Monday, July 6, 2015

Free Way to Convert PDF Documents to Word, Excel and Powerpoint Formats

Many of our clients have asked if there is a way to convert their PDF documents to Word, Excel or PowerPoint formats without the need to purchase expensive software like Adobe Standard or Pro. We did some research on the subject and found that this task can be performed by using Microsoft's OneDrive service.. Below we will outline the steps necessary to perform this task.

NOTE: If you have Office 2013 you can skip the steps below. This version of Word has a built in feature that automatically converts PDF documents to Word documents. Simply open up the PDF document you wish to convert within Word 2013 and you're done.

  1. If you don't already have a Microsoft Live account you'll need to create one by clicking here and going to their website.

    You do not have to create a new email address to make a Microsoft Live account. When asked for your User Name you can enter in your current email address and it will be used to sign in.

    If you already have a Microsoft Live account click here to sign in.
  2. After you sign into your account you will need to upload the PDF file that you want to convert. You can do this by clicking on the Upload drop down list at the top of the screen and selecting Files.
  3. Navigate to the file that you wish to convert, highlight it and then click Open at the bottom of the screen.
  4. After the file has been uploaded click on the bubble in the upper right hand side of the file you just uploaded to select it. Then click on the Open in Word Online link at the top of the screen.
  5. When the file opens click on the Edit in Word link at the top right of the screen. When the File Conversion pop up window appears click on Convert.
  6. A window may appear that informs you that layout changes may have been made to the PDF during the conversion process.
  7. After you close that window click on the OneDrive link at the top left side of the screen.
  8. If you navigate through OneDrive to the folder in which you originally uploaded the PDF you should now see both a PDF and Word version of the file.
  9. Click on the bubble in the upper right of the Word document you just created to highlight it. Then click on the Download link at the top of the screen.
  10. Navigate to the location you downloaded the file too and double click it to open it up in Word.
At this point you should be able to edit the PDF document using Word.

We hope that you've found this information useful. If you have any questions, problems or notice any inaccuracies please feel free to comment below.

Thanks for reading!

Waiting on the Windows 10 release? You may have to wait a little longer.

The internet is buzzing with positive reviews from those that have been working with the beta version of Microsoft's Windows 10 and word is spreading quickly.

Windows 8 and 8.1 did not receive the warm welcome Microsoft had hoped for among consumers largely due to it's tablet-like graphic interface. While 8.1 saw a make shift revival of the coveted and frequently used "Start Button" many people have expressed their disdain for the operating system. In many cases our customers come to us specifically asking for computers with Windows 7.

For one year Microsoft is giving away free Windows 10 upgrades to current users of Windows 7, 8 and 8.1. Windows 10 also delivers a more familiar experience than it's predecessor which has many end users breathing a sigh of relief and very excited for it's July 29th release date. Unfortunately, many of those patiently waiting to get their hands on Windows 10 may have to wait a little longer according to Microsoft.

Patience is a virtue and in this case we feel that Microsoft is making the right move by releasing Windows 10 in waves.

The first to receive the new Windows 10 update will be those that have been helping Microsoft test out the newest operating system through the "Windows Insider Program". According to Terry Myerson who is Microsoft's executive vice president of operating systems Microsoft "will start notifying reserved systems in waves, slowly scaling up after July 29th." This is similar to the way Apple has released iOS updates in the past.

We have been telling our clients for a while now that they shouldn't attempt to install Windows 10 as soon as it's released. Especially in production environments where any glitches or kinks could end up costing their business time and money. By releasing the update in waves Microsoft is giving itself time to resolve as many issues as possible before it's widely released. It also makes a lot of sense in terms of the strain an "all at once release" would put on Microsoft's back-end infrastructure.

Here at Tomlin Tech we've had some time to play around with the latest operating system and we think that it'll be worth the wait.

Thanks for reading!

Thursday, July 2, 2015

25 Passwords that Hackers Expect You to Use

When it comes to securing online accounts the first line of defense is your password. There are many best practices that you should use when choosing and protecting your passwords but we will save that information for another post. The purpose of this post is to inform you of the 25 most frequently used passwords. If you use any of the passwords on this list we highly recommend changing them something more secure.

The following data was compiled by the gurus over at Splash Data

  1. 123456
  2. password
  3. 12345
  4. 12345678
  5. qwerty
  6. 123456789
  7. 1234
  8. baseball
  9. dragon
  10. football
  11. 1234567
  12. monkey
  13. letmein
  14. abc123
  15. 111111
  16. mustang
  17. access
  18. shadow
  19. master
  20. michael
  21. superman
  22. 696969
  23. 123123
  24. batman
  25. trustno1
As an IT Consultant I've seen many of these passwords used frequently. If you read this list and realize that you currently use one or more of these passwords your account is not secure. 

Beyond the fact that they are so commonly used you'll also notice that very few of them use a combination of numbers and letters. We also highly recommend including a symbol as well as a mixture of capital and lowercase letters. These types of passwords are known as "High Complexity" and are much harder to crack.

We hope this information was useful to keeping your accounts safe and more secure. Thank you for reading!