Turning an SD Card into Virtual Hard Drive

Cool! I just learned how to turn an sd card that was inserted into my tablet, into a second virtual hard drive! Why would I do that? So I can use it to upgrade and run windows 10 on it maybe. I didn’t have enough space on the hard drive in it to do the upgrade. I haven’t got that far yet, but I got the how-to to create the VHD from here…being nerdy again.

Super Nintendo – How to play the SNES on your PC!

How to play Super Nintendo games on your PC!

Do you miss playing those old Super Nintendo games? My wife and I use to have a Super Nintendo game system console (SNES). We bought it a long time ago when we were dating and engaged, and kept it at my house to play on those evenings when we really couldn’t afford to go out somewhere. Sometimes, it was just as much fun as going out.

We liked to play Super Mario Kart, Super Mario World, Donkey Kong Country, and a few other games together, and then one I played by myself was Tecmo Super Bowl (she didn’t care for the sports games). But I guess we wore the thing out, because one day it just stopped working. So we trashed it but we kept the games and still have them somewhere in a box in our storage. I don’t know why we kept them, because you couldn’t play them without a console. I think I planned to buy another console, but I think by the time I wanted to, they stopped making new ones, and the only ones you could get were at the pawn shops and garage sales. But, good luck on getting one that still worked in good shape. I have seen where you can buy a console on Amazon or ebay! And yes, you can now download and play them on the Nintendo Wii and Wii U! And also on a PC!

To play them on a PC though you will need an emulator program and some ROMS, downloaded to your computer. I am not going to go into details on how all that works, but in a nut shell, an emulator and a ROM is the software version of the game console and game, that will run on your PC. There are several SNES emulators online you can download and install that work well. You can do a google search for Super Nintendo Emulators and a bunch of sites will pop up. But be careful, there are some sites with downloads that can contain viruses, and spyware. Be sure and use your antivirus to scan the file 1st before opening or installing. WARNING!!! There is a legal gray area with the downloading and playing of ROMS. Many sites say it’s legal if you already own the game cartridge.

super nintendoI actually found a Super Nintendo app that is easy to install and use on the google chrome webstore that will run the ROMS, called snes9x. You then have to download the ROMS to your computer and extract them from a zipped file, for them to work in the app. Most newer operating systems for Windows (like Windows 7, 8, 8.1, 10), Mac and even Ubuntu (and it’s many Linux flavors), have programs built in, that will extract the zipped archive file, by right clicking on the file and choosing “extract” in the list. If for some reason your Windows PC or Mac doesn’t have the program installed, google Winzip or 7-Zip (I recommend 7-zip) and install it. For Ubuntu, you can probably find one through the software center. But all the newer updated versions usually already an archive manager installed. But, you will need the Chrome browser with flash or other browser with flash, to run the chrome app.

super nintendo

Then once you have installed the snes8x app, launch it, then click “choose file” at the top and find your unzipped ROM file where you extracted it on your computer, to load it and play the game. If you did it right, you should see the game start up. You can use the keyboard, or plug in a USB game pad to your computer, to move around in the game (there is a key map below the output screen). I actually created a separate folder in my downloads folder to extract the ROMS to, so they would be easy to find.

Anyway! Enjoy! It’s a fun way to pass the time, just don’t do it while cooking or you will burn the food, like I did the other night!

What is a Domain Name?

Do you have a personal blog, or home business website with a really long web address? Would you like to shorten it and maybe make it easier for others to remember and type in the address bar? Also to make it easier to advertise, fit on your business cards, car decals, documents, stickers and other promotional materials? Then you need your own custom domain name!

What is a domain name?

domain nameA domain name is a custom web address that can be used to represent the content of your website, business and/or yourself. That when typed into the address bar, forwards or goes to your website,  that has the really long address. You can also set it up to mask the really long address and just show the custom one (depending on the setup of the business website)!

For example: johnsbusines.shoppingcart.webaddress.com, could possibly be johnswebsite.com

There are several domain name registrars to get one from, and it’s not expensive (as low as *99¢ here) or real hard to set up! And, if you need help, you can contact me. I have probably registered over 100 domains and have been the tech admin for other business accounts.

1st you will need to think up a custom name you would like to use, that is short and to the point and maybe represents what your website is about!

2nd, go to the registrars website and look for a text entry box where you can do a domain name search, to see if your custom domain name idea is available.

3rd, if it’s available, register your domain.

You can register your domain for 1 year or longer! Be careful to watch for the multi-year option (the default is usually set for 2 to 5 years) because you may only want to register it for just a year to try it out, and not have to pay up front for more years than 1. Also, watch for add on sales for things you don’t need, in the shopping cart. Registering it “private” is a good idea but optional and costs extra! But helps keep the information you registered the domain with, like email and phone numbers, away from 3rd party access that will send you spam calls and emails.

custom emailAlso, most domain registrations offer a custom email address to go with your new custom domain, and can be setup to forward to your regularly used email account. You could use something like support@mywebsite.com, or make it more personal with your 1st name.

Then once you have it registered, you can forward it to your websites address. Sometimes it takes a couple hrs for the domain settings to be available after you register it, so be a little patient. But, it’s usually as simple as selecting “forward” under the domain properties, and copy and pasting your long website address (minus the http:// in front of it) in the proper box. Don’t forget to check your spellings because you don’t want the potential customer to go to the wrong site! And, be sure and save your info!

Anyway! I hope maybe I have helped someone with this information! Good Luck! And, if you need help, this is what I am here for!


Change Ubuntu to Xubuntu

xubuntu unity desktopSo a while back I installed the Linux based Ubuntu along side Windows (dual boot) on my desktop (see my post here). And then, I installed a lighter version of Ubuntu on my daughters little HP mini, called Xubuntu. I liked the Xfce desktop she had better with Xubuntu, and thought about erasing Ubuntu on the desktop and starting over and installing Xubuntu, instead. But then just out of shear luck, I found a site that walks you through how to just switch from the Unity desktop in Ubuntu to use the Xfce desktop without erasing everything and starting over. Cool! Here is the link!

I Hacked My Wii Yesterday!

I Hacked My Wii! (lol! I Know that just sounds a bit funny saying it aloud, or even in your head, huh?) So, let me clarify, I hacked my Nintendo wii game console, and added the Homebrew Channel.

hack wii homebrew channelWith the Homebrew Channel, you can add software programs to your wii, like video/audo players, games, game emulators and many other programs! But it is not offered from the Nintendo Wii Shop, you have to install and run it from an SD card.

I won’t go into a long blog post on how to do it, but it’s not real hard to do. Here is a guide.

WARNING! It is possible to break your wii doing this! So proceed with caution and only if you feel confident you can follow the instructions! Only issue I had was not all software programs you install will work properly but you can uninstall them easily through the Homebrew Channel. 

Ubuntu – A Great Windows Alternative!

Ubuntu is a great operating system alternative to using Windows!

First off, what is Ubuntu?

Ubuntu is a Linux based desktop operating system, that can be installed on your PC laptop or desktop, and even some tablets, that has a similar functionality to that of a Windows. And in most cases, it can even be installed to run along side Windows without erasing your current Windows instillation!

ubuntu desktop
Here is an example pic of the desktop. Yes, it’s kind of odd colored but it can be customized with different colors and backgrounds, just the way you want it.

I know, when someone mentions Linux, some PC users usually think they have to be some sort of programming computer nerd to use it! That was maybe true about 15 or 20 years ago, but Linux has come a long way since then! In fact, you probably already use a version of Linux on a device you own, and don’t even know it. Like on an Android phone or tablet! 

hp media center pc with ubuntuI just replaced an older Windows installation on my 10 year old HP Media Center PC, with Ubuntu 16.04. It is running great and it’s very fast! And, I don’t even really need an ant-virus!

Ubuntu comes pre-installed with a host of useful software programs, that are similar to others on Windows, like an office suite, the Firefox browser (chrome is available too), games, utilities and more! And, all the things that weren’t already pre-installed, I can install them through the software center, kind of like the app store on Windows 8 or 10. There is also a great online community of support, if you ever run into a problem or have a question!

So far I am pretty happy with it and it does most things I could do with any of my Windows PC’s! And, one of my favorite things about Ubuntu, is it’s FREE!

So how do you get and install Ubuntu?

You go to the website here for the desktop or laptop version of Ubuntu. If your computer meets the recommended requirements, click on download. You can also scroll down and there are guides on how to create an instillation disk or a bootable USB stick, to install it on your computer. Ubuntu is free, but after clicking download, the next page will show you some suggested contributions you can make to help improve Ubuntu. Or simply click on ““, below that. If you need help, just send me a message!

xubuntuAlso, there are other “flavors” of Ubuntu you can install. I am currently running Xubuntu on my DELL Inspiron laptop. It works great on older computers running 1 gig of ram or more, and has a start menu that looks similar to Windows, that can be moved around the desktop. And if you have under 1 gig of ram, you can try the light weight Lubuntu.

If you are local to the San Angelo area and would like me to install one of these op systems on your computer, or need help doing it yourself, just contact me here.

Good Luck!