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3 Tips to Improve Productivity with (Windows 10) Technology – Part 2

3 Tips to Improve Productivity with (Windows 10) Technology – Part 2

We are continuing our series on how to Improve Productivity with (Windows 10) Technology. In the last blog, we reviewed a few Windows 10 tips such as fine-tuning your startup programs, adjusting your notifications and how to use the Snip & Sketch tool. In this blog, we will go over the Virtual Desktop feature, Windows Timeline, and the Windows Snap feature.

Virtual Desktop: 

Virtual Desktops can help improve productivity because you won’t have to search through your taskbar to find specific documents, files, or apps. This feature allows you to keep separate versions of your desktop. You can have one desktop that contains customer communication items like email, Facebook and Twitter and a separate desktop for apps and documents. With this feature, you can set up as many virtual desktops as you like. 

To use/create Virtual Desktop, click the Task View icon in the taskbar and select the +New desktopoption at the top-left of the screen. If you do not see the Task View icon in the task bar, then right-click on an open section of the taskbar to show the drop-down menu and click the “Show Task View” button. 

All virtual desktops you create will appear at the top of your screen and you can swap between them by using the Task View interface. Below are a few keyboard shortcuts you can use to navigate through your virtual desktops:

  • Windows+Ctrl+DCreate and open a new virtual desktop.
  • Windows+Ctrl+F4: Close the current virtual desktop.
  • Windows+Ctrl+Left/Right: Switch to the virtual desktop on the left or right.
  • Windows+Tab: Open Task View/Virtual desktop interface

Windows Timeline 

This feature reveals your recent history of Office files, Edge browser tabs and Microsoft apps. It will allow you to go back to whatever program you were working with before. Another great thing about Timeline is that it is linked to your Microsoft account so it can be used on different computers you utilize. If you use Chrome for your internet browser, you can get the official Web Activities browser extension by Microsoft. This will allow Windows Timeline and Chrome to be compatible with each other. To use Windows Timeline, follow the steps below:

Open the Task View icon on the Windows 10 toolbar, or press Windows+Tab. You will see your recent activity under the virtual desktop view. To enable/disable Timeline from synchronizing, go to Start > Settings > Privacy > Activity History and choose to either enable or disable. 


Windows 10 has a feature called Snap in which you can divide your monitor into multiple sections, allocating these spaces to separate apps. This is especially helpful if you are using only one monitor. Here is how to use the Windows 10 Snap feature: Click and drag an open window by its title bar to one side of your screen until your cursor touches the edge.  A transparent outline from the cursor will appear, filling half of the screen. When this happens, release the mouse/cursor and the program will enlarge, filling that side of the screen. Other open programs on the same monitor will show on the other half of the screen. If you pick one of the programs, it will expand into that space. This process splits the monitor in half. Also, if you happen to have a large monitor or 4k display, you can use Snap to divide your screen into four quadrants. To do this, just click and drag the open windows of your choice into the four corners your screen.

We hope you find these Windows 10 tips useful. Whether it is saving you 5 minutes a day or contributing to your efficiency we believe these tips can help you improve your productivity.

Call to Action: If you have any questions on how to use these tools and tricks or if you want to see how technology can increase your productivity, contact Cantrell’s IT at (925) 827-1200 (phone or text).

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