Favorite apps right now
I am always talking about the newest and greatest applications that I have found lately and thought it was time I make a list of them as of today. Hope you guys enjoy this list and stay tuned for more discoveries.
1. Dropbox for backup and synchronization between multiple computers
2. Foxmarks plugin for Firefox to sync bookmarks and passwords
3. TrueCrypt for data encryption
4. PortableApps to get around those pesky IT admin limitations
5. GnuPG an open source replacement to PGP
6. FireGPG plugin for Firefox to use GnuPG with Gmail
Dropbox: Dropbox is great for securely backing up our files and sharing them between multiple computers and users with different OS's. I have found this to be a exceptional solution for backing up my family members files without them even knowing how it works. For example remapping the "My Documents" to their "My Dropbox" folder, you just need to move the "My Dropbox" folder to somewhere outside of "My Documents" I personally moved it one folder back.
From: C:\Documents and Settings\(USERNAME)\My Documents\My Dropbox
To: C:\Documents and Settings\(USERNAME)\My Dropbox
To accomplish this right click on your Dropbox icon is the systray and click on "Preferences" and then your see "Dropbox Location" and a button under it called "Move". Click it and change the path to the above "From:" as well to the above "To:". Once that is done next step is remapping your "My Documents". To do this right click on your "My Documents" either in your Start menu or on your desktop. Look at the "Target" tab and then midway down and the "Target:" path and change that from the above "From:" to the above "To:". Pretty easy ya, well there is only one catch (It's there always a catch!?), currently there is a 2 Gb limit on your Dropbox account but supposedly as soon as Dropbox leaves it's Beta stage it will be increasing it's space to a more competive size.
Foxmarks: I used to use Chipmarks but that ended as soon as Firefox verson 3 came out. Good riddance anyways, there was always something going wrong with it but then Foxmarks came out and what a pleasant surprise! Foxmarks does not replace your bookmarks piece of Firefox like Chipmarks did but rather the location of where Firefox backs up your bookmarks. I think that this system is much more efficient and on top of backing up your bookmarks, Foxmarks also can securely backup your passwords as well. This system of backing up your passwords uses AES 256-bit encryption and only you have access to it. Basically you are creating a password container on Foxmarks servers and if you don’t know the password good luck getting into it.
TrueCrypt: I use TrueCrypt for all my data encryption needs! My recommendation is to never have a flashdrive or anything on your computer that can compromise you, not encrypted. It is a fairly easy program to use but again there is another limitation you need to be aware of. You currently have to be an administrator or have an administrator install TrueCrypt on your computer to install the On-The-Fly Encryption driver to be able to use TrueCrypt.
PortableApps: Lets say that you are working in a company that only uses Internet Explorer but really like using Firefox. Lets say you like chatting with Skype but the company doesn't allow you to install any apps on your PC. Well your in luck because now you can run these and many more apps from your flash drive without having to install them on the computer. If you are really paranoid and use TrueCrypt to encrypt your flash drive, then you can use PortableApps within your encrypted flash drive. Makes for a very secure and portable solution that is all free open source.
GnuPG: If you know what PGP is then all that needs to be said is that GnuPG or GPG for short is an open source replacement to PGP. If you don't know what PGP is then in a nut shell, it is an easy way of encrypting emails or data using a cryptography system which uses a private and public keys. The GPG system is completely free and the PGP system you have to pay a subscription for the system and the keys. Got to love open source I think!
FireGPG: This is a plugin for Firefox that allows you to use GnuPG with Gmail. So basically you now get to encrypt your Gmail messages between you and your friends or at the least when you email yourself. So when you do email yourself that login username and password to some account, it is no longer sitting in your Gmail account unencrypted and in plaintext.