We are in an age of information, where we have so much data, movies, music, photos, that many of us turn to DVDs and CDs to backup our data. We burn movies, copy photo collections, to DVDs in the hope that when we need them, they will be there with all our data.
However, CDs and DVDs are not a failsafe. It is very likely that with a few years, those DVDs will become unreadable, as the dyes in them degrade. By buying more reliable DVDs made by companies that use more stable dyes, and as technology moves forward, we get longer lasting DVDs.
As a secondary measure, QuickPar can create recovery volumes. QuickPar creates parity volumes which will allow you to verify and recover data if they are damaged. Since we rarely use exactly the maximum amount of data space on a DVD, you can stuff the remaining empty portion with this parity recovery data there. QuickPar will form several .par2 files which are just normally burned along with your other files.
If and when you need the files, and they are corrupt, QuickPar can open those par2 files and repair any lost data.
This is in no way a guarantee for data protection, but it is a nice feature which could save many headaches in the future.
A small tip, QuickPar only accepts files, not folders, but in a windows search window, you can search * in the folder you want and just drag the results into QuickPar.
Check out QuickPar
Windows 7 Beta has gotten alot of press time, I’ve personally played with it quite a bit, and have it on my main laptop. It was, to be honest, more stable than Vista, with the acceptable incompatible issues that should be fixed by release. But…what if you want to play with 7 but not install it on your main computer? Windows 7 can be made to allow concurrent connections, and you can use RDP to run it remotely.
Downloadsquad has a post and a link to an enabler file. Check it out if you want to play with 7 but not install it on your main computer.
Downloadsquad: Run 7 on two computers, on one install
This is a very nifty program especially for people who play around with lots of programs.
Yawffer monitors and freezes Windows processes which are resource hoggers, CPU, memory, and disk usage.
You can go in and pause a process which seems to be hogging alot of CPU, finish up work, and then resume the program. Of course, this doesn’t kill the program, it’s just on pause.
This would be pretty useful if you are multitasking, and your productivity is being hampered by another program running which you can’t really close, but would like to chill for a few minutes.
Check it out: Yawffer
To continue the theme…Drive Manager is another computer tool. This program gets you detailed info about your drives, HDD or optical, even USB.
It tells you the size/format/name/volume number/read write speeds, and even better, SMART info, system flags, and analyze disks. An interesting but I doubt very secure form of privacy is also included, letting you hide drives so they don’t show up in Explorer. Its a nifty little thing, which is relatively useful, but not something you would go out looking for.
Check it out, save it for just the right time to shave off a few minutes of looking for the data: Drive Manager
I would like to assume that the name of this program is quite self-explanatory, but…let’s elaborate.
WhoCrashed is a program for Windows that analyzes crash dumps and tells you what drivers were responsible for crashing your computer. Granted, its not a fool-proof app, there are times when its wrong, but it has been quite useful troubleshooting computer crashes, especially ones that aren’t giving you a google-able error code that actually gets you results.
Check it out, WhoCrashed?
No…not what your probably thinking.
Instead, synergy allows you to use a keyboard and a mouse to control several computers. What this lets you do on a network is use 3 or 4 computers, as a 3 or 4 monitor setup.
To make it better, a clipboard is shared across them.
You install the server software on the main computer that has the keyboard and mouse, and client software on the others. What is quite nice and lets everyone have the fun, is that you can use Macs in this wonderful array too.
Check it out, Synergy
So you know how to go to the folders in the user folder which serves as the way XP or Vista stores your start menu organization.
Theres an easier way to organize though, instead of moving folders, individually cutting and pasting them into new folders. Theres Winstep Organize which is simple and free. You can get a pro version which lets you create categories, but really, that you can do pretty simply through windows.
Check it out, people who would like a more tidy start menu but don’t want to go into the folders and manually do it will find this pretty useful. Winstep Start Menu Organizer
I’ve found 2 new apps that should help with those who have a handful of computers to admin, mainly at a home network type, or a very small business.
Advanced IP Scanner finds and then lets you control computers on your network. Mainly useful for remote shutdown and LAN-on machines, easy ftp/ssh, etc. Granted, if you have a home network set with reserved IP’s, its kind of useless, but it does make connecting to computers a simple matter of finding it on the list and clicking on it. Best of all, its free for windows.
Check it out, Advanced IP Scanner
SoftPerfect has a nice portable network scanner. It’s small (<1 mb) but can scan the network quite quickly. It provides a list of shared folders that you can easily map as a drive, the usual Lan-wake, restart, but also provides mac addresses, but the best part?
It lets you launch applications through the network. Of course its freeware, and sadly, windows only.
Check it out, Softperfect Network Scanner
Here is a nifty program for the mac users out there.
I know, we neglect you guys here, but really, I don’t have a mac, although I would like to run a virtual mac on my desktop (Currently trying to figure out how to do that)
This is one program that makes me want a mac…other than final cut of course.
CSSEdit is a…*gasp* CSS editor. It does things differently than other CSS editors though, which are essentially a pretty notepad that helps you code, and maybe show you a preview. Instead, CSSEdit allows realtime stylesheet changes on a preview page. You can manipulate the code and see the changes happen, or you can do it the other way around, move around elements, change them in the preview, and watch as your css code changes with it.
Of course, it also has W3C validation 🙂
Its one of the things I really wish Dreamweaver could do, but alas, this program is Mac only, and they plan on *keeping* it mac only.
If anyone has alternatives for windows, please tell us!
Check it out, CSSEdit
Our sincerest apologies to our sudden disappearance. We ran into some real life issues that needed to be solved.
And so, without further ado, introducing Celemony.
Celemony is a program/company which has made something truly revolutionary for musicians and dabblers in music editing.
Celemony’s suite called Melodyne has algorithms which allow a user to individually edit each note within a chord. This is the applicable to chorus recordings, piano, essentially all instruments. You can shift an individual note out of the chord, move it out completely, change a chords key, etc. With a suitable library, you could concivably make a recording based solely on previous recordings.
Check it out, Celemony