Posts Tagged ‘ Software

Google Talk Flash App.

A pretty handy feature that I found several months ago is the GoogleTalk flash app.  It connects to GoogleTalk just like their main installable client.  However, the flash version is definitely more portable.

http://talkgadget.google.com/talkgadget/client
http://talkgadget.google.com/talkgadget/popout -Without the “Pop Out” icon in the upper right side of the screen.

If you would like to open this in your FireFox sidebar, open the client link from above and add a bookmark. Right click that new bookmark and go to it’s properties.  Select the “Load this bookmark in sidebar” check box at the bottom.  Click ok and then open the link.

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inSSIDer = NetStumbler for Vista & Win 7 (Windows 7)

In the days of Windows XP, I used a product called NetStumbler to view wireless networks, their relative strengths, and specific broadcast channels.  Since Vista and Windows 7 came a long, I’ve been missing this little app.  Found a new one over at LifeHacker that provides many of the same features for Vista and Windows 7.

* Inspect your WLAN and surrounding networks to troubleshoot competing access points.
* Track the strength of received signal in dBm over time.
* Filter access points in an easy to use format.
* Highlight access points for areas with high Wi-Fi concentration
* Export Wi-Fi and GPS data to a KML file to view in Google Earth.

http://www.metageek.net/products/inssider

Use exFAT for faster flash drive performance

exFAT or (Extended File Allocation Table) is a newer hard drive/flash drive file system designed for mobile devices and well suited for removable devices.  exFAT was first introduced with Vista SP1 and it now ships with Windows 7 as well as Windows server 2008. Microsoft also released a KB to install the drivers on Windows XP, however it is not native to XP.

exFAT is designed to operate with much less overhead than the now standard NTFS file system.  This gives it the ability to run quite efficiently on removable devices.

For a full rundown on the advantages and disadvantages, take a look at the exFAT wikipedia page.

Performance wise exFAT comes out on top for most real life tests, however  FAT32 is still a big contender when it comes to straight file copying.  If you want further tests and benchmark details, head over to TestFreaks.com.  They have way more benchmarking information than you could have asked for or ever wanted.

Microsoft Security Essentials

One of the better, free, no frills virus/malware apps.  I’ve been using MSE for a while now and have found it to a good piece of software.  MSE has a very small footprint and keeps to itself, yet it’s quite effective at finding malicious software.  I’ve had it come up with a few  items from spam I received (I might have purposely opened them to do some testing).  If you are interested in a free PC protection solution head over to http://www.microsoft.com/security_essentials/ to take a look.

For further information on how MSE ranks among its competitors here is another article you can look at. http://lifehacker.com/5433229/microsoft-security-essentials-ranks-as-best+performing-free-antivirus

XAMPP:Apache,MySQL,FTP,Mercury & Tomcat

XAMPP is a free application that allows you to run an Apache, MySQL, FTP, Mecury, and Tomcat server in Windows. It can be portable or you can install it as a service. XAMPP is an awesome application for web development or even production environments.

If you haven’t used it before head over to http://www.apachefriends.org/en/xampp.html and download one of the packages and give it a try.

FireFox Addon:WebMail Notifier

WebmailNotifierAwesome little Firefox Addon. WebMail Notifier is a simple little addon that allows you to setup many web accounts for automatic notification if you get an email or message in one of those accounts. It has an “add script” feature that can be used to create custom account notifications or select from the currently available list. Currently I set mine up to monitor my Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo accounts as well as Adsense, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

Vibe Streamer

Vibe Streamer is a pretty impressive little app. It allows you to stream music from your home PC/Server directly to a browser anywhere in the world.

I recently setup this little app on my windows home server, pointed it to my music folder(mp3s) and it went right to work. It goes through and indexes your files adding them to it’s list of streamable/playable music. The app itself is simple but powerful. You can add multiple users, folders and shares and everything can be locked down via permissions.

If you would like to try it out on my server, head over to http://joelchristian.selfip.com:8081. Username is “guest” and the Password is “password”.

µTorrent: Best Windows Torrent Client

If you use torrents and haven’t used µTorrent yet, you should give it a try. It’s one of the best free torrent clients out there. With features including Protocol Encryption, Unicode support, multi tracker torrents,UPnP, and RSS Torrent subscriptions. Recently with their version 2.0 beta release they have added UDP support and automatic bandwidth regulation.

µTorrent along with a site like EZtv can be very useful if you enjoy downloading recent TV Episodes.

One of the coolest features is the web user interface. The web interface allows you to add, remove and manage your torrents remotely.