Friday, 29 June 2012

Microsoft .NET Framework Repair Tool

For Microsoft to build a repair tool, things must have gone wrong.  If like me, you've had to fight with problematic .NET installations, give this handy repair tool a try first. Half the Office365 issues I've had have been .NET related. See: http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

FREE Early Warning of Hard Drive Failure

Acronis Drive Monitor tells you everything you need to know about the health of your computer hard drives.  Receive alerts via email, together with weekly status reports, so if disk failure is immiment, you get a heads up and a chance to save your data. See: http://www.acronis.com/homecomputing/products/drive-monitor/

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

FREE Online Meetings

A Cisco WebEx Basic account is free.  Hold online meetings with up to 3 people, with desktop and document sharing.  Ideal for small training sessions or for remote users with iPads. See: www.webex.com

Friday, 22 June 2012

Adobe Creative Cloud Subscription


Get the equivalent of Adobe Creative Suite 6 Design & Web Premium as a subscription for a cash flow friendly £46.88/month instead of the usual £1700 purchase price.  If you have any existing Adobe CS3 or later products you can get the first year for £27.34/month, see: http://www.adobe.com/products/discount-software-coupons.html

Thursday, 21 June 2012

FREE Remote Access Of Your PC or Mac

For years now I have been using LogMeIn to remotely access and troubleshoot computers all over the country.  The main thing missing is 'file transfer' but this is less of an issue these days.  See: https://secure.logmein.com/UK/products/free/

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

FREE Alternative To Adobe Illustrator

I use a vector graphics program called Inkscape to create all sorts of scalable logos and graphics. Design it once and export out to any size as required. It's available for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux. See: http://inkscape.org/

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Email Files Up To 2GB

I use a yousendit.com Pro Plus subscription to email files up to 2GB together with unlimited cloud storage.  There are various deals to save 33% on a Pro Plus subscription for only $99.99/year.  See:  http://www.yousendit.com

Monday, 18 June 2012

Path Too Long Utility

Extemely long file paths in Windows can give you a real headache, causing backups to fail and users to get 'file name you specified is not valid or too long' errors. What started out as a utility to locate and remove these files, has evolved to be able to delete all sorts of troublesome files and folders that Windows cannot access. See http://www.pathtoolong.com/

Sunday, 17 June 2012

Important iPad & iPhone Settings

If any of your children use your iPad or iPhone to play games, then it is extremely important to disable In-App Purchases.  Many FREE games are financed by optional In-App Purchases, and even if your child does not know your Apple ID password, they can still rack up a huge bill if you have just downloaded the game in question.  Go to Settings, General, Restrictions, and set In-App Purchases to OFF.  I also turn off Deleting Apps with young children.  For more detailed instructions see: http://www.itproportal.com/

Saturday, 16 June 2012

25% off O&O DiskRecovery 7 Pro


When people ask me to recover their data from a dead or damaged hard drive, I turn to O&O DiskRecovery Pro to see what can be salvaged.  PC Adviser magazine has a link to purchase Version 7 for $74.95 / £55.99 - see: http://pcadvisor.co.uk/downloads/3249213/oo-diskrecovery-71-professional-64-bit/ for the new Version 8 use coupon code: SOFTCLUB to get 20% OFF

Friday, 15 June 2012

Sophos Anti-Virus for Mac Home Edition is FREE


Just because you have a Mac, it doesn't mean you are safe from viruses, there's just a lot less of them, for now that is!  Why take the risk when Sophos is giving their Mac anti-virus for FREE. See: http://www.sophos.com/en-us/products/free-tools/sophos-antivirus-for-mac-home-edition.aspx 

FREE IT management software

Solarwinds has over 25 IT management and network monitoring utilities available for FREE at the end of their downloads page. See: http://www.solarwinds.com/downloads/

Thursday, 14 June 2012

FREE Virus Removal Tool

SOPHOS has recently updated it's free virus removal tool, claiming 27% found malware missing by existing anti-virus as well as being 20% faster. Give it a try at http://www.sophos.com/en-us/products/free-tools/virus-removal-tool.aspx

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

FREE Windows PDF Printer

Create PDF documents from any Windows application using the Bullzip PDF Printer. Single installer and FREE for personal and commercial use up to 10 users.

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Orphans Remover

Windows shortcuts that no longer work (known as invalid or orphaned shortcuts) can cause delays on Windows machines.  Use the freeware Orphans Remover utility to find and remove them.  (note - only use with 32bit machines)

Apple MacBook Pro comparison chart

The new Apple MacBook Pro Retina laptops are brilliant, in the same way that a Mercedes car is, compared to a Ford. Use this regularly updated comparison chart to compare the whole Apple laptop range to help you decide: MacBook Pro Comparison (updated March 2015)

Sunday, 10 June 2012

Open Microsoft Project Files for FREE

Gantter is a FREE web-based project management tool. Can open Microsoft Project files and integrates with Google Drive. See: http://gantter.com/
GanttProject is a free open source project scheduling application that can import and export Microsoft Project files. See: http://www.ganttproject.biz/

FREE Piriform Utilities

Piriform has been making great free utilities for years. I always run CCleaner before a routine virus scan. See http://www.piriform.com

Friday, 8 June 2012

Microsoft Fix It

If your Windows computer is having issues, check here first for the FREE Microsoft Support automated solutions to many common problems.  See: https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/2970908/how-to-use-microsoft-easy-fix-solutions

Manipulate PDF files for FREE

PDFsam is an open source project to split, merge, rotate and reorder adobe pdf files. The basic version is free, though the enhanced version is available for a donation, starting at $1. See: http://www.pdfsam.org/

Thursday, 7 June 2012

FREE Firewall Test

Test if you are really protected by your firewall for FREE with the online ShieldsUP! tool at www.grc.com

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

FREE Adobe Photoshop Training Resources

Learning to use Photoshop to an advanced levels just need your time, not money:

Design Festival is a massive website providing daily tutorials, tips, advice and inspiration for designers, see: http://designfestival.com/
Independent Adobe Photoshop tutorials, with topics for Buttons, Designing, Drawing Techniques, Photo Editing, Photoshop Basics, Special Effects, Text Effects & Web Layout. See: http://www.adobetutorialz.com/
Adobe's own Photoshop training videos and tutorials, see: http://tv.adobe.com/product/photoshop/
Julieanne Kost's Blog featuring indepth tutorials, training, techniques and shortcuts for working with Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom. See: http://blogs.adobe.com/jkost/photoshop-training-videos

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

FREE Online Backup

I've been using iDrive.com as a backup solution for years. Monthly business accounts start at $9.95 for 100GB to $79.95 for 1000GB (1TB). A 5GB account is free, 12GB if you agree to share your contacts. You can also download free iPhone and iPad apps to backup contacts and more. The best feature is the Continuous Data Protection (CDP) which automatically backs up files under 50MB as you work. See: www.idrive.com

Monday, 4 June 2012

Standalone Virus Scanners

I use Trend Micro's free HouseCall on demand online scanner as a 'second opinion' sweep of any system I suspect may be infected. Every PC I've encountered with a virus had some form of antivirus software installed, which give an all clear after a scan.  Unlike some online scanners, HouseCall will attempt to remove any malware it finds.  See: http://housecall.trendmicro.com
Other alternatives are the Microsoft Safety Scanner and ESET Online Scanner

Sunday, 3 June 2012

Get paid for iPad and iPhone apps for FREE

Throughout the year lots of paid iPad apps have the their price reduced (often to free) during special days and various US holiday.  EA Games, Gameloft and many others normally reduce app prices during Thanksgiving, Easter, Independence Day, etc.  Also many new games are free when first released to build up rankings. Here are 4 of the best tools for finding paid for apps for free:

AppZapp AppShopper AppMiner Appsfire

You can also search for free apps from any computer at: http://appshopper.com/ipad/prices/free/

BgInfo showing Dell service tag

Download a customized Sysinternals BgInfo configured to show the Service Tag of a DELL computer here. Requires BgInfo.exe from: http://technet.microsoft.com