Category Archives: Free Software

WeChat Recover Account Problems

Most of our comments these days have to do with WeChat, almost all pertaining to lost access to accounts. It would seem that hundreds of people are being locked out of their accounts on a daily basis. We’ve begun to think about whether this is really what’s happening or not. Maybe there’s another answer.

Back in the early days of Hotmail, there were many websites that described how to hack someone’s password, mainly because Hotmail was linked to MSN Messenger at that time. Since then, Microsoft has moved on to Skype as a messenger service, leaving Hotmail to its Outlook department. Now when someone suspects their partner of cheating on them, we’re pretty sure they’ll be using WeChat or another social networking app, not Hotmail and Messenger.

That thought led us to believe that many of the comments we get are from jilted lovers who are trying to hack into their current or ex-partner’s account. What else would explain the high number of locked accounts?

We’ve written many posts about WeChat and how to protect your accounts, your privacy and your identity. Maybe it’s time to move on, don’t you think? If you can’t manage to think your way through the process of securing  your account, there’s not much we can do. We’re not WeChat, we just try to help people out.

What we’re trying to say is that it’s not complicated. WeChat works, it’s free and it serves a purpose. If you’re locked out of your account, there is no magic key that will get you back in. If you haven’t covered yourself adequately, it’s not WeChat’s fault. They’re in the business of protecting your account. They’re not in the business of letting you into someone else’s account. For that, we appreciate WeChat’s security setup. From what we can see, it’s foolproof.

WeChat thing
Keep your account safe, use the tools that WeChat gives you.

Finally, if you’ve been locked out of your account, search through our posts to see if you can find a solution. If you can’t find a post that deals with your particular situation, look through the comments to find an answer. From now on, we’re simply going to link to this post when someone asks for help in recovering their account. We hope you understand.

Thanks for reading.

WeChat Shake Problem Solved! (Thanks to one of our readers.)

We’ve had dozens of questions about the WeChat Shake problem.  Users who are ‘shaking’, often get results that seem to be from China, not their own country. This is how one of our readers solved this WeChat Shake problem:

1. Go to your storage settings.

2. Clear the WeChat cache.

3. Move WeChat storage to your SD card.

4. Clear your data.

5. Login and the problem should be solved. Good luck!

How to Make a GIF

A GIF, pronounced jif with a soft g, is a moving picture. It’s not a video, just a series of moving pictures, even if the source is a short video.  That’s why a GIF can look fairly jerky. This jerkiness seems to add an entertainment factor, since a GIF is usually supposed to be funny. GIFS almost always record silly things that people or animals have done. There is no sound involved so the file size is usually quite small, depending on the size of the images.

There are several ways you can make your own GIF but we’ve found an easy and simple way to do it with the help of a website. will take your short video or series of photos and create a GIF that you can then download to your computer. Here’s an example of a GIF that we made from a video that we recorded last weekend:

Gif of NASCAR trip
This might take a moment to load but it’s funny.

We’re not sure what’s happening here but it’s quite hilarious. Here’s how we did it, step by step. You don’t have to go through all of the hoops that we did but the principles are the same.

1. Your video can be from your mobile device, your PVR (as it was for us), your digital camera, anything that creates a small movie. You can also make a GIF out of a series of photos. In order to do that, your photos have to be taken over a short period of time and show the same object(s) in motion. The objects could move or you could take several photos as you move around the item.

2. Find the video or series of photos on your computer. It’s easier to copy and paste them onto your desktop. This makes uploading them to the site much easier.

3. Head over to . At the top of the page you’ll see the following:

Photo of EXGIF site
GIF Maker or Video to GIF is what you’re looking for.


4. If you have a series of photos, click on GIF Maker. For a short video, click on Video to GIF.

5. The tools are all on site. We can’t explain everything that’s there but the principle is basically the same as the tools in Instagram, for instance. Upload your material, change it and arrange it so it looks good to you, then download the finished GIF to your computer.

6. Once it’s on your computer you can share it on various social media sites or email it to friends. About the only thing you can’t do is post it on Facebook. Renren, the Chinese equivalent (more or less) to Facebook is loaded with GIFs. We’re not sure exactly why Facebook doesn’t allow GIFs but they don’t.

7. Our process was substantially more complicated . We’ll run through what we did, just in case you find yourself in the same situation.

We like NASCAR and record every race we can, just in case there’s an interesting bit of action that we’d like to preserve or archive. We saw the stumbling man and thought it would make a perfect GIF.

Our PVR records in an unusual HD file format. We wanted to cut the funny bit out of a much longer video file, something we usually do in Windows Movie Maker, but the original file wouldn’t work in WMM. Using Handbrake, we changed the .ts file into an MP4, a file that would work with WMM. That process took a while since the .ts file was six gigabytes in size. Once we had the MP4 file, we opened it with WMM and cut out the short section we needed and saved it.

Next we uploaded the small MP4 file to and took some time sorting out all of the various settings. You can change the size, the number of frames as well as adding a filter, very much like Instagram. Once we had our GIF the way we wanted it, we downloaded it to our computer.

We’ve given you the basics of GIF creation. If you have problems, feel free to ask us for help. Comments and questions are welcome but  Likes on our Facebook page get immediate attention.  Here’s the link: Computers Made Simple on Facebook .

Thanks for reading!

WeChat – Change your phone number and email

We were stumped for quite a while when we were trying to change our WeChat phone number. Yes, sometimes things confuse us too. WeChat doesn’t make this simple, that’s for sure, but you can do it. Here are some things you need before you begin:

1. To change the telephone number that is linked to WeChat, you must have an email account linked to the app.

2. To change the email account that is linked to WeChat, you must have a verified telephone number associated with it.

Why? Think of this whole thing as a lifeline. If you lose your password, you’re locked out of your account until you can recover it. Unless you have a verified number and/or email account linked to WeChat, they can’t send you instructions to reset your password. WeChat protects you from your own mistakes, more or less.

Of the two, WeChat prefers to use your phone number but an verified email account will work too. Let’s change our phone number first:

1. Make sure that you have a verified email account that is linked to WeChat. (Read 1 and 2 above to find out why.)

2. Here’s the path you need: Open WeChat, press Me, press Settings, press My Account, press Phone Number.

3. Obviously, you have to have a phone number linked to your WeChat account to change, right? Look for the three vertical dots up on the top right. Press them then choose Unlink Phone Number. The three vertical dots are shown here:

Photo of WeChat2
This window shows you two things, only one of which works as it should.

The photo above is confusing. It looks like you can change your phone number by pressing on ‘Change phone number’. You can’t. Until WeChat changes the wording on this window, users will be frustrated by it. The solution? Press the three vertical buttons on the top:

Photo of WeChat 4
You have to unlink your old number before you can link your new one.

4. Once you have unlinked your current number, go through the same series of choices until you get to link your new number. Make sure your phone is on and able to receive test messages. Here are the steps using screen caps:

Photo of WeChat 6
Now your old number is unlinked, press Link Phone Number to use your new one.


Photo of WeChat 7
Type in your new number, no spaces necessary, then press Next.
Photo of WeChat 8
This won’t take long, just a few seconds or so.


You’re waiting for a four digit code to be sent from WeChat to the phone number that you just entered. Once you get it, enter it into the next screen:

Photo of WeChat 9
Enter the numbers then press Next.
Photo of WeChat 10
Done, done and done.

5. The process for changing your linked email account is similar. Same process, unlink your current account then link your new one.

Note: If the text message solution doesn’t work, WeChat will call you with the verification numbers. It will be an computer calling you so get your crayon ready to jot the number down.

We hope this instructional solves your problems. If not, let us know. Comments and questions are welcome but  Likes on our Facebook page get immediate attention.  Here’s the link: Computers Made Simple on Facebook 

Thanks for reading!

Two Irfanview Tutorials – Batch resize and batch rename

Some topics lend themselves to videos as opposed to written posts. We think that this applies to our Irfanview tutorials. There are two new ones up on Youtube, one is about batch renaming photos while the other deals with batch resizing. The first will help you organize your photos into manageable groups by name, the second will help you when you’re sending photos in an email or uploading them to a website. Here they are:


As always, comments, questions and suggestions are welcomed. Fill in the form below or, better yet, ‘Like’ us on Facebook. Here is the link:Computers Made Simple on Facebook. Thanks for reading!


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