The Download Blog

Mozilla gunning for universal bookmarks and browsing history with project Weave

Mozilla's new project called Weave is an exciting new add-on to Mozilla's popular browser Firefox. While in its infancy, the service plans to be a way for users to save and access their personal browsing information across multiple machines. It's a little bit like Google's Web history,, and a Web password saver all wrapped up into one.

Some use cases for Weave (as listed by Mozilla) include: accessing your history and bookmarks from your home version of Firefox on your mobile Firefox browser, shared/collaborative bookmarking, and personalization tools to let you log … Read more

Software that's ready for takeoff in 2008

It's hard to predict the next Twitter or Facebook, and that's what makes massive overnight, now-we're-worth-fifteen-billion-dollars success (or not) so gosh darn breathtaking. I mean, did Facebook know it was going to be Facebook?!

So my point is, we go on what we've got when predicting which software is going to turn heads. This list has been compiled partly by educated guesswork and partly by whimsy. Chances are, the software that ends up meaning something to people, we've never seen coming. It's probably not even a glimmer in its developer's eye.

If I turn out to be wildly off-base in my predictions, even better. Groaning at gross miscalculations from tech's crystal ball is part of what makes making them so much fun. Without further ado, here's the lineup.… Read more

Top 10 most popular stories of 2007

At CNET, we're aware that the majority of users only visit the site when they want to download the latest version of a specific software title or a specific type of software, e.g. something to convert Flash videos for your iPod or PSP. However, aside from the trusted downloadable software, games, and music that billions of users have come to know and love, also produces a large amount of original content, whether it's from the editors themselves, CNET Reviews or editors, or the expanded CNET Blog Network.… Read more

Power Downloader: Best adventures of 2007

With the holidays over and only a few days to go in 2007, Power Downloader decided to take a look back at the year to relive some of his more exciting adventures. Always knowing which software to download in a given emergency is never easy, but having at his disposal definitely helps when on the trail of an Internet bad guy.

Looking through his case files, Power Downloader remembered the time when he had to get a new laptop computer. As with anytime Power needs to get a new computer, he knew he wouldn't be comfortable until … Read more

GlideFree Web mail gets an 'A' for effort, a 'B' for everything else

High on my list of New Year's resolutions for 2008, no joke: e-mail friends more often. Since time is a major constraint, I want my e-mail interface easy to get around, an enabler for quick composition. Write it up, send it out. These are the greatest drawbacks to GlideFree, Glide's beta Web mail release, which has over-enthusiastically swaddled some useful and even clever functionality in unnecessary layers.

For example, GlideFree simplifies the attachment process by bringing attachable multimedia options to you in a drop-down menu, rather than making you embark on the usual hunting and pecking expedition for the files scattered all over your directory. Bravo! Then it ruins the fun by forcing the recipient to open three separate browser tabs just to view an attached video.

And why, for instance, is there no field for simply typing in a destination address? Why must you click into the address book and add even one-time recipients, and then navigate an additional drop-down menu each time you select a repeat contact? In another head-scratcher, there's a short drop-down list of symbols in the beneficial built-in word processor--math symbols. Somehow it was determined that users would favor the 'not equal' sign and Greek 'beta' to accents, tildes, and trademark symbols.… Read more

Convert Firefox into a text-only browser

Last week I described how to use a simple Javascript to determine the age of a Web page. The only problem: if the page has any dynamic elements that update automatically when the page loads (and these days most Web pages do), the script shows the current time and date.

For pages without auto-update content, type javascript:alert(document.lastModified) into the address bar and press Enter to see a window pop-up with the date and time of the page's last update. I'm still looking for a way to find out how recently specific content on a Web … Read more

Windows Starter Kit

So whichever gift-giving deity you believe in has smiled on you this season and you're the recipient of a brand-new machine. Or maybe the computer gods have decided that December was the time for your PC to join that great server farm in the sky.

Either way, you're in need of some new programs. Free programs. You're in luck: CNET has compiled a brand-new Windows Starter Kit, complete with all that your freeware-coveting heart could ever desire. This year we bring you a Web Browser, an E-mail Client, Office and Productivity tools, Image Editors, Music and Video Jukeboxes, … Read more

New Mac owners: Start here!

So, you were one of the lucky people to receive a shiny new Mac for the holidays. We're all jealous! But if you're reading this, you've probably already spent some time getting set up and checking out all the cool features and programs that come with your Mac--and now you want more! Out of the box, your Mac is loaded with cool apps to get you started on stuff like uploading and organizing your digital images, creating a music library, making your own movies, and surfing the Web. (You're here, so it must have worked!)

While … Read more

Security Starter Kit

With a new year comes new computers, and that means new security problems. Viruses, spyware, rootkits, hackers--a fresh machine can be susceptible to the most insidious of plots. Lucky for you, here in the CNET defense bunker, we've devised a list of essential and free top-rated security programs to protect the honor of your computer and ensure that your sanity will last longer than your resolutions.

Read more

Transplant surgery for your infected hard drive

What do you do when the spyware you're trying to pluck free from a hard drive is smarter than it looks? If you're most people, something drastic involving extra money, time, or hired professionals. If you're Ravi, something else entirely.

Find out the trick up Ravi's sleeve in this week's Spyware Horror Story.

>>See all Spyware Horror Stories