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Article title Time posted Postersort ascending Comment Link
The Return Of Simple Instant Messenger 2 years 1 month ago vandamme

It works on Linux; there's deb and rpm packages. And of course Pidgin does also.

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Best Free Software for Linux 2 years 3 months ago vandamme

pulseaudio-equalizer is a multiband audio frequency equalizer; a super tone control. It needs to be on your multimedia page because it took me 2 hours to find it. You can install it in Debian variants (I have Mint 17.1) by cuttin' and pastin' this into a terminal:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:nilarimogard/webupd8
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install pulseaudio-equalizer

The whole sad story of why it's missing from distros is here:
http://www.webupd8.org/2013/03/install-pulseaudio-with-built-in-system.html

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How To Choose A Strong Password 4 years 1 month ago vandamme

I wonder how a dictionary attack would work against a password that's a combination of Flemish, Malagasy, Latin and Hawaiian words?

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Free Windows 10 for Mac and Linux Users? 2 years 6 days ago vandamme

When I compare free Windows to free Linux....Linux wins. (Mint is my current favorite.)

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Finds of the Week: Instant Logo Search / Exporting Evernote data / 8 built-in Windows tools / Download free topographical maps 7 months 1 week ago vandamme

Those topo maps are about 50 years old. Don't use them for navigating roads. But they are interesting to see what was around mid last century. The topography hasn't changed so much.

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Five Things that Every Windows PC Owner Must Do 3 years 6 months ago vandamme

If you get hit with the CryptoLocker trojan, all your attached storage (network, extra HDD or flash drive) will be locked. But you can backup to an ext4 formatted drive which Windows can't see, and so it will be safe. Any Linux OS can read or write it it.

So why not just use Linux instead of Windows? You don't have to do any of the things in the list above, except backup your data. You keep your OS backup on the disk you loaded it from, and you can reinstall it in 15 minutes with no keys or licenses needed.

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How to Keep Google from Putting Your Name and Picture in Their Ads 3 years 8 months ago vandamme

This is why I use DuckDuckGo for search.

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It Rhymes With Oink And Could Just Make You Famous 1 year 9 months ago vandamme

".... there are lots more that are actually useful." And that's why SETI is a waste of time. However, if it gets people interested in science, gets them to install BOINC, then that's good.

Most people have no idea how lonely and empty the universe is. They've seen too many star trek/star wars movies. What have we done to broadcast ourselves? We've only spent 100 years transmitting at higher power levels and now we're starting to tone it down and transmit information to where it needs to go. That is a very small part of the history of the universe; we may have missed other civilizations by a million years or a billion. Another problem is that unless we figure out "warp drive", there's no way to get there or even converse unless they're very close.

So why try? Perhaps some people think that finding extraterrestrial life will prove the Judaeo-Christian bible is erroneous somehow. It wouldn't, but would invalidate some fundamentalist interpretations.

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Are Recent Patches to Windows 7/8 Letting Microsoft Spy on You? 1 year 10 months ago vandamme

You forgot the NSA back doors. I'm an American, and have nothing to hide. But I still run an open source operating system, not Windows or Apple. Bonus: it's better.

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Photo Stitching Software Is Completely Free 9 months 2 weeks ago vandamme

I've used Hugin and it's got a lot of tweaks and adjustments (corrects for lens distortion, color balance, vignetting, HDR mismatch). It's the only open source free-standing stitching app, and is cross-platform (Linux, FreeBSD, Mac, Windows).

I also used the Pandora plugin for Gimp. But it doesn't do vertical stitching, so for a vertical pan of a cathedral in France I turned the pictures 90 degrees then stitched them. I've had to do some manual matching as it's tough to see where lines match up on ornate architecture.

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Free Program To Create Bootable USB Pen Drive 1 year 11 months ago vandamme

"...or whatever"?? You can use this to download Linux! This might be a better alternative to UNetbootin.

Have a look at the bottom of their page for the ISOs it works on.

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Disposing Of A PC? Nuke The Drive First. 8 months 3 weeks ago vandamme

Get a set of torx bits from Harbor Freight for a couple bucks. Take the lid off the HDD and get the magnets out. I reuse the cases for different things, and pull parts off the boards.

PCs that are less than 10 years old and working can be repurposed by installing Linux on them, wiping all the data off. Give it to a kid, Freecycle, school, Salvation Army.

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Improve Clarity And Focus Of Your Digital Photos 9 months 1 week ago vandamme

Maybe one of G'Mic's eight sharpening filters can do this job. It has 300 filters and I haven't tried them all. Maybe you could do a review if you can find a category to put it in. There's a plugin for Gimp, a standalone program, and an online version.

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Keep This Free Bootable Rescue CD To Hand 8 months 2 weeks ago vandamme

Several times I've used Rescatux (Tux is the Linux mascot). It's a smaller download and doesn't have an antivirus that I know of, but has hard disk utilities, some of the usual fixes like a Windows password remover, and a rudimentary Linux operating system. It includes SuperGrub2 which fixes dual boots that Windows has screwed up so you can't boot Linux.

On UBCD, GParted is just a partition editor; the virus scanner and file manager are separate programs.

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Keep This Bootable CD Handy For Troubleshooting 3 years 4 months ago vandamme

I like Rescatux because it's a small download, yet contains a complete operating system. I use it to restore bootloaders and erase windows passwords.

http://www.supergrubdisk.org/rescatux/

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The Word Processor With No Distractions 6 months 5 days ago vandamme

Runs natively and installs easily on Linux.

I tried this years ago and now I see it's become more polished. It's more bloated than gedit or any other simple test editor, but has more capabilities, and simpler than LibreOffice ... but a few less capabilities. And some extras that might be a good fit for the journal writer. So, take your pick.

I haven't figured out how to zoom in, though, and on most themes I can't read the text. So I stick with the plain color.

It installs in a minute on Linux; I have Mint and just used the Ubuntu directions. Add the repository by opening a terminal and pasting this in:
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:gottcode/gcppa
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install focuswriter

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Keep All Your Notes, With All My Notes 5 months 21 hours ago vandamme

Tomboy does it for me. It came with my Ubuntu, works on Windows too they say.

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Security Software That Will Wow You. I Guarantee. 4 years 1 week ago vandamme

"Nobody is listening to your phone conversations" says President Hopey-Changey. True, but they have computers that can recognize your words and sort them into key phrases for further analysis.

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What Else Have You Just Downloaded? 1 year 2 months ago vandamme

The best solution is an operating system that maintains a repository of clean software, and is itself malware resistant. Microsoft Windows is not it.

Try Ubuntu MATE. You get an "app store" with descriptions and ratings, one click install, and regular updating (when and how you want it). Not to say the other 200 Linux distributions are not good, but Ubuntu MATE is probably the best place to start for a new user, right now.

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Fully Playable Demo Of An Amazing Flight Simulator 3 months 3 weeks ago vandamme

And it works on Linux!

Flight Gear is the open source alternative.

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Compose Music Directly On Your PC. No Paper Required 3 years 2 months ago vandamme

MuseScore is a blast. I used Finale for many years, but I finally converted to Linux.

In other news, LMMS has finally reached version 1.0.0. So I can write scores, and render them.

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Still Got An XP Machine? Turn It On Now. 3 years 1 month ago vandamme

"Buy Windows 7 or buy a new PC" is what Microsoft wants you to do. Well, I took off their handcuffs a couple years ago and haven't looked back. Zorin, Linux Lite, or Mint will look most familiar to XP users and are easy to install.

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Create Reminders On Your Desktop. No Software Required. 3 years 1 month ago vandamme

Clever (works in Linux too, of course). But I'm addicted to Tomboy Notes.

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Get This $30 Music Making Suite For Free 3 months 18 hours ago vandamme

It would be great to see this on your DAW page, and compare them. /best-free-music-software.htm
I got a bad taste of Magix software (nag/crippleware) from my Windows days so I prefer truly free stuff. But it does look interesting.

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Deeper into the Windows Registry 2 years 11 months ago vandamme

Great article. I wish you had written this ten years ago. The registry is one of the reasons I converted to Linux.

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How to Replace Windows XP with Linux for Free 2 years 11 months ago vandamme

Does clonezilla do what you want to do? I just used it for my dad to copy a failing hard drive contents to a new HDD, Windows 7 and all. And I put Zorin on the extra space hoping he'd try it out!

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Deeper into the Windows Registry 2 years 11 months ago vandamme

That would really be painful.

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How to Replace Windows XP with Linux for Free 7 months 1 week ago vandamme

If they're 32 bit machines, I usually put Lubuntu on them. Some had 256MB RAM, and those need to have the "alternate" installer, because the fancy "new" installer of Ubuntu won't run in that, even though Lubuntu will. Xubuntu is another good choice.

I find that using Windows is painful, because of all the menus full of useless garbage. That's why people ended up putting lots of shortcuts all over their desktop, so they can find them! I use Mint mostly, and the menus are a couple nested steps to get the app you want, or just type in the name if you know it. Ubuntu MATE is another easy to use one.

CDRoms are getting rare, so I usually put ISOs on a flash drive (1-2 GB if you can find them forgotten in a drawer). Bodhi and Puppy should fit on a CD. If you go to Distrowatch's Search page and search on "old computer" you'll find a few choices. Flash drives are easily reused when a new version comes out.

Everybody has their favorite distro, or several. I usually suggest a Debian variant to the noobs. Elementary, Zorin, Mint, Lite. Put it on a stick, have your victim boot off it and try it. Money back guarantee. Make SURE their favorite card game is on it, and their favorite wallpaper, and they'll be happy.

Don't throw away all those peripherals that won't run on newer Windows. They'll probably run on Linux!

I looked at React, but it's so last century. Ugh. I occasionally run Wine but almost everything I need is already in most distros, or easily installed from their repos.

My first PC at work was a 8086. Leading Edge D, with a full 640K RAM and a COLOR screen, I was hot stuff.

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If You're Using Windows Remote Desktop You Need To Read This 2 years 12 months ago vandamme

I use Remmina on Linux to RDP into Windows or Linux PCs.

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Forgot Your WiFi Password? How to Find It in Windows 1 year 2 months ago vandamme

On Ubuntu, it's in the System Settings --> Connectivity.
On Linux Mint, System Settings --> Networking.

No extra software required.

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Wallpaper of the Week: Colorful Autumn Leaves 1 year 8 months ago vandamme

I have a lawn full of those, and they're maple leaves, not oak. That's what is on the Canadian flag.

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Best-Known Network Diagnostic Tool Gets Major Version Update 1 year 7 months ago vandamme

The GUI version for Linux is called zenmap. Real nerds will of course want the command line version (nmap), but that leaves me out because I'm a grandpa. And I run Linux, because I don't have time to maintain Windows.

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Get 30 New Fonts For Your PC, Completely Free. 1 year 7 months ago vandamme

I wish they had put these fonts all in one folder instead of each one in its individual folder. But hey, free.

Fonts are one of my weaknesses, and after getting these 30 free ones I went through and uninstalled a few ....dozen....that I'll never use again. They take up time and HDD space.

And it also bears mentioning that of course these fonts also work in Linux.

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Are Ads Coming to the Windows 10 Start Menu? 1 year 8 months ago vandamme

There's a new version of Lite out, and the long review at Distrowatch is required reading:
http://distrowatch.com/weekly.php?issue=20151019#lite
Lite is underappreciated, probably because it uses an older version of Ubuntu as a base (because it Just Works). And the help system is great.

If you like a bit more cutting edge and visually appealing, try Elementary.

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How to Join the Microsoft Insider Program and Get a Trial Copy of Windows 10 Preview 2 years 8 months ago vandamme

Why be an unpaid beta tester for Microsoft? I'm open source now.

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Try This Alternative File Manager And Explorer For Windows. It's Free. 2 years 9 months ago vandamme

Multiple panes is a feature that, after you get to use it, you wonder how you got along without it. I used XYPlorer in my Windows days and it's great. (Now I use Nemo on Linux Mint, or Dolphin on openSuSE.)

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Full-Featured Desktop Publishing. Free And Open-Source. 1 year 7 months ago vandamme

Scribus runs great on Linux, and is included in some distros and just about all distro repositories.

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Are Ads Coming to the Windows 10 Start Menu? 1 year 8 months ago vandamme

Wifi dongles are a big sticking point for Linux. Most just plug in and work (check mfrs. website for compatibility). The driver is part of the Linux kernel.
The others, sometimes you can install Windows XP drivers using a package called ndiswrapper. Best to search forums at your Linux distro or your dongle maker.

All my PCs were Windows machines and now dual boot. Over the years I've reduced the Windows partitions to the bare minimum... just in case I need it or sell it. Hey, I paid for it. Mostly I run Mint because it looks like a clean version of XP.

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Are Ads Coming to the Windows 10 Start Menu? 1 year 8 months ago vandamme

I also have CRS Syndrome, which means Can't Remember Stuff. I don't do well remembering long commands and their switches and syntax.
Linux has a GUI for just about anything you want to do, but it also has terminal commands to do the same thing, but usually more powerful and faster. I can type "sudo apt-get install" faster than I can open up a software chooser program and find the app I want, but if I don't remember the name I have to use that app store. I can click the "windows" button and type in a program name and it loads right up, but if I forget the name I have to rummage through the menus to find it. That's why I like Mint; it has a menu tree like XP or Windows 7, but is much better organized without all the useless extra stuff.

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12 of the Best Places on the Internet to Get Free Help with Computer Problems 2 years 5 months ago vandamme

Make Use Of is a great site with lots of articles on...everything, but heavy on the computer help. You have to search for the Linux stuff, but there's plenty of it.

http://www.makeuseof.com/

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An End-of-year Thank-you from Gizmo 2 years 6 months ago vandamme

Zalig Kerstfeest en Gelukkig Nieuwjaar!

This is the first place I go to for Linux apps. As for the decline of Windows, good that you see the handwriting on the wall and are going with the times.

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A Complete Music Scoring And Notation App For Free 2 years 6 months ago vandamme

The "New comment" box is at the bottom of all the comments.

You can go to the Wine app data base and give a (thumbs down) report on Forte. It might help out other folks. https://appdb.winehq.org/

Another thing thant helps Linux is to contact Forte and explain you'd love to be a customer but can't get their trial to run on Ubuntu.

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How to Get a Free Installation Disk for Windows 8.1 2 years 7 months ago vandamme

The way I partition my machines is by using one partition just for my data. I keep each operating system and its programs (and its potential troubles) in its own partition. when upgrade time comes along (or I just want to try something new), I put the new OS in its own partition. 60-80 GB is plenty, leaving me 300 or more for data. I have 4 OS's on my laptop and choose between them at bootup, and access my data from any. (Well, except windows, which I rarely use; the data is formatted ext4 which Windows can't read, but I could have formatted it so it could.) If I have a problem or want to upgrade, I just write over that OS with a new live disk. Almost all Linux OS disks are free to download, so there's no reason not to burn one and try it out. Zorin, Mint, or Ubuntu are great for beginners.

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Best Free Genealogy or Family Tree Software 2 years 6 months ago vandamme

Gramps is up to version 4.1.1. I found some bugs in ver.3 and I see they've been fixed.It's in the repositories of openSUSE and Ubuntu so install is quick & EZ in Linux.

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Best Free Genealogy or Family Tree Software 2 years 3 months ago vandamme

Every genealogy propgram will import and export to a GEDCOM file. I imported my dad's Roots Magic GEDCOM file into Gramps and it worked great.

You will run into trouble if you start saving data that isn't included in the GEDCOM scheme. Proprietary formats could include sources, images, recordings. Those are fine as long as the company stays in business and you want to pay what they ask, but if you share the data with someone else they probably won't have the same program. If you use Excel (or the open source LibreOffice Calc) you will have your own format to sort out.

Gramps seems to be the only real open source genealogy program. It is better than the old PAF from the Mormons, and has a ton of capabilities. I back it up in their format, but also back up occasionally in GEDCOM.

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187,000 Free Hi-Res Images To Use As You Wish 1 year 5 months ago vandamme

I downloaded humungous sized ones for free. You can order prints though.

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Best Free Genealogy or Family Tree Software 2 years 3 months ago vandamme

I sent in a minor bug report to Gramps and they came right back replying that they fixed that bug in the latest version. So they are moving quick and actively developing and polishing.

And it runs natively on Linux for when you outgrow Windows... ;-)

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Best Free Genealogy or Family Tree Software 2 years 3 months ago vandamme

I went to the Orba Design site and opened up their template with LibreOffice Calc, and it worked fine. But I didn't try their converter.

I found out that GEDCOM was started by the LDS and just kind of grew from there, with some companies making extensions to it for various things.GEDCOM is text based, but others like Excel and LO spreadsheets and Gramps's are XML. There's no standard, or official sanctioning entity to evaluate new formats or features and make them standard. Us engineers have the IEEE, which is why your wireless card works with your router.

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This Superb Online Photo Editor Is Free To Use 2 years 7 months ago vandamme

It has some interesting tweaks, but they don't explain what some of them do so you just have to play with them. The integration with Dropbox and other cloud services is interesting. It would be handy if I used a Chromebook but I'll stick with DigiKam and Gimp.

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Forget Windows 10. Try Out Windows 1.01 Instead! 2 years 8 months ago vandamme

No caps lock, so you can't get the : to work. That's OK, I've seen enough! (shudder)

Your first advice is good though: "Forget Windows Ten"! I'm on Linux and I'm not looking back.

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Free Driver Lets You Print From Any Program to a PDF File 1 year 1 month ago vandamme

You can open, edit, and print PDF files in LibreOffice. Then export back to PDF if need be.

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Is Moving From Windows to Linux The Right Choice For You? 2 years 5 months ago vandamme

I've put Lubuntu on 10-12 year old machines with less than that. It will run off the CD, but not install with the "new" installer. Use the alternate download with the old installer, and it loads fine. I've run SuperGrub (a Debian spin) on a PC with 256MB, then run Firefox on it (one tab at a time, and slowly). Puppy is another good OS choice, and runs well off a CD if you have no hard drive. Midori is a better browser if you have tired hardware.

At some point you just need to throw out your antique machine, if it's worth less than a month's internet service.

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Pixar Renderman. Was $1300. Now Free. 2 years 3 months ago vandamme

The Linux version is free, too.

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A Friendly Mac-Like Program Launcher For Windows 1 year 2 months ago vandamme

Looks like Gnome 3 desktop on Linux. Not too many people like it, but to each their own.

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Got a Spare PC? Why Not Launch Your Own Radio Station For Free? 2 years 4 months ago vandamme

Yes: first take 15 minutes to install ZorinOS, Mint, Deepin, or Ubuntu; then install Airtime. Be free of Microsoft.

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Want 100GB Of Free Cloud-Based Storage? 4 years 1 month ago vandamme

I went to Zoolz and tried to sign up, and these are the lies Zoolz told me:

"Linux Soon

Oops! We've noticed that you are on a Mac, we are working 24/7 to release it. It will be out April 30, 2013"

...along with a frowning "Mac" icon. I question if they are truly working 24/7.

Well, I went to a SugarSync features request forum where crowds of Linux users gather to complain fruitlessly about no support, and posted my referral link to Copy.com (where I get 5 GB for each referral). So, I'm up to 125 GB on Copy.com. I uploaded two hours of home movies and due to the slow upload speeds of our cable, it took all night. But at least it works great on Linux, like UbuntuOne and Dropbox.

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Best Free Audio Editing Software 3 years 6 months ago vandamme

I still think OcenAudio beats Audacity, most of the time. Better set of tools, and smaller download. I just installed the latest version on LinuxMint, piece of cake.

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Best Free Software for Linux 4 years 2 months ago vandamme

XnView is a great photo editor. Fast, easy, yet powerful.

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Want 100GB Of Free Cloud-Based Storage? 4 years 2 months ago vandamme

Their "Sign Up" button has no link...?

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A Video Studio In Your Browser. For Free. 1 year 1 month ago vandamme

It will take me an hour just to read the Terms and Conditions, and translate from Lawyerese to English.

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Best Free Audio Editing Software 3 years 5 days ago vandamme

I just did this with a cassette tape of our choir. I connected my cassette player into the line in of my pc, and recorded it to one file (didn't need to babysit it, just let it run). I opened the file and by zooming in I can see where songs begin and end. I highlight what looks to be one song with the mouse and copy and paste that one song (and a little extra) to a new file. I trim it to just the right length, apply any filters etc. then save as a mp3 and wav file (for CD).

I used OcenAudio on LinuxMint, but Audacity should work the same way.

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Want 100GB Of Free Cloud-Based Storage? 4 years 4 weeks ago vandamme

Zoolz must have gotten their million free users, because now they're pay-only, and aimed at business users. And no mention of Linux client. Maybe they're still "working on it 24/7".

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Zorin OS 11 Is Here 1 year 2 months ago vandamme

Zorin 11 came out on Feb. 3, and it's based on the old Ubuntu LTS (has Linux kernel 4.2.0). Okay, that won't mean much for noobs, but it does lag quite a bit, even more than Mint. It's pretty, and does look like Windows (or Mac, if that's how you roll) but there are more cutting edge beginner distros, like Ubuntu MATE. I put it on my dad's PC (he's 94); it works like a charm. Things are easier to find in a menu, so you don't have to clutter up your desktop with shortcuts.

It's #11 on the distrowatch list, so it's pretty popular.

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Best Free Audio Editing Software 3 weeks 21 hours ago vandamme

I have a bunch of old PZM mics, and they pick up everything. Their main claim is they don't pick up reflections from nearby floors or table tops, so there is no strange comb-filtering effect that puts nulls in your frequency response. (That Media College blurb misstates this effect as "reverberation", which is way different.)

What you want to reduce extraneous sound is a directional mic. Cardioid is usually the best you can get in a cheap mic, but unidirectional ones have tighter patterns. A paraboloid reflector is better yet, for faraway sounds (think bird calls). But usually you will get the best sound by putting your mic as close to the source as possible. Use a clip-on mic or headset-mounted.

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Best Free Antivirus Software 1 year 2 months ago vandamme

Your "download" button for Comodo is actually the link to Avira.
Also, there's a separate page for Linux antivirus. https://www.comodo.com/home/internet-security/antivirus-for-linux.php
I'm not so sure there's really any point because Linux is so virus-resistant anyhow. But it's good to see Tux getting some love.

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Is Moving From Windows to Linux The Right Choice For You? 2 years 4 months ago vandamme

I'm a retired vacuum tube engineer, and I've used PCs since the 8086 days. I like the menu systems in Cinnamon, MATE and KDE, where the first menu is categories (sound & video, graphics, preferences, office) and the next level is applications (GIMP, Image Viewer, Scan). If I can remember what the name is, I just type it in the search (GIMP) and there it is; otherwise I run through the menus.

When you install a Windows app, it gets put where the autor wants it, plus a bunch of other cruft. So you get menu items for "Funkysoft --> FunkySoft on the Web Link, Uninstall FunkySoft, FunkySoft" etc. So, after trying to sort them into logical submenus, you just give up and put a shortcut to FunkySoft on your desktop. When the desktop gets full, you buy another monitor.

ZorinOS is specifically designed to not shock Windows users when they see the desktop, and there's a "look changer" that goes from Windows 2000 to XP to 7. Mint Cinnamon looks like Win7 to me. There are distros for Mac switchers, too: they have nice docks on the bottom, where they "should" be. Elementary is another gateway distro. Of course you can change a lot of things to suit your fancy, but it's better to start with something close to what you like.

So, go to distrowatch.com. Go to the Search at the top and click on "beginners" in the search box. There's links on each distro page to reviews and screenshots. Download a couple and give them a spin as a live disk, to see how your hardware works and how you like it.

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Want A Constant Readout Of Who's Connected To Your LAN? 2 years 3 months ago vandamme

Just installed Wi Fi Guard on my Linux Mint 17.1 PC and it works great.

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Is Moving From Windows to Linux The Right Choice For You? 2 years 4 months ago vandamme

I run mainly Linux Mint Cinnamon on machines all older/slower than yours. I do genealogy with the Gramps program. Edit videos with KDenLive, AviDemux, or OpenShot, view with VLC, edit photos with DigiKam, Gimp; edit audio with OcenAudio or Audacity. Mint or Zorin are best for beginners.

You can install any of these apps that aren't included by going to the distro's "app store" and searching, reading the review, and click once to install. None of this going to dodgy shareware sites and getting adware included with your download. Or worse.

Speaking of which: if your Windows machine was hit with a Cryptolocker virus, all your files would be toast. If you keep backups in a Linux format (ext4, btrfs) there's no way they can get infected, even if the virus gets stored with your files. Just sayin'.

I'd stick with Debian based distros; if you want to install stuff, most apps are packaged for Debian first. You'll find a .deb extension on the downloads. Half the distros are Debian based. The biggies are Ubuntu, Zorin, Bodhi, Mint, Lite, Elementary, Deepin; and they're all good for beginners. Go to the distro web site for instructions and introductions, then the forums for more info & resolve problems. If you install Mint or Zorin, look at the Ubuntu info too.

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Ubuntu 16.04 Released 1 year 1 month ago vandamme

I have no problems with Ubuntu Unity, but trying Ubuntu MATE, it looks like it's more noob friendly. I think I could recommend it to any Windows user and they'd get to know it easily. Kubuntu is a nice alternative if you like that look.

But wait a month or two. Cosmetic stuff I don't even notice, but some bugs need to be sorted out. Kind of like buying a car the first month they come out. Of course I don't mind helping out by getting the new version and torturing it. But I can always boot into Mint 17.3 when all else fails. The new Mint won't be out until June, after Ubuntu gets cleaned up for them.

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Is Moving From Windows to Linux The Right Choice For You? 2 years 5 months ago vandamme

"Misery loves company."

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Is Moving From Windows to Linux The Right Choice For You? 2 years 5 months ago vandamme

And the #1 reason people stay with Windows: Laziness! They don't want to fool with their PC or learn something new. Still, they put up with upgrades, not realizing that there are modern Linux distros that are more like XP or 7 than Windows 8 is.

The last reason to switch to Linux: a lot of "old" hardware will run on it, like scanners and printers. And it's 2 clicks to install, no hunting for the driver disks like in Windows.

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Develop Web Sites On Your Own PC Easily And Safely 2 years 5 months ago vandamme

Does anybody know a similar program for Linux?

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Want 100GB Of Free Cloud-Based Storage? 4 years 2 months ago vandamme

Copy.com is a new Dropbox-like cloud that gives away 5 GB. You can also get an additional 5 GB per friend who signs up. Or enemy, doesn't matter; they get the 5 GB too.

I'm up to 25 GB. Here's my link, so you can get your extra 5 GB:
[edited out. referral links not allowed]

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Best Free Software for Linux 3 years 4 months ago vandamme

Video editors: PiTiVi is improving quickly and deserves a look. KDenLive has always been reliable for me. OpenShot is easy and quick, kind of like Windows Movie Maker (except it works).

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Edit Your MP3 Files On Your PC 2 years 1 month ago vandamme

Well, it uses 48 MB on Linux Mint 64 bit. If I open up a 45 minute, 495 MB wav file, it takes 331 MB and goes to anywhere instantly.

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What Your PC Will Need if You Want to Upgrade to Windows 10 2 years 1 month ago vandamme

Looks like when Windows 7 reaches end of life, I won't dual boot Windows any more, and my switch to Linux will be permanent.

Hasta la Vista, Microsoft.

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Best Free Software for Linux 7 months 2 weeks ago vandamme

Unfortunately FileZilla Secure is "under development" for Linux. The question I have is, is the original FileZilla in Linux susceptible to hacking?

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Best Free Video Editing Program 5 months 3 weeks ago vandamme

The free version of DaVinci doesn't run on Linux.

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Best Free Online Applications 8 months 4 weeks ago vandamme

Maybe I missed it, but how about listing some good WebRTC sites for video chat? Maybe a whole article on replacing Skype or other video teleconferencing software? The only ones I know off the top of my head are appear.in and sylaps, but there are scads of others.

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A must-have instant messaging app to everyone for its popularity and ease of use 1 year 1 week ago vandamme

Proprietary, and Facebook. Two strikes.

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Best Free Software for Linux 2 years 5 months ago vandamme

Variety wallpaper changer has been updated to 0.5.0 beta (works pretty good though). It has a ton of features, but the new version features collaboration between users at https://vrty.org/ . I haven't figured out how that's supposed to work, though. There doesn't seem to be a lot of "variety" among the wallpapers so far. I guess I'm a different kind of geek.

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Finds of the Week: 100+ Alternative Search Engines, Disable Animated GIFs in Chrome, Firefox and Opera, Windows 10 Rollback Utility, 5 Free Route Planning Sites 10 months 2 weeks ago vandamme

I like that none are Google, because they know too much about me already.

On my phone, I use Here maps because I can use it offline. I downloaded maps for Europe and used them without using expensive wireless data.

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Best Free Software for Linux 2 years 11 months ago vandamme

Haroopad, an interesting HTML editor. It was reviewed favorably on last Sunday's Linux Action Show from Jupiter Broadcasting. I haven't tried because I usually use a WYSIWYG editor, but it looks useful.

"... Haroopad is a markdown enabled document processor for creating
web-friendly documents. You can author professional-looking documents of various formats: blog posts,
slides, presentations, reports, email and more ...":

http://pad.haroopress.com/user.html

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Best Free Software for Linux 2 years 11 months ago vandamme

Ooops. One of these days I'll figure out how to find stuff here.

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Best Free Software for Linux 2 years 10 months ago vandamme

Variety is a newer wallpaper changer that I like better than Wally, Wallch and others. It also can show quotes, clock, and is highly configurable and tweakable. It wasn't in the Mint repository (the non-functioning Wallch was, though); you have to search for it, add the ppa, then install. Three lines in the terminal, but worth it. Runs on all Linuxes. Written by Peter Levi, so find his page.

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Introducing Fiddler 4 1 year 11 months ago vandamme

Supposedly it works on Linux, using Mono instead of Net. Haven't tried.

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An Amazingly Addictive Browser-Based Game 1 year 8 months ago vandamme

Doesn't work for me. I get a black screen; the music works and I can click on stuff on the screen but can't see anything. Same with the card game.

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Are Recent Patches to Windows 7/8 Letting Microsoft Spy on You? 1 year 10 months ago vandamme

Hasta la Vista, Microsoft! Gizmo has the answer right here:

http://www.techsupportalert.com/content/moving-windows-linux-right-choice-you.htm

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Time To Update Your Ultimate Boot CD 6 months 3 weeks ago vandamme

Rescatux is another good one. It's a much smaller download, but fewer utilities. I use it to diagnose hard drives and memory, and erase Windows passwords, but mainly to get back my grub. Search for supergrubdisk

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It Rhymes With Oink And Could Just Make You Famous 1 year 9 months ago vandamme

Well, on Earth we are special. We belong in Heaven. Whether we'll find other creatures there, we don't know.
"In my Father’s house are many dwelling-places” John 14:2.

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Understanding and Dealing with the Windows 10 Privacy Issue 1 year 1 month ago vandamme

"One Weird trick" to solve all Windows problems: don't use it!

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Five Things that Every Windows PC Owner Must Do 3 years 5 months ago vandamme

You have the original Linux OS on a CD, DVD or flash drive, right? Slap that sucker in, hit "Install on the entire disk", and you'll format the whole disk to (probably) Ext4 format and install Linux. Your data, your malware, your Windows, and your worries will be toast.

If you don't have experience loading Linux or don't have the original disks, download Ubuntu, Mint, or Zorin and follow the instructions for burning to a disk.

Then, load your backups and get back to work. But scan files before you email or transfer anything to a Windows PC, because it might have malware on it, even though it won't run on Linux.

If you install Windows after Linux, your Linux OS won't work anymore, because Windows is too stupid to recognize it.

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A Clone Of Windows. Free And Open Source. Seriously. 8 months 1 week ago vandamme

The only reason I could see for ReactOS is if you have an old piece of gear that will only run Windows. A medical or scientific gadget perhaps. I had a milling machine that ran on a 386 for years and the driver only worked on Windows 3. (it's long gone.)

Before I'd go through the hassle of ReactOS, I'd see if my PC or gadget will run with Linux. Mint Cinnamon has been my favorite for years because I'm just used to the old XP menus, but Mint's is much cleaner. For old PCs, I like Puppy, Bodhi, or Lubuntu 32 bit. I'm talking 12 years old or more.

Linux has drivers for many of the gear that isn't supported in Windows 7 or newer. A lot of old programs will run on Linux using the Wine program.

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Five Things that Every Windows PC Owner Must Do 3 years 5 months ago vandamme

Most of the big antivirus companies have an online scan that Linux users can use to scan a file before we send it to a windows user (one we haven't converted yet). I guess it would be improbable unless you copied a whole directory or one file you got off an email from a Nigerian prince or Russian p0rn site.

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You Can Get This $24 Music Notation Software For Free If You're Quick 9 months 3 weeks ago vandamme

MuseScore. Runs on Linux.

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This Online Web Page Creator Is Looking Promising 1 year 10 months ago vandamme

One "project" is free forever. The upgrade subscriptions seem reasonably priced for a business.

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Best Free Media Center Software 1 year 8 months ago vandamme

I don't see any discussion of Universal Media Server.

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Grab This $24 Music Software Package For Free 1 year 10 months ago vandamme

Couldn't get it to run under Wine/Mint. Thanks anyway; it looks very similar to MuseScore, which is free and open source, and was recently updated.

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Microsoft Solitaire Collection now available for Android and iOS 6 months 4 weeks ago vandamme

So beginning next year it will have ads, and I have to give my address to Microsoft.

No thanks, AisleRiot runs fine on my Linuxes and has dozens of game versions.

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It Rhymes With Oink And Could Just Make You Famous 1 year 9 months ago vandamme

Runs on Linux, and it is in many distro repositories.

SETI is a waste of time, but there are lots more that are actually useful.

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