How to Use Android Guest Mode to Share Device without Compromising Privacy

If you’re routinely sharing your Android device with other members of your household, you may not want them to view your text messages or private photos when using your device. You can always lock down the applications that hold your private data, but this method may not always be foolproof. The good news is that there’s a better way to ensure the borrower does not get full access to your personal files.

Introduced as far back as Android 5.0, Guest Mode allows users to share their device without compromising on privacy. When you switch to Android’s Guest Mode, all your data is tucked away safely in your user account and made unavailable to the other party.

It would be as if you performed a factory reset on your device – you get a blank state. Not to worry, though, as you can easily switch back to your user account (admin) and get your data and settings back.

How to Enable Guest Mode on Your Device

If you never used Guest Mode on your device before, you will have to turn the feature on. You can do this by digging into your handset’s settings.

1. Open Settings on your phone.

2. Scroll down toward the bottom until you find System and tap on this option.

How To Use Guest Mode Settings System

3. Select “Multiple Users.” Depending on your phone model, you may have to tap on Advanced first to be able to see the option.

How To Use Guest Mode Settings Multiple Users

4. Toggle on the “Multiple Users” on.

How To Use Guest Mode Settings Enable Multiple Users

5. That’s it.

How to Switch to Guest Mode on Android

Once you’ve enabled Guest Mode on your handset, you can go ahead and switch to it using just a few taps.

1. Perform a two-finger swipe on your display to bring up the Quick Settings panel, then swipe down again to expand it.

2. Tap the blue User icon in the upper-right corner.

How To Use Guest Mode Quick Settings Get To Guest Mode

3. Next, tap Guest. The phone will automatically switch to Guest Mode.

How To Use Guest Mode Quick Settings Switch To Guest Mode

4. Now you can hand the device to whomever needs to use it.

How To Use Guest Mode New Mode View

None of your installed applications will be available to your Guest except the ones that came pre-installed with the device. All settings will be reset to the defaults as if the device was newly purchased, so there’s no danger that the person now using the phone will be snooping around your photos, texts or browser history.

How To Use Guest Mode Pixel Apps Guest Mode

To switch back to your user account, open the Quick Settings panel again and tap on the admin user account, or you can simply press on the “Remove Guest” option. This will delete all the guest session data and return you back to your own user account, although you’ll need to unlock the device first.

How To Use Guest Mode Go Back To Admin Mode

Once someone exits Guest mode and then returns, they’ll be asked whether they would like to continue the session or start a new one. The latter option allows Guests to pick up where they left off, so it’s great for returning users. If a Guest wishes to retain their Settings and other changes for future use, the admin can create a separate profile for them by tapping on “Add user.”

Configuring Guest Mode

There’s only one option you can change regarding how Guest mode works on your phone. Go once again to “Settings -> System -> Multiple Users -> Guest.” From there, you can enable the “Turn on phone calls” option to allow calls to go through, even when someone else is using your device.

How To Use Guest Mode Settings Guest Turn On Phone Calls

From the same menu, you can remove the Guest from your phone or switch to Guest mode from here, if you prefer.


Tmux vs. Screen: Which Is the Best Terminal Multiplexer?

When you work with terminals in Linux often, you’re bound to run into some struggles when you want to multitask. Multiple windows or tabs are fine, but when you’re logged into a remote server or other system, you don’t always have access to tabs or multiple terminal windows. That’s where the stalwart members of the Linux system administration world tmux and screen come in. But, as with all things in the open source community, the choice here isn’t clear as to which one of these commands is better for your usage. Today, we walk you through tmux vs screen to decide which is the best terminal multiplexer.

Features of Terminal Multiplexers

Because both tmux and screen are terminal multiplexers, there are a few main features I want to talk about because that makes the differences between them a little more apparent. You’ll generally press a particular key combination that doesn’t register anywhere else in the system to use different features of your multiplexer.

Detaching and Reattaching

You can start a session in a Terminal Multiplexer, do some work, and detach it to get it off your screen. This will also keep that session alive if you log off, which keeps sensitive data from being lost. You can then reattach it once you’re ready and need to start working there again.

Split screen

You can also split your terminal session into tiles, creating multiple visible terminal sessions at once. This is great if you’re keeping track of a few different aspects of system resource usage, like power, RAM, CPU, and disk IO, and you want to use different monitors to keep track of those different things. Or, you can keep an eye on a system monitor while you compile or compress a large project, which makes it easy to keep track of load if something goes haywire.

Session Management

There are a few ways that Terminal Multiplexers help you keep track of your sessions. One is that when you detach multiple sessions, you can see all of them at a glance. This is nice if you start multiple sessions, then aren’t sure which one you should go back to. Plus, you can also name or label the sessions, which makes it simple to keep track of your workspaces. They start to become a little like virtual desktops on a typical desktop operating system.

Features of tmux

One of the primary features that I really like about tmux is that you can control sessions from your normal shell prompt without having to enter the session you’ve created. A great example is killing sessions, which can be done via the tmux kill-session command. If you know for a fact that you’re done with a particular tmux session, you can just kill it from your shell prompt.

Tmux Vs Screen Tmux Initial View 1
Tmux Vs Screen Tmux Detach 1
Tmux Vs Screen Tmux Ls 1
Tmux Vs Screen Tmux Attach 1
Tmux Vs Screen Tmux Split Vertical 1
Tmux Vs Screen Tmux Split Vertical Resize Left 1
Tmux Vs Screen Tmux Split Vertical Resize Right 1
Tmux Vs Screen Tmux Split Horizontal 1

There’s also a nice status bar in the bottom of the screen rather than taking over the terminal prompt at the top of the window. It’s a little easier to visualize a tmux workflow than it is with screen. Plus, the sessions rename themselves automatically based on the command you’re running, which is useful if you forget to name them.

Features of screen

There is one main feature of screen that helps it stand out from tmux: session sharing with other users, which can be great on multi-user systems that have multiple admins working on it at once for troubleshooting purposes.

Tmux Vs Screen Screen 1
Tmux Vs Screen Screen Detach 1
Tmux Vs Screen Screen Ls 1
Tmux Vs Screen Screen Reattach 1
Tmux Vs Screen Screen Named Session 1
Tmux Vs Screen Screen Splitscreen 1

Another plus is that if you’re using a Mac, you don’t have to mess around with homebrew to get screen installed – it’s built right into the terminal.

screen vs. tmux in a nutshell

If I had to suggest one, I’d suggest tmux. There are a few things that make tmux better. A great example is how you can switch attach with kill-session and end a session without having to go back in, end the command, then type exit. Plus, the status bar is easier to read, and the commands are a little more human-readable.

For a macOS user, screen may be more convenient, as there’s no need for homebrew to get going.


Brave First Browser to Include IPFS Protocol

The more we spend our lives hooked up to the Internet in one way or another, the more we are demanding that the experience be more secure. The Brave browser is handling it in an entirely different way — while still promising privacy, it’s also introducing IPFS, a way for Web content to be more centralized than the traditional HTTP.

Brave and IPFS

Brave released an update to its browser that includes the IPFS (InterPlanetary File System) protocol. The content on IPFS is loaded from a decentralized network of distributed nodes instead of a more central server such as HTTP (HyperText Transfer Protocol).

“We’re thrilled to be the first browser to offer a native IPFS integration with today’s Brave desktop browser release,” said Brave CTO and co-founder Brian Bondy. “Integrating the IPFS open-source network is a key milestone in making the Web more transparent, decentralized, and resilient.”

There are many advantages of IPFS over HTTP. Along with being faster and presenting a reduced cost to publishers, there is also less chance for government censorship.

Brave Browser Ipfs Logos

“Today, Web users across the world are unable to access restricted content, including, for example, parts of Wikipedia in Thailand, over 100,000 blocked websites in Turkey, and critical access to COVID-19 information in China,” said IPFS project lead Molly Mackinlay.

“Now anyone with an Internet connection can access the critical information through IPFS on the Brave browser.”

IPFS founder Juan Benet admitted that he’s concerned about the centralization of the Internet. He believes this could lead it to “disappear at any moment, bringing down all the data with them – or at least breaking all the links.”

“Instead,” added Benet, “Were pushing for a fully distributed Web, where applications don’t live at centralized servers but operate all over the network from users’ computers … a Web where content can move through any untrusted middlemen without giving up control of the data or putting it at risk.”

The Future with IPFS

By enabling IPFS in its browser, Brave is not only allowing users to feel more secure with an alternative Web experience, as it always has — now it’s also leaving users more freedom in their browsing. Control would lie with users in what they wanted to access instead of a more centralized system.

Brave Browser Ipfs Https

With questions abounding more and more of what content is allowed and from whom we should be allowed to access it, IPFS would enable users to have access to the content they want more directly.

But even if you get the updated Brave browser with the built-in IPFS, it won’t lead to a dramatic change in experience just yet. You will need to wait for content to be hosted vis that platform rather than HTTP. There is some content already on IPFS, but not to the extent to give you enough options to leave HTTP behind.

News iOS

Apple Blocks Sideloading iOS Apps on M1 Macs

Apple has finally implemented a server-side block to prevent M1 MacBook and Mac Mini users from sideloading iOS and iPad apps not available on the App Store.

The Cupertino giant unveiled MacBooks powered by its own Apple M1 silicon earlier last year. The launch of M1-powered Macs was followed by tools that enabled users to install unsupported iOS apps on their PC. These apps weren’t officially made available on the App Store by the developers yet. You could use the iMazing tool to get the .IPA file for the app you want to install on your M1 Macbook.

This means you could use the aforesaid tool to install iOS apps like Hulu, Instagram, Netflix, and others that are yet to make their way to the App Store on Macs. With the server-side switch, it is no longer possible to install unsupported iOS apps on your M1 Mac. If you already have any such apps installed, they remain unaffected by this change.

Now, when you try to install a .IPA file on your M1 Mac, it will show an error message that reads (via 9to5Mac): “This application cannot be installed because the developer did not intend for it to run on this platform.”

apple blocks ios app sideload
Image Courtesy: 9to5Mac

This server-side change is now live on macOS Big Sur 11.1 and the developer, as well as public, betas of macOS Big Sur 11.2. The publication further explains how Apple made to block apps from being sideloaded on M1 Macs. The company made changes to the API that handles DRM (Digital Rights Management) protections on the App Store. It seems like a possible workaround might not be available in the near future.

So, if you want to install an iOS or iPad app on your M1 Mac, the developers will have to make the same available on the App Store. It now falls upon the developers whether they want to optimize and make their app available to a wider audience.


CD Projekt Unveils Cyberpunk 2077 Roadmap 2021 And Apologizes For Cyberpunk 2077 Bugs

A month after launch, CD Projekt Red has posted an extensive video to address the players and talks about DLC, patches, and upcoming updates for the much-discussed action role-playing game Cyberpunk 2077.

In the video, the Polish development studio apologizes for the current state of Cyberpunk 2077 on consoles.

The video entitled “Our Commitment to Quality” has been presented by the co-founder of the developer studio, Marcin Iwiński himself, and expressly apologizes for the state of the console version of Cyberpunk 2077.

He acknowledges that the console version of Cyberpunk 2077 did not meet the established quality standards. More importantly, he said the responsibility for the matter rests squarely with the studio’s management, not the developers.

I and the entire leadership team deeply regret this, and in this video, I am the one who acknowledges it publicly. Do not blame any of our teams for what happened. It is a talented group that works hard,” he said.

A new roadmap also shows the further development steps that CD Projekt has envisaged for the role-playing action game. While the promised and free next-gen update for the game consoles will not appear until the end of the second half of 2021, Patch 1.1 and Patch 1.2 are to be released soon.

The first update (patch 1.1) is to be rolled out within the next ten days, an even larger update (patch 1.2) is to follow “a few weeks “later. During a phase of further improvements and updates, the first free DLC is also planned, says Marcin Iwiński.

Iwiński says CD Projekt is also currently working with Sony to bring the game back to the PlayStation Store as soon as possible.


How to Use Google Authenticator on a Windows PC

Google Authenticator can be useful, but it’s annoying that Google hasn’t made an official app for the desktop yet. However, you can use Google Authenticator on your Windows PC via other means. Let’s explore the ways you can use Google Authenticator on your PC.

Exporting Google’s 2FA to Your PC

To do this, you’re going to need the “secret code” for Google Authenticator. This is the seed from which the code generators can make codes that work with Google.

To get the secret code, head to the Google Account security page. Go to the “Signing in to Google” section and click “2-Step Verification.”

Google Authenticator Code 2 Step

If Google knows you have a phone connected to your account, it will take you through the steps to set up a basic phone notification service.

After you have completed the steps, you’ll have the chance to set up the Authenticator app. While we’re not going to download the actual app, we do need to pretend we are getting the secret key. Click “Set up.”

Google Authenticator Code Setup

Go through the prompts until it asks you to scan a QR code. Under the code, click “Can’t scan it?”

Google Authenticator Code Scan

On the next page, look for the secret key and copy it. This is what you’ll enter into third-party apps when they ask for a key. However, be sure to keep it a secret. If someone else gets this information, they can use it to get into your account!

Now that we have the code, let’s see where we can put it.

1. WinAuth

If you’re worried about a third-party app stealing or leaking your code, try WinAuth. Its major draw is that it’s an open-source app that you download onto your PC. As such, there’s no obfuscated code or cloud storage that can leak your key.

Setting up with WinAuth is very easy. Once WinAuth is running, add a new Google account.

Google Authenticator Winauth Category

Enter your private key, then click the “Verify Authenticator” button. Continue with your Google account setup and enter the code that WinAuth gives you.

Google Authenticator Winauth Enter

Copy the generated one-time password and paste it to your Google security settings page and click on the button “Verify and Save” to verify the generated code.

Copy the generated one-time password.

If everything is done correctly, Google will show you a confirmation window letting you know. Just click on the “OK” button to save the changes in your Google account.

Google will show you a confirmation.

Back to the WinAuth window: now that you’ve confirmed the generated code, click on the OK button to save the changes in the WinAuth application.

As soon as you click on the “OK” button, WinAuth will open the Protection window that allows you to set a password to encrypt the files saved by WinAuth. This ensures any unauthorized access will be blocked. Simply enter the password twice and click on the “OK” button to save the changes. Alternatively, you can also set WinAuth to encrypt files so that it can only be used on the current computer, but using the password protection is much more viable.

Set a password to encrypt the files saved.

Now you can use the Google Authenticator on your PC using WinAuth.

2. Authy

If you want to sync your mobile and PC codes, try Authy. You can use it as a standalone on your PC, but it does ask you for your phone details during signup. If you have Authy on your phone, you can quickly sync your details between the two devices.

On the PC version of Authy, click the plus icon at the top right.

Google Authenticator Authy Add

Paste the secret key in the box.

Google Authenticator Authy Code

You can name and assign a color to the account. Once you’ve set it up, you’ll have a working Google code.

3. GAuth Authenticator

If you want something in your browser, you can try the GAuth Authenticator. You can install it as a Chrome extension or a web app.

Adding your authenticator to GAuth is easy. First, click on the pencil on the top right, then click Add.

Google Authenticator Gauth Add

Enter the name of the authentication code (in this case, Google) and the secret key.

Google Authenticator Gauth Details

Once done, you’ll have a functioning authenticator.

Now that you know how to use Google Authenticator on your Windows PC.


WhatsApp Data Leaked: Mobile Numbers of Web Users Found on Google Search

Whatsapp is already facing issues after it brought data and Privacy policy update news. However, this time the Whatsapp Web app users’ mobile numbers are leaked on Google Search. Usually, Whatsapp is a mobile app, but millions of people use it on desktop as well for their professional use.

Many Whatsapp Web Users Mobile Numbers are on Google Search

Mobile numbers of whatsapp web users leaked

Today, cybersecurity researcher Rajshekhar Rajaharia has shared few screenshots where personal mobile numbers of Whatsapp Web users are found on Google Search.

The researcher has shared the picture with IANS and told,

“The leak is happening via WhatsApp on Web. If someone is using WhatsApp on laptop or on an office PC, the mobile numbers are being indexed on Google Search. These are mobile numbers of individual users not business numbers”.

Earlier this week, private group chat links were available on Google Search, to which WhatsApp said, it has asked to google not to list such chats on Google search. And has also warned the users not to share links that can be accessible publicly on websites.

The links which were indexed by Google were of a private chat group, which means anyone can join any private chat group by just searching it. However, now the Whatsapp group chat links are removed. And now Google has indexed Mobile numbers of Whatsapp Web users.

The researcher Rajshekhar said,

“Despite WhatsApp advising users and telling Google to remove the earlier exposed group chat links, the mobile numbers via WhatsApp Web application are now being indexed on Google Search”.

The spokesperson of the company said,

“We have given our feedback to Google to not index these chats. Links that users wish to share privately with people they know and trust should not be posted on a publicly accessible website”.

Issues with Whatsapp came up last year in February when Google had results around 470,000 for a search of “”. This issue was found by Jane Wong who is an app reverse-engineer.

However, as per the reports, the personal mobile numbers of Whatsapp Web users is done by Whatsapp or Google, which is still not known.

If you know, Whatsapp is changing its privacy policy and the users will have to agree and accept it, if not they might lose their account.


10 Facts About Wikipedia That You Didn’t Know

Wikipedia, the free online encyclopedia, was launched 20 years ago. Currently, Wikipedia is the world’s second most visited website with over 1.7 billion people visiting the site per month. It has more than 55 million articles in 313 different languages.

However, from time-to-time, this site receives criticism about not covering all subjects, regions or issues with equal depth. Wikipedia is also blamed for being Western and biased. No wonder it has a Wikipedia alternatives article of its own. Did you know about it? If not, then read along to learn more rare facts about Wikipedia.

Here are 10 rare facts about Wikipedia:

1. Wikipedia has a birthday committee

The first fact about Wikipedia is that a birthday committee exists in Wikipedia to wish birthdays to Wikipedians who list their birthdays on this site. There are a lot of banners that can be used to wish a Wikipedian a happy birthday, including one in the dreaded Comic Sans.

2. Wikipedia stats

According to Wikipedia, the website has more than 55 million articles in 313 different languages. Out of which, around 6.2 million articles are in English. English, Cebuano, Swedish, German, French, and Dutch have the most number of articles.

There are more than 280,000 editors and if we take into account the number of edits then till date there have been over two billion edits on Wikipedia, with numbers growing each day.

3. 274301 Wikipedia 

Did you know? There is a Vestian asteroid named after Wikipedia called, “274301 Wikipedia” which is orbiting  in the inner region of the asteroid belt.

It was discovered by astronomers back in August 2008 and measures 1 kilometer (0.6 miles) in diameter.

4. Wikipedia has a policy titled “No Angry Mastodons”

Wikipedia has long been known for offering and name policies under crazy and insane names. There’s “No climbing the Reichstag dressed as Spiderman”, “Jimbo’s prayer” and “No curses”, which requests that users don’t target the Wikipedia community with any malevolent hex, seal, spell, or enchantment. The most famous one in recent times has been “No Angry Mastodons”, which deals with posting under the influence of anger, and offers recommendations on how to avoid other people stomping.

5. Google gives hit to Wikipedia

Even though Wikipedia has piles of articles and readership in millions, around half of Wiki’s total traffic comes from Google’s search engine.

6. No-Follow links

Once upon a time, people used Wikipedia to get traffic to their websites by including their websites link into a Wikipedia article. So, Wikipedia made all the links ‘No follow’ links after the change in the Google search engine policy.

7. US Conservatives started Conservapedia to counter Wikipedia Liberal Views

Conservatives see Wikipedia as a source which rejects the perception of creation out of one natural power. So, if you support the scientific consensus on climate change, or you want to contradict that the Universe was created by a supernatural being, you might find US conservatives disliking you. So to adjust the level of preferences and thoughts, they have started something called Conservapedia.

Some of Conservapedia’s more notable pages include the entry on the link between atheism and obesity, listing a number of prominent overweight atheists including Christopher Hitchins and Kim Jong-il, the entry on “Hollywood values” which are “characterized by decadence, narcissism, rampant drug use, extramarital sex leading to the spread of sexually-transmitted disease, abortion, lawlessness, promotion of the homosexual agenda and death” — and best of all the list of “examples of bias in Wikipedia”, which encourages readers to email Jimmy Wales and tell him to sort it out.

8. What Will Be the Last Wikipedia Entry

There’s an ongoing debate on what will be the last entry on Wikipedia. The idea is that —

1) Either Wikipedia will fold or shut down.
2) The entire sum of human knowledge will be complete (unlikely, as new discoveries are always being made, new celebrities arise, etc).
3) Society and the Internet will collapse, and Wikipedia along with it (in which case, we’ll have bigger problems).
4) The editing process will become automated and the robot overlords will remove/exterminate human editors as Wikipedia becomes self-aware… in which case, we’ll have even bigger problems.

9. Wikipedia Blocks Edits From Certain Sources

Wikipedia has blocked edits on occasion coming from .gov IP addresses. These are largely political interests trying to alter their own entries, and politicians have been caught attempting to whitewash their own political and personal records on Wikipedia. Another similar high-profile source that Wikipedia has blocked entirely are edits coming from known IP addresses owned by the Church of Scientology, again, mostly for attempting to rewrite its own history.

10. Wikipedia’s official theme song is “Hotel Wikipedia”

A version of the Eagles’ 1976 hit Hotel California has been co-opted as the official theme song for Wikipedia. The site claims it was released as a single in the spring of 2004, but appropriately there’s no citation for that reference. Be aware of editing it, though. On the W.O.R. page the listing states: “If you edit it, you are proposing an official change! Much bureaucracy will be involved!”


5 of the Best Linux Distros for Windows Users in 2021

If you’re new to Linux or are switching to Linux from Windows, you’ll want an OS that is GUI-focused like Windows. There are many different distributions of Linux, and some aim to replicate the look and feel of Windows. This helps during the transition from Windows, since you don’t have to fight with an unfamiliar interface. With Linux boasting improved hardware support, long term stability, and a more comprehensive range of software applications, there is no better time to try it!

In this roundup, we introduce you to the best Linux distributions for Windows users looking to switch to Linux.

1. Kubuntu

We have to admit that we like Ubuntu but understand that its default Gnome desktop might look too strange if you’re switching from Windows. Unlike other Linux variants, Ubuntu prioritizes simplicity, and this approach isn’t restricted to its desktop. It percolates through its every bit.

Best Distos For Windows Users Kubuntu

Kubuntu is the same OS as Ubuntu but with a KDE Desktop Environment. It offers a more classic experience, much closer to what you know from Windows. Combine this familiar desktop with one of the most user-friendly OS on the planet, and Kubuntu wins the cake.

2. Linux Mint

Linux Mint is based on Ubuntu but differs in that its developers haven’t included – and have even undone – some of Canonical’s choices. You can choose between three official flavors, each built around a different Desktop Environment: Cinnamon, MATE, and XFCE.

Best Distos For Windows Users Mint

Cinnamon is the primary flavor and offers a modern desktop that’s built on classic paradigms. Although it takes advantage of the GPU and presents effects (like transparency and shadows), it also doesn’t detour from what most desktop users would expect. It’s familiar, but looks slick, and is also very user friendly.

MATE offers a more classic desktop experience compared to Cinnamon. Both desktop environments provide similar functionality and come with equivalent software choices. The difference between them is primarily in their structure and design. It’s easier to explain it if we use Windows, again, for reference. MATE feels like a modern and polished Windows XP desktop, straight to the point. Cinnamon is closer to the Windows Vista experience, with a higher priority on visuals.

3. Robolinux

Robolinux is an interesting distro that is gunning for Windows users in a big way. Most folks are aware that Linux users can run Windows programs in WINE. If you’re migrating to Linux from Windows and want to bring all of your programs, files, and settings with you, Robolinux can help.

Best Distos For Windows Users Robolinux

Robolinux includes Stealth VM, a virtual machine that it claims can run any Windows program without any lag. In addition, Robolinux has a tool that allows you to clone your entire Windows C drive. This means you can migrate all your preexisting programs and data. While Robolinux is free, the developer is asking for donations for the cloning tool.

4. Solus

Solus is another excellent Linux distro that is best for beginners and Windows users alike. It features a beautiful user interface that is intuitive for beginners and children. It also carries most of the Windows DNA, making it a perfect replacement for Windows. For example, it has a Software Center that allows you to manage all your installed apps and is more or less like the Windows control panel.

Best Distos For Windows Users Solus

It also ships with a host of preinstalled apps, including Mozilla Firefox; Files, which resembles Files Explorer in Windows 10 for managing documents; and GNOME MPV for controlling media playback. Solus is also highly customizable, with every tweak designed to deliver a cohesive computing experience.

5. Zorin OS

If you love Windows 7, Zorin OS will replicate that Windows experience for you. It not only features a desktop interface that looks and feels familiar, but it’s also beautiful and easy to use. However, it doesn’t limit you to that interface. If you would love something different but with the same feel, Zorin OS offers several options to choose from.

Best Distos For Windows Users Zorinos

You can choose a GNOME 3 layout or go for a Windows XP-like interface if you want to keep it closer to Windows. Zorin OS has been built from scratch to provide a seamless migration experience for Windows users. In fact, it’s the only distro on our list that includes Wine. This compatibility layer allows users to install Windows apps on Linux.


How to See Who’s Tracking You Online (and Stop It)

Have you ever searched for a product, only to be confronted with an advert for that exact same product on a completely unrelated website? This is an example of how companies are tracking you online and targeted advertising in action.

Targeted ads are where advertising networks track your online movements. These networks can then use this information to target you with very specific, personalized ads. 

Are the Internet’s targeted ads starting to feel slightly too targeted? There are ways to stop these networks from spying on your every move! Here we show you how to block cross-site tracking across Safari, Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Opera. 

What is cross-site tracking?

Cross-site tracking is organizations tracking your movements across multiple websites. These networks can then use this data to build a user profile, which typically includes all the products you’ve recently viewed online. This is why you can view a product on one website, then encounter an advert for that exact same product on a completely unrelated website.

If you’re starting to feel watched, there are steps you can take to reduce cross-site tracking. Depending on your choice of web browser and the websites you visit, these techniques may not successfully block every single advertising network. However, they will limit the amount of information these advertising networks have access to, which can only have a positive impact on your online privacy.

See exactly who’s tracking you with Safari’s Privacy Report

Apple’s Safari browser gives you the option to block cross-site tracking. It also has a Privacy Report that displays all the sites and agencies that are gathering information about you.

Before blocking these trackers, you may want to review exactly which sites are tracking you online and gathering information about you. Armed with this information, you may decide that cross-site tracking isn’t a huge issue for your particular browsing habits, or you may decide to avoid certain websites entirely.

To access Safari’s Privacy Report: 

1. Launch the Safari web browser.

2. In the toolbar, select “Safari -> Privacy Report.”

3. Select the “Websites” tab. This will display information about all the websites that are profiling you. 

4. Select the “Trackers” tab. This displays a list of all the trackers that are gathering information about you. This includes the companies that created these trackers and the number of times Safari detected these trackers during your browsing sessions.

You can also check how intrusive a particular website is by navigating to the website in question and then selecting the shield icon that appears alongside Safari’s address bar. You can then select “Trackers on This Web Page,” and Safari will display a list of all the trackers that are active on this particular webpage.

Once you’ve seen all the websites and agencies who are tracking you, if you want to block these trackers:

1. In the Safari toolbar, select “Safari -> Preferences … ”

2. Select the “Privacy” tab. 

You can prevent cross-site tracking, using Safari's privacy settings.

3. Select the following checkbox: “Prevent Cross-Site Tracking.”

Safari will now prevent these trackers from following you across the World Wide Web. 

Block trackers with Chrome’s Ghostery extension

As you’re browsing the web, Chrome can send a request for websites not to collect or track your browsing data. 

It’s important to note that this is a request, so there’s no guarantee that every website will honor the request. Frustratingly, Chrome doesn’t provide information about the websites that are tracking you online. However, we still recommend enabling this feature, as it can help minimize the number of websites that are tracking your online movements: 

1. In Chrome’s upper-right corner, select the three-dot menu icon, then “Settings.”

2. In the menu on the left, select “Privacy and security.”

Google's Chrome can send websites a Do Not Track request.

3. Click “Cookies and other site data.”

4. Find the “Do not track” slider and push it into the “On” position. 

Now Chrome will send a “Do Not Track” request to every website you visit. Since this is only a request, you may want to take additional steps to protect your online privacy.

Ghostery is a Chrome extension that enables you to view and block online trackers. After installing Ghostery, you can view all the trackers that are active on a particular website:

1. Head to the site in question.

2.  Click the “Extensions” icon in the Chrome toolbar. 

You can block online trackers using the Ghostery extension for Google Chrome.

3. Select “Ghostery” to see a list of all the trackers this extension has detected. 

The Ghostery Chrome extension reveals detailed information about all the trackers that are active on the current site.

4. You can block all of these trackers by selecting the “Detailed” tab and then clicking “Restrict site.”

Repeat this process for every site you visit, and you should notice a significant reduction in targeted ads.

Enable Mozilla Firefox’s Enhanced Tracking Protection 

Firefox has an Enhanced Tracking Protection feature that can block all the cross-site trackers identified by Disconnect. This feature can also preserve your online privacy by blocking social media trackers, fingerprints, and cryptominers, making this a great all-arounder for the security-conscious Internet user.

Enhanced Tracking Protection should be enabled by default. However, you can verify whether it’s active for your particular Firefox installation by navigating to any website. Next, click the little shield icon that appears alongside Firefox’s address bar – you should see a message confirming that Enhanced Tracking Protection is enabled.

Mozilla Firefox's Enhanced Tracking Protection feature is enabled by default.

If Enhanced Tracking Protection isn’t enabled, we recommend activating it: 

1. In Firefox’s upper-right corner, select the three-line icon, then “Preferences.”

2. In the menu on the left, select “Privacy & Security.” 

3. You can now select either “Standard” or “Strict.” Note that “Strict” may affect the functionality of certain websites, so it’s recommended you opt for “Standard” unless you specifically require a greater level of protection. 

Mozilla Firefox users can choose between "Standard" and "Strict" security.

Similar to Chrome, Firefox can send a “Do Not Track” request. While you’re in the “Privacy & Security” menu, you may want to consider activating Mozilla’s Do Not Track feature.

Opera: How to block trackers, and make exceptions

When you first installed Opera, it gave you the option to block trackers. If you didn’t take Opera up on the offer then, you can start blocking trackers now: 

1. Along the left side of the Opera browser, click the cog icon. This opens Opera’s settings. 

2. In the menu on the left, select “Basic.”

3. Find the “Block Trackers” slider and push it into the “On” position.

4. Blocking trackers can impact the functionality of certain websites. If you start noticing strange behavior on a particular website, you may want to add that site to your “Exceptions” list. By allowing this site to use trackers, you should be able to resolve any issues you’re experiencing.

To make an exception for one or more websites:

1. Launch Opera’s settings by clicking the little cog icon.

2. Navigate to “Basic -> Manage Exceptions.”

You can add exceptions to Opera's tracker-blocking list.

3. Click “Add” and then type the address of the site where you want to permit trackers.  

Rinse and repeat for all the sites that you want to add to your exceptions list.