Productive Convergence of Technology and Life

Tending to contribute to, encourage, or bring about an enjoyable technically enhanced life.

Top Tech Tools Collection

Posted by conducivetechnology on June 3, 2008

Diagnostic Utilities

Hitachi Drive Fitness Test:
Use this to test the integrity of you Hard Disk Drives.  Works with most but not all drives.  This file is in iso format and will need to be burnt onto a CD.  This is used by booting from the cd.

Windows Memory Diagnostic
Use this to test the integrity of your system Ram.  If you are running Windows Vista this utility is built in. Simply type in memory into the start menu, and you should see the first option will say Memory Diagnostics Tool.  If you are not running Vista or need a bootable version, download the file above and it will create a bootable CD for you.

An advanced System Information for Windows tool that gathers detailed information about your system properties and settings and displays it in an extremely comprehensible manner.  I mainly use the secrets function to find saved passwords that have been forgotten.

Ultimate Boot Cd
UBCD4Win is a bootable recovery CD that contains software used for repairing, restoring, or diagnosing almost any computer problem.

Mac Only: Do you have a shiny new flash drive in your pocket ? Or perhaps a small portable hard drive ? Now you can turn it into a Mac OS X diagnostic, repair, and maintenance tool. DasBoot allows you to take any third party boot CD and quickly create a bootable diagnostic device that contains any of your own utilities you may wish to install.

Data Recovery
This one is not free but highly recommended.  Out of all the data recovery software I have used this one is by far the most successful.  I have had success recovering files from some pretty bad drives and flash devices.  Before you spend thousands on clean room recovery try this first.  True story I used this to recover files off of my backup drive that was physically failing and in bad shape.  Note:  If your drive is not recognized by the bios then most likely this will not recognize it either.

CD/DVD Burning Utilities

Burnaware Free edition Note: The free version is no longer available after being sold
BurnAware covers all of your most common burning tasks, from burning audio CDs and video DVDs to disk images (like ISO files) and regular data discs. (Windows Only)

Mac OS X only: Free, open source application Burn lets you burn almost any kind of CD or DVD on your Mac.

Spyware & Virus Removal Software and Tools

Note:  Virus and spyware removal can be a time consuming and tedious task.  I am a professional and yet a full manual cleaning af a system can take me anywhere from 30 min to an couple hours.  Most of the utilities noted below are most effectively used on a clean system for preventive proactive protection.

Webroot Spysweeper with Antivirus
Out of all the security suites, freeware applications and online scanners.  Webroot Spysweeper by far has been the most effective in prevention and protection against malware.  It for the most part compared to other security suites is very lightweight.  It can conflict with other security suites so remove any existing security software.


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Conducive Technology-Productive Convergence of Technology and Life

Posted by conducivetechnology on May 31, 2008

Laura, my wife has always been a getting things done (GTD) Goddess.  She likes to call it obsessive-compulsive behavior, but her drive to set goals and tasks, then follow through with them is a rare trait that can be found in most successful people who are truly happy with their lives. It is no fluke that those who set goals to accomplish things are able to achieve great success and seem happier with their lives. Personally I have viewed it as a burden to set and follow time limits on accomplishing things. I have always been one to get things done up to the point I don’t feel like doing it anymore.  To not plan things out and to just live day to day.  Sure I have aspirations, wishes, wants and needs.  But those without concrete planning are just what they are and no more closer to reality.  As I plan my life and create goals to accomplish those dreams I have come across various tools, software, and technologies that have caused more work and some that have been conducive with my life allowing me to be more productive.  I have developed this blog mainly as a way of sharing with those interested the things that have made my life easier and more productive.  Most topics will focus on software, tools, and technologies that will be conducive with my life as a father, husband, and in my job role as an IT Tech.  Other topics will focus on life’s thoughts, events, and ideas.

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