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  1. Find out if Windows file paths exceed the 260 character limit There is a good chance that Windows users come into contact with the operating system's 260 character limit for paths. A common scenario may occur when files get deleted on the system. If the path exceeds the limit, the files cannot be deleted and Windows will display an error message. Microsoft did add an option to Windows some years ago to extend the path limit, see Microsoft ends the 260 long path limit (sort of), but support has not been added globally up until now. In other words: there is a chanc
  2. ScreenTemperature is an open source tool that can help reduce eye strain by lowering the color temperature of your monitor Working on a computer for a long time could be one of the reasons why you may have trouble falling asleep. That's because your monitor like most displays emits bluelight, which in turn may affect your sleep pattern. Most smartphones come with a built-in option to automatically reduce the color temperature, e.g. at night. Even Windows 10 has a built-in Night Light setting that is quite good. If you want more options, the mos
  3. View your computer's hardware and software details, generate a HTML report with HiBit System Information When you want to upgrade some of your PC's parts, or replace something, there are some bits and pieces of information that you may not know but need to; this is easily solved with the help of some third-party tools. HiBit System Information is a freeware utility that gives you nearly everything you may want to know about your computer's hardware and software. The program's interface has three panes: Summary, Hardware and Software
  4. Get even more Windows cleaning done with Cleanmgr+ and Burnbytes combined Cleanmgr+ was launched by its developer in February 2019 as a disk cleanup alternative as Microsoft revealed plans to deprecate the classic Disk Cleanup program of the Windows operating system to focus on cleanups in the Settings app. BurnBytes was released in June 2020, and it too was designed to be a clone of the Windows Disk Cleanup tool. One of the main differences between the two programs is that BurnBytes is a community project. The latest version of Cleanmgr+ in
  5. No, we're a chemist. We don't sell that sort of patch. Bork!Bork!Bork! Welcome to another in The Register's series of computers (largely Windows-based) doing the most annoying of things in public places. Today's entry takes us to the delightful Swiss city of Geneva, home to the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN) and many splendid cheese-based dishes (the ubiquitous fondue springs to mind, as does la Croute au Fromage) and the excellent Longeole. It is also home to its fair share of chemists, including this example snapped n
  6. Add custom shortcuts and commands to Explorer's context menu using Open With++ Though Windows 10 comes with built-in options to open basic file formats, users may want to use a different program of their choice. For example, some may like to play their music in Foobar2000 or AIMP, videos in VLC, or images in a fast image viewer such as XnView. The problem begins when you have multiple programs that can open a specific file format. Windows lets you set only one program as the default handler for the format. For the rest, you'll have to rely on the "Op
  7. Inbox Notifier displays a notification on your desktop when a new mail lands in your Gmail inbox Gmail is probably the most popular email service available today. Most users use the mobile app for managing emails on their smartphone, especially on Android devices. But now with everyone working from home, having a desktop program that notifies you when a new mail arrives, can be very useful. While it is possible to use dedicated programs such as Thunderbird or Outlook, some users prefer something simpler. Inbox Notifier is an open so
  8. Restore windows to their saved size and position with Window Resizer There are many ways to reposition the windows of programs that you use. Of course, the most popular way is placing the windows manually with a click and drag, and by using Windows' useful Windows-key plus arrow key combinations, e.g. to quickly place two windows side by side on the monitor. Programs like ScreenGridy can make this job slightly easier, but you'll still have to move the programs on your own. Window Resizer is a tool that can simplify the task even fur
  9. The choice will not really be Windows or Linux, it will be whether you boot Hyper-V or KVM first, and Windows and Ubuntu stacks will be tuned to run well on the other. There have been a string of pieces wondering aloud whether Microsoft is going to rebase Windows on the Linux kernel in the future. I have a unique perspective on Microsoft's Linux involvement. I help deliver Ubuntu on Windows Subsystem for Linux in my job at Canonical. I regularly talk to many Microsoft employees working on Linux and various open source projects. I also get briefings on Micro
  10. Last month there was excitement when the source code for Windows XP was leaked online. The big question, however, was how quickly Microsoft would act to have it disappeared from the web. The partial answer is that the company took 10 days to have one public repository taken down. And that was hosted on Github, a platform owned by Microsoft itself. When Microsoft’s Windows XP launched in 2001, it was somewhat of a revelation. Built on Windows NT and a clear step up from the consumer variants of Windows that preceded it, the OS reigned for yea
  11. A week ago, KrebsOnSecurity broke the news that someone was attempting to disrupt the Trickbot botnet, a malware crime machine that has infected millions of computers and is often used to spread ransomware. A new report Friday says the coordinated attack was part of an operation carried out by the U.S. military’s Cyber Command. On October 2, KrebsOnSecurity reported that twice in the preceding ten days, an unknown entity that had inside access to the Trickbot botnet sent all infected systems a command telling them to disconnect themselves from the Internet servers the
  12. Microsoft is changing the way it handles Windows release notes Microsoft is making some changes to the way it handles Windows release notes, the company announced today. For starters, it's combining support.office.com and support.microsoft.com into one site, and of course, that means that other changes are on the way. Microsoft says that combining the two sites will make it easier to publish release notes more quickly. One thing that's changing is the URL structure, as the KB ID will always be prominently displayed on the page. The firm noted in t
  13. Find and delete duplicate files with the help of Exact Duplicate Finder How often do you clean up your downloads folder? I often find multiple copies of the same installer/portable archive, and sometimes several files named setup.exe. Deleting these files and those in other folders is a time-consuming process. Tools like Exact Duplicate Finder can be used to make it easier for us. The program is portable, and the archive that contains 2 versions, one for Windows 7 and the other is for Windows 10. I tested the latter.
  14. Windows by the numbers: Real gains or just an illusion? A sudden spike of Windows' overall share led to increased user numbers for both Windows 10 and Windows 7. NiroDesign / Getty Images Increases in Windows 7's share, Windows 10's, too, were more mirage than material last month. According to California-based analytics company Net Applications, Windows 7 grew by half a percentage point to finish September with 22.8% of the global personal computer operating system share. However, when calculated as a portio
  15. View your Wi-Fi signal strength, auto switch to the better connection with Wifinian Is your wireless internet connection performing optimally? Does the signal seem lower than usual, or do you experience disconnects, differences in download and upload speeds, or other connectivity issues? While speed tests and ping checks can help determine your connection's status, it is a bit difficult to check the quality of your network's strength (between the computer and the router). You may quickly find out the Wi-Fi signal strength using a si
  16. Translate Microsoft Office documents or text from any word editor, and get dictionary definitions instantly with GT4T Working with documents that are in a foreign language? Translating is no easy task, it requires precision, and you may be constantly looking up words that you don't know or are unsure about. [PLEASE NOTE: This is not freeware. After a trial period you must either (1) switch to the feature-limited free version or (2) pay ~$58 to continue using the full version. The site points this out poorly.] Opening up the browser
  17. Digital Clock 4 displays a highly customizable clock widget on your desktop; also supports alarms, hourly chimes and more Gadgets were a really cool aspect in Windows 7 as they added functionality and style to the desktop. Microsoft decided to retire the gadget functionality citing security issues as the main purpose for the decision. Windows 8 and newer users can get gadgets back through third-party applications. Some of the most commonly used gadgets were clock widgets. Digital Clock 4 is a freeware tool that displays a highly customizable clock wi
  18. It's official: x64 emulation is coming to Windows on ARM The idea that Microsoft was going to support AMD64 (or x64) emulation on Windows on ARM has been floating around since November of last year, when we exclusively reported that the company was working on it. Now, it's official, the firm announced today. As it stands right now, ARM64 PCs can run three kinds of apps: 32-bit native ARM apps, 64-bit native ARM apps, and 32-bit emulated Intel (x86) apps. Soon, you can add 64-bit emulated Intel (x64) apps to the mix. Performance on emulated apps isn't as good
  19. BalloonRSS displays a notification on your desktop to alert you when a new article is available in an RSS feed RSS feed readers are a great way to get notified about new articles on your favorite sites. It's fairly instantaneous, plus your inbox doesn't get cluttered with newsletters. Sadly, there aren't a lot of choices for a desktop RSS reader program. I've been using QuiteRSS for a long time, and haven't found anything close to it, not that it needs a replacement anyway because it's a fantastic reader. If however, you want a mini
  20. Edit the tags and covers of EPUB books with EPUB Metadata Editor Most people who read e-books must be familiar with the EPUB format. It is a very commonly used format, and is smaller in file size than other formats such as PDF documents. If you use e-books, you may have noticed that they contain tags similar to audio tracks. These tell you the book's name, author, year of publishing, genre and other information at a glance. Not every eBook has this information though. Sometimes you may not like the data provided, or you just want to edit the tags to
  21. Happening in plain sight with Proton, WSL and Edge-for-Linux, says open source advocate Open-source software advocate Eric S Raymond has penned an argument that the triumph of Linux on the desktop is imminent because Microsoft will soon tire of Windows. Raymond's argument, posted to his blog late last week, kicked off with some frank admiration for Windows Subsystem For Linux, the tech that lets Linux binaries run under Windows. He noted that Microsoft is making kernel contributions just to improve WSL. Raymond is also an admirer of softw
  22. AlephNote is a lightweight client for Simplenote, Standard Notes and also works as an offline note-taking program About five years ago, I switched over from a mobile app called ColorNote to Simplenote, because it was open source, and also available on three platforms that I was using: Android, iOS and Windows. While I primarily use it as a journal app, the desktop application was a handy way to send links, text snippets from my computer to my phone. When I came to know that the service has a web version (accessed from the browser), I uninst
  23. SwagLyrics displays the lyrics of the song that's playing in Spotify desktop and the web version Spotify added support for Live Lyrics a few months ago (at least in some Countries). I don't like the way it has been implemented. First there is the gigantic text which looks odd, but the main problem with it is that when you click on the mic button the program loads the lyrics in the main pane. If you click on anything else, the window changes, so you can't browse/discover music and have the lyrics displayed at the same time.
  24. The Redmond-aligned can try the Cupertino-spawned lingo thanks to a Googler's intervention A Google programmer has made tools for Apple's Swift programming language available to developers using Microsoft's Windows operating system, a move likely to rekindle hopes that Swift, open source since 2015, will become popular beyond the macOS and iOS ecosystems. On Tuesday, Saleem Abdulrasool, a software engineer at Google Brain who joined the Swift Core Team in January, announced the availability of a new set of downloadable Swift toolchain images for Wind
  25. Microsoft announces new platform features coming to Windows Today at its Ignite 2020 conference, Microsoft actually has some Windows news to share, and it's all about developers. New versions of products are coming, such as WinUI 3 Preview 3, which lets you make apps for ARM64 now. First up is MSIX. Developers can now deploy files to a shared container instead of a standalone single MSIX container. This is a big deal for apps that rely on shared files or registry settings. MSIX apps will also be able to automatically update; devs will just have to
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