Wubi – unofficial Ubuntu installer for Windows

May 30, 2007

I’d wager that there are a huge number of Windows users who would probably be quite happy with Ubuntu Linux as their day-in day-out OS of choice. If only there were an easy way to try Ubuntu out on your windows machine without breaking anything, repartitioning or dealing with the diminished performance of a Live CD.

You’re in luck. Wubi takes the hassle out of installing Ubuntu on a loopback file system located on your Windows partition, while making it bootable just like a real-deal Ubuntu install. In fact, it _is_ a real-deal Ubuntu install, albeit in a slightly unconventional manner. If you go glassy eyed at the word “loopback”, don’t worry.. it’s just a fancy way of saying that your whole Ubuntu install is self-contained and stored in a single large file on your Windows drive.

source [downloadsquad]


Niceify your Windows with Pitaschio

May 30, 2007

Pitaschio adds a few very basic window manipulation features to Microsoft Windows which probably should have been included in the first place. Essentially, Pitaschio tries to make Windows a slightly better neighborhood in which to live.

With features which allow you to minimize regular windows to the system tray, keep windows from opening with any part outside the desktop area, window transparency adjustment using the scroll wheel and a whole list more, Pitaschio goes a pretty long way towards enhancing the rather bland set of features available for window management in the world’s most common OS.

If you’re unhappy with the weak feature set in Windows, Pitaschio could help close the gap.


source [downloadsquad]

The Top 10 Freeware Applications from Microsoft

March 22, 2007

We have compiled a list ten all-time favorite software programs from Microsoft that are free to download without any limitations.

Microsoft ZoomIt – Like a screen pen, ZoomIt lets you draw or write free-hand on the desktop screen in various colors. [screenshot]

Windows Live Writer – A must have WYSIWYG blog editor for Windows that is compatible with all popular blogging platforms including WordPress, Blogger, TypePad and LiveJournal.

WebCam TimerShot – lets you take pictures at specified time intervals from a Webcam connected to your computer and save them to a location that you designate. Great for a spy camera or making stop motion animations.

Microsoft Time Zone Utility – It runs as a tiny icon in your system tray and allows you to watch the current date and time of upto 5 cities around the world simultaneously.

Microsoft SyncToy v1.4 – A free utility to help you copy and move files across folders or for keeping directory contents in sync with each other. SyncToy also keeps track of renames to files and will carry the changes over to the synchronized folder.

Windows Media Encoder 9 Series – a versatile screen capture and screencasting software from Microsoft. Windows Media Encoder can convert recorded audio or video to Windows Media format for distribution on the web.

Windows Defender – This free Windows AntiSpyware program can detect and remove spyware from your computer much like Lavasoft Ad-aware or Zonelabs softwae.

Microsoft Photo Story 3 – An excellent software for creating video slideshows of your digital photos with music and titles. The software also lets you create your own music loops. [details]

Microsoft Virtual PC 2007 – This VMWare like software allows you to run multiple operating systems on the same computer simultaneously. For example, you can work on Linux, DOS, XP or even Windows 98 inside Windows Vista.

Microsoft Calculator Plus – This includes all the mathematical functions offered in the standard Microsoft Calculator plus conversions between different measurement units for area, temperature, volume and even currency.

source [digital inspiration]

Highly Configurable Desktop Clock

March 22, 2007


You may already have a widget for everything under the sun, but PC users, you might want to try this Systemetrix desktop software tool that not only tells you the time, but lets you know a whole lot of other stuff about your system as well. This clean-looking clock is not the only skin you can put on this sucker, and it can show you hundreds of things about your system, such as e-mail stats, system resources used, drive space left, your IP address and lots more. We loaded it up and it works great. Best of all, it’s absolutely free.

source [gizmodo]

How to print just about anything to PDF for free

March 14, 2007


One of our favorite programs here at Download Squad HQ is Foxit Reader. It’s basically a replacement for Adobe Acrobat. Foxit reads PDF files, and that’s about it. But boy does it do it well.

Adobe Reader can take 30 seconds or longer to load, and tends to bog down Firefox or Internet Explorer when you want to open a PDF from a web page. Foxit loads in a snap and can handle almost anything Adobe Reader can. But the free version of Foxit won’t let you create PDF files.

That’s where doPDF steps in. It’s one of a number of programs that installs a virtual printer on your machine. Now when you go to print a web page, word document, photo or pretty much anything else, you can save it as a PDF file. You can set the resolution to anything from 72 dpi to 2400 dpi, and the “printed” files are text searchable.

Sure, doPDF’s not the only program that performs this function, but much like Foxit, it’s free and it just works. Really well.

source [downloadsquad]

Outlook on the Desktop

March 6, 2007

Outlook on the DesktopOutlook on the Desktop is a free application built on .Net by Michael Scriv. It allows you to pick any one of the main Outlook views (Inbox, Calendar, Tasks, etc), and display it directly on your desktop. The display is shown in a mildly opaque way, so that you can still see your desktop wallpaper (or in my case, icons) beneath the Outlook display. However, the coolest part of this utility is the fact that the view on your desktop is active; you can double click on a day if you’re viewing the calendar, and up pops the standard appointment creation dialog.

It seems like there have been a number of recent attempts to set free the personal management information you’ve got locked away in Microsoft Outlook and expose it on the desktop of your computer. I personally have two problems with this. First, I almost never have all of my running applications minimized so I rarely see my desktop. Second, over the past 6 months I have been unable to reduce the number of icons on my desktop to the point where I can actually see the wallpaper I have set, never mind trying to read something displayed there.

If you’re looking for an Outlook widget type of utility on steroids, Outlook on the Desktop may be just the ticket.

source [downloadsquad]

Microsoft Time Zone

February 7, 2007

ms_timezone.GIFWindows only: The free Microsoft Time Zone app displays the current time from multiple locations in the XP taskbar.

If you haven’t yet upgraded to Vista but you would like its multiple clocks feature, the not-as-pretty, but just-as-functional Time Zone’s for you. Microsoft Time Zone is a free download, and requires .NET 1.1 to run.

Download Microsoft Time Zone from here.

source [lifehacker]