Oracle has published yet another update over the weekend to address some critical vulnerabilities. If you are fed up with all these critical updates, you can completely disable Java content in the browser by using the Java Control Panel. However, there are still quite a few legitimate web sites that require Java. If you disable Java in the browser, you won’t be able to visit those sites anymore.
Since I use Chrome most of the time, I decided to disable Java in the Chrome browser. That way, if I needed to visit Java-enabled websites, I could use a different browser like IE instead. Here is how you disable Java in the Chrome browser.
- Enter chrome://plugins in the address bar and press enter.
- Scroll down and find the Java Plug-in.
- Click on Disable to disable the Java Plug-in.
- Close Chrome and Open it up again.
I recently took quite a lot of photos with wrong color temperature (white balance) settings. It is easy to correct the color temperature if the photos are in RAW format. However, all my photos were shot in JPEG format and they are not easy to change. Most image editing tools allow you to adjust the color level or saturation, but not color temperature. I found this GIMP script which does let you manipulate the color temperature directly.
The script is called colortemp and it works with GIMP 2.2, 2.4 and 2.6. Here is the site. To install it, just download the script file colortemp.scm and put it in the script directory of your GIMP installation. On Windows, this location is
C:\Program Files (x86)\GIMP-2.0\share\gimp\2.0\scripts
Once you have it installed. Open up a photo that you want to modify. The information you need to enter is the color temperature of the original file and the target temperature you want to set. There are two ways to specify the original color temperature. If you know the original color temperature, you can use the slider to specify it. Otherwise, you can use the color picker to pick a white spot on your photo and the program would determine the color temperature for you automatically. For some reason, the first option did not work for me, while the second option worked pretty well.
Click on Filters -> Colors -> Convert Color Temperature to bring up the dialog box.
Click on the drop down box and select From foreground color. Click on the toolbox and select the color picker tool. Use the color picker tool to select a white or gray spot on your photo to set it as the foreground color. Now back to the dialog box and use the slider to specify the target temperature or enter it in the box. You can leave Intensity or Saturation unchanged. Click on OK and the script would change the color temperature for you. If you do not like the changes, simply press Ctrl + Z to undo it.
If you do not know what is the correct color temperature to use for the target temperature, you can read this article to get a better idea about the topic.
Daz3d.com is offering its flagship products for free between now and February 29, 2012. Here is a list of the free products:
- DAZ Studio 4 Pro (Including Genesis, winner of 3D World’s 2011 Software Innovation of the Year Award) : Retail $429.95
- Bryce 7 Pro 3D Landscape and Animation Software: Retail $249.95
- Hexagon 2.5 3D Modeling Software: Retail $149.95
- 3D Photoshop Bridge: Retail $199.00 (Included with DAZ Studio 4 Pro)
More and more software are being distributed as ISO images now. The ISO images are designed to be burned to a DVD or a CD. It is a good idea to have them on a form of media if you need to use them on a different machine. Unfortunately, it is not very practical if you just need to access some files on the ISO image. I have used a program called MagicISO to mount the ISO images as drives, so that I could extract files. However, it is a resident program, and I would rather have a program that can just open the ISO images and extract files as needed.
I found this the other day when I accidentally right-clicked on an ISO image. There are several options under 7-zip menu. If you right-click on an ISO image, click on 7-Zip and Extract files… . This extracts all the files from the ISO image.
If you just want to browse what is in the ISO image, you can right-click on the image and click on 7-Zip -> Open archive. This allows you to see the file names first, without extracting them.
HyperCam 3 – is a new version of the famous HyperCam, being jointly developed with Hyperionics LLC. It is an advanced utility for capturing screen actions and saving them as .AVI, WMV/ASF files. Though HyperCam may be used just for grabbing a movie or game, it has been chiefly acknowledged as an excellent tool for creating video presentations, tutorials or demo-clips. Stylish, intuitive and user-friendly interface, pre-defined hot-keys for recording actions, built-in video editor, comprehensive text notes workflow, various settings, command line interface, small installation size and more than affordable price – that is what makes HyperCam 3 a must-have tool.
The main advantages of HyperCam 3 over HyperCam 2:
- new skinned user-friendly interface
- able to grab video in overlay mode
- able to edit captured video with HyperCam Media Editor
- able to encode captured sound
- usefull, tiny HyperCam tray tool-bar
- visual managing by recently recorded clips
- ability to choose audio channel
A user came to me today because Skype would no longer run on her laptop. Whenever she tried to run it, she got this message.
“The instruction at “0x00ae8cd8″ referenced memory at “0×00000004″. The memory could not be read.” “Click OK to terminate the program.”
She tried to install an older version of Skype, but it did not work. I initially thought it might be the hard drive, but the hard drive passed the diagnostic test.
It turned out to be an outage of Skype’s servers. The outage had caused a corrupted file on some users’ computers. The fix was to delete the corrupted file or install the latest version of Skype. Here is the link to delete the corrupted file.
I followed the instructions and deleted the corrupted shared.xml. The Skype started without any problem afterward.
Firefox 4 features a newly designed user interface, and it looks more like the Google Chrome browser now. The new design saves a lot of on-screen real estate and is good for a laptop screen. However, you might not like the new design- instead, you want the classic look back. Fortunately, it’s not difficult to revert to the original design. Here are the steps:
- Right click on the toolbar to bring up a context menu. We will use this context menu exclusively for our classic UI.
- Check Menu Bar to enable it.
- Right click on the toolbar and check Bookmarks Toolbar to enable it.
- Right click on the toolbar and check Add-on Bar to enable it.
- Right click on the toolbar and uncheck Tabs on Top to disable it.
- Right click on the toolbar and click on Customize to customize the Navigation Toolbar. You can then select the buttons on the toolbar and rearrange them. I moved the Home, Refresh and Stop buttons to the left side. Click on Done when you are finished.
Here is a screenshot of the original Firefox 4 UI.
Here is a screenshot of the classic UI after customization.
We started to install Acrobat Reader X on new computers. Here are the command line switches for the setup file:
/sAll Silent Mode for product
/sPB Silent Mode with Progress Bar for product
/rs Reboot Suppress
/rps Reboot Prompt Suppress
/ini "PATH" Alternative initialization file
/sl "LANG_ID" Set Language; LANG_ID - Code in decimal digits
/l Enable Error Logging
/msi[Command line] Parameters for MSIEXEC
If you want to do a silent installation, just type this:
AdbeRdr1000_en_US.exe /sAll /rs
This command installs Acrobat Reader X in silent mode and rebooting after installation is suppressed.
If you have ever downloaded the Acrobat reader from Adobe’s web site, chances are you have also unintentionally downloaded the McAfee Security Scan Plus because it comes with the reader by default. When clicked on, the program runs and asks you to purchase the full version. Even though the software is legit, the behavior is like a spyware. This is very annoying in an enterprise environment.
I have gotten several requests from my users to uninstall the program. Here is a tip for system admins. You can do silent uninstallation by putting this command into a script.
"%ProgramFiles%\McAfee Security Scan\uninstall.exe" /S
"%ProgramFiles(x86)%\McAfee Security Scan\uninstall.exe" /S
This works with the McAfee Security Scan Plus version 2.0 that is downloaded from Adobe. It does not work with the latest version 3.0.
Netflix has started to add subtitles/captions to some of its streaming content. However, the selection is quite limited. When searching for a solution, I found this article on how to convert subtitles to a format that is compatible for Netflix players on PC and Mac. The original post is about using a Python script to convert the subtitles. One reader has suggested the Jubler program. I tried both methods, and they worked pretty well.
Here is a step by step guide about how to convert subtitles for Netflix player using Jubler. The movie used in this example is Batman: Under The Red Hood.
- Download Jubler from this site and install it.
- Go online and find a subtitles file for the movie you want to watch. OpenSubtitles.org is a good place to find subtitles. I found the subtitles file for Batman: Under The Red Hood here.
- Run Jubler and open the subtitles file you downloaded on step 2.
- Click on File -> Preferences and the Jubler Preferences dialog shows up.
- Click on the Save tab and select W3C Timed Text (*.xml) as the Format. Click on Accept to close the dialog.
- (Optional) The timing of the subtitles and the movie may not be in sync because of the extra padding Netflix has added to the beginning of the film like Starz Play. You can add a delay to the subtitles to shift the timing. Click on the first subtitle to select it. Scroll down to the very bottom and click on the last subtitle while holding the shift key to select all subtitles. Click on Tools -> Shift time to add the delay.
- Click on File -> Save as to save the subtitles. Note that the subtitles file has a .xml extension.
- Change the extension of the file from .xml to .dfxp .
- Log on to Netflix and start the movie. You might want to pause the movie before you add the subtitles.
- Press Ctrl+Alt+Shift+M on PC or Control+Option+Shift+M on Mac to bring up the Diagnostics menu.
- Click on Load Custom DFXP File and select the .dfxp file you created on step 8.
You can now enjoy the movie with subtitles!