Have you ever felt the need to capture what's on your computer screen? There are plenty of free apps out there for a simple task like this, but what if you wanted to do more? What if you wanted to show your parents how to download and install iTunes, so they can start using their brand-new iPhones? Instead of trying to explain this over the phone, you can use FileStream Take-1 Recorder to record your voice and your computer screen and send them a how-to video directly. That way, your parents can open up the video and follow along … Read more
Photo Event Organizer takes a unique approach to organizing your digital snapshots: it scans your images and automatically organizes them based on the day they were taken, called the Event. Events don't have to be a big deal--"that day you took a bunch of pictures" will do. But the idea makes sense since folks tend to snap a lot of pictures on birthdays, dates, at ballgames, and other events, then plug in their USB cable and and upload the lot to one big archive, sometimes even one big folder.
While Photo Event Organizer's compressed file … Read more
Genie Timeline Free is designed to back up the stuff you want it to save and make it easy to retrieve it. It archives desktop files and folders, My Documents, e-mail, bookmarks, videos, music, pictures, Office files, and financial files. It's intended to be a set-and-forget solution for safeguarding your system. However, the freeware disables the critical Disaster Recovery feature that lets you recover your system after a disk failure or formatting. BlackBerry and iPhone/iPad/iPod also require a paid upgrade.
During its installation process, Genie Timeline asked for our full name and e-mail address, stating plainly that … Read more
Accel Spreadsheet is part of SSuite Office, a freeware alternative to Microsoft Office. Accel is to SSuite as Excel is to Office, functioning equally well in both standalone and integrated mode. Accel can save files in Excel format as well as text, CSV, and native formats, making it widely compatible not only with Excel but also other spreadsheets and financial tools. While we could open and edit most of the Excel formatted files we created with Accel, the free tool couldn't access Excel files created in Office 2010. However, the capability to create files Excel can open is more … Read more
Filmmaker Ken Burns revolutionized historical documentaries by using subtle motion with sound overlays to bring life to old still photographs. Developer Jens Gopfert's PhotoFilmStrip uses what he calls the "Ken Burns" effect. This free slideshow maker actually creates movies out of your still images in three steps: select images, set motion paths, and create a video that can be saved in several high-quality formats, including full HD. You can also add music or other audio tracks and add comments in image subtitle fields.
PhotoFilmStrip's clean interface opened with a How to Start page that let us … Read more
Smart Suggestor is a free browser widget designed to speed up and improve your searching, sharing, and shopping activities. It can suggest similar sites to the one you're visiting, translate pages quickly, share sites via popular social media such as Facebook and Twitter, access Google Maps and similar features, and alert you to price changes when you're shopping. We tried the Firefox extension, but Smart Suggestor is also available for IE and Chrome.
OK, we know how you feel about software that adds toolbars to your browser: you like one or two of the features but don't … Read more
Older and slower PCs with limited memory resources can benefit from a memory optimizing tool. These tools don't add memory or alter the way it works (such as by overclocking) but simply free up system resources, usually by purging unnecessary files, emptying caches, and scrounging for available RAM. PC Brother Memory Optimization Free is just such a tool. It displays your system's memory use and helps you optimize it for your needs. It's a standalone app that also comes bundled with PC Brother's System Care, which is also free.
Memory Optimization Free's basic interface opens … Read more
When some of the files in a zipped archive become corrupted, it often makes the entire archive inaccessible. ZIP2Ffix is a free tool that can recover many of the uncorrupted files in a corrupted ZIP or SFX archive. The program attempts to extract good files from a corrupted archive and save them to the same destination with the same file name, only with _ZFX.zip added. It's totally portable and small in size, so you can save it to a USB thumbdrive and run it on any Windows machine from Windows 2000 to Windows 7.
ZIP2Fix has a simple … Read more
When you delete a file from your system, it's gone, right? If you used the delete method built into Windows, it's not gone from your disk until it's overwritten by other data, and even then it's recoverable. To purge a file from your PC, you need a stronger tool, one that offers secure delete methods and multiple overwriting paths. Secure Wipe is a free tool that makes it easy to delete single or multiple files and folders and be confident that they are gone.
Secure Wipe's user interface is very plain--just two entry fields, one … Read more
Consider the 2010 Sony Readers: the models pioneered e-ink touch screens months before the Nook and Kobo, but they inexplicably omitted Wi-Fi from most models--instead requiring readers to tether to a PC and download new e-books. Those … Read more