Saturday, November 19, 2016

Free up or Recover your Google / Gmail Space

Are you also facing space crunch in your Gmail or Google Accounts? Getting this message everytime you open your Gmail?

Among many ways from archiving and downloading your heavy mails to deleting the unwanted mails and photos, there is also an quick and easy way. This is to reduce the size of the uploaded items in Google Photos from Original to High Quality.

How does it work?

There might be many photos in your Google Photos that you have uploaded in the Original Quality which would be taking space in your Google Storage. If you convert those Photos to High Quality, they would still be large enough for your social usage but would not take up Storage Space in you Google Account.

How to do it?

Go to

Choose Recover Storage.
Google will tell you how much space you can recover by using this process / tool. For instance, I would be able to reduce 5.9 GB in my Google Account.

Click on Compress.
You will get an information message, Click on Compress again to confirm.

And that's it. You have started the process and after some time those Low on Storage or Out of Storage Space messages are gone for a good time!

Was this helpful? Tell in comments!

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Win 10: How to capture Screenshots the best way!

There are multiple ways to take a screen grab in Windows 10, from simply using the Snipping Tool to hitting the PrintScreen Button on the keyboard.

But there are downsides to both these methods:

  • The PrintScreen button grabs the whole screen which you do not need all the time and later you need to use Paint or some other tool to crop a portion.
    Yes, we do have Alt+PrintScreen option to grab the active Window but what if you want a piece of it or want to combine portions of two windows?
  • Then comes the Snipping Tool, it gives you the flexibility to grab any portion of the screen by dragging the mouse pointer. But here is the catch. You have to fire up the program from Start Menu or use a shortcut and then the hassle to save the file!

Better than all this is using the Screen Grab functionality of the One Note application / software. Here is what you need to do:

  • Install One Note as a part of Office or Stand alone, if it is not already there in your machine.
  • Open the application and let it sit in the tray at the bottom right near the clock.
  • Press Windows + Shift + S key combination in windows 8.1 and 10 and above to grab a screenshot by using the mouse pointer. In the earlier version of Windows like Win 7, you don't need to press the Shift key, only Win + S.

Taking the screenshot:

  • Press and then click and drag your mouse to select the desired portion of the screen.
  • As soon as you are done, a pop-up will appear asking where to keep the screenshot. Here are the options you have:
    • Save it in any of the Notebooks or Sections provided in the list.
    • Press Escape Key and it will be copied to your Clipboard.
    • You can default the save location by clicking the "Don't ask me again…" checkbox.

I prefer using the Esc option and pasting the Screengrab wherever I want. But if you want to keep a record, you always have the option to save it in One Note.
So, how helpful it was? Let me know in the comments if you have a better idea to share!

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Mac: Set Up VPN to be Anonymous

Content blocked for your location?
Results filtered because of Govt. Regulation?
Privacy concerns?

Are we going to let the Internet be free, the basic reason for which it was created and the basic nature it which it was adopted? It's a huge debate and a big fight.

In my quest to find a usable VPN for Mac which can help you access that un-accessible, I found the following.
Above link has many options but the problem with free VPNs is that either they do not work or the speed is too slow for them to be usable.

I tried the first one ProXPN first and it turned out to be pathetic. Everything was configured but probably the speed was too slow to load even a basic page.

Then I tried SecurityKiss.

You need to configure this to be used with your Mac.
Above link has the steps on how to configure.

Tunnelblick needs to be installed and then the configuration files for SecurityKiss needs to be used.

Once the Tunnelblick is installed, use the below link to download the configuration files. You will need an account so create a free one.

Just double click on any file and it will be configured. You will get a message which will say that one file is configured.

I would recommend to use it only when actually needed because it has limited transfers on free account.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Mac : How to copy Screenshot to the Clipboard?

To copy clip in the memory:

Command + Control + Shift + 4   - To Copy part of the screen.

Command + Control + Shift + 3   - To Copy entire screen.

To save it to your Mac instead:

Just don't use Control Key.

Command + Shift + 4   - To Copy part of the screen.

Command + Shift + 3   - To Copy entire screen.

Another Tip:

When you are grabbing part of the screen, press Space key to grab the active window.
(Pressing space will highlight active window and just press that Camera icon to copy).

Monday, February 9, 2015

How to Free up Space in Gmail [ without loosing your data ] ?

Though Gmail is offering large enough space to it's free users; space is something which is never enough.

When you start getting the following message on the top of your Gmail, it's time to make some space. But what would you do? Find unimportant mails and delete? Well, like Gmail, we also believe in "don't delete anything" philosophy. Therefore, a better way would be to find not-that-useful mails and create a backup. Read on to know how it can be done:

Here is how:

Step 1 : Select the mails you want to backup. If you want to be fast, use following tips:
  • Use search keywords like larger:10m or older:2000/03/03 to search mails larger than 10M bytes or older than the specified date, respectively.
  • Once the mails are displayed, first select all using the topmost checkbox and then unselect the mails you want to keep.
  • You can use up-down arrow keys to navigate in the mails and hit 'X' to select or unselect.
Step 2 : Once the mails are selected, apply a new Label to them so that we can use the feature of downloading mails with a specified label later on.

Step 3 : Go to or navigate to and select Download Data. Here we will create an archive using the Google Tools.

First, click on Select None to unselect all the features as we only want to select Gmail while downloading our data.

 Select the Label you have created.

 It will look something like this where only the Mail option will be selected:

 Select the File Format and click on Create Archive.

This might take some time, even hours, depending upon the amount of data you have selected.

Once the archive is ready, you will get a mail with the download link. The mail will be sent by "Google Takeout".

Step 4: Once the archive is created and you have got a mail with the link, download the file and keep it somewhere safe.

One thing to be noted is this is a time limited archive and has an expiry date. So if you are considering deleting the archived mail to free up the Gmail space, don't forget to download this archive as soon as possible and keep it at a safe place.

Step 5 : Delete the archived (and downloaded) mails.

Once you have finished downloading the archive successfully. Cross check it for the consistency of the downloaded file and try unzipping it once to be sure.

Next, go back to Gmail, select the label that you have just archived, and hit the Delete Button.

Once the mails are removed from the Trash, we would have freed around 1GB of the space from Gmail!
The downloaded Mbox file can be opened in email clients like Thunderbird.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Life on the Keyboard

IRL and AFK? What does it tell?

Well, the former expands to 'In Real Life' and latter to 'Away From Keyboard'. They still doesn't tell much about what they mean, do they? Well, to make life easy for you, these abbreviations are used by the 'geeks' to differentiate the real life of a geek from the life that is spent on the internet. That's how IRL or In Real Life came into being. But the super geeks take offence from the term IRL. They say the life spent on the internet is "real" as well. So better use Away From Keyboard (AFK) if you want to mean what you meant! Fair enough. Isn't it?

I was watching the struggle of TPB to continue being into existence after the Hollywood cracked down on it. Oh, another abbreviation? That's 'The Pirate Bay', the famous file sharing platform online.

There is a documentary called TPB AFK, where you can see bits and pieces of the struggle put together. Among the many good things about this documentary - which can be easily find on any peer-to-peer file sharing site - is that it encourages you to share it online. Aptly so!

You also get to see the events of the lawsuits filed on TPB guys and how they deal with it. Watching the live reaction of a person who just found about his conviction in an ongoing case, is really something that you don't get to see often.

It's the fight between millions of dollars at stake verus the freedom of the internet. The ripples were also felt in India not so long ago when complete file sharing sites were banned because of the copyright infringement related to a movie;  which was later lifted when someone knocked sense into the Court ruling by suggesting to ban only the URLs in question and not on the complete websites.

Don't think of it just as a matter of geeks vs. governments. In the present time when freedom of expression is just a term relative to Government policies, internet is the last frontier where it is still being executed by the masses. It must be protected.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

New Facebook Graph Search - How does it look?

Facebook has recently launched Graph Search feature. Lot has been said about it and the good news is that now it is also available for the Indian users.

If you are still awaiting for that pop-up announcing the Graph Search feature on your Facebook account, have a look at the screen-grabs of how would it look like. :)

(Click on a image to view slideshow).

This is how Facebook informs you about the new and exciting feature.

An Example string, with the results from People, Friends and Photos

Simple phrases can be added to modify the results.

Facebook shows you the list of the friends as per the query entered.

Here are the default options that FB gives you with Graph Search!

Looks interesting! Isn't it? They say it will be revolution in the history of Search; we say, time will tell! :)

Friday, November 9, 2012

Of Suggested Posts on Facebook and Can we get rid of them?

Have you recently noticed any post(s) on your wall by some person or page you don't know and when you look closely it says "Suggested Post"! That's nothing but Facebook's new way of earning money!

Yes, Suggested Posts are actually advertisements which are displayed on your Facebook wall considering your past activities and likes (they say so). While you might find these useful at times, it feels like someone has stuck un-wanted bills on your personal space! Ads were there on the right side-bar already, how far you want to go Facebook!?

One of many "Suggested Post"

Now, the other question is can we get rid of them? Well, the answer is both yes and no, at the moment.

Click on the down arrow at the top right of post, select Hide

You get an option "Hide all Stories" from that page

Like normal posts, you can hide these "Suggested Posts" and once you hide it, you get an option to hide all the stories from that particular page/company/advertiser. But the catch here is that you will still get these so called Suggested Posts from other entities, which is equally ridiculous!

Of course, if you want to get rid of these posts entirely, something like Google+ might be the answer! Is Facebook really going downhill?

Need more info, check the links below:

Monday, July 16, 2012

SMS Limit Busted, Freedom Regained!

In September last year, TRAI came out with a highly illogical way to curb the unwanted SMS by introducing the 100 SMS/ day limit which was later increased to 200 SMS/day following the huge criticism from the telecom operators and public at large.

In an interesting and more logical development in this story, the Delhi High Court on 13th July 2012 has overruled TRAI’s order of limiting the maximum number of messages (SMS) that consumers can send per day. The petition was filed by an NGO, Telecom Watchdog.

The Delhi High Court decision gives a sense of relief and brings smiles on the faces of Indians for whom texting is most popular way of communicating with friends and relatives. But at the same time it raises questions on the policy decisions made by the Government and it’s regulators, especially those that have direct impact on the day-to-day lives of the citizens of this country.

This is not the only case where a Court has reversed a decision made by Government or it’s regulators. And that’s why question arises that what makes the Government take such decisions that are so impractical to implement and illogical to decide and which can be easily challenged in the courts. It’s well known that the Indian Judicial System has it’s own huge backlog and these unwanted cases and petitions increases it furthermore. And more than that, the time lag between Government taking a decision and Court ruling it out, puts a significant amount of unwanted burden on the citizens of India who suffer just because of highly un-thoughtful thinking of decisions makers.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

A Smart Phone Now Becomes A Card Swiping Device

Ever wish you could use your credit card when a delivery boy rings your door bell?
The day is not so far away....

Earlier this year there was a buzz about PayMate launching a smart phone app (PayPOS) designed for merchants (retail shop keeper, home delivery boys, small shops, provision stores etc.). Here, the end customer would be asked to feed his/her plastic card details into this app on merchant's smart phone for paying bills.

However, in a country obsessed with security concerns it would not be a good idea to key in your credit card number and security code into delivery boy's smart phone.

Contrarily, MTS has come up with a better solution to this. MTS has launched a dongle which has a card swiping section and could be attached to smart phone's 3.5mm audio jack. Actually, this is new to us but not for rest of the world. This technology of using smart phone as a card swiping device is known as mPOS.

mPOS a.k.a. mobile Point Of Sale consists of a smart phone, an smart app and a pluggable card swiping dongle.

There is a well known Android app known as Square Card Reader which is doing the same in US for quite some time now. Square's one square inch dongle when plugged into a smart phone becomes quite efficient in replacing the shoe sized card swiping machine at merchant's shop.

How is MTS mPOS going to work in India?

  • Merchants who want to give up their old and immobile card swiping machine must download the mPOS application on MTS smart phone. Then register themselves as merchants and provide necessary details.
  • Once merchant is registered he can plug-in the MTS mPOS dongle into 3.5 mm audio jack of MTS smart phone and start swiping customer's credit/debit cards for payments. 
  • A customer can cross check the amount on phone's screen and authorize the transaction by signing on phone's screen. 
  • For every successful/unsuccessful transaction a e-mail/sms will be sent to customer. This would complete the transaction.

MTS mPOS bundle (MTS MTag 3.1 CDMA smart phone, mPOS 3.5mm jack dongle & one year Data plan) is expected to cost around Rs 4000. MTS estimates monthly data charges to be between Rs 200 to Rs 300. This makes MTS mPOS a serious competitor to classical credit card swiping machine which costs almost Rs 15,000 for one time setup.

Currently MTS mPOS is in pilot phase. This service will be used by giant online retailer to allow its customer to pay through their credit card on home delivery.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Garbage Bin : A New Creative Hit

Video above is a great art by guys who run a Facebook page called "Garbage Bin"! Neat cartoons, nice little stories, the Garbage Bin started way back in December 2011 by Delhi Guys and now it is a craze among the Facebook crowd, many of which waits to get the daily dose of "gags"!

"Kaam na Dhandha, Bekaar Banda" is what their tagline says which re-iterates the fact that when talented people are idle, they are not wasting themselves, it's only matter of time when they come out with a miracle!!

These are early days for them and the future looks sparkling bright!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

REVAMPED: Train Running Information at

Hello Travelers!!

Have you checked the new beta version of Train Running Status website

The User Interface is made superb and it looks like nothing we experienced in past! Though, it does throws exceptions sometimes, since it is in beta stage, yet it is very nicely done and easy to use (for people at large)!  Kudos to everyone behind the effort! Below are few screen-shots (-cum- how to use guide) from the website (Hindi version).

First Time Screen

Enter the Search Criterion

Select the correct train

Select the date when the train started it's journey

Wait a while!

Have the information you want!

Isn't it cool! Hope that the actual travel also become as cool as this in future!