The Download Blog

Featured Freeware: RegAssassin

It requires care when using, but this portable executable eliminates unwanted Registry keys. RegAssassin's business-like interface sports only a text entry box, a pair of check boxes, and a function button. Using it requires experience editing the Registry, but for some pernicious malicious software, deleting their registry entries is part of the cleaning process. The program does display warning messages, but inexperienced users could easily crash their system by deleting an important Registry key.

Operating RegAssassin is simple and quick. Users merely enter a Registry key name and delete the key with a single button click. The application includes … Read more

Featured Freeware: Process Terminator

Greatly improve your process-killing ability with Process Terminator, a utility with a simple list-and-button interface that is immediately operable by intermediate to advanced users. You probably won't even crack open the simple four-paragraph Help screen.

Operating Process Terminator is intuitive and simple. On start, the app loads the list of running processes. Selecting a process displays its start time, total CPU time utilized, maximum physical memory used and amount allocated, thread count, handle count, and whether the Process UI is responding. Double-clicking a listed name opens the folder where the process is located. Any process is easily killed with … Read more

iPhone apps of the week

Now that the holiday shopping season is in full swing, maybe it's time to let Santa know he can always get you a gift certificate to the iTunes store so you can buy more apps! While there are plenty of great free offerings available, I've come across a couple of fun games in the paid section that might be perfect as a stocking stuffer. But just so you have something to download today, I discovered a great free game for those who don't want to fork over their hard cold cash.

TouchGrind ($4.99) is a high-quality … Read more

Featured Freeware: 'ESPN Cameraman'

This fun, free game for the iPhone requires fast fingers and judicious judgment. In ESPN Cameraman, you try to quickly find five differences between two nearly identical sports photos. Gameplay here is similar to popular electronic bar games like Photo Finder, albeit minus the scantily clad subjects. This one is definitely safe for children, although you might become a victim of the economy if you play it at work.

Touch the screen wherever you spot a difference on either photo while beating a countdown timer to keep from losing a life. You have three lives per game, as well as … Read more

Second Firefox 3.1 beta due 'very shortly'

Update 6:15 p.m. PST: An earlier version of this story said the second beta version of Firefox 3.1 would likely be the last. Firefox is planning a third beta version. Also, added a comment from Paul Rouget about when the second beta version will likely be released.

The second beta version of Firefox 3.1 is "due out very shortly," Mozilla programmer Ben Turner said Thursday.

One big change in the 3.1b2 is the addition of "Web workers," a feature that lets the browser process tasks in the background. That feature, part … Read more

Handy app bypasses AT&T's ridiculous iPhone Wi-Fi sign-up process

"They wrote this for you," Josh said in IM to me about Devicescape's Easy Wi-Fi for AT&T, an app that directly addresses my complaints about the free Wi-Fi that AT&T now provides to iPhone users at Starbucks and various airports.

As I wrote, I dislike the Safari/SMS two-step required to authorize the iPhone to use the AT&T free Wi-Fi. Yes, it's looking a gift horse in the mouth. But I am a professional crank. I really do get paid for this.

Anyway, the Easy Wi-Fi app bypasses the SMS … Read more

Opera 10 alpha: Compliant and faster--but not fastest

A correction was made to this story. See below for details.

Testing Opera 10 alpha confirms it can boast that it's the second browser in development that is fully compliant with the Acid3 benchmarks. It's also markedly faster than Opera 9.62 at processing JavaScript, but it's half as fast as the fastest Web browser currently available.

On both Windows and Mac OS, it was no surprise to see the Acid3 standards test come up 100 out of 100 since that was the big news from Opera Software earlier today. The browser is also three times faster … Read more

This Kraken fights for good

If you're up on your pirate lore, or perhaps have your Pirates of the Caribbean plot flow-chart handy, you'll know that sea-faring criminals are no friends of Johnny Depp-devouring monsters. As it goes on the high CGI seas, so follow the stormy waters of the Firefox add-on world. Yesterday's Pirates of the Amazon plug-in, which adds torrent links to songs and movies in the store, is met today by The Kraken, a plug-in that adds links to torrent Web sites.

The Kraken is extremely simple and there's no configuration required. When you … Read more

Boxee gets support for Netflix streaming

Boxee is releasing on Thursday a new version of its media center software that adds support for Netflix Watch Instantly streaming movies.

Unlike streaming solutions from Roku and Microsoft's Xbox 360, Boxee's effort includes the option to both browse and search through Netflix's library. Roku's box and the Xbox are currently limited to showing users the videos from their saved queues. The two also require special hardware (and in the Xbox's case a paid Xbox Live Gold membership), whereas Boxee works on any Intel-Mac or Linux PC. Boxee's service is not yet available for … Read more

Chrome developer version bashes Street View bug

Google on Wednesday night released the new version of its Chrome browser to bash a bug that bit me by blackening the new big-screen version of Street View.

Indeed, I no longer get the problem. Now if the company could get its Google Earth browser plug-in to work with Chrome, it would look more like Google's right hand is cooperating with its left hand.

According to Chrome Program Manager Mark Larson, the new version also fixes "trackpad scrolling on more laptops (and the) Sogou Pinyin Chinese input method editor skipping the first letter typed.&… Read more