Windows 10 Quick Assist

Run Windows 10 ‘Quick Assist’ to remotely assist someone with their PC.

‘Quick Assist’ , available from version 20H2 onwards, requires a Microsoft account.

  1. Right-click the Start button
  2. Click Search
  3. Type Quick Assist and hit Enter on your keyboard
  4. Ask remote user to do the same
  5. On your PC, click Assist another person
  6. Select your Microsoft account and login
  7. Give the six-digit code (see screenshot above) to the remote user to enter into the ‘Code from assistant’ box
  8. Remote user then clicks Share screen
  9. Assistant then chooses either Take full control of their PC or View only their desktop
  10. Remote user then clicks  Allow

Once connected, you can use the toolbar at the top to open a chat window, annotate the screen and pause or end the session


Windows 10 Edge New Tab Redirect

Google “Edge New Tab Redirect” to find Microsoft page to install extension

Edge New Tab Redirect Overview
Allows a user to provide the URL of the page that loads in a new tab.

Allows you to change the new tab page to the New Tab Redirect app page, or a custom URL of your choice!

Choose from chrome’s about pages, *NewTab, Extensions, Downloads, History*, a few popular URLs, or provide your own. Your custom tab can also be a local file, allowing you to create your own new tab page. Saving blank text will cause your new tab to be about:blank.

Files can begin with: file:\\, file://, and file:///

Important: This is not meant to replace your homepage, only new tabs. If your browser is set to load the New Tab page as your homepage, there may be odd consequences.

Blacklist or Whitelist WiFi Network Names

Windows terminal commands to Blacklist WiFi names (SSID’s) from view or Whitelist your own name (SSID) and block all others from view

Blacklist method

Block WiFi name:

netsh wlan add filter permission=block ssid="name" networktype=infrastructure

Unblock WiFi name:

netsh wlan delete filter permission=block ssid="name" networktype=infrastructure

Show all the Filters:

netsh wlan show filters

Whitelist method

Allow your own WiFi:

netsh wlan add filter permission=allow ssid="name" networktype=infrastructure

Deny all other WiFi:

netsh wlan add filter permission=denyall networktype=infrastructure

Delete deny all other WiFi filter:

netsh wlan delete filter permission=denyall networktype=infrastructure

Wine Dotnet install conflicts

If, for example, when installing  dotnet40 via winetricks you get the following error:

$ winetricks dotnet45
Executing w_do_call dotnet45
error: dotnet45 conflicts with dotnet40, which is already installed.

Run the following command to override and force through change

$ winetricks --force dotnet452




Chrome Remote Desktop Client Set Up

  1. On client PC open Chrome (or New Edge) and log into client Google account
  2. Browse to Chrome Remote Desktop Set-up page URL below:
  3. In section titled Set up remote access and click download icon
  4. In Chrome Web Store click Add to Chrome to add extension
  5. In Add “Chrome Remote Desktop” dialog click Add extension
  6. Close “Chrome Remote Desktop has been added” dialog box – optionally click Turn on sync
  7. In Ready to install dialog box click Accept & Install
  8. In Open download dialog box to allow extension to open click Yes
  9. In Account Control click Yes to make change
  10. In Choose a name box Enter a name for your computer or accept displayed default and click Next
  11. In Choose a PIN enter new PIN and click Start
  12. In Account Control click Yes to make change and start host
  13. In This Device box click bin icon to disable remote connection
  14. This completes the installation

Allow Remote Connection

  1. On client PC open Chrome (or New Edge) and log into client Google account
  2. Browse to Chrome Remote Desktop Support page URL below:
  3. In Share this screen box click Generate Code to generate a one-time access code
  4. Give this access code code to the Chrome Remote Desktop user
  5. In the Chrome Remote Desktop dialog that pops-up click Share to allow Chrome Remote Desktop user access to your screen and PC


Change Google’s Glaring White Home Page Background

In Chrome and New Edge install Custom Style Script add-on to override Google’s home page background colour

In Custom Style Script select Open options Page and add the following URL and CSS

URL: or country of choice, e.g.,
CSS: body { background-color: lightgray !important; } or colour of choice

In Firefox Install the Stylus extension

Go to the Google home page, click the toolbar icon and choose Manage > Write a new style. Enter Google as  name for the Style, then enter the same CSS in the Code box

Add following CSS to Code section

body { background-color: lightgray !important; }

Add  URL of the Google home page in the “Applies to” section at the bottom. e.g.

Click Save (top left) to save changes

Mac Show Hidden Files

In Finder to display of Hidden files by type Cmd + Shift + . (dot)

To turn on globally type the following command in Terminal:

defaults write AppleShowAllFiles -bool true

To revert back to hidden append false:

defaults write AppleShowAllFiles -bool false

To make the Finder change effective type:

killall Finder

Windows 10 Shortcuts

Keyboard shortcut Action
Ctrl + A Select all content.
Ctrl + C (or Ctrl + Insert) Copy selected items to clipboard.
Ctrl + X Cut selected items to clipboard.
Ctrl + V (or Shift + Insert) Paste content from clipboard.
Ctrl + Z Undo an action, including undelete files (limited).
Ctrl + Y Redo an action.
Ctrl + Shift + N Create new folder on desktop or File Explorer.
Alt + F4 Close active window. (If no active window present, then shutdown box appears.)
Ctrl + D (Del) Delete selected item to the Recycle Bin.
Shift + Delete Delete selected item permanently skipping Recycle Bin.
F2 Rename selected item.
ESC Close current task.
Alt + Tab Switch between open apps.
PrtScn Take screenshot and stores it in clipboard.
Windows key + I Open Settings app.
Windows key + E Open File Explorer.
Windows key + A Open Action center.
Windows key + D Display and hide the desktop.
Windows key + L Lock device.
Windows key + V Open Clipboard bin.
Windows key + Period (.) or semicolon (;) Open emoji panel.
Windows key + PrtScn Capture full screenshot in the “Screenshots” folder.
Windows key + Shift + S Capture part of the screen with Snip & Sketch.
Windows key + Left arrow key Snap app or window left.
Windows key + Right arrow key Snap app or window right.

Thunderbird 60 gcontactsync Blocked after enabling OAuth2

These notes apply to Kubuntu 18.04 and Thunderbird 60.9.1.

After Google restricted access for LSA’s (Less Secure Apps) it was necessary to change the Gmail account authentication method from “Normal Password” to OAuth2. After this gcontactsync failed – after logging into Google and successfully allowing access to Contacts it was blocked. After extensively trawling the net for a solution one was found. This said the problem was due to Thunderbird being corrupted and the solution offered was a complete rebuild – drastic but it worked!

The rebuild steps are follows:

Save Update History

Save version history, using apt policy,, which might be needed to rollback later, e.g. when TB automatically updates when not desired.

$ sudo apt policy thunderbird
  Installed: 1:60.2.1+build1-0ubuntu0.18.04.2
  Candidate: 1:60.2.1+build1-0ubuntu0.18.04.2
  Version table:
 *** 1:60.2.1+build1-0ubuntu0.18.04.2 500
        500 bionic-updates/main amd64 Packages
        500 bionic-security/main amd64 Packages
     1:52.7.0+build1-0ubuntu1 500
        500 bionic/main amd64 Packages<<

Example rollback

$ sudo apt install thunderbird=1:52.7.0+build1-0ubuntu1

Backup Address Books

In Address Book export each address book in LDIF format to Desktop\Contacts. The exported files names take the same name as the address book, e.g. Personal Address Book = Personal Address Book.ldif

Exit Thunderbird

Ensure all Thunderbird windows are closed

Uninstall Thunderbird

Using Synaptic Package Manager search for “thunderbird” and mark for complete removal and apply

Rename Thunderbird data folders

mv /home/user/.thunderbird /home/user/.thunderbird 60.9.1 backup
mv /home/user/.cache/.thunderbird /home/user/.cache/.thunderbird 60.9.1 backup

This effectively wipes all traces of Thunderbird data.

Install Thunderbird

Using Synaptic Package Manager search for “thunderbird” and Mark for installation and Apply

Launch Thunderbird

Search for Thunderbird and launch. From launchpad right-click Thunderbird and pin it to Desktop icons and Search and Launch.

  1. Add Google account by following the installation wizard
  2. In Config Editor Edit > Preferences > Advanced > Config Editor set the following:
    • Set “app.update.enabled” to false to disable automatic updates!!!
    • Set “general.useragent.compatMode.firefox” set to true to prevent Google Calendar continually asking for passwords and allow gcontactsync to display Google contacts lists to sync with
  3. Restore contacts in Address Book by importing saved address books
  4. Add gcontactsync and setup sync’ing of required address books with respective Google contact lists – should work now
  5. Add Provider for Google Calendar to synchronise calendars
  6. Add other email accounts as required

Notes for installing Thunderbird manually

Download required version from Thunderbird Releases

Install as follows

$ tar -zxvf thunderbird-60.9.1.tar.bz2  #creates thunderbird folder off Downloads
$ sudo su
# mkdir /opt/thunderbird
# cp thunderbird /opt
# exit

Create Thunderbird launcher

$ kate ~/Desktop/Thunderbird.desktop
[Desktop Entry]
Comment[en_GB]=Thunderbird email client
Comment=Thunderbird email client