gizmo richards' support alert newsletter

"Gizmo's top picks of the best
tech resources and utilities"

 Special Announcement
9th July, 2008

If you have problems reading this newsletter in your email program, you can read it online in your browser at

If you wish to stop receiving Support Alert, use this unsubscribe link.


0. EDITORIAL: Support Alert is Merging with Windows Secrets


On July 24, the Support Alert Newsletter will merge with the Windows Secrets Newsletter to bring you a better publication on software and technology.

The amazing growth of the Support Alert Newsletter has made it too much work for me to handle by myself. The administrative requirements of 150,000 subscribers meant I was spending too much time sorting out subscription problems and not enough time finding you the best free products.

By merging the two e-mail newsletters into one, I'm getting production and administrative help from Windows Secrets, which will free up my time to write more stuff for you. That means more great freeware finds and more useful and practical PC tips.

Windows Secrets and Support AlertI'm becoming the senior editor of the combined newsletter, which will be called Windows Secrets & Support Alert, as shown in the image at left. (After a transitional period, we'll shorten the name.) After the merger, the combined newsletter will reach more than 400,000 tech users.

The combined newsletter will come out weekly rather than monthly, and my freeware reviews will be in every second issue. That means you will be hearing from me twice as often as before. However, each newsletter you receive will be shorter (but more timely) than the old, monthly Support Alert.

While Windows Secrets & Support Alert are merging our newsletters, we are not merging our websites. My website will continue on as before. Indeed, in its new freeware wiki format, I will be giving it my full personal support to make it the best freeware resource on the web.

I'll be working on the combined newsletter with editorial director Brian Livingston, who is the co-author of 11 books in the "Windows Secrets" series. Some other writers I'll be joining with are Woody Leonhard, the co-author of several "For Dummies" books, and Scott Dunn, who's been a contributor to PC World magazine for 15 years.

I do hope you'll support my new writing project. I'm sending you this special announcement today because there are are just a few small steps you need to take.

0.1 Set your preferences for the combined publication

Brian and I have combined and de-duplicated our two newsletter lists. We're already using his faster Windows Secrets server for customer service. We've given you a new "reader number," which is shown below.

Every email newsletter you receive from us in the future will contain this number. Look for it, and you can be sure that a message truly came from the Windows Secrets server and not from some spammer:

Your e-mail address:
Your reader number: 91852-52874

Our new, combined publication has several options that Support Alert didn't have. Please use the following link to let me know your delivery preferences it takes less than one minute:

Set your publication preferences now

9 Free Programs e-bookTo thank you for taking the time to select your options, I've created a new, 38-page e-book, 9 Free Programs Every PC Should Have. This printable, PDF document brings together in one place my top recommendations on the most essential utilities. You can read the e-book and immediately download for free all of the programs it reviews.

This e-book is not available anywhere else. Only newsletter subscribers can get it. To obtain your copy, simply use the link above to set your preferences. After you're done, you'll see a download button.

0.2 Use my new e-mail address and IP addresses

Starting today, please use the following email address, instead of my old email addresses, to contact me about articles I've written for the newsletter or anything else about the publication. If you need to contact me about my website or personally then use the site contact form on that website.

Email address

To make sure you receive the newsletter, enter the above address into your email program's address book and any "safe senders" list it uses.

Perhaps you work for a company that manages its own mail server. If so, you can get even more reliable delivery by "whitelisting" the newsletter's Internet Protocol addresses. Ask your administrator to accept mail from the following IP addresses, which now send you the newsletter and any replies to messages you may send our writers and staff: and

By adding the newsletter's email address to your address book, inserting it on your "safe senders" list, and whitelisting the above IP addresses (if you run a mail server), you should receive the publication with no problems.

0.3 Merge your subscriptions if you get both newsletters

Most of my subscribers will receive only a single copy of the combined newsletter. If you receive two copies on July 24, it means you've subscribed to both Windows Secrets and Support Alert using two different email addresses.

If that's the case, use the following link to merge the two subscriptions into one:

Use this link to merge two subscriptions

If you have a paid subscription to Support Alert or Windows Secrets or both, we have automatically given you credit for the number of paid months you have remaining. If you merge two paying subscriptions, you'll get the combined number of months.

0.4 We've dropped the fixed subscription fee to get the paid version

The combined Windows Secrets & Support Alert Newsletter will have no fixed fee for you to get the better, paid version. We want to make it as easy as possible for everyone to get all of the great information that's only provided in our paid content.

If you're not already a paying subscriber, you can now get the premium content by making a financial contribution of whatever amount it's worth to you. Just use the following link, and you'll immediately be upgraded to our premium level:

How to get the premium content with no fixed fee

My twice-monthly reviews of the best free software will appear in the paid section of the combined newsletter. Fortunately for you, there's no fixed fee any more. If you think my writing and that of the other writers is worth anything, just kick in something and you'll get our paid content for a full 12 months.

0.5 How to unsubscribe if you don't want great tech info

I hope you'll stick around to see how good the combined e-mail newsletter will be. But, if you wish, you can unsubscribe from both the Windows Secrets Newsletter and the Support Alert Newsletter at any time with a single click:

Use this link to unsubscribe

You don't need to unsubscribe if you're simply concerned about privacy. Windows Secrets has a strict privacy policy and does not rent its list or send mailings that are unrelated to the newsletter.

0.6 One more Support Alert Newsletter on the 17th of July

I'll put out one more Support Alert Newsletter, which you should receive around the 17th of July. After that, you'll receive on the 21st of July a final reminder like this one about the merger of the two newsletters.

On the 24th of July, you'll receive the first combined issue of Windows Secrets & Support Alert. I know you'll like our new material and our new writers on the inner workings of technology.

Our updated subscription and information links are summarized in the next section below. Thanks for your support, and I'll see you in the next issue on the 17th of July.

Ian Richards
Senior Editor,


Subscribe: To get the new, combined Windows Secrets & Support Alert Newsletter, anyone may sign up online for free at:

If you no longer wish to receive the Windows Secrets & Support Alert Newsletter, use this unsubscribe link. No password is required.

To change your delivery email address: visit your preferences page.

Premium Edition subscribers: you can now manage any free edition subscription separately from any premium subscription you may have, if you used two different addresses.

The Windows Secrets & Support Alert Newsletter is published by: LLC
Attn: #120 Editor
1700 7th Ave., Suite 116
Seattle, WA 98101-1323 USA

Vendors, please send no unsolicited packages to this address (readers' letters are fine).

Support Alert Newsletter is a registered online serial publication: ISSN 1448-7020. Content of the newsletter is Copyright 2008 Support Alert Ltd. and published under license by LLC.

See you next issue!

Ian Richards
Senior Editor,