SOHO : Small Office Home Office
Freeware - Opensource software tips, tricks, tweaks & fixes for managing, securing, improving the performance of SOHO Desktop, Laptop, Networks

Friday, April 29, 2011

Change blogger description font size

  • Go to your blogger Dashboard >>Design>>Edit HTML
  • Find the code

.Header .description {
  font-size: 100%;

  • Modify the font-size accordingly
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Split bloggers header in 2 columns

How to split your template's header into two columns so that you can add your widgets along with your blog's logo. By default, blogger doesn't have any option to split header column into two parts.

Below is the how-to guide.

Go to your blogger Dashboard >>Design>>Edit HTML

Do not tick Expand Widget templates

Search for the following code in your template
<b:section class='header' id='header' maxwidgets='1' showaddelement='no'>
<b:widget id='Header1' locked='true' title='My Test  Blog (Header)' type='Header'/>
Just below the above code, paste the following code
<b:section id='header-right' showaddelement='yes'/>
<div style='clear: both;'/>
It should look like this
<b:section class='header' id='header' maxwidgets='1' showaddelement='no'>
<b:widget id='Header1' locked='true' title='Tweak My  Blogger (Header)' type='Header'/>
<b:section id='header-right' showaddelement='yes'/>
<div style='clear: both;'/>
Now search your template for the following code 
Add the following code just above ]]></b:skin>

#header {display:inline-block;_float:left;}
#header-right {display:inline-block;float:right;padding:15px 15px 15px 15px;}
#header-right .widget {margin:0;}
body#layout #header {width: 50%;}
body#layout #header-right {width: 50%;}

Now search your template for 

]]> </b:template-skin>

and just above that, paste the following code

#layout #header {width: 50%; float: left;}
#layout #header-right {width: 50%; float: right;}

Last step, SAVE TEMPLATE and then go to page elements to see that your header has been spitted into two columns. 

Source and credit :
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Customize blogger template

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Hide post date time author in blogger

This blogger hack is really useful for the ones who want to keep their blog clean in fact very clean by removing all the post date, time and name of author. So if you too belong to the same category then this blogger hack is for you.

First thing first, go to 'layout' and then to 'Edit HTML'. Don't forget to check 'Expand widget templates'.

Hide Post date
To hide the post date, find the code below and delete it.

Hide Post time
This blogger hack says, to hide post time find the code below and remove it, NOW!
<span class='post-timestamp'>
<b:if cond='data:top.showTimestamp'>
<b:if cond='data:post.url'>
<a class='timestamp-link' expr:href='data:post.url' rel='bookmark'
title='permanent link'><abbr class='published'

Hide Post author
To hide the name of author, why don't you find code below and delete it.
<span class='post-author vcard'>
<b:if cond='data:top.showAuthor'>
<span class='fn'><></span>

Congratulations, now your post is time, date and author free.

Source and credit :
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Remove HOME link from blogger

Q.How to remove the HOME link at the bottom of blogpost in blogger?

Step 1. Click "Edit html" under "design" tab.

Step 2. Check the box "Expand Widget Templates"

Step 3. Find the follwoing line in the html code and delete it.

<a class='home-link' expr:href='data:blog.homepageUrl'> <data:homeMsg/></a>
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Remove blogger attribution widget

How to Remove Attribution Widget on Blogger
How to remove attribution on Blogger?
How to remove copyright widget on Blogspot?
How to remove line at the bottom of blog?

If you're using a template by Blogger's Template Designer, most of them have an attribution widget at the bottom of the blog.

Take a look and it's something like this...

You're able to modify only the "Copyright" statement from the widget.

If you want to remove this Attribution widget at Design > Page Elements, you see that it can be edited...

blogger attribution widget

But unlike the other normal widgets, you won't be able to remove the Attribution widget because it doesn't have a "Remove" button.

If you insist on removing the widget, here are the steps to remove the attribution widget on Blogger. It's pretty easy and understandable.

1) First, go to Design > Edit HTML > Tick "Expand Widget Templates". Search for the word "attribution".

2) When you see the Attribution widget code (refer to image above), change the "true" on locked to "false".

3) Go back to Design > Page Elements.

4) Since the lock function is disabled (by changing the code to "false"), it's movable and can be removed as well. Click on "Edit" on the Attribution element.

5) And now with the "Remove" button available, you can finally remove the Attribution widget for good.


Source and credit :

Alternative method :

1  Go to Design > Edit HTML.

2  Take a backup: Download a copy of your template:  this is a backup - save it somewhere safe, in case things go wrong.

3  Click Expand Widgets, so you can see all the code

4  Find this section in the template:

      <!-- outside of the include in order to lock Attribution widget -->      <b:section class='foot' id='footer-3' showaddelement='no'><b:widget id='Attribution2' locked='true' title='' type='Attribution'><b:includable id='main'>    <div class='widget-content' style='text-align: center;'>      <b:if cond='data:attribution != &quot;&quot;'>        <data:attribution/>      </b:if>     </div>
    <b:include name='quickedit'/>  </b:includable></b:widget></b:section>
4  Comment-out the code that displays the Attribution gadget, by putting it inside these characters  <!--   -->    so it ends up looking like this 

      <!-- outside of the include in order to lock Attribution widget -->
<b:section class='foot' id='footer-3' showaddelement='no'> <b:widget id='Attribution2' locked='true' title='' type='Attribution'>
<b:includable id='main'>
    <div class='widget-content' style='text-align: center;'>
      <b:if cond='data:attribution != &quot;&quot;'>
    <b:include name='quickedit'/>
5  Preview the template change, to check that everything is ok.  If not, fix the problem

6  Click Save Template

7  As the template tries to save, you will get a warning message: 
Warning: Your new template does not include the following widgets:
Would you like to keep these widgets on your blog or delete them?
Deleting widgets cannot be undone.
8  If you want to , add an an alternative attribution notice or delete and continue
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Hide / Remove new blogger Navbar

To hide the Blogger Navbar :

Step 1 Log in to blogger

Step 2 On your Dashboard, select Layout. This will take you to the Template tab. Click Edit HTML. Under the Edit Template section you will see you blog's HTML.

Step 3 Paste the bold CSS definition in the top of the template code:

Blogger Template Style
Name:     Rounders
Designer: Douglas Bowman
Date:     27 Feb 2004
Updated by: Blogger Team
----------------------------------------------- */

#navbar-iframe {
   display: none !important;

/* Variable definitions
   <Variable name="mainBgColor" description="Main Background Color"
             type="color" default="#fff" value="#ffffff">
   <Variable name="mainTextColor" description="Text Color" type="color"
             default="#333" value="#333333">
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Add favicon to blogspot

Step 1 : It is easy to create favicon on this site
Step 2: upload the favicon to your bloggers picasa album
Step 3: Editing the template
Now go to your blog and click customize.Then click the Edit HTML tab and search for "title" , this should be inside the header tags.You should find something like mentioned below.
Just after that line add the following line and enjoy the nice icon showing up before your url.
<link href='your url' rel='shortcut icon' type='image/x-icon'/>

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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Adjust Windows' DNS cache

To speed up DNS, Windows puts the DNS information into a local DNS cache on your PC when you visit a site. So when you want to go to a site, Windows first looks in its local DNS cache, called the resolve cache, to see whether the DNS information is contained there. That way, if it finds the information locally, it doesn't have to look in your HOSTS file or query a remote DNS server to find IP information. The cache is made up of recently queried names and entries taken from your HOSTS file.

The cache contains both negative and positive entries. Positive entries are those in which the DNS lookup succeeded and you were able to connect to the Web site. When Windows looks in the cache, if it finds a positive entry, it immediately uses that DNS information and sends you to the requested Web site.

Negative entries are those in which no match was found, and you end up getting a "Cannot find server or DNS" error in your browser. Similarly, when Windows looks in the cache and finds a negative entry, it gives you the error message without bothering to go out to the site.

Negative entries can lead to problems. When you try to make a connection to a site that has a negative entry in your cache, you'll get an error message, even if the site's problems have been resolved and it's now reachable.

You can solve this problem, though, using a Registry hack.
By default, Windows caches negative entries for five minutes. After five minutes, they're cleared from your cache.

But if you'd like, you can force Windows not to cache these negative entries so that you'll never run into this problem. Run the Registry Editor by typing Regedit at a command prompt or the Windows Vista search box, and press Enter. Then go to


Create a new DWORD value with the name NegativeCacheTime and give it a value of 0. (The value might already exist. If it does, edit its value to 0.)

The DWORD determines how much time, in seconds, to keep negative entries in the DNS cache. If you like, you can have the entries stay alive for one second by giving the DWORD a value of 1.
After you're done editing, exit the Registry. To make the change take effect, restart your computer, or flush your cache by issuing the command ipconfig /flushdns at a command prompt. The command will flush your DNS cache -- all the entries, both positive and negative, will be flushed -- and it will be empty until you start visiting Web sites. Negative entries, however, will not be added to the cache if you've given the DWORD a value of 0.

You can also use the Registry to control the amount of time positive entries are kept in the DNS cache. By default, they are kept for 24 hours. To change the default, go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\Dnscache\Parameters again and create a DWORD value called MaxCacheEntryTtlLimit. (If it's already present, just edit the value.) For the value, enter the amount of time you want the entry to remain, in seconds, making sure to use decimals as the base.
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Speed up applications with RAMDISK

There are certain applications that do an unusual amount of reading and writing data. When those disk-intensive applications start competing with other applications, a serious slowdown can occur. You can prevent those slowdowns with the help of RAM disks.

A RAM disk is basically a partition of your PC’s memory that has been formatted and configured (via a special application) to be used as a high-speed target for data reading and writing. These RAM drives are significantly faster than traditional storage, so those applications will see a noticeable boost. Let’s take a look at the process of creating a RAM drive in Windows for this purpose.

Step 1: Download and install the necessary application
One of the best applications for this task is Dataram’s RAMDisk. You can download a free version that will give you up to a 4GB RAM drive. If you need more than 4GB, you can purchase the registration license for only $9.95. I would recommend trying the free version first to make sure the tool will suit your needs.

Once you have downloaded the file, go ahead and install it. The installation is as simple After you have the application installed, you are ready to start creating your RAM disk.

Step 2: Configure the RAM disk
To start the configuration tool, click: Start | Dataram RAMDisk | RAMDisk Configuration Utility. When you start this tool, a small window will open (Figure A) where you take care of all the RAM disk configurations.
Figure A

The maximum size of your RAM disk will depend on how much spare RAM your computer has (you will want to have plenty of extra RAM) and whether or not you have purchased a license.

Enter the size you want, check the type of partition you want to use, and then click Start. You will be prompted to install the device software in order for this to work. The installation of the drivers is part of the RAMDisk start-up.

Note: There are a few reasons why a RAM disk will fail to start. First and foremost is that you need to have administrative privileges for this to work. If you have admin privileges and the RAM disk still fails, lower the size of the RAM disk and try again.

When the RAM disk has been initialized, it will show up in Windows Explorer as a regular disk.

Now, it is very important to understand that, by nature, RAM disks use volatile storage. In other words, when you stop that RAM disk (by either manually stopping it in the RAMDisk utility or by rebooting the computer) all the contents of that RAM disk will be lost.

Fortunately, Dataram has thought of this and gives you another option in the configuration. If you look at the Load and Save tab, you will see that you can set the RAM disk up so that it will load at start-up. You will also want to consider the box marked as Save Disk Image on Shutdown. If you know you do not want to lose the data on the RAM disk, you MUST check at least this latter option. You can also set it up to autosave an image of the RAM disk if the data you are writing to the RAM disk is crucial and you want to ensure it is saved.

Step 3: Use the RAM disk
Tip 1  Speed up Web browsing : One of the easiest ways to use the RAM disk is for temporary Internet files. You can move the temporary folder for Internet Explorer over to your RAM disk, which will do two things: First, it will speed up Web browsing, and second (if you set the RAM disk to not save the image) it will lose all browsing history every time the machine is rebooted. So you get a speed increase and an increase in security.

To do this, open Internet Explorer and then click Tools | Internet Options | General. In the Browsing History section, click Settings. In this new window (Figure B), you will need to make sure the size of the disk space to use is less than the size of the RAM disk you intend on using.

Figure B
By default your temporary IE storage folder will be on C. You need to redirect this to the RAM disk.

After configuring the size, click on the Move Folder button and then relocate the folder to your RAM disk. Click OK when you are done with this task.

Tip2  Some more example  
  1. Portable web browsers
  2. Compression and extraction in Ramdrive
  3. Audio and video conversion
  4. Image / audio / video editing
  5. and more.....

Another great use for RAM disks is for application building. If you are a programmer and want to try to cut down build times, try moving your build folders to a RAM disk and build from within. You will find your build times can be cut by approximately 25 percent. Although this may not sound like a terribly huge time advantage, if you constantly have to rebuild (during testing phases or the like), that 25 percent is going to mean a lot at the end of the day.

RAM disks are very handy tools for those trying to squeeze out as much performance and/or security as they can from their PCs. 

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Thursday, April 21, 2011

Recover deleted partitions with Testdisk, step by step instructions + Video Tutorial

Video Tutorial at the end of post

Example problem
We have a 36GB hard disk containing 3 partitions. Unfortunately;
  • the boot sector of the primary NTFS partition has been damaged, and
  • a logical NTFS partition has been accidentally deleted.
This recovery example guides you through TestDisk, step by step, to recover these 'lost' partitions by:
  • rewriting the corrupted NTFS boot sector, and
  • recovering the accidentally deleted logical NTFS partition.
Recovery of a FAT32 partition (instead of an NTFS partition) can be accomplished by following exactly the same steps. Other recovery examples are also available. For Information about FAT12, FAT16, ext2/ext3, HFS+, ReiserFS and other partition types, read Running the TestDisk Program.

One condition:
  • TestDisk must be executed with Administrator privileges.

Important points for using TestDisk:
  • To navigate in TestDisk, use the Arrow and PageUp/PageDown keys.
  • To proceed, confirm your choice(s) with the Enter key.
  • To return to a previous display or quit TestDisk, use the q (Quit) key.
  • To save modifications under TestDisk, you must confirm them with the y (Yes) and/or Enter keys, and
  • To actually write partition data to the MBR, you must choose the "Write" selection and press the Enter key.
If this hard disk's primary partition contained an operating system, it would most likely no longer boot up - due to its corrupted boot sector. If the hard disk was a secondary (data) drive or you can connect the drive to another computer in its secondary channel (usually where a CD/DVD drive is connected), the following symptoms would be observed:

  1. Windows Explorer or Disk Manager displays the first primary partition as raw (unformatted) and Windows prompts: The drive is not formatted, do you want to format it now?[You should never do so without knowing why!]
  2. A logical partition is missing. In Windows Explorer, that logical drive is no longer available. The Windows Disk Management Console now displays only "unallocated space" where this logical partition had been located.

Running TestDisk executable
If TestDisk is not yet installed, it can be downloaded from TestDisk Download. Extract the files from the archive including the sub-directories.

To recover a lost partition or repair the filesystem from a hard disk, USB key, Smart Card, etc., you need enough rights to access a physical device.
 Under DOS, run TestDisk.exe
 Under Windows, start TestDisk (ie testdisk-6.9/win/testdisk_win.exe) from an account in the Administrator group. Under Vista, right-click testdisk_win.exe and then "Run as administrator" to launch TestDisk.
 Under Unix/Linux/BSD, you need to be root to run TestDisk (ie. sudo testdisk-6.9/linux/testdisk_static)
 Under MacOSX, if you are not root, TestDisk (ie testdisk-6.9/darwin/TestDisk) will restart itself using sudo after confirmation on your part.
 Under OS/2, TestDisk doesn't handle a physical device, only a disk image. Sorry.

To recover partition from a media image or repair a filesystem image, run
  • testdisk image.dd to create a raw disk image
  • testdisk image.E01 to recover files from an Encase EWF image
  • testdisk 'image.???' if the Encase image is split into several files.

To repair a filesystem not listed by TestDisk, run testdisk device, i.e.
  • testdisk /dev/mapper/truecrypt0 or testdisk /dev/loop0 to repair the NTFS or FAT32 boot sector files from a TrueCrypt partition. The same method works with filesystem encrypted with cryptsetup/dm-crypt/LUKS.
  • testdisk /dev/md0 to repair a filesystem on top of a Linux RAID device.

Log creation

  • Choose Create to instruct Testdisk to create a log file containing technical information and messages, unless you have a reason to append data to the log or you execute TestDisk from read only media and must create the log elsewhere.
  • Choose None if you do not want messages and details of the process to be written into a log file (useful if for example Testdisk was started from a read-only location).
  • Press Enter to proceed.

Disk selection
All hard drives should be detected and listed with the correct size by TestDisk:
  • Use up/down arrow keys to select your hard drive with the lost partition/s.
  • Press Enter to Proceed.

 If available, use raw device /dev/rdisk* instead of /dev/disk* for faster data transfer.

Partition table type selection
TestDisk displays the partition table types.
  • Select the partition table type - usually the default value is the correct one as TestDisk auto-detects the partition table type.
  • Press Enter to Proceed.

Current partition table status
TestDisk displays the menus (also see TestDisk Menu Items).
  • Use the default menu "Analyse" to check your current partition structure and search for lost partitions.
  • Confirm at Analyse with Enter to proceed.
Now, your current partition structure is listed. Examine your current partition structure for missing partitions and errors.

The first partition is listed twice which points to a corrupted partition or an invalid partition table entry.
Invalid NTFS boot points to a faulty NTFS boot sector, so it's a corrupted filesystem.
Only one logical partition (label Partition 2) is available in the extended partition. One logical partition is missing.
  • Confirm at Quick Search to proceed.
Quick Search for partitions
  • Confirm according to your OS and created partitions to proceed.

TestDisk displays the first results in real time.

During the Quick Search, TestDisk has found two partitions including the missing logical partition labeled Partition 3.
  • Highlight this partition and press p to list your files (to go back to the previous display, press q to Quit).
All directories and data are correctly listed.
  • Press Enter to proceed.

Save the partition table or search for more partitions?
  • When all partitions are available and data correctly listed, you should go to the menu Write to save the partition structure. The menu Extd Part gives you the opportunity to decide if the extended partition will use all available disk space or only the required (minimal) space.
  • Since a partition, the first one, is still missing, highlight the menu Deeper Search (if not done automatically already) and press Enter to proceed.

A partition is still missing: Deeper Search
Deeper Search will also search for FAT32 backup boot sector, NTFS backup boot superblock, ext2/ext3 backup superblock to detect more partitions,
it will scan each cylinder

After the Deeper Search, the results are displayed as follows:
The first partition "Partition 1" was found by using backup boot sector. In the last line of your display, you can read the message "NTFS found using backup sector!" and the size of your partition. The "partition 2" is displayed twice with different size.

Both partitions are listed with status D for deleted, because they overlap each other.
  • Highlight the first partition Partition 2 and press p to list its data.
  • The file system of the upper logical partition (label Partition 2) is damaged
  • Press q for Quit to go back to the previous display.
  • Let this partition Partition 2 with a damaged file system marked as D(deleted).
  • Highlight the second partition Partition 2 below
  • Press p to list its files.

It works, you have found the correct partition!
  • Use the left/right arrow to navigate into your folders and watch your files for more verification

Note: FAT directory listing is limited to 10 clusters - some files may not appear but it doesn't affect recovery.

  • Press q for Quit to go back to the previous display.
  • The available status are Primary, * bootable, Logical and Deleted.
Using the left/right arrow keys, change the status of the selected partition to L(ogical)

Note: If a partition is listed *(bootable) but if you don't boot from this partition, you can change it to Primary partition.
  • Press Enter to proceed.

Partition table recovery
It's now possible to write the new partition structure.
Note: The extended partition is automatically set. TestDisk recognizes this using the different partition structure.
  • If all partitions are listed and only in this case, confirm at Write with Enter, y and OK.

Now, the partitions are registered in the partition table.

NTFS Boot sector recovery
The boot sector of the first partition named Partition 1 is still damaged. It's time to fix it. The status of the NTFS boot sector is bad and the backup boot sector is valid. Boot sectors are not identical.

  • To copy the backup of the boot sector over the boot sector, select Backup BS, validate with Enter, use y to confirm and next OK.
More information about repairing your boot sector under TestDisk Menu Items. The following message is displayed:
The boot sector and its backup are now both OK and identical: the NTFS boot sector has been successfully recovered.
  • Press Enter to quit.
  • TestDisk displays You have to restart your Computer to access your data so press Enter a last time and reboot your computer.
Video Tutorial:

Thanks to amzertech for creating this tutorial. 
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