Everything You Can Do with Adblock Plus (That Isn’t Just Blocking Ads)

adblock-plus-addonEverything You Can Do with Adblock Plus (That Isn’t Just Blocking Ads)

Adblock Plus is one of the most robust browser extensions out there, and while its namesake is its most-used feature, it’s not just about blocking ads. In fact, you can do all sorts of things with it, including cleaning up Facebook’s interface and making sure web sites aren’t tracking you.

Blocking ads doesn’t support sites like us that create free content, so it’s always a good idea to whitelist the sites in Adblock Plus you really enjoy. It’s a simple process that only takes a couple of seconds.

Go here to read more: Everything You Can Do with Adblock Plus (That Isn’t Just Blocking Ads)

Use VOIP to Save Money on your home phone service (Introduction)

Yesterday I posted an article on how to update the firmware on the Linksys/Cisco PAP2T Phone Adapter. Some might have said, what in the world is he posting that for? How about saving money? Is that a good enough reason? It is for me! 😎 Over the next few weeks I will be posting a series of articles on how to save money with your phone service by switching to a VOIP provider.

I stopped using my land line from Verizon long ago. I switched to Vonage (a VOIP provider). Vonage works fine and all but the price keeps going up. My last monthly bill from Vonage was $29.81. Much better then the $45 or so I was paying for my Verizon land line.

The good news is that right now I am testing two different VOIP solutions.

For company one, I am paying $0.99 (yes 99 cents) a month to have a DID (Direct Inward Dialing) phone number. Each incoming call cost only $.0100 (yes 1 cent) per minute – billed in 6 second increments. For outgoing calls the rate is $.0125 for Canada and US 48. There are very inexpensive international rates available. I do pay an additional .08 cents for each Caller ID lookup on incoming calls. So, for this company, if I go on vacation and do not use the phone my monthly bill is $0.99 (99 cents). I do not have e911 on this account. Voice mail, call forwarding, call waiting, and numerous other options are included free.

For company two I am paying $1.95 a month for my DID number. I am paying $0.015 per minute for incoming calls and $0.0198 per minute for outgoing calls with caller ID included. I do have e911 active on this account ($1.50 per month). The only other fees for this account is NY State Sales Tax. No other fees! If I went on vacation and did not receive or make any calls the monthly bill would be $3.45. It has all the bells and whistles free as company one. You can receive up to three incoming calls at the same time with company two.

Company two has a very nice and easy to use website. I had everything up and running in minutes. The voice mail system of company two is superior. Company two has an online phone book feature that I really like. Company one has some awesome “power user” settings. I like both companies at this point.

With Vonage you receive a phone adapter for free (this connects the internet to your analog phone) but it is locked to Vonage. The two companies I am testing out have a BYOD (bring your own device) policy. You buy ($49.00) the phone adapter (like the Linksys/Cisco PAP2T) and configure it to use their system. The nice thing about this is you can always switch providers easily, if you need to.

In January, here at home, we used 155 minutes incoming and outgoing time total and we paid Vonage $29.81. With company two my bill would have only been $6.52 plus sales tax (8.875%) which is $7.08 total for the month – I like that.

I will report back when I have completed my tests. I will pick a winner and show how to make the switch and save money…

How to update firmware on Linksys/Cisco PAP2 VOIP Phone Adapter

This is an easy way to update to the current firmware of the Linksys/Cisco PAP2T Phone Adapter, using your browser. Using the upgrade url supplied and placing the .bin file in your Dropbox public folder makes it easy.

1. Download the updated firmware file from Cisco/LinkSys (5.1.6 is latest as of today) from here: DOWNLOAD

2. Place the .bin file that is in the .zip file you downloaded into a public Dropbox folder.

3. Go to the Dropbox web interface, find the file select it, and click More Actions –> Copy the public linkWatch movie online The Transporter Refueled (2015)

4. Open a new browser tab or window and enter the following upgrade URL:

“http://[enter PAP2T-IP here]/admin/upgrade?[enter your Dropbox public link for the .bin file here]”

5. Do not power off the phone adapter. The status light will flash while the firmware is being updated. When the light stops flashing the update is complete.

Firefox – still my internet browser of choice! (my addons list)

I still feel Firefox is the best tool to use to browse the Internet these days. Though I would share my current list of addons and such:

Get Firefox – The following are the essential addons I use with Firefox for a clean, safer viewing of the Internet:

Firefox Addons:Watch movie online The Transporter Refueled (2015)

  • Adblock Plus – Annoyed by adverts? Troubled by tracking? Bothered by banners? Install Adblock Plus now to regain control of the internet and change the way that you view the web.
  • DownThemAll! – The first and only download manager/accelerator built inside Firefox!
  • Easy DragToGo – Allows you to open links in new tabs, serach texts, save images and do more with drag and drop gestures easier.
  • Element Hiding Helper for Adblock Plus – Fight the text ads! Element Hiding Helper is a companion extension for Adblock Plus meant to make creating element hiding rules easier.
  • FEBE – FEBE (Firefox Environment Backup Extension) allows you to quickly and easily backup your Firefox extensions. In fact, it goes beyond just backing up — It will actually rebuild your extensions individually into installable .xpi files. Now you can easily synchronize your office and home browsers.
  • Google Redesigned – A complete redesign of popular Google services, Google Redesigned loads and manages several CSS stylesheets that change the appearance of popular tools.
  • KeeFox – KeeFox adds free, secure and easy to use password management features to Firefox which save you time and keep your private data more secure. Think of KeeFox as a bridge or connection between Firefox and KeePass Password Safe, the most popular open source (and free) password manager.
  • Read It Later – Save pages to read later with just one click. When you have time, access your reading list from any computer or phone, even without an internet connection!
  • Stylish – Restyle the web with Stylish, a user styles manager. Stylish lets you easily install themes and skins for Google, Facebook, YouTube, Orkut, and many, many other sites. You can even customize Firefox and other programs themselves.
  • Tab Mix Plus – Tab Mix Plus enhances Firefox’s tab browsing capabilities. It includes such features as duplicating tabs, controlling tab focus, tab clicking options, undo closed tabs and windows, plus much more. It also includes a full-featured session manager.
  • Xmarks Sync – Xmarks is the #1 bookmarking add-on. Keep your bookmarks, passwords and open tabs backed up and synchronized across computers and browsers.
  • Greasemonkey – Allows you to customize the way a webpage displays using small bits of JavaScript.

Greasemonkey Scripts:

  • Drudge Style – Updates the lack of style on the Drudge Report (DrudgeReport.com) so it looks cleaner.
  • FFixer – Enhancements for Facebook: bigger profile pictures and photos, easier viewing of albums, links to download videos, showing people’s age and sign, google calendar integration, keyboard shortcuts & more. Compatible with new Facebook and fully customizable!
  • Profanity Filter – Filters Out Swear Words As You Browse the Internet,
  • Yousable TubeFix – Removes ads and unwanted sections (configurable), allows downloading and resizing videos, changes the default video quality, expands the description and the video size, can prevent autoplay and autobuffering, etc.

Test to see if your ISP is slowing down your connection speed (traffic shaping)

I found a site that will run tests on various Internet ports to see if your ISP is slowing down your connection speeds. This is called traffic shaping. For example they may slow down your speed if you are watching a flash video (ie YouTube) or slow down your downloads.

Glasnost tests enable you to check whether traffic from your applications is being rate-limited (i.e., throttled) or blocked. There are several tests listed: Glasnost: Test if your ISP is shaping your traffic