Tag Archives: document

You Can Be A Computer Detective Too, With OSForensics Beta

imageThe CSI TV franchise is great entertainment – but that’s what it is – entertainment. Nevertheless, the investigative techniques, despite the fact they are, in the main, pure science fiction – are pretty convincing.

One area where television productions, like this, and movies for that matter, generally get it right is – computer forensic investigation. While this type of investigation, with the investigators fingers flying across the keyboard, appears to be complex, in fact – the process is generally driven by software that is well organized, and logically constructed.

If you would like to try your hand at being a computer “Sherlock Holmes”, then checkout OSForensics Beta (latest release February 4, 2011), a menu driven forensic application that will allow you to identify, extract, document, and interpret data, on your computer.

The GUI is laid out in a functional and logical step by step process – easy to understand and navigate.

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I won’t cover all of the capabilities of OSForensics ( I don’t want to spoil all your investigative fun), but as an example, the application can scan a system for evidence of recent activity, including accessed websites, USB drives, wireless networks, recent downloads, website logins and website passwords.

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Just one example – in the screen shot below, you can see that the application has captured my login password (blacked out for privacy), for my Hotmail account.

OSF

The deleted file recovery function is particularly powerful and the application provides a graphical view of the allocation of the deleted file clusters on the physical disk.

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Fast facts:

Search for Emails – An additional feature of being able to search within files is the ability to search email archives. The indexing process can open and read most popular email file formats (including pst) and identify the individual messages.

Recover Deleted Files – After a file has been deleted, even once removed from the recycling bin, it often still exists until another new file takes its place on the hard drive. OSForensics can track down this ghost file data and attempt to restore it back to useable state on the hard drive.

Uncover Recent Activity – Find out what users have been up to. OSForensics can uncover the user actions performed recently on the system, including but not limited to:

Opened Documents

Web Browsing History

Connected USB Devices

Connected Network Shares

Collect System Information – Find out what’s inside the computer. Detailed information about the hardware a system is running on:

CPU type and number of CPUs

Amount and type of RAM

Installed Hard Drives

Connected USB devices, and much more.

View Active Memory – Look directly at what is currently in the systems main memory. Attempt to uncover passwords and other sensitive information that would otherwise be inaccessible. Select from a list of active processes on the system to inspect. OSF can also dump their memory to a file on disk for later inspection.

Extract Logins and Passwords – Recover usernames and passwords from recently accessed websites in common web browsers, including Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome and Opera.

While the application is designed as a forensic recovery tool, I can think of a number of uses for this application (since it can be run from USB drive), over and above its expressed purpose. I’m sure you can too.

System requirements: Windows XP, Vista, Win 7, Server 2000, 2003, 2008 (32bit and 64bit support – 64bit recommended). Minimum 1GB of RAM. (4GB+ recommended), 30MB of free disk space – can be run from USB drive.

Download the beta at: PassMark Software

There are a number of worthwhile additional free tools which can be used in conjunction with OSForensics. Checkout the developer’s site here.

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8 Comments

Filed under Beta Software, Computer Audit Applications, Computer Forensic Tools, Computer Tools, Deleted File Recovery, Freeware, Geek Software and Tools, Software, System Utilities

Desktop Publishing Free – SerifSoft PagePlus SE

Interested in producing a family newsletter, a business newsletter, a company newsletter or an employee newsletter? Want to produce a clean, bright design that will enhance your newsletter’s message? Want to do it for FREE?

Well, if you answered “yes” to any of these questions; now you can.

SerifSoftware entices you in an unusual way to buy, or upgrade, to their latest software offerings. They will give you, free of charge, an older version of any of their software packages. An interesting twist on the usual “try it for free for 30 days”, we are all pretty familiar with.

Having used and tested, Serif’s free editions for 10+ years now, I find that even their older software is more than up to the tasks I set.

Sure, the applications may be older than the current versions, but in terms of functionality and features, generally you are not missing much. Most software today, tends to be overblown and bloated with features that many users have little or no need of. In these older free versions there are not as many tools as one might find with more recent products, but those that are there tend to be the ones that are most used by typical users.

PagePlus SE from Serif comes complete with Automated Templates for just about any Desktop Publishing project, making it easy to get professional quality results. If you’re comfortable using a word processor, then you’ll be comfortable with this application.

This neat little Desktop Publishing application includes a range of preset document layouts, automated templates, great color schemes and artistic effects, which will allow you to produce professional looking results.

I found the graphical user interface very intuitive and that combined with even basic word processing skills, makes the learning curve extremely short.

I have used Microsoft Publisher extensively in the past, and I found this application an acceptable substitute for all but the most complex tasks. Give it a try.

Quick Facts:

Multiple Document Types – wide range of preset document layouts to help you design professional-looking documents

Table Tool – stylish, high-impact tables

QuickShapes – array of fully customizable QuickShapes

Artistic Text – designer text with transparency effects, bitmap fills and graduated colors

Design Studio – drag ‘n’ drop access with fills, fonts, and line

Color Schemes – choose from a range of color schemes

Multiple Master Pages – multiple master pages – varied page styles – apply master pages to different sections of your publications

Automated Templates – free downloadable ready-made template packs

Graphics Inline With Text – graphics stay with their associated words

Page Manager – add, copy and delete pages or assign new master pages

On-Screen Spell Checker – automatic underlining of misspelled words.

Download at: FreeSerifSoftware

A real bonus offered by the software’s publisher is an additional 500+ templates and designs which can be downloaded at FreeSerifSoftware.

As well, you can join in discussions, share ideas and obtain support at the application’s support forum.

1 Comment

Filed under DeskTop Publishing, Free Full Versions, Freeware, Multimedia Tools, Productivity Software, Software, Windows Tips and Tools

Free Desktop Publishing! – PagePlus SE from SerifSoftware

Have you always wanted to give Desktop Publishing a try but you found the cost of a high end program prohibitive? Interested in producing a business newsletter, company newsletter or an employee newsletter? Want to produce a clean, bright design that will enhance your newsletter’s message?

Well if you answered “yes” to any of these questions; now you can do it for free.

SerifSoftware entices you in an unusual way to buy, or upgrade, to their latest software offerings. They will give you, free of charge, an older version of any of their software packages. An interesting twist on the usual “try it for free for 30 days”, we are all pretty familiar with.

Having used and tested, Serif’s free editions for 10+ years now, I find that even their older software is more than up to the tasks I set.

Sure, the applications may be older than the current versions, but in terms of functionality and features, generally you are not missing much. Most software today, tends to be overblown and bloated with features that many users have little or no need of. In these older free versions there are not as many tools as one might find with more recent products, but those that are there tend to be the ones that are most used by typical users.

PagePlus SE from Serif comes complete with Automated Templates for just about any Desktop Publishing project, making it easy to get professional quality results. If you’re comfortable using a word processor, then you’ll be comfortable with this application.

This neat little Desktop Publishing application includes a range of preset document layouts, automated templates, great color schemes and artistic effects, which will allow you to produce professional looking results.

I found the graphical user interface very intuitive and that combined with even basic word processing skills, makes the learning curve extremely short.

I have used Microsoft Publisher extensively in the past, and I found this application an acceptable substitute for all but the most complex tasks. Give it a try.

Quick Facts:

  • Multiple Document Types – wide range of preset document layouts to help you design professional-looking documents
  • Table Tool – stylish, high-impact tables
  • QuickShapes – array of fully customizable QuickShapes
  • Artistic Text – designer text with transparency effects, bitmap fills and graduated colors
  • Design Studio – drag ‘n’ drop access with fills, fonts, and line
  • Color Schemes – choose from a range of color schemes
  • Multiple Master Pages – multiple master pages – varied page styles – apply master pages to different sections of your publications
  • Automated Templates – free downloadable ready-made template packs
  • Graphics Inline With Text – graphics stay with their associated words
  • Page Manager – add, copy and delete pages or assign new master pages
  • On-Screen Spell Checker – automatic underlining of misspelled words.

Download at: FreeSerifSoftware

A real bonus offered by the software’s publisher is an additional 500+ templates and designs which can be downloaded at FreeSerifSoftware.

As well, you can join in discussions, share ideas and obtain support at the application’s support forum.

7 Comments

Filed under DeskTop Publishing, Free Full Versions, Freeware, Multimedia Tools, Productivity Software, Software, Uncategorized, Windows Tips and Tools