2011.01.28 View any Video File
My favorite video play is the FREE
Video player Classic - Home-Cinema. That coupled
K-Lite Media Megapack gives you an unbeatable
combination that will tackle the most difficult file you
encounter. You'll also be glad to know that if you have
only limited capability on your machine, this is truly a
workhorse. It's not loaded with stuff you'll never use.
It just sits there and does its job wither it's a downloaded
video or a DVD you can depend on it's performance. It's
the only one I use. You have a file that just won't play?
GSpot to analyze the file and determine what codec's are
2011.01.19 Windows 7
and FREE software
(Free is always a good thing)
I've recently migrated my
desktop from Vista to Windows 7. So far I like it even if
some of the old familiar features are restricted by the OS.
It is time for an update
on some of my favorite pieces of
software that I feel are must have for every system and which
work well with W7.
The first is the graphic
it's official plug-ins. The second is the lightweight pdf
Reader which offers all the advantages of Adobe without the
bloat. Then there is
pdf printer to make your own pdf documents as easily as
printing from any application, creating a document that can be
read on any platform without the originating software.
three products I use most heavily for saving browser pages, on
line receipts, scanning multipage documents, or scanning
pictures to jpg or other graphic format. I scan into
Irfanview using my Epson Artisan 800 all in one
printer/scanner/copier/fax. Then I can, edit it (crop,
correct quality, add text, change image size,...) then save
either as a graphic file (jpg, tiff, or almost any other format)
and/or print it (photo, standard paper or pdf). It's hard
to beat this combination of FREE production tools.
The best Suite of
maintenance tools are free from
This performs pretty much all the things you need to do, ever.
Having said that, there is a free defrag utility called
by iobit.com that will continuously defrag your hard
drives in the background so you never have to worry about them
My personal favorite, even
with the pinned tasks of W7 is
8start, a wonderfully versitile way to start programs and
group the shortcuts the way you want them grouped so you
remember where they are. 8start is a bit tricky to set up
at first but once you get the hang of it you'll fly free.
continue to use MS OFFICE 2003. The newer software (2007
and 2010) do not provide any features that I would use that I
can't do with 2003 so I'm not about to spring for the cost of
the newer packages. If you are not fortunate enough to
have access to earlier versions of Office I highly recommend the
FREE Open Office which
has all the features of MS Office AND is totally compatible with
option that you may find attractive is
Google Docs. It
is part of Google's cloud based office suite and includes
documents, spreadsheets and a drawing program. Google's office
products are particularly useful for collaborative projects.
another free and very useful tool is
Evernote. This helps
you organize your projects and helps you to remember things.
The best part is that it is totally portable and, being cloud
based, all your notes sync almost instantly on your Desktop,
Laptop and Android phone. Almost any device and any
platform is supported today so it is always with you and your
data is backed up. Even earlier versions of documents can
be retrieved from the cloud if you mess something up. The
only thing that would make this wonderful package better is if
they included the structure of ECCO (Later Ecco Pro), a
long forgotten aid to organizing your mind.
Just released is the new version of the FREE
Firefox which has also released an add-on to quietly
synchronize your bookmarks on all your devices; your
desktop, laptop even your phone. Never lose your links
again. Your bookmarks are safely in the cloud.
What's even better is that it also backs up your memorized
passwords, preferences, history and tabs as well. You will
have the same feature set on all your devices.
Here's an update for System Backup. I've
looked at a few of different options. Some claim to be
free, but they don't give you all the necessary software.
After looking at Symantec Save and Restore, Ghost and Acronis
True Disk Image, the latter has come out on top. It is an
easier interface to use and set up. You do have to know
what you are doing and make sure that the storage device has
enough space, a problem I'm encountering. Also don't
forget to make a current boot disk to use in case of a total
system crash where you need to restore everything.