This week, in our Linux Page (in Spanish), we posted a brief tutorial about installing XBMC on Ubuntu 8.10. As you certainly know, XBCM is a complete Media Center based on Ubuntu. This program is multiplatform (Linux, Windows, OS X and also XBOX – not officially supported-) and, in our opinion, is the most efficient and complete open source media center you can find today on the Internet. Moreover, XBMC has developed a special version that could be installed on a USB Key on a Live CD to freely test the application before installing on your PC. The post is brief but contains all the complete instructions to quickly install XBMC without problems. Please, be sure to digit sudo apt-get update in Terminal after you install the new repositories. Recommended!!
I strongly believe that all you know OpenDNS yet. But for the few who still do not know this powerful free online tool we have posted a brief review in our Freeware Page. OpenDNS is very easy to configure and could be very useful to bypass all the restrictions that some ISP apply in certain countries. In Ubuntu 8.04, for example you have just to substitute your ISP default DNS with OpenDNS servers (126.96.36.199 and 188.8.131.52) in System – Administration – Network or to read the instruction contained on the proper OpenDNS page if you prefer to use the Terminal. For Windows and Apple users, we recommend to follow the official guide for XP, Vista and OSX. Moreover, if you decide to open a free account with OpenDNS, you will able to deeply examine or better manage all your network web traffic in just few clicks. Recommended!
Today, in our Linux Page (in Spanish) we added a brief post about XBMC, the best open source (GPL), free entertainment hub you can find on internet. XBMC is really easy to install (for Linux users, especially in Ubuntu) and its features are very intuitive and simple to configure. Moreover the graphics themes are very attractive and it is able to manage many multimedia formats, “playlists, audio visualizations, slideshow and weather forecast functions”. It is also possible to add many interesting third-party plugins that you can find through a simple google query (XBMC plugin). Last, but not least, XBMC is a multiplatform software, in fact the download page contains four different versions for Windows, XBox, Linux and MAC OSX. When we compared XBMC to the Windows Media Center we did not notice any loss in this open-source media center and, honestly, we were positively impressed by all the XBMC featured we tested. Recommended!
This week, in our Freeware Page we have posted a brief review about Pictomio a very good program for “3D accelerated browsing of your photo and video”. Pictomio is more advanced than many similar software and its graphic appearance is very attractive. Pictomio has a full range of commands which allow you to easily organize and manage your photographs collections in at just few clicks. I spent, more or less, one hour to understand all (I suppose) the different features supported by this freeware and, at the end, I can say that my experience has been more than positive. What negatively surprised me is that Pictomio does not allow you to upload your images and videos to ftp servers or websites like Flickr .com. To sum up, Pictomio is something you have certainly to try because in the future with more social features it could become a benchmark for photo and video manager category. Interesting!
Today, in our Freeware Page we have posted a short but (effective) review about WinFlip: a tiny program which allows you to have the same Vista graphical interface for active windows. Personally I do not believe thatWinFlip will change your way of working with XP but it could represent a good graphical solution for all that people who want to upgrade just some XP functions without changing their OS at the moment. Last but not least, since last December, WinFlip has been included into the Vista Transformation Pack the famous compilation of programs which allows to full enjoy the main Vista graphical effects on your XP. Anyway, I believe that the installation of the complete Vista Transformation Pack could be negative (in terms of slower performances) for many computer using XP.
This week we have reviewed a useful multiplatform (Windows, Linux and OS X) software dedicated to all the people who desire read their favorite web-sites also when disconnected from the web. HTTrack is a very powerful program which contains easy (not always unfortunately) features to download complete websites and navigate them when outline. In our Freeware Page you can find a brief but incisive review about this program. Moreover for the Linux geeks, we inserted some tips (how to install and useful links) about HTTrack in our Linux Page. Sometimes the use of HTTrack could be a little difficult but after some experiments you will be able to manage it without problems. Enjoy it!
Today, in our Linux Page (in Spanish) we have post a review about Qtpfsgui: a very powerful program to create HDR images. Qtpfsgui supports the following HDR formats: OpenEXR, Radiance RGBE, Tiff (16bit, 32bit and LogLuvand), Raw image and PFS native. Obviously also LDR extensions are well managed: JPEG, PNG, PPM, PBM, and TIFF(8 bit). Using this program you can easily create terrific looking HDR files from a set of images (formats: JPEG, TIFF 8bit and 16bit, RAW) of the same scene taken at different exposure setting. The program is very easy to use and after just few minutes you learn how to use it properly. Last but not least, the Qtpfsgui website has a link to useful documentation in French and a (unfortunately missing) link for Ubuntu users.