktop Connection to connect to computers without user passwords

    Gather round, everyone. Gather round. I’m going to show you a trick that 98% of you will never use. But for the 2% of you that actually use the information contained herein, I hope you’ll consider removing at least part of the CrunchGear staff from your “People to Punch” list. Read More

  • Help Key: Install iTunes 9 on Windows Home Server

    It wasn’t the LP albums or redesigned look that got me excited when Apple announced iTunes 9. Nope, it was the function called Home Sharing that touted the ability to share and copy media over a LAN easily. Sure, you could always drop all your music files into a centralized network share and rock out that way, but while that method works, it’s not elegant or easy for others to… Read More

  • Help Key: We answer all of your DTV questions

    The analog shutoff date of June 12 is right around the corner. It will be here before you know it. The transition from analog to digital has been riddled with rumors and half-truths, but we’re here to help. Drop us a question after the jump and we’ll ensure that you and your family are prepared for the switch. Read More

  • Help Key: How to get out of helping people with their new Christmas presents


    Your brother just got a new digital camera. Your mom got a GPS device. Your grandfather got a Falcon Northwest gaming rig with six cores and a graphics card that requires its own physical plant. You’re stuffed, sleepy, and just want to watch TV. How do you distract these hordes long enough to get in another turkey sandwich and viewing of A Christmas Story. Follow these easy steps: Read More

  • Quick Tip: Hold down F2 on MacBook Air, new MacBook Pro at start up to enter Hardware Test Mode

    Just an interesting little tidbit: there is a system test built into the EFI on MacBook Airs and MBPs – most Alu MBs with an Intel processor. If you hold F2 and start the computer, it will drop into hardware test version 3A152, which is apparently right in memory. This saved me when I didn’t have my MacBook Air start-up disk available. Read More

  • Help Key: How to buy a watch

    I’m just full of helpful hints this week. This one comes after seeing a comment on my other site, WristWatchReview about the BR02, a 1000M diver with a fairly striking design. I liked it when I saw it but at $4,800 I could probably pass. But did you know you could get it for a mere $168? Read More

  • Help Key: Why, When, and Where should you buy a DSLR?


    With the launch of multiple DSLRs including today’s Nikon D3X, camera manufacturers are ready and waiting for you to buy their wares. But should you? Read More

  • Time Machine Scheduler: Stop with the freaking backups at 9am already

    Every morning I wake up to the sound of my backup drive churning away like a damn chop saw and I suffer a huge performance hit for the first few hours of my day. No longer, thankfully, because a little Googling found this handly little app allows you to schedule the backups at a sane interval. I’ve just set mine up to hit at 1am, noon, and 8pm and I’m sure it will be OK. Read More

  • Help Key: How to protect your webmail with GnuPG and FireGPG

    Encryption scares a lot of people – me included – because it’s based on really complicated mathematics. Thankfully, the state of encryption software has advanced sufficiently in the last couple of years that it’s pretty easy for laypeople like us to take advantage of the protection it offers. Just like you don’t shop online without a secured HTTPS connection… Read More

  • Help Key Redux: Fix an iPhone caught in a bad reboot cycle or that won't boot

    This was originally posted in April but I’m putting it here because I know some of you guys are going to try to upgrade and will begin crying once the iPhone bricks like a drunk frat boy at a co-ed All-Greek basketball game. This has come up a few times in the past couple days with folks trying to install pwned and failing. What happens is that the firmware doesn’t flash correctly… Read More

  • Help Key: Adding your .Me account to Mail/Exchange

    If you have a .Mac account you can easily add your me.com account to your mail reader right now. Create a new IMAP account and follow these steps:
    Read More

  • Help-Key Going Green Edition: Tips to maximize your rechargeable batteries

    With so many portable devices in our homes, we use a lot more batteries than people think about. After many uses, though, many rechargeable batteries can suddenly fail, rendering the device useless if they’re non-swappable. If the device has a removable battery, you can of course buy a new one, but that means throwing the toxic and useless old one out. Why not trade it in to a refurb… Read More

  • Help Key: Fix an iPhone caught in a bad reboot cycle or that won't boot

    This has come up a few times in the past couple days with folks trying to install pwned and failing. What happens is that the firmware doesn’t flash correctly and you have an iPhone or Touch caught in a horrible boot cycle that consistently fails. Sometimes it draws junk on the screen, which is basically the kernel trying to start and then failing and retrying. These instructions are… Read More

  • Help-Key: How to hack a guitar stomp box for Star Power in Rock Band

    Help-Key is a column I write for CrunchGear that has hacks and how-tos so you can live a better life. I know, I’m an altruist. But sometimes I find someone else’s hack and think it’s better than anything I could come up with. Such is Bashhh’s hack for a Rock Band guitar stomp box. This is an awesome idea and I’m jealous I didn’t think of it first. See… Read More

  • Help-Key: Pwnage for iPhone FAQ

    The Dev Team, a dedicated team of iPhone hackers responsible for most Jailbreaking methods, has released a tool called Pwnage that was announced a couple of weeks ago. Pwnage does it all. Unlocking, activating, and Jailbreaking the iPhone is now yesterday’s news. Pwnage actually fully unlocks the hardware to accept any type of custom firmware you’d like to add, effectively making… Read More

  • Crunch Network

    Help-Key: Activating, SIM unlocking and jailbreaking an iPhone the very, very easy way.

    [photopress:Picture_51.jpg,full,center] I’ve been keeping up with jailbreaking the iPod Touch here on the Help-Keys, and I know its helped a lot of people to open up their hardware. Make no mistake, the iPod Touch is one of the most outstanding pieces of hardware I’ve ever seen, and the work the various hackers developers have been doing with it is amazing. I also feel the iPhone… Read More

  • Help-Key: Jailbreak the 16GB iPod Touch with 1.1.4

    For Help-Key this week (now on Thursday’s, just like LOST), I’d planned to show you how to Jailbreak a 16GB iPod Touch, the one thing the automatic Jailbreaking apps can’t do yet, but I ended up bricking mine. Fortunately, I found a video that details exactly how to do it, and it seems to work fine. While I continue to try to reset mine to factory condition, please enjoy… Read More

  • Help-Key: Placeshifting your home TV to work on the cheap

    [photopress:msnbc.jpg,full,center] We’re all news junkies. That’s what the Internet has done to us. You can sit at your desk and watch all the feeds and refresh, but we still like our news in video form, and that’s what we’re doing here today. Unless you’re working for Ted Turner, you’re likely not in a place to watch TV at your desk, but you need to stay up… Read More

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