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Messages - Dirhael [ switch to compact view ]

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Living Room / Re: Show us the View Outside Your Window
« on: September 01, 2008, 11:21 AM »
Sorry for the not-so-good quality of the pictures, didn't have my camera at hand so I used my phone. I took the first 4 pictures while I was walking my dog at a mountain which is around a 15 min. walk from my house. The last two I quickly snapped from my house after I just got inside.

General Software Discussion / Re: Graphics corruption -- Why?
« on: August 24, 2008, 09:25 PM »
OK. Thanks for the advices guys. It seems pretty reasonable.
So I'll try reinstalling my drivers -- something I'm always a bit afraid to do... I often experienced severe problems when tinkering with video cards drivers.
DriverCleaner is trustworthy?

Don't know how the free older version holds up today as I'm using the paid (frequently updated) one, but trustworthy? Absolutely, been using it for years :Thmbsup:

General Software Discussion / Re: In search of ideal backup utility
« on: August 23, 2008, 08:03 PM »
Btw, I review the series of screen shots by Dirhael and I find TitanBackup supports grouping.
Ah, why didn't you tell me at the beginning...

Seriously, do you know whether is it unicode aware and able to backup ADS?
If so, then it is one big step closer to my 7 needs, I wonder if the company gives discount to user who switch from their competitors...:)

Unfortunately, it does not support unicode at all. Well, you are able to select the folders/files but they won't be backed up if they contain Japanese/Chinese/Korean (what I used for my tests) characters. Doesn't matter if you just use the program to copy files from location A to B on the same filesystem, it still can't handle them, and if you use the zip functionality it creates broken archives.

General Software Discussion / Re: Name The Best UNZIPPER!
« on: August 21, 2008, 10:59 AM »
WinRAR has this auto-rename feature

So does 7-zip  ;)

Most archivers have that functionality, but that's not really what he's asking for... ;)

Of course you understand that I am not talking about replacing or renaming everything, but renaming readmes only.

General Software Discussion / Re: In search of ideal backup utility
« on: August 21, 2008, 09:29 AM »

Now, looking closer at my own utilities I find

supports registry operations as well as being a true backup utility.

Hi cmpm,
Can you post a screen shot on the main interface.
Is wizard like interface is the only choice (just like Genie Backup Manager), if so, I can save my time to try it.

Here's a few screenshots where I'm creating a regular backup job.

By styles I'm assuming you're taking about visual styles and not the toolbar skins that styler also does? If so, the best alternative (if you don't mind patching a few system files) is the freeware tool VistaGlazz (the latest "beta" version supports SP1). It's a one-click solution and couldn't be easier.

If you don't like the idea of having system files modified the only other alternative that I can think of is TuneUp Utilities 2008. It works much the same way that Styler does in XP by having a small service running in the background that modifies the relevant system files in memory instead of actually touching the files themelves. This program is not freeware though, and it does a lot more than just allowing you to run 3rd party visual styles.

There is also yet another alternative that works in both XP and Vista, and that's Windowblinds. There's a ton of styles available for it, but it uses its own theme engine/system so it's not exactly the same. It's not free though but it allows you to do much more advanced themes than Microsoft's visual styles does, including things such as toolbar buttons (like styler). Personally I prefer the first method I mentioned as it's a permanent and free solution that requires absolutely no extra resources from your system.

Re-reading your post I now see that you're just talking about styling the toolbars. Well in that case the only product I can think of that does this is Windowblinds. You can of course manually edit explorer.exe and other system files using a resource editor, but that's hardly something I'd suggest to any regular user.

General Software Discussion / Re: I am stumped ...
« on: August 12, 2008, 08:03 PM »
its not the jpg that is messed up.  I did d/l tweakui and tried the rebuild icons but it didn't change anything.

Not sure what to try or where to look  :(

Did you reboot after rebuilding the cache? If not, it's worth a try. Also, as Curt mentions in his post you could try taking a look here (my screenshot is of the *.doc filetype but the same applies to any other):

General Software Discussion / Re: I am stumped ...
« on: August 12, 2008, 07:31 PM »
You probably just have to rebuild your icon cache. The easiest way to do this would probably be to just use the Tweak UI powertoy for XP. Alternatively, kill explorer, delete %localappdata%\IconCache.db & reboot (not always required but it's probably a good idea anyway).

Living Room / Re: Whats on your desktop?
« on: August 08, 2008, 08:58 PM »
A few months now since my last desktop screenshot, so here's a update :)

(As always, click for full view)

EDIT: And here's a "dirty" version with my custom foobar2000 layout:

To quote someone in the comments section of that (very vague) article:
Why do I think that it requires
1. Disable UAC
2. User intervention
to work in the first place.
I really do think that you'd have to be running the browser with administrative rights for this to have any effect.

@mouser: I think it's very bad practice to require administrative rights after installation of any programs unless it's absolutely impossible to avoid. It's not a question of safe/unsafe software, the problem is that as soon as you run anything with administrative rights it has full access to anything on your system. Should this program then have any vulnerabilities at all, malware have the possiblity to use this vulnerability to gain full access to your system.

I also would like to point out that Windows most certainly is secure enough to prevent "evil" programs from causing any major damage, without any additional security software. The default permissions need some tweaking to really secure the system, but it is no less secure than *nix or OSX if it's setup correctly. Now this isn't to say that you don't need any anti-virus etc. because just as with the other OS's I mentioned, your user data is still open to attack.

A really great document/article to start out with is the following one that I'd recommend anyone to read even if they don't plan on implemementing the suggestions in their own setup :Thmbsup:

Ruin a malware author's whole day with a Software Restriction Policy!

Thanks Dirhael, for pointing that out. You're correct indeed, WinPatrol is not a real HIPS. But I believe Comodo Firewall Pro is. I use it and it regularly bugs me with messages about changes to my registry, just like a real HIPS would.

CFP, or rather the Defense+ component, is indeed a proper HIPS that appears to be quite popular (can't really beat the price ;)) and solid. I tested it a while back, and came to the conclusion that it doesn't really suite me. It felt like I was using the digitized version of the boy who cried wolf. To be fair, this is a common problem with any traditional HIPS, but at least some of them have tried to reduce the number of useless prompts by implementing things like community databases (tracks how people answers, then makes suggestions based on that) or add some form of behavioral analysis. My preferred way to deal with vulnerable applications (most programs facing the internet and other applications I'm not yet sure is safe to install/use) is to either sandbox them completely (SandboxIE) or use a policy sandbox (Defensewall or GeSWall). In extreme cases when it's very likely that installing a certain program may cause problems due to potential software conflicts, I may even use a virtual machine like VMware or Virtualbox to test before considering installing it on my main system.

Ah, thanks for the update - my GMail Speeddial entry hasn't been updated in a while and I never checked if they had stopped blocking, glad to see they have. I still wish Google engineers could write better standards-compliant code...  :'(

Indeed, it would have been great if they did. It's strange though that for a company with so many great projects running that they simply do not care to have something even resembling clean & valid code. Just the simple fact that they don't even bother to specify a doctype makes me cringe
Well, not that there even is a doctype for the mess they're writing at times (well most of the time actually)...

Not a bad tool. But, as the author himself pointed out on the site, it does nothing to prevent the change, only informs you of it. Hence this program should not be used as a replacement for a HIPS tool like Comodo Firewall Pro or WinPatrol.

Just wanted to mention that WinPatrol is not a HIPS, it just watches certain areas of your system for changes. Even the "real-time" watching of the paid version doesn't really operate as you'd expect [fully real-time].  For instance, if you have it running, install some new software that requires a reboot and just after installing answer "yes" to a reboot prompt when they ask you to, it's very likely that WinPatrol won't notify you about the fact that changes have been made to your startup programs or services until after the reboot and by then the new programs are already running. It's a great tool, but not really for security reasons (I mostly use it to clean up certain system areas and delay startup programs).

Here are some links worth reading about GMails terrible IMAP implementation:

and some info from google on their IMAP differences:

Not sure how much they've managed to fix since that critical Wired article from IMAPs inventor came out...

Are you using 9.5x? I have no problems logging in to and using GMail, but I force it to use the new interface:

See if that works better than the original ui=1

You don't need to change the url anymore if you're using Opera 9.5+ because Google is no longer blocking you out of the new interface if you are, as you can see from the relevant source:

Code: Javascript [Select]
  1. if(window!=top){top.location=location.href}(function(){if(location.href.indexOf("nocheckbrowser")!=-1){return}if(!is_browser_supported){location="?ui=html&zy=b"}var agt=navigator.userAgent.toLowerCase();var wk=/webkit\/([^ ]+)/.exec(agt);var g=/rv:([^;)]+)/.exec(agt);var ie=/msie (\d+)/.exec(agt);var opr=window.opera&&parseFloat(window.opera.version());var sup=ie&&ie[1]>=7&&!opr||navigator.product==
  2. "Gecko"&&g&&g[1]>"1.8"||wk&&wk[1].split(".")[0]>"522"||opr&&opr>=9.5;if(!sup){location="?shva=1&ui=1"}var c="jscookietest=valid";document.cookie=c;if(document.cookie.indexOf(c)==-1){location="html/nocookies.html"}document.cookie=c+";expires=Thu, 01 Jan 1970 00:00:00 GMT";if(agt.indexOf("msie")!=-1&&document.all&&agt.indexOf("opera")==-1&&agt.indexOf("mac")==-1){eval('try{new ActiveXObject(agt.indexOf("msie 5")!=-1?"Microsoft.XMLHTTP":"Msxml2.XMLHTTP")}catch(e){location="html/noactivex.html"}')}})()
They're still sniffing user agents like crazy, but at least it works now. Their IMAP implementation unfortunately still sucks though. I've had the same problem as mentioned in the original post, but not just with Opera. The main difference I've experienced with Opera M2 and other clients like Outlook & Becky! is that they [the other agents] don't (usually) give you a proper error message, they just stop recieving emails until you restart the clients. Other than that, they all [usually] eventually break (if you let them run for a while) just don't know that it has happened. For this reason I've decided to go back to POP3. At least it works, despite all the other drawbacks.

I don't think they will change public perception much with this campaign, but Vista is nowhere near as bad as many out there seem to think...and yes, many of those bad-mouthing it have not used it. Also, the Windows Vista you are using today is a far cry from the version first released. Could it have been better? Well sure it could, but for the most part I do prefer it to XP (for one thing, it's a whole lot better at multitasking than XP ever was). The fact that it actually deals properly/natively with wireless networks is also a big "+" in my book, because XP never did.

the true test of a 'anti-malware protection system application' is the ability to adequately differentiate between a malware and normal working programs. e.g. here is a message i got from Ashampoo AntiSpyware on a PC i was trouble-shooting.
 (see attachment in previous post)Note: Real VNC is legitimate remote admin tool that is widely known and respected.

While the message it displays is very poorly worded, if you look at the classification of the detected item you'll see that it does not detect it as spyware but rather as riskware. Most respectable AV/AS programs will let you enable/disable those categories. Attached is a screenshot from Avira AV of some of the categories that aren't malware but can get detected if you want to, and I know from having used it in the past that NOD32 have these (or similar ones) as well.

With that said, to keep on topic, I fully agree with Carol here; I wouldn't want any of these products from PC Tools on my system even for free. If you're going to test out their firewall, be sure to have a backup disk image ready just in case. Bad experiences with BSOD's and a resulting unbootable system with it in the past.

as long as you don't have a NVIDIA GeForce 8/9 card (NVIDIA have been writing some really <insert not-so-positive adjectives here> *nix drivers for these cards when it comes to 2D and it doesn't look like it's about to change anytime soon).
;D not so long ago, ATI was the black sheep...

Indeed, but then AMD bought out ATI and released open specifications for many of their cards in addition to also starting making better drivers themselves. NVIDIA on the other hand seems incompetent when it comes to dealing with their more recently released cards (anything GF8+), which is strange considering that the drivers for their older cards are for the most part very good.

KDE 4.1 is out, AFAICT:

...and it's quite good, even great in some areas, as long as you don't have a NVIDIA GeForce 8/9 card (NVIDIA have been writing some really <insert not-so-positive adjectives here> *nix drivers for these cards when it comes to 2D and it doesn't look like it's about to change anytime soon). They are especially broken in anything KDE4/QT4 :( Let's just say that I'm not purchasing a high-end NV card again (I grabbed a 8800 when they first were released based on NVIDIA's history of actually having good *nix support) when it's time for a upgrade because at this point I get the impression that they don't even care.

General Software Discussion / Re: Large Text File Viewer
« on: July 31, 2008, 01:31 PM »
My recommendation would have to be EmEditor.
The new version of EmEditor allows you to easily open huge files - up to 248 GB or 2.1 billion line - with only a little memory. The new version optimized the speed to open a huge file, so it can open a huge file much more quickly than previous ones.

It's by far the fastest text editor I've tested on Windows, and the fact that it deals perfectly with unicode files is a big + for me. Well worth the money :Thmbsup:

Should free be a requirement, there's always Vim. Yes, it most certainly is an acquired taste but for just viewing files it should do just fine.

Even more interesting. Could you elaborate? Thx. :)

Looks like cthorpe beat me to it :D

My problem with Matousec is that he isn't really testing firewalls, he's testing several variants of HIPS products. It's telling that several (well at least two as far as I know) of the high-ranking products in his tests doesn't even include proper firewall functionality at all. This in itself wouldn't bother me were it not for the fact that he insists on calling it a "firewall challenge." These tests haven't really helped us as users of firewalls all that much either (if at all). His tests have caused many developers to focus like crazy on developing functionality to beat the tests, making the firewalls just about useless for anyone without enough technological insight to know how to answer the overload of (usually worthless) questions it presents you with.

14 hours left...

GAOTD: http://www.giveawayo...story-binder-xe-291/

I am not sure whether to mention this or not, but it seems to me that the wrapper system used by GAOTD is easily circumvented, since it unpacks the contents to a TEMPorary location. Keeping a local copy of the unpacked file would allow re-installation of the application in the future.

On this specific offer it doesn't really matter. They give you the registration key in the readme.txt file, and this key works just fine with the updated 2.92 version of Liquid Story Binder downloaded from the official website :)

Dirhael, thanks again.

Just happy to share what I find, the discount is all thanks to Gizmo not me :)

Looks like he has updated the page a little, as it now says that the offer expires July 31, 2008 so there's still some days left to register and use the coupon.

Looks like you can now (don't know how long this will last though) get a full year subscription worth $40 for free by using this coupon over at Gizmo's Tech Support Alert :Thmbsup:

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