iTunes Crashes on Windows 8.1

iTunes Crashes on Windows 8.1

Wow, it’s been a long time since I’ve posted here! =P

Anyway, I just stumbled upon this fix for iTunes crashing almost immediately after launch on Windows 8.1 (might be triggered by launching the iTunes Store?), from a discussion board post on Apple Support Communities by MarkJaco:

MarkJacoDiscussionPost

I had this issue. Try copying QTWinMovie.dll from c:\program files (x86)\common files\apple\apple application support to c:\program files (x86)\iTunes. This solution fixed it for me and was easy!

Hopefully this will help you out as well! =)

MiniBin!

Update!

e-Sushi has posted a new version of MiniBin after all! You can find the new version at e-Sushi.net (http://www.e-sushi.net/minibin), or you can still download the old version (3.8.3.0) below.

One of my favorite Windows utilities, MiniBin, has just been retired by its developer, so I’m creating a post here to make the download available after its binaries get pulled from the original website.

MiniBin-3.8.3.0-Setup.zip

(Thanks to Mike Edward Moras for making such a great app!)

Details from e-sushi.net:

MiniBin is a free recycle bin for your Microsoft Windows system tray area; the area next to the clock in your taskbar.

Please note that the MiniBin project has ended. This means: no more updates and no more support. Yes, I know… but it had to end somewhere. MiniBin was first published in 2004 and enjoyed updates until 2012. As it’s bug-free and feature-complete in it’s current state, I decided it’s time to move on to new horizons.

For the time being, you can still download the final version of MiniBin, the recycle bin for your system. But this download will vanish into the void within the not so far future. So, get it while it’s still available!

The Best Time Tracking App for Windows

This looks pretty fantastic. Do you have any suggestions for time tracking apps – for Windows, Mac, or Linux? I’ve had great luck with RescueTime, but I can definitely use something like Klok for tracking time on consulting projects manually.

The Best Time Tracking App for Windows

There are a number of different ways to track your work time, but for the majority of people, something like the free, cross-platform Klok is perfect for managing your workday, seeing how long your projects take, and tracking how you spend your time.

via The Best Time Tracking App for Windows.

XnView: Free Image/Photo Viewer

Excellent (free) photo viewer – beats out all the others by far, IMO:

xnview

XnView is a utility for viewing and converting
graphic files.

It has the features :

Import about 400 graphic file formats
Export about 50 graphic file formats
Multipage TIFF, Animated GIF, Animated ICO support
Image IPTC, EXIF metadata support
EXIF auto rotation support
IPTC editing
Resize, rotate, crop support
Lossless rotate & crop (jpeg) support
Adjust brightness, contrast…
Auto levels, contrast
Modify number of colors
Apply filters (blur, average, emboss, …)
Apply effects (lens, wave, …)
Fullscreen mode
Slide show with effects
Batch convert, batch rename
Create WEB page easily
Screen capture
Create contact Sheet
Create or edit Multi-page file (TIFF, DCX, LDF)
TWAIN & WIA support (Windows only)
Print support (Windows only)
Drag & Drop support (Windows only)
Compare image side by side
Filmstrip layout
44 languages support (Windows only)
And many many other things…
No Adware, No Spyware

XnView is provided as FREEWARE for private non-commercial or educational use (including non-profit organization)

via XnView Software – Free graphic and photo viewer, converter, organizer.

Lifehacker – LightBox Makes Simple Touch-Ups a Snap

I’m downloading this now – looks very cool. =)

Windows only: LightBox is an extremely user friendly tool for editing photos when you need more than a simple crop and resize but less than a full out Photoshop massaging.

How user friendly is LightBox? When you run the program you’re presented with a sidebar of common tasks like color balancing and red-eye removal. Mousing over each of them provides not only an explanation of the tool but sample pictures showing the results and every tool within the editor itself has mouse over tips. Once you’re actually editing your image you can easily—as seen in the screenshot above—divide the image to show how the alterations are effecting it compared to the original. The divided and side by side comparison feature is great for photo enhancements where your goal is to make the picture more appealing without giving it an unrealistic appearance. If you need additional functionality, there is a Plus version available for $19.95 which adds on features like masking and auto color correction. The basic version of LightBox is freeware, Windows only.

via Lifehacker – LightBox Makes Simple Touch-Ups a Snap – Image Editing.

jQuery fadeIn/fadeOut IE cleartype glitch

Thanks to Benjamin Michael Novakovic for this fix!

While using the jQuery  javascript library today at work, I noticed a glitch under IE7. When fading a html node with the .fadeIn() and .fadeOut() functions in jQuery, IE drops the windows Cleartype rendering; which results in very ugly text. This problem appears to be very common, but no one has a nice solution for the problem.

The most common way to solve this problem is by removing the filter CSS attribute. In normal javascript, it would look like this:

document.getElementById('node').style.removeAttribute('filter');

and in jQuery, it would look like this:

$('#node').fadeOut('slow', function() {
   this.style.removeAttribute('filter');
});

via Benjamin Michael Novakovic » jQuery fadeIn/fadeOut IE cleartype glitch.

Microsoft Support: Console (CMD) Fonts

Update: You can use the following registry script to automate this process – just copy/paste the code block below into a text file called “Add Consolas to CMD.reg” and run it:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Console\TrueTypeFont]
"0"="Lucida Console"
"00"="Consolas"
RegEdit -  Console Fonts
RegEdit - Console Fonts

If you’d like to use an alternative console font for CMD.exe in Windows, check out the scoop from Microsoft Support on how to set it up…

The fonts must meet the following criteria to be available in a command session window:

  • The font must be a fixed-pitch font.
  • The font cannot be an italic font.
  • The font cannot have a negative A or C space.
  • If it is a TrueType font, it must be FF_MODERN.
  • If it is not a TrueType font, it must be OEM_CHARSET.

Additional criteria for Asian installations:

  • If it is not a TrueType font, the face name must be “Terminal.”
  • If it is an Asian TrueType font, it must also be an Asian character set.

In Windows 2000, the installation of Console Fonts is no longer automated. This was done to give the console window greater stability in multilanguage environments. An unsupported work around is available by adding the following font specific entry:

Add a String Value
Name=00
Data= “Font Name” (without “”)

Into the following registry:

HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Console\TrueTypeFont

The name needs to be incrimented with “0” for each additional font. The Data entry needs to match the font’s entry in the following registry location:

HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Fonts

via Necessary criteria for fonts to be available in a command window.

And, if you’re itching to find a nice replacement for Courier New or Lucida Console:

  • Consolas:
    If you have Windows Vista or windows 7, this is already installed, otherwise you’ll need to download the PowerPoint Viewer 2007 from Microsoft to get the font legally. (As an added bonus, the rest of the Windows Vista fonts come with it – see here for details: Download Windows Vista Fonts from Microsoft Office Website)
  • DejaVu Sans Mono:
    This font comes pre-installed with many current Linux distributions and is released under a free license, which makes this font arguably the best of the bunch. Find it here: http://dejavu-fonts.org/wiki/index.php?title=Download
  • Droid Sans Mono:
    Straight from the Android SDK comes the Droid Sans Mono font, which is quite similar to the DejaVu Sans Mono font listed above. You can grab this from the Android SDK download, or you can get it directly from the damieng blog here: Droid Sans Mono great coding font

Prevent Startup Programs from Running Twice in Windows XP

Finally! This problem was bugging me for so long – I just now thought to research it and found this article. Very helpful!

Prevent Startup Programs from Running Twice in Windows XP

A way to solve the problem of programs in the Startup folder being executed twice on Windows XP logon. The applications may appear doubled in msconfig.

Problem

Under Windows XP, programs placed in the Start MenuProgramsStartup folder may be running twice. This occurs even though only one shortcut or icon for each program appears in the Startup folder when viewed through Windows Explorer. When you use msconfig (Startup tab) or autoruns (Logon tab) to inspect the Startup listings, they appear twice. Unchecking one or both disables the program from running at all.

Cause

This situation can occur if the user-specific Startup folder is deleted from the user’s profile. When that happens, Windows looks for user-specific startup programs in the All Users startup folder instead. This causes doubling, because the programs from the All Users startup folder are executed once for All Users and again for the current user.

via Prevent Startup Programs from Running Twice in Windows XP.

Run Windows Apps 100% Seamlessly on Ubuntu

Very cool!

I know that most of us Linux [users] usually cringe whenever we need to *god forbid* use a Microsoft WIndows machine. So we created applications like Wine in an effort minimize the contact with that horrid machine. With Wine a big percentage of Windows only apps could run on Linux, which more or less takes Windows out of the equation and lets us interact directly with our favorite App. Another solution of course would be installing Windows on a virtual machine.

But running an app on a virtual machine doesn’t eliminate Windows from the equation. Right? So I will show you now how to run Windows apps 100% seamlessly on Ubuntu.

(via Royal Linuxing!)

Linux Console fonts for Windows

Pretty cool!

Linux console fonts for Windows

These are fixed-width fonts converted to TTF and FON format from the original X11 sources. You will recognize them as the default xterm fonts; they are widely used. They are especially useful for console apps. We programmers can’t live without them

The main problem you’ll encounter is that, some of them being FON files, they are not usable in all Windows programs. This has been a big issue for a long time but recently I added some Windows TTF format that work really well. They even work in Macintosh

via Linux Console fonts for Windows in TTF and FON.

Super Awesome Firefox 3 Tips! (All Platforms)

Just a little collection of tips and tricks I’ve compiled from my browsing about the interwebs. Hopefully they’ll be as useful to you as they were to me! 🙂

(And here’s more tips for Firefox 3 on Linux: Super Awesome Firefox 3 Tips! (Linux))

Disable Installation Delay of Extensions

  1. Open Firefox.
  2. In the Location Bar, input about:config.
  3. Click to get past the warning message that appears.
  4. Locate the Preference Name security.dialog_enable_delay.
  5. Double-click the preference and change the value to 0.

Force old Firefox Extensions to work in Minefield or Nightly-Trunk

  1. Open Firefox
  2. In the Location Bar, input about:config.
  3. Click to get past the warning message that appears.
  4. Right-click on any of the values and select New > Boolean
  5. Add the value extensions.checkCompatibility and set it to False.
  6. Right-click on any of the values and select New > Boolean
  7. Add the value extensions.checkUpdateSecurity and set it to False.
  8. You should now be able to use your extensions from Firefox 3.x in Minefield.

Shrink Firefox 3’s Supersized Back Button

If you’re not a fan of Firefox 3’s large back button, you don’t have to wrangle with CSS or themes to adjust its size. Simply right-click on Firefox’s toolbar, and choose Customize. In the dialog box, select “Use small icons”—and voila! Your back button will be the same size as reload.

(You can also “revert” to a retro Firefox theme here – https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/7645)

Firefox Minefield: Faster Than Chrome

  1. Download and install the latest nightly build.
  2. Start tracemonkey javascript engine by going to about:config and enabling the option javascript.options.jit.content. (Set it to True.)
  3. Browse websites blazingly fast!

According to some tests it is 10% faster than Google Chrome.

…Stay tuned, more tips to come!

Dock Icons Galore!

I’ve been using RocketDock for quite some time, and I’m always on the hunt for great looking dock icons compatible with it (Or MobyDock, ObjectDock, RK Launcher, Y’z Dock, etc.). Luckily, I’ve stumbled across some pretty sweet picks lately and thought I’d share. 🙂

folders

Refresh_CL_Icon_Pack_by_TPDKCasimir

Sleek_XP__Software_by_deleket

You can find a whole bunch more great icons at the following links:

Instant Eyedropper

This little tool is awesome. It’s like the eyedropper in Photoshop, except that it works on any pixel of your screen and gives you the hex code for the color in your clipboard. Very cool!

How it works

  1. Move the mouse pointer to the Instant Eyedropper icon in the system tray.

    Step One

  2. Press and hold the left mouse button and move the mouse pointer to the pixel whose color you want to identify.

    Step One

  3. Release the mouse button.

That’s it. The clipboard now contains the color code – in HTML format (or any other format that you have previously specified). It can be pasted and used in any text or HTML editor or the Color Picker tool of Photoshop.

(http://instant-eyedropper.com/)

Remove Windows Media Player Integration (such as from the Right-Click menu)

This has nagged me for soooo long! I use Winamp, which has its own context menu integration, and I find myself accidentally opening a folder to play in Windows Media Player all the time…

Leave my context menu alone! If you just let it go wild, every program in the world wants to install some option there. Windows Media Player not only puts itself there, but integrates itself throughout the shell. Actually removing this integration is surprisingly easy!

Remove WMP Integration:
1. Click Start
2. Click Run
3. Type in regsvr32 /u wmpshell.dll
4. Click Enter
Easy!

Thanks to Annoyances.org and especially to Tech-Recipes.com for this fix!

How-To Geek: Using Symlinks in Windows Vista

I haven’t tried using my favorite XP junction tool, NTFS-Link, since I upgraded my home computer to Windows Vista, and I’m a little apprehensive since the filesystem has changed a bit. Nonetheless, if you are still using XP, NTFS-Link is an excellent tool for those of you already familiar with symbolic links via other operating systems, such as Linux.

Luckily, Windows Vista does include a command-line tool for creating symbolic links, similar to “ln” in Linux. However, it’s not quite as straightforward. Here’s the scoop from How-To Geek:

Using the mklink Command

The command that you need to use is mklink, which you’ll use from the command line. Just type it on the command line to see the options:

C:Usersgeek>mklink
Creates a symbolic link.

MKLINK [[/D] | [/H] | [/J]] Link Target

        /D      Creates a directory symbolic link.  Default is a file
                symbolic link.
        /H      Creates a hard link instead of a symbolic link.
        /J      Creates a Directory Junction.
        Link    specifies the new symbolic link name.
        Target  specifies the path (relative or absolute) that the new link

(continued via Using Symlinks in Windows Vista)

Flickr Batch Download Tools

It surprises me that good flickr batch downloading tools are so hard to find! I’ve been on a kick lately, per suggestions from flickr advice articles, to archive and remove my point-and-shoot shots from my flickr photostream so that I can focus on my more artistic work.

To this end, I’ve been looking for a good tool to download my old photos, and have found three good candidates:

1. FlickrEdit (Java)

FlickrEditSunkencityHeader

From the looks of this application, it *should* be the one-stop shop for all of your flickr downloading needs, but for some reason, it consistently failed on my machine. After about twenty failed attempts, I gave up. Hopefully this is just a small bug, but I got dissuaded from using it very quickly. Nonetheless, it looks like a solid app, and it’s probably worth a look. (Please let me know if it works for you, and which version of Java you have installed – I can’t figure out what was wrong with it.)

2. Flump (Adobe AIR)

2742770656_8401a25013_o

Flump is a super lightweight, no-nonsense photo downloading tool. You just give it an account, a location to download, and a file mask. It will download all of the photos from that account. The downside? It will *only* download all the photos from that account. If you’re trying to only back up a selection of your flickr stream, you’ll have to wait until the downloading sequence gets that far. But, it’s still worth a look because it’s just that easy to use.

3. FlickrDown (Windows/.NET 2.0)

flickrdown-ui

FlickrDown is by far my favorite of the bunch. It’s super simple to use, gives you a great selection of your sets (and allows you to choose all your photos), and is quite solid. This is well worth the small download. Windows only, though. (Or, you might be able to rig it to run on Mono.)

Update: Just found this via Lifehacker: Flickr AutoDownloadr. Haven’t checked it out yet, but it looks promising.

Making XAMPP (Apache) work with IIS on Windows XP/Vista

Update: This application will help you track down which applications are using which ports on Windows – very helpful for debugging if the steps below don’t solve your problem, or if IIS is not the only application answering on port 80: http://winnetstat.zapto.org/

Also, if you don’t specifically need all the features of XAMPP, but would like to run PHP/MySQL applications through IIS, give Web Platform Installer a try. Through WPI, you can choose to install PHP directly within IIS (so that IIS can serve both ASP.NET and PHP applications on port 80, for example) and you can also have a ton of applications installed and configured automatically for you, such as Drupal, WordPress, and Moodle (among many others). However, if you are still looking to run XAMPP specifically, or just run an Apache instance along with IIS, check out the instructions below. Thanks for visiting!

Continue reading “Making XAMPP (Apache) work with IIS on Windows XP/Vista”

ICK! Color Profile FAIL!

Update: Here’s the link to the Samsung 225BW driver and color profile:
Samsung 225BW Driver

ICK! Color Profile FAIL

I’ve been having ridiculous problems with the color profiles on my Samsung SyncMaster 225BW. I’m pretty sure that it’s not Samsung’s fault, since the monitor is by far the best I’ve ever had, but any color-profile aware application ends up looking like crap (see screenshot above, or this blog post).

Unfortunately, it’s very difficult to get the original CD/software for the monitor if you’ve lost it, but it seems that the best workaround for this is to remove the existing (faulty) color profile and replace it with a working color profile, such as one from Adobe:

http://www.adobe.com/support/downloads/iccprofiles/icc_eula_win_end.html

To do this:

  1. Download the Adobe ICC Windows Color Profile from this link:
    http://www.adobe.com/support/downloads/iccprofiles/icc_eula_win_end.html
  2. Unzip the archive and navigate to the folder “RGB Profiles”
  3. Right click on “AdobeRGB1998.icc” and choose “Install Profile”
  4. To ensure that the profile is enabled, right click on the desktop, choose “Properties”, click the “Settings” tab, then the “Advanced…” button.
  5. Once in the Advanced Properties, click the “Color Management” tab.
  6. Remove any existing profile by clicking remove, then click “Add…” and choose “AdobeRGB1998.icc” from the folder displayed and click “Add”
  7. Click “Set as Default”, OK, then OK again to close the window.
  8. Then restart Windows.

For reference, your color profile dialog should look like this:

2008-07-23_154156

Hope this helps!