Category: Windows 8

Age of Empires Castle Siege Gets A Big Update

Age of Empires Castle Siege for Windows Phone and Windows 8.1 got a hefty update today, bringing a significant number of stability and performance updates.  Version 1.3 of the game is now available in the Windows Store on your Windows 8.1 PC and Windows Phone Store on your phone.

The update is 170MB in size for Windows Phone so it is a big update and will require you to have your phone connected to WiFi in order to download it.

You can read my review of the game here

Age of Empires Castle Siege for Windows Phone – Free – Download Now

How To Move Your OneDrive Folder to an External Disk

OneDrive has been in the news a lot this past week with the expansion to unlimited storage in the service for those who subscribe to Office 365.  That expansion has already started with many users, including me, seeing totals of 10TB of storage available to them now.  With that added storage space, now the question is how to get as much of your content into OneDrive as possible for safe keeping and for easy access, especially photos and videos.

One challenge users may encounter however is limited disk space on their PC when it comes to moving all of that data.  Let me give you an example.  I run Windows 8.1 Pro on my MacBook Pro (non-Bootcamp, straight up Windows baby) and I have a 256GB SSD hard disk in it.  My photos and videos top out at 286GB which, simple math says, is bigger than 256GB.  That means if I wanted to copy photos over I would have to do one of two things:  Drag-and-drop folders of pictures onto my hard disk, wait for them to sync, then designate them as offline only.  It works but it is clunky.  Or two, move my OneDrive folder to an external disk.  Fortunately this is pretty easy to do in Windows.

Age of Empires Castle Siege Gets Stability Updates

Age of Empires Castle Siege for  Windows and Windows Phone has been updated overnight with a healthy update that brings some functional improvements as well as some stability to the universal Windows Game.  The update, which is free and available now in the Windows Phone Store, brings improved network connectivity for fewer time out issues, fixes some crash issues and a good list of game play improvements.

As I put in my review last week of the game, Age of Empires Castle Siege is a fantastically well done game that stays true to the AoE name.

Age of Empires: Castle Siege – Free – Download Now

How To Remote Desktop To Your PC From Windows Phone

There are times where you want or need to access your Windows PC from afar.  It isn’t often mind you unless you are doing remote support or the like but sometimes you need to find that file you left on your PC desktop instead of uploading to OneDrive.  After all, if you had it in OneDrive, you could easily access it from your Windows Phone.

Microsoft makes a Remote Desktop app for Windows Phone and it works flawlessly for just such a need.  The app is a free download but there is a little bit of configuration you need to do in order for you to be able to access your Windows PC from your Windows Phone.  The good thing though is that once you have it set up you will be good-to-go from that point forward.  I’m going to divide this How To into two parts.  The first part will cover what you need to do on your Windows PC and the second what you need to do on your Windows Phone.

Windows PC

The first thing we need to discuss is the IP address or host name of your Windows PC.  Doing a Remote Desktop to your PC will require you to know one or both of these.  If you are accessing your PC from within the same network (same WiFi network as an example), then all you need to know is your computer’s name.  If your PC is part of a domain then you will likely need the full domain name such as  This will vary depending on how your domain is configured and you may need to contact your administrator for exact instructions on how to do this.

If you are accessing your Windows PC from a different network, the game gets a bit more interesting.  First, you have to make sure that you have access to do a remote desktop session which may or may not be allowed.  Second, if you are accessing your PC at home from afar, you will need to know the public IP address that your Internet Service Provider (ISP) has assigned to you.  It is also likely that that address changes from time-to-time.  As a general rule it is easier to access your PC from within the same network than it is from outside it.

For the rest of this How To I am going to assume you have the network element sorted out.

How To Project Your Windows Phone Screen to Your PC

One of the aspects that I loved about iOS was the ability to quickly and easily share my iPhone or iPad display on a projector via a USB or VGA cable.  As one who regularly is showing mobile apps for the day job, it was handy and efficient.  Since moving to Windows Phone I’ve been looking for away to do the same thing it actually was right under my nose the whole time.  In fact, in some ways, it’s a little bit easier.  In this How To I’m going to show you how to project your Windows Phone screen to your Windows PC via a USB cable.  There is no special cable required – your phone’s charging cable will do the trick – and only requires a free download from Microsoft to do it.

For this How To you will need to have a Windows Phone running v8 or v8.1 and a Windows PC running Windows 7, 8 or 8.1.  You will also need your USB-to-MicroUSB charging cable that comes with your Windows Phone.  Finally, you will need the Project My Screen for Windows Phone app from Microsoft which is a free download.

Age of Empires Castle Siege For Windows Phone Review

Without a doubt one of my favorite games in my twenties was Age of Empires.  I spent hours playing this game and in fact at one point, my entire startup company on Friday’s would have an AoE tournament.  When Microsoft announced that Age of Empire Castle Siege was coming to Windows and Windows Phone earlier this year, I was ecstatic but also had my concerns about it living up to my memories.  I can say now after a few weeks of playing, it lives up to expectations.

The game play in Age of Empires Castle Siege is outstanding with great graphics, smooth scrolling and a truly universal app for both Windows and Windows Phone.  Having played the game for a few weeks now I can say that you won’t be disappointed, especially if you are an old AoE player.

Age of Empires: Castle Siege – Universal App – Free – Download Now

How To Set Quiet Hours in Windows 8

One of the aspects of OS X that I love is the ability to silence notifications.  I travel a fair amount so there are times when I don’t want my laptop chirping away when I’m trying to sleep.  Problem is, I want those emails and other notifications as soon as I wake up.  One of the challenges I thought I would find in moving to Windows 8 would be the loss of this feature.  Thankfully, that’s not the case but setting up Quiet Hours in Windows 8 is a few clicks and menus into the Operating System.

How To Always Save Files to OneDrive for Windows 8

As I have said many times here on the site and on Twitter, I’m a big fan of OneDrive.  It’s a solid, multi-platform cloud storage solution that works brilliantly well Windows Phone, iOS, Mac, Android and of course Windows PC.  It’s also one of the best deals out there if you are an Office 365 user.  For $9.99 per month you get office plus 1TB of storage.  That’ll just about cover anyone I suspect.

One of the great things about OneDrive for Windows 8 is that you can have your PC save your files automatically to the cloud instead of to your local PC.  This not only saves you hard disk space locally (although you can keep a copy local if you wish) but it also is an effective and easy backup to all your files.  By default however this isn’t turned on so this How To will point you how to get there on your PC.

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