Tips ‘n Tricks »
Here you will find tips, tricks, and guides on various different topics, but mainly focused on computers.
VHDs are Virtual Hard Disks that are most commonly used as hard drives for virtual machines. However, VHDs can also be mounted so they act like real hard drives; when mounted they appears to Windows as a real physical hard drive, and you can put files on, edit files on it, remove files on it, etc.…Read More »
How many people here know what bloatware is? Not many probably. That is not to say that everyone here has not encountered bloatware; rather it is saying that many of us never thought of bloatware as…bloatware before. And that is what makes bloatware potentially worse than malware or viruses: not very many people recognize it for what it is, and the ones that do don’t bother to remove it because of inconvenience.…Read More »
There are tons of backup program (free and otherwise) out there in the market right now. I am constantly being asked “how does backup software A compare to backup software B”. Now in some cases this is a valid question. However in many instances, the two software the person wants me to compare are backup software of different nature – one is usually a file backup software while the other is an image backup software; they serve different purposes and therefore are usually incomparable.…Read More »
Update: TrashMail is once again free, but now it requires users to register on TrashMail.net (registration is free).
While reading through the comments of some of my other posts I saw a comment by Ozzie, a regular dotTechie, where she mentioned something about a service called TrashMail in relation to spam e-mail.…Read More »
Not to be confused with virtual process machines, virtual machines are, as Wikipedia puts it, “a software implementation of a machine (i.e. a computer) that executes programs like a physical machine”. They’re operating systems like Windows or Linux inside a separate program on your existing operating system. …Read More »
When using a word processor – such as Microsoft Word – there are features available that allow users to transform, manipulate, and sort text such invert text case, sort ascending, and sort descending. However, what if you aren’t using a full blown word processor, or what if the word processor you are using has limited functionality in regards to manipulating text; what do you do then?…Read More »
dotTech has discussed many macro programs, such as Easy Macro Recorder, Do It Again, etc. While they all have their particular advantages/disadvantages, the one common problem among them all is the inability to create macros based on program/window recognition; all the macros are based off screen positioning, so they are very susceptible to error if the environment changes.…Read More »
Do you have a computer (desktop, notebook, or netbook) that does not have an optical drive? Or, maybe it has an optical drive but the optical drive is broken? Well, then, Paragon Net Burner may be for you. Paragon Net Burner is a software that aims to do one thing and one thing only: Allow users to share CD/DVD/HD-DVD/BD drives (readers and burners) over a network.…Read More »
Google Chrome is great. It is fast, pretty, and (typically) renders web pages well. Unfortunately, Chrome has its fair share of annoyances too. Take, for example, the Google Updater that is shoved up your computer’s hard disk when installing Chrome. Or the Google Update plugin that is secretly implanted into Firefox.…Read More »
Drag2up revolutionizes the process of sharing files: Drag + drop and share [Firefox and Chrome only]
Whether it is with friends, family, coworkers, etc. we – as Internet junkies – are continually sharing files with others. To share a file we typically have to go to the specific file hosting website, upload the file, and link it to others.…Read More »
Ever been just using your computer, and suddenly a message pops up saying you need more disk space?
Don’t fret, we’ve all got it at least once! However, this is no need to run out and buy a new hard drive. …Read More »
Your cell phone company collects and stores more personally identifiable data than Google or Facebook
In a way it sort of makes sense. Your cell phone runs on your telecom’s network and everything you do – unless you run it over WiFi – on your cell phone is run through their towers. So it goes without saying cell phone companies have access to potentially sensitive information.…Read More »
Sometimes hard drives croak. Maybe you’re writing an essay and your computer catches fire. Perhaps you deleted that file that you needed by accident and now you don’t have it. If you did not make external and/or offsite backups, you are SOL.…Read More »
Firefox 7 was released a few days ago. Among other changes, one of the “improvements” made in Firefox 7 is that Firefox no longer shows the HTTP:// part of a URL when visiting a website, e.g. if going to http://dottech.org, Firefox will show dottech.org in the URL/address bar:
(This behavior does not occur when visiting an HTTPS website, i.e.…Read More »
Before I begin this post let me state that the developer of Attribute Changer specifically states “64-bit editions of MS Windows are NOT supported“. Therefore this post is not for 64-bit users; however if you are a 64-bit user and you want to try out this software, please be kind enough to post your results (if you were successful or not) below.…Read More »
Spam, n: a subset of spam that involves nearly identical messages sent to… blah blah blah. We all know what spam is. We all know if we were to publicly display our e-mail addresses, spambots may pick up on it and start, well, spamming us.…Read More »
We all know about VirusTotal (or at least we all should know about VirusTotal). Jotti’s malware scan is a service similar to VirusTotal; it is a service that allows users to scan files with 18 different anti-virus/anti-malware scanner. Jotti’s malware scan works fairly similar to VirusTotal in the sense that users upload individual files, Jotti’s malware scan scans the file and displays the result.…Read More »
Lost your Windows and/or Microsoft Office license key? Use WinKeyFinder to recover them and store them safely encrypted
Do you know your Windows license key? What about your Microsoft Office license key? No? Bummer – what would happen if your computer crashed? Sure, most computers have little stickers on the side that display the Windows license key on them but those little stickers can easily be messed up and fall off (or mutilated by a three year old).…Read More »
When you exercise, your bodies burns calories and you feel hot; you start sweating. The laws of physics (chemistry? biology? who cares…) don’t apply just to you – they apply to your computer, too.
When you use computer the internal components generate heat as a result of the “exercise” you put them through.…Read More »
Recently Microsoft has released preview versions of Windows 8 including Windows 8 Consumer Preview and Windows 8 Developer Preview, pre-Beta releases of Windows 8 designed to give consumers and developers a preview of Microsoft’s next installment of Windows. I am sure there are many dotTechies out there that are dying to give Windows 8 a …preview… but don’t want to install it on their main workhorses.…Read More »
I have noticed there is a bit of confusion out there when it comes to DVDs. People want to burn movie DVDs which they can play on their DVD player but often mix up the action of burning a movie DVD and authoring a movie DVD.…Read More »
Protect your privacy with TunnelVision: automatically block out parts of your screen where your mouse cursor is not
I hate prying eyes. My computer, my work… for my eyes only! Do you feel the same way? You may want to try out TunnelVision.
TunnelVision is simple, lightweight, and open source application which blocks out your whole computer screen except a select area where you mouse cursor is currently located:
With TunnelVision you have the option of configuring how large area is visible, what shape the area is, and the color of the area which is blacked out (you may even add an image):
Here is my visible area changed to rectangle and made larger (40 percent):
One thing you should be warned about: when you first run TunnelVision it will only show you a small area where your mouse cursor is (like my first screenshot above) so you will have to manually find your way to your system tray and change TunnelVision settings via the system tray icon.…Read More »
Eager to get your hands on Windows 8? Starting later today (8 PM PST Tuesday September 13, 2011 or 3 AM GMT Wednesday September 14, 2011) you can download – and install – Windows 8 Developer Preview on your x86 (32-bit) and/or x64 (64-bit) machine.…Read More »
Are you happy with your computer? Are there certain tweaks you could use to make it better? There are several programs you can try. Although CCleaner and the like immediately step into mind, there are good, lesser known pieces of software.…Read More »
While the animated GIF file that you see on the right is certainly pretty funny, what if we want it as a favicon? Or maybe as a giant, huge picture? Resizing an animated GIF is not as easy as resizing, say, a JPG or PNG image.…Read More »
Do you own an iDevice? If yes
you need to reevaluate your priorities in life you can start grabbing paid/premium iOS apps from Starbucks for free!
<– Image credit: Superstrikertwo
Recently Starbucks launched a campaign where they give out one free iOS app every week.…Read More »
You made the (wise) choice of getting a ‘droid and have been roaming dotTech’s Best Free Android Apps repository to sustain your appetite for free apps. However, as fun as free apps are, wouldn’t it be even better if you could (legally) grab paid apps for free (even if the paid apps may not be any more useful than their free counterparts)?…Read More »
Windows is a great operating system, but want to know just how green the grass is on the other side? Try Wubi, a Ubuntu installer for Windows.
The cool thing about Wubi is it installs Ubuntu like a program onto your computer, requiring you to perform no dual-booting or partitioning; just like how you would install Photoshop or Firefox.…Read More »
It seems more and more companies are forcing users to download their “download managers” in order to grab downloads from their websites (e.g. Adobe, Dell, etc.). Sometimes these companies have download-without-download-manager links that users can use; sometimes they don’t. If the download-without-download-manager links are available, the links are often hidden in such a way that you may almost never find them.…Read More »
While some laptops are worse than others, anyone that uses a laptop knows they can heat up. One of the ways to fight overheating laptops is to use external laptop coolers.
Because of how easy they are to manufacture, laptop coolers have flooded the market.…Read More »
We all have one main antivirus/antimalware software installed on our computers. (Or do we?) If you have followed dotTech’s advice and have one of the top-notch ones such as avast!, you are fairly well protected. Even with the protection we have (always use protection) there comes a time when one downloads a shady file from a shady website and we are unsure about its safeness; and thus would like to consult more than one antivirus program and get “second opinions”.…Read More »
In March I discussed 10 freeware programs that I rely heavily upon. Now I will reveal the 4 browser add-ons/plugins that keep my world from falling apart. (Why 4? Well I only use 4 so I can’t really talk about 5 or 6 or 10 or 100.) Since I am a Firefox user, all these add-ons/plugins are for Firefox.…Read More »
One of the advantages of Google Toolbar is the ability to quickly and easily translate websites using Google Translate. The only problem is most of us despise toolbars (including me) and refuse to install any – from Google or other sources – on our computers.…Read More »
Lets pretend you are chatting away with a friend on Windows Live Messenger (or Skype, or Yahoo Messenger, or [insert messenger here]) and he or she asks you for assistance in installing Firefox. Yes, I know even a baby can install Firefox but your friend is very computer-illiterate.…Read More »
Last year I wrote about VTzilla, the official VirusTotal addon for Firefox that allows users to easily scan files with VirusTotal without having to download them. If you are not a Firefox user and you cried when you learned VTzilla was for Firefox only, cry no longer: VirusTotal now offers similar addons for Internet Explorer and Chrome.…Read More »