Sep 252014
 

PDF Compressor
I was contacted and asked to write about PDF Compressor. It is a freeware and at v.3.0.

As its name suggests it is straightforward with one purpose. It is easy to use, simply add or drag and drop pdf files to the program window or alternatively add a folder containing pdf files. Customize the output folder and if necessary the output defaults from 120 dots per inch and 75% compression. Press the Start button and it is done.

In tests on an older XP computer the process took 3 minutes for a 39MB file and approximately 20 seconds for a 4MB one. The most important thing to look for is of course the size of the output. As the author states:

First please check if your PDF files are scanned PDF or not. Scanned PDF documents are made from images so that the program can compress it. If the PDF files are not scanned PDF, the compressor will not work properly and make files bigger than before.

The usefulness of PDF Compressor, and this is true of other similar software too, is therefore limited. The size reduction does depend on the original pdf, if the original is a manual or book it is likely not going to be compressed. Changing the DPI and compression quality will help but may adversely effect text quality in the file.

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Sep 192014
 

200ways
Was recently contacted about an article titled 200 Ways to Save Planet Earth. It is a good compilation of ways to help the environment easily and doing our part as much as possible. Some on the list like shower together may be less practical but others like reducing paper usage, collecting rain water and eating locally all help bit by bit and soon will make a difference. Read the list, it is worth it.

Just in case: Sucuri.net reports the site as clean.

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Sep 182014
 

Grab a copy of PCWinSoft’s ScreenCamera, normally $49.95. Click the link below, fill in your email and details to get the activation key.

ScreenCamera

In 2012 ScreenCamera was first reviewed here at RGdot.  ScreenCamera’s best feature was and still is the ability to stream both desktop activity and webcam to others. It is compatible with Skype and other similar programs. The program has now improved with better Windows 7 and Windows 8/8.1 compatibility. It also still works with Windows 2000, XP and Vista.

Giveaway link: http://www.pcwinsoft.com/promotion/rgdot/registration.asp

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Sep 162014
 

sChecklist

sChecklist is one in the long list of useful software to come from DonationCoder. sChecklist was one of the entries for 2014 NANY and was initially released in January 2014, it is currently at v.1.0.7.

To use sChecklist just unzip and launch. Create a new list via the icon, menu or a right click in the left pane. Name the list and start adding entries – using Ins key or right click in the right pane. New items can also be inserted via the clipboard and then checked when needed. Multiple lists can be also added and existing lists can be duplicated.  Copy and paste works between lists with the item’s checked state retained when pasting it in another list.

It is possible to sort entries by letter or number or to move all checked items to the top or bottom, individual entries can be moved up or down as well using the arrow icons. The program options are Start with Windows, Minimize on startup, Minimize to tray, Close to tray, Close button (X) minimizes, show gridlines in lists (this is on by default), Auto-size list columns and Display last selected checklist on startup.

sChecklist works on XP and newer and it is possible to export lists to a text file.

 

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Sep 062014
 

Cleaner++

Cleaner++ is a  freeware registry cleaner. Cleaning the complex and prone to bloat Windows computer has been the source of countless critical opinion. Numerous start up entries and registry keys and values are two of the more notorious sources of frustration. Keeping a pc as clean as possible by using tools like Cleaner++ and checking entries in msconfig will go a long way in making a computer faster. Ultimately the best solution is to use portable software that do not use the registry and often do not use other system folders either.

Cleaner++’s interface has two sections, one is the Registry Cleaner and the other Program Uninstaller.

The Registry Cleaner identifies orphan registry values or keys that may have left behind after a program has been uninstalled. After making sure that the entries do make sense, for example they don’t belong to an installed program, all or any number of the items can be chosen and removed or cleaned. The same window has a separate setting for cleaning the system’s most recently used (MRU) entries and other logs and unused paths. The second tab is called Unused Programs and identifies programs that may have been uninstalled in the past but may have left behind traces of themselves. This is not really any different than the first tab and it needs a careful look to make sure needed entries are not deleted by mistake. For example in the case of the test pc ‘Malwarebytes Anti-Malware’ was listed but was not uninstalled. A third tab, the Custom Registry Cleaner, lets the user delete keys and values by entering them manually, a sort of alternative to Windows’ own regedit.

The program’s second tab presents a complete list of all installed programs, including all Windows updates. The list is as complete as it can be with size, publisher, version, install location, registry key name,  program url and install date listed. There is even an option to update the program, this is only available for some programs and of course it is only available if Cleaner++ can find the a url or shortcut to it. An html list can be generated and the Change Uninstall Location option can help find the program’s uninstaller if it is not found after clicking the Uninstall button.

Cleaner++ should work on all Windows system and does not need to be installed. Note that the program author’s web site has never been any more than a download link and a screenshot.

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