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ClifNotesNewsletter041205

Clif Notes Newsletter          December 5, 2004
Reviews

 Grahics cPicture LE - viewing and working with your digital photos
I saw this program reviewed in the Lockergnome Windows Fanatics newsletter. I tried it and I don't think I've got any other digital photo software that's got quite as many great features. Easy to install, just unzip and run.
Website - Quote from Lockergnome
cPicture LE is for viewing and working with your digital photos. It offers support for thumbnail browsing, EXIF display, histogram view, as well as various features to resize, rotate, crop, and more. You can also remove red-eye effects, create an HTML gallery or picture index, and batch process images to perform selected operations on multiple photos at once. The program supports all popular image formats, and even the ability to view/convert various RAW formats as well (including Canon CR2), which is not often found in free image viewers. The interface is easy to use and provides access to the features with non-technical commands (I want to…) and a modern look. cPicture LE offers several other handy features like mouseover image zooms, lossless rotation, image slideshow, command line options, color profile support, and more. The program comes as a standalone executable, and does not require installation.

Editors FreeButtons.org - free web button/menu creator
This is a good piece of software just made for a fairly experienced webmaster.  If I'd been a newbie at this I would have had a tough time figuring out how to use the program. Once you do figure it out, it can give you an amazing variety of buttons and menus. When you are done you can easily export it to an html file. The author should really include some wizards to make it easier to use for the average person.
Website - Quote from the website
It's very simple to work with the program. You just change the graphic parameters of buttons such as 3D shape, lighting, texture, material, shadow, deformation. All other actions perform automatically by the program. Free Buttons creates professional quality images, generates a javascript that interacts with normal, mouseover, and click mouse events for rollover effect, and inserts the menu into your html page in a position you want buttons to appear. Ability to work with templates allows you to make your menus even faster.

 System Memtest86 - A Stand-alone Memory Diagnostic
Here's a great tool when you think your system memory (ram) might be going bad. I used the floppy disk installer tool but there's a CD based installer there also.
Website - Quote from the website
Memtest86 is thorough, stand alone memory test for x86 architecture computers. BIOS based memory tests are a quick, cursory check and often miss many of the failures that are detected by Memtest86.

 System NTest - the Nokia monitor test
This program will help you adjust your pc's monitor so that you can see all that you can see. Just download it and unzip it to a folder, then run the install.exe program.
Website - Quote from the website
This Windows program will guide you in setting the parameters, controls and adjustments of the monitor. It will also guide you on how to measure picture quality.

Grahics Photosnoop - find no-no pictures on your pc
I tried this out and I was amazed. Nope, I didn't find any bad pictures, but I found lots of pictures that I had no idea were on my pc. It even looks inside of zips files and browser caches if you want it to.
Website - alternate link - Quote from the website
I propose that, instead of trying the impossible job of blocking content, parents should keep a weather eye on what the family computer is being used for. Such deterrence is likely to be much more effective. My program scans disk drives and tries to find rude pictures. If it finds any, it will let parents know, and show them the pictures found, and tell them where it was found - giving the parents the ability (and responsibility) to deal with the situation.

 System RegmagiK - a registry editor for advanced users (special offer)
Earlier this week I received an "alert" from TightwadTech  and I found a cool new program I could get for free. A free activation code was offered for a limited time and I tried it out. It's a great program and it's better than the one I'm using now. It's smaller and easily installed. For those of you who aren't sure what a registry editor is, you can read about the Windows registry here. If any of you want to try out this software, Boris (the author) has offered everyone who reads my newsletter a chance at a free activation. Send an email to Boris and put the word "xanga_regmagik_2004" into the subject of the email.
Website - Quote from the website
RegmagiK is a Windows Registry editor for advanced users. Familiar regedit.exe user interface with unique enhancements like explorer shortcuts, fast search, and address bar with autocomplete make it the tool of choice for system administrators, software developers, QA and technical support professionals. It was tested on Windows 98, NT, 2000, XP, and Windows Server 2003.

  StationRipper - get songs from 100's of radio stations
Years ago, I tried a media player call WinAmp and I found a plugin for it called StreamRipper. Using StreamRipper I could tune into an internet radio station and record over 100 songs a night. I'd go through them the next day and keep the ones I liked. Now with StationRipper the interface for recording the songs has been made a bit easier to use. I haven't used the "chat" option in StationRipper but it sounds pretty cool. Naturally, the songs you take can only be for personal use and should never be offered on a file sharing network.
Website - Quote from the website (some of the features here are not available on the free version)
Record Shoutcast Audio and Video streams.
Records up to 300 streams at one time.
Buy the music you are ripping
Keeps track of the songs you've already recorded, only keeping the songs you don't already have.
Lets you easily find stations to record, via the StationRipperTM Portal, Shoutcast, or other web sites.  Or you can drag and drop from iTunes radio to start recording.
Keeps a list of the music and stations you've recorded, allowing easy playback and re-recording of stations.
Listen to any station being recorded with a single mouse click.
Ignore songs under a certain size.
Auto-record whatever was being recorded the last time you ran StationRipperTM.
Chat with other users, sharing what stations you are listening to.
Tips

 Security Website A Virus From The Dead - here's a tough sucker to get rid of
A few months ago, I infected myself by installing some supposed good anti-spyware. It was bad though. Very nasty and it taught me a new trick or two for removing viruses, spyware, and trojans. You see, what happens is that there are actually two or more "bad" files running and every time you remove one, it's evil buddies start it back up again. If you try to remove the autorun entries in the registry, they detect it and put it back in. The solution was to track all the bad guys down, then boot into safe mode to remove the files and the autorun settings. I used to call these bad guys "The Evil Twins", but I found out later that it's commonly called Lazarus. If you've got a virus, spyware, or trojan problem, let me know and I'll try to help you through it. You can reach me here.
Website - Quote from the website
This new virus is nicked named Lazarus, since it comes back from the dead. Since files are still on the computer that area related to the virus, this helps actually resurrect the virus from the dead. How people will delete this virus altogether is the question at hand.

 Help EMusic - Spybot S&D finds a new problem?
I updated my Spybot S&D on Friday December 3rd, 2004 and ran a scan. It found a new problem on my machine. It found EMusic.ico in C:Program_FilesEmusic folder. So what is it? I looked in the folder and it only had the single ico file that Spybot detected. "That's strange", I thought. An ico file is just an icon and isn't dangerous. I did a search in Google. I typed in "spyware emusic" and the first hit was Spybot S&D Home page. They added Emusic just two days ago. It turns out that this was a harmless icon file that was added to my system when I re-installed Windows with the HP operating system disks. In other words "FALSE ALARM". It was probably just part of an ad campaign from HP. It's been on my PC for years and I never knew it. Even if I had found a full blown copy of Emusic, it turns out that Emusic isn't really such a bad guy. They just hang around with the wrong crowd and they don't always ask you if you want to install them. Thank you Mr. Spybot for keeping me on my toes. I would rather deal with false alarms than the real thing. It's very important to keep your defender programs updated and scan with them on a regular basis.

Spybot S&D - Quote from the website

UPDATES
2004-12-01
Adware
+ DealHelper
Dialer
+ Axis
Hijacker
+ CoolWWWSearch.BadZoneMap + CoolWWWSearch.AboutBlank (2) + ShopAtHome + WOW Access + Crackspider + MyTotalSearchBar + Flashtrack Flashenhancer + CleverIEHooker.Jeired
Keylogger
+ Plog 1.1
Malware
+ AV Devil + Nirsoft + Web CPR-TopMoxie
Spyware
+ emusic + eZula Hot Text + n-Case (2) + SplashSpot + VX2.Favoriteman + HuntBar + Serial Thief + ProAgent 1.21 + WildMedia + AdRoarPlugin + CallingHome.biz
Trojan
+ C2 Media Ltd + W32.Bagle.AV + Windows AdTools + Hammer Binder Update + E-Gold + Comload + Klorin + Tequila Bandita 1.2 (2) + KStealth + Password Devil + FTP Center 1.3 + Spyblocs + BTV

 Internet IE Fix - try this when your browser messes up
Is Internet Explorer acting funny? Here's a good start at fixing it. If you try this program and IE is still not acting right you can always go into your Control Panel and repair IE. All you have to do is open Add/Remove Programs  and choose Microsoft Internet Explorer. Once you've got it selected, click the add/remove button and use the "Repair" option.
Website - Quote from MikesWhatsNews  03, 12, 2004
Internet Explorer Fix 

General purpose fix for Internet Explorer [Win 98/ME/2000/XP]
Internet Explorer Fix - is a general purpose repair utility for Internet
Explorer which repairs Internet Explorer by registering it's core DLL files
and through the INF file. Additionally if it detects Windows 2000/XP as the
Operating System, it runs SFC to restore missing or corrupt Windows system
files.
    o Registers the core modules of Internet Explorer.
    o Refreshes Internet Explorer using IE.INF method. (Optional)
    o For Windows 2000/XP: Initiates "SFC /Scannow". (Optional)
    o Repairs two important registry keys which are required to set IE as
the default browser
Cool Websites

 Help Allexperts.com - ask me anything
If you have a tough question, these guys are just begging for it.

Website - Quote from the website

Ask any question! Allexperts.com is the oldest & largest free Q&A service on the Internet
Pick a category and click on a volunteer's name to ask a question!
Thousands of volunteer experts are here to answer all your questions!

 Email Mailinator.com - give everyone your email address
Here's a email service that's really handy when you need it. Need to give someone an email address and you don't really trust them? Make one up and add "@mailinator.com to the end. Go to mailinator.com and pick up your mail. It will automatically be deleted in a few hours and nobody ever got your real email address. Very similar to another service at http://spam.la but the mail pick up site is easier on the eyes.

Website - Quote from the website

Welcome to Mailinator(tm) - Its no signup, instant anti-spam service. Here is how it works: You are on the web, at a party, or talking to your favorite insurance salesman. Wherever you are, someone (or some webpage) asks for your email. You know if you give it, you're gambling with your privacy. On the other hand, you do want at least one message from that person. The answer is to give them a mailinator address. You don't need to sign-up. You just make it up on the spot. Pick jonesy@mailinator.com or bipster@mailinator.com - pick anything you want (up to 15 characters before the @ sign).
 
Later, come to this site and check that account. Its that easy. Mailinator accounts are created when mail arrives for them. No signup, no personal information, and when you're done - you can walk away - an instant solution to one way spammers get your address. Its an anti-spam solution for everyone. The messages are automatically deleted for you after a few hours.

  Website SingingFish.com - search for media files on the internet
Here is a very good search engine just for audio and video files. I've heard that Google and Yahoo both plan to do the same thing in the future.
Website - FunnyVideo1 - Quote from the website
Singingfish audio/video search is a free service that's fast and easy to use.
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