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Friday, December 28, 2007

Long Time between Postings

Sorry all, it's been a long time since I've been able to post. Both Work and School have kept me extremely busy. I'm going to try post again on a much more regular basis.

Lately in my spare time, I've been trying to learn more about network/computer security and protecting a network from attack. There's some scary stuff out there. Best tip is to keep your windows systems patched quickly and keep your personal firewall's on at all times.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Remote Desktop Support Apps.

Here's a few I've been hearing about... even have free options...



Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Recent - Favorite Podcasts I listen to

I've switched up my weekly podcast listening quite a bit. Now I've been routinely listening to:

Security Now! with Steve Gibson
Net at Nite with Amber MacArthur
Windows Weekly with Paul Thurrott
The Mike Tech Show
Geek News Central Podcast
Twit TV
The Tech Guy

Give them a listen... I learn quite a bit.

Another Personal Wiki!

Here's another personal wiki (pmwiki) I just heard about. Heard Leo Laporte recommending it to some one on his tech guy podcast.

Haven't posted anything in a while!

Wow, it's been a while. I haven't posted anything. Guess I've been extremely busy. Hope to post more often as I come across more and more things.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Easy to Install / Use Personal Wiki

Here's a link to an easy to install personal wiki named "instiki".

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Good little audio/video player

VLC player

Fast and Free Adobe Reader

Tired of Adobe reader taking a long time to start up or the constant push down of large updates just to read a file. Try Foxit Reader

Free FTP client

FileZilla FTP

Great Free Antivirus programs

Avast! Home Edition

AVG Free Edition

AntiVir Personal Addition

Get detailed information about your XP System: SIW

SIW gives detailed information about your computer properties and settings, detailed specs for: Software, Hardware, Network, Tools, and Real-time monitors. SIW is a standalone utility that does not require installation.

Another great free utility built into Windows for diagnosing whats starting up

Another great built in tool is to use the System Configuration Utility that comes with Windows XP. To get to it, go to the Start menu and select Run. In the Run box, type "msconfig" (without the quotation marks) to start the utility.

Diagnostic tools to help decipher XP issues: Hijackthis

Hijackthis is a great utility I've used for years. It helps display what programs start up when you turn on your computer. You can download it by going to:

Recently on the "Mike Tech Show - Podcast - #132 - 07-07-07", he provided two useful links that help analyze log files from hijackthis. Simply cut and paste the output of the log file into the site and it will give you helpful info about what it sees.

Link 1:
Link 2:

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Keeping track of the free space on your computer

Here's a free program recommended by Steve Gibson for for keeping track of the free space on your computer. SpaceMonger Free Edition.

Free Web site with real domain name?

This is interesting...Stumbled across this recently while surfing the internet. Microsoft is offering your own professional web site for Free (including domain name / web hosting / 500mb of space / email accounts.) I'll have to give it a try and see how it works.

The unfortunate part is you have to use Internet Explorer.

Monday, June 4, 2007

Better VNC - Remote Control

Here's a better VNC... UltraVNC

Use your Gmail for 2gb of free on-line storage

Use your Gmail for 2gb of free on-line storage with this firefox plugin... "getgspace"

Secure Wi-fi surfing

Combine "Freeproxy" with "Hamachi" and you can securely surf the web from a public wi-fi location. Freeproxy runs on your home computer along with Hamachi (virtual vpn see my earlier posts.)

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Evernote - Great Organizer of Random Items

EverNote is an intuitive note management application that gives you a single place for the easy input, organization and quick retrieval of all types of notes and content clippings. With EverNote you can conveniently capture and quickly find typed memos; excerpts from Web pages, emails, documents; passwords, phone messages, To-Do's, brainstorms, sketches, snapshots, and more.

I've installed it on my work notebook and have found it pretty useful for keeping track of notes, links to emails and documents in one spot.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Blink - The Ultimate Security protection for your Windows System

Just heard (Security Now episode 91 w/Steve Gibson Podcast) about what seems to be the best software for protecting your Windows Desktop System... The company name is eEye Digital Security. Their product "Blink" builds all of the necessary protection layers into a small form factor package. It blocks and remove viruses, spyware, worms, trojans, etc... It acts as a firewall/IDS/patch/cfg. reminder. It even will provide protection from unknown "0-day" exploits.

They offer a 1 yr free subscription to their product (after 1 year it only costs $22.00.)

Their site is

I'll be giving this a try on my own home PC... will let you know what I think... But if Steve Gibson likes it, its usually a good thing!

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Broadcast your own Video/Audio - UStream

Broadcast yourself via Video and Audio... UStream

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Free Antivirus software - Avast

Heard about this free anti virus software call Avast that was simple to install, easy to use, easy to update. It's not open source, however it is free if you register and updates are published very frequently.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Cool Application Launch bar - RocketDock

Hey, I just checked this out "RocketDock"(downloaded to my home PC.) This thing is really cool. Try it out....

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Other things to investigate

Rockitdock / SMEServer

Dynamic DNS

If your like me, I have a DSL with an IP address that is subject to change at anytime. Here's a site that allows you to create a DNS entry that gets updated with your information.

Dynamic Network Services, Inc. is a network services company known for its free DynDNS dynamic DNS service.

It looks promising if you want to host your own web server or even if you set up your own home vpn.

They have a four step easy process to get started with your first Dynamic DNS host:

* Step One: Create an Account
* Step Two: Create a Dynamic DNS Host
* Step Three: Install an Update Client
* Step Four: Configure your Network

Check it out at

Let me know what you think?

Freeware "Spinrite" type software

Ran across this today on the "Mike Tech Show" Podcast. A product named "MHDD" which is a completely free low-level disk diagnostic/repair utility. Haven't tried it out yet, however sounds good.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Universal Media (audio/video) transcoder - Open Source

Media Coder

Heard about this today... haven't had a chance to check it out yet, but seems like a great program to transfer anything media from one format to another. It's licensed under the GNU Open source licensing

Friday, March 9, 2007

Making a ringtone from any MP3 file

Heard about this... not sure if it works... I may give it a try... (getting tired of hearing my same old Nextel generic ring tone, but didn't want to pay any thing for a new one.)

Make a ringtone from any MP3 file?

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

DemocraKey - Safe Computing away from your system

Heard about this today while listening to the Globalgeek podcast #41. Haven't had a chance to try this out yet, however, it sounds interesting. It can load on a USB drive or even an IPOD/MP3 player.

A DemocraKey is a portable piece of software that works on any computer. Just walk up, plug in a DemocraKey, and you can be assured your files are much safer, your computer is better protected while browsing the web, and nobody will be able to tell which site you’re visiting.

For more info goto

Monday, March 5, 2007

Windows WiFI Wireless Adhoc connections by default

On Episode 81 from Security Now... I Learned about "FreePublicWiFi" entry that gets propagated (I've actually seen this before) / Wireless Ad hoc connections by default

Windows XP's "zero configuration WiFi" system defaults to the almost-never-useful and always-potentially-dangerous mode of connecting to non access point WiFi devices in so-called "Ad Hoc" mode. This has potentially serious security consequences. This is an insecure default which SHOULD be changed on every XP-based WiFi machine.

See Notes for How to remove..

This episode also has some great info about Hard Drive failures...

Saturday, March 3, 2007

Favorite Podcasts

Thought I would just provide a list of the podcasts I listen to each week:

SecurityNow (Leo Laporte/Steve Gibson.)
FreshUbuntu (Halem)
Linux Reality
GlobalGeek Podcast
The Linux Action Show
Ubuntu Podcast
Linux Install Podcast

Favorite Linux Distribution

My favorite Linux distro so far is Ubuntu Linux. Check it out at You can download a copy at here.

VPN Tunnel - Anywhere

Recently I learned about a great product that allows one to create an encrypted VPN tunnel anywhere (even through existing firewalls.) You can create virtual private networks where multiple computers can be attached (ala, install vnc and then use the new vpn connection to remotely control another system without even needing to open ports on your firewall.) There are many things you can do with this.

The product's name is "Hamachi" (you can find this at I first stumbled upon this while visiting/listening to a Podcast from Episode 37 "remote domination". At first I was a little skeptical about how secure it was... I tried it out anyway on a few sandbox systems I have (vmware instances) and was surprised about how fast it was to sign-up and then connect.

Later, as I was listening to an older episode of Security Now with Steve Gibson, he do was impressed with this product. He went on to say how he was an early tester of the product and had spoken with the developer on how it was constructed. Steve felt that the product was developed with the right technology to provide truly private connections. See episode #18 and 19.

Give it a try and let me know what you think or how you used it?

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Interesting Web Site - Can Google Hear Me?

I ran across an interesting web site. It is a current adventure of a young guy who wants to pitch a new idea for Google. It's interesting to see how much support he has gained on the internet though posts, etc... Check it out if you get a chance.

Easy to use Linux Distributions

In my study of Linux, I have found that each distro will typically have what's called a live cd (which is a bootable cd rom that will run the entire Linux OS from the CD.) This way you can try linux without ever having to install it or disturb the information on your existing hard drive. The easiest one, (one that most of the common proprietary items are already enabled) is PCLinuxOS. You can find it by clicking this link