Tuesday, July 27, 2010

DROPBOX: How to avoid viruses

Before, I thought there was just no way to avoid viruses at work since we constantly needed to share (send and receive files) by sharing USBs. My colleagues and I were aware that there are programs such as Winpop for sending and receiving files, but it left unanswered our need to have these shared files constantly updated as each one worked on it without having to send/receive it every time. Until we discovered Dropbox.

Dropbox is an online storage that helps you easily share files between the computers you use and also with other people. The files are stored online and on your computer. So whoever updates a shared file and does the usual saving procedure, the online file and that same file shared on each computer also automatically gets updated!

Another big advantage that we love with Dropbox is that by avoiding having to use USBs to share files, we have successfully been avoiding "sharing" viruses too! You can just imagine the savings in terms of money and time by not being infected by viruses and trojans. At work and at home, we use it even between XP/Win7 and Linux computers. Isn't it great?

Well, in case I was not able to explain it well, go to DROPBOX and find out more. The website explains it quite simply and facilitates the steps to register and set it up. It has a FREE ACCOUNT with 2GB storage, good enough, don't you think? But if you want more, you can gain more free storage by completing certain steps and inviting friends. Or, you can simply upgrade to a paid account. Try Dropbox!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

A Blogger.com Horror Story: Blogger deletes my blogs!

I'll die! No, of course not. But I'm mad!

I found out this alternative online ad network to Google's AdSense--AdBrite--and I started installing one, only one, ad zone in one of my blogs. A little later, Blogger.com sends me an email that this blog has been deleted for "malicious java script"! Hello! I do not even know java script (remember, it's unTechie here who's writing). Pretty soon, Blogger.com started deleting each one of my other blogs! This was turning out to be a horror story. And it was not the end--all of a sudden the email which is also what I use for my blogger account was suspended, deleted, put on hold, whatever! It was like a mystery man hitting me from all sides.

What would you do in these cases? I did not know. If Gmail itself did not just as suddenly show me a page (I do not remember how) allowing me to "restore" my email, I really would not have known what to do. Again, a little later after that, when I tried to login into my blogger account, only the first deleted blog remained deleted while the rest were back to normal. But obviously, someone and something were not normal here.

So I uninstalled the AdBrite ads, clicked the "Restore" button on my deleted blog and Blogger shows me a message saying I am "probably human" since I was reading that message and therefore, that my blog was probably not a "spam blog". It said that it was sorry for the "false positive" and that it was going to review my blog. Well, two days have passed and it still has not been restored nor has Blogger given me more feedback on it.

Like all horror stories, this does not end with the first scare. Naively thinking that it was probably the long name and URL that I chose for that deleted blog which made it seem like a spam blog (how's that again? Containing "malicious java script"!), I thought Blogger.com acted really bad on that one, and that AdBrite was probably innocent. So I tried installing AdBrite again, a little 1 column x 3 text links, on my blogs--all except one and the other one that was pending restoration.

The same horrific thing soon happened. Blogger.com showed on my dashboard that all these blogs were deleted (with the now-familiar "restore" button). I clicked that button on each of the affected blogs. The same message appeared for each. I went to the Gmail account I use with this Blogger account and, voila!, a message for each deleted blog was in my inbox, each saying the same thing: my blog contains "malicious java script"!

Is AdBrite doing something fishy with the codes they give for posting on the blogs? I emailed them asking this. Let's see what they will say.

Or, is it AdSense that does not like any form of competition on their blogs? After all, it is all Google's: Gmail, Blogger, and AdSense.

It is just scary how Google can just take away what you have and give you robot-generated explanations which you cannot understand while you are left at their mercy--because if Blogger itself did not provide me with those restore buttons, what could I have done? And really, now, what can I do?

Oh, blogger!

UPDATE (2 July 2010):

Here is AdBrite's answer:

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

1ShoppingCart: "One-stop solution for selling online"

Still related to the Internet Marketing Workshop by Jomar Hilario this Friday-Saturday, I just signed up for 1ShoppingCart. So what is this?

1ShoppingCart is supposed to be a one-stop solution for selling and marketing your products online. Services include autoresponders and email broadcasts both of which often come out when you search about Internet marketing.

Well, I will still find out all its features in the workshop as it is a bit too techie for me at this point.

I only signed up for the 30-day trial package which costs $3.95. You can check it out here.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Internet Marketing Workshop by Jomar Hilario

OK, this is the live hands-on Internet marketing workshop that I mentioned attending previously. It will be held on June 25-26, 2010 in Quezon City.

Jomar Hilario is endorsed by Bo Sanchez and so I am confident that this will be truly worth it.

Here's a link to Jomar's blog about it: Internet Marketing Workshop in Cubao, June 25-26, 2010

Let's see :)

Sunday, June 13, 2010

"Get an MP3 player!"

In this new saga of learning (on my own yet) of how to earn online on my super spare time (like one hour a day so that's why I could not make myself bid on the very interesting part-time online jobs at Freelancer), I signed up for a free online version of an Internet marketer's--guess what--Internet marketing course.

I was directed to the now too-familiar online sign-up form (more on this in another post) so that I could receive the three-month free e-course wherein the guru is supposed to email me tips and techniques--of course, nothing like signing up for his real course (online and in real person). Nonetheless, i signed up for it just to get a taste of what it's all about.

Well, one of the things he has emailed me about is to go get an MP3 player (don't worry, this link is to Wikipedia, not an advertisement) and download all of the free audio marketing interviews available at HardToFindSeminars.com. Purpose? To get as much from the minds of successful marketers. Have I done it? You guessed it, no.

I'm listening to one right now straight from the web page: it's an interview of Bob Bly, a well-known copywriter. It is very interesting. Go to the website, scroll down a bit, and look for the link entitled "31 Free Copywriting Interviews". Scroll down until you reach the end of the introduction (which you can opt to just listen to, it's part of the audio), look for the play button and click it. If you want to download it, look to the right of the page where it says "download mp3". Look at the image below:

If you don't mind having your email receiving an outpour from this site, I suggest that you don't sign up for anything, not even for the free CD.

By the way, my "guru" recommended that I get an iPod and not just an mp3 player. He has a 160gb iPod. Cheers :)

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Giveaway of the Day: FREE licensed software

You like this? It's from the website Giveaway of the Day which I personally have been checking daily for about two years now.

It offers for free licensed software which ordinarily is for sale. If you like what they offer on their home page, just scroll down a bit and you'll see the "Proceed to the download page". Click it. Before you actually download the software, you probably will want to check how useful (or useless) other users have found it. Scroll down a bit further and you'll find the comments section where you can also ask questions.

Making AdSense Work (or how to make sense of AdSense)

As you can guess, I am focused right now on how to earn from blogging. The ads you see all over here are part of my experiment to see which ads sell more and which do not.

I am also trying to learn from articles here in the web on Internet marketing and how to increase traffic in this site. As I mentioned in a previous post, I am confirmed to attend a workshop on Internet marketing but just the same, I like reading what I can get my hands on in the web.

Here is one site that I stumbled upon and I'm reading its free e-book on how to earn from AdSense.

Make Money with Google AdSense
I just posted a new link to a multimedia package that you can download for free. Go to my WINDOWS page or click here.

This is not an advertisement. I personally use the program. Cheers!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

How an Internet Newbie Earned More than $3000 in 24 Hours

As you can see, I'm trying out this traffic creator site, LeadsLeap. At the same time, the article does captivate one's attention. Read on...

Monetize: AdSense + Chitika

How else can you monetize your blog or website aside from Google's AdSense? Chitika.

I have been trying to read up on Internet marketing and earning money online and I came across this. With only some days of surfing the web on these areas, it can be clearly seen that there are many scams out there. Mainly from soliciting membership fees from those who are eager enough (or desperate enough?) to earn money online that they are willing to pay for it. Well, Chitika seems real enough, if you would believe this among many other testimonials.

Of course, they say nothing is free and no guts no glory, but I personally would rather see for myself where my money will go.

I will be attending an Internet marketing workshop in a real venue, in a real location, and with real, live speakers who have been around for some time and whose reputation have solidly grown. Very untechie, indeed.

Will let you know what happens. Cheers!

Download Chitika's BlogBash E-book on how to optimize blogs

Get free eBook Now!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

What's wrong with Google's AdSense?

The other day I just expressed my preference for Blogger. But since Blogger is Google's and Google's AdSense is an expected way of monetizing your blog at Blogger, today I have to say that Google's forums are lousy.

I have been trying since yesterday to add and/or modify the AdSense ads in my different blogs and every time I click the save button, this error message comes out: "Please correct errors on this form" and "An internal error occurred. Please try again."

Even for non-techies like us the window for configuring AdSense is really quite simple and so I tried "correcting" whatever else could possibly be corrected. I also, as it said, "tried again" many times on the different blogs. I even closed the browser, tried different browsers (Firefox and Chrome), and restarted the laptop. Nada.

I checked out Google's AdSense forum and discovered that during these days, there have actually been quite a number of people with the same problem. Worse, Google does not seem to offer any solution. In the forum I only see users complaining and a few suggesting solutions. I understand that Google's a huge company, but since it's the millions of little people like us who patronize it and make it profitable, I would expect there would be some kind of forum expert or administrator who would try providing answers. But it seems that is not to be expected. So if any of you knows how to get around this, I would really be thankful and dedicate a post to it.

Let me not let this drag on and instead, switch to a different but still related topic. The best and most interactive forum I have found so far--and also by my judgement, the friendliest to non-techies and newbies--is the Ubuntu Forum. I just love it. You can actually count on both administrators and fellow users. And impressively, they help for the sake of helping. Cheers!

On Monday, I realized that it was the AdSense widget that was not working. I was going about posting ads the long way, that is, logging into my AdSense account and creating and editing my ads units there and then copying the code and pasting it into this blog (go to your blog's Dashboard>Layout>Add a Gadget).

I tried the Adsense widgets again today and now it is working. Whatever happened the past days continues to be a mystery.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

From Blogger to Wordpress and Back Again (or How to Import from Wordpress to Blogger)

Frankly, I prefer Blogger to Wordpress.

Perhaps it is because I began from zero-blogging knowledge with Blogger. Sometime last year though I exported my blogs from Blogger to Wordpress because I was just tired of the same old boring Blogger templates. I am a visual person and this mattered to me.

I enjoyed choosing among Wordpress' more varied themes and templates. Liked too its widgets, especially the Blog Stats. But sadly, because of not knowing how to use it more (and later on the lack of interest to learn it), I found Wordpress more and more unwieldy. And then Blogger came out with all these new templates--I just had to switch back to my first love!

Well, I also have to add that knowing a bit more about how Google AdSense works sealed it for me :)

So, it took me several attempts to import in Blogger what I had exported from Wordpress and I kept being told by Blogger that it was having problems doing so. Fortunately, light dawned on me and so I did a classical google search: "importing Wordpress to Blogger".

With what I found, it turned out to be so easy! Follow these steps:

1. Go to your Wordpress blog and log in. Click on My Dashboard, scroll down to Tools and click Export.
2. Follow the instructions on that page. When you finish, you should have been able to download a document ("xml" type) into your computer (check where you saved the download).
3. Now this is THE KEY PART: Go to this site Wordpress2Blogger and proceed right away to STEP NO. 6.

Good luck and enjoy going back to Blogger too!

Monday, May 31, 2010

Dropbox in LinuxMint 9

Ever since I discovered Dropbox, it has been my favorite file sharing program, especially since I can use it in both Windows and Linux.

I was using it without any problem in LinuxMint 8 but it has not been easy with 9. First, I was happy to see it included among the programs in Software Manager so I tried to install it from there. Nada. I mean, after installation, Dropbox appeared in the Menu list under Internet but each time I would click it, a small window opens saying it's installing Dropbox but it never actually finishes. The window just disappears.

Next I went to the Dropbox site itself and downloaded it from there directly. Installed it and the installation window said it installed. I clicked on the icon and a downloading window appeared. It finished downloading but then nothing significant happened after. I still couldn't open Dropbox.

This time I tried to be smarter and checked the forums and I quote below the SOLUTION I found. It also explains it much better and in a shorter way.
The Mint version of Dropbox, despite the high scores in the community website, is buggy and not worth keeping since it constantly goes through this install loop everytime you reboot your computer. I encountered this annoyance in Helena and it wasn't fixed in Isadora. I suggest you completely remove it, delete the hidden configuration files/folders and download/install the .deb installer from the official Dropbox site itself.


Note what Pilosopong Tasyo (it's his reply up there) says about completely removing configuration files/folders. You can do this by seeing them in the first place. I mean you won't see them unless you open your home folder, click Edit, click Preferences, then click the phrase that says show hidden files or something similar.

If you wish, you can check out the entire exchange of ideas here: http://forums.linuxmint.com/viewtopic.php?f=47&t=48675&p=280851&hilit=dropbox#p280851

Enjoy Dropbox!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Windows feel in Linux

Linux is not Windows, that is what we often hear from Linux users. And rightly so. For newbies and non-techies like me who are still in the process of switching from Windows, however, continuing to have some windows-feel in linux does make the transition a bit more comfortable and not so alien.

So I discovered this page from Gizmo's freeware website called Tips and Tricks for Ubuntu after Installation. It is actually meant for Ubuntu 10.04 users but it is applicable to earlier Ubuntu versions (based on the replies posted). It is also applicable to LinuxMint, many of it at least, since LinuxMint is based on Ubuntu.

Personally, I liked the tip on how to have the Windows 7 aero snap functionality for open windows. I find it very useful in Windows 7 and so I wanted it too for my LinuxMint. Well, it works :)

Check it out yourself!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Linux Mint 9 (Isadora): Part 2

As I've said, I installed the 64-bit version from the Live DVD. I did everything I learned from previous experiences and so was expecting a great time using Isadora. It wasn't so. For some reason I really don't know, and which I was too lazy to post in the forum, my laptop just kept hanging every few seconds, it was really annoying.

So I reinstalled it, still side by side with win7, and the next thing that bugged me was that the wireless connection would not work even after I had successfully installed Isadora and installed the hardware driver for the wireless: at first, I chose the one that was made by linux, not the proprietary one.

To cut my always long story short, I plugged the LAN cable, downloaded all the upgrades indicated, and switched the wireless driver to the proprietary one. Now, it's working.

The additional programs I've installed so far because they did not come with the Live DVD: Stellarium (real time planetary program), Klamav (anti-virus), Imagination (slideshow maker), Mint Dropbox (great file sharing).

It's working ok for now. I really do hope I last long with Linux Mint 9 :)

P.S. By the way, if you want a serious review of Linux Mint 9, click this: http://cristalinux.blogspot.com/2010/05/review-linux-mint-9-isadora.html

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Linux Mint 9 Isadora

JUST INSTALLED LINUX MINT 9 (64bit) and it's working fine so far. As I've begun, I continue to dual boot it with win7.

This is my desktop. I'll play with the wallpapers and appearance later on after I finish installing other programs I need. By the way, this version has a back up tool that's supposed to back up even programs already installed so that in the next upgrade, they won't have to be searched for and re-installed once more :)

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Dell Inspiron 1427: Dual Booting with Windows 7 and Linux Mint Helena

Yes, my saga continues.

From Ubuntu Studio 32-bit, I shifted to the 64-bit. Again, I had to check forums and post questions to find out if my unit was 32 or 64 bit-something very obvious to many but not to this one.

Anyway, I didn't quite like Ubuntu Studio. I found it a bit slow though someone in the forum said it kind of starts like that until the system "gets used to it". Impatient me again urged me to go back to Linux Mint 8 (Helena), 64-bit. It's probably just the way I used it, or because some of the programs weren't fully ready yet for 64-bit, but I found it hanging several times. I mean this is a new unit after all and the specs are more than the recommended of Mint. Besides, Mint's blog does have some sort of warning that says its 32-bit version is more stable than the 64-bit one.

So I installed the 32-bit. Being 32-bit, it could detect only 3 of 4gb memory, just like Microsoft Windows 32-bit. But, man, I paid for that extra 2gb memory so I wanted it utilized. Found out that there's such a thing as PAE. So I followed the instructions and now Mint detects and uses my 4gb memory!

So why do I dual boot Mint with Windows 7? Because I'm still finding out and learning the multimedia softwares that linux has to offer. In the meantime, I can fall back on those that i know which are Windows-based. Basic ones, of course, but very useful for work and home (Windows Live moviemake, DVD flick, etc).

Well, so far so good!

P.S. There's a website for linux applications that serve as alternatives to Windows ones. Click here.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Dell Inspiron 1427 and Ubuntu

So I finally had the Dell Inspiron 1427 unit I originally purchased but with a factory defect exchanged with another one that hopefully will not have anymore defects since the travel from my place to the computer store is quite a distance.

Maybe because I'm getting a bit more used to it now, and without discovering any defect so far, that I'm appreciating this laptop more. So as soon as I arrived home, I set about changing the OS to Ubuntu Studio 9.10. I had downloaded the image and burned it on a DVD.

Here's where my non-techiness came in. I didn't think of checking my internet connection (there was none) and just wanted to get the installation done and over. But of course, almost halfway through the installation, the installer says "failed to install software packages".

I was so impatient that I aborted installation, popped in instead a copy of Linux Mint Helena's live CD. It was then I noticed that the laptop wasn't getting the wireless signal for the internet connected via router. Worse, Linux Mint kept on hanging.

Alright, so restarted again, replaced Linux Mint with Ubuntu 9.10 and it installed. But still the wireless network wasn't getting detected. Oh no, not another factory defect, I thought. But back in the store, I remember that we checked it and it worked. So there must be something else.

This was how I was until any free time I could get the next day: checking out help for internet and networking. Nothing. Checked out troubleshooting both on the Ubuntu help and Dell's (using a desktop). Nada.

What could be wrong??? I couldn't figure it out and I was so tempted to reinstall Vista Basic since I had the reinstallation DVD. I didn't in the end because I couldn't take going back to Vista and basic at that.

And then it occurred to me to reinstall Ubuntu 9.10 with the laptop connected to the router with a LAN cable. Online, installation was able to complete with all the necessary download and with it detect the need for drivers for the NVIDIA graphic card and the wireless network. Downloaded drivers. Restarted. Voila, wireless network now working.

Did I remember to say I am so un-techie? :)

These are not good pictures but they give you an idea of the Dell Inspiron i bought:


Thursday, February 4, 2010

My new Dell Inspiron 1427

I finally was able to purchase last Sunday a laptop for my personal and other-work use, taking advantage of two loans that are going to be deducted from my salary.

Dell Inspiron 1427 (see picture below which is from another site; I'll post mine in an update) was my choice after searching the websites of local computer shops, calling them up, and even calling up the different branches of the same shop/company--I discovered that they can offer very different discounts and perks!

As I shortlisted my choices I also found it useful to search forums that talked about the brands and models I was considering. For instance, I was really eyeing the MSI EX460x-T66 and the ASUS K4oIN-VX128 because they both fit my budget and had 512 mb of dedicated video memory. I was getting more and more undecided, even after having checked out both models in the stores, and so it was a great relief to find out that there were others who found it just as stressful!

Anyway, I ended up with the Dell because aside from budget (principal consideration), I was looking for 512 mb of dedicated video memory plus a firewire port. The combination of these three were what really made me search and search. The Dell Inspiron 1427 has these.

I can't say much about its looks though. It's squarish and a bit too plasticky to the touch for my taste. But as I had to choose, I chose the specs over the looks. (Tomorrow I'm bringing it back to the store for a change of unit since the external part of the optical drive, the part with the button, is loose.) I just hope it will last me more than the two years it'll take me to pay for it!

For those interested, here are the specs:

Dell Inspiron 1427
  • Intel Core 2 Duo T6500 2.1 GH
  • 2GB Memory (I had 2gb more added)
  • 320GB Hard Drive
  • 14.1" WXGA TL
  • nVidia 9300M GS 512MB
  • Bluetooth
  • DW1397 Wireless LAN
  • Vista Basic (I'll be changing this to Ubuntu)
  • 2.0MP Camera
  • Ethernet 10/100 LAN
  • Firewire port
  • Card reader
  • 4 USB ports