Cool Tool: Taskbar Shuffle

OK folks, here is a nifty tool for you.  It’s called Taskbar Shuffle, and if you are running Windows this is a handy little item.  Just like the name implies, you can take items that are in the Windows taskbar and shuffle or move them around.  This is pretty cool in many ways, but I know from my own use, it can be nice to organize items together that go together or in some way that makes more sense that just the way they were opened, especially if you have lots and lots of windows open like I often do.  It’s easy to use too, just drag ’em around to wherever you want them, it’s that easy.  Best of all, like many of the best pieces of software that I have come across, it’s totally free so go check it out now.  Go ahead, RFN!

Here is the URL:

While you are at it, check out all of the Cool Tools we have in the Cool Tools section, as well as everything in the Library, there’s lots of good stuff in there …

**Note: Don’t forget that the author of Taskbar Shuffle, just like many others out there including Solarum here, gives away the product for free despite all of the personal time invested in bringing you that product.  If you find something that you really like and find useful, think about the last time you paid for an app the didn’t live up to your expectations and make a donation to the little guy(s) and gal(s) out there writing the good stuff for free.

Cool Tools – Keep Windows Humming

We’ve got some big ol’ updates for the Cool Tools section.  The folks at Piriform have been cranking out some cool stuff, and they just keep making them better and better.  Best of all they are all free.  They have several tools that help keep Windows happy, a system cleaning and fixing tool, a defrag tool and a system information too.  Check out a brief description of each one below, and be sure to follow the links to the sites for each tool to get all the details.  Be sure to check all of the Cool Tools that we have posted as well as all the good articles in the Library.

Cool tools from Piriform:

  • CCleaner – This is a great tool for finding files that can be safely removed in order free up space on your hard drive.  It also has a great registry cleaner, a tool for managing program startup when your machine starts, an interface to uninstalling software and more.  This is a great system maintenance tool.
  • Defraggler – This tool is one of, if not the best defrag tool for Windows.  This tool is not the fastest, but that’s OK because it’s very thorough.  It takes time to do it right, and do it right it does from my experience.
  • Speccy – I superb system info tool.  No install necessary, just run and collect data.

In all, these free tools rival the commercial alternatives and any tech should add them to his or her kit.  Check ’em out.

Free System Administration Tools

It’s not every day that you come across such a fine collection of tools that someone has generously created and put forth for the world.  One of my agents in the field sent this my way and so I feel compelled to share with you, my loyal readers.  This is a set of system administration tools, written in PERL, and that been offered up for free by the author simply out of the goodness that swells within his and her heart.  With tools like ‘turbo’, ‘cdrewind’, and ‘mkzombie’ just to name a few, how can you NOT have this collection in your kit?  Check it out, and see the goodness for yourself!

Splunk is awesome, get it NOW!

I found a cool tool, and that doesn’t even do it justice, I found a freakin’ awesome tool for monitoring whats going on with your servers and server logs.  It’s called Splunk, and it’s been around a while (a couple years at least, maybe more), but I just recently got the chance to check it out.

Wow.  Now, remember, I don’t do ANY paid reviews on this site.  So this is not me promoting something because I got a check for it.  This is me promoting something because of the principles of what I started this site for.  I found something totally cool, useful, well worth the time and money to invest in it and I want to tell all my readers about it.  That being said, just in case someone from Splunk is reading this right now and would like to send me a check, or a free license for the good promotion, I am all for it just drop me a line! 🙂

Anyway, this software can run on Windows, Linux, UNIX, you name it.  It accepts syslog input, flat file log parsing, interfaces with WMI and more.  So far, it knows what to do with everything I throw at it.  All that log data is chopped up and stored in a database so you can easily get meaningful information back out.  Probably the best feature of this whole darn thing is the interface.  Splunk has a CLI which rocks, but the web interface is one of the best I have ever seen.  Very slick, very nice, very easy to navigate, very easy to sort and search, truly amazing.  I have used other systems similar in theory (I won’t name names), and they didn’t do a half bad job at collecting the data, but it was getting anything useful out of it later that was the tough part.  Plus their appliance was much, much more expensive.

Now, do you want to know the best part?  Wait for it …. yep, it’s free!  No, really, it’s true.  They have a freely available and usable version of the software that 100% works.  The catch is that some advanced features are not enabled, and you are limited to 500MB of log data per day.  That’s great for most small shops, and to buy the Enterprise license for more features and data logging capacity, the pricing is not near as bad as the others I have seen.  Top that off with this being a better product and it’s like win, win … win … win … or something.

Go check it out, you’ll thank me if you haven’t done so already.  It’s free and installs in seconds, it’s so easy to setup you’ll laugh when you are done.  Go … now … go!  Enjoy!