Multi-Launcher And Folder Switcher For Windows

Quick Access Popup may be of interest to you if you are into increasing your productivity and like program launchers or an easier way to toggle between folders. This program, available as a full install or portable app, allows you to customize a popup menu to fit your own specific needs or you can stick with the folders already baked into the program. Below is a screenshot to give you and idea what the program is about and the ways it can be launched.  I especially am in favor of the portable version that I can take with me from PC to PC. You can explore Quick Access Popup more by clicking on the source link below.

SOURCE: Quick Access Popup

 

Google Chrome Extension – Shortcuts for Google

This is a nice Google Chrome extension, called Shortcuts for Google, that gives you the ability to launch over 300 Google services (i.e. like Gmail, Maps, Calendar, Keep, etc…) directly from a button on the toolbar. What has sold me on this extension is that you can also add your own customized shortcuts, in addition to the services that are provided by Google; AND, any changes you make will sync and be the same should you change to another computer. Definitely is a great launcher to have that becomes part of your web browser. Also, a big help if you are a Chromebook user. 5 Star rating in the Google Chrome Store.

Display all Google™ services as buttons in a space-saving popup next to your address bar. Reach services like Gmail, Google Reader, Google Maps, Google Calendar, and many more in just two clicks from your browser. The extension includes nearly 300 Google services and websites.

Source: Google Chrome Store – Shortcuts for Google

iChrome – Customizable New Tab Page or Home Page Extension For Google Chrome

Since owning my Chromebook I have been experimenting with just about anything and everything I can get my hands on. My most recent discovery is a Google Chrome browser extension called iChrome. I currently have iChrome set to load when I open a new tab; however, it can also be configured to be used as your home page.

Why iChrome? Well, first off, it ties in nicely with my other Google apps by displaying (for example) my email, calendar, notes, drive, etc… in a nicely layed out customizable panel with the options to customize the background, as well. Displaying of these items is done through a widgets selection page. I especially like the widget for Facebook where I can browse Facebook and at the same time have view of my other widget panels such as my email, calendar, notes, drive, weather, stock market; PLUS, the widget panel I have setup to launch the Google apps I have installed. You can even set up additional tabbed pages.

iChrome is the best of the best, in my opinion, for creating that new tab page or home page. Kudos to the developer on making a very fine product that serves a very useful and productive purpose. The FREE version does contain an advertising bar that can be moved around and is not obtrusive at all.

iChrome includes nearly 50 widgets, thousands of stunning backgrounds, and powerful features including:

Dozens of widgets including: Weather, Sports, News, Stocks, RSS, Bookmarks, Gmail, Recently Closed Tabs, and more! Drag and drop customization on 1-5 columns or a grid! Fully featured voice search and “OK Google” hotword detection Buy Pro and get dark and transparent themes, live backgrounds, maximizable widgets, hourly weather forecasts, and more Navigate between an unlimited number of customizable tabs, each with their own widgets Work completely offline anytime, everything (even the backgrounds) is ready whenever you are! And hundreds more features! Install iChrome now and check them out!

iChrome is an open source project, check it out on Github

Source: iChrome

Clavier allows creating keyboard shortcuts involving almost any key, including the Windows keys located around the spacebar…

Found Clavier to be quite interesting and possibly very useful in creating shortcuts to launch specific programs or to automatically write text. For example you could create a keyboard shortcut to launch that special program you use frequently OR to insert your email address instead of having to type it out. Clavier is available as a full install or portable app and will work with the latest versions of Windows.

Features:

  • Create global shortcuts, available in all programs
  • Fast program launching
  • Fast text writing with a single keystroke
  • Small and fast program: only one EXE of less than 100 Kb, no data in the Registry, setup program not required

SOURCE: Clavier

 

A “FastKey” Launcher For Android

Thought I would throw this out there for you Android users.  It is called “FastKey” and it is a launcher for your phone or tablet. I installed this and was super impressed on how fast it was; however, I wish it had an option where I could solely use it as an app (and not so much as a default launcher).  Anyhow, this launcher keeps a keyboard on your screen and when you need to find something, such as an app, contact, etc…, this launcher is right on top of it.

Source: Google Play Store (FastKey Launcher)

BEST (in my opinion) Easy App Switcher (for Android)

I am not going to get into all of the in’s and out’s of EAS (Easy App Switcher); but, if you want to increase your productivity on your Android devices, I highly recommend this app. It is a little tricky to set up, but once you do, you will not regret it. This app, of any that I have tested, gives you true multi-tasking capabilities; allowing to switch back and forth between apps, launching apps, and visiting most recent apps. 

Cover art

Microsoft Edge Browser To Get Extensions Support — and MORE GREAT GEEK SQUEAK STUFF (#2016-012)

Microsoft Edge Browser To Get Extensions Support – If you use Google Chrome or Firefox, then you are familiar with browser extensions that extend the functionality of the browser. Microsoft recently announced that they have shipped the first preview release of Microsoft Edge with extensions support to Windows Insiders. Microsoft Edge is the browser that we see in Windows 10. To us at home, we will not see this just yet. I am also reading in various places where Microsoft is working on a tool that will let developers port Chrome extensions to Microsoft Edge… READ MORE

Microsoft Edge

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Crush Malware With Malwarebytes Anti-Malware – I have featured the FREE version of Malwarebytes Anti-Malware in the past and thought this would be a good time to once again promote this “must have” security software. One thing to point out at the start is that the FREE version of Malwarebytes is only a scanning utility and does not provide real-time protection. You can get the real-time protection by purchasing the commercial version of their software. Don’t let this deter you from downloading the FREE version. I use the FREE version and make a habit to manually download the updates and perform routine scans of my computer.

Malwarebytes Anti-Malware

Malwarebytyes Anti-Malware

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Launch Your Windows Desktop Like An iPad – How would you like to double click on your Windows desktop and a program (or shortcut) launcher appears that allows you to customize and launch your favorite programs, apps, files, folders or web URLs? If so, you need to take a look at PaperPlane. I have always loved program launchers and this one is no exception. PaperPlane Smart Launch is a free launcher program (shortcut manager) which enables you to launch your desktop like an iPad. If you are familiar with Mac OS Launchpad, you could say that it’s a better Launchpad just for your Windows. It enables you to quickly access your most used apps, open a recent file, visit a website URL, play your favorite game, or open any shortcut etc, in one place.

PaperPlane

PaperPlane

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A Best Seller Portable Hard Drive – Looking for a way to safeguard your personal files? The WD 2TB Black My Passport Ultra Portable External Hard Drive (w/USB 3.0) may be the solution you are looking for. I currently use a similar Western Digital portable drive to backup my personal files that I then transport and store offsite (away from my home) — READ MORE

WD 2TB Black My Passport Ultra Portable External Hard Drive

WD 2TB Black My Passport Ultra Portable External Hard Drive

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The Floating Android Launcher Called Rovers

What I like about the Android platform is that you can customize your device to give it an identity of its own. I have always loved menu launchers and many of the app launchers available for the android platform gives you that freedom to customize your device (smartphone or tablet) to your liking.

A launcher that I want to share with you, that has been a hit with me, is the completely customizable app launcher called Rovers, The Floating Launcher. The name of the app pretty much explains that it is a floating “menu” or app launcher that is there when you need it and not there when you don’t need it (and if you are a multi-tasker, this app is for you).

To see Rovers in action, watch the video below:

Rovers will always be there with you, to create the PERFECT multitask utility on Android. With Rovers, you’ll always just one-click away from your favorite apps, shortcuts and actions.

Rovers as a floating launcher:

• Your favorite applications

• Android Shortcuts

• Rovers Actions (special one-click add-ons)

• Folders

Make Rovers your own by:

✓ Choose an icon for each Rover

✓ Change Rover’s color

✓ Organize your Rovers in Folders

✓ Hide the Floating Trigger on the notification panel

✓ Open Rovers Horizontally/Vertically

✓ ‘Edit-Mode’ by long press a Rover

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GEEK SQUEAKS – Preorder The ASUS Chromebox – AND MORE

How would you like a computer that starts up in seconds, has integrated malware and virus protection, is low maintenance, takes up very little space, is perfect for mom and pop, can be easily used as your home entertainment system, is inexpensive, and MORE???????

This may sound like the perfect computer and maybe it is. In the very near future ASUS will be releasing the ASUS Chromebox that will meet the specs, as described above. This is not a Windows based computer. It is a Google Chrome OS based computer that just may be a game changer.

ASUS Chromebox

Features-at-a-Glance

  • 4th gen Intel processors deliver the best performance for Chrome OS
  • HDMI and DisplayPort for dual display support and up to 4k playback1
  • Lightweight, small form design that supports VESA mount
  • USB 3.0 ports to easily share data from USB drives and devices
  • Dual-band Wireless-N connectivity for streaming HD media and seamless web surfing
  • Instant boot up in seconds saves you time
  • Chrome OS for a simplified, secure web experience that syncs all your Chrome services instantly and lets you use apps offline

If you think about it, most of our computing experience these days is online (in the cloud, as they say). The days of computers, as we know it, may be coming to an end; especially as these cloud based devices continue to evolve. I ask myself; especially, being a computer user for over 25 years, would I be satisfied with something like the ASUS Chromebox as my only computing source? I really don’t know at this point, but my geek instincts is telling me that this just may be the perfect computer setup.

The ASUS Chromebox can be pre-ordered [HERE]…  From what I am gathering, pricing will be around $180…

[ COMMENTS ARE WELCOME – CLICK HERE ]


MORE GEEK SQUEAKS

[ANDROID] Sidebar Launcher Adds A Slide-Out Multitasking Panel To Android – Sidebar Launcher offers a quicker way to access different Android features and launch your favorite apps. It’s quite user-friendly and doesn’t seem to slow down older devices. You can launch it from anywhere by swiping in from the left edge of the screen. When opened, it presents you with several elements to add, including a time and date widget, quick settings like Wi-Fi and GPS, favorite apps, and other common settings. Each widget is called a ‘Card’, and you can add, remove and edit these on the fly… @ Addictive Tips

[HOW TO] Prevent access to Registry Editor in Windows 8 | 7 – In this post we will see how to disable, restrict or prevent access to Registry Editor or Registry Editing Tools using Group Policy Editor or by tweaking the Windows Registry in Windows 8 | 7… @The Windows Club

[WINDOWS] 3 Calculators Better Than The One in Windows – After trying out several different calculators, I rounded up three programs that in my opinion, are a tad better than the default Windows calculator… @Instant Fundas

[NEWS] Amazon Raises Prime Membership Fee to $99 a Year – The online retail giant on Thursday morning sent email to Prime members, informing them of a $20 price hike. This means the service will now set you back $99 a year, instead of $79. For existing members, the change will go into effect when your membership renews… @PCMag

[SECURITY] Adobe patches a critical flaw in Shockwave PlayerAdobe Systems released a new security update for Shockwave Player in order to fix a critical vulnerability that could allow attackers to remotely take control of affected systems. The vulnerability, identified as CVE-2014-0505, is the result of a memory corruption issue and can lead to arbitrary code execution. According to Adobe, the flaw was privately reported to the company and there are no reports of active exploits targeting it in the wild… @ComputerWorld

[ONLINE STORAGE] Save more with Google Drive – We’ve lowered the price of our monthly storage plans to $1.99 for 100GB (previously $4.99), $9.99 for 1TB (previously $49.99), and $99.99 for 10TB, with even more storage available if you need it… @Google Drive Blog

[WINDOWS 8] The BEST Start button and menu choices for Windows 8.1 – Seasoned Windows 8.x users might sneer at you for “going back to the old ways”, but there’s no question that if you use a keyboard and mouse and have limited interest in the Modern UI, a “real” Start button and menu can do wonders for your productivity. Here are our top 14 recommendations — free and paid… @BetaNews

[WALLPAPER] Super Colorful @Wallbase

Super Colorful


Learn a byte at a time with Geek Squeaks’ — featuring a round-up of tech products, news, software, apps, wallpapers, articles, you name it… I just plain love tech!

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GEEK SQUEAK: An Android Side Launcher That Is Always There When You Play, Read Or Listen

To start off with this squeak, I must say, “I love the Android OS”…

Recently I was given one of the Barnes & Noble Nook HD Tablets and I must say it is an excellent tablet; especially that it is now open to downloading apps from the Google Play Store. What I have been doing is some customizing with the “Look of the Nook”.

An Android app that I came across, to change the “Look of the Nook”, that I want to share with you is a launcher that will change the way you use your Android tablet (or smartphone). It is called Swapps!, which is a side drawer launcher that gives you the ability to fast scroll through your apps.

Swapps!

When you need to call up an app you simply swipe the drawer from the side of the tablet (or smartphone). Swapps! will also give you a list of the most recently used apps (which was the main reason I installed it on the Nook)…

If interested, check out Swapps! HERE…

Note to my readers: I am trying something NEW where I am taking my geek squeaks’ name and using it to post short renditions of things (called “squeaks”) that I come across that I think you will find interesting. “Twitter has Tweets, What On My PC has (Geek) Squeaks…”

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Make Your Own Ringtones For Your iPhone (or Any Mobile Phone)

I recently had a friend who was looking for a method to create a personalized ringtone for their iPhone. What I found, that is quite easy to use, is an online application called Online Audio Cutter.

Online Audio Cutter

Online Audio Cutter is specifically geared toward cutting out sound segments from just about any audio or video format that you throw at it (see supported formats). The best part is that there is nothing to install. Simply visit the site, click on the Open File button (to select a file from your computer), select the interval you want to cut by moving the blue sliders, choose a format you wish to save a file in (the default format is MP3), click the Cut button, then click Download to save your computer.

During this process you will find that there is even a fade-in and fade-out function that will start your clipped file from silence and gradually make it louder; AND, also during this process when selecting the desired format, you will see an option specifically for the iPhone ringtone format.

Below you will find links on creating a ringtone (for your iPhone), transferring the file to your iPhone and even instructions on how to change the iPhone ringtone

In closing, one thing to point out here is that Online Audio Cutter can also be used to create ringtones for any mobile phone (not just the iPhone).

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Tech Tip #49: The Fifteen Second Slideshow

Abstract Wallpaper Set 66

Launcher 8 (Android) – A Windows 8 Launcher
for your Android!


Extend Your USB Connection By 9.8 feet

Extend Your USB Connection

Whether because of space, convenience, or décor, sometimes you need a longer USB 2.0 cable. If you need to extend the reach of your USB peripheral–such as a mouse, VoIP phone, or printer–this 10-foot extension cable is the answer.

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My Pick For A Windows 8 Start Menu

In yesterday’s post I reflected Seven Alternatives To Restore The Start Menu In Windows 8 and explained that the Windows 8 desktop looks very similar to Windows 7 desktop minus the Start Menu (and Start Menu button). From what I have been reading on the internet, this is driving people to make statements that Windows 8 is another Windows Vista and that this release of Windows will fail.  I can tell you this is not another Windows Vista.

The more I explore Windows 8 I am finding that it is a finely tuned and stable operating system. Where the issue lies, in his case, is that Microsoft is taking the gamble by making changes in the visual appearance of the desktop operating system and encouraging us to change the way we do our work. This operating system is also geared toward the tablet computer and cloud computing; AND as a result, at the desktop computer level, we are getting the hybrid or the best of both worlds. There is no way that Microsoft can compete without a tablet or smartphone operating system platform. As a result, we have Windows 8.

I do have to admit, after I installed Windows 8, having not explored the beta or preview versions, I was somewhat discombobulated. The lack of the start menu was the focal point that caught me off guard; however, after careful thought it dawned on me – I never used the Start Menu much anyway and the new Start Screen (or Metro Screen) is basically your Start Menu. It is something you will get used to and will eventually see that it does have a good purpose.

If you do want to get the Start Menu back, at the desktop level of Windows 8, you will have to install one of the third party software applications that I mentioned in my article, Seven Alternatives To Restore The Start Menu In Windows 8.  Following the post of that article, someone asked; “Which one of these start menu replacements would I recommend?”.

After some testing, I ended up breaking my pledge of not buying software and ended up with Stardock’s Start8 (for $4.99). The other software options I tested were quite good, but I have always liked Stardock’s reputation and experience in the area of desktop menu development and modifications. I especially liked, following the install, that Start8 provided a skin option to give the start menu the metro look with the start menu button blending nicely into the taskbar.

Start8

Windows 7-style Start menu with Windows 8 enhancements

  • Search for Windows 8-style (Modern UI) apps
  • Pin desktop and Metro apps to the start menu
  • Jump List support
  • Unified Search for apps, settings and files
  • Boot directly to the Windows 8 desktop
  • One click access to shut down, devices, music, documents, and videos
  • Windows 8 Start screen accessible from the Start menu

Clean, streamlined UI enhances Start8’s usability

Start8

So, if you are crying the blues, “Where’s my start menu?’”, then Stardock’s Start8 will be enough to pamper you until you get to the point with Windows 8 that you realize, I don’t need the start menu (or desktop) anyway.

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Technology News, Software, Apps, Wallpapers, Tech Products and MORE… Featuring Best Desktop Computer Deals at CompUSA.com

Where is Recent Documents in Windows 8?

How to become an in-demand Windows 8 consultant

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A NEW and Really Cool Desktop Launchpad

From the very first time I learned computers, I have always been fascinated with menu launchers AND have always loved customizing my PC to make launching my programs different than what was typical of the operating system. There are numerous launchers out there, and about the time I get a handle on one, I am off trying another. Today, is no exception…  I came across another launcher, called XLaunchPad, which is very new and quite different than many of the launchers I have used.

What you see below is what may appear to you as a typical layout of icons on your Windows Desktop, when in fact what you are seeing is XLaunchPad.

XLaunchPad

What I am liking about this baby, and keep in mind it is still in the infancy stage, is that you can toggle XLaunchPad on and off, change pages, and create a folder to hold other icons by placing one icon on top of another. I do have to admit, took me awhile to figure out how to do that… Another tip, if you give XLaunchPad a try, is this: When you have the XLaunchPad visible, simply right click your mouse to get to the options and settings. There is a little bit of a learning curve required, but once you get the hang of it, I think you will fall for it.

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GEEK BONUS AREA

Featured Tech Site – Geeky Gadgets

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HOT HOT HOT – Windows 8 Consumer Preview Download + Lightning Deals @ Tech-for Everyone

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An Easy Way to Work With and Discover Google Apps

The more I dig into cloud based applications the more exciting I find it. Let’s face it, computing as we know is heading in that direction. For example, Google is a leader of online apps such as email, docs, calendars, pictures, etc… The problem is that there are so many Google Apps, and the list continues to grow, that you can find yourself getting lost. Now, if you are an everyday computer user at home, you are probably wondering what am I talking about.

I am sure you are all familiar with Google, as the search engine and most likely familiar with Google’s email service called Gmail. What you may not know about, is that Google has numerous other online apps that you can tap into that are very good and FREE. If you already have a Gmail account, then you are good to go and will be able to tap into these online apps with your current Gmail login; if not, you will have to establish an online Google account.

Of course you can visit, try and use these apps typically through your Gmail account (such as email, calendar, docs, YouTube, etc…). To make this really simple for you I found an online service called Gpanion that is specifically designed as a launcher for Google apps.

Gpanion
Gpanion

Simply visit the Gpanion website and click on the app you desire to launch. Pay special attention to the tab labelled “More”. Click on that and you will be surprised with the number of apps available. Also, by clicking on the “Search” tab you can perform a variety of different type of Google searches. Gpanion is a nice idea, simple, works and gives you a nice array of all of the Google apps currently available, in one convenient place.

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A Super Downloadable Collection of Windows 7 Shortcuts

Here is something that I really, really liked that is a nice addition to my flash drive and to my Windows 7 computer… The web site “7Tutorials” has put out there a downloadable compilation of over 100 Windows 7 shortcuts. The shortcuts have been organized into folders, in such a manner, that you can readily find what you may be looking for very quickly; faster than all the clicks you would typically make using the Start Menu; faster than the time it takes to remember where it is and what it is you are looking for…

image

I love stuff like this and wonder why I did not think of doing something like this myself. The “cool factor” to this is that I can add to, and even customize this (with other techie shortcuts). For example, I have added the “Windows 7 God Mode” folder (with shortcuts) to this collection on my PC (don’t know how it would work from the flash drive on another PC)”.

Another tool for that tech toolbox… The shortcuts are bundled in a zip file and can be downloaded from [ HERE ]. You will find the download link at the bottom of the 7Tutorials web page.

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A Control Pad for your Netbook (or Notebook)

If you are a netbook or notebook computer owner, you well know that navigating the keyboard and touchpad can be a challenge at times; especially when it comes to launching your applications from the Windows Start Menu.

One solution that I use on my Netbook to launch my programs is a software application called ControlPad. If you are a follower of the blog you may remember the article “Using your numeric keypad as a launcher…” that introduced ControlPad and its’ features.

image

ControlPad is an app that is primarily designed to use the numeric keypad on your computer to launch applications or execute Windows commands. Of course on a netbook (or notebook PC) using the numeric keypad often results in an act of clumsiness. The solution, however, is built right into ControlPad. You can go into the options settings and enable Laptop Mode where you hit the F12 key prior to launching your preconfigured commands.

What I have found with ControlPad is that you are not limited to using just numbers.You can use text as well. For example on my netbook to launch Google Chrome, I have ControlPad configured  where I hit “F12”, then type Chrome.

ControlPad is a very cool application, with sound effects, that is designed for the techies like myself.  The more you fiddle with it, the more you will like it.  A portable version is available, as well.

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Make Symbaloo Your Internet Starting Point

I don’t know what it is, but I have an obsession for program launchers and web launchers. I guess it comes from my past experience as an IT Manager where I found out early on that customizing an end users PC with shortcut toolbar menus to their apps, saved them and me a whole lot of headaches. Even today, I find myself testing various launchers to see if I can make my PC and internet experience all that more efficient and easier. This is where Symbaloo comes in…

image Symbaloo is an online cloud app that is designed to make your web experience more accessible. From my experience I have found that the everyday home computer user is a big creature of habit and will usually visit the same web sites over and over using their browser bookmarks or favorites. Occasionally, this creature of habit will stray from the comfort zone and visit other places. If you are one of those creatures of habit, then Symbaloo will make your life a whole lot easier.  Symbaloo allows you to customize your very own start page (or home page) that tiles your favorites, rss feeds, etc… in the form of icons, on one page. You can even upload and use your own icons if you desire. If you are familiar with “speed dial” in the Opera and in the Firefox browser (as an extension), then you will relate to Symbaloo. Only difference is that Symbaloo is much more attractive (and configurable) AND can be accessed from any PC where there is internet access.

For example, below is a small screenshot of my Symbaloo desktop page (that is still under construction).  When I launch my browser (Firefox, Chrome or Internet Explorer), this page is the first page I see. From my Symbaloo desktop page I can easily check all of my email accounts, my blog, perform searches, etc…

image

Another cool factor to Symbaloo is that you can make additional sub pages, that are conveniently tabbed across the top of Symbaloo. For example, I am currently working on a second page that will contain RSS feeds to everyone that is on the What’s On My PC blogroll.

image

There is a little bit of a learning curve to using Symbaloo, but once you get it down you will not regret it.  One area where I experienced brain lock was on how to edit, delete, or move/copy the tiles.  What you do is drag the tile to the middle of the tiled area (in the white) and it will automatically provide you with options to perform those tasks.

If you are a Firefox user, there is a Symbaloo Bookmarker browser extension that will allow you to rapidly (and automatically) bookmark sites to your Symbaloo desktop.

The only way to give this a try is to visit Symbaloo and play around with it.  Symbaloo is currently in beta; but, don’t let that stop you.  It has worked flawlessly for me. If you like it, sign up for a FREE account and start customizing your very own personalized internet launching point.

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Geek Squeaks’ of the Week (#36)

image Welcome to the weekly roundup of articles from the developers of the blogs that are members of the What’s On My PC blogroll community.  I encourage you to visit these blogs to learn more about information technology and computers.  To these authors, I say Thank You!

AKS – Feel The Change
Windows SteadyState- Powerful tool to Protect Shared Computers

Carol’s Vault
Introducing Mind & Brain: A Graphic Guide sample

411-Spyware.com
How to Remove SystemVeteran

Teck~Line Lounge
Free CodySafe Portable Start Menu By Codyssey

The Spyware Biz Blog
Were you tricked ot treated?

Plato On-Line
Deceptive Credit Card Practices

Geeked Up
Mini Notebook Computers

Bill Mullins’ Weblog – Tech Thoughts
Fix Your Computer with Free PC Fixer a 4.5 Star Utility

Right On Technology
Apple $30 a Month TV Service for iTunes

The PC Security
How to Crack, Open or Access
Outlook PST File without Password

Computer Too Slow
How to disable CD/DVD autoplay in Windows

Crazy World of G
Are You In Sync?

LifeHacker
Replace Library Icons
Customizes Windows 7 Library Icons [Downloads]

Rarst.net
Colorbrewer – excellent color schemes resource

Sugarloaf Tech
Just say no to toolbars

Tech-for Everyone
Is It Worth Upgrading? (Two quick reco’s)

AskBillFirst
Nokia Recalls 14 Million AC Adapters – Gearlog

Free PC Security
Facebook Virus – UPS Virus – Using SUPERantispyware

Tune Up Blog
TuneUp Utilities – Enjoy your PC

Technogran’s Tittle Tattle
Live Photo Gallery v Google Picasa round 3

Computer Maintenance
Delete Temporary Files/Cache and Speed Up Your Computer

Canadian Tech News Blog
8 Must Have Applications

Freeware Elite
Launchy: Great flashy launcher

Mrintech
Winners of Google Wave Invitations Giveaway!

Worthy Tips
How to detect what .Net version installed on your machine?

Technize
Microsoft Security Essentials A Free Anti-Virus From Microsoft

I Love Free Software
Fastest Free Disk Imaging Software: Macrium Reflect

Techolar
Domain names extensions in International scripts

TTC Shelbyville
Resize Photos Online

Tux in the Midwest
Flirting with Androids

Snakebytez
Client for Google Translate

Freeware Pharmacy
Hulu Desktop

What’s On My PC…
I Want That Video…

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Geek Squeaks’ of the Week (#35)

image Each week What’s On My PC features links to articles (posted within the past 7 days) from the tech blogs that are on the What’s On My PC blogroll (at the sidebar of the blog).  If you are new or old to information technology and computers, these blogs are awesome resources for keeping in tune.

Canadian Tech News Blog
Top 5 Free Software

Snakebytez
Firefox 3.6 Beta 1 now available for Download

Carputer’s News and Computer Tips
Free Software for Business Use

Tux in the Midwest
Another website launched with Drupal

Worthy Tips
How to preset safe mode boot
before rebooting in Windows OS?

Technize
Download Free Windows 7 Product Guide From Microsoft

I Love Free Software
ADrive: Free 50GB Online Storage and Backup Space

TTC Shelbyville
Control the Ping Command With Performance Pinging

The Abbey Rose
Favicon’s

Techolar
How to disinfect your computer keyboard

Mrintech
WordPress XML and XHTML Sitemap

Freeware Elite
So, do you know what is a Browser?

Technogran’s Tittle Tattle
Facebook, my pet peeves.

Tuneup Blog
Tuneup Blog Diary: Extend Your Laptop’s Battery Life (Part Two)

Computer Too Slow
Setting up Dual Monitors

Crazy World of G
Open Sesame

Lifehacker
Google Chrome Beta Adds Bookmark Sync, Speed Boost [Updates]

Rarst.net
HP ProBook 4510s – nice small business notebook

Sugarloaf Tech
How to display your birthday, not your age, in Facebook

Tech-for Everyone
Windows 7 64-bit Adventures

AskBillFirst
What Did He Mean By That? SMS and E-mail Etiquette

Free PC Security
WOT Community Trust Certificate

AKS-Feel The Change
Free Windows File Manager Alternative

Carol’s Vault
Beautiful and free vector graphics

411-Spyware.com
How to Remove BlockWatcher

Teck~Line
See What a Mac User Has To Say About Windows 7

Plato On-Line
Facebook Spamming Practices Revealed

Is You GEEKed Up
Windows 7: What’s Wrong with It?

Evilfantasy’s Blog
Fix MSE Utility – Repair Microsoft Security Essentials

Confessions of a Freeware Junkie
Sending large files to a friend without a web service?
Create a torrent!

Bill Mullins’ Weblog – Tech Thoughts
A Seriously Advanced Photo Tool – Free Image Analyzer 1.31

Right On Technology
Little Buddy GPS

Scoroncocolo Tech Pages
Backing Up and Synchronizing Files with SyncToy

What’s On My PC
Using your numeric keypad as a launcher…

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A Program Launcher that is Mouse Activated

I have always had an attraction for menu launchers and can’t wait to try a new one out. A new one to me, called MouseExtender, is very unique in that the menu (which you customize and create) is launched via your middle mouse button. When you click on the middle mouse button, your menu will appear wherever the mouse pointer is located.  How convenient is that?

It appears that MouseExtender is in the early development stages; however, do not let that distract you from trying or using it.  This puppy is attractive in appearance, has Windows 7 effects AND has Windows Shutdown, Restart and Control Panel buttons already configured. Adding a File, Folder, or Program is as easy as right clicking on the menu panel and making a selection.

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I plan to monitor this app very closely. I would love to see the developer further engineer MouseExtender to include menu categories, web links, and the ability to move the icons around on the menu panel. Otherwise, very impressive and unique program launcher.

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Features

Instant access your programs and folders in a second!

Access to Control panel and restart/shutdown buttons!

Nice Windows 7™ like effect!

Disable ME in specific programs

Run ME when Windows® starts

Access to the source-code

New features

Adding currently running programs to ME shortcuts and exception lists

Simple item customization: tooltips are now editable

User can remove “close” x-button

ME can be disabled/enabled for all programs

User can show ME from tray icon menu

ME can be pinned to screen

Shadow added to window

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Over 240 Tech Blogs and Sites In One Place

One of my favorite computer past times is searching for new computer information, software and tech related blogs (and sites). Some people collect baseball cards; I collect tech blogs. Recently the collection surpassed a total of 240 blogs and sites that can be accessed by clicking on the Launch Pad icon located on the sidebar of the blog.  The blogs that you see in the Launch Pad collection that display a larger font size, are those blogs that are part of the What’s On My PC… blogroll community.

What’s On My PC
Launch Pad

Recently I added the following blogs and sites to the Launch Pad for your reading pleasure.  Enjoy!

Luv GadGet dot com

Mrintech

thePC Security

Technowpedia

Digital Quest

PC Computer Tips

Big Geek Daddy

Web Talk

To The PC

Marco Folio.net

Global Nerdy

ez-gadget.com

About Tricks

Anwar Blog

Computelogy

CrazzyCool

Danzy World*

Devil’s Lab

Freewares n Betas

Hack-Genius

HellBound Bloggers

Internet Technology Blog

Netzsavvy

One Trick A Day

PCDrome

Computing Unleashed

SnapHow.com

Software and Learning of Encyclopedia

Tech Guru

Techno-Entertainment Blog

Techonoid

Teen Tech Guru

Trick’s Machine

UpcomingTechs.com

WinPatrol Blog

Techie-Pinoy

Hacker’s Lane

TechCruser

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A Portable Start Menu for your Flash Drive

I generally am a person that likes to be organized; even when it comes to managing files and program apps on my flash drive. I have tried numerous menu launchers on my flash drive and the one I settled with in the end is called “Portable Start Menu”. This little menu app installs an icon in your system tray that serves as a start menu for your flash drive apps and it does not stop there.

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There are (3)-three features that I really like about Portable Start Menu:

You can configure Portable Start Menu, to automatically launch an application (or applications) when it starts up. For example, I carry my personal information manager with me. When I plug in my flash drive and start up “Portable Start Menu”, my personal information manager will automatically load and it is the first app I see.

    When you click on the Portable Start Menu Icon in the tray, you can readily see how much space you have remaining on your flash drive.

      When you get ready to unplug your flash drive, there is a menu selection available [ Close all running applications ]. This option will attempt to close any app you have open and once the apps is successfully closed a popup box (with an audio alert) will appear informing you it is safe to pull the drive. This feature alone is unheard of in the other portable menu apps I have tried. Many people lose data or cause file corruption on their flash drives due they end up pulling the drive before it has completed its’ operations.

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        Description:

        • Organize and launch applications via a tray menu
        • Closes running applications on USB-Sticks automatically
        • Checks if an application has been changed before execution
        • Quick Start functionality to start applications with a few keystrokes
        • Runs on USB-Sticks without leaving any traces on a host PC
        • Portable Start Menu is Freeware
        • Close running applications when you exit Portable Start Menu
        • Safely remove your USB-Stick
        • Supports relative paths
        • Can open folders, web sites, files, etc…

        Portable Start Menu is my menu launcher of choice on my flash drive. I have been using this app for over a year and it has not ever let me down.  Highly recommended!

        System: Win9x/Me/NT4/2000/2003/XP/Vista
        License: Freeware

        [ GET IT HERE ]

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        Using your numeric keypad as a launcher…

        There are numerous programs out there that will let you assign hotkeys on your keyboard to execute windows commands that will launch programs, web sites, etc…; BUT, have you ever seen a program that allows you to enter numeric codes on the numeric keypad (on your keyboard) to do the same thing.  I never have until I experienced “ControlPad”.  If you do not know what the numeric keypad is; it is the seventeen key section of your computer keyboard, usually on the very far right.  Most people do not use, or know how to use, the numeric keypad; unless you are an accountant, banker, mathematician, etc…

        Using ControlPad gives the numeric keypad a whole different perspective in that it turns your numeric keypad into a windows command execution center with some cool sound effects. This software is an excellent example of using something that is very rarely used, such as the numeric keypad.

        You may configure any numeric code to: Execute any program, open any document, open any web address or send any series of keystrokes to the operating system.

        Once ControlPad is running, press and hold the * key on the numeric keypad, for about 1 second. At this point, a small window will pop up, allowing you to enter any keyword or numeric code.

        Pressing the code followed by Enter will execute the associated command.

        Commands are easily configured through the same interface – activate the input dialog (press and hold *), enter the desired code and press the numpad Divide button to associate a new command.

        For example, I added the command of “123” to go directly to my blog.  I hit the asterisk (*) key on the keypad, type 123, hit “Enter” and I’m in…  It may sound like alot, but it is very efficient.

        Control Pad

        A really cool feature about this program is that it can be used as a portable app so that it can be carried with you on your flash drive.

        It does not register anything in the Windows registry, with the exception of what Windows requires in order to recognize it in the Add/Remove Software dialog and Start menu.

        There is also a “Zip” version available that will allow you to use ControlPad as a portable app.

        Control Pad is highly customizable:

        Configure the location of your commands file – for easy backup.

        Change almost every aspect of the user interface (colors, transparency, size, font).

        Change sounds / add your own sound sets.

        You can also input codes that are regular words in the regular keyboard

        It is also laptop compatible – F12 is the launch key, F11 the close key (like numpad -) and F10 is the Add key (like numpad /)

        If you are like me and like software that is different, then this little app is for you, as well.  I am already thinking of ways to use this. I have been in contact with the author of ControlPad and he is open to suggestions. This is another great example of someone thinking outside the norm. You can get ControlPad [ HERE ] .

        Update (7/31/2009) –  NEW FEATURES added:

        Released 0.51
        0.50 – added another button in the Add Command dialog to let you insert special commands, like mute volume, launch mail etc.
        0.51 – added beeper (try ++0.5 to beep in half a minute)

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        Utility Launcher – A convenient launcher for your clean-up and maintenance programs…

        Utility Launcher is a small program that is used to make your computer maintenance routines a more streamlined process. This is one of those little apps that I have featured on here before [ click here ] and fell in love with.  Following my first write-up of Utility Launcher, the author contacted me and was leaning toward not developing the app any further; HOWEVER, I was very glad to see some new recent enhancements to Utility Launcher (e.g. Version 2.0 has a much improved List Building/Handling capability as compared to the previous version).

        Many people have installed on there PC’s various types of security software, defrag utilities, disk maintenance utilities, etc.; HOWEVER, the problem is that these program still require periodic intervention on your part to help keep your PC in tip top shape. Let’s face it, most people do not take the time to keep their PC’s in shape.

        Utility Launcher is one of those “diamonds in the rough” that makes your maintenance routines a much more enjoyable and organized (step-by-step) process. The most technical part is initially setting up the application to create the list of your maintenance and security software; HOWEVER, following that setup process, it is well worth it.  To the author (JFB) , keep this app going! – [ GET IT HERE ]

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        Publisher’s Description (and Instruction)

        Utility Launcher is a convenient launcher for clean-up and maintenance programs. You can place up to 20 utilities under a single (1) desktop icon, so they can be accessed and run quickly. This is the utility program that I use regularly to run my arsenal of third-party clean-up and maintenance programs. Version 2.0 has a much improved List Building/Handling capability as compared to the previous version. [download: 1.2 MB]

        Once un-zipped, place the program folder “Utility Launcher 2.0” (which contains the Application and RunTime files) anywhere you like.  Open the folder and make a shortcut to the “Utility Launcher 2.0.exe” application. Place the shortcut on the desktop.  You should then be ready to go.

        The use of UL is fairly obvious. Click around a bit to see how things work. The only “technical” thing that you will need to know how to do is “navigate” to the program(s) that you wish to add to UL. Also, (this is a less tecnical point)  when you are using the “Utility List Handler” (Menu > Utility List Handler) to build and/or modify a Utility List, you will need to click-on/highlight an item before you can manipulate (add, remove, move, etc.) it.  That’s about it…

        This software is Homemade Freeware.  It comes with no guarantees of any kind.  I use it everyday; it should work fine…

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        Corral your desktop icons with “Fences”

        Stardock Fences

        Stardock, a leading developer of software that enhances the look, feel and function of Microsoft Windows, has a new product in the works called “Fences”. Fences is a program launcher that helps you organize your desktop, and can hide your icons when they’re not in use. Fences is a one-of-a-kind program, allowing you to draw labeled shaded areas on your desktop, which become movable & resizable containers for your desktop icons. Fences is FREE for personal use; however, I want to point out that “Fences” is currently in beta (has been released to users for software testing before its official release). I have been an advocate and user of the Stardock products (e.g. Objectdock) and can attest to the quality and reliability of their products.

        Stardock Fences

        Click below to play a full screen demo of “Fences”

        Stardock Fences Demo

        clipped from www.stardock.com

        Stardock’s New “Fences” Application Solves Desktop Clutter Problems, Organizes the Desktop


        PLYMOUTH, MI (FEBRUARY 4, 2009) – Stardock launched its most innovative desktop utility application since the popular WindowBlinds today – Stardock Fences for Windows XP, Vista and Windows 7. The free application from Stardock clears desktop clutter and provides consistency and organization for groups of files on the desktop. Fences allows users to literally “draw” labeled shaded areas on the desktop which become movable & resizable “containers” for desktop icons. These groups arrange and hide the files on the computer’s desktop solving the “constant mess” problem that has plagued the desktop since its inception

        Stardock President and CEO Brad Wardell said, “This is easily the most innovative piece of software we’ve released since WindowBlinds which considering the popularity of DeskScapes, ObjectDock, DesktopX and our other programs I think is saying a lot.”

        To help solve another weak point of the desktop – the mere appearance of clutter, Fences offers a novel quick-hide feature. Users can double click the desktop and all of the icons will fade out. When users double click again the icons will return. Users can pick and choose which desktop icons hide when the feature is activated.

        To see Fences in action and download please visit: http://www.stardock.com/products/fences/.

        For more information about Stardock please visit www.stardock.com.


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        A Homemade Utility Launcher

        This post is about an utility launcher that is geared toward the computer user who has a basic understanding about file paths and locating the executable for specific programs. An executable is the actual (*.exe) file that launches an application.

        If you have that understanding, then you need to take a look at a program called “Utility Launcher”. Utility Launcher is a “homemade” program created by a computer hobbyist that is a diamond in the rough. Utility Launcher is a convenient way to launch up to 20 “clean-up and maintenance” programs from a single (1) desktop icon.  After you have your cleanup and maintenance programs loaded into the launcher, you simply click on the shortcut to startup the launcher, click on “Run” and the launcher will run the first “cleanup or maintenance program” on the list. After that “cleanup or maintenance program” completes, you click “Run” again, and the second “cleanup or maintenance program” performs its’ task; and so on and so forth. If there is a program on the list that you do not want to run, then you simply click on the “skip” button. If you need to change the order of the tasks, there is a text file, within Utility Launcher’s folder, that you can edit to make the change. For a homemade program, this program makes performing cleanup and maintenance tasks, such as virus scans, software updates, disk optimizing, and defragging, very convenient.  I can also see using this utility to assist other people who do not know how or what order to run their cleanup or maintenance software.

        You can see from the graphic below, the order which I run some of the maintenance and security software on my PC…  Again, if you have the basic understanding of file paths and executables, you will be able to tell what programs I have loaded to run in the  “Utility Launcher”.

        Utility Launcher

        It is small, innovative, software programs like this that I find exciting to use and write about.  Kudos to  James F. Bays, author of Utility Launcher.  Definitely a keeper on my PC!

        Description of Utility Launcher, as reflected on the author’s website:

        Utility Launcher is a convenient launcher for clean-up and maintenance programs. You can place up to 20 utilities under a single (1) desktop icon, so they can be accessed and run quickly. This is the utility program that I use regularly to run my arsenal of third-party clean-up and maintenance programs. [download: 1.2 MB]

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        GET IT HERE - Utility Launcher

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