How to Find Files Fast Using DOS and Notepad

Do you have a large hard drive? Mine isn’t very big, but I’ve still got over 90,000 files on it.

When I use Windows built in search tool to search for files, it seems to take ages for it to even start looking. It’s almost like the search tool wakes from a deep sleep and decides to start work after a cup of coffee. I can’t blame it, I feel the same way most mornings.

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The solution I’ve come up with works for me and maybe it’ll work for you as well. It doesn’t require any tools that aren’t already on your Windows machine.

I wanted to search a network drive with over 600,000 files on it. Windows searches were taking up to half an hour to produce results. I was prepared to take a lunch break when I initiated a search.

I decided to fall back on my rusty old skills as a DOS batch file guru.

I wrote up a single line of text in Notepad with the following command on it where M: was the network drive I wanted to search.

DIR /B /S M:\*.* > C:\M_file_list.txt

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Then I saved the file as a .BAT file in a handy location.

Double clicking the BAT file launched it. When I launch a batch file, it helps if I stand and pronounce this chant in a loud voice with both hands raised over the PC.

By the Power of DOS, I command you!

That really works best in a quiet room full of people who have no clue what I’m doing.

Fifteen minutes later, I had a text list that included the full path of all 600,000 files on the M: drive.

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Now whenever I need to find a file, I open up the M_file_list text file and hit F3 or CTRL+F to open up the text search dialog.

Searching the text file is hundreds of times faster than Windows standard search was taking. The search takes around   5 or 10 seconds instead of half an hour. That does cut into my long lunch breaks, but we all have to sacrifice things in these hard times.

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When I find the file I want, I copy the file path and paste it into the Start -> Run menu, to open the folder or the file itself.

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Happy searching!

You can leave out the chanting if you have to.

Google Reader Send To Su.pr Button

In the past we have covered several custom Google Send To buttons for , however one of our readers recently asked us that he wanted to create a custom Google Reader Send to button to send a article to Su.pr the URL shortening service from StumbleUpon.

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The benefits of sending a link to su.pr is that you get custom analytics and more. You can find out all about it in our Su.pr review.

Here is a tutorial on how you can add a custom Google Reader send to button for su.pr, if you are new to adding custom buttons read our earlier tutorial on adding custom send to buttons to Google Reader.

Creating Link To Submit To Su.pr API

We will be using the API provided by su.pr, the first thing is to get the URL that will allow you to use the su.pr API to submit content to it, you will find the basic URL below.

http://su.pr/api/post?msg=Hello World! http://www.youurl.com&services;[]=twitter&services;[]=facebook&login=yourusername&apiKey=yourapikey

Now taking this as the base URL, we replace the required things and create the URL we will use in Google Reader.

http://su.pr/api/post?msg=${title} ${url}&services;[]=twitter&services;[]=facebook&login=yourusername&apiKey=yourapikey

The text that we have marked in bold green is the services su.pr will post the URL too, if you do not want to post to or please remove this from the URL.

The text marked in red should be replaced with your own su.pr username and API key which you will find under the settings in your su.pr account (direct link).

Creating Custom Google Reader Send To Button for Su.pr

Once you have created the URL we require for submitting a link to su.pr using a custom button, head to the settings page in Google Reader and go to the Send To and create a custom link (follow this tutorial if you don’t know how to).

Here are the parameters you will require;

Name: Su.pr
URL: The One we created above
Icon URL: http://cdn.stumble-upon.com/favicon.ico

Once you have added the params click on save button.

Submitting Content To Su.pr From Google Reader

Sending link to Su.pr is the same, use the send to menu to send links to su.pr.

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However the response you may see might be weird, but don’t worry if you created the right URL the content will be submitted to su.pr, you can confirm that by visiting your su.pr account.

Hope this helps all you su.pr lovers who want better stats and use Google Reader to share content using the Send To button.

Tutorial: How To Flash DD-WRT Firmware On Your Wi-fi Router

A few days ago I had told you guys about running  OpenSource firmware on your Wi-Fi router. Here are the steps you should follow to flash DD-WRT Linux Firmware on your Wi-fi router. Please keep in mind that here I am using a Linksys WRT-54G2 Wifi router which is completely compatible with DD-WRT firmware. Before proceeding with the steps please make sure that your Wi-Fi router is completely compatible with the DD-WRT firmware from  here. I would also like to notify my dear readers that they should follow the steps as I have said and if by chance they brick their Wi-fi router I should not be held responsible for it.

Step 1: Set your PC static IP to 192.168.1.10 and Subnet Mask to 255.255.255.0

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Step 2: Install Linksys tftp. You can download it from befsx41_Tftp.

Step 3: Disable your Anti virus and Firewall even the inbuilt Windows Firewall.

Step 4: Reset your router and plug in the ethernet (LAN) cable at the back of the Router in any of the provided slot except for the ‘Internet’ port.

Step 5: Start the Linksys Tftp utility and set the Server IP to 192.168.1.1. Then set the password to admin or you may leave it blank. Try either of them, if one fails, try the other one.

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Step 6: The first file you need to flash is the VxWorksPrep-G2V1.bin file.

Step 7: It will take some time for the flashing to complete, after its complete, your router should reboot, if it does not then do a manual reboot. Wait for atleast 2-3mins before doing a manual reboot.

Step 8: Again start the Linksys tftp.exe utility and now flash the VxWorksKiller-G2V1.bin. After flashing the file, again wait for 2-3mins for the router to reboot on its own and if it does not, do a manual reboot.

Step 9: Now flash the latest DD-WRT firmware available for your model. After the flashing is done, wait for atleast 4minutes so that the router sets itself up and reboots atleast twice. If the router does not reboot automatically, do a manual reboot.

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Step 10: After that hard reset the router. Now go to 192.168.1.1 via your browser and setup your new powerful Wifi router. Don’t forget to change back the static IP of your PC back to default.

After this if you ever need to upgrade to the latest DD-WRT firmware, you can use the web interface to do so.

To download the latest DD-WRT firmware for your model, please check  www.dd-wrt.com. If you face any other problem, please feel free to ask here and I would be happy to help.

Cross posted from the Gadgets Buzz blog.

Windows 7: Ten Awesome Win Key Shortcuts You Probably Didn’t Know About

Windows Seven HotkeysWindows Seven features tons of hotkeys. Some new and some old. If you wish you can go through the full list available over here. Here are our favourite hotkeys which utilise the Win Key.

  1. Display Projection : If you are tired of messing around with your Display Driver utility to simply get your laptop working with a projector, then you would be relieved to know that Windows Seven has an inbuilt Projection utility. Press Win+P and choose the kind of display setup you want (projector only, laptop only and both projector and laptop.
  2. Windows Mobility Center : The Windows Mobility Center puts all commonly used Notebook (laptop) settings in a single convenient location. The Mobility Center allows you to change brightness, adjust volume levels, switch power plans, setup additional displays and projectors, setup Sync Center and toggle Wi-Fi. You can trigger the Mobility Center by pressing Win+X.
  3. Taskbar Navigation: Pressing Win+T switches the focus to the taskbar and allows you to use the Arrow Keys (Left and Right) to cycle through active windows.
  4. Application Launcher : Windows Seven allows you to pin applications anywhere on the taskbar. You can launch new instances of the first five applications by pressing Win+1-5.
  5. Aero Snap : One of our favourite new feature in Windows Seven in Aero Snap. Simply drag any window to the edges and it will automatically get resized and dock to that edge. You can achieve the same thing using Win+Left Arrow (dock to the left edge) and Win+Right Arrow
  6. Maximise, Minimise and Restore : Win+Up maximises the active window while Win+Down minimises or restores the active window.
  7. Zoom In and Zoom Out : Pressing Win++ and Win+- launches the Magnifier and increases or decreases magnification levels.
  8. Minimise All Background Windows : Aero Shake is another feature which is new to Windows Seven. Unfortunately triggering it involves vigorously shaking an window. A simpler option is to use Win+Home to minimise all background windows.
  9. Aero Peek : Aero Peek allows you to get a quick look at your desktop (including any installed gadgets) without minimising any window. You can trigger this feature using the keyboard by pressing Win+Space.
  10. Device Manager : Press Win+Pause to directly launch the Device Manager. This shortcut has been present in Windows for ages, but is still incredibly useful.

Do you use hotkeys? If so which hotkeys do you use most frequently? Don’t forget to share your opinion via the comments box.

via Gizmodo

How To Uninstall Google Chrome Extensions? Where are Extensions Installed?

Though we have already told you about a excellent Google Chrome extension manager, for the past few days I have been getting questions from people on how to uninstall extensions.

I did point out many people to the manager but you can still uninstall extensions in Chrome without having to use a additional tool.

Here are some of your questions answered with regards to using extensions in Google Chrome.

Where Are Google Chrome Extensions Installed?

Google Chrome installs all extensions into the user profile, you can find it under the default installation folder. Once you are inside the installation directory, go to User Data folder and then to your profile directory, if you don’t have any profiles it will be the Default folder.

You will find all the extensions inside the Extensions folder inside your profile folder, deleting will delete the extension.

Uninstall Extensions in Google Chrome

To uninstall extensions in Google Chrome follow the steps listed below.

Step 1: Open a new tab in Chrome and type in chrome://extensions/without the quotes in the Omnibar, this should open the inbuilt extension manager in Chrome.

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Step 2: On this page you will find options to uninstall extensions that are installed for your profile, click on the Uninstall button to remove the extension you want to.

As easy as it gets once you know where to look :-), hope this helps you out.

How to Add Custom Send To Links to Google Reader?

recently added new features that allowed users to easily share content with others using a send to links, however the feature does not limit users and also allows them to add custom send to links.

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Here is a short tutorial on how you can add custom send to links to Google Reader.

Step 1: Go to Google Reader Settings page and click on the Send to tab.

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Step 2: At the bottom of the page click on Create a custom link button, you will see text boxes where you can enter the details.

Step 3: In the Name field enter the name you want the send to option to be displayed as. In the URL textbox add the URL of the site you want to send the content to and in the Icon URL add the URL of the icon that you want to associate with the send to option.

Several social networking sites require you to provide with title and URL while submitting content, to add them to the send to link you can make use of substitutions provided by Google Reader.

For example if the link to download a webpage as a is http://savepageaspdf.pdfonline.com/pdfonline/pdfonline.asp?cURL=http://techie-buzz.com

You can use a substitution called {$url} like it is shown in the example below.

http://savepageaspdf.pdfonline.com/pdfonline/pdfonline.asp?cURL=${url}

You can also use ${source} for the source of the article, ${title} for the title of the article and ${short-url} which is a shortened URL that will redirect to the webpage.

Step 4: Once you have added the details click on the save button and the send to option should be available when you go back to Google Reader.

Definitely useful and worth using, we will come up with a of Send to options that you can use to add to your account.

Analyse Windows Boot Performance With Microsoft Windows Performance Toolkit

Last week we showed you how to analyse your Linux system’s boot performance using Boot Chart. Windows users need to feel left out because Microsoft provides a little known free utility for doing the same (and more). Microsoft Windows Performance Toolkit (WPT) consists of several utilities – one of which is xbootmgr. Xbootmgr is an On/Off Transition Trace Capture tool that collects information during bootup, shutdown, hibernate etc.

Once you have installed WPT creating a trace and analysing it is very simple. To create a boot trace type in the following command in the Command Prompt (or Start Menu Search box) :

xbootmgr trace rebootCycle noPrepReboot

The above command will automatically reboot the computer and run a Boot time trace. -noPrepReboot prevents any additional prepatory reboots before the trace and is ideally suited for running a quick single trace. By default the Event Trace Logs are saved in the current directory (by default c:\Windows\System32). If you wish to specify the directory use

xbootmgr trace rebootCycle noPrepReboot -resultPath C:\mydir

Xbootmgr supports multiple command line arguments. If you wish to learn more about them check out this guide by Microsoft. The MSDN Quick Start Guide is also a good place to start off if you want to explore the options offered by xbootmgr in greater details.

Once you have created an Event Trace Log (.etl) you need to open it using the Windows Performance Analyser GUI. Type xperfview in the Command Prompt (or Start Menu Search Box) and open the *.etl file using it. Windows Performance Analyser is an advanced tool that displays among other things CPU Utilisation, Disc I/O and Services loaded during Windows boot process. This allows you to quickly find and eliminate bottlenecks.

XperfView - Performance Analyser

Windows Performance Toolkit offers a wealth of information which advanced users would appreciate. If correctly used Windows Performance Toolkit can help in diagnosing hard to detect system problems and reduce bottlenecks.

[ Download Windows Performance Toolkit for Vista and Seven ]

WiFi Demystified – Part II

In the first part of Wifi Demystified we explained the basic and advanced Wifi configuration and settings. In this section, we will get acquainted with the various security configurations in a typical WLAN network.

Security mode disabled

Now it is perfectly alright to disable your Security mode (set the option on the gateway to “None”), but that will allow any Wifi client to connect to your AP and utilize it’s bandwidth thus hampering the performance of the intended audience. However, it is observed that most APs in India have no security mode set against them are vulnerable to attacks.

WEP security

Wired Equivalent Privacy, is the basic security mode in all the APs. It consists of 64-bit or 128-bit encrypted passkey. The next part is a little confusing : A 64-bit WEP key in Hexadecimal format is 10 characters long while in the normal ascii (or alpha-numeric) format is 5 characters long. The more secrure 128-bit key in 26 characters in Hexadecimal format and 13 characters in ascii format. Now, some routers may not even have an option for both 64-bit as well as 128-bit keys, or they might display something like WEP-40 or WEP-104 (since 64-bit key is actually derived from a 40 bit key and a 128-bit key is derived from a 104-bit key). I have also seen some routers which will not thrown an error if you do not put more than 5 or 13 characters for the respective mode, since they probably account for the user’s ignorance and truncate it internally.

Another notion, present in only a few APs is the key-index. You can set upto 4 WEP keys and then decide a “key-index” or “default key” from these 4, which will be the actual key used.
Although WEP key is better than having security disabled, it is a fairly easy security to crack. Even a moderate cracker will be able to crack the WEP key in a few minutes as softwares are available for doing these. (Maybe I’ll write a separate post on just WEP key cracking next).

WPA/WPA2

This section is further sub-divided for better understanding.

Wifi Protected Access is essentially a Certification program by the Wifi Alliance which was created in response to the concerns about the weakness of WEP as a security mode. However WPA was a certification based on IEEE’s 802.11i draft which was still scrutinized by the community. When the draft was finally ready, implementing the full standards, a huge number of Wifi products based on WPA had already flooded the market and hence it came to be known as WPA2 and the new products had to be backward compatible with WPA.

TKIP /AES-CCMP : WPA uses the Temporal Key Integrity Protocol or TKIP as an encryption method which makes it a lot harder to crack then WEP. The WPA2 security however used the more advanced AES (Advanced Encryption Standard) algorithm which is used by the CCMP (Counter Mode with Cipher Block Chaining Message Authentication Code Protocol) encryption protocol. This protocol makes it impossible for crackers to crack the passphrase, unless of course, the cracker has a super computer at his disposal, in which case it’s just a matter of a few months or years :-).

Both these encryption types accept a pass-phrase (a password), of 8 to 63 characters long, the longer and more random, the better.

Personal/Enterprise mode

Both WPA and WPA2 can be configured in the Personal as well as Enterprise modes.

Personal : Personal mode is also referred to as WPA(WPA2)-PSK or PreShared Key. In this mode you simply setup a passphrase (between 8-63 characters) and share it with users who you wish to connect to your AP. This is usually the default mode to be set in home or SOHO APs since it does not require any additional infrastructure.

Enterprise : In Enterprise mode, the authentication between the Clients and APs happen over the 802.1X authentication protocol. In order to achieve this, there needs to be an external RADIUS server with user credentials in the network (or atleast reachable by the AP). Setting up a RADIUS Server and 802.1X infrastructure is complex and out of the scope of this post, but briefly this is how it works :
The client tries to associate to the AP. The AP sends the Client’s information to the RADIUS Server (this usually happens over a wired connection). The RADIUS server does the authentication and authorization of the user. If the AP gets a “Go Ahead” from the RADIUS, it allows the Client to associate.
As you can see, this is a complex procedure and usually not used in Homes or SoHo environments, which is why most APs may not even have an option to set it.

This completes the WPA/WPA2 configuration settings. Now, just to make sure we are on the same page, WPA2 uses AES-CCMP while WPA uses TKIP for encyption (WPA2 could use TKIP, but that would beat the purpose of the standard). Both WPA and WPA2 can be configured in the Personal as well as Enterprise modes, but Enterpise mode is too complex for home users and should opt for the simpler yet as powerful Personal mode.

So, if your Wifi network has some old clients (more than 3-5 years), it is best to have the security mode set to WPA-Personal and encryption to TKIP. However, if all are relatively new machines, a WPA2-Personal and AES-CCMP pair would make your Wifi almost impenetrable.

WPS

Wireless Protected Setup, is a new Security Configuration methodology. Using WPS, clients can connect to the AP by the simply the push of a button or entering a simple 10 digit Pin code. Needless to say, WPS must be supported both by the AP as well as the Client. WPS is just a convinient way to associate clients and APs and it “sits” on top of the traditional security methods, WPA and WPA2. Thus, before initiating WPS, the WPA parameters should be configured on the AP.

WPS works in two scenarios, Push button method and Pin method.

Pin Configuration method : Some APs will have a WPS pin printed on a label on the device. In other cases, the Client-side generates a unique pin everytime WPS is initiated and this pin has to be entered on the AP (Yes, you read correct. It’s NOT the other way round).

Push Button method : To support this method, both the AP and client either need to have an extra push-button on the device or a soft-pushutton clickable on the Wifi config UI, to initiate WPS.
In both the above cases the basic working is the same : Once WPS is initiated by either of the methods, the Client has 2 minutes to do the same before the session expires. For example, once the button is pressed on the AP, the user should press the WPS button(either hard or soft) on the Client within 2 minutes to get connected. No client can connect after two minutes. If requried, the process needs to be re-initiated. Similarly, once a CLIENT generates a WPS pin, it should be entered and saved on the AP within these 2 minutes for a successful association. This two minute gap is called the Walk period.
Now the attentive user will see the obvious flaw in this system : If a button has been pressed on the AP, any client with WPS capability in the vicinity can associate itself. Well, that’s true, but the other client has to do that within the Walk time. Also, WPS is meant more for convinience than for tighter security, so yeah, there is a trade-off involved here.

MAC ACL

MAC Access Control List lets an AP control which and how many clients will connect to it. However, not all APs have an option to limit the number of clients. Wifi MAC ACLs have a notion on “blacklists” and “whitelists”. When a “blacklist” ACL is applied, all the clients whose MAC addresses   are in that list will be prevented from associating with the AP. Conversely, when the ACL is of type “whitelist”, only the Clients whose MAC addresses are in the list will be allowed to associate, rest all will be rejected. This allows a more broader control on who can or cannot connect to the WLAN.

With this, we have covered the Wifi basics from a layman’s point of view. However, this information should be enough for anyone to configure a Wireless home router in a satisfactory working mode.

Excellent Browser Address Bar Tricks

The browser’s address bar is not just for typing URLs, with new invention in browser it is definitely much more than that, for example we had told you how to use  Omnibar as a calculator & unit converter recently.

Amit from Digital Inspiration has put up a list of things that you can do with the browser address bar, the first thing is the Ctrl + Enter trick to directly load a .com domain, however we have also covered how you can load a .net and .org domain using similar .

Other than that Amit has shown how you can capture a screenshot using the address bar, download videos, shrink URLs, email a web page, share or bookmark, find information about a website, send notes to yourself, open mobile friendly webpage among other things.

Head over to Do more with your browser Address Bar to learn more.

How to Create Psychedelic Wallpapers?

Take a look at my wallpaper today. If you stare at it for a bit, does it appear to move around on it’s own? Isn’t that creepy … or maybe it’s just me?

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If you’re interested, I’ll show you how to create an infinity of wallpapers like this one using only the MS Paint application which is included with every copy of Windows.

* Open Paint
You can usually find it in your Start Menu under “Programs” then “Accessories”. If not, go to Start > Run, then type “mspaint”.

* Set the size
In Paint’s menus, go to Image Attributes.

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Then set it to 8 by 8 making sure you’ve selected the Pixels radio button as well.

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* Zoom in
The normal zoom setting is too small to work with. You can adjust the zoom settings by choosing “Image”, “Zoom” then “Custom” in the Paint menus.

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Once the Custom Zoom dialog appears, set it to 800%

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Now you can see blank square which is 8 x 8 pixels.

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* Show the Grid
I recommend that you turn on the grid setting so you can see each pixel easily. Select “View, “Zoom” and “Show Grid” to see the grid display.

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Now you can see each pixel.

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* Fill the background
Pick a color on the color box.

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Then choose the fill icon.

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Click anywhere on the grid and the color you’ve chosen will fill the entire square. I’ve chosen black in this case.

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* Create a pattern
Pick the pencil icon …

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… then choose a few different colors and fill in your own crazy pattern. Here’s one I’ve finished.

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* Save as bitmap
Once you’ve finished, save the pattern as a bitmap (*.bmp) by making sure you’ve got this selected in the “Save as type” pull-down box. I’ve found that the next step is easier if you save the .bmp file in your “My Pictures” folder.

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* Set as Wallpaper
Right click on an empty area on your Windows Desktop, choose properties, then choose the “Desktop” tab. Now select the bmp file you’ve created. If it’s in your “My Pictures” folder, it should already be listed. Before you hit “Apply” or “OK”, be sure to also pick “Stretch” in the “Position” pull-down box.

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It looks blocky before you hit the OK button, but Windows will smooth out those rough edges when it stretches the little bitmap to cover your desktop. If you’ve chosen to “hide” your desktop icons, this bitmap will still appear blocky and you’ll have to “Show Desktop Icons” to get the smeared effect in a stretched bitmap.

If everything goes well, you’ll have a great looking psychedelic wallpaper like the one I showed you at the top of this article. Once you get the hang of this, you can play with the size of the BMP and different colors to create your own weird universe of color.

Have fun!