Wednesday, 31 October 2012

FREE eBooks For Microsoft Technologies

Dell are offering a handy Windows 8 for Dummies, Pocket Edition eBook for FREE in return for some contact details. Luckily, you can ask them not to contact you though. See:

Microsoft Press has quite a large collection of FREE eBooks (65+) now, available in a variety of formats (7 are available for FREE on the Amazon Kindle store too) for the full list see:

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Updating A Windows 7.5 Phone

I had intermittent issues when I first got my Samsung GT-I8350 Windows 7.5 mobile phone. They were fixed though once I installed the Microsoft Zune software and updated the phone by going to SETTINGS > PHONE > UPDATE. See:

Monday, 29 October 2012

FREE PowerShell Plus v4.7 IDE

Windows Powershell is like Marmite, you either love it or hate it. This FREE Powershell IDE with pre-loaded scripts and built in learning center can make your admin tasks easier. See:

Friday, 26 October 2012

FREE Microsoft Virtual Labs

Not having access to the right software is no longer a barrier to learning with the FREE Microsoft Developer Network Virtual Labs. Using their Hyper-V virtualization and remote desktop technologies, you get to use the latest software without having to install anything other than a plugin. See:

Thursday, 25 October 2012

FREE Portable Apps Suite

There is a lot more to portable apps than not requiring to be installed. The FREE PortableApps Platform lets you organise your files and programs, with built-in updaters and App Store. Use it to create an 'in case of emergency' USB memory stick, full of your important files and the programs to edit them. See:

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Add Windows Media Player to Windows 8

Did you know that Windows Media Player is not installed by default in Windows 8, instead you have to manually download and install it. See:

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Free PC Diagnostics Tool

The antivirus company ESET have a FREE standalone diagnostics tool called SysInspector for all versions of Microsoft Windows. Features a handy sliding filter to help identify issues. See:

Monday, 22 October 2012

Google Apps Sync for Microsoft Outlook

If your work email has moved to Google Apps, it doesn't mean you have to give up using Outlook. Use this utility to easily connect your email to Outlook. (This does not work with Gmail, requires Google Apps for Business or Education) See:

Friday, 19 October 2012

Kaspersky Lab's Blog

Kaspersky Lab have a really informative blog full of videos and other tips and advice. Even if you don't use their antivirus software, it's worth a look. See:

Thursday, 18 October 2012

FREE Office Suites

Choosing a FREE office suite used to be easy, you downloaded OpenOffice. But when Oracle bought Sun a large chunk of the OpenOffice development team broke away and started LibreOffice. Oracle then gave OpenOffice to Apache, and so now we have two branches of the original OpenOffice to chose from.

For LibreOffice version 4.0 see:
For OpenOffice version 3.4.1 see:

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Recover Microsoft Product Keys

If you ever have to reinstall or upgrade Microsoft Windows or Office, locating a hard to read sticker somewhere at the back of your computer is a major headache. Instead run this FREE tool (you don't even have to install it) to see all your Microsoft product codes. See:

Monday, 15 October 2012

Play All Popular Audio & Video Formats

Codecs are needed for decoding audio and video formats. Without the correct codec to match a video file type, you cannot play the video. So if you come across a video format that you cannot play, try installing the FREE K-Lite Codec Pack for MS Windows. See:

Friday, 12 October 2012

FREE Cloud Based Collaboration

FREE for up to 5 users with 1GB storage.
FREE for up to 20 users with 5 workspaces with 20MB storage each. See:
Enterprise Social Network, the Basic Network is FREE.
Google Sites via Google Apps. FREE for up to 10 users with 5GB storage. See:

Thursday, 11 October 2012

Premium Cloud Based Email Systems

Here are what I consider to be the three main choices for premium paid for hosted / cloud email. I happen to use all three of these email systems myself daily and each has it's own pros and cons. All 3 include spam and virus filtering as standard and will link to your smartphone.

Microsoft Office 365
Based on Exchange, Sharepoint and Lync with 25GB mailboxes at $8 per month. Basically corporate email, without the hassle. The $20/month version includes a full license of Office Professional and email archiving. See:
Google Apps for Business
Gmail without adverts, 24/7 support and a 25GB mailbox for $50/£33 per year.  Includes all the Google suite, Docs, Drive, Sites, etc. They recently started offering monthly subscriptions at $5/£3.30 per user. See:
Yahoo Mail Plus
I originally started paying $19.99/£11.99 a year just to not have any adverts on Yahoo's unlimited storage email service. Your account will never expire, together with live support, mail forwarding and disposable addresses. See:

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

How To Increase Your Online Security eBook

The internet can be a dangerous place (especially for your bank account). A little bit of background knowledge of the dangers though, will lower your chances of becoming a victim of an online scam. For the price of a coffee, my easy to read eBook offers practical steps to increase your online security and help you spot the scams and tricks used by the criminals. Available from the Amazon Kindle Store or see:

Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Virus Rescue Disk

If your computer is completely unusable due to a virus infection, then you need to reboot with another operating complete with built-in antivirus. Many of the antivirus companies have created this a quick package to download. You just need access to another computer to put the Rescue Disk onto a USB stick or CD. See:
Kaspersky Rescue Disk
Sophos Bootable Anti-Virus
Bitdefender Rescue CD
AVG Rescue CD

Monday, 8 October 2012

Cerberus Anti-theft For Android

Losing your Android smartphone or tablet (whether by theft or carelessness) doesn't have to be a nightmare. Cerberus gives you all the tools to help you locate your phone and stop unauthorized use, including remote control (even via sms) or remote wipe. While Cerberus is not free, it lets you manage up to 5 devices, so the $4 lifetime cost is extremely low for piece of mind. Available from Google Play or Amazon Appstore, see

Friday, 5 October 2012

Computer Tracking Software

Having your laptop, tablet or smartphone stolen is a nightmare. Track your stuff for $5 a month with the Prey anti-theft solution for up to 3 devices. From the online control panel, the system allows you to track, lock down and grab screenshots and webcam images. Obviously you need to have it installed before something is stolen. Works on Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS & Android. See:

Thursday, 4 October 2012

Go Back In Time With Any Website

The Wayback Machine is a FREE internet archive of over 150 billion web pages archived from 1996 to a few months ago. Easy to use, just enter a website, then select from the archived dates available. See:

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Check Anything To Do With DNS

MxToolBox is where I go to check anything to do with internet domains. The FREE site lets you look up DNS, MX, SPF, CNAME, Whois, test SMTP and much more. Also checks MX records against 127 DNS based blacklists. See:

Monday, 1 October 2012

Create Videos From Your Photos

The FREE Animoto Lite lets you create 30-second videos from your photos, video clips and music, to share on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Pinterest etc. Also available as a FREE iPhone or Android app. See: