Monday, November 17, 2008

Hidden Features of Notepad

Notepad is a brain child of Bill Gates of Microsoft
 and is the cornerstone of Windows Architecture.
Developed by the Gate himself,
it took him fifteen years to write a new GUI...

Notepad is plain simple tool, which can be easily replaced by a wide range of free text utilities. But it has its own advantages:

* It is a commodity - it is installed by default in any computer and any Windows Operating System.
* It is portable, small, fast, and does not use much of computer resources.
* It is so simple, that sometimes it is the only tool you need to open small text files.

To my surprise, even Notepad has its hidden secrets. Today, we’ll discuss two of them.

Making Notes With Notepad

This is real cool for people who use notepad to write down any info on a day to day basis.
* Create a blank text file with .LOG (in caps) as the first line of the file, followed by a carriage return (Enter) and save this file.
* Double-click the file to open it and notice that Notepad appends the current date and time to the end of the file and places the cursor on the line after.
* Type your notes and then save and close the file.
Each time you open the file, Notepad repeats the process, appending the time and date to the end of the file and placing the cursor below it!

Creating Hidden Text Files

This is an interesting trick to hide the files with no third-party software in three easy steps.
* Launch Windows command prompt from Start Menu -> Run -> Type cmd and press Enter.
* Using DOS commands navigate to the desired folder.
* Now type in notepad VisibleFile.txt:HiddenFile.txt and hit Enter, you can change VisibleFile.txt and HiddenFile.txt to names of your choice (notice the sign “:” between both file-names). You will be prompted to Create a New file click Yes as shown below.

Note, that this little "trick" requires NTFS partition. It’s a feature in NTFS that was designed primarily for compatibility with other operating systems, such as Apple’s HFS.


Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Legal Downloading of Copyrighted Books

I like reading books, old-fashion paper books, flipping pages and using paper bookmarks. However, there are multiple cases, when ebooks are much more convenient and usable. You can store many compact text files on your notebook or mobile phone, and you are ready for travel. No need to carry heavy literature in your luggage, books are always with you, wherever you go and whenever you feel like reading: in public transportation, on boring meeting, or in traffic jam.

You can find many websites offering downloading the books, but vast majority of these cannot be considered as using legal procedures, offering you these files. While now the prosecution of ebooks copyright violation is not severe, it might come in the nearest future. At this point, comes to play website Wowio. Wowio lets you legally read online, or even download copyrighted ebooks from leading publishers for free (mostly, you have to pay per download of the book in PDF format, but the cost is usually less than 1$). These include works of classic literature, variety of college textbooks, comic books, fiction books and more. Books can be downloaded in PDF format and will be associated with your Wowio username.

Video Presentation:

Wowio Demo


Saturday, November 1, 2008

Setting Custom Wallpapers for your Folders

You probably aware that there is quite easy to change the Windows background from the default wallpaper to any other texture images, located inside the system folders of your Operating system, or random image you might like (your kids, for example).

But what happens when you open the folders through Windows Explorer you see the yellow folders and only a white background. Do you know that you can change the folder wallpaper as well? And it could be an individual change, so each of your folders might show up with different backgrounds. This post will present you on how you can set wallpapers for your windows folders backgrounds. It works with Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 2000 and 2003.

1. Pick up the "Image" you like to use, and resize it to 815 x 685 - this is to avoid Tiling of the result.
2. Create a temporary folder for experimenting where you will have to create a new file desktop.ini

3. Open new window in your default Notepad text editor, or any other text editor you are regularly using. Even with extremely small Notepad capabilities, for this task, the software will be sufficient.

4. Paste the following code into it: [note: you should replace your image location in the red] [{BE0981 40-A513-11D0-A3 A4-00C04FD706EC}]
IconArea_Image ="C:’[image-location].jpg"
IconArea_Text= 0x00000000

5. Remove the spaces in the first line, change the image path to your desired picture in second line, and change the text color to choose your liking.

These are the commonly used colors for your text: Black - 0x00000000, Pink - 0x00FF99FF, Purple - 0x00FF99FF, Red - 0x00FF0000, White - 0x00FFFFFF. You might need to find more colors codes in Google.

6. Save this notepad file as desktop.ini, in the new folder you created, with file type property as "All Files". You can change also the file property to hidden, if you prefer it out of your way.

7. Register your ini file by "WinKey + Run" type the following "attrib +s "c:’location of your folder" (or Start-Run), where the exact location of the folder should be present. Press OK to finalize your changes.

8. Now Open the folder and see if the changes appear in the folder.

9. To change the wallpaper for your other folders, copy the desktop.ini file and do the necessary changes.

If this procedure is too complicated, or you do not waste your time on following instructions, you can use the software that will do it for you. The software name is Windowpaper XP.

Developers website:

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