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Windows Software Reviews.

USB Network Gate Review - Share USB Drives Remotely
USB Network Gate is a professional application that facilitates server and client components for sharing and accessing USB devices over LAN, WAN and Internet, in order to perform file operations on the remote storage drives as if they're actually plugged into your computer. For example, you can copy important files from a friend's external hard drive instead of going through the trouble of uploading data online just to be able to download it, which is ideal when talking about large amounts of information. The beauty of this tool is that any two or more machines can be linked together through the public IP address, host name (for LAN) and a preferred port. It requires minimal configuration, making it accessible for casual users who prefer simplicity over customization. License type, setup, and interface The trial version can be tested for 14 days, after which you can either uninstall the product or purchase the full package for $95.88 / €86.38 (ex...

Windows Update MiniTool Review: Take Control of Windows Updates and Install, Uninstall, or Hide Them
How come there’s never a right time to install Windows updates? You keep putting them on hold for various reasons. Inevitably, when automatic updates occur, you end up exercising your patience until they are fully configured. Windows Update MiniTool is a nifty program that offers you control of Microsoft’s Windows updates by allowing you to check for, download, install, uninstall, schedule, and hide updates using quick and effortless actions.  The application is compatible with Windows XP, Vista, 7,

ESET NOD32 Antivirus 9 Review - Close, but No Cigar
ESET NOD32 Antivirus just got updated to version 9 a couple of days ago. Since we can't contain our excitement any longer, we're just going to dive into the application to explore the new and improved features. Developed to protect computers from all popular types of malware, this program features preset and custom scan profiles, advanced heuristics and configuration settings, web access, email client and anti-phishing protection, along with extra security tools. What's new As in the previous edition, you can enable or disable PUP (potentially unwanted programs) detection during setup. Installation is faster than before and an initial scan is auto-triggered 20 minutes after setup completion or reboot. The interface got redesigned. The developer keeps the neatly organized structure that it has already familiarized us with, while trying to make ESET NOD32 Antivirus friendlier than before. We think it succeeded. Thi...

SendTo-Convert Review: Convert Photos Right from Your Context Menu
Converting images to various file formats is supposed to be a simple-to-handle process. However, not all the programs available on the market seem to take this task seriously and they simplify the practice to a few clicks. SendTo-Convert changes the rules and allows you to convert photos from your right-click menu without other additional tweaks. The application is delivered in a lightweight and free package. It is compatible with Windows XP, Vista, 7, and

WHDownloader Review - Selectively Download Windows 10 Updates
Updating Windows with the latest hotfixes and security patches is (or should be) the first step when reinstalling the operating system. According to Microsoft, it's such an important part of the OS that it made it unavoidable in Windows 10. However, not all updates are mandatory. Instead of running Windows Update, you can resort to WHDownloader to get a clearer idea of all downloads available online, as well as get only the ones you're interested in after thorough documentation. Formerly known as Windows Hotfix Downloader, this tool is compatible with Windows 10, 8.1, and 7, both 32-bit and 64-bit architecture types. Apart from the fact that it lists general updates, hotfixes, baseline, security and optional updates, it also provides the online source for reading more details about specific updates on Microsoft's KB Articles. Portable tool for creating update backups The application's not wrapped in a setup package, so you can copy the downloade...



Mac Software Reviews.

Todoist Review - Cross-Platform Task Management Solution
Todoist delivers a task management system that can be reached from anywhere, including the browser, while also sporting clients both for desktop and mobile platforms. Organization is probably the best ally you have when facing the pile of things that need to get done every day. Regardless of whether you have to deal with a work or a personal project, establishing precise tasks, due dates, and setting up reminders will keep you out of a lot of trouble. Todoist proposes a streamlined environment where you get to create multiple projects, keep track of upcoming tasks, or assign them to other users without wasting too much time. Since Todoist relies on a web platform, at least on the desktop side, the clients preserve the same interface design. On the other hand, the project also features companion applications for iOS and Android, extensions for all major browsers (Safari, Firefox, or...

Camera Guard Pro Review - Block Unattended Access to Your Camera and Microphone
iMacs and MacBooks come with a built-in camera and microphone that might end up being a serious security risk if they fall into the wrong hands. Camera Guard Pro helps you take a proactive approach by automatically blocking all processes that try to use the devices. The Apple-vetted operating system has not been left out by malware developers, even though the amount of malicious software created for the Mac is considerably lower when compared to other platforms. Most recently, after infecting a Mac, the Backdoor.MAC.Eleanor malware installed a backdoor that granted full access to the machine to a third party, and that included the webcam device. Naturally, this raises serious concerns over one's privacy. By default, OS X comes with safety measures in place that automatically activate the camera LED whenever an app operates the webcam. Still, the camera chip can be reprogrammed to disable this f...

Paste Review - Clipboard Manager Focused on Improving Productivity
The copy and paste feature is an intrinsic part of any operating system, but the one-item-at-a-time approach might seem too time-consuming to users who juggle with a lot of the same assets on a daily basis. Paste aims to reduce the number of repetitive actions by transforming the clipboard history into an unlimited resource. Like any other clipboard manager, once launched, Paste starts recording everything you put on your clipboard and makes the database navigable and searchable. What makes the Paste application stand out are the design choices and the simple control: a separate card is created for each clipping, and you get to browse through them via a large panel placed in the bottom area of your screen. The Paste utility can deal with text content, images, links, files, or folders, but keep in mind that it will only store references so that it won’t take up too much storage space. The Paste cards...

Memory Clean 2 Review - Free Up Unnecessarily Blocked Memory
Mac OS X comes with a built-in memory management system and helps you analyze the RAM usage via the Activity Monitor. Memory Clean 2 makes the statistical information more easily accessible and helps you take control of the optimization process. Random-access memory (RAM) is a crucial part of any operating system, and the lack of it or its poor management can take a serious toll on your Mac’s overall performance. As a result, making sure that the memory is not needlessly blocked can improve the system’s responsiveness. However, the use of memory cleaners is put under question especially when Mac OS X is concerned, considering that the operating system already comes with an above-average memory management system that will automatically allocate the necessary resources to the apps in need. Memory cleaner that shifts the control over to the user Even though this is generally the...

Grammarly Review - Improve the Quality of Your Writing
The Grammarly online platform features, among other writing resources, an editor that automatically scans your text for spelling errors or common grammatical mistakes and suggests various language improvements. The Grammarly desktop client enables you to access this editor outside the browser. Most text processors include spell-checking capabilities while some advanced word processing solutions can also keep a lookout for grammatical mistakes. Nevertheless, highlighting repetitive words, offering synonyms suitable to the context, or pointing out sentences that lack clarity is out of the question. Grammarly is an online solution designed to filter your writing through a text editor that can recognize around 250 types of language errors that range from spelling and grammar to punctuation. ...



PC Games Reviews.

Tales of Berseria Review (PS4)
The latest game in the Tales series is an emotional roller coaster for both veterans and newcomers to the franchise. Developer Bandai Namco reversed the traditional formula that made the Tales games so popular among JRPG fans and provided players with a new premise. Unlike previous Tales titles where characters are driven by the need to save the world, in Tales of Berseria the protagonist murders everyone and everything that stays between her and the object of her quest: revenge. Tales of Berseria proves that playing evil characters can be just as rewarding as playing good protagonists. In fact, the change in attitude as well as the polishing of the combat mechanics make this the best title in the Tales series. More importantly, anyone can play Tales of Berseria regardless if they've played or not a previous game in the same series. However, you plan on finishing the latest Tales game, you'll have to really free your agenda and prepare for an epic ride, since you'...

Watch Dogs 2 Review (PC)
The sequel to Ubisoft's Watch Dogs is pretty much a different game than the original. Aside from a couple of game aspects that have been introduced in the first title, Watch Dogs 2 brings in a completely different formula, in an attempt to redeem the franchise in the eyes of its fans. However, Watch Dogs 2's recipe is in no way original, on the contrary. There's no argue that Ubisoft's game borrows a lot from Grand Theft Auto gameplay mechanics, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. The French company wanted to make sure Watch Dogs 2 will be well received by fans and media alike, so it came up with a “to-do list” that will help it achieve that. Watch Dogs 2 introduces a new protagonist, so if you didn't finish Aidan Pearce's saga from the original game, you won't miss anything since the two games are not related story-wise. Marcus Holloway is a jack-of-all-trades hacker, member of a group of misfits called DeadSec. If there are things that Ubisoft improved over ...

Ori and the Blind Forest: Definitive Edition Review (PC)
Ori and the Blind Forest: Definitive Edition makes some good tweaks to an already solid video game, with most of the additions clearly based on the feedback that the player community has offered since the title was first delivered on the Xbox One. The platformer mechanics are not tweaked in any significant ways, but the presence of the new Easy difficulty means that the game is more accessible than it ever was, which is a great thing given the subtle plot and the great graphics that it offers. There are still moments when the difficulty ramps up a little too fast, and it's hard to balance the need to create a new save point with the fact that energy might be required for progress in a coming section, but the Definitive Edition for Ori and the Blind Forest is a great way to experience the game for those who have only heard about it from friends until now. The title is developed by Moon Studios and is published by Microsoft, with the game offered on the Xbox One hom...

The Banner Saga 2 Review (PC)
The Banner Saga 2 is a game about loss, desperate last stands, impressive victories against the odds and, above all, the impossible task of trying to save as many lifes as possible in the face of an almost impossible enemy force. The Dredge have not been slowed down, and the alliance between the Varl and the humans is under new strain, but there's hope still for this world as new leaders learn how to distribute limited resources and when to enter battles to keep their followers alive. There's no final victory over evil to be secured in The Banner Saga 2, but the game offers a story that shows how powerful hope can be and has a set of core mechanics that allow the player to show his tactical skills in a variety of interesting situations. The game is created by Stoic Games and published by Versus Evil, with the game currently offered on the PC and set to arrive later on the PlayStation 4 from Sony and the Xbox One from Microsoft. Story The Banner ...

Ratchet & Clank Review (Playstation 4)
Ratchet & Clank is a title that exists because Sony Interactive Entertainment and its partners decided to invest in a movie based on the video game franchise and then discovered that the coming entertainment product would benefit from the existence of a video game tie-in. The events of the big-screen adventure are based on the first title in the franchise and benefit from voice work from a range of Hollywood stars, including Paul Giamatti, John Goodman, Rosario Dawson, and Sylvester Stallone. The new Ratchet & Clank video game is linked to the movie regarding narrative, but it takes the core mechanics and the environments of the PlayStation 2 title and updates them to appeal to modern players. There's a lot of fun gameplay in the new Ratchet & Clank, but the game really shines in the graphics department, offering some beautifully animated cutscenes and a world that's a pleasure to explore. The almost remake concept works well, and the title will appeal both to th...




Latest News.

Latest Black Lab Linux Weekly Build Optimizes Swap File Management for SSD
Black Lab Software CEO Robert J. Dohnert informed Softpedia today about the immediate availability of a new Weekly build of the Ubuntu-based Black Lab Linux operating system. Black Lab Linux Weekly Build 255 is here two weeks after the previous ISO snapshot because of some minor health problems the lead developer had last week. Therefore, it attempts to fix almost 160 issues that users reported since then, especially some KDE specific bugs. "With this release, we have fixed 159 bugs within the system. This weekly is based on the KDE desktop, and we fixed many of the issues within the KDE desktop as well," said Robert J. Dohnert, CEO of Black Lab Software. "There are a few bugs that we haven't fixed yet." Here's what's new in Black Lab Linux Weekly Build 255 Among the KDE improvements, we can me...

Windows 10, the Only Way to Go: 8 in 10 Companies to Install the OS, Study Shows
A new research shows that more than 8 in 10 firms are planning to install Windows 10 in the coming years, many of them in anticipation of Windows 7 end of support due in 2020. Windows 10, which was offered as a free upgrade to Windows 7 and 8.1 consumers in the first 12 months of availability, has a market share of approximately 24 percent, according to various third-party research firms. Microsoft originally planned to bring the OS on 1 billion devices by the end of FY2017, but the company recently acknowledged that more time would be needed to reach this goal. The latest figures point to approximately 400 million devices running Windows 10. The survey, which was performed by CCS Research in late 2016 included 400 IT decision makers in Europe and the United States, brought forward results that pretty much speak for themselves: companies pl...

Opera Browser Gets Windows 7 Native Look and Feel in Latest Dev Version
The developer version of Opera browser has just received another update that brings several important improvements for users on Windows. First and foremost, this new version pushes the Reborn overhaul one step further, as it introduces new icons which the development team describes as “more refined and elegant.” Some of these icons change their colors when they are active, and without a doubt, more refinements would be included in future updates. Additionally, Opera removed the Speed Dial animation effect when hovering the mouse over the tiles, but instead added a new effect when opening the private mode allowing you to browse the web without leaving any traces. As for Windows 7 users, this update is particularly important because it brings back the OS look and feel, introducing the Aero Glass window frame. There are obviously plenty of bug fixes, including some other tweaks for the ad blocker, so in case you’re part of the developer channel, there’s no doubt tha...

Microsoft: We Won’t Help the Government Hack Our Users
Microsoft is one of the companies that brought the US government to court for data request order which it claimed it violated the law, and now the software giant is reiterating its support for protecting users by saying that it doesn’t plan to collaborate with authorities on hacking customers. Microsoft President and Chief Legal Officer Brad Smith said in a recent interview that the Redmond-based company is fully committed to working with governments on providing user information when they are legally compelled to, but other than that, there’s no intention on revealing customer data as part of any other programs. “Law enforcement needs information, sometimes it needs it very quickly to save lives. When we get those kinds of requests, or warrants, and when they are lawful, we act quickly. We can do so in a matter of minutes. But when governments go too far, we will say no,” Brad Smith was

Google Removes Location Sharing in Google+ before Rolling it Out on Maps
Last week, Google anxiously announced that it will be introducing a new feature for Android, iOS and desktop users of its Maps platform. The new tool would allow users to share their real-time location and ETA with friends and family. To do so, users would simply need to open the side menu inside Google Maps or tap on the blue dot showing their location on the map. Location sharing was designed as a simple and quick method for everyone to share their current position and let people know how much time is left before they reach their destination. In its release report, Google didn’t mention when the new feature would roll out to all users, the tech giant only said that it will reach Android, iOS and desktop users soon. Location sharing is disabled in Google+ But it seems that Google has already disabled the feature in G...

Siri Rumored to Get iMessage and iCloud Integration in iOS 11
Apple just recently introduced iOS 10.3 version, but information about the upcoming iOS 11 continues to surface online. The latest reveals that the Cupertino company may be preparing to bring iMessage integration into Siri, to adapt to user habits. A new report shows that Apple will update Siri in iOS 11 with features like adaptive AI and integration with iMessage and iCloud. Information should be taken with a grain of salt at this point, as nothing is certain until the new version arrives later this year. Nonetheless, the report mentions that Apple’s virtual assistant will have the capacity to learn the user’s habits and provide different options based on context. Users have been rather displeased with Siri’s lack of contextual awareness, seeing how Google Assistant does offer some options in this dire...

Samsung Store in Singapore Catches Fire Ahead of Galaxy S8 Unveil
Tomorrow, Samsung plans on unveiling its newest flagship smartphone, the Galaxy S8 and S8+, but it seems that the company just can’t catch a break. A Samsung store in Singapore caught fire this morning, causing neighboring shops in the mall to close temporarily for safety and cleaning. Samsung confirmed the fire and stated that the store caught fire early in the morning, before opening hours. No one was hurt during the fire at the Samsung Experience Store at AMK Hub, as the fire was extinguished by water sprinklers. Samsung officials added “We are currently assessing the property damage and working closely with the authorities to determine the cause of the fire.” It’s surely an unfortunate turn of events, as Samsung is preparing to host the Unpacked event in New York and London tomorrow, to announce its newest

Get the Windows 7 Start Menu in Windows 10 Creators Update
There are plenty of users out there who still hate Microsoft’s new Windows 10 Start menu, which uses live tiles borrowed from the Windows 8 Start screen, so searching for apps that can restore the Windows 7 Start menu is the first thing they do after a clean install. With Windows 10 Creators Update just around the corner, it was important for these users to receive updates that would make their third-party Start menu apps work correctly on the new OS version. And recently, the creator of StartIsBack, one of the most advanced Start menu apps, released an update to make sure that everything works correctly after installing the Creators Update. StartIsBack 2.0 comes with full support for the Windows 10 Creators Update, if you download and install this new version, so the Start menu should provide an experience similar to what you were getting in the An...

New Leak Shows Size Difference between the Galaxy S8 and S8+
With just one day left until the unveiling, leaks regarding the Galaxy S8 and S8+ continue to surface, as more and more images depicting the two phones surface online. The latest shows how the Galaxy S8 compares with the Galaxy S8+ in size. The standard Galaxy S8 is expected to feature a 5.8-inch display, while the larger S8+ will have a 6.2-inch screen, and the same design as the smaller version. The difference between the two phones will be about half an inch longer screen diagonal on the S8+, which could make the phone a bit uncomfortable to some users. In addition, the new 18:9 aspect ratio would make the phones seem narrower, while the rumored 83% screen-to-body ratio would certainly make the most of the display on both phones. Moreover, the Galaxy S8+ should have an overall size about the same as a 5.7-inch smartphone. It’s still a large s...

All 2017 iPhones to Support Wireless Charging, Apple Watch to Feature LTE
Semiconductor analyst Christopher Rolland spoke with multiple Apple suppliers recently and revealed interesting information about Apple’s plans for 2017 iPhones and the new Apple Watch. The analyst also learned some details about iPhones to be announced next year. First off, the next version of Apple Watch will feature its own cellular modem chip, and therefore will support LTE. Apple has yet to sign off on the new device’s design and solve some battery life issues, but the company does intend to incorporate AirPod support for making and receiving calls on the Apple Watch. VoIP support and data across a CAT-M1 connection could also be implemented for superior battery life. Secondly, the analyst gathered even more details about the smartphones that Apple intends to announce this year. The Cupertino company is said to release three iP...