Archive for the 'software' Category

Online Backup Review, Part 2

Monday, January 12th, 2009

Since my initial Mozy backup and review, I discovered that Mozy wasn’t performing incremental backups of modified files. Since I backup several large Ultra Recall database files that change frequently, this makes incremental backups painfully slow. It turns out that rather than comparing the new and old file contents and uploading differences at the block [...]

Worry-Free Off-Site Backup for the 21st Century

Wednesday, December 31st, 2008

Anyone with important data on their computer needs a good backup strategy. Hard drives fail and catastrophes do occur, so both on-site and off-site backups are important. Off-site backup used to be a real pain. One way is to store a tape or DVD backup in a safe deposit box, but keeping it up-to-date is [...]

LaunchAssist: Improving Application Launchers Everywhere

Thursday, November 15th, 2007

None of the popular launcher applications, nor Windows itself, do a very good job of integrating launching vs. activating an already-running application. LaunchAssist is a little utility I wrote to improve this situation. It works with most application launchers as well as the Windows Start Menu, Run dialog, Explorer, etc. To install, download it here, [...]

The Zen Of Windows Application Launching, Part 2

Monday, October 29th, 2007

Several categories of Windows application launchers have evolved over the past several years. In this post, I’ll look at the best and most popular products in each category. I’m only going to mention products that are either quite stable or that have been updated recently. Auto-Config Products in this category typically provide a polished GUI, [...]

Review: AB Commander

Monday, June 4th, 2007

The built-in Explorer application in Windows is rather wimpy, and every power user soon looks for a decent replacement. I looked at dozens of alternatives before settling on AB Commander, a dual-pane Explorer replacement. AB Commander’s dual-pane view suits me well, since I often need to deal with two folders at a time, but rarely [...]

The Zen Of Windows Application Launching, Part 1

Thursday, March 22nd, 2007

Launching and switching between applications are two very common activities when using Windows. Keyboard aficionados will naturally seek to minimize the work involved in such common tasks. For launching applications, Windows provides the Start Menu (accessed from the keyboard via the Windows key or Ctrl+Esc), the Quick Launch toolbar (Win+Tab, Tab), desktop shortcuts (Win+D), and [...]

Review: TouchCursor

Thursday, December 28th, 2006

As an avid keyboarder, one thing that has always slowed me down is having to move my hands to reach for the navigation keys (arrow keys, home, end, page up/down, etc.). Methods to reduce the problem are available (for instance, space bar scrolling in browsers, special navigation modes in editors like vi/vim, etc.), but they [...]

IE7 Revisited

Monday, November 6th, 2006

My initial reaction to IE7 was positive, but it quickly soured. Then I happened upon a way to make IE7 look like IE6 by running %WINDIR%\IE7\iexplore.exe rather that %ProgramFiles%\Internet Explorer\iexplore.exe. Now that the final version of IE7 has been released, I decided to install it again to try out this technique, and sure enough, it [...]

Review: Windows Vista (First Look at RC2)

Tuesday, October 31st, 2006

I recently installed Windows Vista RC2 (Build 5744) on a secondary partition of my main computer. The installation was very smooth (whereas installing RC1 on my AMD Athlon 64 X2 with NVIDIA nForce RAID array was painful and LAN access was atrociously slow). Out of the box, it recognized all my hardware except the SoundBlaster [...]

Review: Bloglines

Monday, October 16th, 2006

Blogs (RSS feeds) are all the rage these days. I’ve found that while there is some good information to be gleaned from blogs, the signal-to-noise ratio tends to be quite low. And manually monitoring dozens of feeds quickly becomes very wearisome. RSS reader applications were invented to monitor your feeds for you, allowing you to [...]