Good computer magazine for beginner


Jul 25, 2005
I have a family member who is not tech savvy and wants to get smarter. He is a Windows computer user and asked if there was a print magazine I would recommend. Obviously most of this stuff is now on websites like So a website might be fine if there is no magazine these days.

He does have an old Android smartphone (first Moto X), but no laptop or tablet. He shares a desktop computer (Windows 7) with other family members so it is not always available. Lives in the midwest and most of the folks around him are not tech savvy either. Early 50s but willing and open to learning new things.

He would like to be smarter with Windows computer general use (Windows updates, antivirus, driver updates, tune-up software, avoiding malware or phishing, etc).

One more question, does Microsoft have stores where they offer training similar to the Apple stores? If so, maybe send him there.
Can't speak for the training at a Microsoft store but it's certainly worth looking into. As for a magazine to be smarter with Windows computer general use, you're not going to get much better than Windows Magazine:

It's available at most bookstores if they still exist like Barnes & Noble, but realize they're UK magazines so when they get imported over here they can be quite expensive, like $12-15 an issue for the actual physical printed editions (they do typically include a DVD with software on them related to articles in the given issue as well) and much cheaper for the digital versions, sometimes as a PDF you can download to read on given devices.

That magazine is now "officially" known as Windows 7 Help & Advice, by the way. Years ago it was The Official Windows Magazine but for whatever reason they altered the name but it's the same content/writers/publisher now.

Windows Central is a fairly decent website from what I gather, has a lot of info and a somewhat tolerable layout:

A lot of those Future magazines (that's the name of the publisher, Future plc, based in the UK) are actually quite nice. Large format (not typical "small" aka normal magazines, these are quite large with big clear print, not that your friend is going blind but as I'm now past the half-century mark the larger magazines are actually very welcome in my opinion). But as noted, expect to pay a larger price for them.

I would personally recommend such a person wanting to learn things to avoid magazines like PC Computing and PC World as those spend more time focusing on product reviews and not very good info overall plus of course tons of ads and not actually useful content. Maximum PC has decent articles, and while it's got a slant towards "best of the best" type hardware it can have some great articles now and again to keep up with what's going on in the computer industry meaning actual computing devices).

And of course there's the Internet and forums like this one that have great communities (OK, most of the Internet is absolute shit, let's be honest) and obviously your friend has you to ask questions of as well, right? :D

Personal recommendation: avoid any and all "tune up software" like the proverbial plague, seriously, because there's never been such a thing worth the hassles it can traditionally cause in the long run.
I recommend the Hustler magazine. It may not make him more tech savvy but it'll make him happy. :D

Seriously though, magazines are a thing of the past. He'd be better off finding some online resources and those may even be free such as watching tech related youtube vloggers.
Just point him towards [H] and we will treat him real friendly-like. Honest.
Nothing is better than forums like this or Google/DuckDuckGo, but Maximum PC digital or hard copy through a multitude of digital readers is always hitting on things that you may not be thinking about. Their new editorial staff has things getting pretty good for beginners and enthusiast alike.
If he wants tech in general, check TechIngredients on Youtube for example.
Learn by doing. Is it possible to get them a spare system they could play around with? That's how I taught my two nephews. I had them build and work on an old tower. Once they felt comfortable, I helped them build a modest gaming system.