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Hi Everyone,

To those who don't know me, I'm Clif Sipe aka Clif Notes, owner/author of and currently one of the Sr. Editors at Hopefully some of you old-timers here still remember me though.

My task this week, (yes, I have a boss even online) is to write up a review of DonationCoder. Do you realize what a daunting task that is? Maybe you can help me out ... (please?)

I'd like you to reply back with your ideas on DC's purpose and it's features, as you see it, and maybe some details on why you keep coming back for more. Just keep in mind that I might quote some of what you say. I'll be sure to give credits to all sources.

Best wishes to you all,


A long time ago, someone saw a need for this tool (XP only)


I now see the need for a companion tool for Vista and Win7.
What do you think?

Here are the details on how this is done in Vista/Win7.

Hi folks,

In my newsletter, I have a section called "What do you want?". Often I can find an existing program that fits the need, and more often others chime in with plenty of ideas.

Here is a request that I figured would be perfect as a coding snack and additionally would make my readers familiar with your services in this forum.

Marlene O wrote the following:
I would really like a little progie that would make a new folder for a file. For instance if I have a zip file called, if I could right click it and have the option to make a folder called reader that I could put it in. I get so sick of right clicking and choosing new then folder then typing in reader. Sounds trivial but it is so annoying when you have fifty files that you want to make a separate folder for each file
folder called


In this case, I don't believe she is asking to have the program unzip the file into a folder. That is already available to most folks.

I believe she merely wants a folder to store it in. Perhaps the program could also move the file into the containing folder. Another idea might allow selecting more than one file and using those names to create an equal number of folders to contain the files.

Thanks to all.

"the best things in life are  still free"

Mini-Reviews by Members / Keeping up to date with DC minireviews
« on: February 19, 2007, 12:16 AM »
Hi Mouser,

Thanks for the confidence in me that you show. I just now am going through the DC Newsletter. It's just great for folks like me who really don't have time to participate often, but want to keep up with the going's on here.


Living Room / Free license for SEAU (creates nice installers)
« on: November 13, 2006, 11:28 PM »
Hi folks,

I have been offered a free license to any single software at I saw this utility there and immediately thought of all the good programmers at DC.

I have no need for anything there, but I will transfer the license to this (or any other) to anyone here who would like it. If more than one of you wants one, I'll see what I can do.

Best wishes to you all ...


Here's the program that caught my eye: ($49 value)
click to expand

Self-Extracting Archive Utility (SEAU) builds a professional software installation program in a single compressed executable file.  The installer runs on all of the 32-bit Windows platforms (9x, NT, 2000, ME, XP, 2003).  SEAU offers full support for uninstallation, multiple languages, interface customization, license agreements, readme files, file associations, DOS batch operations, multiple disk spanning, DLL installation, automated installations, patches, expiration dates, shared files, command line archive building, and much more.

SEAU creates executable installation programs that are self-contained in a single file.  A single file is easily downloaded, requires no software such as WinZip to decompress, and ensures that all installation files are present.

The installer's overhead is only 105 KB and the compression engine achieves a very high compression ratio.  You will be amazed at how small SEAU can make the archive.

SEAU can optionally provide support for uninstalling the product.  The user will be able to uninstall the product by one of the following methods:

    * The "Add/Remove Programs" option in Control Panel.
    * A Start Menu shortcut (optional).
    * A Desktop shortcut (optional).

Mini-Reviews by Members / Flock - the Social Browser (beta)
« on: July 10, 2006, 07:10 PM »
Flocking out to get the new browser
review from ClifNotes, Jul 2006

Flock is a browser based on FireFox that is tweaked to let you socialize more easily, and they've released a new beta version. Last week, I got a letter from Flock asking me to try the newest beta version. I tried it out for awhile and now you'll know what I think of it.

After downloading Flock and installing it, I was presented with a wizard that tried to walk me through the setup. Flock uses several free services that allow it to do some unique things. I had a few problems getting through this wizard, mainly because I wasn't signed up for all the services Flock uses. Here are some of the services Flock uses or interfaces with ... Flickr, Photobucket,, Blogger, MySpace, Live Journal,  Ebay, and RSS feeds.

Because Flock is linked in with photo hosting services, bookmarking services, blog services, and RSS feeds, it's really there to keep you connected to your friends and the whole web. Once it's set up, you can drag and drop pictures into your blogs and post them right from Flock. It's very easy when you get used to it. The RSS news feeds are easy to use and add to, so you can keep track of the news or your favorite blogs from your friends.

Yes, this is beta software and I ran into a few bugs. My most serious problem was that Flock would stop working when I was trying to access my Gmail accounts. I won't be using it because of this single issue. That doesn't mean it won't work just dandy for you. Don't let me stop you from trying it. I still think it's very cool.

Here's what they say about the new Flock beta ...
''Welcome to Flock, the safe, spyware free web browser that makes it easier to connect with your friends. With Flock it's a snap to upload, comment, and discover new pics. Read all the news you care about, in one place. Blog freely. Get search results as soon as you start typing in the search box, and much more.''

Living Room / Is it safe to try new freeware?
« on: April 15, 2006, 02:48 AM »
This is an article I plan to publish to an audience of 250,000. Comments / Critique appreciated.

Is it safe to try new freeware?

How do I safely try new freeware? Trying out new free software is sometimes risky. True freeware is typically safe to use. Sometimes greedy or misguided people don't tell you that free means free with added spyware or adware. If you've gotten your software from a trusted source, you won't typically have to go through a lot of preparation. I sometimes try out stuff that I don't really trust, and when that happens, I break out the big guns.

Always be protected

Some safety devices are always running on my PC.
* Firewall - NAT Router
* Anti-Virus - free versions
* Intrusion Detection - WinPatrol
* Anti-Spyware Detection - SpyCatcher Express

Many people recommend using a software firewall and hardware firewall in tandem. This let's you know when new programs try to "phone home" to access the web. Two good free software firewalls are ZoneAlarm and Kerio. I don't use them, but I probably should.

Preparing to install

Before installing a new freeware program I don't trust, I do the following to make sure I remove any spyware or adware I wasn't aware I had.

* Scan my PC with AdAware and SpyBot S&D
* Run a HijackThis log and save the log file somewhere safe
Note: HijackThis should be used with caution. Incorrect use can crash a PC or create a whole series of hard to fix problems.

The above scans give me some confidence that I am malware free before I start installing. After scanning, I also think it's a good idea to set a restore point or make a backup of the system.


* Run Total Uninstall and use it to monitor the installation the new freeware program.

Total Uninstall will allow me to uninstall the files and registry keys the new freeware program puts on my PC. It will work even if the program doesn't include it's own good uninstaller.

After trying out the software

I uninstall any software I don't want, I repeat the HiJackThis scan and compare it with the previous scan to see if anything unusual pops up. Then I might run the AdAware and SpyBot once again just to be safe. If I'm really paranoid, I might search for root kits with RootkitRevealer.

It ain't foolproof

These trials don't always go as planned. A freeware fanatic like me should keep good backups just in case something goes horribly wrong. A safer method to test software is to use a PC that is set up for testing software. This test PC would always start in a known good configuration that is backed up so that it can be restored to the same good configuration after testing. I've been told running new programs on a virtual machine also works well.

I hope some of these ideas or freeware programs help you out if you ever decide to download something off the beaten tracks.

Mini-Reviews by Members / fSekrit in Clif Notes
« on: March 12, 2006, 10:54 PM »
Hi all,

In response to Mouser's suggestion that I take a look at fSekrit ...

I'll be posting this in next week's newsletter. It's apparent to me that I've overlooked this application and it deserves all the praise it can get.

Here's a first draft.

It was surprising to get a letter from my good friend Bill Webb about fSekrit. As usual, he has impeccable taste in software, and he's not afraid to tell you his opinions. LOL

I've got to work in a credit to the author in it. I'll do that soon.
Thanks for the great coding f0dder.

Have fun ya'll,


I've using SC more and more. Two  suggestions.

1. Add "Sendto FTP" with preset FTP settings.
2. In the object capture, it'd be nice to be able to pick out individual pictures on a website.

Maybe a stand-alone tool for the above?

Right now I use a cool little tool to send stuff to my ftp sites.

It works inside the file panel in SC. That panel is one of my favorite features.

Have fun!

Free Offer from ClifNotes, Feb 2006

Notes from Clif

My pbwiki website was given to me free, no money, just a little work helping out here and there. Now I'm going to forward the favor and let you have a chance at a free wiki website like this one for an entire year.

Why would you want a free website that has the following features?

    * 1 Gb image and file space
    * Unlimited number of pages
    * no need to learn HTML
    * no advertisements on your pages
    * can be kept private or made public
    * is password protected on secure https servers
    * your friends can edit it if you give them a password

Tell me why you want it in a short email. I'll read the emails and decide who gets this $50 dollar value.

I'll announce the winner on Feb 19th.

Why would I want to do this? I'm a nice guy, ask anyone. Seriously though, I want to share this great service with everyone.

Don't forget, a premium wiki at pbwiki is not your only option.

Anyone can sign up for a free wiki website with lots of cool features. It only takes a minute or two and you have your own website.

If you want to find out more about pbwiki websites, take the tour.

Hi all,

I recently submitted a mini-review of FLM at ( It seems they like my quick and dirty reviews there, although I can't figure out why. LOL

Keep an eye out, I think it's due to come out next week sometime.

Kudos to the author!

Have fun!

Living Room / Clif Notes Newsletter - October 30, 2005
« on: October 30, 2005, 01:59 AM »
Welcome to Clif Notes Newsletter
October 30, 2005

Hi everyone.

I write this newsletter for fun. I don't get paid for it or ask for donations and I don't spend all day every day making sure every article is absolutely correct. So, if you see something wrong, don't get mad. I publish reviews from myself and other people out there who are just average PC users like you. Will I change that? I think not.

Here are the headlines from this week's letter.

Internet Explorer Fitted-Width Printing
K-Lite Mega Codec Pack - Video Player with Codecs and Tools
PlacesBar Constructor - tells Windows your favorite places
SilentNight Radio - wake up the night with music
Web Album Generator - creates photo albums for your website
Xenu's Link Sleuth - helps webmasters find broken links

10 things you should do to every Windows PC
WP ClipArt for AbiWord and other word processors
How to make screenshots - tutorial from Clif

COOL WEB SITES - your all in one service provider
FutureMe - send emails to into the future
Rollyo - roll your own search engine

Open letter to the chairman of Yahoo!

AddPreview - adds previews of webpages to your search results.


Go to http://freewarewiki....ifsCurrentNewsletter
to see the current newsletter at the Freeware Review Wiki.

If you want a free 2.5Gb Gmail account,
email me: clif.notes @

Get an RSS Feed to my newsletter.
Just copy and paste this url into your feed reader.
What's RSS? 
Get an RSS Feed Reader: 

You can see all my newsletters here:

You can see over 600 of my reviews here:

Have fun,


Mini-Reviews by Members / What is Flock?
« on: October 23, 2005, 05:33 AM »
Taken from my newsletter.

What is Flock?

Website - Download - Freeware
reviewed on 22 Oct 2005

I received an email out of the blue two days ago. It told me I was a "FlockStar", one of only 283 people chosen, and I could now try the developer's preview of Flock. I emailed them back and asked them. "What is Flock?". I've gotten no reply to that yet, but here's what the "About" section of their website says.

Well, we're pretty much a bunch of regular folks trying to shake things up. We started Flock to build tools that empower people and smooth out some of the more hairy parts of living and working online. As it is, we live and breathe this stuff everyday and wanted better tools to do the things that we love doing online.

I've been able to figure out that Flock is a new type of "social browsing" service that lets people share internet links, blogs, and rss feeds.

So, now I'm in the process of installing Flock and setting it up. It hasn't been trouble-free, but it looks like they've made a good attempt to make it as painless as they can.

I installed the Flock browser. The install went well and now I can see that their browser is apparently a customized version of Mozilla Firefox. I like that idea already. Not many browsers allow you to tweak and configure them like FF does. I found a mirror site that allows anyone to download Flock.

Once I launched the Flock browser, it comes up with a home page that runs you through 5 ways to get started using Flock.

  • ... get ready to share your favorite sites: go grab a account.
  • ... get yourself a blog.
  • Start blogging!
  • Check out history right from the search box.
  • Forget old-school bookmarks. Meet Flock's Favorites.

I went out and set up a account. That was easy. Just add a login name and email address.
I already had a blog at but for some reason I couldn't get it to register correctly in the Flock browser's blog setup dialog. So I set up a new WordPress account and Flock had no problem accepting it. Once I had the blog, I tried using the blogging tool built into the Flock browser. I had trouble getting the bulleted list functions to work and it was putting weird empty space in the entry, so I gave up on that. This things not even in beta yet, so I expect a few bugs. I did see something in the blogging tool that looks cool. You can grab other blog feeds or Flikr pictures and drag them from your "Topbar" into your blog post. That actually seems to work. So, now I'm off to grab a Flikr account.
I took a look at the searchable history and the new Flock favorites. I hope they work right because they look pretty cool.

Well folks, that's it for now. I still don't know what I'm going to do with this Flock browser but I'll try to keep you posted as to how I'm using it, if I use it at all. Here are Flock's 13 suggestions on how I can use it.

Late breaking news

Here's a more complete review from


click to expand

Living Room / Clif Notes Newsletter - October 23, 2005
« on: October 23, 2005, 05:02 AM »
Welcome to Clif Notes Newsletter
October 23, 2005

Hi everyone.

This week, I've got a little of everything. I've been busy, but I've managed to scrape together reviews about games, editing web pages, managing email, creating photo albums, organizing your CD collections, creating music, and a few other fun things.

Here are the headlines from this week's letter.

Animal Chase - a game for small and big kids
GoGoData Toolbar - do it all toolbar
Nvu - a complete web authoring system
Picasa - photo album and photo effects
Thunderbird - safe free email client
Visual CD is pretty incredible catalogue software
What is Flock?

Remote Desktop on Windows XP
Why I don't forward those cute chain letters
Virtual Studio Technology plugins - links from a master musician

Best Free Portable Windows Freeware
What can I do with sndrec32?
ezHTMLarea - a remarkable web based html editor
Frapper - map the locations of your group members

Gator VS Snake
Nibbles and Bytes 2.0 Final Launches - new version of free Office Suite

GIMPshop - Gimp puts on Photoshop's clothes


Go to http://freewarewiki....otesNewsletter051023
to see the current newsletter at the Freeware Review Wiki.

If you want a free 2.5Gb Gmail account,
email me: clif.notes @

Get an RSS Feed to my newsletter.
Just copy and paste this url into your feed reader.
What's RSS? 
Get an RSS Feed Reader: 
You can see all my newsletters here:
You can see over 600 of my reviews here:
Have fun,

Living Room / Zaine at BetaNews? Open Office Comment
« on: October 20, 2005, 11:03 PM »
By zridling
posted Oct 20, 2005 - 5:43 PM

So when is version 3.0 due, 2019? ...Other major features in version 2.0 include a completely redesigned interface that provides multi-pane views, floating toolbars and native desktop integration, all which mirrors elements of Microsoft Office.

Wait, I thought the idea is to be NOT like Microsoft Office! WTF, mate?
-BetaNews - 2.0 Final Launches

Good point Zaine. Open Office is playing catch-up most of the time. They do have some features that are better than MS Office. I'm not surprised they'd copy the most popular features.

Living Room / Domain names and how they are set up
« on: October 20, 2005, 10:55 PM »
I saw another discussion of this ...

I have a domain pointing to my host at I have cpanel access. I notice that as soon as you get to mybesthost, I lose the name.

I this a setting I can fix somewhere? I got the domain through Yahoo Domains, not my host.

I'd like to see all of my site using the address. Is it possible?

Living Room / Clif Notes Newsletter - October 16, 2005
« on: October 16, 2005, 12:41 PM »
Welcome to Clif Notes Newsletter
October 16, 2005

Hi everyone.

The web is going to become a real working place for us in the future. I found three good web applications I tried for this newsletter. I think you'll be amazed at some of the free resources that you can use. Microsoft has been worried about this for a long time. Why would you pay hundreds of dollars for MS Office if you can do the same thing online for free?

Here are the headlines from this week's letter.

550 Access Toolbar - a good toolbar with a question
602PC Suite - MSOffice alternative
a-squared free - kills trojans, dialers, worms, and spyware
BitTorrent - a new way to share and download files
Bulk Rename Utility - recommended for file renaming
Easy Message - Unified IM for ICQ, MSN, Yahoo, and Aol
KlipFolio - desktop tool brings the web to you
PhotoFiltre - image tweaking at it's finest
SpoofStick - make sure you are at the right site

Create A Handy Toolbar For XP Desktop Icons
How to burn ISO files

Kiko - your personal calendar online
ThinkFree Office Online - your personal online office
Writely - web based document editor

Take it easy on the cleaner
Yahoo and MSN instant messengers to start talking

Vista Sidebar can be installed in WindowsXP



Living Room / Clif Notes Newsletter - October 2, 2005
« on: October 03, 2005, 02:59 PM »
Welcome to Clif Notes Newsletter
October 2, 2005

Hi everyone. It's been a very busy week for me. My only daughter just got married. I've been gone all weekend and just got back so the newsletter is running late. Everything went fine and I have a son-in-law now. This is my first! There's no telling how long until I'm a grandpa. I'll be ready whenever it happens.

I hope you enjoy this week's letter. Be sure to email me for advice or to yell at me for messing up. clif.notes @

Here are the headlines from this week's letter.

AM-DeadLink - bring out your dead bookmarks
Fraud Eliminator - Anti-Phishing Software Protects Consumers from Fraud
Pivot - Stickfigure animator
Wallpaper Master - hoard your wallpapers
WinRet Lite - Backup and restore for Windows, Outlook, and IE.
WorldTime - What Time Is It In Coober Pedy?

And the sign said - customize your own signs and other objects
Optimize Guides - Guides for Windows 2000/XP

Don't Click It - Innovative Website
PeanutButterWiki - a review by Brandon Watts

Pbwiki adds a little color


Go to
to see the current newsletter at the Freeware Review Wiki.

Living Room / Clif Notes Newsletter - September 25, 2005
« on: September 25, 2005, 06:10 PM »
Welcome to Clif Notes Newsletter
September 25, 2005

Hi everyone. This week, I tried two programs that I won't recommend. I was disappointed. At least I can save you the download time and headaches. I usually point you to a better program when that happens. Cool?

I hope you enjoy this week's letter. Be sure to email me for advice or to yell at me for messing up. clif.notes @

Here are the headlines from this week's letter.

Opera - fastest internet browser, easy to use
Pepys - a wiki-like personal notebook
Seterra - learn geography
SystemSherlock Lite - captures changes to your system
Total Uninstall - keep your system clean
XnView - award winning image manager
XstreamRadio - tune in and record

Real-Time HTML Editor - see your HTML come alive
Rules of Protection - avoiding spyware and viruses
Spam Control - a collection of tips from Hoax-Slayer

Google MyWay - make your own Google search page
Qualys Browser Checkup - find the holes in your browser
Top Freeware - making the top freeware easy to find

Microsoft's nightmare inches closer to reality


Go to
to see the current newsletter at the Freeware Review Wiki.

If you want a free 2.5Gb Gmail account,
email me: clif.notes @

Have fun!


Living Room / Clif Notes Newsletter - September 11, 2005
« on: September 12, 2005, 12:04 AM »
Hey, looks like I've got another review from this place. This could become habit-forming.

Welcome to Clif Notes Newsletter
September 11, 2005

Hi all, Another week has gone by. The weather here in Ohio has been fantastic but a bit dry.
The corn isn't nearly as tall as it should be and summer is almost over.

Here are the headlines from this week's letter.

CamStudio - Software Presentation Tool
DittoClipBoardExtension - keeps all your clipboard history
EverNote - takes jotting down information to a new level
FolderShare - Find, Access, Share your files anywhere
NWS Radar Monitor - the storm is coming
Pocket Divx Encoder - easy creation of divx from dvd
PixResizer - picture resizing specialist
TugZip - a full featured archiving tool

Advanced Mailto Encoder - adds many options to an email link
Configuring Firefox and Mozilla to open pages in new windows/tabs
The Spyware Warrior Guide to Anti-Spyware Programs

Tas Independent Programming - independent source of freeware
SourceForge - home of open source software
The Portable Freeware Collection - a great place for great freeware

Interview With WinPatrol Author

Feedback and Other Stuff

Go to
to see the current newsletter at the Freeware Review Wiki.

If you want a free 2.5Gb Gmail account,
email me: clif.notes @

Have fun,


Living Room / New newsletter from me
« on: September 05, 2005, 04:09 AM »
Welcome to Clif Notes Newsletter
September 4, 2005

Hi DonationCoder's. Here are some freeware reviews and other stuff from this weeks letter.
I think you all might be familiar with one of these. LOL

EasyCleaner - an easy way to unclog your pc
Ewido Security Suite - Trojan and Spyware Tool
Form Letter Machine - don't keep repeating yourself
Google Talk - a new instant messenger
Messenger Plus - not very funny if you aren't careful
WinPatrol - puts you back in control of your PC
WinSonar - protection against unknown programs

Infected Podcasts - risky listening on your PC
SpamhOle - spam goes down the hole
What is Intrusion Detection Software? -
Browser Speed Comparisons - who's got the fastest web browser?

Dunscraft's Bird Search - bird watching made easy
ScanIt - can you safely surf the big bad web?
SaveFile - lets your friends download your files

Wake Up Drug CX717 - now I can surf all night

Feedback and Other Stuff

Go to
to see the current newsletter at the Freeware Review Wiki.

I just saw Form Letter Machine mentioned in the most recent Lockergnome's Window's Fanatic newsletter.  :up: :up:

Be prepared to get a little busy here.   :)

Congratulations and best wishes,

Clif &

Living Room / Cliff's Notes and The Form Letter Machine
« on: August 31, 2005, 11:04 PM »
The FLM gets :up:  :up: from me. Here's a review I'll be publishing soon.

By the way, how do I register it?

Clif &
Devoted to promoting Freeware and Free Information

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