November 1999

by Louis Bookbinder





This month's Free Sample Shareware has not been selected. -------------------------------------------------

SMUG November '99 Disk of the Month

Assembled by Owen Saxton

Dict Client 1.0
Dict Client is an application that uses the internet standard "dict" protocol to communicate with online dictionaries. It comes set up to search "" allowing you to look up words in several free on-line dictionaries, including Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) and The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing (1998). Freeware..

DoubleTouch 2.1.1
DoubleTouch is a control panel that allows you to select a function key (F1 - F15) which, when double-pressed, duplicates the action of double-clicking in the title bar of a window to collapse or expand it. It can also be configured to collapse (or expand) all windows of an application when a closen modifier key is pressed along with the function key. Shareware fee $9.

Easy Open 1.1
Easy Open is an elegant way to access your favorite applications from within the contextual menu of the finder. It consists of a control panel used for configuration, and a contextual menu plug-in module. The latter presents contextual menu items allowing configured applications to be opened, or to open the selected file with a configured application or with any currently-running application. Configuration can also be initiated from the contextual menu. Shareware fee $7.

FontBuddy 1.3
FontBuddy is a Font Viewer application. It shows all characters of any installed font. It gives keystrokes to access special characters. It also displays font information. It can print font samples. It diagnoses some font problems and shows duplicates. It is easy to use, fast, optimized for screen use, and MacOS 8.6 savvy. Shareware fee $10.

MacOS Items Manager 1.5
MacOS Items Manager is an extension of Extensions Manager. It allows you to enable and disable fonts, control strip modules and contextual menu modules in exactly the same way as Extensions Manager does for extensions and control panels. Shareware fee $5.

MacUptime 0.009
MacUptime is a simple application that displays a small window containing the time since the computer was last re-started, and the number of active processes. Freeware.

Play it Cool 3.32
Play It Cool is a QuickTime and QuickTime VR movie player and simple movie editor. It plays all types of QuickTime movies, including mov, Midi, MPEG, AVI, VCD and QuickTime VR movies. It also opens many image formats, such as PICT, TIFF, GIF, JPEG and PNG; and sound formats, such as snd, AIFF, WAV, MP2, MP3 and AU. Note that QuickTime 4 is required to open some of these formats. Shareware fee $15.

Restore Desktop 1.0
Restore Desktop is a contextual menu plug-in that saves and restores icons' positions on the Mac desktop. It automatically restores icons' positions during display resolution changing. It also allows you to save and subsequently restore icons' positions manually using contextual menus on the desktop. Shareware fee $10.

SmartZip 1.0.1
SmartZip is a MacOS application designed to be the simplest and most efficient way to manage ZIP files. You can automatically compress files (or entire folders) by dragging them onto SmartZip, and in the same way you can easily expand ZIP files. It also allows the contents of a ZIP file to be examined, and individual members to be expanded. Shareware fee $18.

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Word 98 can sometimes tell you that it cannot save the file you are working on. If you just quit the save or exit Word, your entire document can be destroyed. Usually this happens if you are making lots of changes and saving often. It appears that each time you save, Word opens a new copy of the work file. After about 348 opens, Word refuses to save anymore, and your work will be lost, unless you close something else (in another app) first. To prevent this, after a few dozen saves, save and close the document, then open again to continue.

If you ignore this advice and get the error message, do not close the document window. Instead, first go to the desktop and make a copy of the most recent work file, dragging it to a different window. It should contain the complete text of the document (minus the changes since your last save). Now go back to Word and close the document. If the original disappears, you still have the Work file. -MacFixit

**The VBS/Freelinks Worm, found in the wild last July, has infected a large number of users in the last few days. It spreads in an email with the subject "Check this," offering free links to XXX sites.**

**Thousands of AOL users have been scammed into divulging confidential account information through a false email promising prizes for registration with such information. Beware.**


Tip O' the Month

From Your Shareware Team

If you receive an e-mail with a URL, and the URL appears highlighted in blue and underlined, this means Eudora identifies this as a URL and will automatically launch a browser when you click on the URL. Handy. Internet Config, or MacOS 8.5's Internet Extension will do the same for other text applications.

If, when you click on a URL in Eudora, you get: "Sorry; couldn't start that application.", then hold down the option key when you click the URL and Eudora will ask you to identify the browser to use to display the web page. After that the URLs will work correctly.

If odd things start happening on your Mac, the first thing you should do is rebuild your desktop. The usual way to do this is to restart your Mac and hold down the Option-Command keys. Here's a faster way to do it: Close all applications and then press Option-Command-Escape keys. A window will come up asking whether you want to force the Finder to quit. Now hold down Command and Option again and click Force Quit. Now your Mac will ask whether you want to rebuild the desktop. Click OK. - -------------------------------------------------


Mac basics we sometimes forget

Almost all Macintoshes have a CD player (some newer G3s even a CD-RW drive!)

CD-ROMs are simple to understand:

  1. They have enormous capacities. A typical CD-ROM will store 650 megabytes, about 500 times as much as a hi-density floppy
  2. They are always locked - you cannot write on them (except writables - another story). So you can't corrupt them. Unless you scratch the silvery bottom surface.
  3. To mount - push the drive button to open the drive tray. Place the CD-ROM on it silvery side down. Press the button to close the tray. Do not PUSH the tray.
  4. When the CD-ROM is mounted, an icon will appear on the desktop. You can treat it just like a file folder. Open it. Open things in it. Run things in it. Close it.
  5. You cannot move files around in a CD-ROM volume. You can copy FROM a CD-ROM to another folder or volume. You cannot copy TO a CD-ROM or any folder in a CD-ROM.
  6. You can move things around within a folder. However, such changes are cosmetic. Eject the CD-ROM and the changes go away. Even the positions of folders goes back to where they were when you originally loaded the CD-ROM.
  7. To eject the CD-ROM, treat it like a floppy. Drag to the trash. Or select and hit Command-Y. You may be unable to remove it by just hitting the drive button. And the finder will object in any case.
  8. Keep CD-ROMs clean. They will work fine if they have nothing more than fingerprints. Don't use them for coasters. And if one part is scratched, that part is useless, but the rest may work.

Most Macs can play regular music CDs in their CD-ROM drive - you just need the right software.

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My choices, only, out of hundreds of items every month. Drop me a note for YOUR favorite. Links below are either info about or actual downloads, and include commercial products, as well as shareware. These do NOT include demos or beta releases. You might check out Version Tracker for more.
® means update to recently released DOM item. Wish we could catch them all....

APPLEapple icon

MacsBug 6.6f2c1 - primarily used by developers for object-level debugging, OS 9 fix

MRJ 2.2ea2 - Mac OS Runtime for Java, allows you to run Java apps and applets

QuickTime 4.0.3 - use your QuickTime Updater if installed or download the full install

Adobe After Effects 4.1 - shiping Sept, motion graphics and visual effects software

ClearPhonePro 6.0.6 - video/audio conferencing software

Netscape Communicator 4.7 - 128bit & 56bit versions available for OS 7.6 or better - 13.2M

Casady & Greene Conflict Catcher 8.0.6 - fixes & improvements for OS 9 and more

Excalibur 3.0 - LaTeX aware spelling checker

FileMaker Pro 5.0 - database development tools with impoved web & ODBC support and more

Adobe GoLive 4.0.1 - fixes & better OS 8.6 compatibility for the web site creation package

GraphicConverter 3.7.1 - view, edit, convert most graphic file format

Kaleidoscope 2.2.1 - user interface enhancement utility, fixes & other improvements

LinuxPPC '99 Q3 - Unix OS for Power Macs

Nanosaur 1.1.6 - visually stunning 3D game (update to 1.1.6)

Symantec NAV virus defs Oct - virus definition files for Norton AntiVirus 5 & 6

Symantec Norton Utilities 5.0 - now officially shipping the disk repair & data recovery tool

MetaCreations Painter 6.0 - natural media painting tool for graphic designers and fine artists

CE QuickMail Pro 2.0.1 - client & server updates for the email system

SpellCatcher 8.0.1 - multi-lingual spell checker, dictionary, thesaurus...

Virex 6.0 - virus detection & repair tool, call 408-988-3832 for help on the upgrade

Connectix Virtual PC 3.0 - PC emulator to run Windows & DOS applications on your Mac

YA-NewsWatcher 4.2.5 - excellent usenet newsreader for OS 8.5, use v3.1.8 for others

SMUG Navigation Bar

Andromeda Galaxy


©copyright 1999, Louis Bookbinder -
other sources credited where known. Trademark credits, where omitted, remain with their owners  -   updated 6 July 1999


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