Tech Treats

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This category is reserved for finds by our Editor Rhiannon Dent.

Items should consist of at least two paragraphs.

The first should be a "teaser" paragraph. This paragraph will be automatically published in our RSS feed. It should state the nature of the find and the benefits without mentioning the product name or providing a product link. For example:

"For months I've been looking for a good way of deleting 'undeletable' files. Finally I've discovered a free utility that does the job reliably and simply."

The second paragraph should at the very least, expand the benefits, name the product and provide a product link. For example:

"Unlocker is a tiny 230KB utility that works with Windows 2000 and XP. Vista users are out of luck. Just right click on the 'undeletable file', select 'Delete with Unlocker' from the context menu and next time you boot the file will be gone for good."

You can have a third paragraph if you wish; indeed as many as you like. However there must at least be a second paragraph after the opening "teaser" paragraph.

Dangerous Downloads on Legitimate Websites & Search Engines

This is a must read article on how to avoid dangerous downloads from websites.

Bill P, creator of the excellent freeware program WinPatrol has put together a great article on how this can happen to any of us. It has screenshots and examples to help you safely download programs from the internet.

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Hard Drives: Quick Format vs. Full Format

Yes, there is a difference between the two.

All the years I've been formatting things (hard disk drives, floppy disks, USB flash drives, etc.) I've seen format and quick format options without knowing the difference.
I was glad to come across this article that explains the difference between the two types of formatting as it's one of those things that's been rattling around in my brain for years that I've been vaguely curious about but didn't take time to learn.

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How To Customize Toolbars and Buttons in Firefox

Customizing toolbars and buttons is easy in Firefox with this article.

One of the things I love about Firefox is its extensibility, not only with add-ons but toolbars and buttons.
Customizing toolbars and buttons is a quick and easy way to add functions and features without installing any add-ons.

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How To Uninstall The Ask Toolbar

The Ask Toolbar and other applications are increasingly being bundled with programs; most notably freeware. It's usually installed during the installation of a program, and it's easy to miss the step where you can uncheck the Ask Toolbar option.

Ghacks has an article on how to uninstall the Ask Toolbar manually or with the Ask Toolbar Remover and includes a section on troubleshooting.
If you find yourself with an unasked install for this particular toolbar here's how to get rid of it.
 

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Wallpaper of the Week (Titanium Silver)

Wallpaper of the Week

Titanium Silver is a dark wallpaper with interesting shapes and shades. If you like desktop wallpapers that are on the dark side but won't interfere with desktop icons you should have a look at this one.
 

grey and black rounded shapes create a desktop wallpaper

 

Available Resolutions:

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How to Protect Your Smartphone From Malware

Smartphones, like computers, can be infected with malware. Grab these tips to protect your smartphone.

It's rather astonishing how quickly malware has been developed for smartphones.
Astonishing, but not surprising since there are so many of them, as malware traditionally has been directed at whatever operating system has the most users.

This article has some useful suggestions for all types of smartphones including how to update your OS, mobile antivirus programs and app safety. Worth a quick read if you own or operate any type of smartphone. :)

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What are Thumbs.db Files and Can I Delete Them? (Windows)

Thumbnail imageGot thumbs.db in Windows Explorer? Here's what they are and what you can safely do with them.

I spend a good amount of time in Windows Explorer doing various tasks. Every now and then I run across a file I'm not familiar with and I'm not sure what to do with. Thumbs.db is a good example, it has an odd extension: .db.

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