Analyze Your Chrome History Trends Over All Time With This Extension

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Google Chrome comes packed with its very own history manager that allows you to view all of the websites that you've previously accessed, and reopen links you didn't get the chance to bookmark. Though have you ever wanted to analyze that data to help you determine what sites you visit the most on your weekdays, or how many times did you search for a particular keyword? Well, there’s a really neat extension for that purpose called History Trends, which is designed to analyze your entire browsing history and display a variety of charts and statistics. The only caveat with that tool is that it doesn't allow you to analyze data beyond 3 months period due to limitations in Google Chrome itself. If you find History Trends useful and want to overcome this limitation, History Trends Unlimited takes care of it for you. Read More

Monitor Hard Drive Or SSD Health & Performance With HDDExpert

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Manufacturers are always pushing boundaries trying to make hard disks as robust and reliable as possible. Despite that, HDD failure and data loss remains an inescapable reality. Therefore, there are RAID configurations, backup systems and other solutions designed to prevent data loss and minimize the impact to an organization when drives simply stop working. While there are various ways to help you prevent data loss, one of the easiest methods is to keep a check on your hard drive’s health using monitoring tools. One such utility goes by the name HDDExpert. It is a free Windows application by KC Software that displays health & performance of your HDD or SSD, decodes S.M.A.R.T. attributes into readable form and recommends ways to maintain the health of your drives. Read More

What’s New In Windows 8.1: Here’s Everything You Need To Know

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Windows 8 has been pretty controversial among desktop and laptop users because of the way it forces the whole Modern UI shebang in your face. 99% of the time I'm using my laptop is within the 'Desktop' environment, which I strongly believe is a big improvement over Windows 7, so I don't mind the tablet-esque, touch-optimized UI of the rest of the OS. With Windows 8.1, Microsoft has solved many of the problems Windows 8 had in terms of usability while adding a bunch of lovely new features, and in usual fashion, we have covered them all in good detail. If you're considering making the switch to Windows 8.1, be sure to go through our list of articles first so you know what you are getting into. Read More

Easily Backup Windows Drivers & Restore From Within Device Manager

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Let’s face it, we've all been in a situation where we needed to reinstall Windows due to some issue, or after getting a warranty replacement because of some faulty component. In such scenarios, reinstalling everything from scratch can be a very tedious task, especially when it comes to hardware drivers that you had configured to a state where they were all working perfectly. While I've always been meticulous regarding creating PC backups, hardly have I ever thought of backing up all my device drivers to avoid extra time that would be wasted should I ever need to redo everything from scratch. That’s why when I came across Free Driver Backup – a Windows app that specifically creates driver backups – I found the idea very useful. With one mouse click, it creates driver backups to your computer’s storage that you can restore later at any time. Read More

Modify Timestamps For Files From Windows Properties With TouchPro

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Every document, image, video, song and any other file on your computer has a few associated timestamps (that can be seen within the Properties window) for letting you know when was it created, modified or last accessed. The effective use of these timestamps comes into play when working on network drives where files from different timezones get mixed and matched, and you need to keep a tab on when the files were last accessed or modified by other users of the network. Should you want to change any of these timestamps for any purpose, there are a numerous apps available for the job. Previously, we’ve showed you different ways to change timestamp using tools like SKTimeStamp and Smart TimestampTouchPro is yet another similar app that allows you to easily modify these timestamps for any files on your local or network drives. Read More

Qmmp Is A Tiny, Multi-Panel Music Player With Plugins & WinAmp Skin Support

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Addictivetips has covered a plethora of music apps since its inception, from nifty browser plugins to feature-laden media players for desktop and mobile platforms. When it comes to Windows, there’s a bevy of choices at your disposal including ever-popular options like WinAMP, iTunes, Media Monkey, etc. If you’re ready to make a transition from your current favorite media player or simply want to try something new for a change, then give the open source program Qmmp a shot. On the surface, the app looks fairly similar to WinAMP, and like the latter, comes with a wide variety of music management options. It lets you organize your music into custom playlists, tinker with equalizer and visualization effects, apply custom skins and more. Read on! Read More

WIPE Lets You Permanently Delete Internet Tracking Data From Your PC To Protect Your Privacy

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Unfortunately, not many computer users realize the importance of periodic system maintenance until its performance goes down. One can easily prevent this from occurring by frequently removing junk data off their system, such as cached items from previous program installations, tracking cookies, temporary files and so on. Not only does it revert your system to its pristine condition but also ensures greater security and privacy, as a lot of temporary files contain personal information from sites that track your activities. New to the genre of system maintenance tools, WIPE is a simple application that keeps your system clean and privacy intact by allowing you to permanently erase (read: shred) index.dat, caches, temporary internet files, browser history, cookies and auto-complete form items so that they cannot be recovered using a data recovery program. Read More

Measure Your USB Drive’s Read/Write Performance With USBFlashSpeed

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No matter what kind of computer hardware you purchase, one of the worrying factors is whether its performance will be up to the mark. Therefore one of the best methods to use is benchmark the required component against the specs mentioned by its manufacturer. Akin to the way the performance of the CPU, memory and hard drive of a computer can be determined using various software methods,  you can also check the actual performance of a USB thumb drive in a similar manner, thanks to tools like HD Speed and HD Tune. Though if you’ve already tried out those apps and are looking for an alternative solution, give USBFlashSpeed a shot. This Windows app can measure a flash drive’s read and write speeds, and also lets you publish results to an online repository, the objective of which is "to benchmark all USB Flash drives over the world." Read More

MetroSidebar Adds A Gorgeous Modern UI Widget Sidebar To Windows 8

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You may have noticed the absence of desktop gadgets in Windows 8 and 8.1 by now, which Microsoft removed in favor of Start Screen ‘Live Tiles’, as the software maker believes the later can present information in a much more efficient way without being taxing on the resources or aesthetics of the OS. Introduced in Windows Vista and then later ported to Windows 7 as well, gadgets were basically those small handy tools similar to Android widgets that could be placed on your desktop to access information such as Weather, Clock, Sticky Notes, CPU meter, Picture sideshow etc. If you miss your gadgets in Windows 8, we've seen a way to bring them back with a third-party program, and MetroSidebar is another app that's worth a shot for the purpose. Fully embracing the Modern UI style, MetroSidebar is no ordinary app and looks really nice with a Start Screen-like design scheme. Details after the jump. Read More

MEGA Client For Windows Appears; Syncs Multiple Local Folders With The Cloud

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Last year, Kim Dotcom unveiled a new cloud storage company called MEGA from the ashes of his now-defunct Megaupload – the popular file sharing service that made headlines after a forced shutdown by authorities due to copyright infringement. MEGA has gained worldwide acclaim since then, and in turn seen impressive userbase growth. Besides its intuitive web-based dashboard, MEGA also has an official Android client that lets you sync files directly from your smartphone or tablet to your online storage. However, when it comes to Windows, the company has stayed tight-lipped about any details pertaining to whether a desktop app is being developed or not. All that changes now, as the beta release of a MEGA client for Windows has finally emerged in the form of MEGASync, though there seems to be no official word regarding it from MEGA itself so far. Read More

How To Auto-Upload Screenshots With Dropbox & Easily Share Them

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Dropbox single-handedly reinvigorated the cloud syncing and storage market, and for good reason. The team behind the service is constantly iterating on their product, coming up with inventive new ways to use it for saving and sharing files. After the highly useful "Camera Uploads" feature, they've now come up with an equivalent for screenshots. On mobile platforms, the screenshots you took already get uploaded to Dropbox and synced across all your devices if you have Camera Uploads enabled. With screenshot sharing, the feature comes to the desktop as well, along with a direct sharing option. You'll have to read past the jump to see how it works. Read More

Easily Edit Windows HOSTS File & Selectively Disable Entries

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BlueLife Hosts Editor is a useful Windows application that allows you to edit the HOSTS file located in you operating system. For the uninitiated, this file allows users to create mappings between domain names and IP addresses, so that all those domain names are then resolved to those IP addresses within the operating system rather than on the DNS server of your LAN or ISP. In layman's terms, if you want that whenever you (or anyone else using your computer) enters, let's say, facebook.com in the browser, they get taken to Google instead of Facebook, you can do so by mapping the facebook.com domain to the IP address of google.com. This way, you can redirect any domain or website to any other website on the internet, any local website hosted on your LAN, or even just your local IP address. Read on for more details. Read More

Add Password-Protected Vault To Your USB Drive With Granite Portable

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USB drives have become indispensable to us for storing all kinds of data and carrying it along wherever we go. Most people use USB drives to store media files or information that isn't sensitive in nature, but if the data you want to store is confidential, such as your financial documents or other personal info, you wouldn't want this info to be exposed to anyone in case your USB drive gets lost or stolen. Fortunately, there are a variety of tools available for creating an encrypted volume on a USB thumb drive, and one such Windows-based app I recently came across and really liked is Granite Portable. The app provides 2-layer protection for your data by letting you store items in an encrypted vault. Details after the jump. Read More

Extract PDF Images While Applying Watermark & Other Batch-Editing Actions

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PDF is one of the most popular file format used for a wide variety of documents such as books, brochures, forms and even picture-laden presentations. Speaking of pictures, sometimes you need to extract images from a PDF file for, let’s say, storing them as separate items or reusing them in another project. Unfortunately, image extraction from a PDF can't be done directly from a PDF reader, and requires using a third-party app. We've covered many such tools for our readers, among which Fusion Image PDF Extractor for Windows and PDF Toolkit for OS X are pretty awesome. Free PDF Image Extractor 4dots is another great Windows program that you can use for said purpose. The tool is fairly feature-rich and user-friendly, and is designed to extract images from multiple PDF files in batch. Details just past the jump. Read More

Browse iPhone Backups, Manage App Data & Media Files With iBrowse

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iTunes might provide the only official way of managing data on your iOS devices, but there are many third-party desktop tools that do the same with a lot less hassle. iPhone Explorer and iDevice Manager are just two of the alternatives iOS users have for iTunes. Thanks to such software, you can drag and drop media, app data, notes, and contacts to your device without having to figure out the complicated syncing hierarchies that can make using iTunes a real pain in the neck. iBrowse is yet another tool that offers iOS file access, but it is unique to some extent, too. With iBrowse, you get to go through the backup data stored on your computer, without having to restore it to a device. When an iPhone is connected to your PC or Mac, iBrowse also shows full app data, along with the usual photo and video files. Read More

[Ask The Readers] WinRAR vs. WinZip vs. 7-Zip: What’s Your Favorite File Archiver?

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For most, if not all PC users, a file archiver is among the first apps to be installed during initial setup. There's a good reason for it, since archived files are highly common and much of the content that we download comes in form of archives. Besides reducing overall file size, archiving is great for combining multiple files into a single file and then using that for easier, faster and more secure sharing and backup. We've covered a fair amount of Windows file archivers here at AddictiveTips; now it is time to decide on our and your favorite one. Read More

Auto Cleaner Removes Windows Temporary Files After A Set Interval

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The Disk Cleanup utility, that comes packaged by default with Windows , is a useful tool to reclaim some of your disk space by removing items such as temporary internet files, Recycle Bin items, application dump files that are generated when various errors occur, backup and installer files generated when Windows installs a Service Pack, and miscellaneous items kept that aren't necessary for everyday functioning of Windows. But let’s face it, how many of us go through the manual process of running the utility on a regular basis? Not a lot, except for some advanced users who like to do all such tinkering on their own. So, why not try an application like Auto Cleaner that can take care of getting rid of such files for you automatically? While quite not as comprehensive as Disk Cleanup or other third-party tools, the application does a nice job of automatically cleaning up temporary folders and files left by various applications. It can do so every 24 hours, or after a custom interval defined by the user. Read More

Tresorit Is A Cloud Storage & Syncing Service With Focus On Security

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One of the major concerns that many people have about cloud storage is how secure their data will be when saved to the cloud. Privacy-conscious people tend to hesitate in entrusting their confidential information to a company without the guarantee that no one else will be able to access it. There are countless cloud storage services out there such as Dropbox, Google Drive or Bitcasa that offer plenty of storage space to you for free, but they aren't exactly known for having strong data security and encryption, which has lead to the rise of third-party apps like BoxCryptor for adding that security layer. If security is what you look for in a cloud storage service, Tresorit is can be a good choice. It’s a simple cloud storage and file sharing & syncing app for Windows, Mac, Android and iOS that aims to provide the most secure cloud environment for your data, and comes packaged with an elegant interface. Read More

Faceless.ME Is A VPN App For Windows With Free 2GB Monthly Bandwidth

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Looking for a way to privately browse the web, share files, and access websites that are restricted in your location? What you need is a VPN (Virtual Private Network) program. Fortunately, there are plenty of choices when it comes to VPN service providers, with some being better, faster, cheaper, and more reliable than others. We've also covered quite a few free options like Spotflux, Tunnel Bear and VPNium, all of which left us fairly impressed. Faceless.ME is yet another decent VPN application for Windows that aims to keep your online presence safe and secure by hiding your real IP address so no one can track your activity. It’s a decent option if all you need to do is anonymously surf the web or share files with others, making it a useful tool while on public Wi-Fi hotspots. You can also use it to access websites or content not available in your own location. Read More

Sync Chrome & Firefox Bookmarks With iCloud On Windows

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It’s been a fantastic month for Apple fans. Last week’s biggest Apple news was the highly anticipated release of the iOS 7 update. And this week, the folks at Cupertino have begun dropping more, smaller additions to its software lineup, which now includes an updated iCloud Control Panel for Windows that lets you synchronize Safari bookmarks between iOS devices and Mozilla Firefox as well as Google Chrome. While this feature was already available for Internet Explorer for quite sometime, it’s good to see the app’s expansion on to additional platforms. The iCloud Bookmarks extension enables you to save bookmarks on your iPhone or iPad, and have everything synced to desktop versions of Chrome or Firefox. Details after the jump. Read More