Universal Wireless Keyboards for iOS, Android, Windows, Tablets and Computers


As people are increasingly using a variety of computing devices, it’s often necessary to switch between different devices while working. Universal keyboards save space by letting you have a single keyboard at your desk, and switch between devices. So, with one keyboard you can work on your smart phone, tablet, and desktop. Using a single keyboard is helpful because it takes up less space, and you can learn one keyboard rather than three or more. Not all keyboards feature easy switching, so you’ll need to look specifically for that feature.

Typing Efficiency

Laptop keyboards generally have a non-standard placement for arrow keys as well as the CTRL, ALT, Option, Fn (function), and Windows Start key (or Apple Command key). Variations between laptop keyboards, desktop keyboard, and Windows vs. Apple can limit your ability to have high familiarity and efficiency when moving from one computing device to another. Having a single standard keyboard that works on all devices (home, office, mobile) can help.

Keyboard Models

  • Anker® T320 Ultrathin Keyboard – Compatible across Android, iOS, and Windows, enabling you to mix and match with devices.
  • Logitech Wireless All-In-One Keyboard TK820 with Built-In Touchpad – This innovative keyboard seamlessly integrates typing, touch and gestures. So now you have everything you need to control and navigate your computer in one device. With a large, built-in touch pad, you can type and swipe comfortably together. It’s a new way to navigate—especially in Windows 8.
  • Logitech Bluetooth Illuminated Keyboard K810 – Type in style with this elegantly designed, Bluetooth illuminated keyboard for Windows 8. Press one button to instantly switch between typing an email on your Windows PC, taking notes on your Apple iPad or replying to a text on your Android smartphone. With sharp, bright, backlit characters, this keyboard lets you create and communicate more easily on more devices—even in the dark.
  • Microsoft Universal Mobile Keyboard – For iPad, iPhone, Android devices, and Windows tablets. Operating system switch allows you to easily switch between devices.
  • Microsoft Wedge Mobile Keyboard for Windows Tablets – This is a nicely styled keyboard, but primarily for Windows Tablet computers.
  • Minisuit BluBoard – BluBoard supports devices running Bluetooth 3.0 on iOS, Android, Blackberry, Kindle, and Windows. Acer, Blackberry Playbook, Google Nexus, iPad, Mini 2nd Gen, Kindle Fire HD/HDx, Microsoft Surface, Motorola, Samsung Galaxy Note, Tab, and many more!

Photo Gallery

Below are images of the keyboards mentioned above.

Here’s Why Apple Makes the Best Windows Computer

Apple computers have the ability to run Windows, Linux, and Apple operating systems. Here are some reasons why purchasing an Apple laptop or desktop computer is a good decision for Windows users.

  1. Design. Apple computers are known for their beautiful design. This makes them pleasant to interact with.
  2. Displays. Apple has always had nice computer displays and the latest computers include Retina display technology in their laptop and high-end desktop computers. With ambient light sensors and keyboard controlled brightness, you can personalize the display making it very easy on your eyes.
  3. Keyboard. The Apple wireless or wired keyboards are excellent for those working long hours on the computer. The keys have short travel, and entry errors are almost non existent. Apple keyboards feature short-travel keys, which means your fingers don’t need to push the keys down as far, and you can type faster with less effort.
  4. Multiple Operating Systems. Using a product like VMWare Fusion, you can run multiple operating systems on an Apple computer. You can have Apple, Windows, and Linux. If you’re a computer and technical support professional, you’ll likely need to support Apple and Windows computers. With virtual computing, you could have Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 10 running at the same time.
  5. Portability. The newer MacBook computers are thiner and lighter than previous models. The new MacBook, MacBook Air, and MacBook Pro computers are very thin and light.
  6. Security. Although Apple computers aren’t entirely impervious to viruses, they are much more secure than Windows computers.
  7. Space Savings. Apple iMac computers are slim and accommodate an aluminum wireless keyboard that takes up very little desk space.
  8. Touch Pad. For those concerned about repetitive stress injuries, the Apple touchpad is essential. It’s highly accurate, easy to use, and with multiple gestures that require a very light touch.
  9. Voice Dictation. Apple uses the same Siri voice recognition technology in their desktop/laptop operating system as with the iPhone. It’s quite accurate in a quiet environment.


Ransomware Malware Virus Prevention, Protection, and Recovery

About Ransomware

Ransomware malware viruses infect a computer and make the user’s files inaccessible by encrypting them. In some cases the computer is left only partially usable. The user is given some instructions on how to get their files back. Usually this involves communicating directly with someone who will ask you for money before they will let you have access to your files again. They may also promise to fix the computer so that it will function again.

It is estimated that there are presently over 250,000 kinds of ransomware viruses. In 2013, just one of these viruses alone resulted in the extortion of an accumulated $3 million from all its victims before it was taken down by authorities. (source)

Ransomware Prevention

Some antivirus software providers, such as Kaspersky, promise that their software can protect against ransomware. This statement is on the Kaspersky website:

“To protect your computer from ransom malware, download and install Kaspersky Internet Security 2015. The application provides high-level protection against ransom malware.” (source)

Avoid Pop-Up Messages. Another important prevention measure is to be very careful with any unusual pop-up messages. Avoid clicking until you can be certain that the message is legitimate, or simply shut down the computer and restart.

Take Email Precautions. One way of getting ransomware is clicking on links in spam emails. Services like Gmail from Google examine all emails flowing through their system and monitor for malicious activity. So, for example, let’s say there is a fake message claiming to be from FedEx about a package that couldn’t be delivered. Google would likely identify that email as not having authentically been sent from Federal Express. So, it would end up in your spam folder with a notice, “We couldn’t verify that this message was really from the claimed sender” or “We’ve identified other messages like this one that are malicious.”

Use AntiVirus Software. Most antivirus software should prevent virus-like activity even from viruses that were previously unknown. Comprehensive Antivirus software can warn you of known malicious websites. In this way, they make browsing the web safer.

Use an Apple Computer. There are currently over 17 million known Windows computer viruses. The current number of Apple viruses are currently very limited. Apple computers are susceptible to security problems found in Adobe Flash and Java, so it’s important to stay updated. There have been a few fake Apple programs people have been deceived into installing, such as Mac Defender. A report of Apple viruses over the past 10 years is only a few pages long. (source) So, while Apple computers are not completely immune to viruses, they may be a better choice for security minded people.

Ransomware Protection

As described above, there are some preventative measures you can take. Ransomware protection are measures you can take to protect and limit the potential damage of a Ransomware attack.

Backups. Some backup programs run daily to maintain a backup of all your files. This is helpful, except in cases where your files have become corrupted or maliciously encrypted. In some cases, a good backup can be overwritten by a bad one. Also, a connected backup drive is accessible to viruses that might try to erase or encrypt files. In these cases, it may be best to maintain a separate manual backup of your files on a drive that remains disconnected from your computer in a safe place.

Cloud Synchronization. If you use a service like Dropbox to maintain a synchronized cloud copy of your files, make sure you have the ability to access previous versions of your files in the event they get damaged.

Ransomware Recovery

The most recent update about ransomware is an article from Sophos on 30 January 2015. (source) The article states:

Crypto-Ransomware is a family of malware that takes files on a PC or network storage, encrypts them, and then extorts money to unlock the files. … These encryptor malwares will encrypt pictures, documents, and videos, and then leave a ransom note in each directory after encrypting at least one file in that directory. They also typically attempt to do this to mapped network drives [or attached backup drives] as well. … Ransomware-encrypted files for most variants cannot be recovered at all. The encryption keys are not stored on the system. There is one variant which can be recovered, which is discussed below. … W32/VirRnsm-A infects files and changes them to .exe files, including the virus code. It still allows the file to open initially so it has a chance to spread. After a while it locks out the files. The good news is that these files, unlike most ransomware, can be recovered and cleaned by Sophos. A full system scan will fix and recover your files.” (source)

With so many variations of ransomware, it’s unlikely that encrypted files could be recovered unless they happen to be the result of the W32/VirRnsm-A variant.

Yet, some tools from Kaspersky (listed below) suggest that decryption may be possible if you have an original file that’s not encrypted and can compare this to an encrypted file.

Further Reading

Below are ransomware information pages from various sources.

Software Tools

Here are some software tools that might help with removal and/or recovery of files.

  • Kaspersky WindowsUnlocker – The Kaspersky WindowsUnlocker utility is designed to disinfect registries of all operating systems installed on the computer (including operating systems installed on different partitions or in different folders on one partition) and disinfect user registry trees. Kaspersky WindowsUnlocker does not perform any actions with files (in order to disinfect files you can use Kaspersky Rescue Disk).
  • RakhniDecryptor – utility for removing Trojan-Ransom.Win32.Rakhni
  • RannohDecryptor –  If the system is infected by a malicious program of the family Trojan-Ransom.Win32.Rannoh, Trojan-Ransom.Win32.AutoIt, Trojan-Ransom.Win32.Fury, or Trojan-Ransom.Win32.Cryakl, all files on the computer will be encrypted. To decrypt files affected by Trojan-Ransom.Win32.Rannoh, Trojan-Ransom.Win32.AutoIt, Trojan-Ransom.Win32.Fury, Trojan-Ransom.Win32.Crybola or Trojan-Ransom.Win32.Cryakl, use the RannohDecryptor utility.
  • RectorDecryptor – Kaspersky Lab specialists have developed a special utility for decrypting the data encrypted by Trojan-Ransom.Win32.Rector. Cybercriminals use Trojan-Ransom.Win32.Rector for disrupting normal performance of computers and for unauthorized modification of data making it unusable. Once the data has been “taken hostage” (blocked), its owner (user) receives a ransom demand. The victim is supposed to deliver the ransom in exchange for pirate’s promise to send a utility that would restore the data or repair the PC.
  • XoristDecryptor – There is a utility to confront malware of the family Trojan-Ransom.Win32.Xorist, Trojan-Ransom.MSIL.Vandev – XoristDecryptor. Malware of the family Trojan-Ransom.Win32.Xorist, Trojan-Ransom.MSIL.Vandev is designed for unauthorized modification of data on a victim computer. It makes computers uncontrollable or blocks its normal performance. After taking the data as a “hostage” (blocking it), a ransom is demanded from the user. The victim is supposed to deliver the ransom to the pirate, who is promising to send in return a program which would release the data or restore normal performance of the computer.

Instructional Videos

These videos refer to variants of ransomware. They may not be specific to your own experience, but the general information presented should be helpful. These videos provide an insight into the variety of ransomware and what the recovery solutions might be.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_dKBXeoLIFo] [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w_7wUXzhRD8] [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WJagR2txHJU] [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LKy9X–ffw8] [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zcj9RKO3e38]

Windows Update: Avoiding Conflicts, Failures, and Errors

Problem Summary

For many years, Microsoft has issued updates for their software in numerous independent update patches. Even in the Apple Mac environment, software like Microsoft Office 2011 requires many updates after a clean installation.

The most problematic issues arise with Windows updates.

If you have a computer that’s several years old, and you need to perform a system restore (back to factory settings), it will be necessary to install the many hundreds of updates that have been issued since the time the computer was manufactured.

If you follow the prompts to install each batch of updates, which can often be over 100 at a time, some of the updates will conflict with one another. Some updates will be irrelevant. This process is hugely time consuming, and could render the computer useless with repeated bluescreen errors and system failures.

At some point along the way, the system update window may indicate that the computer is up to date. This may be incorrect information. Keep persisting. Restart the computer, and then from the updates window, click the Check for Updates link. It’s common to have many updates, and then have a large Service Pack to install, which has hundreds of required updates.

Even with a brand new very expensive Windows 8.1 computer, you may find that the computer stops working after installing the suggested Windows updates.


The screenshot below is a good example of the problems described above. Click the image for a larger view.


Notice that there are multiple updates for Internet Explorer 8 as well as an update/upgrade to Internet Explorer 11. There are also updates for multiple versions of Microsoft .NET Framework. Most software vendors are able to provide an updated version of their software that includes any updates since the previous major release. With Windows, a major update like a service pack should be able to include all the updates since the previous service pack.

If the Internet Explorer 11 update is installed, then this makes the Internet Explorer 8 updates unnecessary as shown in the notice below.


Problem Solution

The best way to avoid conflicts, failures, and errors with Windows Update is to scroll down to the bottom of the list of available updates and select only 5 to 10 updates at a time. Notice that the checkbox at the top of the list will select and deselect all updates. You can use this first to deselect all updates, and then scroll down and select 5 or 10 updates to install. After each batch, you will likely be prompted to restart the computer. This process can take many hours.

Computer Won’t Startup – Freezes on Bootup

You may have a problem with your Apple or Windows computer where you startup the computer and it will hang on startup. With Windows computers, this may happen immediately after the POST (power on self test screens). With an Apple computer, this may happen before you see the Apple icon at startup.

This problem can be caused by a faulty USB device or USB Hub. For example, some connected hard drives may result in the system hardware attempting to identify the drive, or possibly scan the drive to determine its configuration. Multi-function devices can be perceived as external drives of they have memory card readers.

Try unplugging all unnecessary USB devices, then startup the computer, and then connect the devices again. This may speed up the startup process.

Something else that may slow down the startup process are synchronization applications for services like Dropbox, Box, Google Drive, and Microsoft OneDrive. Try configuring these mini-apps to not load at startup. That will likely speed up the startup process. You may want to choose just one synchronization drive service.

Migrating Email and Contacts from Windows to Apple


This page describes how to copy email messages and other content from a Windows computer to an Apple Mac OS X computer.


Apple OS X has a migration assistant that is designed to simplify the process of switching from Windows to Mac. However, the migration assistant sometimes doesn’t work, or it can create a mess if you’re bringing in a lot of files you don’t want (it’s not selective). Sometimes manually bringing in your data is best.


It would be nice if you could copy your Windows Mail or Outlook Express user profile files to an Apple computer and have Apple Mail import these. However, Apple and/or Microsoft aren’t permitting this. Follow these instructions to make the transfer:

  1. Install Mozilla Thunderbird on your Windows computer.
  2. Download the Thunderbird Import Export Tools Add-on.
  3. Import/Export Tools. From the Thunderbird Tools menu, you can choose Ad-ons. Then choose Install (you may need to click on the little gear if you have the latest version of Thunderbird), then choose the Import Export add-on file you just downloaded in step #2 above. This will install the additional import/export features. You’ll need to restart Thunderbird for the new features to be activated.
  4. Messages. You’ll first want to import all mail account information from whatever client you were using on your Windows computer into the Thunderbird program.
  5. At this point, now that you’ve imported everything into Thunderbird, you can use the Export feature in Thunderbird to export your mailboxes (from the Tools menu).
  6. As an alternative to step #5, you could copy the entire user profile folder. The profile folder is in a hidden folder under your user account.
    • For Windows XP, it’s in the Documents and Settings > UserName > Application Data > Thunderbird > Profiles.
    • For Windows Vista, Windows 7, or later, it’s under Users > UserName > AppData > Roaming > Thunderbird > Profiles.
    • The profile folder will be named with random characters. You’ll want to copy the entire profile folder onto a USB flash drive or other drive to be read by the Apple computer and converted.
  7. Contacts. It may be necessary to separately export your contacts to a contacts file from the mail system you’re using. Or, import them into Thunderbird and have them included in the transfer separately.
    • The process for exporting contacts depends on what email system you’re using. In Thunderbird, go to Address Book > Tools > Export and choose LDIF format. Or, in other systems, if vCard is available, use that file format.
  8. At this point, you should have copied your exported contacts and files (or the user profile folder) onto a USB flash drive or other drive.
  9. On the Apple computer, from the Mail program, choose Import Mailboxes from the File menu. Then select Import data from Thunderbird. The process should bring in your mailboxes and put them in a folder in Mail under the On My Computer heading.
  10. For the contacts, on the Apple computer, open Contacts, then from the File menu, choose Import and select the contacts file you created in step #7 above. This will bring the contacts into your Apple contacts directory.


Migrating Favorites/Bookmarks From Windows to Apple Mac

If you’re a user of Internet Explorer on Windows and moving to Apple, follow these instructions to get your Favorites/Bookmarks moved over.

Google Cloud Solution

It’s possible to use Google Chrome to transfer your bookmarks by following these steps:

  1. Using Google Chrome, you can sign-in using your Google/Gmail login. Usually Chrome will ask you to sign-in, or you can find it on the menu (three lines found at top right).
  2. Once you’re signed in, the Bookmarks will automatically synchronize with your Google account to any Chrome browser.
  3. So, using the Import Bookmarks and Settings (found under Bookmarks in the Chrome menu) import bookmarks from Internet Explorer and Firefox.
  4. Then these will be synchronized and accessible on any computer or device where you are logged in with Chrome.

Manual Transfer

To manually transfer your Bookmarks follow these instructions:

  1. Go to Chrome, and from the menu choose Bookmarks > Import Bookmarks and Settings.
  2. Select Internet Explorer and/or Firefox as needed for importing.
  3. Then, once all bookmarks are imported, go to Bookmarks > Bookmark Manager > Organize > Export Bookmarks to HTML file.
  4. Put that file on a USB flash drive and put it on your Apple computer.
  5. In Google Chrome, from the Menu, choose Bookmarks > Import Bookmarks and Settings.
  6. On the From dropdown selection menu, select Bookmarks HTML File, then click Choose File.
  7. Select the file you exported in step 3 and 4.
  8. The Bookmarks will be imported and put in a folder called Imported from IE or Imported from Firefox.

Setup Microsoft Windows 8 With Local Account


It’s helpful to have a local user account on your Windows 8 computer in case something happens to your Microsoft online account. The instructions on this page are applicable for Windows 8.1 and Windows 10.

Benefits of a Local Account

Sometimes we forget our password, or an online account gets hacked into. Usually there are online steps we can follow to try and recover our password or account.

However, with Microsoft Windows, if you are logging into the computer with your Microsoft online account username and password, and the account is compromised you won’t be able to get into your computer. You’ll be locked out of all your files and programs, and you won’t be able to get online to fix the problem.

With a local user account, the login will always work regardless of what’s going on with your online account. Having an extra administrative user account on the computer (as a back door) will let you gain access to the computer if another user account on the computer becomes infected with malware or for some other reason won’t permit a login. So, for this reason it’s important to have a local user account.


During the Windows 8 setup process, you’ll be presented with a screen like the one below that asks you to “Sign in to your Microsoft account.” Click the image below to enlarge.


If you want to use a local user account instead, it won’t be clear what you should do at this point. Click the link that says, “Create a new account.” Even though you don’t want a new account, this takes you to a screen (example below) where you can choose to setup a local account. Click the image below to enlarge.


Click the link that says “Sign in without a Microsoft account.” Elsewhere this link may be accompanied by a warning that states “Not Recommended.”

You’ll be taken to a screen (shown below) where you can setup a local account. Click the image to enlarge.


Provide a username, password, and password hint.

Why So Difficult?

At this point, you might be wondering why Microsoft makes it difficult to setup a local user account. The reason is because they would like to get as many people as possible setting up online Microsoft user accounts.

Having a local user account on a computer synchronized with the Microsoft cloud services can be very valuable in terms of accumulating information about each person and computer. This big data has aggregate value — either to advertisers, or to Microsoft for their own research and system development.


Helpful Built-in Windows Utilities and Apps

Here are some helpful built-in Windows utilities and apps.

  • Energy Audit. From the Start menu, search for CMD. When you find it, right click and run as Administrator. At the command prompt, type powercfg – energy and then press enter. Be sure to put the spaces between the words and the hyphen. A report called energy-report.html will be placed in your Windows \ System32 folder. To open the report you need to copy it to another location such as your desktop.
  • Erase Unused Space. This is achieved at the command line by typing: cipher /w:X (the X is the drive letter).
  • GodMode. This is a feature that creates shortcuts for all Windows configuration settings and controls and puts them in a single folder. Simply create a new folder and name it:
  • Reliability Analysis. It’s possible to track your computer’s reliability using the View Reliability History utility. To find this utility, go to the start menu and type reliability.
  • Screen Recorder for Diagnostics. Windows includes a screen recorder for diagnostics. It’s called the Problem Screen Recorder. To run it, just type psr at the Start Menu.
  • Window Move / Adjust Shortcut. Here are some shortcuts to adjusting Windows.
    • Maximize. Pressing the Windows menu key, and the up arrow, maximizes the current window.
    • Restore. Pressing the Windows menu key, and the down arrow, restores the current window if it is maximized.
    • Minimize. Pressing the Windows menu key, and the down arrow, minimizes the current window if it is not maximized.
    • Side / Middle Placement. When you want to send a window to the left or right, use the Windows button and the right or left arrow. When used repeatedly these will put your window in the middle of the screen also.
    • Switch Monitors. If you have two monitors, when you press the Windows button and an arrow key (right or left) the window will jump to the other display.