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Mastering Plex Media: The 25+ Best Tips, Tricks, Tutorials, and Guides

We have all the tips, tricks, tutorials, and guides you’ll need to become a full-fledged master of Plex Media. Newbies and veterans, welcome!

Have you ever wanted to run your own personal Netflix-type service within your own home? Imagine if you could load up all of your digital movies, TV shows, music, and more onto a single device, then be able to stream it on any device on the same internet network.

Well, Plex lets you do that—and so much more. Plex is one of the best home media solutions available today. And the best part? It’s free to use! There are some non-essential convenience features that do require a paid subscription, but they’re truly non-essential. The best bits of Plex are, indeed, all free.

If you’ve never even heard of Plex before, you’ll want to check out our complete newbie’s guide to Plex. It’s long, it’s comprehensive, and it’s everything you need to get started even with zero knowledge.

Choosing a Device as Your Plex Media Server

best-solutions-plex

The beauty of Plex is that it can run on many devices: most computers, certain gaming consoles, network-attached storage (NAS) drives, and even some routers. Perfect for an always-on home media streaming solution!

If you just want to stream Plex off of your laptop or computer, check out our Plex newbie guide that was linked up above!

Configuring Your Plex Media Server

Once the Plex software is installed and running on your device of choice, you’ll want to get it properly set up for your needs. Check out these tips and tricks that we’ve compiled over the years:

More Plex Tips and Tricks

plex library

The general idea of Plex is simple—you select what you want to stream, and stream it—but you can take things up another level with some of the tips and tricks below:

An Even Better Plex Experience

The default Plex software is pretty great right out of the box. However, you can definitely improve the experience using third-party software, apps, and plugins that Plex fans have created over the years:

Understanding Plex’s Paid Features

If you’ve gotten this far, you might be wondering what kinds of  “non-essential” features are hidden behind Plex’s paid subscription called Plex Pass:

Alternatives to Plex Media Server

Plex is arguably the best at what it does, but there are several alternatives out there in case you find that Plex isn’t exactly the right solution for you:

Read the full article: Mastering Plex Media: The 25+ Best Tips, Tricks, Tutorials, and Guides

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How to Win at Facebook: 50+ Tips and Tricks You Should Know

Have you been using Facebook wrong this whole time? With these tips and tricks, you can unlock the full power of Facebook and make it work wonders for you.

Facebook has made all kinds of headlines for its controversial practices, yet people all over the world still use it. It’s hard to get by without Facebook when everyone you know uses it, so we don’t blame you if you haven’t jumped ship yet.

If you’ve decided that you’re still going to use Facebook, make sure you’re doing everything in your power to use it well. Don’t let it be a time sink. Don’t let Facebook have access to all your personal data. Don’t make mistakes that’ll embarrass you in front of friends and family. Here’s everything you need to know to become a master at Facebook.

Never seriously used Facebook before? We recommend starting with these articles for complete beginners:

Facebook Etiquette for Newbies

As with all things social, the Facebook platform has developed its own set of etiquette that users should be aware of (on top of general courtesy and decency that you should already be practicing). Here’s what you need to know:

Essential Tips and Tricks

One of the more frustrating parts of Facebook is not being able to figure out how to do something simple, like switching to another profile or preventing someone from showing up in your feed. Here are the key tips everyone should know as a Facebook user:

Advanced Tips and Tricks

In addition to the basic tips above, there are some cool things you can do with Facebook that may or may not be useful in your case. Might as well check them out and see if they are, though, right? Here are some more advanced tips that you shouldn’t overlook:

For Mobile Users

facebook-tips-tricks

If you mainly use Facebook on your smartphone or tablet, we have a few specialized tips that may help take your Facebook experience to the next level. Here’s what you need to know:

For Facebook Messenger

Facebook Privacy and Security: Issues and Concerns

facebook-new-privacy-settings

Online privacy and personal data security are the biggest question marks surrounding Facebook right now. Whether you’re stuck using Facebook against your will or you just can’t let go, be prudent and protect yourself to the best of your ability. Here’s everything you need to know:

And it gets worse!

Troubleshooting Facebook Problems

You’re bound to run into problems with Facebook at some point. For when you do, we recommend bookmarking our article dedicated to the most common Facebook problems you’re likely to run into and how to solve them yourself:

Image Credit: TarasMalyarevich/Depositphotos

Read the full article: How to Win at Facebook: 50+ Tips and Tricks You Should Know

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Ultimate Microsoft Office Mastery: 90+ Tips, Tricks, and Tutorials for You

Use Microsoft Office every day? Check out our tips, tricks, and tutorials that’ll turn you into an efficiency machine with both Microsoft Word and Microsoft Excel.

Microsoft Office is powerful; there’s a reason why nearly every serious business in the world relies on it for office productivity. Yes, Microsoft Office can be daunting to learn, what with all of its crazy menus and features—but it doesn’t have to be difficult at all.

If you use either Microsoft Word or Microsoft Excel on a regular basis and want to become a more fluent user, we have all kinds of tips, tricks, and tutorials that’ll help you effortlessly learn the ins and outs of each program. You’ll be a master in no time!

Getting Started With Microsoft Office

If you’re a new user, or if you don’t even have Microsoft Office yet, you may want to check out our articles on how to acquire a copy of Microsoft Office for free—without breaking the law. Did you know you can even use Microsoft Office on Linux computers?

Once Microsoft Office is installed, you may also want to make a few tweaks and install a few add-ins that’ll ease your overall experience:

Mastering Microsoft Word

microsoft-word-auto-update

Beginner Tips for Microsoft Word

The first step to getting comfortable with Microsoft Word is making sure it’s set up properly. With a few tweaks to the settings, and some familiarity with basic features, you’ll feel much more at home when using the software:

And then once you’re comfortable with Microsoft Word, that’s when you’ll want to check out our various tutorials on how to do things with it, which will give you a quick boost to productivity:

Advanced Tips for Microsoft Word

After acquainting yourself with the basics of Microsoft Word, that’s when you’ll be ready to try full-fledged projects that are more than just simple essays and typed reports. Here are some of the cooler things you can do with Microsoft Word:

Useful Templates for Microsoft Word

Don’t have time to make new documents from scratch? You aren’t alone. That’s why you should check out our roundups of the best Microsoft Word templates for all kinds of needs and use-cases:

Mastering Microsoft Excel

For many, Excel is the much tougher software compared to Word. Numbers and formulas will do that to you. That’s why before you dive into our Excel tips and tricks, we recommend starting with these introductory articles:

Beginner Tips for Microsoft Excel

The first and most important skill to learn in Microsoft Excel is understanding worksheets and tabs. Check out our beginner articles that teach you how to set up, edit, recover, and compare Excel worksheets with ease:

And then learn the other essential skills that’ll give you a leg up when it comes to creating and modifying Excel spreadsheets. There’s a lot of cool stuff you can do, and most of it’s quite easy once you know how to do them:

Advanced Tips for Microsoft Excel

Microsoft Excel is a powerhouse application, and with a bit of know-how, you can effortlessly pull off some crazy cool tasks. Here are some of the more advanced techniques you can use to manage your Excel worksheets:

And there are plenty of more advanced tricks you can use to automate much of the process when dealing with complex Excel spreadsheets, and these automations will save a ton of time over the long run:

Useful Templates for Microsoft Excel

Who has the time to build new Excel spreadsheets from scratch? Whether for personal or business use, you should consider downloading one of the many free templates available on the web and customizing it to your specific needs:

Read the full article: Ultimate Microsoft Office Mastery: 90+ Tips, Tricks, and Tutorials for You

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The Raspberry Pi Hub: 45+ Tips, Tricks, Tutorials, and Guides

We have all the tips, tricks, tutorials, and guides you’ll need to become a full-fledged master of the Raspberry Pi. Newbies and veterans, welcome!

The Raspberry Pi is a single-board computer, a fancy term for any tiny-yet-fully-operational computer that’s built on a single circuit board. It can do everything that a normal computer can—such as run software, connect to the internet, control USB devices, and more—although the computing power and speed of a Raspberry Pi falls short of modern desktop CPUs. Its main selling point? Small size and cheap price!

Still not sure what a Raspberry Pi is, exactly? Want to know why it’s called Raspberry Pi? Who invented the Raspberry Pi and when was it launched? Why are there different Raspberry Pi models and what are the differences? Learn all of that and more in our newbie’s introduction to the Raspberry Pi.

What Can You Do With a Raspberry Pi?

Kano's take on the Raspberry Pi laptop

You’d be surprised how much a small little device like a Raspberry Pi can do. All you need is a bit of know-how and some elbow grease. For Raspberry Pi virgins, we recommend the following articles to get a sense of the Raspberry Pi’s capabilities:

Media Streaming

One of the most practical ways to use a Raspberry Pi is to turn it into a home media server. With it, you can load movies and TV shows onto the device and stream it to any internet-capable device—including TVs, computers, smartphones, and tablets.

You can also create your own DIY versions of popular media devices:

Gaming

TheRaspberry Pi can be quite handy for retro gaming enthusiasts, allowing you to build your own gaming consoles using emulator software and gaming accessories:

Or you can use the Raspberry Pi as a cheap server box for dedicated servers:

Home Office Hacks

The Raspberry Pi is more than a gimmick. When used in the right way, it can be insanely practical and beneficial to productivity. If you want to do something with it, you probably can—your imagination is the limit:

More Cool Ideas

Getting Started With a Raspberry Pi: Basic Setup

Raspberry Pi 2

Getting started with your first Raspberry Pi can be daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. Our guides will take you through the steps you need, explaining everything you need to know. You’ll be comfortable and confident in no time:

Apps and Accessories for Your Raspberry Pi

official raspberry pi 4 case

To really get the most out of your Raspberry Pi, you’ll want to incorporate a few accessories as well as some freely available apps. None of these are essential, but will prove useful and convenient on your road to becoming a Raspberry Pi master:

Troubleshooting Your Raspberry Pi

Trying to fix a Raspberry Pi that’s gone awry can be tough—it is, after all, a full-fledged computer that’s prone to errors. However, with the following tips and tricks under your belt, you’ll be able to solve most issues that you may encounter:

Other Operating Systems for Your Raspberry Pi

Raspbian is the official operating system that comes pre-installed on Raspberry Pi devices. Don’t like it? The good news is, you can always go ahead and install a different operating system if you want to. Perfect for tinkerers!

Can’t decide on one specific operating system?

Read the full article: The Raspberry Pi Hub: 45+ Tips, Tricks, Tutorials, and Guides

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The Raspberry Pi Hub: 45+ Tips, Tricks, Tutorials, and Guides

We have all the tips, tricks, tutorials, and guides you’ll need to become a full-fledged master of the Raspberry Pi. Newbies and veterans, welcome!

The Raspberry Pi is a single-board computer, a fancy term for any tiny-yet-fully-operational computer that’s built on a single circuit board. It can do everything that a normal computer can—such as run software, connect to the internet, control USB devices, and more—although the computing power and speed of a Raspberry Pi falls short of modern desktop CPUs. Its main selling point? Small size and cheap price!

Still not sure what a Raspberry Pi is, exactly? Want to know why it’s called Raspberry Pi? Who invented the Raspberry Pi and when was it launched? Why are there different Raspberry Pi models and what are the differences? Learn all of that and more in our newbie’s introduction to the Raspberry Pi.

What Can You Do With a Raspberry Pi?

Kano's take on the Raspberry Pi laptop

You’d be surprised how much a small little device like a Raspberry Pi can do. All you need is a bit of know-how and some elbow grease. For Raspberry Pi virgins, we recommend the following articles to get a sense of the Raspberry Pi’s capabilities:

Media Streaming

One of the most practical ways to use a Raspberry Pi is to turn it into a home media server. With it, you can load movies and TV shows onto the device and stream it to any internet-capable device—including TVs, computers, smartphones, and tablets.

You can also create your own DIY versions of popular media devices:

Gaming

TheRaspberry Pi can be quite handy for retro gaming enthusiasts, allowing you to build your own gaming consoles using emulator software and gaming accessories:

Or you can use the Raspberry Pi as a cheap server box for dedicated servers:

Home Office Hacks

The Raspberry Pi is more than a gimmick. When used in the right way, it can be insanely practical and beneficial to productivity. If you want to do something with it, you probably can—your imagination is the limit:

More Cool Ideas

Getting Started With a Raspberry Pi: Basic Setup

Raspberry Pi 2

Getting started with your first Raspberry Pi can be daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. Our guides will take you through the steps you need, explaining everything you need to know. You’ll be comfortable and confident in no time:

Apps and Accessories for Your Raspberry Pi

official raspberry pi 4 case

To really get the most out of your Raspberry Pi, you’ll want to incorporate a few accessories as well as some freely available apps. None of these are essential, but will prove useful and convenient on your road to becoming a Raspberry Pi master:

Troubleshooting Your Raspberry Pi

Trying to fix a Raspberry Pi that’s gone awry can be tough—it is, after all, a full-fledged computer that’s prone to errors. However, with the following tips and tricks under your belt, you’ll be able to solve most issues that you may encounter:

Other Operating Systems for Your Raspberry Pi

Raspbian is the official operating system that comes pre-installed on Raspberry Pi devices. Don’t like it? The good news is, you can always go ahead and install a different operating system if you want to. Perfect for tinkerers!

Can’t decide on one specific operating system?

Read the full article: The Raspberry Pi Hub: 45+ Tips, Tricks, Tutorials, and Guides

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The Ultimate Online Shopping Guide: 50+ Essential Tips, Tricks, and Secrets

We have all the tips, tricks, tutorials, and guides you’ll need to become a master of shopping online. Find better deals, avoid tricky scams, and save money!

Online shopping has exploded so much in the past decade that brick-and-mortar stores are closing in response. And in America, over half of all online shopping is done through Amazon. With free two-day shipping via Amazon Prime, it’s no wonder that people are coming to rely on the e-commerce giant for nearly everything.

But online shopping can be a huge money sink if you aren’t careful. On the one hand, it’s incredibly easy to overspend if you’re careless; on the other hand, you can save a LOT of money if you’re patient and know how to snag deals and bargains as they come.

Here’s what you need to know about being a better, smarter, and faster online shopper.

The Best Sites for Online Shopping

Amazon is the king of all online retailers, and that won’t be changing anytime soon. But that doesn’t mean you always have to shop at Amazon. Indeed, you might want to shop elsewhere for any number of reasons:

Where to Shop Online for Specific Items

At the end of the day, there are dozens of excellent online retailers out there. Many of them are niche and specialized in a certain category of items, so don’t expect to find a full-blown replacement for Amazon. Rather, when you’re in the market for something specific, consider these sites instead:

Tips When Shopping on Amazon

amazon-prime-benefits

It’s hard not to shop on Amazon these days. The next time you find yourself browsing the available wares, make sure you employ these tips and tricks to make sure you’re always getting the best deals and making the most of what Amazon offers:

Every so often, you’ll run into issues when shopping on Amazon. Don’t get too hung up on it as that’s to be expected with an operation as monolithic as Amazon. Just take the necessary steps to avoid scams and rectify issues:

If you find yourself ordering from Amazon often, you may want to consider upgrading to Amazon Prime. It’s not too expensive and comes with all kinds of benefits beyond free two-day shipping:

Tips When Shopping on eBay

ebay-black-friday

Want to buy something used or unusual? You’ll probably find it on eBay. As one of the world’s largest online marketplaces, you’ll find all kinds of stuff that you won’t elsewhere. Just be careful and always triple-check listings before committing to a purchase:

Tips When Shopping on AliExpress

aliexpress-safety

AliExpress offers some of the cheapest prices you’ll find anywhere on the internet, but it comes at a price: slow shipping speeds and higher risk of fraudulent goods. Here’s what you need to know before ordering anything on AliExpress:

How to Effortlessly Find Bargains, Deals, and Coupons

Hunting deals and coupons can be mentally exhausting. Fortunately, there are all kinds of websites, apps, and tools out there that will handle it for you. For very little effort, you can save tons of money with every purchase:

When Online Shopping Goes Wrong

Have you been scammed by an online retailer? Is a company refusing to honor their refund policy? Want to put an online shop on blast for terrible customer service? Check out these handy sites that let you do just that:

More Online Shopping Tips

Read the full article: The Ultimate Online Shopping Guide: 50+ Essential Tips, Tricks, and Secrets

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Become an Overnight Netflix Pro: 50+ Tips and Tricks You Should Know

Whether you’re thinking about getting Netflix or you’ve been a subscriber for years, we have all the tips and tricks you’ll need to get the most entertainment for your dollar.

Netflix remains the king of online streaming services despite all the competition that has cropped up over the years. It’s easy to use, has a large library of original and licensed content, and can be watched from pretty much any internet-connected device—not to mention that Netflix now supports offline viewing via downloads!

Don’t have a Netflix account yet? Not sure if it’s worth getting in your situation? It’s true, Netflix isn’t right for everyone. That’s why we recommend reading these important articles before you dive in with a free 30-day trial of Netflix:

New to Netflix? Get Started With the Basics

Guy pointing remote at Netflix on TV

Everyone knows that Netflix is an online streaming service for movies and TV series, but it’s understandable if you have questions beyond that. Here are a few articles that’ll help you get better acquainted with what Netflix offers:

Essential Netflix Tips and Tricks

Once you start using Netflix for the first time, there are a few things tweaks you’ll want to make to improve the viewing experience:

Do you watch Netflix on a smartphone, tablet, or TV? Check out these tips:

Advanced Netflix Tips and Tricks

After you’ve been using Netflix for a few months, you’ll want to take things even further with some tips and tricks that will impress your friends and family.

For example, if you want to watch Netflix content that isn’t available in your country:

Netflix also has “secret codes” that you can use to discover tons of content that may not be immediately discoverable through the usual menus:

Problems With Netflix? Common Issues and Fixes

fix-netflix

Sometimes you may run into problems when trying to watch Netflix. These issues could stem from the device or app you’re on, the internet connection you’re using, etc. Check out our articles on how to get Netflix working again:

What to Watch on Netflix: Our Recommendations

There’s a lot of stuff to watch on Netflix, if only you know where to look. Our team at MakeUseOf has watched hundreds of combined hours of Netflix content, and we’ll point you to all the best stuff to watch so you don’t waste any time:

Documentary

Drama

Comedy

Animated

Seasonal

Read the full article: Become an Overnight Netflix Pro: 50+ Tips and Tricks You Should Know

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How to Conquer Your Inbox: Tips for Email Productivity and Security

We have all the tips, tricks, and tutorials you’ll need to master your inbox and overcome stress. Keep reading to effortlessly level up your productivity and security with email.

We’re well into the 21st century, yet email is still engrained in daily life. No matter how much you might want to, you just can’t escape email. It’s here to stay—and if you feel like email causes you undue stress, then it’s time to do something about it!

Fortunately, we have decades of email experience under our belts. We’ll show you everything you need to know to conquer your email once and for all, rather than being overwhelmed every time you open up your inbox.

Choosing the Right Email Provider for You

The first step to conquering your email anxiety is making sure you’re using the right email provider. There are plenty to choose from—and many of them are free—but they aren’t all made equal. Don’t settle for what everyone else is using:

And don’t forget to use an email client app that suits you:

Mastering Gmail: Tips, Tricks, and Guides

If you’ve decided on Gmail as your email provider of choice, there’s a lot to learn if you want to become a true master. While Gmail is easy to learn and simple to use, there are lots of interesting features hidden in the shadows.

Gmail tips for new users:

Gmail tips for beginner users:

Gmail tips for advanced users:

Gmail tips for improved security:

Mastering Outlook: Tips, Tricks, and Guides

outlook-any-platform

Perhaps, like most office workers, you’re forced into using Microsoft Outlook for email. Feeling stuck and frustrated? Things will be much better once you know how to make Outlook work for you. Soon enough, you won’t be fighting against it anymore!

Outlook tips for new users:

Outlook tips for beginner users:

Outlook tips for advanced users:

Outlook tips for improved security:

Essential Tips for Email Productivity

ways-write-email

Get more done in less time—that’s our motto when it comes to email management. It’s easier said than done, but fortunately we have plenty of tips and tricks you can use to be more efficient with email:

Essential Tips for Email Security and Privacy

A hacked email inbox can lead to all kinds of headaches: leaked information, other accounts getting hacked, stolen identities, and more. Keep your own email inbox safe using these tips:

Essential Tips for Smartphone Emails

block-emails-iphone

Are you the type of person who’s always checking your email while you’re out and about? It can be a huge time-sink, which is why you should check out these email tips for Android and iPhone users:

For Android

For iPhone

How to Write Better Emails

Regardless of which email providers or email clients you use, it’s important to keep email etiquette in mind. More than just making sure you don’t offend anyone, you want to write your emails so they’ll be as effective and productive as possible:

Other Nifty Email Tips and Tricks to Know

Want to take your email mastery to even greater heights? Check out these helpful explainers, tricks, and goodies that you can use to impress your friends:

Read the full article: How to Conquer Your Inbox: Tips for Email Productivity and Security