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About syntax010

  • Birthday 04/19/1977

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  1. My vote....get ready for this. Zone Alarm Free 3.7! Why? This was the last good free edition release of the Zone Alarm firewall, before they tried to expand and cover everything from ads to spyware and viruses. This version was released well before the "suspicious" behaviors between ZA and many P2P programs started happening. It's fast, stable, very light on system resources, and still gets rated as a perfect stealth rating via Shields UP!! Suprisingly, it also functions perfectly with Service Pack 2 for XP, despite the fact it was released months before SP2 was even being developed. Why not Sygate? Simple. The program control is difficult to navigate for blocking inbound or outbound connections for individual programs. The best features are only availible on the pro version. It is a lot more resource intensive than ZA 3.7. Also, and possibly the best reason to not choose Sygate....they were recently purchased by Symantec, i.e. the company that creates the Norton line of products. The Norton firewall has gotten consistantly bad reviews...its a resource hog...doesn't have the best blocking capabilities...etc. etc. etc. You can download a copy of the free ZA 3.7 from Here
  2. Despite the massive number of new people who are flocking to the Beta of Microsoft's anti-spyware program.... I have some concerns. It seems that those concerns are justified. Before you fall all over yourself to proclaim the new MS(Microsoft) Anti-Spyware Beta as the holy grail of PC might want to give this a read. M$ Antispyware Article This is a very informative article that covers exactly why the MS Anti-Spyware program is no longer one that you or I can trust. It even goes into some good detail as to exactly why we can no longer trust what was once a great product. I have tested the MS Anti-Spyware Beta, and honestly, it's left me feeling more frustrated at the fall of a once great product, than anything else. The program blatantly disregards any customized user settings. Even if you tell it not to, it still shows pop-ups every single time that it allows something. That's right, every single time that it allows something to happen, a nice, informative, and annoying pop-up comes up to let you know what a good job the program is doing in allowing things to happen. I can possibly understand a pop-up, if user requested, when the program blocks something.....but a pop-up EVERY time that it allows something? That's completely ridiculous. It's also a feature that will cause many games that run in full screen to crash. For some reason, it also ignores user settings to not run a spyware scan of your files and folders whenever it suits the program's whim to do so. The so-called "Spynet" that you can subscribe to, supposedly for faster updates to newly found one that I don't trust as far as I could pick up and throw Bill Gates limo. Why? Because I do not trust the findings of untrained individuals, with no professional experience, to decide what is spyware and what is not. Sadly it seems that the war with spyware, unlike the war against computer viruses, is a war that is being lost. Even the best rated commercial anti-spyware program will only detect about 50-60% of the spyware out there. Sadly, a lot of those programs are unable to even remove some of the spyware that they detect. Freeware alternatives aren't much help either. Even with Spybot Search and Destroy, Ad-Aware SE Personal, and Spyware Blaster combined, you still miss a lot, and I mean A LOT of spyware that is out there. Even with the latest definition files for each of those programs, you're still not fairing too well at finding, removing, or blocking spyware. Is there a solution? It's hard to say. Part of the problem all comes down to the motive of any make money. Why be in business if you aren't trying to earn a profit? Sadly, some companies will pursue profit by any means necessary. Does this include intentionally changing their spyware definition files to allow this product or the company can get a check from an advertising firm? It's scary to think of, but given the proof documented in the above link, it doesn't seem that far fetched. I also feel that part of the problem has to do with how spyware and/or adware is classified. They are classified as an entirely different animal from a computer virus. You won't find Norton, McAfee, or any of the other anti-virus giants, intentionally allowing viruses onto your PC. Why? Because computer viruses, regardless of their intended function, are ALL blatantly harmful in one way or another. Adware is just a program for putting advertising in front of potential customers. Spyware is just a program that gathers "research" information on a user to better be able to create new programs tailored to their needs....right? So then, what is the problem? Those don't sound too harmful. WRONG. Not only can spyware or adware cause all sorts of problems, but worse still they can lead to serious crimes such as identity theft. There is simply no justification whatsoever, for any company to resort to spying on people, and blatantly invading their privacy. Likewise, there is no justification for harassing people with unwanted advertising.
  3. I am curious which of the following combinations might be the most successful on an X-Box? My X-Box is already mod-chipped. I'm trying to find some way to use an oldschool "vintage" type gamepad on the Xbox that will be usable with emulators on the X-Box itself. 1.) USB Adapter for Xbox™ (female) combined with USB Nintendo NES Controller 2.) Dreambox Converter (Boom) combined with PS2 RetroCon Control Pad 3.) Magic Box (Third Party) combined with SuperPad8 for Saturn (InterAct) Thanks in advance for any feedback anyone is willing to give on this.
  4. The Ultimate Media Information List This post to to try to help the many people that seem to have difficulty being able to find missing information or items for their media. This can be anything from downloadable labels for CDs that they burn, to case inserts for DVDs, or correct tag information for MP3 files. If people are willing to assist on this project, please submit a valid working link to your favorite sites for finding media information. If you can, add a short description of the site and what it is used for (i.e., "This site is great for downloading CD labels", or "This site has really accurate information on correct MP3 tags,"). Feel free to list more than one resource. The goal here is to collect the absolute best of the best locations, on the Internet, for anyone who needs to find any missing information, graphics, track listings, lyrics, etc. for any of their media. If there is any specific software that you use for searching and replacing missing items or information, please feel free to mention it. However, if you do, please include a valid working link to where the software can be found, along with a short description of what you use it for. - note - this collection is for official information, labels, etc....not for sites or software on creating your own generic labels, inserts or anything similar In simple terms, if you just burnt a backup copy of a new CD, this list would help you find where you can download and print out a label for the disk itself that is identical to the original CD label, as well as helping you find the original cover arts, track listings, etc. Album Cover Art Downloader: Here's a program that will semi-automatically download album cover images for your music collection. All you have to do is point it at the root of your music directory and for each directory, the program will download a set of corresponding (well, best guess) album covers from the Internet, from which you can choose one that suits your fancy. Currently supported image providers: * * Yahoo! Images * Wal-Mart * At least the following programs make use of the cover images: * KDE, GNOME and others that follow the .desktop-entry spec * Windows XP Explorer * Windows Media Player 9+ * CDcover, an XMMS plugin * CoverViewer, another XMMS plugin. * wmalbum, a WindowMaker dock applet * Various WinAMP plugins, for example Cover TAG. In addition, some portable music players can show the cover image if it is embedded in the MP3 file. - note - Some programs that rip CDs to MP3 will download various files associated to that CD. If you run into any errors where Album Cover Art Downloader tells you it is unable to set a cover art, or that a file already exists.....set your folder options to show hidden files/folders....odds are there is a hidden file called folder.jpg or cover.jpg that already exists. Just delete them and run Album Cover Art Downloader again. If you still run into an error, make sure the folder/files your trying to use aren't set to "read-only" in their file or folder properties. Album Cover Art Downloader
  5. The previous poster is quite correct. All Windows versions have a horrible problem with leaving garbage all over your system. Not only does this leave the registry bloated, and thus makes your system operate more slowly, but it can cause serious errors in how well your system functions. As mentioned before, I really like Lexun RegScrubXP. It's an amazing registry cleaner, and it's completely free for personal use. The cleaner for the registry in CCleaner is pretty good, but I've found you have to uncheck the box for cleaning unused file extensions. The reason is that CCleaner assumes that a file association to a program it doesn't recognize as an error, even if the association is correct. As i've said to others, CCleaner is notorious for detecting image associations with the free image viewer Irfanview as being an error. It then "cleans" them and leaves your pictures with no program associated to use or open them. One way to solve this would be some sort of "white-list" feature that would enable a user to specify custom applications or associations that CCleaner doesn't have the ability to recognize, and force it to ignore them while doing its cleaning.
  6. I am curious if there is anywhere online that you can find information as to what the location of chapters for a DVD movie would be? As in like Chapter 2 being at 15:00 on the movie, chapter 3 being 25:00 on the movie, etc....I have a handful of movies that I am converting from VHS to DVD, and i'd like to be able to create chapter points in the final product so that I can skip scenes the same way you can on the actual DVD? Any advice for where information could be found for this?
  7. I've been playing around with vintage game systems for some time now. I'm a big fan of vintage gaming systems, like the NES, SNES, and Sega Genesis. I've seen the occasional pirate cartridge for sale on various websites, that seem to be hacks of original NES, SNES or Genesis game cartridges that allow for more than one game to be placed on a cartridge. I am curious, does anyone know where someone would find information on doing this? Please don't misunderstand me, i'm not asking how to pirate games or game systems. However, the technology of the SNES and Genesis have been around a long time now, the technology for the original NES even more so.... Storage space size, the average ROM for an SNES or Genesis game is around 2MB or so, and the average ROM for an NES game is around 500k or so...those are tiny file sizes by comparison to today's storage standards. They barely take up any space at all on a hard drive, especially one that is many gigabytes in size. I'm trying to find answers to any of a few of these questions. If anyone can help me out and offer some thoughts, advice, or feedback, it would be greatly appreciated. Please understand that these questions are in regard to a situation of already owning the actual game system and already owning legitimate copies of the games in question. Since the technology in question for each of those game systems is quite old by today's standards, i'd think something like this might be possible? Is there anywhere that you could order a blank cartridge that would be playable on a NES, SNES or Sega Genesis? Is there any known way for ripping the ROM files from the original game cartridges and then placing multiple games on a single cartridge? Where would you find software for doing that? if it's even possible? Would it be possible to simply erase an existing owned cartridge and then somehow expand its storage capacity so that you could put as many games onto it as the storage space would allow? there a place where one could custom order a cartridge with modern storage capacities? If this is for some reason not possible, is there any way to get an original NES, SNES or Genesis game system to load games from an external hard drive or over a LAN from a shared folder? I know that through emulation, those games and systems can easily be played on a PC. I also know that you can modify the original gamepads to work via USB on a computer. However, my goal is for playability on a TV and with a home theatre. I'd really rather not have to go out and get over 25' of audio and video cable to run from outs on my PC to my TV. I know that it's possible to run those emulators on an Xbox or on a PS2 if the system is modified. However, emulators aren't always exactly perfect, and one of the biggest reasons i'd prefer to use the original systems.....modern gamepads aren't even close to the smooth feel and capabilities that were offered with those vintage gamepads. As an example, just trying to play Street Fighter with an Xbox or PS2 gamepad is nearly impossible. Since both types of gamepads have significantly raised and less smooth d-pads than any of the vintage system pads used, trying to pull off the fluid motion needed for doing special attacks or combos takes a real effort and usually doesn't work the best. Unfortunately, to my best knowledge there is no way to make an original NES or SNES or Genesis gamepad actually work on an Xbox or a PS2. The closest i've found so far is a retropad by MadCatz. That pad is layed out just about like what would be perfect for an NES or SNES game but doesn't even come close to the configuration of the Genesis gamepads, seeing as those had 3 buttons side by side, and eventually 6, but no triggers.
  8. I find that Lexun RegScrub works very nicely, and it's completely free for personal use on top of it. I've tried CCleaner, and it left me with nightmares. I for one, really enjoy using certain open-source and/or freeware applications. Yet, no matter what settings I tried on CCleaner, it ALWAYS detected file associations for picture files that I had set to irfanview as being an error that it NEEDED to fix. So, even after running CCleaner a number of times, I either had the same 50+ errors if I didn't let it clean the irfanview associations, or no errors if I let it do the clean, but then no working file associations for my picture files like .jpg, .bmp, etc. Out of commercial products, I like Registry Mechanic the best out of what i've tried. However, much like an Anti-virus or Anti-spyware app, each program is written to detect certain things in certain ways. That is why you will ALWAYS find things that need "cleaned" or "fixed" or "wiped" in your system when you use more than one app to do the same thing. Part of the problem being that the registry is a horror house full of nonsense, and only Microsoft really knows what some of the things in it are for, or why they are needed. That's why some cleaning/scanning/wiping/repairing programs will appear to function correctly to fix your system, and yet leave you with odd errors that make no sense after they "fix" things. Incidently, as a bit of PC trivia for you, originally Norton Anti-virus detected Windows 95 iteself as being a virus back when the OS was first released. Kinda leaves you wondering if Windows has ever actually been an operating system, or if it is simply the worlds most advanced computer virus that just happens to emulate an operating system...
  9. I am curious if anyone could help me figure something out. What would need to be edited on Windows XP Pro SP2, in order to add the command "select-all" to the right click menu? i.e. you have a folder open with a lot of files that you'd like to highlight and select all at once, instead of having to go up to the Edit menu, you could just right click anywhere in that open folder and choose "select-all" to highlight and select everything in that folder.
  10. Thanks for the tips and info. I really have no serious need to combine them, but it is a heck of a lot more convenient to have all the files on a single DVD-R, rather than having to swap CD-R diss during installs.
  11. I am working on a custom install disc for XP and I was curious if anyone knew what steps would be needed to fully integrate the Longhorn Transformation pack into a XP installation disk? The whole thing, i.e. the icons, boot screen, Welcome Screen Login Window, visual style, etc.. and if possible to have XP use one of the included visual styles in the pack as its default instead of Luna? Thanks in advance for any help on this! p.s. I'm not 100% this is the right section for post this, mods please move if an section elsewhere on the forum is better.
  12. I have a copy of XP Media Center Edition on 2 CDs. I am trying to figure out if there is a way to combine both CDs to a single DVD-R? If so, what files would need to be updated, and in which ways so that when the installation calls for the 2nd disc, it would continue the install from the DVD?
  13. Well, for's been proven that the largest number of websites and/or downloads that will infest a system with spyware are sites used by software pirates and free porn sites. Steer clear of those and other so-called "whatever you want for free" sites and you usually won't have any spyware problems at all. As far as protection goes, i'm a big advocate of freeware and open-source software offerings...the only downside to the idea of an open-source spyware/adware program is that with the source being there for all to see, anyone who makes malicious spyware or adware will know exactly how to get around the defenses that particular program is trying to offer. You should also pay attention to dates on definitions lists. Spyware Blaster used to be good, but the latest definitions file for it is months old....much like an anti-virus, if your protections aren't current, you may as well not being using one. Spybot S&D has been proven to be quite dated as well in both its definitions and its capacity to detect and remove spywares. AntiSpyware is one type of software that I honestly feel people should pay for, especially since it takes a HUGE effort on the part of any reliable company to stay on top of the ablility to protect and clean spyware as dozens of new varients appear each day. Out of personal experience I find Spy Sweeper and Spyware Doctor to be 2 of the absolute best around for both protection and system cleaning. If you want free, as far as what is out there today, my best suggestion would be the latest Ad-Aware SE + Spyware Guard. Spyware guard is made by the same company as Spyware Blaster, but instead of using a very outdated list of spyware definitions to "immunize" you from infection, it gives quality real-time protection from new ones getting onto your system. Keep in mind that Microsoft, as a company, has made many enemies over the years in one way or another. Just by getting on the Internet using a Microsoft OS, Like Windows XP, your going around with a neon flashing bullseye on you. Yes there is spyware that can infect Linux, and yes there are viruses that can as well. However, you don't see Linux plagued with them, because it isn't seen as "the enemy" by large groups of malicious computer users, like Microsoft is.
  14. Sorry, I missed the sticky on this topic already. Mods please delete this post.
  15. I am working on a project for creating a set of custom DVD movies. I am looking for suggestions for the best software to use for this purpose. What follows is the best description I can come up with for what I'm wanting to do. Anyone who can offer advice of software to use for this or who might be willing to offer suggestions for how to go about using it for this, would be greatly appreciated. I've got a collection of cartoon episodes that are currently in .avi format. I'm wanting to edit them and put them onto a DVD, but in a specific way. I'm wanting to edit the episodes as follows; 1.) I'd like to edit the intro on the episodes so that only the first episode on the disc shows the intro to the show, and each episode after that goes directly to the beginning of its episode without showing the intro. I'm also wanting to edit the episodes so that only the last episode on the disc shows the ending credits. So for example, if I put 5 episodes on the DVD, only episode 1 would show the cartoons introduction at its beginning and only episode 5 would show the ending credits. 2.) I'd like to arrange the episodes so that each episode on the disc is seen as a different chapter so that if you press the skip/next button on the remote it will advance to the beginning of the next episode, and if you press the back/previous button on the remote it will go back to the previous episode on the disc. 3.) I'd like them arranged so that if you start episode one, without stopping or returning to any menu, the DVD will automaticly progress into episode 2 at the end of episode 1, and then onto episode 3 at the end of episode 2, without any user interaction. So there is no need to stop the DVD and return to the main menu to choose the next episode. 4.) I'd like to be able to put together a professional quality looking menu which would give the user the ability to directly choose to watch any particular episode on the disc of their choosing, or simply start at episode 1 which would progress on its own through episodes 2, 3, and so on as if the episodes were chapters in a movie, but still leave the option of exiting any episode to go back to the main menu and directly choosing a different episode from the menu to watch. If possible i'd like the menu to look fairly professional with a high quality picture and to have each episode listed in order by its name on the menu. 5.) I'd like assistance in finding and putting together a good quality cover for the DVD case itself as an insert, where the front of the DVD case cover would show a high quality picture and the name of the cartoon, with the back of the cover also having a high quality picture that would have a highlighted area listing the names of the episodes on that particular disc. Likewise a quality image to use for the disc lable itself to be printed out and put onto the DVD disc. Anyone who has any suggestions or advice for how i'd go about this, please feel free to either reply to this post, private message me here, or use the instant messenger screen names listed in my sig to IM me about it. Would greatly appreciate the assistance. Thanks in advance.