Software to help you stay safe on the Internet

Do advertisements annoy you ?


Are you concerned about your privacy when you surf the Internet ?


If you answered yes to either of these questions then this list is for you !

Please feel free to click and follow these links to start a whole new Internet experience the way it was meant to be. Using these browser add-ons will protect your privacy and rid you of unwanted advertisements leaving only the content you wish to view.

Happy Surfing !

Resources to help prevent advertisements & block websites:

How To Block advertisements in Firefox, Internet Explorer, Chrome, and Opera
BlockSite for Firefox
NoScriptNoScript FAQs
NotScripts for Chrome
Karma Blocker for Firefox <- intended for advanced users
Flashblock for Firefox
Block Unwanted Ads with Custom MVPS Hosts File
How to Block a Specific Website Without Software

Resources to help protect privacy:

The Best Browser Extensions that Protect Your Privacy
How to Start Your Browser in Private Mode
DoNotTrackMe <- for Firefox, Chrome, Safari, Internet Explorer on both Mac and Windows
Ghostery <- for Firefox, Chrome, Safari, Internet Explorer and Opera on both Mac and Windows
Free Hide IP
Privacy Badger

Ghostery is a browser tool which allows you to block beacons, trackers, advertising, analytics and widgets.
Ghostery download
Ghostery – How It Works
Ghostery General Options
Ghostery FAQs
How to configure Ghostery to stop Trackers
Ghostery Community Forum

Buying versus Renting Your Cable Modem can Save Money


Buying versus Renting Your Cable Modem can Save Money

When you sign up for cable Internet service, you need a modem. You’re often asked to choose between renting the modem from your Internet service provider for a monthly fee or buying it outright.

If you’re already signed up for cable Internet service, you may see a “modem rental” fee on your monthly bill. You can eliminate this fee by buying a modem outright.

Update: Comcast has recently increased the modem rental fee from $7 to $10 per month

Considering you can buy a Netgear cable modem for $100, you’ll start saving money in 10 months! After 2 years you’ll have saved $140.

The DOCSIS Standard

Cable Internet service providers don’t create their own proprietary standards to communicate over the cable line. Instead they use the DOCSIS (Data Over Cable Service Interface Specification) standard. Because DOCSIS is standardized, you’re not limited to the modem your ISP offers to you. You can buy and use any modem that supports the version of the DOCSIS standard your cable Internet provider offers.

You can generally find information about supported modems on your ISP’s website. For example, Comcast offers a DOCSIS Device Information Center that lists modems that will work on their network. You might have better luck just searching Amazon for “DOCSIS 3.0″, finding a model that you like, and then checking your ISP to make sure it’s compatible. Your ISP may have a web page that lists this information for you. If they don’t, call their phone lines and ask them for more information.

Also make sure that you pick a router with gigabit network ports on it, otherwise you’ll be limiting yourself should you decide to upgrade your internet connection in the future. For instance, this Netgear N600 cable modem works with Comcast, has gigabit ports, supports up to 340 Mbps and even includes Wi-Fi, but this $44 Motorola only supports 100Mb LAN connections and doesn’t have Wi-Fi.

The Break-Even Point

How much money you can save depends on how much your ISP charges you for modem rental versus how much you’d pay for the modem up-front. For example, you can get a modem that will work with Comcast for $100 on Amazon — we’ll use that number, although you may be able to get a modem for as low as $50 (although as we noted earlier, they will usually be limited to 100Mb maximum throughput) Many Comcast users have reported than Comcast is now charging them $10 a month per modem rental fee.

$100 divided by $10 per month equals 10 months, so the break-even point here is just under a year. If you buy your own cable modem instead of renting on Comcast, you’d start saving money after about a year. If you can get a $50 modem, you’d start saving money after just 5 months! Check your own ISP’s fees and the cost of buying a compatible modem so you can do your own math and find your own break-even point.

If you plan on sticking with your current Internet service provider for longer than the break-even time, it makes sense to buy your own cable modem up-front and save on your bill in the long-run. On the other hand, if you plan on moving or switching Internet service providers before the break-even point arrives, you can save money by renting the modem from your ISP and returning it to them when you’re done.

Other Considerations

Modems aren’t always transferable between ISPs. In fact, your best option in some areas may be ADSL, fiber optic, or satellite Internet services that don’t require the same type of modem. You shouldn’t buy a modem with the plan on taking it with you when you move — you may not be  able to use it with your next Internet service provider.

You may also want to contact your Internet service provider and ask if they plan on upgrading their system any time soon. If you rent a modem, you’ll get a new one when they upgrade their systems. On the other hand, if you buy a modem and your ISP upgrades to a new standard that requires new hardware to make full use of, you’ll have to buy a new modem and pay the up-front fee again.

Rented modems also get you technical support directly from your Internet service provider. If something isn’t working or your modem dies, they’ll provide free support — well, the “free support” you’re paying for — and replace it for you. If you purchase your own modem from another company, you’ll have to rely on their warranty service if your modem breaks. You may be better off running out and buying a new modem from your local electronics store rather than waiting weeks for the RMA process to get you a working router.

Overall, most people will be better off paying a bit more up-front to buy their own cable modem and avoiding the ever-increasing monthly modem rental fees. On the other hand, if you’re moving or switching to a new Internet service provider soon, renting will probably save you money. Do the math for yourself to decide which is the best option.

Original article posted at How To Geek by Chris Hoffman on 1/2/15


11 Tips to Speed up Windows 7

1. Uninstall Bloatware

Uninstall bloatware that came with your laptop or PC.
Or even apps you installed but no longer want. Head to Control Panel | Programs | Uninstall a program and take the hatchet to anything, such as unwanted games, that you’ll never need. Many programs will load processes at boot time and take up valuable RAM and CPU cycles. While you’re in here, you can also click “Turn Windows Features On or Off” and scan the list to see if there’s anything you don’t use. You might also try software like PCDecrapifier and Revo Uninstaller.

2. Limit Start-up Processes

Limit startup processes.
In the Start button’s search box, type MSCONFIG, then head to the Startup tab. You’ll likely see a slew of apps, mostly for system support, but you’ll be able to identify some that clearly aren’t necessary. There’s absolutely no need to have GoogleUpdate or even QuickTime running all the time, for example. Don’t delete those that support your hardware or security, but anything blatantly nonproductive can go. You may have to check the program names online with a site like to see what they are—they may even be malware. If you want to get more granular, run Microsoft’s Autoruns utility.

3. Add More RAM

Add more RAM.
Windows 7 isn’t has much of a hog as Vista, but if you’re moving from XP, the memory requirements are greater. Here’s a great article to show you how to add RAM

3. Add More RAM

4. Turn Off Search Indexing

Turn off search indexing.
In Vista I, would only do this if I saw the search indexing icon in the system tray and noticed a performance lag, but that notification isn’t present in Windows 7. Of course, if you do a lot of searching, this won’t appeal to you, as some searches will be slower. To turn off indexing, open the Indexing Options Control Panel window (if you just type “index” in the Start button search box, you’ll see that choice at the top of the start menu), click “Modify” and remove locations being indexed and file types, too. If you want to leave search indexing on, but find that it occasionally slows you down, you can stop its process when you need extra speed. Right-click on Computer either in the Start menu or on the desktop, choose Manage. Then double-click Services and Applications, then Services. Find Windows Search, and double click on that. From this properties dialog, you can choose a Start-up type of Manual or Disabled to have the process silent by default.

5. Defrag

Defragment your hard drive.
Your disk stores data in chunks wherever there’s space on disk, regardless of whether the space is contiguous for one file. Defragging tidies everything up and blocks a program’s bits together so that the reader heads don’t have to shuttle back and forth to read a whole executable or data file. While this is less of a problem with today’s huge hard drives and copius RAM, a slow system can still benefit from defragmenting the disk. Windows 7 comes with a built-in defragger that runs automatically at scheduled intervals. Mine was set by default to run Wednesdays at 1:00 AM, when my PC is usually turned off; so it never got defragged. If you’re in a similar boat, you can either change the scheduled defrag, or defrag on demand. Just type “defrag” in the Windows Start Menu search bar, and click on “Disk Defragmenter.” The version of the utility is improved in Windows 7, and shows more information about what’s happening on your disk than Vista did. The Windows 7 engineering team posted a very in-depth, informative article on the Engineering Windows 7 blog.

5. Defrag

6. Clean Up Your Disk

Clean up Your Disk.
From the Start menu, choose All Programs, Accessories, System Tools, and Disk Cleanup. This finds unwanted junk and files such as temporary, offline Web pages, and installer files on your PC and offers to delete them all at once. You may even find that your Recycle Bin is bulging at the seams: Mine had 1.47GB I didn’t know was there! This will generally only have a noticeable affect on speed if your machine is getting close to full, however.

7. Clean Up Your Disk

7. Check for Viruses & Spyware

Check for Viruses and Spyware.
You can run the built in Windows Defender or a third-party app. You could start with Malwarebytes Anti-Malware or HitManPro. If you want a paid solution, though, I would start with VIPRE Anti-Virus.




8. Performance Troubleshooter

Use the Performance Troubleshooter.
In Control Panel’s search box, type “troubleshooting” and under System and Security, you’ll see the choice “Check for performance issues.” Run the troubleshooter and it may find the root cause of your slowdown.

9. Performance Troubleshooter

9. Turn Off Desktop Gadgets

Turn off Desktop Gadgets.
Now we come to the tips that require shutting down some of the operating system’s bling. Windows 7 ditched the actual visual sidebar of Vista, but there’s still a sidebar process running. Turn it off by typing “gadgets” in the start menu search bar, choosing “View list of running gadgets” and select each in turn and click Remove to shut any gadgets you can live without.

10. Turn Off Desktop Gadgets

10. Don’t Use a Beautiful Desktop Background

Don’t use a beautiful desktop background.
This will free up extra RAM and therefore boost speed slightly. Right-click on the desktop and choose Personalize, then Desktop Background at the bottom of the resulting dialog window. Set it to a solid color.

11. Turn Off Aero Eeffects

Turn off Aero effects.

Head to the Control Panel’s Performance Information and Tools section, and choose Adjust Visual Effects. Here you’ll find a long list of effects, but simply choosing “Adjust for best performance” will turn everything off. You’ll feel like you stepped back into a decade ago.

12. Turn Off Aero Eeffects

Disclosure: While there are definitely many other tips to speed up Windows 7 that are not covered in this article, these 11 tips have been chosen for their ease of implementation and effectiveness for the average computer user.