Friday, June 18, 2010

Set Up a Foolproof and Fireproof Automatic Backup Plan [How To]


backup.jpgThe sweet spot of a foolproof hard drive backup plan includes local backup to an external drive and off-site backup to the cloud. The problem: Most people don't do it. Here's a set-it-and-forget-it, step-by-step guide to backing up your data.

Photo by ArtMast.

You'll find no shortage of ways to backup your data—to other hard drives, to network drives, to external drives, to the cloud, to your neighbor's house, to a data center in Houston, etc.—but not everyone makes computer tinkering and data backup their part-time hobby. We understand the allure of patching together your own awesome and custom-fit backup system, but we also understand the allure of the "It Just Works" method. Whether you want to set up a data protection plan for yourself or for a less than computer-savvy relative (we'll be referring to this relative as Uncle Ted for the rest of the guide), Mozy provides a dead-simple backup plan for both Windows and Macs.

Step 1: Signing Up and Installing the Software

Set Up a Foolproof and Fireproof Automatic Backup Plan
Mozy comes in three flavors. MozyHome Free is a no-cost solution that uses the same software and syncing at MozyHome Unlimited but is limited to backing 2GB of data. If you've never used Mozy before and you're curious if this guide will really help you automate your backups with no fuss or headaches, you should really sign up for a free account and give it a try. At the end of the day, we'd strongly recommend paying for MozyHome Unlimited. It's $4.95 per month (or $55 per year) for unlimited backup on home computers, both locally and to Mozy's servers (where privacy hounds will be happy to know the backups are sent completely encrypted).

First, head over to Mozy and sign up for an account. After you've signed up, grab a copy of MozyHome. Run the installer, and when you've finished, the setup menu will automatically pop up. This is a great time to plug in an external hard drive if you want to take advantage of the Mozy's secondary backup features—which you do, so plug the drive in now! (Note: Make sure your external hard drive is at least as big as the drives you're backup up so you don't run into any problems with your data pool exceeding the size of the backup media.)

Step 2: Setting Up Mozy

Set Up a Foolproof and Fireproof Automatic Backup Plan
Mozy is pretty well set up out of the box but it does require a little tweaking to take advantage of all the options. The screenshot above shows you the initial screen you see after Mozy finishes installing. By default it scans your system and adds things like My Documents, videos, photos, contacts, and browser bookmarks to your backup set. To get finer control over individual folders and files move one tab over to "File System" and browse your entire computer like so:

Set Up a Foolproof and Fireproof Automatic Backup Plan

In the "File System" menu you can check individual folders and files to get more granular control over exactly which items Mozy will backup. You can decide whether you want Mozy to back up your entire drive, or if you just want to pick and choose what needs backed up.

Once you've selected which files you want backed up, it's time to customize how Mozy operates. Hop over to the "Options" tab. Let's work our way through all the settings and get things tweaked just the way we want. First, the General options.

Set Up a Foolproof and Fireproof Automatic Backup Plan

General Settings: If you're setting things up for yourself and you want a lot of feedback on what gets backed up and when, then you'll want to check "Show backup status icon on files" and crank down the "Alert me that a backup hasn't happened in this many days." variable to 1 or 2 days. If you're setting it up for Uncle Ted you'll want to leave the icons off and the alert set for a higher number of days to cut down on the number of tech-support calls you get. (Note: If you have the notifications shut off, you should occasionally check to make sure it's backing up with out any problems.)

Set Up a Foolproof and Fireproof Automatic Backup Plan

Scheduling: Whether you opt for automatic backups or scheduled backups depends largely on whether or not your computer is on 24/7 or not. You've likely got a lot of data to backup the off the bat, so to begin with it's wise to turn on scheduled backups and set your computer to upload your data all night long every night until you've synced your system to the Mozy servers. This can take days depending on how big your drive is, but it's worth it. (The local backup should take much less time.) Once Mozy finishes the initial online backup, you may want to switch to automatic backups for more frequent incremental backups.

If you're setting things up for Uncle Ted, you can keep the backup frequency low. For power users that do a lot of work all day on the computer and frequent file editing, it's best to tweak the number of daily backups to coincide with how often you take breaks from the computer so backups are frequent and timely.

Laptop users will want to switch the last setting, "Start automatic backups when the computer is running on battery power" depending on where they are in the process of backing up their data. Early on when you're uploading tons of data for extended periods of time, it's best to set Mozy to not backup when you're on battery power in order to conserve your battery when you're away from an outlet. Later, when your backups are small and incremental, it's probably fine to let Mozy backup while on the battery.

Set Up a Foolproof and Fireproof Automatic Backup Plan

Performance: You can throttle your bandwidth to make room for other applications and you can adjust the backup speed to emphasize faster computer performance or faster backup. If you throttle at all, definitely only throttle during the time your home network is being used for things where latency matters like video games, web browsing, and communication tools like Skype. As far as the "Backup Speed" setting go, I've always just slammed the slider all the way over to "Quicker Backups". If you have an older PC and you notice that Mozy is really chewing up the cycles you can adjust it to the left until your system seems less sluggish. Again, I've always put the emphasis on quicker backups without any problems.

Set Up a Foolproof and Fireproof Automatic Backup Plan

Local Backup: Local backup is one of the best new featured in Mozy. When you enable local backup Mozy will simultaneously backup to an external hard drive and the Mozy servers so you always have a copy of the data on your actual computer, a copy on an external drive right beside your computer, and then a copy on the Mozy servers in the cloud. It's a really ideal setup especially for those times that you want to restore a large file from the Mozy servers but you don't want to wait.

As awesome as the addition of local backup is to Mozy you should be aware of one caveat. If you delete a file on your computer the Mozy servers will retain that file for 30 days in case you want to retrieve it. The file will be dropped from the local backup during the next file sync. It seems like an oversight—or a purposely over-dependence on the Mozy servers—but it's something we'd love to see corrected so that the delay on the external drive matches the delay on the Mozy servers.

Set Up a Foolproof and Fireproof Automatic Backup Plan

Advanced Settings: The advanced settings allow you to tweak things like whether or not Mozy will appear as a drive in My Computer—so you can browse your file backups like you would browse a regular drive. If you think having an extra drive would be too confusing for Uncle Ted you can uncheck it. If you're going for minimal user interaction and/or annoyance you should also uncheck "Show status when backup successfully completes." I happen to like seeing when Mozy is doing its thing, but it's easy enough to run it silently if you desire.

When you're done configuring, click "OK" at the bottom to get started with your first backup.

Set Up a Foolproof and Fireproof Automatic Backup Plan

Note: For the sake of getting a speedy screenshot on our test machine, we shrunk the size of our backup set down to the barebones. If you're uploading a whole hard drive's worth of photos, videos, and projects, be patient! It'll take quite a while to upload it all to Mozy's servers.

There When You Need It: Restoring Your Files

Once Mozy starts humming along—and assuming nothing catastrophic happens in the near future—that's the last you'll see of Mozy in your regular computing. It works in the background, the files get backed up, and you go on about your life knowing that your digital life isn't hovering on the brink of a horrible hard drive catastrophe.

If your hard drive does crash or you delete a file here or there that needs restoring, you can access your files in several different ways. In the following screenshots and examples we're still on a machine running Mozy that hasn't suffered a catastrophic crash, but even if it had we could simply fire up a new hard drive and install Mozy to start grabbing our files.

The easiest way to get at the files is to simply use the Restore tab in the Mozy software. There you'll find a directory structure of all the files you have backed up and Mozy will take care of the logistics of putting them back where they belong.

Set Up a Foolproof and Fireproof Automatic Backup Plan

A few check marks and a click of the "Restore Files" button and you're back in business. Alternately you can browse your external hard drive backup. The files are organized on the external drive in the same folder structure they are on your actual drives.

Set Up a Foolproof and Fireproof Automatic Backup Plan

This is extremely convenient compared to some of the backup software tools on the market that package your backups in archive files. Sure the compression might save a little space but it's a hassle to get back at the files when you need them in a pinch. Just as easily as you can browse the external hard drive you can also, through My Computer, browse your server-based backups on the Mozy servers.

Set Up a Foolproof and Fireproof Automatic Backup Plan

The only difference is you're only seeing the file headers and not the actual files so when it's time to drag and drop that big file from the server-based file browser you'll be dealing with the limitations of your broadband connection instead of your USB drive.

You can also, less conveniently than just hopping over to your external drive or server folders, log into the Mozy web site and restore files through the web-based interface.

Set Up a Foolproof and Fireproof Automatic Backup Plan


Now that you're all set up, you can relax in the knowledge that it would take a catastrophic fire or hard drive failure—both at your home and Mozy's redundant server farm—for your data to go missing. Between your local data, your local backup copy, and your cloud-based copy, you'd either have to be terribly unlucky or the NSA is out to get you before you lost your data.

Have a tip, trick, or tweak to share for achieving dead-simple backups with a minimum of fuss? Let's hear about it in the comments.

Jason Fitzpatrick is a writer at Lifehacker and a missionary of the gospel of Good Backup Practices and he urges you to backup daily for a long and stress-free life.


Create and Share Personalized Travel Guides at [Travel]


Create and Share Personalized Travel Guides at Stay.comYou can find travel guides and tips online, you can buy travel guides in bookstores, but offers you the chance to not only browse the travel guides of others but create and share your own. makes it easy to browse guides created by others and mix together your own guides. If you're not interested in making a guide you can find guides of all stripe for various major cities. Want to soak in the nightlife in Athens? Tour museums in London? Take a kid-friendly vacation in San Fransisco? You'll find guides like that and more.

If you've been busy traveling or want to promote fun things to do in your hometown you can easily build a guide. has tons of landmarks, restaurants, and other attractions already cataloged, it's easy to mix them together complete with shared tips, tricks, and a map to help people get around. Check out the guides at the link below and share your favorites in the comments.

Have a favorite travel site or trick for getting a tour-guide-quality look at a foreign town without hiring a tour guide? Let's hear all about it.


How to Enable Extension Syncing in Chrome (AKA: The Holy Grail of Browser Sync Is Here) [Syncing]


chrome-sync-extensions.pngLong have we searched for an easy way to sync browser extensions across multiple machines, and for Chrome users that day has finally come. If you're running the Dev channel, here's how you can easily enable extension syncing.

Google Chrome has had bookmark, preference, and theme syncing for awhile, but today's Dev channel update introduced the most heavily anticipated syncing feature to the list: extension syncing. Just like your bookmarks or preferences, after enabling extension syncing, any copy of Chrome on which you are logged into your Google Account will have the same extensions as your other machines—so from now on, you only have to download, install, and configure them once. (Or at least in theory; as this is the dev channel, you can expect that you might encounter a bug or three.)

How to Enable Extension Syncing in Chrome (AKA: The Holy Grail of Browser Sync Is Here)

To enable the feature, download the dev build (if you haven't already) and right click on its shortcut. Choose "Properties" and in the target box, add —enable-sync-extensions to the end of the line (outside of the quotes). From now on, using that shortcut to launch Chrome will have extension syncing enabled. (We're especially eager to see it enabled by default down the road.) Launching Chrome with a command line switch is a bit more complicated on Mac, but the folks over at MacOSXHints have created a handy script that will launch Chrome with extra features enabled without having to do it through the Terminal every time. Once you've launched Chrome, you can enable extensions by clicking on the wrench icon and going to "set up sync" in the menu. The new build also includes some bug fixes and other features, so hit the link to see the full changelog.

Dev Channel Update [Google Chrome Releases via #tips]


Vodburner Records and Edits Skype Video Chats [Downloads]


Vodburner Records and Edits Skype Video ChatsWindows only: Vodburner is an application that will record your Skype video chats and conferences, with the capability to edit the recorded video. The program saves those important business teleconferences or personal conversations with friends for future reference.

If the other party of the Skype conversation does not have Vodburner installed, Vodburner will watermark the video when you record the video chat (unless you pay to upgrade the software). If both parties have it installed, Vodburner does not leave a watermark. As a courtesy, upon each call, Vodburner will ask if you want to alert the other person that they are being recorded.

Vodburner Records and Edits Skype Video Chats

Vodburner also has limited and basic video editing features, including basic transitions, so if that's all you want to do, there's no need to go into a separate video editing program. Either way, these six popular video-editing applications can probably help if you are looking for more editing functionality. Vodburner is a free download for Windows only.


Remains of the Day: Share Any Google Doc with a Private Link [For What It's Worth]


Google Docs adds some extra new sharing and privacy options, in Japan you can search what's for dinner with Google Recipe Search, and Google sneaks a PDF reader into Chrome.

  • Sharing in Google Docs just got easier
    Sharing gets easier in Google Docs, as documents get increased privacy options. There's now an option to collaborate via a shareable link, whose URL can be reset. [The Official Google Docs Blog]
  • Google Recipe Search
    Google Japan has Google Recipe Search, which searches and filters food recipes, based on search terms, calories, preparation time. Why isn't this feature available here? [Yongfook]
  • Huge Security Flaw Makes VPNs Useless for BitTorrent
    Many people choose to hide their IP address through a VPN. Because of a BitTorrent security flaw, the IP addresses of those who use IPv6 in conjunction with a PPTP-based VPN can still be found. [TorrentFreak]
  • Google sneaks internal PDF reader into Chrome dev channel release
    An internal PDF plug-in has been found in the Google Chrome developer channel. It's limited in functionality so far, but it's good news for eventually bringing native support for displaying documents seamlessly. [Download Squad]
  • Android Still Spread Out Over Three Different Versions
    Even though the Android 2.1 software has been released for half a year, half of all Android devices are still running Android 1.6 and below. [Mashable]
  • One Loo or Two? Google Maps Adds Properties in U.K.
    This feature has been available in the United States since last year, but the United Kingdom will now have the ability to search for property listings in Google Maps. [ReadWriteWeb]


How to Set Up OpenID on Your Own Domain [How To]


open-id-bp-2.jpgOpenID is an open standard for logging onto various web services with a single digital identity. The tool puts your online identity back in your hands—and as it turns out, OpenID on your own domain is surprisingly easy.

For some reason I was under the mistaken impression that setting up an OpenID on my own domain,, would be a big hassle: that I'd have to host my own OpenID server software and that it would take all sorts of installation and maintenance BS to do so. I feel strongly about owning my identity online, mapping it to my nameplate domain, and actively choosing an authorizing party instead of just accepting the sign-in service du jour like Facebook, Twitter, Yahoo, or Google.

Still, I never got set up with OpenID on because my perceived hassle factor was daunting. Instead, I used for my OpenID and put the domain setup on my "someday I have to do that" list. It meant that my OpenID was instead of my own domain. Idproxy is a great service and I thank them for getting me started with OpenID; but still, I want my OpenID URL to be a domain name I own and control.

Turns out I was dead wrong about the hassle. Setting up OpenID capabilities on your own domain name is a two-lines-of-HTML affair, and it's finally done. (Thanks to Chris Messina for bringing me into the year 2006.) If you're interested in doing the same, here's what to know.

First, Google Profiles (and, it turns out, and ClaimID and a bunch of other OpenID providers) can work with your domain name, so all I have to do is add a few <link rel> tags to your HTML to get things working. Second, you can specify multiple OpenID providers, so if was down or Google Profiles was down, you can have a provider fallback. Sweet. Now, in the <head> tags of you will find the following:

 <link rel="openid2.provider" href="" > <link rel="openid2.local_id" href="" > 

That sets Google Profiles as the authorizing party for my OpenID, but my OpenID URL is You can see my new OpenID in action right here; I signed into this very site with my new OpenID and posted a comment.

I'm not sure yet how to set Idproxy as my "fallback" provider just yet; if you know how to do that, post it up in the comments.

Thanks to the folks in this Stack Overflow thread for clearing up how to use Google Profiles as an OpenID provider and to Chris for a great discussion of OpenID, OAuth, and verifying identity on the web.

Smarterware is Lifehacker editor emeritus Gina Trapani's new home away from 'hacker. To get all of the latest from Smarterware, be sure to subscribe to the Smarterware RSS feed.


Imagine Toshiba's 128GB NAND Flash Memory In Your Next Phone [Memory]


Imagine Toshiba's 128GB NAND Flash Memory In Your Next PhoneThey invented flash memory, so it's only fitting that Toshiba has now produced another world first for NAND memory: the first with 128GB of capacity. Just think what media you could store on your phone with that module.

It squishes 16 64Gb of NAND chips together, and should be shipping out to manufacturers this September. Will it be seen in phones anytime soon? iPods, even? [Toshiba via CrunchGear]


Japan's Space-Surfing Solar Sail Photographed For First Time [Space]


Japan's Space-Surfing Solar Sail Photographed For First TimeGood news for the Little Japanese Solar Sail That Could, as the first images of the solar sail spread out in full deployment have been snapped. All is going according to plan, says the space agency, and "flying" looks possible.

Just last week the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency unfurled the solar sail in space, but it now needs to make tracks through space to prove that solar-powered travel is indeed possible. It works by reflecting solar radiation back at the sun, propelling (theoretically) the sail through space. IKAROS has been given five months to prove its worth in space, as it heads towards the planet Venus (for a bit of luuuurve, naturally). [JAXA via DiscoveryNews]


Droid 2: First Impressions [Motorola]


Droid 2: First ImpressionsGizmodo reader Zack recently had a chance to play with Verizon's next offering, the Motorola Droid 2. He sent us his impressions, some details about the specs, and a few extra pictures.

Zack wrote:

I am a summer intern at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (NASA) this summer and today there was a tech show on the lab. There were a lot of cool new technologies along with booths for companies like Microsoft, Apple, Sprint, and Verizon.

I went over to the Verizon booth and was surprised to see a curious-looking phone next to regulars like Blackberries and the Droid Incredible. I picked up the phone and once I looked at it more closely I realized it was the Droid 2. I asked the representatives and they told me that they weren't sure exactly what the name was going to be, but that it was indeed the successor to the original Motorola Droid.

It felt really nice in my hand. It seems smoother than the original Droid. A lot more curves and less sharp edges. Held next to my original Droid, it seems exactly the same size The headphone jack, volume buttons, power/sleep button, and the Micro-USB port were all in the same place and pretty much exactly like the original. The camera button is also in the same place, but smaller and the same color as the volume buttons.

The camera on the back was a 5.0 megapixel, so I don't know why it isn't any better than the original Droid's. The camera was definitely faster though. It took a picture very quickly compared to the original. The whole device was a dark crome-like color instead of the original Droid's black. The soft keys were touch-sensitive at the bottom and were in a different order than on the original phone. It still had the Motorola and Verizon logos, as well as the "with Google."

Opening it up, the keyboard is definitely wider and has blue coloring instead of the gold from the original. I didn't see any gold on the entire thing actually. (No more Batman similarities!) I was happy to see that the directional pad was changed so that you have the four arrows—similar to a real computer keyboard. It's not easy to tell in the pictures, but it was nice that there was no lip on the right side when the phone was open. That combined with the wider keyboard made it easier to type on the device. My favorite part about the keyboard was the button for voice commands on the lower left. I have always wanted that on my Droid, so I'm glad to see it on the new one.

From what I have seen of the Droid X and the Ninjablur thing, this device was running the same skin on top of Android 2.1. When I asked about the software, the Verizon representatives told me that it most probably wouldn't be coming with that on it and would probably have Froyo (Android 2.2) plain (without any skin). She said that if it does come out with Android 2.1, it will gt updated very quickly.

The device was running 2.1 and it had 8GB of internal memory as well as an 8GB micro-SD card. The model number says A955 and on the bottom of the device it said "G4DR 4722," but I believe this is just because it is a demo device. The representative did tell me that it had a 1 Ghz processor, but she didnt say what kind.

The representative wouldn't tell me when it will be released, but she said in the next few weeks.

Zack's observations and impressions match what we've heard about the Droid 2 so far, but we'll get to get our own hands on the device soon.


OnLive Streaming Game Service Launches, First Year Free [Gaming]


OnLive Streaming Game Service Launches, First Year FreeThe OnLive service which renders console and PC games in the cloud and then streams them to your PC or Mac has gone live today. And you can get the first year of OnLive membership for free.

Note that what you're getting for free is the OnLive membership—which is normally $4.95/month—and not the games. Prices for those will vary, but here are some of the titles you can look forward to:

Assassin's Creed 2, Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands and Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Conviction from Ubisoft; Mass Effect 2 and Dragon Age: Origins from Electronic Arts; Batman: Arkham Asylum and Just Cause 2 from Square Enix; Borderlands, NBA 2K10 and MLB 2K10 from Take Two; Red Faction: Guerilla from THQ; Fear 2: Project Origin from Warner Bros. Interactive Games; and DiRT 2 from Codemasters along with other great games from publishers, both large and small, representing a wide range of genres.

You can read about what we thought about the service and games here first if you're not too eager to sign up just yet. [OnLiveThanks, Jess!]


HTC Aria review


It's sort of hard to believe, but AT&T finally has an Android phone worth paying attention to. Mind you, the AT&T compatible Nexus One is easily the best Googlephone on America's largest GSM operator, but this is the first one that the company has bothered to brand and sell on a subsidized plan within its own stores. Pundits could argue the reasons why forever, but considering that the carrier's doing all it can just to keep up with the demand for iPhones, it's hard to imagine that AT&T has been longing to pursue Android with reckless abandon. Believe it or not, it's been over 1.5 years since T-Mobile gave the world the first taste of a mobile OS that would soon rival (and surpass) the other options already on the table, but outside of the forgettable Backflip (and the nowhere-to-be-found Aero), there's been no Android to speak of on AT&T. HTC has somehow managed to break down the blue and orange walls, piercing the heart of a hardened operator and squeezing a delightful mid-range Android smartphone into a lineup that's about to be monumentally overshadowed by the iPhone 4. So, is the HTC Aria worth the $129.99 that you'll be forced to pay on a 2-year agreement when it ships on June 20th? Read on to find out.

Continue reading HTC Aria review

HTC Aria review ! original ly appeared on Engadget Mobile on Thu, 17 Jun 2010 11:04:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Samsung Captivate is AT&T's version of the Galaxy S, launching 'in the coming months'


So much for the "AT&T refuses to release high-end Android devices" conspiracy theory, eh? T-Mobile had been widely pegged as Samsung's launch partner for the Galaxy S in the States, but AT&T stole its thunder this morning by announcing the Captivate featuring a 4-inch Super AMOLED display, Android 2.1, 7.2Mbps HSPA, and a 1GHz Hummingbird processor. If it sounds more or less like the European Galaxy S, well, your intuitions are spot-on -- AT&T actually describes the Captivate as "a Galaxy S smartphone." As for media, you can expect a 5 megapixel camera with 720p recording, a 3.5mm headphone jack, and 16GB of onboard storage combined with support for external storage for a total of up to 32GB; you also have 802.11n WiFi and a variety of built-in apps (some of which you'll want, others you won't) like Swype and AT&T Navigator. Unfortunately, this is a little while out yet -- AT&T is only saying that it'll launch "in the coming months" for an undisclosed price -- but we're at least stoked that AT&T's finally fully entrenched in the Android superphone game. Follow the break for the full press release.

Continue reading Samsung Captivate is AT&T's version of the Galaxy S, launching 'in the coming months'

Samsung Captivate is AT&T's version of the Galaxy S, launching 'in the coming months' originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 17 Jun 2010 12:01:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Check out our Dell Streak hub!


This one's been around quite a long time, but we've finally managed to cobble together just about all the knowledge we could dig up about the Dell Streak into one delicious, beautiful hub. Make sure you check it out.

Check out our Dell Streak hub! originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 17 Jun 2010 12:21:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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NVIDIA GeForce GTX 480M reviewed: fastest mobile GPU to date


It's one thing to have a product called the world's fastest on paper, but it's another thing entirely to have the benchmarks confirm it. NVIDIA's GeForce GTX 480M has been swooned over for months now, but it just recently hit the hardcore review sites in a big way. Frankly, there's not a whole lot to say about the thing at this point: it's simply the fastest mobile GPU to date, with Hot Hardware finding it to be "significantly faster in nearly all gaming benchmarks," with just one title showing the Mobility Radeon HD 5870 as the champ by only a few frames. If you've been searching for the fastest mobile GPU in town, you're wasting your time looking any harder; 'course, all of that power consumes an insane level of energy, so true road warriors will certainly want to look elsewhere. Critics pointed out that energy consumption and excess heat were real issues, though both of those are easily overlooked when you're able to take a beastly laptop to a LAN party rather than your desktop. Give those links below a visit if you still need proof.

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 480M reviewed: fastest mobile GPU to date originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 17 Jun 2010 13:03:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Toshiba busts out the Mini NB250 netbook, drops price on NB305


Toshiba's just not stopping with the laptops this week, and has now outed the 10.1-inch Mini NB250 netbook, while also refreshing the Mini NB305 with an Intel Atom N455 processor. The new Mini NB250 boasts a typical 1,024 x 600 resolution backlit LED, a 1.66GHz Intel Atom N455 CPU, integrated GMA 3150 graphics, 1GB of DDR3 RAM, and a 250GB hard drive. It's also packing three USB ports, a multicard reader and a webcam, plus 802.11 b/g/n wireless, Ethernet and Bluetooth. It comes with a three-cell battery standard, but there's an optional six-cell which will purportedly get you around eight and a half hours of life. The NB250 doesn't have a nicely coated chiclet keyboard like the Mini NB305, but for $299 we won't complain. Truthfully, the NB305 continues to be our fave netbook, especially now that Tosh has dropped the price down to $379. We've got some hands-on shots below and the full press release after the break.

Continue reading Toshiba busts out the Mini NB250 netbook, drops price on NB305

Toshiba busts out the Mini NB250 netbook, drops price on NB305 originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 17 Jun 2010 14:20:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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iPhone 4 to have 512MB of RAM, double the 3GS and iPad?


Apple has traditionally been -- how shall we put it -- cagey with revealing memory and CPU specifics of its mobile devices, but MacRumors is today reporting its discovery that the fourth-gen iPhone's RAM apportionment will be a very healthy 512MB. We've heard similar rumblings from reliable sources of our own. What it means is that iPhone 4 users can look forward to not only the same processor (though potentially at a lower speed) as their iPad compatriots, but also double the memory allowance. Of course, this will hardly be the first handset to offer half a gig for the OS to dance inside, but at least Apple's keeping up with the times. Wouldn't wanna disappoint all those pre-orderers now, would we?

iPhone 4 to have 512MB of RAM, double the 3GS and iPad? originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 17 Jun 2010 15:54:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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HTC Legend with North American 3G now available unlocked


Sure, the Desire's coming to a handful of regional American carriers later this year, but what if you want the smaller, sleeker, more aluminum-clad Legend? Well, there aren't any carrier-branded options in the States -- but it seems that a number of unlocked units with US 3G bands are starting to ooze out of the cracks. Negri Electronics has an 850 / 1900MHz 3G Legend in its store for a shade under $500, which means you're not getting much of a discount over the more powerful 850 / 1900MHz version of the Nexus One -- but you are getting a pretty sweet unibody shell and an optical d-pad. Any takers?

HTC Legend with North American 3G now available unlocked originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 17 Jun 2010 18:29:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Check out our NVIDIA Optimus hub!


If you're really, really into NVIDIA's Optimus switchable graphics (like some people around here) then you'll certainly want to hit up our brand new hub, which features all the products we've reviewed and all the things we know about our favorite topic.

Check out our NVIDIA Optimus hub! originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 17 Jun 2010 20:05:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Droid 2 (or whatever it's called) for Verizon breaks cover once again


Nothing new here, but at this point, Motorola's delicious duo of fresh Android phones for Verizon is leaking like... well, like a leaky faucet, we suppose. We've already got the full scoop on the keyboardless 4.3-inch Droid X -- a beast ready to take on sworn enemies from HTC like the EVO 4G and the Droid Incredible -- and we've seen plenty of details on the so-called Droid 2, too. The latter appears destined to replace the original Droid with a better keyboard layout and ever-so-gently refined ergonomics, but the latest leak from a Gizmodo tipster confirms that the cam's still 5 megapixels and it's currently running Android 2.1 atop Moto's new-look Blur (interestingly, the "Droid 2" name couldn't be confirmed). Apparently it's set for release in the "next few weeks," which would line up with rumors we've heard in the past of a launch windows somewhere between July and August -- so here's the real question: X or 2?

Droid 2 (or whatever it's called) for Verizon breaks cover once again originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 17 Jun 2010 23:42:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Acer comes clean with new Aspire One availability and pricing


We've pretty much known about all of these Acer netbooks that are officially being announced today, but their very tempting price tags are definitely new to us. First up is the 11.6-inch Aspire One 721 and 10.1-inch 521, both of which we checked out last month. While the duo are powered by the same AMD Athlon II Neo K125 processors and ATI Radeon HD 4225 graphics, the 721 will start at $429.99 while the 521 at $349.99. And let's not forget that, unlike Intel Atom powered netbooks, they sport HDMI ports and claim to be "HD capable." Speaking of Intel netbooks, Acer's got those in store too -- the 10-inch, Atom powered Aspire One D260 and 533 will also be available later this month. The D620 packs an Atom N450 processor, 1GB of RAM and a three-cell battery for $298. On the flip side, the $330 Aspire One 533 has a slightly faster N475 processor, a 250GB hard drive and a six-cell battery. Enticing, right? The full press release is after the break, but hopefully we'll be able to assist you in choosing one of these with some full reviews soon.

Continue reading Acer comes clean with new Aspire One availability and pricing

Acer comes clean with new Aspire One availability and pricing originally appeared on Engadget on Fri, 18 Jun 2010 00:01:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Sunday, June 13, 2010

Five Best Places to Set Up Shop Online [Hive Five]


Five Best Places to Set Up Shop OnlineWhether you make stuff as a weekend hobby or you're set on making a business out of selling your wares, it's never been easier to set up shop and sell things online. These five sites are a great place to start.

Photo by jhall.

Earlier this week we asked you to share your favorite site for setting up shop online. Now we're back with the results and an overview of the five best places to establish a web-based shop and build your online presence.

Big Cartel (Web-Based, Basic: Free/Premium: From $9.99 per month)

Five Best Places to Set Up Shop Online
Big Cartel is an easy-to-use store building and shopping cart service marketed towards artists. They've designed their setup and control panel system with the attitude that you'd rather be creating stuff and working on your business instead of tinkering with your web site. The pricing structure at Big Cartel makes it easy to test the waters without an up front cost. You can set up a storefront and list up to 5 products with basic customization for free. From there they have the Platinum plan for $9.99/month and the Diamond plan for $19.99/month offering an increase in volume of products and level of customization. Big Cartel doesn't take a percentage of your sales with any sort of fees. Check out their example page to see the variety of designs their users are using—the shot above is from the storefront of Backseat Vintage.

Shopify (Web-Based, Basic: $24 per month /Professional: From $59 per month)

Five Best Places to Set Up Shop Online
Shopify is a scalable storefront and shopping-cart system that can handle everything from a store with 100 products with the $24 per month basic package to a whopping 50,000 with the $699 per month Premier package (don't worry there are three budget-friendlier options between those two). The biggest difference between Shopify is completely customizable with full HTML and CSS tweaking, so while you can just grab one of their polished templates and get started, you can also edit that template or start from scratch to get the exact look you want. Transaction fees at Shopify range from 2.0%-0.5% and drop off to 0% if you've upgraded all the way up the chain to Premier. Check out their examples page to see examples ranging from corporate shops to single-owner stores—the screenshot above is from the storefront of Sugar Baking.

Self-Hosted (Web-Based, Variable Cost)

Five Best Places to Set Up Shop Online
Lifehacker readers tend to be a DIY/roll-your-sleeves-up crowd, so it's no surprise that various self-hosted shopping cart systems got nods in the nomination process. With self-hosted carts you need to have a web server and the know how to install third-party tools on it. If you have those two things you can check out popular self-hosted shopping cart systems like Zen Cart, Magneto, and XCart among others. You can check out this enormous set of charts and comparisons courtesy of Wikipedia to really get an in-depth look at do-it-yourself shopping cart software. Photo by pastaboy sleeps.

Etsy (Web-Based, $0.20 per item listing)

Five Best Places to Set Up Shop Online
Etsy is a community marketplace focused on handmade and vintage goods as well as crafting supplies—you can find yarn for a sweater, handmade sweaters, vintage 1960s era sweaters, but no machine-spun sweaters from factories. The site is strongly geared towards crafters, artists, and DIYers. Store setup is a zero coding affair, so whether you specialize in handmade Transformers cosplay masks or terrariums, you don't have to specialize in web-design to get started. Signing up for Etsy and setting up your store is free, you pay a $0.20 listing fee to list your product for four months and then a 3.5% transaction fee when the item sells; no other costs are incurred using the Etsy shopping cart system.
Check out the Editor's Picks page to see examples of stores and products. The screenshot above is of WarmCountryMeadows, an Etsy store specializing in moss terrariums.

Sell Simply (Web-Based, $1 per item)

Five Best Places to Set Up Shop OnlineSell Simply occupies the ultra-simplicity niche in this week's Hive Five—much like TinyChat did in the Best Web-Based Conferencing Tools Hive Five. If you want to have a web presence to sell things, you want to do it simply, and you want to do it with tools you already use, Sell Simply is a great choice. Sell Simply let's you list items via Twitter and have them appear on Sell Simply. The only cost associated with Sell Simply is s $1 listing fee. Everything else is handled by PayPal. If you're already using social media to promote yourself and you want to sell things easily and on a small scale, Sell Simply makes it dead simple and hassle free. The sample site in the screenshot above is Lisateso's, a wedding and portrait photographer.

Now that you've had a chance to look over the top contender's, it's time to vote for your favorite:

Which Is The Best Place to Set Up Shop Online?online survey

Have a favorite tool that didn't get the spotlight here or want to offer more insight into one of the tools above? Sound off about it in the comments. Have an idea for the next Hive Five? Shoot us an email at with "Hive Five" in the subject line and we'll see what we can do.