Tag Archives: browser add-on

TuneTune – YouTube To MP3 Converter Browser Add-on

imageSt. Patrick’s Day is over for another year – and, thank goodness for that. Along with New Years Eve, St. Paddy’s Day, it seems to me, brings out the worst in the non-drinking drinkers who load-up well past their capacity to handle the juice of the barley. As an Irishman (of some renown   Smile ), I do celebrate St. Patrick’s Day – but, in comfort – at home – with good friends – and, a boatload of Guinness.

Traditional Irish music, along with good craic (conversation), plays an essential role in properly celebrating Ireland’s patron saint. So, this year, as in previous years, I turned to YouTube audio ripping to augment my collection of  traditional Irish music (no, not Danny Boy, When Irish Eyes Are Smiling, or the like).

Ripping music from YouTube videos is a quarrelsome question. There are those who consider anything downloaded for personal use to be legal. There are those who consider downloading anything that is copyrighted to be illegal – under any circumstances.

The YouTube audio ripping situation presents a different set of legal issues though, it seems to me. I’m not sure I see the difference between saving a YouTube video to disk (which loads of people do), for later playback – and, simply ripping the audio portion for later playback.

There are any number of ways to extract audio from YouTube videos, but many are cumbersome and time consuming. There is a solution thought, that’s neither cumbersome, or  time consuming – TuneTune, a freeware YouTube to MP3 converter. Once this browser add-on is configured, it’s one click simple – more or less.

Following installation, the add-on will append an icon to the toolbar or status bar. This icon will go from gray to color (as shown in the following screen captures), when you’re visiting a YouTube page.

Non YouTube page:

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YouTube page:

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Clicking on the icon will convert the video from YouTube, to MP3, in one click.

Additional choices are available in the options menu – as shown below.

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Here’s a quick walkthrough which will illustrate how quick and convenient this browser add-0n is.

First up – a visit to a YouTube page hosting the Neil Diamond tune – “Hello Again.”

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Since I obviously have the add-on installed, you’ll notice the TuneTune icon displayed (in the screen capture above), directly on the YouTube page. A simple click on the icon begins the conversion process – as shown below. BTW, pasting the YouTube link is not necessary.

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Following the file conversion, users have the opportunity to customize the converted file, in a limited way – as shown below.

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The following screen shot shows the converted file in the directory which I created specifically for this test.

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Elapsed time (clicking on the icon to file download completion) – under 15 seconds. That’s fast!

Supported browsers:

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TuneTune is available in multiple languages. The current language is changeable by clicking on your language of choice in the footer.

Visit the author’s site – here (TuneTune.net).

8 Comments

Filed under Audio Software, Browser add-ons, downloads, Freeware, Software, YouTube

Tile Tabs 4.9 – Firefox Tabbed Horizontally, Vertically Or In A Grid

This past week, I’ve reviewed Dexpot – an application which, in the freeware version, will allow you to work with up to twenty separate and distinct virtual Desktops, as well as Slickscreen – an Internet Browser which takes advantage of high resolution displays by dividing the screen into separate windows.

In keeping with this theme, regular reader Michael Fisher recently introduced me to Tile Tabs, a very cool Firefox browser add-on which gives a user the ability to arrange tabs in a tile format – horizontally, vertically or in a grid. Additional tile control features include – re-sizing by dragging splitter bars – dragging links from one tile to another  to open in the selected tile (I found this feature very useful).

Following installation, you’ll notice a new menu has been added to the Firefox Menu Bar.

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Additionally, you have the option of  adding a Tile Tabs button to the Toolbar by right-clicking the Toolbar and choosing “Customize”.

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More important, at least from my perspective (as a context menu fanatic), are the new commands added to the “right click” context menu.

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Setting your specific preferences is easy using the options menu – available through the Add-ons Manager.

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The focused tab (currently selected tile), is bracketed by a colored border. The border color is selectable.

Tile Tabs Options

Here’s a view of Tile Tabs in action showing four opened tabs.

Click on graphic to expand to original.

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System requirements: Firefox 3.6 – 6.

Download at: Mozilla

You might not need this add-on every time you surf the Net. Still, just having it available for those times when it could come in handy, seems like a smart move.

I must admit, I’ve found it very useful, these last few nights, as I watched the Stanley Cup Finals hockey games (streaming live), in a tiled tab – as I continued with my regular work on the Net. Thank you Michael!

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3 Comments

Filed under Browser add-ons, Browsers, downloads, Firefox, Firefox Add-ons, Freeware, Software, Windows Tips and Tools

BitDefender TrafficLight – Real-time Anti-virus, Anti-phishing Browser Add-on

imageSurfing the Internet without a site reputation Browser add-on is not much different than stumbling down a set of stairs in the dark – while blindfolded. At a minimum, a risky venture.

As with all applications designed to enhance Internet safety however, site reputation Browser add-ons are not without there shortcomings. One particular issue that raises concern is – reputation add-ons are site specific and not page specific. In other words, the site may have passed the test for safety and yet contain a page, or pages, that harbor threats.

BitDefender’s recently released (March 24, 2011), beta – TrafficLight Browser add-on, attempts to address this page specific issue by utilizing “the BitDefender scanning engines to check, and rate, every page and link from the users’ web traffic, blocking unsafe content before it reaches the user’s browser.” In an effort to cover all the bases, TrafficLight is active in in search engines, and social networking sites (Facebook and Twitter), as well.

Control Panel screen capture.

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Fast facts:

TrafficLight works with virtually any Windows-compatible browser. It even keeps look, feel and functionality consistent if you switch browsers.

TrafficLight intercepts and scans web traffic before it even reaches the browser, effectively blocking disguised or stealth attacks before it’s too late.

TrafficLight scans the pages you visit for malware and phishing attempts each and every time you access them to avoid the threat of legitimate but recently compromised websites.

TrafficLight won’t block an entire website if just some pages within are malicious. Only the potentially harmful elements are blocked, leaving you free to view the rest of the site if you so choose.

TrafficLight relies on intelligence provided by BitDefender Cloud services to flag malware and phishing attempts in search results from Google or Bing. Not only that, but it also checks links in popular social network platforms and blocks them if they are suspect.

TrafficLight does not add a toolbar to your already-cluttered browser interface. Its interface remains invisible until your input is needed or it’s called up with a simple mouse gesture.

Supported Operating systems: Microsoft Windows XP SP2, Windows Vista SP2, Windows 7.

Supported Browsers:
Internet Explorer 7+, Opera, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, Safari.

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Download free TrafficLight at: BitDefender

Note: As with all beta, or release candidates, take sensible precautions prior to installation. This should include setting a new restore point.

Additional reading:

WOT Beta for Social Media – Facebook, Twitter Protection And More

Free BufferZone Pro – Maybe The Best Surfing Virtualization Application At Any Price

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12 Comments

Filed under Anti-Malware Tools, BitDefender, Browser add-ons, Browsers, Cyber Crime, Don't Get Hacked, downloads, FaceBook, Free Internet Protection, Freeware, Internet Safety Tools, Malware Protection, Online Safety, Safe Surfing, Software, Spyware - Adware Protection, System Security, Twitter, Windows Tips and Tools

Replace Gmail’s Ads With Rapportive – A Free Social Network Tool

If you use Gmail, then you know that it can be difficult to ignore the mass of Ads which Google salts into your Inbox pane. I hear from many Gmail users that they find these Ads both annoying, and distracting. On the other hand, it’s fair to say, that there are those who find the Ads provide useful links and products.

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There are a number of ways to stop these Ads from running, if you find them annoying. If you’re a Firefox user install the WebMail Ad Blocker add-on. Or, if you’re a Chrome user install the Chrome extension – Hide Gmail Ads. Instead of the Ads, you will be left with white space.

Rather than simply letting the white space sit there uselessly, you can put it to work. Rapportive, a Browser plugin which is compatible with Firefox, Safari, and Chrome, replaces Google’s Ads with available information on the sender and the email address, which can include – who they are, where they’re located, what they do, and any additional information which is available from social network sites.

It wouldn’t be reasonable (given privacy considerations), to show Rapportive at work using a contact as an example, so I’ve used a test email to myself to illustrate.

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While Rapportive may not be for everyone, for socially active users I see it as a worthwhile “keep in touch” tool, since it keys in on social networks. At a personal level, since I receive quite a number of emails from technology companies every day, I’ve found the information Rapportive provides, very helpful.

I now have much more information regarding the company, and company contact person, than I had access to previously, which allows contact on a more personal level – always a good thing in business.

Operating Systems: Windows XP, Vista, Win 7.

Requirements: Gmail account; Firefox, Safari, Mailplane, Chrome.

Download at: Rapportive

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4 Comments

Filed under Browser add-ons, Browser Plug-ins, Chrome, Chrome Add-ons, downloads, Email, Firefox Add-ons, Freeware, Gmail, Google, Google Chrome, Interconnectivity, Safari add-ons, Social Networks, Software

CoolPreviews – You Ruined My Day!

OK, maybe “you ruined my day”, is an exaggeration, but…..

Let me start by saying I love CoolPreviews – a Picture-in-a-Picture free Browser add-on, that lets me preview links and rich media content, without clicking the link, or leaving my current page.

I use this tool every day to confirm that the links in my “Tech Thoughts Daily Net News” column are live. The screen capture below illustrates how this works.

CoolPreviews bug

I just cursored over the link, in this case ““CNET Free Security Starter Kit: Refined for 2010”, and CoolPreviews opened a preview window of the referenced link. Pretty cool, no?

But then there was yesterday. CoolPreviews, you definitely tried my patience.

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Early in the morning on opening my primary Browser, Firefox, I was greeted by loud PacMan like music that I could not shut down. First thought – a malware infection. Drat – the first one in two years; maybe even longer.

Since mornings are a huge rush time for me, I simply closed Firefox and opened Chrome. Hmm, no PacMan music. So, probably not a system wide infection, but a possible Firefox infection.

After finishing what work I could using Chrome, I turned to the problem with Firefox. I won’t go through the whole process, but it went something like this:

Booted to Avira Rescue Disk – no infections found.

Ran on board Microsoft Security Essentials, Malwarebytes Free Edition (secondary scanner), and SuperAntiSpyWare Free Edition (secondary scanner). No joy.

Uninstalled Firefox using Revo Uninstaller, since it was important to remove all Registry entries.

Reinstalled Firefox and launched – hey, no PacMan music.

Ran MozBackup to restore my add-ons, bookmarks, mail, contacts, history, extensions, passwords, cache etc.

Relaunched Firefox – oh no, PacMan Music. But some headway – now I know that the likely cause is a compromised Firefox add-on.

Disabled all add-ons, and then re-enabled one at a time, until CoolPreviews  proved to be the guilty party.

Now, this whole exercise didn’t take all that long – the biggest time waster was in running deep scanning mode with my AVs. Diagnosing the problem after this part of the process, was a no-brainer.

Later in the day, CoolIris, the CoolPreview developer, finally posted on this problem. Here’s what  they had to say:

Google launched a homepage today which features an interactive PacMan game, with music, sirens, etc. If CoolPreviews is enabled, the music plays even if you don’t have Google opened in your browser tab. We apologize for this inconvenience.

But, that’s hardly what I call an explanation. The real cause of this  “bug” was pre-fetching. In this case, CoolPreviews pre-fetching the Google Home page. So, here’s a suggestion for CoolPreviews – STOP pre-fetching.

Pre-fetching might appear to be sexy but it is not universally admired. Some of the issues include, unwanted cookies, increased bandwidth usage, and  possible exploitation by unwanted sites.

In any event, this “bug” issue won’t dissuade me from using CoolPreviews. In the long run, it’s just too valuable in my day to day computing.

If you found this article useful, why not subscribe to this Blog via RSS, or email? It’s easy; just click on this link and you’ll never miss another Tech Thoughts article.

18 Comments

Filed under Browser add-ons, Browsers, downloads, Free Anti-malware Software, Freeware, Interconnectivity, Manual Malware Removal, Software, Uninstall Tools, Windows Tips and Tools

Free KeyScrambler – Encrypt Your Internet Input

KeyScrambler Personal – A Must Have Browser Plug-in

Keylogger pic

This article was prompted by a situation one of my Blogging buddies ran into recently. Apparently, a friend of his was having a problem with his Internet connection, and major problems with his email sign-ins.

This problem, as it turned out, was a typical case of a compromised password – not a particularly unusual event. To ensure your passwords are as safe as you can make them, consider adding KeyScrambler Personal to your Browser.

KeyScrambler Personal is a free plug-in for FireFox, Internet Explorer, and Flock web browsers which protects all input you type into the browser, by encrypting your keystrokes at the kernel driver level.

Cyber-crooks are relentless in their pursuit of your money and let’s face it – it’s all about the money. In the worst case scenario, your identity and your financial security can be severely compromised.

Despite the best efforts of AntiSpyware, AntiVirus, and other Internet security products, you still face substantial risks while surfing the Internet. One type of malware that can expose you to financial risk is the Keylogger.

A Keylogger is a form of spyware which, once installed on a computer, can record every keystroke that is made on that computer, and transmit those keystrokes back to a cyber-criminal. The function of a Keylogger is to steal passwords, bank account numbers, and other personal information.

KeyScrambler 2

When you type on your keyboard, the input travels along a path within the operating system before it arrives at your browser. Keyloggers plant themselves along this path and observe and record your keystrokes. The compromised information is then sent to the cyber criminal who will exploit your passwords, bank account numbers, and other personal information.

By encrypting your keystrokes at the keyboard driver level, deep within the operating system, a Keylogger can be beaten since it can only record the encrypted keys, which are indecipherable.

Unlike AntiVirus and AntiSpyware programs that depend on recognition to remove Keyloggers that they know about, KeyScrambler will protect you from both known and unknown Keyloggers.

I’ve been using this great little plug-in for over a year and I feel more secure logging in than I once did. Despite this, I change all of my passwords frequently, since doing so, is just common sense.

Quick facts:

Protects user input in all parts of the browser against key-loggers.

Protects login credentials, credit card numbers, passwords, search terms and more

Works with IE, FireFox, and Flock: Java, Flash, PDF Forms

Email protection including Yahoo, Hotmail, and Gmail.

No learning curve.

Protects against Keyloggers even on security compromised computers

Requires no effort on your part after installation

In the top 5 FireFox Extensions for security and privacy

System Requirements: Windows 2000, 2003, XP, Vista (32-bit and 64-bit), and Windows 7 (32-bit and 64-bit).

Download at: Download.com

Setting your password correctly is vitally important to ensure your safety and privacy, on the Internet. Read how to do this correctly by visiting TechPauls site, and taking a look at “A Word About Words — Passwords, That Is”, which includes a link to a freeware application which makes password management a snap.

If you found this article useful, why not subscribe to this Blog via RSS, or email? It’s easy; just click on this link and you’ll never miss another Tech Thoughts article.

47 Comments

Filed under Anti-Keyloggers, Browser add-ons, cybercrime, Don't Get Scammed, Don't Get Hacked, downloads, Firefox Add-ons, Freeware, Internet Explorer Add-ons, Internet Safety Tools, Windows 7, Windows Tips and Tools, Windows Vista, Windows XP

Don’t Sign-in on the Internet Without KeyScrambler

KeyScrambler Personal – A Must Have Browser Plug-in

Keylogger pic

This article was prompted by a situation one of my Blogging buddies ran into recently. Apparently, a friend of his was having a problem with his Internet connection and major problems with his email sign-ins.

This problem, in all likelihood, was a typical case of a compromised password – not a particularly unusual event. To ensure your passwords are as safe as you can make them, consider adding KeyScrambler Personal to your Browser.

KeyScrambler Personal is a free plug-in for FireFox, Internet Explorer, and Flock web browsers which protects all input you type into the browser from Keyloggers.

This free version of KeyScrambler encrypts your keystrokes at the kernel driver level.

Cyber-crooks are relentless in their pursuit of your money and let’s face it – it’s all about the money. In the worst case scenario, your identity and your financial security can be severely compromised.

Despite the best efforts of AntiSpyware, AntiVirus, and other Internet security products, you still face substantial risks while surfing the Internet. One type of malware that can expose you to financial risk is the Keylogger.

A Keylogger is a form of spyware which, once installed on a computer, can record every keystroke that is made on that computer, and transmit those keystrokes back to a cyber-criminal. The function of a Keylogger is to steal passwords, bank account numbers, and other personal information.

KeyScrambler 2

When you type on your keyboard, the input travels along a path within the operating system before it arrives at your browser. Keyloggers plant themselves along this path and observe and record your keystrokes. The compromised information is then sent to the cyber criminal who will exploit your passwords, bank account numbers, and other personal information.

By encrypting your keystrokes at the keyboard driver level, deep within the operating system, a Keylogger can be beaten since it can only record the encrypted keys, which are indecipherable.

Unlike AntiVirus and AntiSpyware programs that depend on recognition to remove Keyloggers that they know about, KeyScrambler will protect you from both known and unknown Keyloggers.

I’ve been using this great little plug-in for months now and feel more secure logging in than I once did. Despite this, I change all of my passwords frequently, since doing so, is just common sense.

By the way, it works flawlessly on Windows7 RC.

Quick facts:

Protects user input in all parts of the browser against key-loggers.

Protects login credentials, credit card numbers, passwords, search terms and more

Works with IE, FireFox, and Flock: Java, Flash, PDF Forms

Email protection including Yahoo, Hotmail, and Gmail.

No learning curve.

Protects against Keyloggers even on security compromised computers

Requires no effort on your part after installation

In the top 5 FireFox Extensions for security and privacy

System Requirements: Windows 2000, 2003, XP, Vista (32-bit and 64-bit), and Windows 7

Download at: Download.com

Setting your password correctly is vitally important to ensure your safety and privacy, on the Internet. Read how to do this correctly by visiting TechPauls site, and taking a look at “A Word About Words — Passwords, That Is”, which includes a link to a freeware application which makes password management a snap.

11 Comments

Filed under Anti-Keyloggers, Anti-Malware Tools, Browser add-ons, Don't Get Hacked, Firefox Add-ons, Free Security Programs, Freeware, Interconnectivity, Internet Explorer Add-ons, Online Safety, Software, Spyware - Adware Protection, System Security, Windows Tips and Tools