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2BrightSparks Articles Jargon-free computer and technology Articles for businesses and individuals.
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Cloud Backup: This article focuses on Cloud Backup and considers its strengths and weaknesses.


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Recently Added Articles

Cloud Backup

Runtime Intelligence

What are Variables and Why are they used?

Understanding NTFS Hard Links, Junctions and Symbolic Links

Receiving Email with Internet Message Access Protocol (IMAP4)


Index of Articles

100% Freeware

Let's be honest - we all love freebies. The same goes for software. We at 2BrightSparks recognize how important freeware is to the Internet community, and we've developed our fair share of great cost-free solutions. Here's your chance to find out the kinds of freeware we have to offer that you can use for yourself, or pass on to your friends and colleagues.


A Brief Introduction to Regular Expressions

This article introduces regular expressions, also known as “regex”. People who are programmers or web designers may be more familiar with the functionalities of regular expressions, although some regular PC users also make use of this powerful search tool that extracts text by matching specific words, characters or patterns.


Alternate Data Streams in NTFS

Despite the widespread use of Microsoft’s operating systems, Windows users may not be aware of a lesser known feature in the NTFS file system (New Technology File System) called Alternate Data Streams (ADS). This article aims to provide some essential information on ADS as well as its uses and drawbacks.


An Introduction to FTP

FTP is most commonly used to download files from the World Wide Web. In the early days of computing, complex sets of commands had to be learned to use the Internet. FTP, invented in the early 1970s, established a standard protocol for transferring files between systems...


Backup Using FTP

The next most important task after backing up your data files is to ensure that your backups are stored safely, preferably offsite. This article details the different kinds of secure FTP protocols, and presents an easy to use software solution that assists with backing up to a server via FTP.


Cloud Backup

This article focuses on Cloud Backup and considers its strengths and weaknesses. You might store, backup, or synchronize data to the Cloud using a service like Google Cloud Storage, Apple iCloud, or Amazon S3, but if you think local backups are not necessary because of the Cloud, think again...


Disk Imaging is Not a Total Backup Solution

Disk imaging utilities can be extremely useful tools that duplicate disks. However, there are some issues and limitations that must be kept in mind when relying on disk imaging as a backup solution.


Don't Let Your Business Sink

"Considering that businesses rely so heavily on electronic data storage, it is little wonder that they often incur significant financial losses as a result of data loss, and that for an increasing number of people, this sadly leads to the loss of their livelihood. According to the National Archives & Records Administration in Washington, US, 93% of companies filed for bankruptcy within a year of disaster when they lost their data center for 10 days or more..."


Files Transmission using Media Transfer Protocol

In this article we describe what Media Transfer Protocol (MTP) is, as well as its advantages and disadvantages.


Find Files Fast

Searching for a particular file can be stressful, especially if it’s a file that is of the utmost importance and needs to be retrieved in the quickest time possible. Discover how to find any file far faster than using the Windows search facility.


How To Make Files Unrecoverable

Many people have personal information on their computers that they need to keep protected. The solution is easy with encryption, but what about making your files unrecoverable. If you think that simply deleting the file is enough, then you are mistaken.


How To Recover Deleted Files

Have you deleted a data file and then wished you hadn’t done so? By the time you realized the deletion was accidental, you were unable to retrieve it as your Recycle Bin had been emptied. You believed it was too late to recover that file, and you’re not alone.


How To Patch Files

Ever had to email large documents to your colleagues at work and found it a real hassle due to long download times? Email is one of the most popular forms of communication in this high tech society and there is no more convenient a way to send documents than attaching them to your emails. Find out how...


Receiving Email with Internet Message Access Protocol (IMAP4)

Internet Message Access Protocol (IMAP) and Post Office Protocol (POP3) are protocols used for email retrieval and they are in-use by almost every modern mail clients and servers. Following on from the article about Post Office Protocol, this article will focus on what IMAP is, its features and the difference between these two protocols.


InfoHesiveEP for the Legal Profession

Companies in the legal sector have a reputation to uphold in this competitive market. It is imperative for legal services to be prompt, information provided to clients accurate, and that standards and guidelines are followed throughout the organization. It is a challenge to keep all partners, paralegals and other employees up-to-date with the latest information. Discover how InfoHesive can become a crucial tool for the legal professions.


InfoHesiveEP for University Professionals and Students

InfoHesive is great for organizing lecturer and teacher notes, teaching material, student records, and any other personal information. You can even include photos of your students or classmates for easier identification, especially at the beginning of school terms. Not only is InfoHesive useful in retrieving your information efficiently, with a digital publisher-built in, InfoHesive lets you share your digital information with your colleagues or classmates as well.


Improve Your Customer Communications

Ensuring prompt and effective client communications is an excellent way to outshine your competitors. Consumers and clients now demand the very best in all round support and post-sales service, and InfoHesive is there to help your organization achieve just that.


Make Your Own Help File

Help Files are often thought of as only relating to software products, however the help file is a far more flexible and useful publication developed by thousands of individuals, companies, and organizations who wish to provide documentation, manuals, and guidance about their products and services.

We take a look at the benefits to your audience of making Help Files, and show how InfoHesiveEP is ideally suited to the task.


My MP3 Files Are Missing

If you have all the time and money in the world to re-purchase, re-download and re-categorize your MP3 files in the event you have lost them, say, as a result of disk malfunction, then this article is not for you. Otherwise, read on…


Offsite Storage

Find out about the three principle ways you can store your data offsite:

• Backing up to external media and storing that media in a different location
• Backing up to an offsite server
• Using professional electronic vaulting services


Publish to the Kindle

We take a look at the pros and cons of publishing to Kindle, and show how InfoHesiveEP, the ePublishing software from 2BrightSparks, allows you to take best advantage of the Kindle eBook platform, and at the same time provides ways to distribute your work to alternative channels so you can publish to the broadest possible audience.


RAID is Not a Backup Solution

There are some who believe a RAID array provides a backup solution. It does not. This article informs users about some of the common misconceptions about RAID, and how backing up using software is crucial in preventing data loss.


Runtime Intelligence

You may have come across a request after you installed a program that asked if you would allow the transmission of non-personally identifiable information to help improve your experience. This article throws light on the world of what is known as Runtime Intelligence and provides some advice about what to consider when making the decision to opt-in or out.


Sending E-Mails with Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP)

Despite the widespread use of email, most people have little understanding behind the way email is sent to recipients. This article introduces readers to the protocol required for sending emails...


SSH File Transfer Protocol (SFTP) Explained

Learn about the Secure Shell Protocol protocol (SSH) used to establish a secure connection between a remote server and a computer. Secure Shell utilizes public key encryption to provide strong user authentication and secure encrypted communications over the Internet.


The Basic Principles of Data Compression

Internet users who download or upload files from/to the web, or use email to send or receive attachments will most likely have encountered files in compressed format. In this topic we will cover how compression works, the advantages and disadvantages of compression, as well as types of compression.


The Cook's Friend

Are you having a party and wondering what to cook? Or perhaps you just want to cook a nutritious and quick meal for your family after a long day at work? What about having a list of songs to play at your party and games to get your party going? What if you are a person who gets inspiration to cook from flicking through a cookbook or browsing through a recipe website? Well, have we got a great tool for you!


The Photographer’s Nightmare

Backing up your photos may be a tedious and pain staking job using Windows Explorer or the inflexible and limited onboard backup feature in Windows XP or Vista, but it needn’t be. With the right software you can prevent your treasured photos from being lost with the click of a button...


The Writer's Friend

Whether you are a freelance writer who needs to organize your articles according to publications that you are writing, a columnist who requires your articles to be organized by month or issues, an author who would like a way to easily access your book chapters and sub-chapters, or a writer who has decided to become environmentally friendly by publishing your work in an ebook format rather than a printed-on paper version - InfoHesive is your solution!


Understanding Compression

File compression enables a computer user to reduce the size of a data file so that it is more convenient for storage or sharing. Many of us have experienced difficulties in sending data files like text documents and digital photos via email because the file size is just too great. Find out about the different kinds of compression and how useful it is.


Understanding File Attributes

We use digital files every day, but it’s relatively rare we need to recognize the attributes of a digital file. File Attributes tag files with additional information that Windows uses to act on. Knowing a little about File Attributes will help you understand why certain things happen with files, and why certain things can’t happen if an attribute is defined in a certain way...


Understanding NTFS Hard Links, Junctions and Symbolic Links

Over the years Microsoft continued to improve the linking tools in the Windows NTFS operating file systems which can now be used to link files and/or directories together. The latest form of file link was introduced in Windows Vista and continues to form part of their latest operating system. In this article we will look at what these file links are and how they differ from one another.


Understanding Post Office Protocol (POP3)

Most Internet users with email accounts would have used some form of “client” software (Outlook, Thunderbird etc.) to access and manage their email at one point or another. To retrieve emails, these email clients may require the configuration of Post Office Protocol (or POP3) before messages can be downloaded from the server. This article will help readers understand what POP3 is and how it works.


Understanding Sessions in Windows

In 2006, Microsoft released the Windows Vista operating system and incorporated several new security features. One significant change was called “Session 0 Isolation” and continues to form a part of the services enhancements first introduced in Windows Vista and supported in later versions of Windows. In this article we will focus on what sessions are and how they work...


What are Variables and Why are they used?

In order to make sure applications store your data in the correct place (regardless of which OS is used), variables can be used to request for and return the values of these paths dynamically. In this article we will be looking at variables and how they can benefit users.


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