RandallS - Wed, 2010-03-10 12:44
Windows 7 Home Premium does not include file level encryption. This is limited to the more expensive (Professional and up) versions of Windows 7. While there are a number of freeware file encryption programs, I wanted one that worked as an Explorer extension for convenience and had both 32-bit and 64-bit versions. After looking around a bit, I discovered that Windows 7 and 64-bit support was still fairly rare. Fortunately, one of the better file encryption program, AxCrypt, had a beta version with Windows 7 and 64-bit support.
RandallS - Sat, 2010-02-13 15:52
I've used Winamp or Windows Media Player on my PC since the Dark Ages simply because they were familiar and were good enough. My wife is a bit more picky about sound quality (and has far better speakers to be picky with) and has recently changed to foobar2000 as the very nice-sounding application that came with her sound card has not been updated in years. foobar2000 recently released a version 1.0 and my wife thought it sounded better on her system than any other audio player she tried, including a number of commercial players.
RandallS - Wed, 2010-02-03 12:49
As I find the Windows Start Menu too crowded for easy use, I've been using True Launch Bar and Powerpro on Windows XP to modify the taskbar to start programs the way I like. Unfortunately, the Windows 7 task bar works much differently than in any other version of windows and my old reliables just don't work very well on my new Windows 7 box. After looking around, I found a freeware program that both looks nice and does the basic job I need done, even if it does not have all the bells and whistles I'm used to: 7stacks.
RandallS - Wed, 2009-11-11 16:47
While extra spaces usually aren't a problem when you are entering data by hand in Microsoft Excel, they often worm their way into data that import from other formats. Once in your spreadsheet they can be hard to find and they will often foul up your spreadsheet to the point it doesn't print -- or even work -- correctly. Manually finding these extra spaces at the beginning and/or end of items is a time-consuming and error-prone process.
RandallS - Tue, 2009-11-10 11:32
PDF files have become a standard way to send formatted documents that you do not want the recipient to be able to change. Unfortunately, the Adobe Acrobat, the commercial software designed to create PDF files is priced for businesses and individuals who have money to burn. Acrobat also has many features that post people will never use. Fortunately, there are many programs, including a good select of free programs, that will create PDF files without Acrobat. PDFCreator is one of the best of the free PDF creation programs.
RandallS - Mon, 2009-11-09 07:18
Google Reader is probably the most popular RSS Feed Reader around. It allows you to follow RSS news feeds from your favorite web site in one place. And you can access Google Reader from any computer. Some people, however, prefer to use a RSS Reader program on their computer as these programs generally provide features that online RSS Readers -- like Google Reader -- do not.
RandallS - Sun, 2009-11-08 10:01
If you are anything like me, you often need to launch multiple programs to do your work. For example, when I'm working on a web page I need my HTML editor, my browser, my photo editor, my text editor to use as a scratch pad, and I need to start my local web server and database server. It's a bit annoying to have to find each of these programs in my start menu (I don't do the hundreds of icons on my desktop bit) and start it.
Enter the freeware Lacuna Launcher.
RandallS - Sat, 2009-11-07 13:55
Abiword is a powerful free cross-platform word processor program with the features most people need with the bloat and complexity of all the features few people ever use. The focus of the latest 2.8x version of Abiword is on improved collaboration features.
Here are some of the new features:
Improved Collaboration support
RandallS - Fri, 2009-11-06 21:05
It's hard to beat Windows Live Skydrive from Microsoft with its 25 gigs of free remote storage. This beats any other free storage service I know of. However, it can be a bit of a pain to use as you have to go to the Windows Live Skydrive site in your browser to upload or download files.
RandallS - Wed, 2009-07-08 09:02
ActivateByNum adds task-switching hotkeys on XP and Vista -- like on Windows 7. You just press the Win key plus a number to switch to the nth program showing on your taskbar. For example, if your taskbar shows NotePad, Word, Firefox, and Excel in that order, pressing Win+1 would switch to Notepad, pressing Win+2 which switch to Word, etc. If you like to keep your hands on the keyboard, this little utility is very nice.
Operating System: Windows XP, Windows Vista