Just so it's easy to find, Roger's links for free "useful stuff".
If you're using Windows, read this article about security/privacy.
Must-have Useful Windows Programs:
AVG free antivirus This is the latest version.
MalwareBytes free version available here. A CNET editor's choice malware remover. My experience with this has been very good. Don't let them trick you into getting the $24.95 version, there's a free one. Alternate link here or, if all else fails: here
Firefox web browser, use
this instead of Internet Explorer
This isn't software, it's a place you can go to check the speed of your Internet connection.
Want to delete your Facebook account completely? Click here to learn how.
Notes about Windows spyware detection and removal:
Most important! If you get a popup window telling you that you have spyware, DON'T CLICK ON IT! It's bogus and will actually install mal-ware on your computer. Close it immediately.
Also very important is to not install or use programs like Limewire and other "free" music downloading/sharing software, pretty screensavers and the like. It's riddled with all sorts of nasty stuff.
To attempt to clean up your machine, first go to your control panel add-remove software section and clean out the junk you might find there. Get rid of such parasites as Weatherbug and pretty "free" screen savers. Then, try one, or more, of the spyware removal tools below. No more than one at a time.
Again, MalwareBytes free version available here. A CNET editor's choice malware remover. My experience with this has been very good.
Flash Cookie Cleaner Free (Looks good, but haven't tried it yet myself.)
TrendMicro Housecall is not a program you download and run, but runs from the Internet via your browser.
SpyBot Search and Destroy Spyware detection and removal. Free. Voluntary donation.
AdAware Spyware detection and removal. This may now be a "trial" program.
Free Zone Alarm Firewall Better than the Windows SP2 firewall because it also tracks outgoing connections and is more flexible. I very highly recommended if you are connected to the Internet without a router (hardware firewall). Yes, that includes dialup connections
If you've got a new computer and it came with a lot of
"free" trial programs,
4-2-2009 Conficker worm
Other excellent alternative browsers
Chrome from Google. This newer browser works very well and is not available for Windows, Linux and Mac OS-X.
Seamonkey browser. Used to be called Mozilla Internet Suite. Before that it was Netscape. It's very, very similar to Firefox, but does come with email and Composer.
Opera web browser. Very slick and what I use most of the time myself.
Browzar If you are concerned about browsing privacy, this browser removes all temporary files when you close it.. Be aware that it uses parts of the Internet Explorer browser so it has some of the same vulnerabilities.
Of course, one way to avoid the need for any of these
Ubuntu Linux. In my opinion the easiest Linux distro to install and use. It comes with Firefox browser and Open Office already installed.
Linux Mint. I also like the Mint flavor of linux. It's an offshoot of Ubuntu, but has a different look and comes already configured for more media types. It's clean and "refreshing".
There are many different distributions aof Linux (and BSD, too). To get the latest on what's available and where you can download it, visit Distrowatch.com
Office Related Stuff
If you're using a version of MS Office and need to open Office 2007 files such as .docx or .xlsx incompatible files, you can get a free converter from MS here.Free Office software compatible with MS Office.. http://www.libreoffice.org OR http://openoffice.org
Save a copy of your Windows drivers with Double Driver in case you
need to re-install them. Hint, store them somewhere other than on the
Windows hard drive in case the drive craps out. http://www.boozet.org/dd.htm
Got a webpage?
Here are some search engine tips.
Good luck! It's a jungle out there.
Other Misc stuff so it's easy for me to find myself.
Want to send a text message to someone's phone from your computer. Send it as an email... remembering that it's limited as to the number of characters so keep it short.
Find information on the location of an IP address - http://www.melissadata.com/lookups/iplocation.asp
PC Mag 7 Tools for Ripping Your DVDs
Re: Vista and Virii <sigh> help!
Re: Vista and Virii <sigh> help!
Ham Radio pages
http://www.skccgroup.com SKCC Straight Key Century Club.
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/skcc/ SKCC Yahoo group.
http://www.batteriesamerica.com/icom1.htm Batteries for Icom radios
http://n3fjp.com/index.html Logging software
http://k0bg.com/ A page chock full of great technical information, oriented toward mobile operation , but great overall.
http://www.vanityhq.com/index-hamlocator.html Ham locator mapping.
Back up data to the "Cloud"
Ghost Virtual Machine [g.ho.st] gives 15gigs of Amazon.com data storage and right now if you use the promotion code of "launch" you get 10Gigs more as a bonus for 25Gigs. If you want to give me a referral my id is orion_blastar there, and each person you referred grants you 5Gigs more in a bonus.
Google Docs [google.com] also has document storage but does not give as much as G.ho.st does. The Ghost Virtual Machine can access your Google Docs drive as well.
Here is a review of the top 5 online cloud storage sites [readwriteweb.com] so you can take your pick.
Lifehacker talks about using your Yahoo Mail account for unlimited storage [lifehacker.com] and also that Google's GMail almost offers the same service as well.