Think you know tech? If you don't have a handle on every single one of these 15 tech facts, habits, and efficiency tricks, you're not living up to your potential.
1. Don't double-click everything. Windows 101: Double-clicking is how you open items in Windows. It's not how you open links in your Web browser, click buttons in dialog boxes, or do pretty much anything else--and if you reflexively double-click, you might accidentally zip right past something important or submit a form twice. If you don't need this reminder yourself, chances are you know someone who does.
2. Use slashes and backslashes in the appropriate situations. Let's get it straight: / is a slash (or forward slash, if you must), and \ is a backslash. Backslashes are conventionally used for Windows file paths (C:\Program Files\Whatever), while slashes are used for Internet addresses (http://www.pcworld.com/howto.html).
3. Record the exact error message. When your PC crashes, it'll usually try to tell you why it is doing so--albeit with a string of numbers and letters that you won't understand. Write the message down in its entirety (or take a screenshot, if possible) so you can later plug it into Google or give it to your tech support agent. If your PC didn't provide an error message, go to Action Center (in the Control Panel) and see if it shows up under 'View archived messages' or 'View problems to report'.
4. Bring deleted files back from the dead. When you delete a file from your PC or memory card, you're not wiping it off the actual hard drive. Instead, you're simply removing the index information that tells your PC where the file is, at which point the PC is free to treat the part of your disk that contain that file as empty space that it can write something else to. If you've accidentally deleted something, undelete utilities such as Recuva can help you find those files again as long as you haven't already written over that file with something new.