App and Software News

'Guitar Hero Mobile' rocks your cell phone hard

'Guitar Hero Mobile' rocks your cell phone hard

UPDATED! See below for additional comments after hours and hours of more playing time.

Addicts of Activision's Guitar Hero console game will no longer be confined to fretting their faux guitar in the living room, game room, or basement. Soon they'll be able to play from their mobile phone.

Thanks to Hands-On Mobile, a mobile games company from San Diego, I got to test my rhythm-matching mettle with Guitar Hero Mobile on a slick LG VX9400.

The first thing you'll notice... Read More »

Hands-on: Two free video-to-iPhone converters

Hands-on: Two free video-to-iPhone converters

There's no shortage of video-to-iPhone converters on the market, but these two freeware contenders do a more-than-decent job of making individual files iPhone-ready. Don't expect much interface gloss or batch conversion with either. However, both apps quickly produce workable iPhone videos without much fuss.

Free Video to iPhone Converter tells it like it is. The rough 'n' ready app takes up minimal screen space and memory. Browsing for links and converting quickly is easy, since there aren't too many additional tabs... Read More »

Break free from embedded vids

Break free from embedded vids

Two of the most effective tools I've found for keeping videos embedded in Web pages are the Free FLV Converter and RealPlayer. Yes, that RealPlayer.

RealPlayer version 11 beta comes with the ability to download embedded vids from the Internet, but it saves them as Flash video files, either in FLV or SWF formats. Neither one is particularly useful if you then want to burn the vid to a DVD or rip it to a portable device. The Free FLV Converter... Read More »

Tags: freeware , Windows software , YouTube

Hello, world!

Here's the deal:

You (the beloved Download user, the reason we're here) are out there somewhere, while I (Greg Penhaligon, product manager of Download) am way up here, sequestered in the crystalline fortress that makes up the Download Control Center. My job is to make Download into the best site of it's kind for you, but what is that exactly? What do you want? I converse with some of you in the forums, read your occasionally expletive-laden emails to customer... Read More »

Can you defrag your registry?

Can you defrag your registry?

Auslogics, publisher of the popular Auslogics Disk Defrag, also makes another defragger: Registry Defrag. Does it actually work? Is it all smoke and mirrors, or does using this free program result in faster clock times?

The empirical, Friday afternoon answer is: it's hard to tell. If that sounds familiar to those of you who've used other registry cleaners and their siblings, it should. It's hard to gauge if these programs are effective because once you're done using it, you'd need more... Read More »

Tags: freeware , Windows software

Power Downloader converts images to thumbs quickly

Power Downloader converts images to thumbs quickly

Recently Power Downloader was sifting through his daily e-mails when he came across a message from Francois Foto, his photographer friend from France. In the e-mail, Francois asked about Thanksgiving and what else Power had planned for the holidays, but at the end of his message he had a special request for PD. Francois was attempting to build a Web site of his photos so people could see his work, but wondered if there was a way to convert all... Read More »

Tags: Windows software

Spyware reroutes home-network plan

Spyware reroutes home-network plan

Julio knows enough about spyware to recognize it when he sees it. And he does. An afternoon of setting up his friend's wireless home network gets detoured as Julio pulls out every trick he remembers to rid his friend's PC of the offending adware.

However, splintering the Trojan is only half the battle. The other half resides in wireless network security. Will Julio remember all the tricks of making home networks secure?

Read up on it in this week's Spyware... Read More »

Tags: malware , spyware , virus , Spyware Horror Story , Trojan

CandyBar for Mac adds style to your desktop

CandyBar for Mac adds style to your desktop

Part of the reason people buy Macs is because of Apple's attention to style. Whether it's bondi blue, smooth white, glossy black, or brushed metal, Mac hardware is as much about functionality as it is the overall aesthetic. Of course, attention to aesthetics doesn't stop at Apple hardware. Mac OS X and most Mac software shares the same smooth lines and beveled edges of the hardware surrounding it. The application icons in the Dock are bright and slick, and the... Read More »

Topics: Mac Software

Tags: Leopard

Fring starts chats, Skype calls for less dough

Fring starts chats, Skype calls for less dough

Here's a twist on the all-in-one cell phone chat client--make it call your contacts too.

Fring is a free VoIP and chat client. The downloadable app harnesses your cell phone's Internet connection into phone calls and chats with buddies on Skype, Twitter, MSN Messenger, Google Talk, and ICQ. Your carrier will slap you with no accruing SMS fee, but you'd better have Wi-Fi reception or an unlimited data plan if you want to chat freely and stay in the black.

... Read More »

Tags: IM , Twitter , Skype , VoIP , Fring

Process versus Process

Process versus Process

It's hard to like the Windows Task Manager. It's clunky, makes drilling into computer's processes nigh impossible, and offers little help into what's going on. Like most native Windows tasks, though, there are freeware replacements available. Today we're looking at three of them: Process Explorer, Security Process Explorer, and Process Manager 2 Lite, all of which have recently received updates.

All three of them have a lot to offer. Process Manager provides the most features and Security Process Explorer offers the... Read More »

Tags: freeware , Windows software