• If you are citizen of an European Union member nation, you may not use this service unless you are at least 16 years old.

  • Finally, you can manage your Google Docs, uploads, and email attachments (plus Dropbox and Slack files) in one convenient place. Claim a free account, and in less than 2 minutes, Dokkio (from the makers of PBworks) can automatically organize your content for you.



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Welcome to Clif Notes Newsletter

December 9, 2007



Hi Everyone.

Thanks for reading my newsletter. Each week, I will have freeware reviews, tips, tricks, news, and lots of cool websites for you to check out.

I hope you enjoy this week's letter. Be sure to write me for advice or yell at me for messing up.

Email me

Click here to chat while

visiting this newsletter!







Online Armor - top rated firewall and intrusion prevention

Notes from ClifNotes, Dec 2007, permalink Personal Firewalls


Last month I tried out two different free firewalls: AshampooFirewall and PcToolsFirewall. I had no problems with either one. One of the readers here pointed out that I was picking the wrong firewall to try out and that neither of those did well with leak tests. Based on the recommendations, I decided to try out one of the top rated firewalls, Online Armor.


I've been running OA for about 2 weeks now with only some minor adjustments. OA has some extra protection features that monitor email and web surfing so I didn't even install those options. I simply don't want any protection in those areas. It also included some intrusion prevention software that they call "Program Guard". After using that feature for a week or so, I turned it off too. I already use WinPatrol to guard me against programs trying to perform stealthy installs on me.


I've concluded that OA is a good firewall. It works well with my system without bogging it down. Whether or not you choose to install the extra protection is up to you. If you aren't sure if you need the extra protection, I'd say you probably do need it.


click to expand picture

Quote from the website

Online Armor Personal Firewall - the only free firewall in the world to pass 100% of leak tests out of the box. Online Armor is a powerful personal firewall, with HIPS and a host of other security features to keep your PC clear of infections and running smoothly.



The author's website was not available at the time of this review




Prevx CSI Free - a stand-alone malware scanner

Notes from ClifNotes, Dec 2007, permalink Anti-Virus Tools


I'm always on the look out for new small tools I can take with me to help fix computers. This is one of those tools that I may be adding to my thumb drive for emergencies. Since I don't have an infected PC to try it out on, I can't tell you how well it works.



I just talked with Tom at temerc.com. He let me know that this isn't a reliable product yet. It gives too many false positives. That doesn't mean that it's a rogue anti-malware app. It just means that Prevx needs to work on this one. I'll keep my eye on it for future use.


click to expand picture

Quote from the website

Prevx CSI is a powerful new security tool that will quickly and easily tell you if your PC has been infected by one of these new threats. It is easy to use and enabling you to check if your PC has active spyware or malware, and it takes less than two minutes. So why take the risk, check your PC now with Prevx CSI.


If you like Prevx CSI it is useful to keep on your PC or on a USB memory stick. Then you can use it as often as you like to check if your PC has been infected. Also, pass it on to your friends, that way we can all reduce the risk of our PCs infecting others.




Fire Uploader - Firefox extension for uploading images

Notes from ClifNotes, Dec 2007, permalink Browser Tools


Fire Uploader is a Firefox extension that let's you easily save images off the web and send them to your photo hosting site. I tried it out and I found it very easy to use, however, I use my photo hosting sites to display photos online and there was no easy way to get the image URLs so I could display them.


I am now using ImageBot instead. It's not as easy to use for uploading but it does make it much easier to display them here.



click to expand picture

Quote from the website

What is Fire Uploader?

As the name says, this firefox extension is an universal upload tool. It allows you to upload/download files from any website using a friendly interface. In this version, Box.net (1GB of free space), Flickr (photo viewing/sharing), Picasa (photo viewing/sharing), Youtube(Vidoes) are supported. You can upload videos to Youtube, upload/download/organize photos to Picasa, Flickr and Box.net. Next versions would support other websites like Google Videos, Webshots etc.




New England Snow Screen Saver

Notes from ClifNotes, Dec 2007, permalink Desktop Tools


Here's a nice winter themed screensaver for you. I have it installed and I like it.


click to expand picture

Quote from the website

This artistic screensaver created by Screen Saver Studio features snow falling gently in front of a house in New England while the song "Greensleeves" plays. New England Snow is a sure winner to bring out the Christmas spirit in everyone.




Flickr Uploadr - fast and easy photo uploads

Notes from ClifNotes, Dec 2007, permalink Photo Organizers


I don't use Flickr much, but it is a super place on the web. If you need to upload your personal photos or use pictures in a blog, this is definitely one of the best services.


I have always found the biggest chore to using image or photo hosts, is uploading your pics. The Flickr Uploadr makes this task a breeze so that you can spend more time sharing your photos instead of uploading them. Just drag and drop as many photos on the app as you want. Zoooom! Away they go!


click to expand picture

Quote from the website

You can download an installer (.exe) that allows you to publish a batch of photos into Flickr directly from your computer. Once you install the Uploadr, just drag and drop in your photos, add some tags, and you're done!

















Old Newsletter


I like to look back and see what I was thinking about. Here's another letter from the wayback machine.



















What free software do you need?

Notes from ClifNotes, permalink Windows Tips



So what do you need? Write it down below and I'll see if I can find it. If you know the answer to someone else's question, add your answer there.



Previous "What Do You Need" comments

Dec 02 2007 - Last issue

Nov 18 2007

Nov 11 2007

Nov 04 2007

Oct 28 2007

Oct 21 2007

Oct 14 2007

Sep 23 2007

Sep 16 2007

Sep 09 2007

Aug 26 2007

Aug 19 2007

Jun 29 2007

Jun 22 2007

Jun 15 2007


Search all the comments


Creating Photo Slideshow Movies

Notes from ClifNotes, Dec 2007, permalink Windows Tips


I recently read this article at "The Daily Download" blog which is hosted by Download.com. In the article the author suggested different software to take your photos and create a DVD slideshow that you could play on any DVD player. I thought it was an interesting article, but he offered no free solutions to create the DVDs.


After reading through the comments of the article, I finally found one enlightened person who offered his freeware solution to the problem.


from Copman

One you might like to try is Foto2Avi which will create an avi file, then use Avi2Dvd, DVD Flick, or WinFF all similar programmes. All of these are freeware - just google. For a bit of a dinosaur, not an expert or geek at this PC lark but for something simple these work for me.


I took Copman's suggestion to "google" the Foto2Avi and Avi2Dvd programs. I didn't like the top results I found but I finally spotted links to AfterDawn.com and I knew I'd found a good place to download them.


After a little research, I determined that the best way for me to create the avi movies would be to try out two tools I already had installed. I found out that Picasa and Windows Movie Maker would both do the job.


See these tutorials if you want to learn more.


How to Create a Picture Movie using Picasa

How to Make a Photo Slide Show With Music (with Windows Movie Maker)


I learned that Picasa was good for making the videos but had almost no options for adding sound or transitions. It's great for somebody who wants a simple way to create avi movies of their photos. It even has a "Gift CD" creation wizard that will publish a CD with slideshows and photos.


I really liked the features of the Windows Movie Maker which does allow you many more options including sound and video transitions. However, most folks with WinXP don't realize it's even installed on their PC. I'm not sure where it appears in the Start Menu but I found it here on my hard drive:


"C:\Program Files\Movie Maker\moviemk.exe"


I created a short video slide show using Windows Movie Maker using the following sources.

Wallpapers by GrafixEye



Song "Amblyopia" by Jimi Pocius



Windows Movie Maker creates a WMV file but it's no problem to convert it if you go to a website like MediaConvert.


I decided to upload it to teachertube.com so that I could display it here for you.



I don't have a DVD burner, so this article is really incomplete. However, if I had to recommend a way to burn the avi file, I'd have to tell you to try the DVD Flick first since it's an open source freebie.


Make sure to comment below if you have your own great way to create movie slideshows and burn them to DVD.















Internet Fixes Weekend Windup

tips from Gary at InternetFixes, Windows Tips


From Clif:

Gary at Internet Fixes continues to amaze me with hundreds and thousands of tips for your PC. Whatever your operating system, or how you use it, a visit to Gary's site will soon have you saying "So that's how you do this!".


Sign up for Gary's newsletter?

Weekend Windups are now available online




Last Mondays News Letter Tips


1. On my Laptop, Microphone Settings are Disabled. Whenever I double click on volume control, I cannot see microphone settings. Please guide me to enable microphone settings.




2. How can I Print a Page without the URL Path showing at Bottom of the Page? I got a new pc and now can't eliminate this URL when I print a web page. I am running Windows XP Pro.




3. Whenever I get an error with my Internet Explorer 6.0, a pop-up appears asking me if I would like to run Dr. Watson Debugger. Is this a legitimate program?




4. Double-click with Mouse on Windows XP. I used to be able to double-click on icons and get them to open or run automatically. Now I can't do that anymore, and have to click once and then on the drop-down menu, click "Open", to actually open the folder. However, that means that when I open a WinRAR folder or similar to run an application, I can't double-click on the application to let it run.




5. I had 2 sessions of Windows Explorer open the other day and I hit some Key Combination that arranged both windows on my screen evenly. Basically I had 2 windows explorer screens each taking up half of my screen. I cannot seem to make this happen again? Is there a key stroke (or command) that evenly arranges all active programs (windows) on the screen? I am using Windows XP.




6. I am using XP Home, Version 2002 with SP2 Firewall, also have Norton anti virus 2005 anti-spyware edition with firewall. I have read somewhere that it's best to use only one firewall, Is this correct? If so which one do you think would be best?




7. When I try and access 'Help and Support' I get an error message telling me Windows cannot open H & S and telling me to fix the problem by starting service named 'Help and Support'! I'd be very grateful for any help.




8. I need to find a way to Print Out The Results of ipconfig /all. When I press Print Screen I get no output. Have I overlooked something as I can remember doing this successfully in the past i.e. Windows 3.1




9. I'm not sure what I did but my URL address under my tool bar no longer appears and I'm not sure how to get it back. If I want to type in an address I can't I have to do a search to find the site. It's really frustrating. I'm sure the answer is simple but I can't seem to figure out how to get that URL section back under my tool bar. I know it must be a dumb question, If you can help I'd appreciate it. Thanks.




10. I prefer to see the lists of subdirectories and files in "list" or "detail" format rather than as icons of some sort, which seems to be the default setting on my computer. I always have to go change the way the info is displayed. How can I get Windows XP to present the data listed as I would like to see it, in non-iconic format?




Click The Link Below To Join My News Letter.


The Form At The Link Below Covers Both Monday and Wednesdays News Letter.




Download 1000 Of My Tips On Ebay!

Over 600 Windows XP Tips!

11/11/2007 Added 100 Vista Tips To The Download!




Function Keys F1 F2 F3 F4 F5 F6 F7 F8 F9 F10 F11 F12





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Last Wednesdays News Letter Tips


1. Run Pre-Vista Programs In Compatibility Mode.




2. Vista’s Startup Repair Tool Will Automatically Diagnose And Fix Startup Problems.




3. Clear Recent Items In The Vista Start Menu.




4. Run As An Administrator In Vista.




5. Create A System Restore Point.




6. Change Windows Mail Preview Pane View In Vista.




7. Turn Off The Windows Sidebar.




8. Turn Off The Vista User Account Control (UAC).




9. Checking System Memory With Windows Memory Diagnostics Tool (Vista).




10. Turn Off System Restore In Vista.




Hardware And Software Vendor Phone List, A-K




Hardware And Software Vendor Phone List, L-P




Hardware And Software Vendor Phone List, Q-Z







How Do I Prevent CHKDSK From Running Every Time My PC Starts






IF01766 Easy enable real Administrator Account in Windows Vista Home Premium




IF01767 Keep User Account Control active, but get rid of annoying popups in Vista.




IF01768 Transfer User Accounts, System Settings from XP to Vista.




IF02011 Map a Network Printer In Windows XP.




IF02006 Using The Windows XP Event Viewer Log.










Comments last week

Thanks to everyone who commented on the articles last week. You gave me more ideas and some good advice.



NexusRadio - streaming audio player and recorder •

ReminderCube - nice calendar and reminder plus much more •

ClipMagic - a good free clipboard manager •

Mozilla Prism - web apps on your desktop •

ProjectForum - free collaboration server on your PC •



Download SnagIt & Camtasia for Free

Vista Will Die in Four Years

Windows Live Calendar is now available (beta) •

5 Tools to Make Windows XP Look Like Vista

Yahoo! has new version of Widgets



20 Fantastic Open Source Downloads

DVDVideoSoft - full of free video software •
















CoolSites Newsletter this week


Here are a 6 links (out of dozens) from Mark's CoolSites Newsletter. Be sure to visit his site and see the rest of his links this week.


November 30 2007 COOLSITES Newsletter # 141 by Mark Donaldson


Quote from the website

COOLSITES is a list of safe, fun, useful, informative and just plain cool websites and programs that are FREE, FREE and FREE. All of the programs and websites I list are free. If I list anything that is so good but isn't free I will list the price with it.




Have some fun - play Winterbells


Last year about this time, I found a cool flash game to pass some time. Click this link to try it out.


Move the bunny left and right. Keep moving up by jumping on the Bells. The longer you stay up the higher your score.



Snow Globe - shake'me up and hear the screams


An interactive online snow globe with a fun script. Check it out, it's worth a chuckle!






Cownter - see how many surfers are on the same page

Notes from ClifNotes, Dec 2007, permalink Web Service


If the author of a site or blog adds this java script service, you'll be able to see how many people are looking at the same page as you are. I will not use this tool here. I already have way too much stuff loading in the page. If you've noticed that, I'm sorry. I'm just a web tool junkie. It's hard to kick the habit.


click to expand picture

Quote from the website

Cownter is a service that allows website visitors to see how many people are currently looking at different pages within the site. When a visitor mouses over a LINK, a small bubble pops up telling them how many people are currently on that page.


With Cownter, visitors can quickly tell how many people are reading a particular article on a news site or how many people are looking at a product on a shopping site.




Draw Anywhere - work on group drawings online

Notes from ClifNotes, Dec 2007, permalink Web Service


I have not tried this yet, but I wanted to share it with you. Let us all know if you try it by commenting below.


Quote from the website

DrawAnywhere is an online diagramming website, where you can draw, modify and share flowcharts and other diagrams, with the look & feel of a desktop application. It runs on any browser with Flash 9 installed. There is no need to download and install any custom software. It runs entirely on the web, and thus it is an always-on-access-anywhere solution. It meets all your diagramming needs without installing, maintaining and purchasing expensive software.







Websites I've visited recently


Have you seen any cool websites you want to share with us?











SnapFiles.com - new and updated freeware

Source - http://snapfiles.com/freeware





News from Sarah in Tampa

Source - http://sarahintampa.com




Security news from Malware Advisor

blog by TeMerc Internet Countermeasures, source

Infected? Go to http://temerc.com for help




A view from CyberNirvana


CyberNirvana: Zia's blog about the web and web technology.




























Get Gmail! and Get Firefox!


You need a free 2.8 GB Gmail account to access many of the cool features at Google. After more than two years in beta testing Gmail is open to the public. Just go to http://gmail.com and sign up for an account.



I think Gmail works best in the awesome Firefox browser. It's free, easy to use, and it's way more secure than Internet Explorer. My favorite thing to do is to customize Firefox so that it does much more than IE ever could. You can select new button controls for your toolbars, install extensions to add new features, or change the look of your browser with themes - the way Firefox looks and works is under your control.


Get Firefox!


Chatting at FreewareWiki



Now you can chat with anyone visiting a website by using Gabbly. To see who's gabbing at this website, click here.





Find out more about Gabbly.com





Frapper - you people live all over the world!

Wow! Over 800 people and still growing! I invite all of you to record your locations on this map. You can include as little or as much information as you wish. I think you'll enjoy seeing yourself there.


Here's a small look at my frapper map.



Write your own review


I get many of the reviews in the newsletter from the readers. You don't have to be a genius or computer guru. Just answer a few questions and send me a review. I'll probably put you in the newsletter.


What do you have to say?


Just tell me what article you are talking about and leave me your comment.



Have fun and surf safely.



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