To tell you why we are a bit late this time around, let’s just say that in the last few days, more gadgets were being showcased than apps and browser extensions. We have covered a lot of cool products in the meanwhile, but you can find our full coverage on apps below.
This week, we’ll look into an app that makes it possible to make bootable USB media for both Linux and Windows. We’ll also look into the newer version of Microsoft’s Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit; an app that updates your system’s drivers, and more. Without further ado, let’s get into it.
PushBullet for Windows (Type: Free, OS: Windows – all versions, Size:8MB)
A quick refresher for those who don’t remember, last year PushBullet for Android came out and enabled users to send texts and files from computers to mobile devices and vice versa. PushBullet for Windows, which as of now is in its beta stage, lets you send texts and files up to 25MB in size, to computers which you are connected with via WiFi.
Microsoft’s Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit EMET 5.0 Tech Preview(Type:Free, OS: Windows – all versions)
If you remember, Microsoft’s Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (or EMET) is a security suite that is provided by Microsoft. But this software works quite unlike Security Essential, and even most of the third-party anti-virus suites out there. Providing an additional layer of protection to the operating system, this tool helps your system to mitigate, if not completely discard attacking executable.
Rufus 1.4.3 (Type: Free, OS; Windows – all versions, Size: 600 KB
Booting through USB devices has become a common thing nowadays. We have already made you aware about tools like Unnetbin, PenDriveLinux, WinToFlash and the likes, which let you make bootable USB media. Rufus is yet another app that lets you do that, only it is faster, more secure and sports Linux and WIndows support.
Rufus recently received a point update that added a couple of features. Now there is support for uncompressed disc image (FreeBSD and FreeNAS). And although unofficially, but support for NTFS compression can also be found in the new version.
Swiss File Knife (Type: Free, OS: Windows – all versions, Size: 2MB
Very appropriately named, if you love mending things through command line mode, Swiss File Knife offers you features like searching for files by content, splitting a file into two parts, sorting files, and all other file operations. In addition, it also lets you cut video files, and create MD5 hashes. The list doesn’t end there, using Swiss File Knife you can also send HTTP and UDP requests, and download HTTP files!
CloneDisk (Type: Free, OS: Windows – all versions, Size: 1.5MB
Whether you want to format your hard-drive, create a back-up for it, or securely delete all of your data, the freeware CloneDisk is one of your safest bets. Among a bevy of features that it offers, it also lets you resize volume and partition. Though these features really come in handy, what totally caught our attention was one feature that securely saves master boot record information without manipulating any of the data. Sounds too good to be true? Well, yeah, there is one catch, after all. The user interface of the program isn’t much helpful, and there is no help manual available either. So, if you are an expert and have tried your hand at these sort of things before, this app is a must have for you, otherwise, passing on this one might be the best course of action.
DUMo(Type: Free, OS: Windows – all versions, Size: 1.5 MB
DUMo, or Driver Update Monitor is an app that scans your computer to see whether all the drivers you have installed are up-to-date. In case, if some aren’t, DUMo will notify you and find the updated version which you can install on your system in just a few clicks.
Updates are very important. Often bringing security patches, improvements in user interface, fixing bugs, and adding more features, updates are sometimes as important as the program itself. In all fairness, most people do upgrade their Anti-Virus suites and other apps, but for some reason, one of which is it is very hard to do that without a third party client, we neglect to update our drivers. Not only will the new updates make your system more secure, and probably faster, they can also bring some significant improvements in its general functionality.
Original New Tab (Chrome)
A couple of versions ago, Chrome decided to remove the New Tab page, and showcase its own homepage instead. While, there are many New Tab alternatives that replace the New Tab Page that Chrome sports now, if you would rather switch back to things as they used to be, Original New Tab will let you do that.
Data Compression Proxy (Chrome)
If you don’t use an unlimited data plan, then it is important to know how much data you consume in each session. If you are on a mobile device, Chrome for both Android and iOS has a feature to keep track of your data consumption, but that isn’t the case with its desktop client. For that, you can get Data Compression Proxy.
At times you may want just a particular kind of content to appear on your websites, overriding other things. If that is the case, Super Drag Speeds is for you. Drag the URL of a page, and if you have the said add-on installed on your system, you will get an option to either just see the text data, or pictures or videos. When you drag a file, to make things convenient, Firefox shows a thumbnail, which gives you an idea of what kind of content you can expect on the website.
As awesome as GIF animations are, they pose one major problem. As soon as you visit the website, or are trying to open a gif file on some other tab, the file will be initiated, and often, depending on your network connection, it may lag like hell. LifeHacker showcased this extension this week, which prevents GIF from playing until the browser is ready to play the file in one loop without lag.
Stuff you should know
Microsoft Office 2013 SP1 is out
The much awaited update for Microsoft’s productivity suite, Service Pack 1 of Microsoft Office 2013 has arrived. Among several improvements, it adds more compatibility to Internet Explorer 11 and Windows 8.1. It has just been a few hours since its launch, we will very soon tryout this upgrade, and do a detailed report.
Quick Time, uTorrent, VirtualBox received minor updates.
Tip of the week: Stop using Windows XP!
In about 40 odd days, Microsoft will finally abandon its most popular operating system Windows XP, which it launched some 12 years ago. As awesome as it was at the time of its launch, the operating system is a train-wreck from a security standpoint. Stop using it, and encourage others to do the same. Come April 8, Windows XP will become as vulnerable as it could ever be. In fact, just a few minutes ago, Microsoft explained why you should made the switch.