3 Android Apps that I use constantly and you should too!

Android Tools by C_osett

Android Tools by C_osett

It isn’t like I have a favorite but I thought it was time for a quick post about some really good Applications that can be used with your Android Device to help secure your device or just to keep your information in multiple locations. I’m going to be a little biased with this post because I’m always using Google Services and I’m sure some paranoid people out in the world that is worried about Google Knowing too much. It however isn’t like we have too much choices out on Android, we either have the dreaded Microsoft Windows, Apple IOS, Linux and their many flavors, or Android Phones and Tablets. I’m going to have to say each Operating System has their flaws and at some point knows something about you that you didn’t know they knew. So it isn’t like we can protect our privacy that much from these guys.

Amazon MusicAmazon_Music1

Since I have Amazon Prime, I’m also entitled to stream any music from their vast variety of songs from their Amazon Prime servers.   You can create a large choice of songs or artists and not have any advertisements as you listen.   So this is a great big plus in my book but that doesn’t mean Amazon will change this next year.   it however let’s me have a way to listen to my music unlike Pandora.

Google Wallet


VPN4ALL best privacy&encryption

Constantly using this app to store my loyalty cards that I am often given to by any and all big chain stores.  they obviously want to keep track of your purchases and who you are but I don’t have to carry around those cards in my wallet anymore.   This also has NFC Capabilities if your phone has NFC (Near Field Communications) then you can pay and buy stuff with your phone without pulling out your wallet.   In a few months I’m going to find me an unlocked phone that has NFC Capable feature but that will be later on for me!  You can Visit Google wallet by going to https://wallet.google.com

Google KeepGoogle_keep1

It isn’t like I have a Choice on this.   It has the functionality like Evernote or even Onenote.  So I can talk or write my thoughts or what is needed for me to post about and it can be seen on many different platforms from my windows machine in a browser to all my android devices.   This is a good way to help keep your on your track and helps be a very good productivity feature with Google.  Now if you’re not looking for Google track you, I suggest Evernote or even Onenote, you can do everything and even more with those paid applications but since this is free, I suggest this for all my friends and family.   You can visit Google keep by going to https://keep.google.com.

As you can see this could go on for some time but I feel if I keep this up we may have a longer post that this.   I’ve got dozens of applications that I use for my business and home life but these are what I’m always turning to when I am on the Go and need something or write something down.   I’ll be talking about games in the future but this is a good start for those who need stuff that are free to use while your on your Android Device or Android Phone.   It just depends on what your willing to share with Google.

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Lastpass Security Notice Scares users!


We want to notify our community that on Friday, our team discovered and blocked suspicious activity on our network. In our investigation, we have found no evidence that encrypted user vault data was taken, nor that LastPass user accounts were accessed. The investigation has shown, however, that LastPass account email addresses, password reminders, server per user salts, and authentication hashes were compromised.

We are confident that our encryption measures are sufficient to protect the vast majority of users. LastPass strengthens the authentication hash with a random salt and 100,000 rounds of server-side PBKDF2-SHA256, in addition to the rounds performed client-side. This additional strengthening makes it difficult to attack the stolen hashes with any significant speed.

Understanding what Rounds are for the PBKDF2-SHA256

(hash (master password + username) * Random Salt) ^ iterations) = password hash [See this post for details]

(hash * Encryption Key) * addition rounds  = Authentication Hash  [See this Post for details]   [Hash = Master Password,  Encryption Key = Data]

Now that I’ve explained some of this so you can try to grasp the concept of how they  encrypt your passwords to help protect your passwords.   Now if you’re like me it might take a couple of minutes to understand those equations.   It took me several hours to find this and to understand the concept.   Some of this is more complicated  for the people who don’t program or do these things a lot but would like to see how Lastpass has explain this

Should you change your Master Password?

In honesty is doesn’t hurt you to change your master password.   I have seen conflicting reports from media and even Lastpass.   Lastpass recommends changing your master password.   If you’re having a problem coming up with a really strong password, I suggest using something that is so random that even hackers couldn’t guess.   You could always use the Perfect Paper Passwords to generate a very unique password!

What else can you do?

To help protect your Lastpass account there are several things you can do.   One of them is to regenerate the 2nd Factor Authentication token.  If you’re not using 2 factors of authentication for logging into Lastpass, then you should consider enabling it.   You could always use a Yubikey or some other ways to authenticate who you are.   This way hackers would not be able to log in even if they know your password.

Change the Password Iteration

If you are just keeping it the default that gives the hackers less work.   I would recommend changing it to a random 5 digit number and don’t use the digits “12345” “5432156789” “98765” “51627” or even “95847“.   You should use the random number generator to come up with a good password iterations for your account.

I’m sure there is even more you could do to help protect your passwords but these are at least a few things I’ve done with mine to make sure that I’m not going to make it that easy for hackers to get into my password vault.   As you can see you have many options available to you to help keep your account secure but it just depends on how you approach the problem.

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Windows 10 and You — What you should know about it!

Dave Dugdale - Trying out Windows 10

Dave Dugdale – Trying out Windows 10

Windows 10 Preview

I’ve been playing around with Windows 10 Preview (Use WintoUSB to use a USB Device)on my Lenovo Laptop G530-444638U and I must say, that it isn’t as ready as I would have thought. It however is a huge improvement from Windows 8.0 and 8.1. I’ve found it was much faster and works really well with the older systems.   There are some problems with the builds that I’ve played with that I’d like to share with you and hopefully see some improvements with it in the future.  I haven’t been playing with it exclusively because of the need to use certain programs that seem to not work so well with the preview builds.  It doesn’t mean they will not work when the last release of the build comes out on July 29, 2014 but it does mean that I’m going to wait and see when it finally does come out.

User Interface

After been using Windows 7 for some time I must say that the UI (user Interface) takes a little getting used to because they’ve used some of Windows 8 and 8.1 menu schemes with Windows 10.   I haven’t really used Windows 8 or 8.1 that much because well it isn’t like I thought it was a good.   I prefer the Windows Start Menu myself but that is just what I’m used to I guess.  I’d suggest that if you haven’t used Windows 8 or 8.1 then you will want to start with Windows 10 because they did some stuff right with how to make it easier to learn and use.

Buggy for some!

I’ve had no really problems with bugs other than when I first created a dual-boot with windows 7 and Windows 10 Preview.   It will automatically boot into Windows 10.   That really annoys me that if you’re not paying attention to the startup screen you will automatically send me to the newest OS when I might want to use the old OS much more!  Changing the default boot, made it that much easier for me to prevent it from booting the preview until I decide it is time to play around with it!

Legacy Devices

Well it probably will work with most if not all Legacy Devices but if you have a really old Printer or even an older system then this Windows build will probably be problematic to say the least.   I’m sure they will add support for printers and other such devices such as older cameras but it will take time before it will work with the last version of Windows 10.

Older Programs

Just like the Legacy devices, you will find that it will be problematic with the preview and maybe even with Windows 10 final version.   I am sure they will support the new programs that have been made in the last 7 years or so but I can’t say for sure if they will support programs that are much older but I’m sure if the program is used by a lot that someone will have a way for you to use it.   I am also sure they have a compatibility feature with Windows 10 but I’ve not really been trying them for the most part because I have been really busy with work the last few weeks.   People need their computers worked on, in the summer time.


As we get closer to the release of Windows 10 RTM and July 29, 2014.  I’ll be updating talking about it more so you can get ready for that big day when you have decided to upgrade your Windows 7, 8, or 8.1 System to Windows 10.  I’ll probably even have some updates on it in the coming future!


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Microsoft Notifies Users about Windows 10 being Free on July 29, 2015

Windows 10 is Free?

If you haven’t been looking at your Windows Toolbar lately, then it is high time you glance to the right Corner to check out that new Windows notification from Microsoft. I started seeing it last night but I didn’t have time to investigate it until today. It is legit and Microsoft has announced last week that it will be available July 29, 2015. I’m going to download the latest trial version of this Windows 10 and try it out again. The problem with it is that I have several questions that need to be answered before I even download it and change from Windows 7 to Windows 10. Some of the obvious questions are:

Dual Booting both Windows?

Since I will be having use the same Key for both Windows 10 and 7 (Presumably) will I be able to dual-boot both Windows just in case some programs don’t work with Windows 10.   This seems to be hurdle for some because once you install Windows 7, 8, or 8.1 you will then keep being asked to install Windows 10.  Which you’ll already have that installed on another partition.  It will be nice to have a way to say to Windows 7, 8, 0r 8.1 that I’ve already have it installed or to stop bothering me about it.  I however have found a way to remove that silly little notification and to prevent Windows 10 from being downloaded.   So I now know that it can be prevented.

You’ll only be able to upgrade for a 1 year.

According to Microsoft this will be a 1 year exclusive deal for those who want to upgrade to Windows 10 and thus the problem with this that I can see that needs to be address is quite simple.   What happens if you need to reinstall Windows 10 after that one year.   Will you be able to create a disk ISO with Windows 10 or do you have to now pay for it.   Will it be available for those who have reserved their copy and activated it after the year is up?  This seems to be another hurdle for me that I might not want to even use Windows 10.

Speed is my next question!

Will it increase the speed of the system if I upgrade to Windows 10?   I can’t be certain or know because the last version will decide what they do to the OS and I haven’t really played around with Windows 10 for a while so I couldn’t tell you for sure? but that is something that is a determining factor in upgrading to Windows 10.

Security is also on my mind!

Nothing has been set in stone with regards to Windows 10 and I’ve heard rumors you could just look at your computer and have it automatically unlock.   This seems like some are liking this but since this is something you have and not something you know then you could be compelled to unlock your computer by just sitting down which would leave your computer more vulnerable.   I will have to research this some more but that seems to be something I will not want to do!   I’ll get back on my findings as we get closer to the release date



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Libre Office and Scanner integration for Clients!



Let’s Face it!

You could easily go and do Microsoft Office 365 and pay a most of 69.99$ or 6.99$ a Month.   The problem with that is that you will always be having to pay them something a month to use their products and Microsoft Office 2013 is the last available copy to not get that and no telling how soon that will stopped being sold.   The problem now is that my client has Brother MFC-J430W and MFC-7360N Printers who can’t seem to be used with sending and scanning in documents.   So I’m left with getting both of the printers to work with the free Libre Office suite!

First things First!

Now since I know to use the printers the right way for any program that is on the system you should also go ahead and install the complete software package for the MFC-7360N Drivers.  I also did that for the MFC-J430W Drivers

I never start fixing a problem until, I get all the drivers that may or may not need to get the hardware to work the way it supposed to by the manufacturer!

More Free Stuff!

I know Office 365 and Office 2013 has their own little program to do an optical Character Recognition to put the documents onto a word or even a works digital format.   There lies the problem for me, I had to go searching for an alternative for my client to use to that could do that or more.   I’ve heard people complete about the Free OCR that uses the Tesseract Engine, I have not used it exclusively but I find that it does what I need it to for my clients that do not want to pay for an office suite.  The last problem is a simple fix for those who want to send faxes using Libreoffice 4.3 or higher!

The last thing!

I’m almost done but that will be for another blog post down the road.   The idea right now is to walk you through some of the necessary steps to get LibreOffice to work with any fax or printer that you might have.   It isn’t really that hard but once you set it up the  possiblities are endless.

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How you can support my site with Google Contributor!


Google Contributor Invitation

I don’t remember the actual invitation ask for this beta Test outlet.   I am however quite glad I did.   I got this site to take part in this new venture of theirs.   If your are a Google Contributor then you will see these when you visit my site or others.   I however am wanting to make sure I get the most amount of support for my site.   So I wanted to let you know about this service.   It is an attempt by google to help fund sites that visit most often or sites that you want to support anonymously without having to display advertising on that site.   I like the concept and you can show some nice support for my site and others that you visit often by Joining the waiting list for Google Contributor.   When you finally are a contributor to the web, you have several options available from giving 1$ to 15$ a month to Google to share among sites you visit that month.

How can you Help your Favorite Sites?

The problem so far is that you giving your money split up between thousands of sites and that means they will never get the largest amount of contributions from your visits.   The best way is to limit who gets the money.   This can easily be done by going into the Advanced Settings in the contributor dashboard.





As you can see you will need to change it to just having specific websites that way your money goes to the people who deserve the money or sites that you want to support exclusively with Google Contributor.   If you do not do this then you are support Millions of Websites and that means sites that you value will probably only get 10 cents or 50 cents per month from your visit.   When they could be getting 2 or three dollars by contributing to that site(s) that you want to support.   I do hope you put down my site as one that you want to support.   You can add as many sites as you like to support but remember the more sites you add the less other sites will get.   These sites like mine cost money to pay for hosting and domains.   So that is the one way you can support sites like this one without having to see advertising from Google Adsense.

Other Ways

Other ways you can support my site are:

Visit the my affiliate sites:

Thank you for supporting my site!

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Why I removed the Facebook App from my phone!

Facebook Beachfront by mkhmarketing

Facebook Beachfront

Facebook No More!

On My Life View Phone, I’ve had to do some major fixing of the operating system.  When I finally got the phone working again.   I decided not to install the hack to get Facebook Messages back without Facebook Messenger. After getting my phone working again, I was somewhat tempted in re-installing all my apps.   I however have noticed several thing that I will talk about.

Battery Life!

Now I can go almost the day without having to put my phone back on charge.   I’m certain that Facebook was one of the culprits but I do know it isn’t the only one.   I didn’t install every app I had installed before.   I could give you a list of these but I won’t!

More Productive!

I am being able to be more productive at work and on my site without having to worry about what people are saying or doing on Facebook!  I however needed to opt out of several functions of Facebook.   Seems that if you aren’t using any Facebook app or aren’t visiting their site regularly then they will email you when someone comments about you or tags in you a Photo.   This can easily be fixed by hitting the Un-subscribe feature in the email and confirming it.  If you change your mind later on you can go back and change them in your Facebook Settings.

Less Annoyances!

I’m telling you the truth, it was annoying to see comments or posts that people thought you might want to read or see while your working or when your away from the Social Networking thing.   I’m pretty contented with just having Twitter and Google + on my phone for when I need to keep updated on major things.   I don’t need people telling stuff that I need to see right away.


I’m pretty sure I will install the Facebook app when I buy a new phone but I am uncertain to as how I will do it or if I will roll back to the earlier version.   I won’t be getting a new a phone for a while and I’m happy with that choice.   I just don’t see the need for the Facebook App to be in my life and blowing up my phone.   I’ll change those notifications later on too when I finally get a phone with the App on it!   This however is how I will be doing it for the next few months.   No need to Facebook me, But you can Tweet me or Google + me for the Time being and I’ll get it!


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How to disable Chrome’s Malicious Download Block!


This File is Malicous, and Chrome has Blocked it.

Chrome blocks Unsafe files!

I woke up this morning to go download a specific file that I wanted to install for me.   The TrueCrypt installation 7.1a from Steve’s Website this morning to find out that Chrome was claiming this was a Malicious file and that It blocked me from downloading this particular file from his site.  I’m sure this isn’t the first time there was a false positive when it comes to Chrome and Mozilla thinking a file or a filename was unsafe but since the creators made that statement a year ago.   I am guessing Google believes there statement and decided that it is now considered unsafe to download from any website especially with that file name.  I decided to try my luck and test this out.   So I went uploaded it to my Dropbox and changed the name to another filename other than what Google is looking for and it seemed to work.   So the work around right now is a simple one.

Uncheck Phishing and malware Protection!


You can easily disable this by going into the settings and hitting the Advanced Settings. Go down until you see this Check and remove it and restart your browser. You also might have to restart your computer. Some systems will not refresh that setting until you restart your computer so the best approach is to just restart the computer just to be safe. Once done you are free to download what ever you want but be careful of files you don’t trust and you can always test any file you download by going to VirusTotal.com to check to make sure the file you’ve downloaded is virus and malware free. You can also go back into the settings and enable that when you’re  finished downloading your files and want to feel protected again.

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How to use Virtual Box with Spinrite. The Easy Way!

Virtual Box and Spinrite

Virtual Box and Spinrite

Spinrite ISO is Needed!

If you haven’t purchased Spinrite or have a copy from a friend, then this tutorial will not help you. I have also included a bunch a batch files to help you with using Spinrite with Virtual Box.   Although the reason for this is that you need to have Direct Access to the hard drive in question.   If you haven’t download the Spinrite program or don’t have the ISO then you will need to download the Spinrite program.


Now Click Create the ISO or IMG File


Save the Boot ISo or IMG to directory of your choosing!

Virtual Box

Now if you haven’t downloaded Virtual Box, now is the time to do it and install it.   I will not talk about how to install this on Windows.   This is going to be a Windows required for my Batch files.  Once you have that installed you are most of the way there.   You should create a Spinrite Virtual machine:


It gives options such a 64 megabytes of Read Only Memory (RAM) but I prefer to go 512 if I have the memory that I can use.   I wouldn’t suggest anything under 256 Megs of RAM but that is just me.  I’ve heard others who have used 128 Megs of Ram for this experiment but it is totally up to your preference.   Then hit next,  it will want to know if you want to create a Virtual Hard Drive.   I recommend just saying no to this option you will come back to this later anyways.   Unless you have already done the batch files then you should select using existing Virtual hard Drive.

Once you created the Virtual Machine, then you will need to Right Click on it and select Settings.   You will then click on Storage and remove the Floppy drive and then click on add attachments


You will then Click on ADD CD/DVD Device.  The other option is ADD Hard Drive which will be used for The VIRTUAL BOX direct access file, see below.  This will open up and you will then find the Spinrite.ISO and open that file!  Close out of Virtual Box!

All Set for Spinrite

Now that you have Spinrite virtual machine all set up.   You next step is go download my batch files and put them in:


it has everything you need to use with Virtual Box plus More.   Once you have extracted these batch files to that directory you will see a cmd shortcut link.   This link is what you will use to get to that directory.   Right Click that link and select RUN as ADMINISTRATOR.   The reason for this is the Virtual Box will need that access to have direct access link for the hard drive you are wanting to create the access for.   It is all technical but basically it won’t work unless this way.

Your First batch file that you should run is


(This will simply show you which drives are on the system.)  You will want to take note on the drive numbers and figure out which drive you are wanting to Spinrite.   The one that you want to Spinrite is the one that you will want to use on the next step.

VB_DISKS.bat [filename] [Drive #]

You shouldn’t use any extensions with the filename.   It will automatically add the VDMK extension that states that is a Virtual Disk file.   It is primarily used for VM and is a good choice for direct access files.

You should see Virtual Box pop up and you will want to go back and then add the drive to the Spinrite virtual machine.   See above for details.   The directory that the direct access file is going to be in C:\VM_DISKS, so look there for the link file.

*update 5/12/15*

I’ve updated this batch files to no longer need to know the drive before hand.   All you have to do is add the filename.   You will be asked if you know the drive # and if not it will display it for you.   So you will skip a few steps that were previously mentioned.   The diskpartlist.bat file has also been added to this batch file.

Run Virtual Box Session and you should be set.   Once done you then need to run:

VB_Restore.bat [Drive #]

If you get to many files in that directory and you want to clean up the directory you should then just run:


It will delete all VDMK files and restore it to what was there before hand.    Two Other batch files that you might want to use are:

amazon.bat [browser]  (IE, Chrome, and Firefox)

Donate.bat [Browser] (IE, Chrome, and Firefox)

If these are useful and want to help support my efforts, I strongly recommend using one or both to help support me.   Using the amazon.bat file for every time you buy something from amazon gives me a commission but cost you nothing.   Donating via Paypal is also an option for those who wish to tip my efforts.   Thanks again!

I will be updating the shared folder for future edits and putting even more stuff in the file so keep watch and come back often!

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How to Watch your DVD movies without getting of the couch!


We’ve all Heard about Copying DVDS!

The problem with that is that some people take it way to far and start to sell the copied DVD’s at flee markets or on the black market!  This is unacceptable to me, I however will warn people that it is illegal in some if not all countries and shouldn’t be tried, unless you own the DVD in question.   If you do not own the DVD than You do this at your own risk!

That being said, I will talk about how I can play all my DVD’s that I own on my Hisense 32″ LED HDTV 32K20DW [Amazon Affiliate Link].  I must say it was unexpected to be have DLNA (Digital Living Network Alliance) and it allows my TV to connect to my Windows 7 / Linux Mint  computer.   I have a dual boot situation on my Laptop, because of what I do with my computer!   I must say that the Linux Mint isn’t bad and comes with a lot more options than you normal get from any Linux distro.   It comes with full multimedia support and some really good applications that I do not need to download already!

I’ve also got me a 4 bay Drobo with 4 X 1 TB hard drives.  I found a place that sells the bad Hard Drives for 5$ each and I take them and repair them with Spinrite to use with my Drobo

Let’s Handbrake This!



I must say the Windows Version seems to be really buggy, so that is why I used the Linux Mint and installed Handbrake on it. I actually had no major problems installing and using the software as long as you know how to use Linux. It can be difficult because the file system and commands are strictly uncommon from Windows. There is a curve learning curve to use Linux but once you figure it out, it becomes almost second nature!  Handbrake can be used on IOS, Windows, Ubuntu, and Other Linux distros depending on the availability of the kernel being used in the Linux OS!

You will need to provide the source DVD or file.   You can point the location to:

/media/username/” or “/dev/disk/by-label/

This will work with most Ubuntu systems but it might not on others.   So you will need to search for it on your local system.

Now depending on which system you will be using to stream this video to your multimedia TV, you will need to select either Universal or if your have an Apple TV, you will want to select that.   A Fair warning that the High Profile setting will take much longer to copy and takes more space on your local hard drive.  So be mindful of that.    You only have one options to use the MKV format and it works just fine on my Hisense HDTV.   So if your having trouble with streaming from your local system to the TV, I might add just change the file name extensions to ones that Window Operating systems can stream like an MP4, AVI, or m4p extensions to allow Windows to see it and be able to stream it.   I use that little trick to get Windows to share the MKV file to my TV, which I did test and could do the MKV file without any support.   I also can plug in a USB Stick to use to play Videos, Pictures, or Music on my TV.   So I know it can do all this!

Streaming Videos

When I started this project, I was having trouble with the Windows Media Player.   I decided to go searching for a better DNLA Media Server that could do what I wanted to.   I finally went to the TVersity which does a far better job at sending the Videos and being a Media Server.   You can also try the Universal Media Server which does some of the things that you might want but I found that to be a little to complicated for me.   The TVersity was much simpler to use for my needs!  I have been streaming my DVD’s to my TV with no problems since I started the project but it just depends on how hard you try or how long it takes you to encode all the DVD’s to the Hard Drive

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