6 Ways to Reuse Your Old iPod Right Now

Classic iPod image

For every iPhone that is upgraded, there is an older version just sitting, unused, collecting dust in a drawer. So, what do you do with that old iDevice? Well, we have a few ideas when it comes to reusing your old Apple device, so pull it out of the drawer and make it useful!

 

1. Car MP3 Player

iPod touch connected to car stereo

If the music you still love and listen to is still loaded on your old device, then keep it in the car! No more having to hassle with constantly plugging and unplugging your current iPhone or iPod for auxiliary, simply plug your old device in once, and keep it on shuffle and it will give you days of musical variety!

2. Expendable Music Device

Dropped iPhone 6 Plus

Why bring your fancy— nay, expensive —smartphone to work out when all you will focus on is dropping it and scratching the screen? Just take your old Apple device instead, because you don’t care what happens to it— it’s old! By lessening the use of your new device, you’ll also be saving its battery life! BONUS!

3. Kids Toy

Baby with iPod

Why risk a toddler smashing your new iPhone or iPod when you can just hand them your old one? An iPod Touch is still a great device for games and movies, and will keep young children entertained for hours. It may not be running the latest version of iOS, but they won’t know the difference!

4. Backup Phone

Two iPhone swag

If something happens to take your new smartphone out of commission, then you always have your old device to get you through until you receive a replacement. Even though iPods lack the same calling capabilities as iPhones, you can still use iMessage or Skype over WiFi. You can also use the same apps as long as it is upgraded to the latest iOS software and interface.

5. Security Camera/Baby Monitor

iPhone Security

Many people do not know this, but you can turn your old iPhone or iPod Touch into a security camera using a nifty app called Manything. Manything turns your iPod into a security camera and notifies you if it detects movement, and it records the movement so it can be viewed at any time. Using an app called Cloud Baby allows your device to become a baby monitor that you can then connect to your main iPhone or Mac.

6. Remote

iPhone 4 as remote

Anyone who owns an Apple TV knows how easy it is to lose the remote. It’s thin, it’s tiny, and it falls between couch cushions oh so easily. Instead of calling a search party every time you want to watch Netflix, just use your old device as a permanent remote control for your Apple TV or iTunes library. Apple’s Remote app enables you to surf channels and music on your Apple TV or Mac. Plus, the added capability of a iPhone keyboard makes searches 1000 times easier.

What are you using your old iPod for?

External storage? A dedicated kitchen tool? Tell us about it in the comment section!

 

Automating Downloads in 10 Easy Steps

Automating Usenet Downloads

In 2016, there’s absolutely no reason why you should be manually searching Usenet for the same thing repeatedly.

If you find yourself repeating the same searches day after day in order to get the latest and greatest from Usenet, than we’re thrilled to tell you that there’s a smarter way to get the articles you’re looking for. Whether the concept of download automation is brand new, or you’ve always wanted to set it up but lacked the know-how, we have a solution for you.  Setting up automating downloads is a piece of cake when you pair SABnzbd with Easynews.

Follow these 10 simple steps and you’ll be on your way to enjoying your downloaded media more efficiently than ever before.

1) Download and install SABnzbd. SABnzbd runs on Macintosh, Windows, and Linux, and is a binary newsreader collection of python scripts.
SADnzbd homepage

2) Launch SABnzbd. If it fails to launch for some reason, go to http://localhost:8080/ in your browser.

3) Choose a SAB language and theme.

SABnzbd select your language

4) Gather your Easynews server information; for Server Setup, enter your Easynews server address, its corresponding port, SSL on or off, and your username and password. Also, select how many connections you want to use, up to the maximum Easynews allows. NNTP downloads will count against your Gig bank, unless you have unlimited NNTP. See how many Gigs of NNTP data your Easynews plan allows you to download.

SABnzbd - Congifure with Easynews

5) For Access Option, you’ll be given a choice between remote access and access limited to your local network. Picking remote access will give you a greater variety of options. If you pick remote access, create a username and password.
SABnzbd - define your account credentials

6) Restart and launch SAB to fine-tune your configuration. Click Config, followed by General. Under General,  scroll down and make note of the API key.
SABnzbd - API Key
Scroll further down and fill in Cleanup List with extensions you wish to exclude. A lot of the articles and binaries you download will contain extra files you don’t need. As you download content, make note of files you don’t need and fill in their extensions under Clean Up List so that SAB will exclude them.
SABnzbd - Cleanup List

7) Additionally, configure your download locations in the Folders section. The default download location will be on your main hard drive but you can set this up however you wish.

SABnzbd - Downloads folder

8) Once you’re finished with configuration, you’re ready to begin the download process. Upload an NZB on the web interface index.

SABnzbd - Upload an NZB

9) Open the NZB with SAB. You can set your OS to associate NZBs with SAB so this will happen automatically in the future.

SABnzbd

10) Add NZBs for SAB to download via NZB watch folder, RSS, or URL. For the NZB watch folder, (Config->Directories) set a folder to be watched by SABnzbd for downloaded NZBs. When a directory is watched, any NZBs (and files inside the .NZB — zips, gzips, pars, or rars) will be automatically added to SABnzbd.
For RSS, go to Config ->RSS to set up an RSS feed that SAB will automatically download from. For URL, you can enter the URL of the NZB in a box on the web interface index. You may have to enter an API key from the NZB site to do this.

SABNZBD

 

New to Easynews? Start a free trial today!

5 Easy Ways to Maximize Your Hard Drive Space

Hard Drive

In a world where we use computers for virtually everything from browsing the web and playing video games to creating documents and storing media, it is no wonder that our computers tend to get bogged down. When there are unnecessary programs running in the background, or loads of files taking up prime hard drive space, your computer’s performance suffers. In order stay on top of all your files, we recommend that you follow these five tips to make the most of your hard drive space and keep your computer running smoothly. Remember that you should keep up with this maintenance on a monthly basis to ensure that your computer lives a long, healthy life!

1) Disk Cleanup

Disk Cleanup is a utility built right into Windows that removes temporary files, log files, unneeded Windows updates and messages, and more. While you can manually find and delete these unnecessary items, it is a lot easier to use a program to search them out and destroy them for you. To use Windows’ pre-installed Disk Cleanup application, simply click the “Start” button and search for “Disk Cleanup” in the search box. Once you’ve found and clicked on Disk Cleanup, choose the hard disk that you wish to clean up, and then individually select the file types that you want to delete and click “OK”.
Disk Cleanup

If you are a Mac user, OS X has a built-in tool called Disk Utility that allows you to reshuffle separated packages of files, repair them, and delete them to free up memory on your computer. Using an application such as Disk Inventory X for Mac is also a good way to find out what exactly is taking up the most space on your disk so you can determine which files and programs need to be removed.
Disk Utility
There are also free programs for both Mac and Windows computers that you can download to cleanup your hard disk, like CCleaner. Once you’ve downloaded the application, run the program, and click “Analyze” to search for the useless files stored on your computer. Once the application has found the files it needs to delete, click “Run Cleaner” and it will take care of them!
CCleaner

 

2) Remove bloatware and other unwanted programs

Computers nowadays come pre-installed with loads of applications and trials that may not be useful for most users; these programs are referred to as bloatware, and they are more than likely taking up a bunch of unnecessary space on your hard drive. These applications may be easy to find and remove manually, but there are also programs like PC Decrapifier that detects and removes unnecessary programs for you. By removing these junk programs, your computer’s speed shout shoot right up!

 

3) Delete Temporary Files

Every time you download a program, file, or surf the web, you are inadvertently downloading temporary files and caches. Finding and deleting temporary files is usually easy to do manually. In Windows, most temporary files are located under the “Temporary Internet Files” folder (C:\Users\Account Username\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Temporary Internet Files) on Windows computers, and are saved in folders as .TMP files.
Deleting temporary files
You can also preemptively lower the allowable amount of temporary internet files you want downloaded when browsing and downloading from the Internet by changing your temporary Internet file settings. Under the “Browsing History” section, click “Settings” and alter the Disk Space to use between 50-250MB.

For Mac users, while Mac OS X already tries to automatically remove temporary files for you, we recommend CCleaner again to help with detecting and erasing all of those temporary files.

 

4) Disable Hibernation

When you put your Windows computer to sleep, your work and settings are put into the memory of the computer and allows your computer to standby and only use a small amount of power. However, when your computer is set to Hibernate, your open documents and programs are stored on your hard disk and your computer turns off. While this is the best power-saving mode for saving your current work and shutting your computer down, placing those open programs and documents on the hard disk takes up a lot of space, especially when your computer is put into Hibernation mode regularly. You can disable this feature and prevent your current work from being saved on the hard disk when you shut your computer down by going into the “Control Panel”, clicking “Choose what the power buttons do”, and determine the mode you want your computer to be in when you close the lid, press the power button, and press the sleep button.

 

5) Erase Duplicate Files



Gemini that will assist you in finding duplicate files and eradicating them, and for Windows computers there is a program of the same nature called Duplicate Cleaner. Be sure to only scan for duplicates in folders that you personally created to ensure that you aren’t deleting any important Windows or OS X files.

6 Ways to Make Your Internet Connection Faster

6 Ways to Make Your Internet Connection Faster

It’s hard to remember how we were so patient with dial-up.

In this day and age, it is hard for most people to imagine what it would be like without Internet, and it takes a lot of patience to deal with a slow Internet connection. Having a below-average connection speed can affect download and upload time, streaming quality, cause buffering, and much more. If you are tired of taking an unnecessary amount of time out of your day in order to load what you want to surf, or you just want to preemptively avoid having slow connections, then here are some tips and tricks that will surely speed up your Internet connection!

 

1) Find the Best Wireless Channel

Just like with a walkie-talkie, numerous routers can share a channel, and most come defaulted on the same channel. This can end up crowding the channel and slowing down your connection, so be sure to find a channel that has the least number of routers on it. You can do so by using a web app like Wi-Fi Stumbler that will tell you what channels are in use within your computer’s range. You can change your router’s channel on your router’s administration page under the “Wireless” tab.

2) Change Your DNS Server

Computers choose a DNS (Domain Name Server) automatically, but can sometimes choose a bad one that results in slow processing of information. You can manually find a better DNS server, which in turn may significantly improve your Internet speed. Programs such as Google’s namebench allow you to find the best DNS server in range for your needs. Once you’ve found an acceptable server, go into your computer’s DNS settings (the setting panel for this may differ depending on your computer or operating system) and change the information from “default” to the information you have for the new DNS server.

3) Turn Your Router into a Repeater

Did you know that you can actually recycle and reuse your old routers in order to help extend the reach of your Wi-Fi signal? Sometimes our wireless routers don’t cover small areas of the home outside of its range, so this DIY trick could help! Some routers already have repeater functions built in, while others will need manual configuration; if yours is the type that is able to function as a repeater, it will say so on your router admin panel. Next, check DD-WRT, OpenWRT, or Tomato to see if your router is supported. For a list of step-by-step instructions on how to set up your old router as a repeater, visit this site. Since the router you are using to make the Wi-Fi repeater is likely older than your current wireless router, the speed of your Internet may not increase with this trick, but it will definitely allow you to use Wi-Fi in places it didn’t reach before.

Sign up for Easynews – the only web-based Usenet browser with SSL encryption!

4) Limit Background Activity

Sometimes, programs will remain open or be running in the background of your computer, and this can cause a severe loss in speed and connectivity. When unnecessary programs are hogging the memory of your computer, it slows the whole system down. Check to make sure that there are no files being downloaded, scans running, or applications updating while you are using the Internet, and if there are and they are not important, end the processes — that alone could help improve your connection speed.

5) Find and Destroy Adware

Adware and Spyware are free programs that are nearly impossible to uninstall once they’ve been installed. Some are harmless and just an annoyance, while others are dangerous and could take a hit at your privacy. However, no matter how harmful, they almost always gobble up your bandwidth, which slows down your Internet connection. Depending on your computer type, there are programs made specifically for removing adware and spyware in order to clean up your computer and improve speed all around. The best way is just to avoid adware altogether by never downloading any additional files other than the ones you are specifically trying to download. Any extra files, programs, or “toolbars” are potential adware threats.

6) Free Up Space

Thanks to temporary Internet files, your computer can get clogged with unnecessary data. Alleviate this issue by deleting any temporary Internet files that have snuck their way onto your computer, and deleting your cache and cookies. There are many guides on the Internet for how to clear this data, but the process is fairly simple for both Windows and Mac users. Windows users can delete unwanted data files by going to the Control Panel, finding the Programs or the Add/Remove Programs panel, highlighting the unwanted files and clicking “Uninstall”. Macintosh users can skim through their Applications folder and drag and drop unwanted items into the Trash.

 

What’s your secret tip to boost your Wi-Fi speed? Tell us about it in the comments below and you may be featured in an upcoming post on the Easynews blog!

How-to Set Up Easynews VPN on iOS

How-to Setup Easynews VPN on iOS

Since launching our VPN service in late April, Easynews has become even more privacy-minded than in years past. While your identity has always been protected through end-to-end SSL encryption when using our HTTPS Usenet browser, we want to keep your data secure beyond your binary downloads. The Easynews VPN has user-friendly software available for Apple and Windows PCs, but additional devices can access the VPN through manual configuration. In this blog post we will be configuring the VPN on iOS for OpenVPN, PPTP and L2TP.

Click the appropriate setup guide to jump to that section:
Sign in to Easynews to view the VPN server list:

 

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