Speed support at red-sweater

I’m reinstalling and re-registering apps I’ve bought. So far so good. Marsedit I download but I can’t register it because I bought the version before the latest (which I can use / am allowed to use). After some hunting for my reg code I decide I’ll email red-sweater to see if there is something I can do.
I send the email at 11:36pm and SIX minutes later I get a reply and the reg code I need. 6 minutes. And it’s not automated – how do I know? I send a thank you email right back and I get a great response there too. If support is a factor when buying a product then Daniel Jalkut has both. Excellent.

Ripping recommendations?

I just got a 500gb My Book and I’m looking to rip the remaining of J’s music (that’s a LOT of music). I’ll be ripping in Windows. I’ve used CDex and have heard of Musikcube, Media Ripper and apparently Winamp does it. Know of any good others? (iTunes just is not a choice either). I need cddb tagging. The bitrate will be good enough in any, but CDDB lookup + correctly applying those tags is essential. I seem to remember problems with cddb at some point but I forget what. Is there better than CDex?

To av or not av

Do I install av software on the reinstalled machine?

– viruses are bad
– its expected that you do

– malware is much worse
– av eats more resources than it ‘gives back’ in results
– safe practice is most of the battle against virii anyway

So right now I’m veering to No.
I do have spybot installed and hijackthis available. Clamwin is a purely on-demand solution which sounds okay but I have yet to dig around for reviews and comparisons.

Got av?

Slow and secure

For reasons that escape me I am securely wiping my PC’s HD.
I went to reinstall XP (over a year in situ and I’ll be doing OS X next – less than a year…) and figured that rather than just let it overwrite, I’d get everything smooth and clean. I could have formatted but that doesn’t really do the job, it just plays a system trick – after all, that’s how the police et al get their info isn’t it? So I got dban – I’ve mentioned this before because it has the funniest FAQ entry:

Q: Why does my computer start into a black screen after using DBAN?

A: You must reinstall an operating system because DBAN removes it.

and I started running it. Right now it says:
Runtime: 04:18:30
Remaining: 31:11:39
It’s done 12.52% of 250gb.

I’m not complaining at all – it’s doing thorough job – but I do wish I’d looked into the speed. I bought Jade Empire today and was hoping to start playing it.

Tagging mp3’s on the mac

It’s been a constant irritation to find that on the Mac I couldn’t tag mp3’s direct from CDDB. Someone will pop up and say iTunes will do it but it won’t unless it first saw the CD, you have that CD or you bought it from the iTunes store. I tried several utilities which said they could do it and they all failed.
The thing is that there are so many different entries in the CDDB database that any tagging program must give you a way to go find what you want. Example: I have a UB40 album that I ripped and it’s now 01.mp3, 02.mp3 etc. For some reasons a CDDB query didn’t find it. So for a program that doesn’t allow an alternate form of data entry that program is junk.

Parallels. That’s what you want. Get Parallels. Get the Shared folders going and put some music into that or just share /Music. From Windows, now go get the CDDB MP3 Tool. Run that tool on the folder. If it’s not there, use the link and go find directly in the music database. Get the required url and execute the program. Bingo – lots of correctly tagged files ready for wherever they need to go.

It’s easy, it’s free (the tool anyway) and it has no dependencies.


Adium is set to say I’m away after 10 mins and mark away after 15. Skype is set to do the same. Neither do. So I go out with the dog. The screensaver kicks in so at least the machine knows I’ve gone, but both the above give the impression I’m still here. So people think I’m ignoring them. So why do they have this away? Does it work for anyone? Maybe I should figure out a keystroke that auto-aways me in the above and irc.

Trillian – unhelpful

Go to the Trillian website.
Realise their help manual is woeful
Go to their forum
Try to search and you have to complete a captcha
Get it wrong
Try again
Get told to wait because you can’t search again so soon.

How damn stupid is that?

Buy next version of Trillian? Not a chance.

Edit: It’s little things like this that irritate me hugely.
There is a forum I use which has at any time something like 500+ users online at any time. It’s phpbb. Search is not crippled with a captcha. So why the trillian ones?
It’s not that I am averse to building what I want. I have a build of Miranda which took me ages to get right. Lots of fitting the pieces together for the free software to work perfectly as I wanted. I was happy to do that because at no time did I feel someone was getting in my way. Someone chose to have that captcha.
It’s not that I won’t look – I was trying.
It was that I wanted help, I wanted information and the people that I gave money to for a program put a completely unnecessary hoop in the way and told me to jump through it. There is no justification for that stupid little image.

Panic Support?

Panic. I like Panic stuff. I’ve bought Transmit, Candybar and Coda.
I really do like Coda but I hate the way it auto-opens what you last looked at. This default behaviour drives me nuts with any such app and it’s the first thing I stop.
But I can’t see a way of doing that.
So I emailed Panic on May 25 asking how to stop it.
I still haven’t had an answer.
They have no forums. Why?
The only way to get in touch is to use the email that has been lost / ignored / trashed.

So where is the incentive to spend money with them again when the first problem I have is met with silence? The excuse “We were busy” doesn’t really work does it? Get better support.

This was detailed in the first email to Panic.

Update 2: 21 June. Reply that the feature has been requested :)

My first grep

On Windows, jujuedit will open any size text file you throw at it. It’s opened and let me easily work on files over 100mb. It’s free.

Earlier I needed to open a 41mb text file.
Smultron stopped responding so I had to (ctrl-alt-del) force quit it.
Coda stopped responding so I had to do the same.
Textedit also couldn’t cope and when the process hit 120% of CPU (really…) and 1.2gb of memory I killed that too.
It’s only 41mb! That is not large. So I went looking for something that could do the job.
BBedit (which is 14mb, Jujuedit is less than 500k)
That opened it really quickly and I actually could work on it very well. Which is where the grep came in – I needed to replace the tags with different numbers with other tags and the grep did the trick in one operation rather than very many – there are 100,000 lines in the file. Anyway, BBedit is $40 and I don’t really need to spend that on one feature. The 3 editors I have I use differently already for other things – it’s just this size feature. So – is there a free editor that would do the job?

(Textwrangler is the one. Thanks to Claire and someone else whose comment was lost)

An extra license question.

On the desktop I set the view options to be by size. So I have the main HD (80gb), then a usb stick (512mb) then the other 2 drives of 160gb and 120gb. I assume the FAT32 formatting of the stick is screwing it up because it has lots of free space.

Bought Candybar for the Mac last night. Now I have much nicer icons. I used custom folder colours a lot on XP so I could quickly navigate so it’s a feature I wanted. There’s probably a way to have done it for free but it’s 7 quid so it’s hardly expensive.

Okay, the question.
Some software when it has the condition that you can only use it on 1 machine. It may offer a ‘family’ licence of up to ‘x’ machines. This isn’t talking about volume licensing, just about those programs you find, you like and you buy. Now let’s say you bought a program which you could use on only 1 computer – and then some time later you buy a second computer.
Do you even bother to check any license?
Would you just copy the serial into the new machine?
Would you hunt down the license, check their site and send them an enquiry?
Would you just buy another copy?
Does the cost matter?
If there is a determining factor, what is it?

This isn’t being posted out of guilt or indeed innocence. I usually don’t check. So with some programs I’ll be fine and some I probably won’t – though on the PC I think only FeedDemon was purchased and you could use that across your machines. My thoughts are that I have bought the program for me to use and if I have 2 machines then I need that program to be in 2 locations. They are not being given to anyone else, the serial is not being posted anywhere. The obvious thought is also that I can.
Taking Candybar as an example, I have no idea if I can use that in another machine. I’ve searched Panic’s site but can’t see a EULA. If I couldn’t, would you?