Friday, February 17, 2012

How to Use Your Laptop as A WiFi Router in Windows 7

Some times you need to have a wireless network when you don't have a wireless router. But what you may not have know is that your laptop (or possibly desktop) could do it all along...for free!

You will need a computer with:
- Windows 7
- A LAN port and Wireless Card

1. Right-click your network/WiFi icon on the taskbar and select "Open Network and Sharing Center" 
2. Click "Change adapter settings"

3. Make sure your network cable is plugged into your laptop or desktop and your modem or router.

4. Right-click "Local Area Connection" and select "Properties".

5. Select the "Sharing" tab.

6. Check the "Allow other network users to connect though this computer's Internet connection" checkbox and click OK.

7. Right-click your network/WiFi icon on the taskbar and select "Open Network and Sharing Center" again.
8. This time, select "Manage wireless networks".
9. Click "Add".
10. Select "Create an ad hoc network". 
11. Enter an name and password for your personal WiFi network. 
12. Left-click your network icon and make sure you're connected to your new ad-hoc network that you created. 

13. Connect your any other WiFi enabled device to the network you specified with the password you created.

Note: If you want to use your computer with a normal WiFi network, you need to go back and uncheck the setting in step 6 to disable sharing of the Local Area Network.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Some tools and tips to help organizing/optimizing/de-clutter one's computer

One of my most frequent problems is that I will run out of space. A few excellent space visualization tools are:
also Mindgem’s Folder Size:

Another all around great tool is Piriform’s CCleaner (, as well as getting your computer to run smoother it is great for managing what programs start up when your computer does. Disabling many of the unneeded ones will make your computer load your user account faster, and free up visual space when all of these programs aren’t popping up all over the place.

Another simple tip that is sometimes overlooked is your desktop background. Change your desktop background to a picture that isn’t too “busy”. If you find your eyes straining at all to read your icons you very well may have a busy background. Change it to something simple. Scenic landscapes are excellent. If you want a picture of your loved ones, find a picture that doesn’t has a simple background behind them, maybe even crop the picture to position it so that your icons don’t land on their face.

Maybe there are some files you don’t need anymore?
In windows 7 you can easily search for files by specific filters such as:
datemodified:‎1/‎1/‎1996 .. ‎12/‎31/‎2008 which selects all old files modified between 1996 and 2008!
or find large files with: size:>100mb

I hope these ideas can help you in the weeding out and organization of your computer!
Peace from Ahren

Friday, February 3, 2012

Ahren's Essential Firefox Add-Ons

Today I shall share with you the Firefox plugins that I always install every time that I have to reinstall Firefox. So here goes:

Adblock Plus

When I browse the web on someone else's computer or a computer at school, I sometimes have to take a step back and remember that the web actually does have ads! This plugin is amazing, it even removes ads from within youtube videos.
To still support the web however, they have an option to keep unobtrusive ads such as simple text based ads and I encourage you to keep this option enabled. An option I always disable is: show tabs on flash and java. When enabled, this puts a small button to potentially block an element on every flash and java element on a webpage, something that I find to be quite annoying since ABP already takes care of practically every flash based ad that you'd want to get rid of. There is also a version of  ABP for Chrome as well.


Xmarks is a genius add-on for syncing your bookmarks. Not only does it allow you to sync your bookmarks between multiple computers but it is cross-browser platform as well supporting Firefox, Chrome, Internet Explorer, and Safari. I personally use it 1. to back up my bookmarks 2. to sync between the two browsers that I mainly use (Chrome & FF) and 3. to sync between my main computer and others that I use. 

Add to Search Bar

If you like using the search bar up in the top right of Firefox for more than just Google, this add-on is a must. It allows you to add practically any search box on any website FF's search box. So simple but very helpful.

Textarea Cache

A pure lifesaver! One of the most frustrating things is when you are in the middle of a post...and Firefox crashes! Instead of losing all of your post, Textarea Cache keeps a log of what you are typing and it's all available when you load up Firefox again.


If you do any shopping online, especially stuff that has a model number, this is a great money saver. It detects items on many pages and searches to see if it is available cheaper on a different site. If it's available, InvisibleHand will pop up and let you know!

Web Developer Toolbar

A webdeveloper's best friend. This toolbar contains many tools to help. From editing CSS directly on the page so you can immediately see changes, to disabling a variety of things to help troubleshoot, to resizing the page to see what it might look like for users with other-sized screens this add-on is key for anyone working in web dev.

Honorable mentions:


I often install foxytunes but not always. It allows you remotely control a very wide variety of media players directly from your browser while browsing. I find that feature helpful every once and a while but what I end up using it the most for is an alarm clock. It has a feature where it will turn on your music at whatever time you have specified. So I just have it play my "Wake up" playlist in iTunes.


Another addon for web developers and although I haven't used it too much I realize that it's quite good. It's comparable to Chrome's "Inspect Element" option it allows you to gain more information and improve webpage design and functionality.