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It seems like only yesterday..
Mike's Window

Mike's 'unwanted additions' warning service..

ATI graphics drivers for HD5000 and better will install an exceedingly annoying game enhancement addon called Raptr UNLESS you take the custom install route and UNCHECK it

Foxit Reader (good) is currently attaching Search Protect by Conduit (not good). Uncheck the option because it is a pest.

Java (marginal, but a necessary evil for far too many things) is attaching the Ask Toolbar and associated junk. Uncheck it if you value decent Internet searches.. . 

ImgBurn (Good), but you have to be on your toes to stop the unwanted stuff. Basically, uncheck anything that isn't for ImgBurn, and go for the custom install each time that it is offered to you to ensure that you get to uncheck and skip the junk.. 

A commonly held 'view.. '

 "Well, it worked in Windows 95!"

MVP Award years

2005 - 2006 - 2007

2008 - 2009 - 2010

2011 - 2012 - 2013


The original MVP logo

My Favourite Utilities

Speedfan is a great hardware monitor which can automatically control fan speeds, warn when temperatures are rising in the case, and do a SMART scan of your hard drives. A 'must have'.. 

Piriform Speccy tells you what is inside the box and with great accuracy..

Networx shows download/upload bandwidth used..

Piriform Recuva is probably the best file recovery utility around and is free too.. 

Treesize shows you what you have got, where it is, and how much space it is all using..

Windows 8 alternative start menus.. Classic Shell..

Stardock Start8..

Aomei Partition Assistant is the best free utility of its type..


I haven’t used a 3.5” floppy diskette for quite some while, and the last time was to update the BIOS on an aging machine for which there was no Windows flash utility. I can’t remember the last time I saved a Word document or photo to one, and yet I flatly refused to remove all traces of 3.5” floppy stuff from my computer. For the longest time, I couldn’t visualise a computer without a diskette drive, but no more.

It is gone. I have a case type where there is a moulded slot where the FDD would be so I don’t miss it. In the back of my mind, a computer without a floppy drive is not complete, but I will get over it.

Removal of the drive and associated cable will improve airflow through the case, and I don’t have to wait for the system to locate it at boot up anymore. If I get withdrawal, I have a USB floppy drive which will fill the gap. So, should I keep the box of diskettes? Maybe just one diskette then. What use a USB floppy drive if I have no floppy diskette?

Looking back, they were a pain. If you didn’t freshly format each time, there was a good chance that anything saved would disappear. More than a few would fail format from new. Dust was their enemy, as was bending, heat and magnets. Head alignment was an issue in older drives, with users getting messages that a full disk required formatting, and dust was pulled through the floppy drive onto the heads, exacerbating all other problems.

In deference to the 3.5” floppy, it was more robust than its predecessors, and computer users were able to get programs for their computers from diskettes attached to magazines. New computer users would find it hard to believe that way back when, one could get a trial game, full office productivity suite and two or three utilities all on one disk.

What would we have done without them? :-) 

Posted Fri, Jul 2 2010 0:52 by Mike Hall
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