Tired of dealing with your Adobe software’s secret calls home behind the scenes?! Annoyed by call-back popups that hassle you about your license info or some update BS after you legally paid for the product?! Want to take back your right t0 privacy?!
“Calling Home” is the process in which some piece of software calls back to it’s companies’ central servers across the internet and delivers them some piece of information from your computer. It’s typically used to verify license information, but it could be used to deliver any piece of information about you from your computer. It usually happens behind the scenes, without your knowledge, and without your permission. You have the right to stop this process and protect your privacy, and it’s actually really easy to do.
The Hosts File
It’s all about this simple little text file on your computer called the “Hosts File.” This file, among other things, can tell your Mac to reroute all internet traffic to certain adresses back to your computer’s address on your network, causing a loup that keeps your computer from calling out to certain adresses on the internet. It’s all very clever, you see. But essentially, you enter the addresses you don’t want your computer to be able to communicate with, and your mac blocks all communication with those addresses, which keeps Adobe products from being able to call back to their company’s servers.
This process, by the way, doesn’t block updates or help file databases, those are different servers.
Follow These Easy Steps
1) Open “Terminal”
Find the Terminal app in “Applications > Utilities > Terminal” or search for “Terminal” in Spotlight.
2) Open The “Hosts” file
From the command line interface in Terminal, copy & paste the following:
3) Edit The Hosts File
Use the arrow keys on your keyboard to navigate to the end of the entries in your “hosts” file, and then copy & paste the following lines into the file:
127.0.0.1 activate.adobe.com 127.0.0.1 practivate.adobe.com 127.0.0.1 ereg.adobe.com 127.0.0.1 activate.wip3.adobe.com 127.0.0.1 wip3.adobe.com 127.0.0.1 3dns-3.adobe.com 127.0.0.1 3dns-2.adobe.com 127.0.0.1 adobe-dns.adobe.com 127.0.0.1 adobe-dns-2.adobe.com 127.0.0.1 adobe-dns-3.adobe.com 127.0.0.1 ereg.wip3.adobe.com 127.0.0.1 activate-sea.adobe.com 127.0.0.1 wwis-dubc1-vip60.adobe.co… 127.0.0.1 activate-sjc0.adobe.com 127.0.0.1 adobe.activate.com 127.0.0.1 adobeereg.com 127.0.0.1 www.adobeereg.com 127.0.0.1 hl2rcv.adobe.com
4) Save & Exit
“Control + O” to save the file, then..
“Return” when it asks for a file name, and finally..
“Control + X” to eXit the host File’s editor.
5) Flush DNS cache
To make the new host file’s entries take effect immediately, copy & paste the following line of text into the terminal window (and don’t forget to hit “Return”):
6) Finally, you can test your work by opening any web browser on your computer and trying to go to any of the addresses you just blocked. For example, enter ” activate.adobe.com” or “ereg.adobe.com” into the address bar in your web browser and you should get an error back saying that you could not connect to that address. …And voila! It worked. The Adobe call back servers are now blocked from your computer.
Jailbreaking alters the code on your iPhone, iPod, or iPad to give you more control over how your device operates. There are a lot of reasons people like to jailbreak their devices; to add exciting new software not supported in the iTunes marketplace, to modify their iPhones, iPods, and iPads in new ways, to gain more control over their product’s features, and to disable undesirable features like Apple’s ability to connect and get data from your iPhone, to name just a few. Jailbreaking is easy again with the release of Absinthe 2.0 from the developers at greenpois0n.com (note that the last “0″ in pois0n is a “zero” and not an “O”). You simply back up your phone, update to the latest iOS, & then run the simple Jailbreak software.
The word “Untethered” in the phrase “Untethered Jailbreak” means that you don’t need your iPhone, iPod, or iPad connected to a computer everytime you start it up or reset it, so Untethered is the type of Jailbreak you want. Conversely, a Tethered Jailbreak requires you to connect to a computer every time your device starts up or the Jailbreak fails, which is NOT what you want. These instructions are for an Untethered Jailbreak. It will work on the following devices:
iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S
Pad 1, iPad 2, iPad 3
iPod touch 3rd generation, iPod touch 4th generation
One of the most annoying things to deal with on a modern Mac is the horizontal scroll created by dragging your fingers across the surface of the Magic Mouse. It can be infuriating, scrolling windows to the left or right with the slightest touch of the mouse, often when all you wanted to do was grasp our mouse and move the cursor. Current versions of the Mac’s OSX operating system do not allow you to turn this feature off, which is absolutely ridiculous! I finaly found a solution to this problem, follow the steps below to FINALLY turn off this annoying feature:
1) Download and install the FREE MagicPrefs application from: http://magicprefs.com/
2) Open the MagicPrefs preferences pannel by clicking on the MagicPrefs icon that was added to your Mac OSX System Preferences (Applications/System Preferences) when you installed the MagicPrefs app.
3) Inside the MagicPrefs preferences pannel, make sure the “Magic Mouse” tab at the top is selected.
4) Click on the “Configure Scrolling” button (in the lower right corner).
5) UNCHECK the boxes for both “Diagonal” and “Horizontal” next to the “One Finger Scrolling” item. (Diagonal scrolling needs to be disabled because the slightest movement with your finger across the magic mouse to the left or right will trigger the Diagonal movement sensor and your window will still scroll horizontally, even if the majority of your finger movement went vertically.)
6) That’s it, you’re done. Click the “Close” button, and then close the MagicPrefs preferences pannel. Now horizontal scrolling has been disabled from finger movements across your Magic Mouse.
If you use that extra set of number keys located on the numberpad section of a full sized keyboard, you have probably noticed by now that current Mac laptops such as the MacBook Pro and MacBook Air are lacking those keys, and current versions of OSX (up to the current 10.7.4) do not allow any way to remap your keys through the software to get them back. This is a big problem for people who use software that rely on the numberpad number keys specifically, such as Microsoft Excel and Adobe InDesign.
This problem is at it’s worst in InDesign, in which keyboard shortcuts to specific character & paragraph styles can only be set to keys on the numberpad, a function vital to creating any sort of complex document. Adding an additional USB or Bluetooth keypad is not only impractical for laptop users on the go, but it does not solve the problem because the modifier keys on the laptop’s built-in keyboard (such as command, option, control, and shift) needed to activate the style shortcuts cannot be combined with number key presses on the external USB or Bluetooth numberpad, rendering external number keypads useless.
There is this annoying problem with OSX 10.7 (currently all versions 10.7.1 – 10.7.4) in which every time a second monitor that is hooked up to either a mac laptop or iMac goes to sleep, when it wakes it replaces the desktop wallpaper with a solid grey background.
The only solutions I have found so far are very annoying ones. You can:
A) Turn off your 2nd monitor, and then turn it back on, ..which brings back the wallpaper but moves any open windows from that 2nd monitor to your 1st. Ugggg.
B) Open Terminal (Applications/Utilities), type the following command, and then hit enter:
(Make sure you include the capital “D” in Dock, or it won’t work.)
Typing this every time your monitor wakes up is, of course, a huge pain. So I made a simple applescript app to do it for you. Follow the directions below, add the app to your desktop, and then simply click the icon every time OSX replaces your beautiful wallpaper with The Grey of Death. Here’s how:
1) Open AppleScript Editor (Applications/Utilities)
2) In the main top text box type:
do shell script “killall Dock”
3) If you want to test it before you save it, click on the “Run” button. Your desktop should flash, and then your wallpaper should be back. If the test works, proceed to step 4. If not, you typed it in wrong.
4) Click on File > Save, give it a name like “killall Dock.app”, change the save location to your desktop, change the File Format dropdown to “Application”, and click “Save”. Boom! You’re done! Now you can move that icon you just created to anywhere convenient on your desktop and just click it when ever you get a grey wallpaper. Enjoy!
Normally the Kindle Fire does not allow you to install Spotify, keeping it unavailable in the official Amazon App Market and hard to find everywhere else. However, with a little know how you can be streaming music from Spotify on your Kindle Fire in no time. Here is how:
1) Determine the current version of the Spotify app for Android by visiting the official Android Market and noting the current version number for Spotify.As of this post the current version is Spotify 0.4.12.180 .
2) Locate the “SpotifyAndroid.apk” Android app and download it. You can search google for it, however I found the current version at Softpedia here: http://handheld.softpedia.com/progDownload/Spotify-Mobile-Android-Download-86989.html
3) Sideload the App onto your Kindle Fire, open it up, and sign in or create an account. For more information on how to sideload apps, see my previous article here: Don’t believe the hype, Sideloading Android Apps on the new Amazon Kindle Fire is an EASY 2 step process!!
Spotify is now all ready to go on your Kindle Fire. Enjoy!
Make the Missing Controls Appear
After you run Spotify you will notice that many of the onscreen controls you need to control your music playing are nowhere to be found. You can still select tracks, add them to playlists, and most of the other Spotify functions, but the play/pause, fast forward, and rewind buttons have disappeared. You don’t really need them, but they are nice to have.
by John Daily
Strait out of the box your Kindle Fire comes with everything necessary to get it up and running, but the optional accessories listed below will greatly enhance your experience with this feature-packed tablet.
This is absolutely essential. Please get a cover to protect your Kindle Fire immediately. I can’t tell you the number of times the cover on my Fire has saved it from total destruction; despite the fact I always treat it with kid gloves.
However, you don’t need to spend a fortune to cover your Kindle Fire. Although most retail outlets that stock the Fire charge an arm and a leg for their minuscule variety of overpriced covers, with most charging $50-$60 (1/4 the price of the device itself), you can find covers for a far cheaper price elsewhere. Perfectly good covers can be found on Amazon.com and Meritline.com for as little as $10-$19. Here are a few of my favorites:
by John Daily
Although the Fire lacks a built in microphone, now users can connect an external mic to the device’s headphone jack and record audio. This means you can finally use your Kindle Fire to audio Skype, Google Phone, record voice memo’s, or record any other audio.
You don’t need to preform any special hacks, and this feature appears to work on any audio recording software that is compatible with the Fire.
So then, what is the big secret? Why is this news? Well, for whatever reason, Amazon doesn’t want you to know that your Kindle Fire can record audio. They don’t advertise this ability, and they currently don’t offer a single app in their highly controlled app store that allows you to record audio on the device. So, to use this feature you will need to obtain the proper external microphone and find audio recording apps elsewhere.
by John Daily
You can easily legally install apps on your Kindle Fire from sources other than the official Amazon Android Marketplace, which has a very limited supply of Android apps. In a previous article I discussed the procedure for Sideloading, in which apps are download from various websites onto a desktop or laptop computer, and then transferred over a USB cable onto the Fire, but you can also find Android apps that allow you to bypass the need for another computer all together. With Apps such as GetJar and Mobilism Market you can find and install apps directly from your Kindle Fire tablet. So, it’s time to break free from the limitations imposed by Amazon’s App Marketplace and take control of your powerful Kindle Fire Tablet.
by John Daily
You need to have a rooted ATV2 (Apple TV 2) with the XBMC media center installed for this process to work. For more information on this view my article on rooting: Root Your Apple TV
For more tips on using XBMC on your ATV2, visit this article: XBMC Media Player for Apple TV2 Tricks
Your Apple TV 2 can also learn to use just about any infrared remote. To set up addition remotes to work with your ATV2, do the following:
From the ATV2 main menu: Settings > General > Remotes > Learn Remotes, then Follow the on-screen instructions.