BOOT CAMP 347 (12/10/04)
Shareware and Freeware part 5 --
THE final part of this
short series on free (and nearly free) software -- otherwise known as freeware
and shareware -- looks at a selection of tried and tested tools and utilities.
These are the odds and ends that Microsoft left out of Windows or major
applications, which can make your PC easier to use or help to solve problems
when things go wrong.
SPACEMONGER, freeware, 103kb,
RUNNING out of space?
Have you ever wondered how much room all of those applications and data files
are taking up on your hard disc drives or memory cards? Spacemonger will tell
you with a simple to understand colour-coded graphic display that shows exactly
what is stored on your PC and how much room it is consuming. Double click or
right click on a block to zoom in, show more details, open or
RESTORATION, freeware, 162kb,
HOW many times have you
deleted something on your PC by accident? Of course you can always retrieve
files from the Recycle Bin, provided it hasn’t been emptied. Even if it has all
is not lost and Restoration can recover deleted files after the bin has been
cleared. Restoration has another useful trick up its sleeve; it can also make
sure that sensitive that files you don’t want to be restored stay deleted. The
program is small, non-intrusive; it doesn’t even have to be loaded on your PC
and can be run from a floppy or USB pen drive.
REGSEEKER, freeware, 307kb,
REGULAR readers will
know that the Registry is the repository for configuration settings for Windows
and the programs installed on your PC. Over time it accumulates a great many
redundant entries, as programs are installed and removed. These can slow your PC
down or cause unexpected problems resulting in a corrupt Registry that can stop
Windows working altogether. Regseeker is a safe and easy to use Registry cleaner
tool that identifies unused and superfluous entries; you can then decide whether
or not to keep them. Deleted files are automatically backed up so they can be
restored in the event of anything going wrong.
EZBACK-IT-UP, freeware, 988kb,
HARD disc drives are now
incredibly reliable but it would be a huge mistake to rely on it and keep all of
your important data files in just one place. EZBack-It-Up is a fast and
efficient backup tool that copies all of your critical files to a separate
partition on your main drive or better still, to a second drive or CD-R
(formatted for UDF or packet-writing). It makes incremental backups, which means
it saves time by only copying and updating the files and folders that have been
created or modified since the last backup session. It has a built-in scheduler,
so backups can be carried out in the background at a time of your choosing and a
details of all the files copied are recorded in a permanent log.
RJH EXTENSIONS, freeware, 673kb,
OVER the years there
have been several worthwhile improvements to Windows Explorer but RJHextensions
fills in some of the remaining gaps, adding a raft of extra features. These
include the facility to print the contents of a folder, ‘shred’ files so they
cannot be recovered, encrypt files using the powerful Blowfish algorithm,
rename, duplicate or copy files, provide one-click access to a DOS window and
copy a file path to the Clipboard. Once installed the extra options are
displayed by right clicking on a file or folder.
CONVERT, freeware, 152kb,
IF you have ever wanted
to know how many Yottabytes there are in a Nibble or suddenly find that you need
to convert Kilopond-Metres to Dyne Centimetres or even Pennyweights to Grams
then you need this brilliant little program on your PC. Convert will instantly
calculate conversion values in over 20 categories including temperature, speed,
pressure, angles, area, power, acceleration, density, torque, flow, force and
light, to name just a few.
BELARC ADVISOR, freeware, 605kb,
WHAT’S under the bonnet?
You may already know such mundane things as your PC’s processor speed, memory
size and hard disc capacity but what about the make, model and capabilities of
your hard drive, CD-ROM or video adaptor?
Belarc Advisor scans your PC and displays, in an easy to understand
web-page format, the minutest details about your PC and all of the programs
stored on it, including most licence and registration codes. Clearly most of
this information is of little use or interest on a day-to-day basis but it could
prove invaluable to a service engineer attempting to diagnose a fault. Why not
use it to take a ‘snapshot’ of your system while it is running
PLEASE note that you install and use these programs
entirely at your own risk and we are unable to provide any help or support --
check the web sites for FAQs and troubleshooting tips. Don’t forget to backup
all of your important data before installing any new software and if you find
these programs useful please help the author or publisher to continue to develop
their product by paying the licence fee or making a small donation.
Next week – XP Safe Mode
Powerful cipher or encryption system used to scramble data so
that it cannot be read without an appropriate decryption key
USB PEN DRIVE
Tiny pocket-size memory module that plugs into a PC’s USB
port, used to transport data between PCs. Now available with capacities ranging
from 8Mb to a gigabyte or more,
1,208,925,819,614,629,174,706,176 bytes, since you asked…
TIP OF THE WEEK
WORD TOYS, freeware, 1.5mb, Word 2000, 2002, 2003
If you use Microsoft Word then you should definitely give
this interesting little utility a test drive. It’s actually a suite of more than
30 tools and enhancements that let you personalise the way Word looks and
operates. Highlights include a keyboard shortcut to accented characters, Double
Save (saves a document to your hard drive and any other nominated drive), Folder
Icon Manager, Favourite Everything -- customise your most frequently used
functions, Document Recall (quickly find any document you’ve worked on, up to a
month previously), Quick Numbering (numbers paragraphs in over 50 formats),
Speed Sort (change the order of paragraphs) and Out Of Office, which leaves a
message on your screen when you are away from your desk.