Something New at Bookmarks4Techs.com

January 31, 2012

I am writing to you to let you know there is something NEW at Bookmarks4Techs.com that consists of a new posting regimen and a new layout of the sites’ content.

Bookmarks4Techs.com is a second website that I maintain that initially started out as a large collection of links to tech sites. That large collection is still there; however, the site is now at another level where I can comfortably post content at a comfortable pace. I would also like to point out that the site is for everyone (especially home users) and not just Techs.

Bookmarks4Techs.com

Most everyone loves computers, software and anything related to information technology. It has become entrenched in our daily lives. What I have started at Bookmarks4Techs, that is NEW, is a posting regimen that I am calling “Bookmark This”. One of my obsessions is cruising the internet at hyper-speed and finding anything that is FREE and is related to computers, software and information technology.

What “Bookmark This” is going to bring to you is a way to quickly capture (and quickly read) what I think is good out there or something that I found that is exciting that you should know about (i.e. an article from another blogger FREE software, an Android App, etc…). Now what is good to one person, may not be good to another; but, I think as this develops, the selections that are made will be recognized as top quality. I research and play around with everything I recommend. I have experience doing this from managing “What’s On My PC” and from working as an IT Professional for over 20 years.

The layout of the site has also been changed and consists of (6)-six tab areas:

Home Page– Daily Posts (which will primarily feature Tech Products of the Day, Tech Deals, the Bookmark This posts, FREE and Paid Android Apps, etc…).  I will tell you up front, that I am an Amazon Associate and you will see me pointing out to you the best of the best at Amazon.

Bookmarks4Techs– Features over 500 Links to Tech Sites. I am working to clean this up and remove the dead links. It is amazing how many sites are now dead since I started this. Blogging and maintaining a site is hard work and the number of sites that have went dead in the water really surprised me.

Bookmark This Collection – When I do a “Bookmark This” post, the collection of these posts will be managed and collected. The list is currently short, but give it time; it will grow. Again, I will only list quality FREE software, cloud apps, etc…  This will serve as a good resource for those looking for good quality FREE software, information, etc…

Shop for Deals– This will link you to the Bookmarks4Techs Amazon Store that I have put together. Give it a try. I think you will like it.  I am pretty proud of how this turned out.

Amazon Deal of the Day– Deal of the Day is featured from this tab. I hit this tab every day; where Amazon will make huge price cuts on products, etc…

About– Some information about me as a blogger and IT professional.

Also, on the left sidebar of the site, make sure you check out the Shop @ Amazon listing. I have tried to make a general category listing to assist you with looking for specific computer products (i.e. a mouse pad, keyboard, etc…).

On both sidebars you will find feeds from some of the top tech blogs out there.  If you want to know what is going on, all you have to do is scroll down through these sidebars. The bloggers who maintain these sites are some of the best of the best.

To subscribe to Bookmarks4Techs.com by email [ CLICK HERE ] and to subscribe to Bookmarks4Techs by RSS [ CLICK HERE ]By subscribing you will be alerted to the most recent posts. You can back out of either of these subscriptions anytime.

I encourage you to take the time and visit Bookmarks4Techs.com and help me make it a successful site. If you are a tech blogger and you do not see your site on the bookmarks list, please let me know. I will almost surely add your site providing it offers solid content and is maintained regularly. Also, by adding Bookmarks4Techs.com to your blogroll will help to support what I am intending to accomplish.

Thank You !

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GEEK BONUS AREA

Bookmark This (#9) – WinPatrol

FREE Today Only – Learning to Draw is Fun (Android App)

Top Five – Digital Media Adapters at Amazon

HOT – Download Free Norton Identity Safe Beta – Simple, Secure, Password Management For Windows, iOS, And Android

Gold Box: New Deals. Every Day.

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The “My 7 Links Challenge” at What’s On MY PC

January 30, 2012

The Webmaster of Computer How To Guide contacted me directly via email and informed me that he had nominated What’s On My PC for the My 7 Links Challenge. Upon receiving this email and nomination I was reluctant to participate and was thinking, what is this all about?

My 7 Links Challenge

It appears that the My 7 Links Challenge has originated from a blog called Tripbaseblog, and after previewing the site and reading the rules [HERE], I decided to participate. It will be interesting to see what traffic comes this way after taking on this challenge.

The goal of this challenge is to unite bloggers (from all sectors) in a joint endeavor to share lessons learned and create a bank of long but not forgotten blog posts that deserve to see the light of day again.

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What I have to do here is dig up 7 links from What’s On My PC for the following categories; then, nominate (5)-five more bloggers.

The most beautiful post
The most popular post
The most controversial post
The most helpful post
A post whose success surprised me
A post I feel didn’t get the attention it deserved
The post that you I am most proud of

Let the challenge begin…  Thank you Computer How To Guide for the nomination!  I actually enjoyed doing this…

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The Most Beautiful post at What’s On My PC…

HAPPY THANKSGIVING – Giving Thanks To My Readers

In this post I gave thanks to anyone who has ever visited my blogs (What’s On My PC and Bookmarks4Techs).  I randomly picked the first reader of the blog I could locate and gave recognition to them. In this case, by chance, it was another blog – Talinorfali – Just Another WordPress Blog.  The response from this was awesome…

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The Most Popular Post at What’s On My PC…

If you experience Windows Vista Service Pack 2 installation issues…

Windows Vista, when released, was a disappointment and actually set Microsoft back a few steps. This article was drafted, not to provide a specific solution, but to provide options to explore that may lead to resolving the problem where the Service Pack failed to install…

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The Most Controversial post at What’s On My PC…

bing – Microsoft’s New Search Engine

This post was drafted back in May of 2009 when Microsoft was making a play for it with its’ search engine Bing. For some reason, as a result of this post, readers thought I was Microsoft.  As a result, I received (and still do) a flood of responses requesting I (Ramblin’ Rick) remove Bing from their computers…  Bill Gates, you owe me on this one!

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The Most Helpful post at What’s On My PC…

Adding a “Watermark” in Microsoft Word 2003 or 2007

To this day, this post has driven up the visits to the blog.  When I was an IT Manager, I found that helping people with matters such as this to get their work done made their day and made mine, as well…

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The post at What’s On My PC where the Success Surprised Me

Creating an AOL Install CD… (if you must:)

Remember AOL (America Online) and how they would send you the CDs in the mail, as a marketing tactic, to entice you to subscribe to their service? Well, they stopped doing that and it created a dilemma for people who needed to manually install AOL.  I came up with a solution (on my own) and posted it…

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The post I feel Didn’t Get The Attention It Deserved at What’s On MY PC…

A Three Step Guide To Email Ethics…

This post dealt with email ethics and I do not think people really got the point of what I was driving at on how to spot the lie, don’t be part of the lie and don’t start the lie.  I guess folks didn’t like the idea that some of them are living in a world of email lies…

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The Most Proud Of post at What’s On My PC…

Symptoms of a Failing Computer Power Supply

“Computers, you either love ‘em or you hate ‘em”.  This post was from my own personal experience of dealing with a failing power supply…

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To pass the blogger’s torch on and to keep the My 7 Links Challenge going, What’s On My PC nominates the following blogs to take this challenge:

Tech-for Everyone (met the challenge – CLICK HERE )

Bill Mullins’ Weblog – Tech Thoughts (met the challenge – CLICK HERE)

TTC Shelbyville (met the challenge – CLICK HERE)

404 Tech Support

Plato On-Line

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GEEK BONUS AREA

FREE Today Only – Money (Android App)

Bookmark This (#7) – TuneTune

Tech Product of the Day –
Microsoft LifeChat LX-3000 Headset

HOT The Bookmarks4Techs Amazon.com Store

Gold Box: New Deals. Every Day.

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Wallpaper of the Week (#54)

January 28, 2012

I love animal wallpapers and this one of a Rhino, called Inherently Powerful, Unexpectedly Sweet (By Said Ehrlich), is awesome.

To Get This Wallpaper [ CLICK HERE ]

Rhino Wallpaer

Browse for wallpapers from previous weeks, [CLICK HERE]

Windows 7 Users: If you are using Windows 7, did you know you can create a desktop background slideshow to show off your pictures and wallpaper images?  To learn how to use this feature [ CLICK HERE ] .

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Gold Box: New Deals. Every Day.

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Launch of Google’s Emergency Public Alert Service

January 27, 2012

Today’s post is an important one that ultimately and literally could be a lifesaver. Google, in conjunction with their mapping technology, has launched [see here] a platform service called Google Public Alerts that is designed to help you find critical emergency information during a crisis. The intent of the platform is to disseminate emergency messages such as the location of crisis events (such as hurricanes and earthquakes) and what actions to take (such as evacuation notices).

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The Google Public Alerts service uses alerts provided by our authoritative, trusted partners. What alert you see (if any) depends on what alerts are active at a given location, on their severity, and on what you search for and where. To see all alerts go to the Google Public Alerts homepage.

Google Public Alerts currently shows weather, public safety and earthquake alerts from US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the National Weather Service, and the US Geological Survey (USGS).

Keep in mind that Google Public Alerts is a new baby, with future improvements expected (beyond weather and earthquakes), and should only be used as a supplemental tool or resource in determining the extent and degree of an emergency event. To see more on this [CLICK HERE].

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Geek Bonus Area

Tech Product of the Day –
Thermaltake BlacX eSATA USB Docking Station

Featured Tech Site of the Day – Tech Airlines

IsMyLcdOK

HOT – Dear Otto: What iPad Apps Do You Recommend?
@ Ask A Tech Teacher

Check Out the NEW Bookmarks4Techs Computer Store

 Bookmarks4Techs Computer Store

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Hide Everything Outside the Main Application with CinemaDrape

January 26, 2012

With the advent of the widescreen LCD/LED monitor we have established a visual landscape where we can easily open more than one application on the screen and take in more information. Under most circumstances this is a wonderful thing; however, I know myself there are times I wish I could create a distraction free environment and hide everything on the screen except the main task (or application) I am focused on.

Well, my wish came true with CinemaDrape

CinemaDrape helps you focus on your current task on the screen (such as a video in a web page, a photo or a document editor area) by instantly blanking or dimming the other less important areas in a web page or in the background windows.

CinemaDrape gives you the ability to turn off (or hide) the side elements by exposing a drape.  For example, let’s say you want to watch a video and hide everything else on the screen.  It is possible with CinemaDrape.  The drape will cover everything but the video.  To get the idea, watch the video [ HERE ] .

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Once you install CinemaDrape, there are two things to remember. By pressing Ctrl + F12 on your keyboard will startup CinemaDrape and by pressing Esc on your keyboard will close CinemaDrape. CinemaDrape requires no memory when the drape is not active and no extra tray icon!

Easy to start

CinemaDrape is easy to start: just move your mouse over the area you want to focus on and press Ctrl+F12 (or your own favorite custom keyboard combination). This works in any Web browser or in any other program you are using.

To focus an entire window (such as your current, active window), just move your mouse over the title bar at the top of the window and press Ctrl+F12.

To focus the previously selected area from the last time the CinemaDrape was used, use the Ctrl+Alt+F12 keyboard shortcut anywhere in Windows.

Easy to close

CinemaDrape is easy to close: just press Esc or select Quit from the context menu.

CinemaDrape is also very customizable in that you can resize the focus window, save the focus window as a favorite (to use later), and  change the color of the surrounding drape.

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GEEK BONUS AREA

Today’s Best Sellers – Intel Motherboards

Tech Product of the Day – Toshiba 14-inch USB
Ultra-Portable Mobile LCD Monitor

HOT – Do You Use A Debit or Credit Card? Watch This
@ Tech-for Everyone

HOT – music2pc 2.12

Gold Box: New Deals. Every Day.

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CX.com Now Has An Android App Available

January 25, 2012

I have been watching for this… CX.com, a relative newcomer to online file storage and sharing, now has an Android app available that will get you to your CX.com files online. The app is still in the very basic stages of development and does not have any syncing or uploading features built into the app (yet). I do look for that to change.

What this all means at this point in time, is that if you use an Android OS based smartphone or tablet you can now access your CX.com files from those platforms. You can get the app at the Android Marketplace [ HERE ] or via your Android Smartphone or Tablet device. Once you install the app your device will alert you when any upgrades occur, just like any other Android installed app.

If you do not know what CX.com is; then read this recent article:

Get 10 GBs of FREE Online Storage
to Store, Share, Access Anytime, Anywhere

CX.com

Once you sign up for the FREE CX.com account, you will get 10 GBs of online space; and for every person you signup you will receive an additional 300 MBs of space (up to 16 GBs).  I am a CX.com user and I am nearing the 16 GB mark; however, I am still not quite there.  If you do signup with CX.com, please [ CLICK HERE ] .  This will help me reach the mark.

Take the potential 16 GBs of space from CX.com, plus 25 GBs that Microsoft has available for FREE [ SEE HERE ] and you will walkaway with over 40 GBs of online storage.  Not too shabby is it?

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GEEK BONUS AREA

Tech Product of the Day –
Toshiba 14-inch USB Ultra-Portable Mobile LCD Monitor

HOT, HOT, HOT –  Giveaway of the Day – Glary Utilities Pro 2.41

A Tablet PC for the Budget Minded

HOTThe Bookmarks4Techs Amazon.com Store

Gold Box: New Deals. Every Day.

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A Nice Google Chrome Extension to Convert Any Video from YouTube to High Quality MP4, FLV or MP3 for FREE

January 24, 2012

One of the rewards to maintaining a tech blog that has a strong emphasis toward reviewing (and testing) FREE software, is when a reader contacts you and points you in the direction of something that is good. The reader in this case, as a result of reading the past article, “Keep An Eye On This: Freemake Music Box” said this:

Today I want to share a free video converter with you. I just found it on CNET. Similar to FreeMake, but it has both windows and mac version.

Here is the product page:

http://www.wontube.com/free-video-converter.html

And their chrome extension is good to. I can convert youtube to mp3 and download youtube clips one click.

Here is the link for chrome extension:

https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/nlhcllbknkijepekbafagpbniolfcmme

I hope that will be valuable and can help others.

Please keep going on. Thanks again.

If you notice, a couple web links of interest in terms of a video converter (called WonTube) is mentioned, but the one link that I especially was interested in was the link for the Google Chrome Extension (of WonTube).

Before I get into the description of the WonTube Chrome Extension, please note that the first link he reflected is to the Windows and Mac software versions of WonTube.  If you do not use Google Chrome, you may then be interested in the software version [ CLICK HERE ].

The Google Chrome Extension of WonTube is actually something I had been looking for; where I could, “on the fly”, straight from the Google Chrome browser window download YouTube videos and convert them to another video format or convert them to an audio format (such as MP3). By doing this, I do not have to exit the browser window to start up other software on the computer to perform the desired task.

The WonTube Extension, after installed, sort of threw me off due I was looking for a button at the top of the browser. Where the magic works here is when you go to the YouTube site. When you pull up the desired video that you want to work with, you will see two buttons embedded near the YouTube video title (see below for example). One button is labelled “Download Video” and the other button is labelled “Convert to mp3”. Click on your desired choice and you will be redirected to the WonTube conversion site where the conversion will (quickly) take place.  Following the conversion you will have the option to download the converted result.

WonTube Screenshot

To the reader of the blog, who contacted me about WonTube, What’s On My PC, says Thank You…  Nice find!

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GEEK BONUS AREA

Top Ten Best Sellers – Uninterrupted Power Supplies (UPS)

FREE Today Only – Connect the Dots & Color (Android App)

Help Protect Your PC from Malware with
Malwarebytes Anti-Malware FREE

An Excellent Customer Review on the iPad 2

Gold Box: New Deals. Every Day.

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Geek Squeaks’ (#70) – A Rogue Killer, Streaming Media Player, Online Safety Advice, Virtual Drive Software and an Android Wallpaper Pack

January 23, 2012

RogueKiller

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RogueKiller is a tool written in C + +, which scans the running processes and kill those who are malicious . The tool was developed after it was seen that some rogues (eg Security Tools) blocks the execution of disinfection programs, and some programs (eg rkill) appeared ineffective in killing the rogue process

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Enjoy Internet Entertainment On Your TV – Western Digital WD TV Live Streaming Media Player

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Do You Surf The Net Naked?
@ Paul’s Home Computing Blog

Security Virus image

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Virtual Drive For Netbooks: Virtual CloneDrive
@ Netbook Freeware

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Best Android Digital Art Wallpaper Pack for Mobile/Tablet @ Mrintech

android logo

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Computers & Accessories Index

LARGEST COLLECTION –  Bookmarked Tech Sites

MORE Geek Squeaks

SHOP @ Bookmarks4Techs Amazon Store

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Wallpaper of the Week (#53)

January 21, 2012

This week’s wallpaper “Save The Planet” depicts the earth as a one big jigsaw puzzle with pieces missing and people trying to put the pieces back.

To Get This Wallpaper [ CLICK HERE ]

Wallpaper of the Week

Browse for wallpapers from previous weeks, [CLICK HERE]

Windows 7 Users: If you are using Windows 7, did you know you can create a desktop background slideshow to show off your pictures and wallpaper images?  To learn how to use this feature [ CLICK HERE ] .

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Gold Box: New Deals. Every Day.

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Bookmark This for Full Commercial Software Giveaways

January 20, 2012

Bill Mullins’, who is north of my border, and the webmaster at Bill Mullins’ Weblog – Tech Thoughts, does not know this (yet), but he pointed me in the direction to something this morning that really caught my attention; that I did not know existed.

Bill posted on his site Download Crew Giveaway – Today Only – Acronis True Image Personal 2010. If you do not know what Acronis True Image is about, I encourage you to visit Bill’s site and take advantage of what he has posted. It is very good software and will save you a whole lot of trouble if your computer goes south on you.

Download Crew Giveway

Having a passion for software (especially FREE software), what caught my attention, as a result of Bill’s article, was that Download Crew offers periodic giveaways of commercial software. I did not know that and if you did not know that, I encourage you to bookmark the giveaway site [CLICK HERE] .

The Downloadcrew website is brought to you by Betanews Inc who are best known for FileForum, which is a bleeding-edge downloads site, offering you the very latest software betas and the final release downloads.

We do not believe in bringing you a sub-standard full software giveaways. With this in mind, we will notbe offering a daily giveaway. Besides, the logistics and resources involved are incredible. This may change in the future, however, depending on the popularity of this giveaway website.

We aim to provide a minimum one or two free full commercial products each week. The giveaway days will be random, but you can follow us on Facebook, Twitter, follow our RSS feed, keep one eye on the Downloadcrew website or bookmark Downloadcrew Giveaway!

Thank you Bill for sharing your find with us this morning!

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GEEK BONUS AREA

New Laptops for 2012 Buying Guide

Featured Software of the Day – Ultra PDF Merger

FREE Today Only – Lame Castle (Android App)

Gold Box: New Deals. Every Day.

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All-In-One Protection for iPad, iPhone, Android Tablets, and Android Smartphones.

January 19, 2012

Being a Toshiba Thrive Tablet owner, with the Android OS, one of my main concerns is malware. Basically, everything I have explored (in terms of security software), I have little confidence in, or it slows down the tablet to a crawl, or it sucks the life out the battery. You have to keep in mind, these tablet devices (and smartphones) are really in the beginning cycle of life and that the antivirus, antispyware and antimalware protection being offered for these devices are also in the beginning cycle of life. As a result, the potential threat of an infection, in my opinion, is high. Let’s face it, these devices are designed to be cloud (or web) based and in today’s world the viral threats we are exposed to are predominantly also web based. In essence, click on a bad link and your tablet (or smartphone) could go south real quick. Then on the flip side of all of this, I have found on the internet that threats to the Android OS is virtually impossible (which to me any OS platform is susceptible). The incentive for attackers to take advantage of all of these shortcomings is on the rise. In the meantime I continue to educate myself to what is necessary and what is not.

Another factor here with tablets and smartphones is that the amount of personal information being stored on these devices is phenomenal. Lose the tablet (or smartphone) and bye, bye personal information and access to all your online accounts. Most people, including myself, due to the lack of a “typical” keyboard, and for the matter of convenience, will have our tablets (or smartphones) set to automatically remember our passwords so that we do not have to type them in (one reason to have the device locked and password protected).

During my search for some type of protection on my Toshiba, I came across an app called Lookout Mobile Security that claims to provide protection for malware, including trojans, worms, spyware and other suspicious software; and, claims to scan all apps, including inner directories and files – and also scans devices for any files that are capable of being executed on the particular device.

Lookout

Lookout Mobile Security is available as a paid app or a FREE app that has limited functionality. From what I am seeing on my Android (Toshiba Thrive) tablet is that the Lookout FREE version is giving me a Security Protection feature, a Backup feature and a Missing Device feature.

The Security feature, as mentioned before, claims to provide protection for malware, including trojans, worms, spyware and other suspicious software.

The Backup feature allows you to backup your contacts, call history and pictures to a myLookout.com account. (This feature I opted out on).

The Missing Device feature is a really cool feature that can be used locate your device, on a Google Map, from a myLookout.com account. I tested this feature out and it located my tablet within a couple of minutes. I was then sent an email with a Google map that displayed the location of my Toshiba Thrive (plus the longitude and latitude). You can even remotely activate an alarm on the device from the account. If you upgrade to the Premium paid version, once you locate your missing device, you can remotely, over the web, wipe the data from it.

image

So far, with more testing ahead, Lookout Mobile Security has been tablet friendly with no noticeable degradation in performance. I am still watching the battery levels to determine if it is taking away from the battery life during a session of using the tablet.

I still have more testing to perform with this; however, I thought I would throw all of this out there in chance it may help someone else out there who owns an iPhone, iPad, Android Tablet or Android Smartphone.

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GEEK BONUS AREA

Featured Tech Site of the Day–I Love Free Software

A Multimedia Powerhouse – The ASUS N53SV-DH72 15.6-Inch Full HD Versatile Entertainment Laptop

HOT – How To Repair the Windows Recycle bin
@ Tech-for Everyone

HOT – Factory Reset for many devices
@ TTC Shelbyville

HOT – Take Your Modified Application Installer And Shove It!
@ Bill Mullins’ Weblog – Tech Thoughts

Gold Box: New Deals. Every Day.

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FREE Software to “Hard Wipe” and Permanently Erase Data on Hard Drives and Portable Media

January 18, 2012

The day will come when you will replace your tech toys; and, when I say tech toys I am talking about your desktop computer, notebook, smartphone, flash drive, tablet, etc…  When that time comes it will become necessary to erase the data (personal files, pictures, music, etc…) from those toys. Failure to “permanently” erase the data or sanitize the media source, in these devices, can easily result in your privacy being compromised.  Simply deleting files, by normal means, will not cut it.

You are probably thinking I suffer from paranoia, and that it is next to impossible to retrieve files from media after the files have been deleted.  I can tell you from experience, by using recovery software that it is easily obtainable on the internet, I have retrieved deleted files from hard drives (even dead hard drives) and have been especially successful in retrieving files from the non-moving type of drives and media such as flash drives, camera cards, SSD drives and even smartphones. Yes, even smartphones…  If it can be connected to a PC and shows up as drive, the data can be recovered even after you have deleted it.

There are numerous popular software options available that you can use to sanitize a drive; however, I found a new kid on the block called Hardwipe that I am currently keeping an eye on.  As a matter of fact Hardwipe is in active development, but has already become a worthy contender in my book.

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Hardwipe can be used as  standalone application from the Windows Start Menu or you can use it from within Windows Explorer by right-clicking on file system items and selecting the appropriate Hardwipe menu command. The developers of Hardwipe aspire to become a  leading data sanitization software solution. See their White Paper on Data Sanitization, Recovery & Security

Hardwipe lets you do the following:

  • Easily wipe entire drives and portable devices.
  • Wipe individual files or clean empty drive space of remanent data.
  • Right-click within Windows Explorer for Hardwipe commands.

Features also include:

  • Efficient — Hardwipe is fast in comparison other data wiping software.
  • Intelligent use of disk cache allows your computer to remain responsive during lengthy disk operations.
  • Automatic computer shutdown when wiping is complete.
  • Supports all major data wiping schemes, including: GOST R 50739-95, DOD 5220.22-M, Schneier & Gutmann.

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GEEK BONUS AREA

Kindle Fire How-To Guide

Advanced System Care – Over 130 Million Users

Featured Tech Product – Sennheiser RS120 926 MHz Wireless RF Headphones with Charging Cradle

Featured Tech Site of the Day – Paul’s Home Computing Blog

Gold Box: New Deals. Every Day.

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A “Must Have” Portable App Suite for Techs

January 17, 2012

If you have geek in your blood, then I am sure you have heard of the utilities developed by Windows Sysinternals and NirSoft . If not, below is a description of each:

The Sysinternals web site was created in 1996 by Mark Russinovich and Bryce Cogswell to host their advanced system utilities and technical information. Whether you’re an IT Pro or a developer, you’ll find Sysinternals utilities to help you manage, troubleshoot and diagnose your Windows systems and applications.

NirSoft web site provides a unique collection of small and useful freeware utilities, all of them developed by Nir Sofer. Nir Sofer is an  experienced developer with extensive knowledge in C++, .NET Framework, Windows API, and Reverse Engineering of undocumented binary formats and encryption algorithms.

The tech utilities maintained by these two sites are phenomenal and are utilities that every tech should have available on their flash drives. As a matter of fact, there are so many of them it is a chore to keep them up to date or remember what task each utility actually performs; HOWEVER, there is a solution to this problem.

Today, I want to show you another utility called WSCC (Windows System Control Center) that will bring the Windows Sysinternals utilities, the NirSoft utilites and your Windows based (built-in) utilities together as a software suite.  WSCC is FREE and is a portable app.

Screenshot

WSCC

WSCC is a free, portable program that allows you to install, update, execute and organize the utilities from various system utility suites. WSCC can install and update the supported utilities automatically. Alternatively, WSCC can use the http protocol to download and run the programs. WSCC is portable, installation is not required. Extract the content of the downloaded zip archive to any directory on your computer.

WSCC is a must have program for techs.  WSCC serves as the gateway to downloading all of these utilities in a batch, will allow you to perform batch updates of the utilities and the best part is this; WSCC defines what the utility actually does.  There may be many utilities that you do not need, but I am telling you, this is the way to go.  This program will keep everything nice and organized (and up to date).

IMPORTANT TO POINT OUT:  When dealing with utilities such as these, it is not uncommon for your antivirus software to detect these  type of utilities as being a bad guy (or what is called a False Positive). In this case, any of the utilities developed by either of these parties are the good guys and you can tell your antivirus software that it is OK to let them through.

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GEEK BONUS AREA

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How To Insert An Image As A Watermark In Microsoft Word 2010

January 16, 2012

Recently I posted an article, “Get It While You Can – Microsoft Office Starter 2010”, describing how you can get the Starter Edition of Microsoft Word 2010 and how the Starter Edition of MS-Word will serve to meet your needs in the department of word processing. Folks, I have been using the Starter Edition on a regular basis and I have yet come to a situation where I needed a feature that is in the full version (which costs a lot of money).  I am sure I may run into the wall with this, but I have not yet.

As a result of finally getting the opportunity to play around with MS-Word 2010, I decided today to put up a post on how you can take an image (or picture) and insert it as a watermark in your document. These same steps can be used to insert a normal text based watermark, as well.

If you are unfamiliar with watermarks…  Watermarks are faint imprints on the background of the document to designate the status of the document. For example, one of the most common watermarks that I have seen and used is the “DRAFT” watermark to indicate that a document is in the draft mode.

Screenshot - DRAFT Watermark

Other common watermarks used are “Confidential” and “ASAP”..; BUT, what if you want to use an image as a watermark to brand a document or to decorate the document?

To insert an image as a watermark in Microsoft Word 2010, follow these steps:

1.  Pull up your document in Word.  Click on the Page Layout tab at the top menu, click on Watermark, then at the bottom of the drop down click on Custom Watermark.

Screenshot - Watermark

2.  After you click on Custom Watermark, the Printed Watermark dialog box will appear.  When this box appears, click on Picture Watermark and Select Picture button will become active.  At this point, click on the Select Picture button to retrieve the image (or picture) you desire for the watermark image.

Screenshot - Printed Watermark Dialog box

3.  When retrieving the image (or picture) you desire, make sure you select the Washout check box so that the selected image (or picture) is lightened.  At this point, you can also change the scale of the image.

Once you select a watermark and embed it in the document, it becomes visible throughout the entire document.  If you need to turn “off” or change the watermark, simply follow these steps again.

If you are a Microsoft Office 2003 and 2007 user, be sure to check out a related article titled:

Adding a “Watermark” in Microsoft Word 2003 or 2007

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Wallpaper of the Week (#52)

January 14, 2012

This HD Wallpaper (from Crispme) of these fighter jets really caught my attention.  Makes you feel you are right in the cockpit behind them!

To Get This Wallpaper[ CLICK HERE ]

Jet Fighter Wallpaper

Browse for wallpapers from previous weeks, [CLICK HERE]

Windows 7 Users: If you are using Windows 7, did you know you can create a desktop background slideshow to show off your pictures and wallpaper images?  To learn how to use this feature [ CLICK HERE ] .

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