Skip to content

Tag: Freeware

Geeky Greats: Free Apps For Better Geekery

I am always on the hunt for applications which either improve my workflow, provide me with a free alternative to something I would otherwise have to pay for, or generally improve my geek stature. So without further ado, here is a short list of some of the apps I have found recently:

  • .htaccess Editor – This web-based tool allows you to quickly generate .htaccess files for your web site, without having to remember your way through vi or having to look up the sytnax when trying to do some basic user authentication.
  • InstallPad lets you create a list of applications you often find yourself installing when setting up someone’s Windows-based PC. Any application which can be directly downloaded from the Internet can be added to InstallPad. All you have to do is run the self-contained InstallPad executable file, and it will go grab all the apps from the Internet and install them for you. It’s a pretty slick way to set up Firefox, Thunderbird, and more, all with one double click for free.
  • Google Analytics Reporting Suite – A free Adobe Air-based application which runs from your desktop and allows you to quickly monitor all of your Analytics accounts through a very smooth interface, optimized to be less sucky than the clunky interface provided by Google. Requires Adobe Air, also a free app.
  • MailStore Home – I have written about this free tool before, and it still blows my mind so much that it deserves to be mentioned again.  MailStore allows you to back up and archive your email accounts, whether they be in Outlook, Thunderbird, or GMail (or others). This tool saved my neck when my email accounts got too big for MozBackup to handle without crashing.  Now, I can use MailStore and archive stuff to keep my inboxes streamlined, then backup the archived email with my favorite paid backup tool, Carbonite.
  • Tweet Deck – If you are a Twitter user, this is THE tool for keeping up with everything, posting, and more. Another free Adobe Air application, Tweet Deck runs from your desktop and has more bells and whistles than a elementary school band class.

Configure Putty Settings For Improved Performance

Not sure about you, but I use Putty perhaps more than any other application on my Windows PC’s.  Putty is a powerful, fast, free application which can be used to connect you quickly and securely to your Linux/Unix environment.

A person named “dag” from the Field Commander Wieers blog has provided an excellent article on configuring Putty for optimal usability and performance called “Improving Putty Settings on Windows“.  After walking through the steps listed in the article, I fired up Putty and was amazed by the improved text rendering, colors, and more.

A brief summary of settings gleaned from the article:

Category: Session
Connection type: SSH

Category: Window
Lines of scrollback: 20000

Category: Window > Appearance
Font: Lucida Console, 9-point
Font quality: ClearType
Gap between text and window edge: 3

Category: Window > Translation
Character set: UTF-8
Handling of line drawing characters: Unicode

Category: Window > Selection
Action of mouse buttons: xterm (Right extends, Middle pastes)
Paste to clipboard in RTF as well as plain text: enabled

Category: Window > Colours
ANSI Blue: Red:74 Green:74 Blue:255
ANSI Blue Bold: Red:140: Green:140 Blue:255

Category: Connection
Seconds between keepalives (0 to turn off): 25

Category: Connection > SSH > X11
Enable X11 forwarding: enabled

Read the whole article here.

Clicky