We are back with our weekly round-up of best software and browser extensions. This week we’ll be taking a look at how to go anonymous on the internet without spending a dime. We’ll also see how to convert a 30-day paid trial of AVG into the free full version. And how to remove scamware from our browsers. As always we have hand-picked the best extensions, and have spotted the software that got updated since our last meet.
Norton Power Eraser 4 Beta (Type: Free, OS: Windows – all versions, Size: 3 MB)
If you’ve been seeing a lot of pop-ups on your browser lately , your computer could be affected with something called scamware. Now, you can go to the extensions settings page and try to disable a few of the add-ons you have installed, and tweak similar settings, but the easiest way around this would be to use Norton Power Eraser 4. It’s free and works with all the popular browsers. In addition, it also provides protection and helps your browser protect from similar threats in the future.
3D Builder (Type: Free, OS: Windows 8+, Size 22 MB)
Microsoft released a native 3D printing app for Windows 8.1 users this week. The app lets your prepare and customize objects to print their 3D sculptures. The app is free and utilizes the plug-n-play support of the Windows 8.1 OS and the out of the box 3D file formats of the same OS.
Flipboard (Type: Free, OS: Windows 8+, Size: 1 MB)
The popular news magazine app Flipboard rolled out its official client for Windows 8 (and higher) this week. Just like its counterpart available on other platforms, the app also lets you check what links, articles, photos and videos your friends are sharing on various social networks.
It also lets you save articles for later viewing, and offers a powerful search engine that can help you discover more content based on several parameters.
CyberGhost VPN 5 (Type: Free/Paid, OS: Windows – all versions, Size: 9 MB)
On June 6th, Edward Snowden revealed some information that changed the way we used to think about our privacy, or the internet as a whole. Anything and everything we do on the web can be tracked and monitored. But you can, of course, make this process complicated, if not impossible to the trackers. CyberGhost VPN 5 is a good app that can help you do so. It doesn’t require any sign-up, and the free version of it lets you choose a server from about 15 countries. The free account will suffice to get most of your work done. There isn’t any throttling in speed. Neither is there any data limitation. But one limitation that has been imposed on free accounts is that you will be disconnected every three hours.
You can buy a single-user subscription for $40 which will stop the automatic disconnection, and extend the number of servers you can use and choose from.
AVG Downgrader (Type: Free, OS: Windows – all versions, Size: 2 MB)
If your 30 days trial period of AVG is about to end, you can use AVG Downgrader to turn it into the free full version of the software. Please note, AVG offers a free version of its Anti-Virus suite that sports basic protection against carious malware. On the other hand, the 30 days trial version of AVG Internet Security is more powerful, so when you will downgrading, you are compromising on your protection. But still, even the free version of AVG offers more protection against viruses than most of its paid-competitors. This tool will make the transition easier and save some bandwidth in the process.
CrxMouse lets you operate your Chrome browser with the help of gestures. Once installed, you will be required to drag your mouse and make lines and arrows to perform the usual operations such as- closing a tab, opening a tab, re-opening a closed tab, or the navigation to the web. The extension offers a plethora of options to tweak and mold the extension for your best use.
RSS is a nice way to catch up with all the news from around the world. But one thing RSS doesn’t do, which is also a great way to discover content is post suggestions. That’s exactly what Gravity Highlighter is here for. Based on the kind of content you are viewing, the extension suggests similar things from the same website.
Looper for YouTube is an extension available for Chrome which lets you play the good bits of a YouTube video over and over again. Using this extension, you can specify the portion you would want the player to replay, and it will do just that instead of replaying the entire video.
If you prefer to keep your search history to yourself, Disconnect Search can help you achieve that. Disconnect Search allows you to anonymously use search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo. It hides your IP address and encrypts your interaction withthe said search engines. It is available for both Chrome and Firefox.
Speckie is a very popular spell checker tool available for Internet Explorer users. The add-on recently got updated to support Internet Explorer 11 and touch interface.
The new version of the popular media player VLC rolled out this week. The update mostly patches the bugs which were cryted in its last stable release. The glitches while recording a video, adjustment in subtitles, and GPU decoding under Windows have been well taken care of this time. Issues like HTTP interface infinite loop, OSS output and DirectSound pass-through have been resolved as well. Besides, the language pack has been updated as well.
The other free alternative to VLC, K-Lite Mega Codec Pack too got an update. Built-in core tools like MPC-HC, LAV Filters and Codec Tweak Tool have been updated. The software can now detect NVIDIA Optimus more precisely and, the HEVC decoding performance is improved as well.
DAP got updated this week, and the new version sports some interesting new features. The bandwidth usage of every single file can now be set. The bug that this software had with Internet Explorer 10 has been resolved as well. Another very useful addition is “Auto Resume” which fixes the broken or expired links without any effort from the user.
Tip of the week: Want to download a torrent faster? It’s simple, just don’t throttle the upload speed.
If you download things using any BitTorrent client, one common question people always wonder is how to increase the download speed of a newly available torrent. Problem with new torrents is that depending upon its popularity, lots of people might be downloading the same file. Now, there are many people who limit their upload speed to save data. Whatever be your explanation is for doing that, a thing that I have noticed recently is as soon as you remove that upload limitation, the download speed goes up the roof, every single time. I’ll save the explanation part for another post, till then, happy torrenting and we’ll see you next week.