Freeware/Shareware

Make your avatar

Posted on October 11, 2018. Filed under: Avatars, Everything, Freeware/Shareware, Graphics | Tags: , , |

MakeUseOf has a post on Bitmoji for cartoon versions. iOS, Android and Chrome, freeware.

Other avatar creators MakeUseOf suggests are in this post.

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OneDrive tips and tricks

Posted on August 16, 2018. Filed under: Everything, Freeware/Shareware, Online storage | Tags: , , , |

ZDNet has a post on using Microsoft’s OneDrive for your files and photos.

I’ve found it very useful for organized storage that is accessible from various devices.

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Google Maps for road trips

Posted on August 2, 2018. Filed under: Everything, Freeware/Shareware, Google | Tags: , , , |

HowToGeek has a post on using Google Maps for your road trip, including doing it on a desktop/laptop and then sending to your phone.

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Stripping vocals with Audacity

Posted on July 9, 2018. Filed under: Everything, Freeware/Shareware, Music, Techniques | Tags: , , , , , , |

MakeUseOf has a post about how to remove the vocals from music using Audacity.

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FaceTime alternatives for Android

Posted on June 29, 2018. Filed under: Everything, Freeware/Shareware, Phones, Video | Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

HowToGeek has a post on alternatives to Apple FaceTime for Android and other users.

Just have the other person/people install the alternative on their device and you can have a video call through one of these.

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Switch from Photoshop to GIMP

Posted on June 28, 2018. Filed under: Everything, Freeware/Shareware | Tags: , , , , |

MakeUseOf has a post on how to switch from Adobe Photoshop to the freeware GIMP.

With the release of version 2.10, GIMP is now a truly viable alternative to Photoshop. So is it the right time to cancel your Adobe subscription and adopt this free open-source image editing package that works on every platform?”

Of course, those of us who are cheapskates (c’est moi!) have been using GIMP for years!

GIMP can’t do everything Photoshop can. The most common deal-breaker is that GIMP does not have native CMYK support, meaning it isn’t suitable for professional print work.

Less important, but still noticeable, is the absence of adjustment layers, making non-destructive editing harder to achieve. And some of Photoshop’s smarter features, like content-aware fill, are also missing. You can get plugins to replace these.

Support for Actions is also limited. It is possible to use them, but you have to code GIMP scripts manually.”

Also check out the MakeUseOf guide to photo-editing with GIMP, and seven GIMP versions of Photoshop techniques.

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Calibre features for ebooks

Posted on June 22, 2018. Filed under: ebooks, Everything, Freeware/Shareware | Tags: , , |

MakeUseOf has a post on hidden features of the ebook reader/manager freeware Calibre.

Includes converting formats, removing DRM, and other good stuff.

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Fender’s Riffstation now freeware

Posted on May 17, 2018. Filed under: Everything, Freeware/Shareware, Music | Tags: , , , |

HowToGeek has a post on Fender’s Riffstation software which “can scan any audio file then help you learn how to play it on your guitar. Once a $35 purchase, it’s now free.”

Looks like a boon to guitar players!

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VirtualBox vs VMware Player comparison

Posted on May 8, 2018. Filed under: Freeware/Shareware, Linux | Tags: , , |

MakeUseOf has a post comparing virtual machine environments VirtualBox and VMware Player.

It notes that VirtualBox has become relatively slow compared to VMware Player.

VirtualBox is better for cloning a system if you use the paid version.

Reliability is better in VMware Player.

(Opinions are from MakeUseOf.)

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Patch My PC

Posted on May 8, 2018. Filed under: Freeware/Shareware | Tags: , , , |

Dave’s Computer Tips has a post recommending Patch My PC freeware.

“Patch My PC – VERDICT

I’m impressed with Patch My PC, by far the best of these types of applications I’ve come across, plus the fact that it’s portable adds heaps of appeal. I’ve always tended to manually update my software and openly admit I was quite surprised when Patch My PC flagged six installed programs for updates. In the future, I’ll be running Patch My PC periodically to keep an eye on this situation. Highly recommended.”

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Free streaming movies!

Posted on May 2, 2018. Filed under: Everything, Freeware/Shareware, Fun, Video | Tags: , , , |

MakeUseOf has a post about free (at least partly) streaming movie and video services.

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Facebook Container for Firefox

Posted on March 28, 2018. Filed under: Facebook, Firefox, Freeware/Shareware, Security, Social media | Tags: , |

Mozilla has provided an add-on for Firefox to keep Facebook from tracking you across the web. MSN has a post about it. Just go to the Add-Ons function and search for “Facebook Container”.

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Microsoft Office alternatives 2018

Posted on March 20, 2018. Filed under: Everything, Freeware/Shareware, Microsoft Office Suite | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

MakeUseOf has a post on the 7 best alternatives to Microsoft Office.

The 3 best online alternatives:

  1. Google Docs
  2. iWork for iCloud
  3. Zoho Office

The 4 best desktop office suites:

  1. OnlyOffice
  2. SoftMaker Office
  3. LibreOffice
  4. WPS Office (formerly Kingsoft Office)
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Instead of Firefox Quantum

Posted on February 22, 2018. Filed under: browsers, Firefox, Freeware/Shareware | Tags: |

HowToGeek has a post on what to use safely instead of Firefox Quantum (if you want to keep using your extensions).

Apparently Pale Moon and other alternatives based on Firefox are not good ideas.

Use Firefox ESR instead.

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Youtube apps and extensions

Posted on February 18, 2018. Filed under: Freeware/Shareware, Utilities, Video, YouTube | Tags: , , , , , |

MakeUseOf has a post on useful Youtube apps and extensions.

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Night Light and blue light

Posted on February 14, 2018. Filed under: Everything, Freeware/Shareware, Hardware, Windows 10 | Tags: , , , , |

f.lux is software to adjust the light on your computer automatically with the time of day.

Of course, Windows 10 has Night Light for that, but Dave’s Computer Tips prefers f.lux.

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Free Web site hosting using cloud services

Posted on February 8, 2018. Filed under: Freeware/Shareware, Google, Online storage, Web site creation | Tags: , , , , |

MakeUseOf has a post on using Dropbox/Google Drive/OneDrive to host a website for free.

The latter two need DriveToWeb; the post explains it.

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How to spot and avoid fake apps

Posted on February 7, 2018. Filed under: Android, Freeware/Shareware, Phones, Security | Tags: , , , , , |

HowToGeek has a post on avoiding fake apps in your Play Store (Windows, Google, etc.).

The fakes are getting trickier — so see how to detect them!

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Sweet Home 3D

Posted on January 30, 2018. Filed under: Freeware/Shareware | Tags: , , , , , |

Neowin has free home layout software called Sweet Home 3D.

“Sweet Home 3D is a free interior design application that helps you place your furniture on a house 2D plan, with a 3D preview. Sweet Home 3D is aimed at people who want to design their interior quickly, whether they are moving or they just want to redesign their existing home. Numerous visual guides help you draw the plan of your home and layout furniture. You may draw the walls of your rooms upon the image of an existing plan, and then, drag and drop furniture onto the plan from a catalog organized by categories. Each change in the 2D plan is simultaneously updated in the 3D view, to show you a realistic rendering of your layout.”

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LibreOffice links

Posted on January 30, 2018. Filed under: Freeware/Shareware, OpenOffice | Tags: , , |

Helpful post from TechRepublic on LibreOffice.

Download page is here.

With LibreOffice Portable, you can carry around a full-fledged office suite on a USB drive. And if you’re looking for an online version of LibreOffice, look no further than Collabora Online, which supports all major document, spreadsheet, and presentation file formats.

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