The Connection, Inc Blog

The Connection, Inc has been serving the New Jersey area since 1992, providing IT Support such as technical helpdesk support, computer support and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

Tip of the Week: Setting Your Out-of-Office Message in Outlook

Tip of the Week: Setting Your Out-of-Office Message in Outlook

The holidays are fast approaching and that means people are going to miss work for one reason or another. If you can get away from the office for a little bit, you’ll want to set up an out-of-office message to ensure that others know you will get back to them when you get back to the office. Here’s how you can set up an autoresponder for an out-of-office message in Microsoft Outlook.

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Internet Explorer is Dead, Long Live Microsoft Edge?

Internet Explorer is Dead, Long Live Microsoft Edge?

Goodbyes are always painful, but we suspect that this one for Microsoft’s Internet Explorer will be more on the bittersweet side of things. Long a staple in the web browsing world, Internet Explorer has largely been removed from devices running Windows 10 and Windows 11. Let’s take a moment to discuss the approach Microsoft is using to slowly phase Internet Explorer out of the web browsing space.

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Tip of the Week: Maneuvering Around Microsoft Teams

Tip of the Week: Maneuvering Around Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams is a video communication and collaboration platform that your organization can use to great success, but it helps to have a couple of pointers so you can make the most out of the software. Here are five ways you can maximize the value you get out of your Microsoft Teams software.

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Using Your Voice to Type in Microsoft Word

Using Your Voice to Type in Microsoft Word

Typing on your keyboard is something that you do every day, but sometimes you just don’t want to do it. You can give your hands a break and use Microsoft Word’s dictation feature; this lets you use your voice to write in the software. Let’s go over how you might use the feature on a desktop, web browser, or mobile device.

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Microsoft is Sending Mixed Signals About Remote Work

Microsoft is Sending Mixed Signals About Remote Work

Have your opinions of remote work changed at all over the past year and a half, or do you still want your employees to return to the office in full force? Many major companies, despite initially advocating for remote work, are sending mixed signals on the topic, including Microsoft. What can we learn from the experiences of these companies?

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Everything You Need to Know About Windows 8.1 End of Life

Everything You Need to Know About Windows 8.1 End of Life

With Microsoft announcing that the Windows 11 release is right around the corner, most users will be looking to upgrade to hardware that supports it. This is a topic for another day. As we approach the Windows 11 launch, Microsoft is gearing up to retire one of its most controversial (and ultimately innovative) operating systems to date, Windows 8.1. Today, we thought we’d talk a little bit about the mixed bag Windows 8.1 is and how it will be important to move off of the software by January 2023.

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Is Your PC Ready for Windows 11?

Is Your PC Ready for Windows 11?

Microsoft has officially unveiled Windows 11, the latest in its line of PC operating systems, as well as detailed its system requirements. Will your business be upgrading to Windows 11 when the time comes? We think a lot of it will depend on its current IT infrastructure and whether or not you meet the minimum requirements right out the gate. Let’s dive into the details and what you need to know about Windows 11.

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A Major Update to Windows 10 Is On the Horizon

A Major Update to Windows 10 Is On the Horizon

Back in 2015, Microsoft confirmed that Windows 10 would be the last version of Windows, meaning that we should not expect Windows 11 anytime soon. Still, a major update to the Windows 10 operating system has been confirmed to be on its way. What’s coming with this next update to Windows 10, and what does it mean for your business?

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Be Sure to Update Your Microsoft Passwords

Be Sure to Update Your Microsoft Passwords

The new year is upon us and after the debacle that 2020 was, it is extremely welcome. If you are like us, you have a new set of goals that you’ve created for yourself and are probably looking to improve your professional and personal well-being. One way to do that is to ensure that your accounts are secure. Today, we will be going through how to update your password with Microsoft.

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4 Compelling Reasons to Upgrade to Office 365 Business Premium

4 Compelling Reasons to Upgrade to Office 365 Business Premium

Microsoft Office 365 offers many different solutions that allow your employees to be able to do their jobs, keep everything organized, and communicate efficiently. Although, it can be tricky to select a good Office 365 plan for your business. To help streamline operations, the Microsoft Office 365 Business Premium edition offers a versatile selection that can meet any needs your business may encounter.


Some of the benefits of Microsoft Office 365 Business Premium are as follows:

  • Full Installation of Office apps: A subscription to Business Premium allows for each user to have the 2016 editions of all Office applications on up to five desktop or laptop workstations.
  • Mobile Access: Each user can also install the mobile editions of these apps on a total of five tablets or phones, as well as access to the online versions of these apps. This means that your necessary applications are almost always available for use, wherever your employees are.
  • OneDrive for Business: This is an online storage system that allows for sharing of work documents, as well as collaboration between coworkers on them.
  • Company Cooperation: In registering the employees for an account, they each would be granted a business email, calendar, and contact list with access to a corporate social network and unlimited online meetings.

This is just a brief sampling of the benefits that Office 365 Business Premium offers. There are many other features to simplify both your internal and external communications, leading to increased productivity and happier, better served clients. Additionally, a Business Premium subscription plan will ensure your employees access to the most recent versions of the included Office software, along with total control of software updates.

Perhaps the nicest feature of Office 365 (especially the Business Premium plan) is how all-encompassing it is. Even if you exclude the external features and just focus on the aptly-named Office suite applications, there is assistance for almost any general task to be found in an office setting.

Ultimately, the task of selecting the applications used in your workplace comes down on your shoulders. While Office 365 Business Premium is an excellent choice, there may be other alternatives to better suit your needs.

For more information regarding how Office 365 Business Premium can fit into your company’s software library, or to discuss other software solutions, contact The Connection, Inc at (732) 291-5938.

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Windows 10 is Super Popular... Microsoft’s New Edge Browser, Not so Much

Windows 10 is Super Popular... Microsoft’s New Edge Browser, Not so Much

Have you upgraded your business’s workstations to Windows 10 yet? If not, you should ask yourself why you haven’t done so. However, if you have upgraded, you’re one of the 25.3 percent of people using Windows 10. Windows 10 seems to be a great hit among end-users, but Microsoft’s new browser, Edge, isn’t so fortunate.


Using data collected by Net Applications, StatCounter Global Stats, and the United States Government’s Digital Analytics Program, ZDNet put together some OS usage statistics for all Windows PCs. Since November 2015, Windows 10’s usage has gone from 12.8 percent to 25.3 percent (nearly doubling in popularity). Other significant trends include the usage of Windows XP/Vista, which has significantly decreased, as well as Windows 7 and 8.x decreasing slightly in usage.

You would think that all of this growth for Windows 10 would mean significant growth for Microsoft Edge, too. Unfortunately, even the most generous of statistics only provide Edge with a usage of 5 percent, while the lower end places it at around 2.5 percent.

We want to take this opportunity to remind you that your business shouldn’t be updating your technology at the last minute, especially if your current operating system is set to expire shortly. If you’re currently using an unsupported operating system, you need to make the switch to a better, more recent software as soon as possible, as you could be putting not just your own workstation at risk, but your entire infrastructure as well. You should never put your business’s critical assets in harm’s way if you can avoid it.

If your business hasn’t considered upgrading to Windows 10 yet, why is this the case? Is it due to legacy applications that your business needs to keep operations moving forward, or because your current computer is ready to bite the dust? Either way, you need to take a full assessment of your network and prepare an audit for what needs to be done before you can move to Windows 10. You need to know if Windows 10 will make a significant change in the way that your business functions.

It’s also worth mentioning that, if your business wants to take advantage of Windows 10, you should try to use the free upgrade from Microsoft while you still can. The offer lasts until July 29th, 2016, so there’s no better time than now to upgrade.

The Connection, Inc understands the importance of making an educated decision about your IT infrastructure. We can help you make the upgrade to Windows 10 with the least amount of trouble possible. By outsourcing the management and maintenance of your infrastructure to The Connection, Inc, we can consult you on how best to make major changes to your business’s technology, as well as how to make your business’s technology dreams become a reality. To learn more, give us a call at (732) 291-5938.

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Free Windows 10 Upgrade Coming to an End on July 29th

Free Windows 10 Upgrade Coming to an End on July 29th

Over the past year, Microsoft’s latest operating system, Windows 10, has gained a massive user base. With over 300 million devices worldwide running it, it’s safe to say that Windows 10 has, thus far, been a commercial success. However, the biggest reason for upgrading to Windows 10 (the free upgrade) will soon expire. So, are you going to take advantage of this, or wait until later?

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Microsoft Makes Windows 10 Enterprise Affordable for SMBs By Charging Monthly

Microsoft Makes Windows 10 Enterprise Affordable for SMBs By Charging Monthly

Businesses used to paying up front for Windows may be surprised to learn that the newest offering by Microsoft, Windows 10 Enterprise edition, will have a monthly charge. For some organizations, this move may be enough for them to rethink how they buy and manage their software.

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Alert: Microsoft Fixes 27 Vulnerabilities in Latest Round of Patches

Alert: Microsoft Fixes 27 Vulnerabilities in Latest Round of Patches

In the latest round of security patches released by Microsoft, 27 vulnerabilities were fixed. Affected software includes major titles like Windows, Microsoft Office, Internet Explorer, and the new Edge browser. It’s imperative that you apply these security patches as soon as you can, or else your system will be exposed to some serious threats.

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Cortana Gets a Little Too Clingy After Latest Update

Cortana Gets a Little Too Clingy After Latest Update

The idea of speaking to your device and having it perform tasks is hardly a new one. Siri and Google Now have long dominated this industry. Microsoft released Cortana in an attempt to enter the voice assistant race, but with Windows 10’s anniversary update, more harm than good could come from using Cortana.

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4 Reasons Why You Should Give Office 365 a Try

4 Reasons Why You Should Give Office 365 a Try

It can be stressful to select the right technology for your business. To take some of this pressure off of your shoulders, we’d like to make a suggestion--look into Microsoft Office 365. It could be just the solution you need to make several of your responsibilities easier.

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Tip of the Week: Did You Know About These Windows Features?

Tip of the Week: Did You Know About These Windows Features?

Does your business use Windows 10? If so, there are all sorts of hidden tips and tricks that can help you gain even more value from your workstations that are running Windows 10. Here are a few of these secrets and how they can help your staff save time.

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Tip of the Week: 3 More Useful Microsoft Word Features

Tip of the Week: 3 More Useful Microsoft Word Features

Microsoft Word has long since established itself as the primary word processing software in the business world, but even some power users don’t necessarily know about all of the hidden features that exist in it. Here are three of the best Word capabilities that you’ll be sure to use next time you’re in a pinch.

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3 SharePoint Considerations Businesses Should Have

3 SharePoint Considerations Businesses Should Have

Businesses are always looking for a way to make their projects more successful. While many organizations have found success by integrating Microsoft SharePoint project collaboration software, some have found it to be a giant headache to manage, or even completely unnecessary. No matter where your business falls on this spectrum, there are some best practices in utilizing SharePoint to get the most out of the platform. Here are three considerations your team should make when you settle on SharePoint for project collaboration.


For those of you who are unfamiliar with SharePoint, it is Microsoft’s browser-based collaboration and document management platform. It can be hosted both on-premise and in the cloud and is currently offered with the enterprise-level Microsoft Office 365 productivity suite. It provides project teams a central hub in which to share and collaborate on documents; and, because it has Office 365 integration, can be set up to deploy Office 2016 applications for easy document access.

Detail Your View of Success
In any project, there is a definite goal. Since SharePoint deployments are designed to help organizations run large projects, it can sometimes seem as if you are constantly altering the measure of success. The more people who are working on a project, the more places inefficiency can rear its head. Since SharePoint’s main benefit is building efficiency, defining the measure of success when you begin a project and sticking to it can go a long way towards establishing the actual value the project has to your company once completed.

Does Your Project Team Really Need SharePoint?
Many organizations that roll out a SharePoint platform don’t consider what the platform will be used for beforehand. Since the content management aspect is at the core of what SharePoint is all about, if you have a project that has limited content, is the SharePoint deployment necessary? Knowing what your team needs before having your IT provider integrate SharePoint can go a long way toward determining the success your SharePoint deployment will have, if any.

SharePoint Training Is Important
SharePoint is extraordinarily useful as a central hub to a project. Since it can store content, allow for the deployment of applications, and provide custom access to each, it can give each team member exactly what they need to complete their part of the project. The problem begins when new users are asked to begin using SharePoint without any training whatsoever. As with any other software, the more end-users know about the functionality of the software they are using, the more efficient and productive they can be. Ensuring that your team is trained on how to at least navigate around your SharePoint platform can go a long way toward keeping a project on-budget and a team member on-task.

SharePoint can be beneficial for most organizations that need a dedicated collaboration solution, but if it isn't leveraged correctly, it can be a major time sink. To learn more about Microsoft SharePoint, contact The Connection, Inc today at (732) 291-5938.

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Understanding the Importance of .Net Framework

Understanding the Importance of .Net Framework

If you’re a habitual user of the Microsoft Windows operating system, there’s a relatively good chance that you’ve been prompted to install something called “.NET framework.” Pronounced “dot-net,” this framework is most commonly used for Windows. In this blog, we’ll go over what a software framework is and is for, as well as examine what makes .NET stand out.

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The Connection, Inc
51 Village CT
Hazlet, New Jersey 07730