DoubleClicks.info About Computers for Newbies & Everyone Else

January 7, 2014

2013 Sites in Review, Part 1

I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year since we last talked.  I wanted to say, "Thanks!" to all of you readers who support the "Double Click" column by reading and writing over the past 12 years.  It is very much appreciated.  Please keep it up.  I always enjoy hearing from you.

It is the time of year when I review all of the sites mentioned during the previous year.  As always, have fun remembering, discovering, or rediscovering all the info! 

If the site addresses are too long to type I have shortened them using "bit.ly" for print, so the links may not look quite right.  Without further ado…here they are in their order of appearance with short descriptions of each.

  • Online music streaming sites;  "Slacker Radio" (slacker.com), "Spotify" (spotify.com), "Maestro" (maestro.fm), Last.fm and the one I like best…Pandora (pandora.com).   These are accounts for listening to most any type of music imaginable. 
  • Google Musicmusic.google.com.   Google’s music site is similar to above; however, you can also upload up to 20,000 of your own songs and listen to them online from any device.
  • Daily News-RecordDNROnline.com.  My flagship newspaper, read it often! 
  • Double Clicksdoubleclicks.info.  This column’s site, read it often, too!
  • Portable Appsportableapps.com.  A site where you can get apps that are… well, that’s obvious.  
  • Microsoft Officebit.ly/1kJ3oK4.  You know this one, "The" most popular office suite of programs.
  • Libre Officelibreoffice.org.  One of the two most popular free office suites.
  • Solutosoluto.com.  One of many ways to speed up your computer and keep all of your applications up to date, not just the Microsoft ones. 
  • Lynda.com. A paid online training site for many different applications used today.
  • Microsoft Office Trainingbit.ly/1cBOoM9.  Good free office training.
  • YouTube.com – among millions of other videos you can find excellent Office training videos created by people like you and me.
  • Google.com – the most popular search engine.
  • Gmailgmail.com.  Google’s branded email.
  • A Toy Train in Spacebit.ly/1bHdbc3.  A dad uses a Raspberry Pi computer to take his son’s toy train into space and return with some great video of the ride.
  • Newsblur.com, Feedly.com, TheOldReader.com, Pulse.me and Flipboard.com.  Several of the many popular RSS feed readers to replace the dead and gone Google Reader.  They vary for mobile platforms and web viewing.

Well that takes us through the middle of 2013.  Check out part two of the year in review next week.

June 4, 2013

Soluto

Your computer continues to start up slower than you remember it doing when you bought it.  You may have already run Disk Cleanup, Error-checking and Defragmentation but things still frustrate you about its operation.  Wouldn’t it be nice to have some "anti-frustration" software on your side?

Well, there is!  Soluto has been available for several years and I was fortunate enough to have gotten in at the beginning.  And yes, as if you had to ask; it is free. 

Soluto simply monitors your computer’s start up boot sequence and suggests ways to speed it up.  It also comes with a few other neat features.  Your computer may already run pretty fast as mine did but as you will see below it still sped my computer up.  Some people have reported going from more than seven to less than two minutes to boot their computers

After the Soluto install is complete (which can take five or ten minutes depending on your internet connection and computer speed) a browser window will open that says, "The PCs info is on its way…"  This indicates that the application is just about finished installing and it is gathering info about your computer.  When that is done the browser will display information about your computer, including any applications you have that need to be updated.  I suggest that you should always install the latest apps when you can.  It will give you a better program and more security.  You can choose to install all of those programs at once or individually.  I just installed Soluto on a relatively new computer and it found four applications needing updates.  How cool is that? 

imageIt will also give you information about Apps that have "frustrated you" by messing up even if you did not realize they had, information about your internet browser, your antivirus and windows updates and it will list out a lot of helpful info about your hardware.    

The part I like best is what Soluto does after you reboot your computer.  I suggest you do this when Soluto "tells" you to after your recommended installations are finished.

Once rebooted the software will give you a graphic of all the programs that start in the background, some of which you may have no idea are even there.  They are then rated as to those you cannot remove from the boot, those you may not want to remove from the boot sequence and the "no-brainers" which should be removed.  It gives you details on each program so that you can decide what to do.  It even gives you the percentage of other users who choose to get the program out of the boot process.

On my notebook it advised me that it took 2:40 to complete the start up with 82 programs starting.  The number one, no-brainer it suggested removing was Snagit (techsmith.com).  When I hover over the advice window it tells me what Snagit does and that I could choose to either delay or pause it.  If delayed, the program will start up after everything else is finished starting on your computer.  If paused, a program will only start when I manually start the program. 

I ended up removing all but one of the "no-brainers" and several others that were suggested.  My computer now boots in 1:53 minutes with only 67 applications running.

If your computer hangs up or frustrates you while Soluto is running you can right click on its icon and choose, "My PC just frustrated me."  It will then see if it can figure out what bugged you, look for a fix and send that info to the Soluto database to be used to help others.

Soluto is always improving and coming up with new ways to make your computer life easier. 

After you have rebooted a few times you may want to hide the Soluto graphics from showing on your desktop.  If so, right click on the Soluto select Advanced, Show Readiness Monitor, Never Show.

June 29, 2010

Stop Computer Frustration

Filed under: Columns — Tags: , , , , , , — Ron @ 4:41 am

Your computer continues to start up slower than you remember it doing when you bought it.  You may have already run Disk Cleanup, Error-checking and Defragmentation but things still frustrate you about its operation.  Wouldn’t it be nice to have some "anti-frustration" software on your side?

It may just be here now!  Soluto created by a new software company in Israel has been available since the end of May, 2010.

What Soluto currently does is relatively simple.  It monitors your computer’s start up boot sequence and suggests ways to speed it up.  I run Windows 7 which already runs pretty fast but as you will see below it still sped my computer up.  Some people have reported going from more than seven to less than two minutes to start their computers

After you install Soluto it will ask you to restart your computer so that it can begin gathering information.  Once rebooted the software will give you a graphic of all the programs that start in the background, some of which you may have no idea are even there.  They are then rated as to those you cannot remove from the boot, those you may not want to remove from the boot sequence and the "no-brainers" which should be removed.  It gives you details on each program so that you can decide what to do.

On my notebook it advised me that it took 2:40 to complete the start up with 82 programs starting.  The number one, no-brainer it suggested to remove was Snagit.  When I hover over the advice window it tells me what Snagit does and that I could choose to either delay or pause it.  If delayed, a program will start up after everything else is finished when you are using your computer.  If paused, a program will start when I manually start the program as it may not need to run all the time in the background.  I chose "pause" so now it runs only when I need to use it. 

I ended up removing all but one of the "no-brainers" and several others that were suggested.  My computer now boots in 1:53 minutes with only 67 applications running when it starts.  Many of them also took up RAM running in the background so now I should get a slight increase in overall speed, but not so much that I notice.

If your computer hangs up or frustrates you while Soluto is running you can right click on its icon and choose, "My PC just frustrated me".  It will then see if it can figure out what bugged you, look for a fix and send that info to the Soluto database.

Soluto is brand new software and is still improving.  It will continue to run as a background service which watches your PC while it is running.  It will be analyzing any frustrations that hit your system and trying to figure out "why" by comparing information they continue to gather from other users.  Over time Soluto may be able to suggest solutions you can resolve with just a few mouse clicks. 

After you have rebooted a few times you may want to hide the Soluto graphics from showing on your desktop.  If so, right click on the Soluto icon and uncheck "Live Boot Progress".  If you want to see it again later just recheck it.

Powered by WordPress

%d bloggers like this: