Category Archives: Software

[How To] Use and Install Windows XP In VirtualBox

Revisions:
5-6-09: Initial update.

5-7-09:  Added pictures, and additional formatting to the article.


Did you know that you can run a virtual machine, such that you can run say Windows XP inside of Windows XP? Not ready to install Linux on a separate partition and go dual boot? No problem! Install it in VirtualBox!

VirtualBox is an open source, and freeware application that lets the user to do virtual machines easily and painlessly. This is great if you are a developer and want to develop programs for other operating systems, or perhaps testing a program you are not willing to install on your main HOST operating system.

Since the virtual machine is independent of the HOST operating system, you will be able to transport the virtual machine easily from one PC to the next thanks to the portable hard drive system.

Installing VirtualBox

First of all, you need to download VirtualBox.  You can get it from their website at www.virtualbox.org

Once you have downloaded the appropriate version for Windows, you can install it, as shown in the following screenshots below:

vb1

Click next, and you will get to the screen as shown below:

vb3

Make sure to have both VirtualBox USB Support enabled as well as the VirtualBox Networking so you can use the usb and networking within your virtual machine.

Read on to understand how to use VirtualBox. Video included!

How to Jailbreak the iPod Touch 2G [2.2.1]

Hey guys.

So if you own an iPod Touch 2G (i’ll be lazy and might write touch), never fear, the jailbreak is finally here!

Ok, that’s not strictly true. The jailbreak has been around for awhile, but it was the tethered version, which required you to connect your touch to the computer every time you wanted to reboot.

A few days ago, someone was finally able to crack the final layer and make it such that you don’t need to tether the touch anymore. A few hours later, a program called QuickFreedom was built as a GUI to allow jailbreak.

All you will need is:

-QuickFreedom

-iPod Touch 2.2.1 firmware, which you can download online, through iTunes, or through QuickFreedom itself.

-LIBUSB (which you can install through QuickFreedom)

-an iPod Touch 2G (obviously.)

QuickFreedom works in a 5 step process, it’s actually not too hard to do.

Step 1:

You can download and install all the software you need from QuickFreedom, just make sure to refresh or restart the program when you do that so you can go onward, otherwise you will be stuck here.

Step 2:

Select your options and create a custom firmware. You can save it wherever you want, and you can add a custom bootscreen as well. When I did this, I didn’t use a custom bootscreen, but it should work fine.

Step 3:

This is the pre jailbreak. This was the hardest step for me, I don’t really know why. The whole trick is to get the touch into DFU mode. You can follow the DFU instructions, but it seemed almost impossible to use that, so I just ended up doing the DFU in various ways until I got it. I left iTunes open for the entire process, so you can use it as a check to see if you are doing it properly. It is my guess that QuickFreedom does not detect the DFU perfectly everytime since it told me that I was in DFU but would not let me proceed. Keep at it, you’ll eventually get there.

Here what I finally did at the end. It doesn’t matter if the iPod is on or off.
To do the DFU, hold the Power and Home buttons down for 10 seconds.
After 10 seconds, release the Power button and continue holding the Home button for 8 to 10 more seconds. At some point, iTunes should find an iPod in recovery mode unless you disconnected the iPod. I orginally tried doing this by turning off first, but in the end, I’m not too sure if that really mattered because my touch was in some limbo state between going on and off.

After you DFU, start the pre-jailbreak. WAIT. This is a mistake I almost made and got really lucky on. The log is there to help you, so read it! Do not go onward until you read that the patch was installed correctly. I almost started the next step before the patch was completely installed, this might screw things up, so just be careful.

Step 4:

Using iTunes, install the new software firmware that you built. Hold SHIFT and click Restore in iTunes, and find the custom firmware you built. Let the software install. It might take some time.

Step 5:

You are done! The touch should be jailbroken with Cydia and Installer. Have fun!

Some interesting notes:

I was not able to install more than 9 full pages of apps. I think that’s the limit. At 16 apps per page, thats 144 + 4 (from the dock) to total at 148. I haven’t tested this out, but you can probably use categories from Cydia to put all the apps in folders and get around this. Apps will still be there, but they are hidden away and will only appear if there is some more space (aka deleting old apps).

Thanks to the guys who made QuickFreedom and for http://proudofmylife.net, whose pictures I just copied because I was too lazy to screenshot my own in XP with Jing. If there is a problem, contact us.

Anyway, if you have questions, feel free to ask away! This worked perfectly for me and I’m happy with the results.

Voltaire.

Drivermax backs up drivers

One Line Purpose
This is a freeware application that can import/export or snatch existing drivers for those who reinstall their operating system (OS) or lost their driver disk.

Impressions
While perusing the internet for good software applications to try out, I came across this app at Download Squad claiming that it can back up and restore drivers.  Therefore, I downloaded the program, installed it, and backed up my currently existing drivers.

However, I had some mixed feelings when I imported my drivers into my newly installed Windows XP.  If there was anything that one should do when importing drivers is importing the ones that do not come prepackaged with windows such as printer, chipset, graphics card, etc.  Consequently, Drivermax froze on my dual core computer and left me hanging for a good 10 or so minutes when the site claims that it would only take up 5-10 minutes.  Hence, I resorted to my original driver discs to repair the loose ends from Drivermax.

Another qualm that I had with this program is that it prompted me to register this product with a free key supplied by its proprietary website, thus making it a trial version for 30 days despite it being free.  Also, the diagnostic test it does in the beginning is horribly ugly when it could be easily replaced with a progress bar.

In the end, if one would want to use this program, know exactly the drivers that need to be backed up and everything will be fine.  As for me, I think I’ll stick to driver cds.

Drivermax: http://www.innovative-sol.com/drivermax/

7 Web Tools for Web Developers

Well, we certainly hope that everyone is enjoying the Olympics thus far. We support Team USA of course.

Now, there are many web developers out there of all levels. Each developer uses their own tools. Of course, it’s always good to have a large number of tools in the chest. Here are some good tools any dev. should use.

1) Notepad++
This is like a pumped up and pimped out Notepad. You can code in many languages, ranging from HTML/XHTML to PHP, CSS, Java, Javascript, Python, and others. It is a lightweight program that has syntax highlighting, multiple files in a tabbed file system, multi-language support, macroing, page preview, and TextFX, which lets you do things like run HTML Tidy. Now you will never need to suffer through the lack of features in regular old Notepad.

2) Codetch Plugin for Firefox
This puppy is a must-have for users who want to edit code on the fly. This tool is like Dreamweaver except free. It loads extremely fast (I notice no lag time) and it can edit code permanently for any file on your server. This makes validation very simple since you can fix an error right away because the code changes permanently.

3) VIM
This tool is called Visual Editor Improved. It is friendly and easier to use than its original, Visual Editor (VI). VI and VIM are modal editors meaning that the same key can have more than one job depending on the mode you set. It isn’t that intuitive, but it is amazing with efficiency once you get used to it.

4) Emacs
This program is sort of like VI in that it was (and is) more of a Unix/Linux program. However, this program is pretty beast with its custimazations. It has a powerful macro feature like Notepad++, can view and edit the file system, manage remote files, browse the web, check e-mail, and others. This program takes some getting used to. There is a simpler to use version called Xemacs out with standard menus and icons.

5) HTML Validator Plugin for Firefox
This simple plugin simply validates the XHTML on the current website with the W3 Validator. It lists each error with error messages, help on correcting said errors, and syntax highlighting of the error. It also has HTML Tidy to clean up your page.

6) Web Developer Toolbar for Firefox
This toolbar lets you validate your pages, edit pages (not permanently, but you can see what the change looks like), view your page in different sizes and resolutions, and get a speed report. This tool is pumped up with many different little settings to play with that will make any dev’s job easier.

7) Firebug Plugin for Firefox
This plugin lets you inspect you code, view code as an outline, and debug your code. It shows you what parts of your code are affected by lines earlier on. Changes you make are not permanent, but you can view results immediately after a refresh. It structures the code very nicely for ease of use.

Here are 7 non-IDE tool that anyone web dev should use to save money, space, memory on their pcs while speeding up their work.

Enjoy!
Voltaire

Seven Free Alternatives to Nero Burning Rom

Don’t get me wrong, Nero is one of the best CD/DVD programs out there.  However, ever since 5.0, Nero has always been bloated with extra features.  Whenever I install Nero, I basically uncheck everything and only need Nero Express/Nero Burning Rom.  Everything else I can care less. 

Now there are Nero lite packages available on torrents that basically take Nero and strip it down to its bare components.  Guess how large these download packages are?  Try 80 megs.  I scoff at this file size.  Thus, here is an alternative list of CD/DVD recording programs, and the best part they are free!

1) CDBurner XP

2) InfraRecorder

3) DeepBurner

4) Ultimate CD/DVD Burner

5) Burn at Once

6) Burn Aware Free Edition

7) ImgBurn

Now I’m not a douche bag, so I am going to quote you the source of my 7 free alternatives from this other blog.  Enjoy!

Source

Frets On Fire – The Free Guitar Hero

Frets On Fire- Pose

Frets on Fire

“Frets on Fire is a game of musical skill and fast fingers. The aim of the game is to play guitar with the keyboard as accurately as possible.” – Source

Frets on Fire is an amazing program that allows you to play a Guitar Hero like game on your computer without spending $80-100 on the guitar and game. This game is free and guess what! You can put ANY songs you want on it! I have found a good collection of songs you can download for it and the link is below. As for the game, a Free download can be found below as well.

FoF Download

A Good Collection of Songs to use with FoF

Enjoy rocking out on your keyboard!

~Musicmasteria

FREE PS3- Check This Out!!!

[App] IMO.IM


Sick of Meebo with its heavy traffic and cluttered interface? Don’t want to see those annoying ads? Now there is an cleaner and faster alternative, which is “imo.im” The creators behind this IM service are simply ingenius. Even two of them are from Google. The main highlight of this online IM service is the fact that one can have a group session across all messenging platforms. Another cool feature is that one does not even have to create an account to log onto multiple IM platforms simultaneously, thanks to a feature called “linking accounts”.

Although it does not have all the features that common IM clients offer (such as logfiles, smilies, etc) this app has plenty of room for improvement and successes. Also, the clean interface and lack of other things like hyperlinks and smiley buttons prove to be very pleasing to the eye.

official site: http://imo.im

[App] ClearType Tuner Powertoy

ClearType Tuner is, by far, the best thing one can do for his or her eyes when reading text on an LCD monitor or any type of monitor. Its purpose is to make text more readable and easier on the eye by allowing the user to go through a series of text selections and pick the one that is the most readable. By doing so, the program will automatically adjust the text to your previous selections. Of course, the example that Microsoft previews to the viewer is atrocious, but the subtle changes can make a big difference over time. ClearType Tuner can be done through Microsoft’s online site or with the installer that it provides to you. Due to the dimensions of this blog, it is simply better to view the picture on the former site.

ClearType Tuner: http://www.microsoft.com/typography/cleartype/tuner/Step1.aspx

[How To] Make WinRAR Not Recognize ISO Files

This post is dedicated to commentor “Harrison”, for it is about time I talk about this than never at all. As we all know, lots of files on the Internet that can be downloaded will need to be extracted by some kind of unzipping utility.

There are a lot of good programs like 7zip, Winrar, WinZip, and WinAce. I use WinRAR because its easy, and I have a free corporate edition from the company a long time ago. 😛

Now, the problem I see occurring in the PS2 threads are people who download an ISO file, and by the act of God, believe that what they have isn’t an ISO file, but a regular RAR or similar compressed file. Well, guess what? You have WinRAR associated with your ISO files, and because of this, you are unzipping the ISO file when you really shouldn’t.

This is how you can fix the situation:

1) Open WinRAR.

2) Go to Options -> Settings.

3) Go to the Integrations tab.

4) Unselect ISO checkbox if it is checked and select OK.

WinRAR Settings

Now you are done! No more confusion. Good luck on your unzipping journey. 😛

Foobar2000 Updated!

Foobar pic
The legendary Foobar2000 has been updated to 0.9.5 with a whole bunch of new features that originally required additional plugins and customization. For those unfamiliar with Foobar, it is a freeware audio player for windows. Although the core is closed to the public, it allows for extensive customization with programming. The most notable improvement is foobar’s revamped display interface, because it now has UIElements built-in which includes tabs, album art, and album list support. The program presents itself as a very minimalistic player, but can be edited into a very slick audio player. With the addition of themes, WYSIWYG interface, and the scratchbox (allows the user to create a theme without tampering the current one), one can only expect good things in the time to come.

For more information: http://www.foobar2000.org/releasenotes-095/releasenotes.html
Website: http://www.foobar2000.org