How to read non-friend messages on Facebook

facebook other messages

Did you know that it is possible to send messages to Facebook users that you are not friends with? To do so simply open the profile of the person on Facebook and click on the message button that you see listed on it.

But how do you check those messages on the website? It is actually quite easy but somewhat hidden.

Open the message inbox. Here you see all messages that you have received from friends recently and sometimes also from users who are not your friends yet. You find Other listed there on the page next to inbox. It displays the messages that third parties have sent to you in the past.

Click on Others here and you see a list that looks exactly like the inbox list. Here you see all messages from third parties mostly.

I recommend you go through that list every now and then as it may contain messages from people you know but are not yet friends with on Facebook. Say, old college friends, family members or others that you were in contact with in the past.

You see the senders profile image, name, the first words of the message and the month and day it was sent to you. A click opens it on Facebook providing you with options to write a reply right away, or use one of the actions from the menu on top instead.

This includes deleting or muting the conversation, opening a chat session with the user, forwarding or deleting the message, reporting it as spam, or adding it to the message archive.

message filtering preferences

You change change the message filter with a click on the edit preferences link here.

  • Basic Filtering – Mostly see messages from friends or people you may know.
  • Strict Filtering – Mostly see messages from friends. Messages from people you want to hear from may go to your Other folder.

If you switch to strict filtering, less third party messages find their way into your inbox.

Papercuts Helps Users Take Notes Right Inside Google Chrome


Every internet user prefers to take notes when they are researching topics online, whether its for their projects or any other reason for that matter. Note taking can help you remember important things. If you browse the internet, you will come across plenty of note taking applications. If you use Google Chrome regularly, you should give Papercuts for Chrome a try as it integrates the feature into the browser.

PaperCuts for Chrome is a nifty extension for Google Chrome that allows you to take notes in Google Chrome. The best thing about the extension is that you can even copy items from any web page and save it in Papercuts with a single click. With Papercuts, you can even categorize the notes into different tabs and tag them for easy access. You can even sync and share notes among different computers as well. If you want to customize the appearance of the extension menu, you can do so from the extension settings, change background color, increase/decrease box size etc.

Once installed, the extension adds “Add to Papercuts” option in Chrome’s context menu. All you have to do is highlight the text you want to save, right click on it and select Add to Papercut. To view all your saved notes, all you have to do is click on the extension icon and it will show you all the saved notes or from the extension settings. If there are any notes that you access frequently, you can assign shortcut keys to them and access them using your keyboard.

Papercuts can be a useful extension for all those who prefer to take notes in their browser. It might not be the best alternative to the popular note taking application, Evernote, but it can be very useful for all those who like simplicity and ease of access.

Customize Shortcuts in Google Chrome with Shortcuts Manager

Shortcut Manager Chrome 4

Shortcut keys provide users with quick access to different functions and provide a quick way to operate different computer programs. Using shortcut keys can boost the productivity of the user as he or she is able to finish the task faster compared to using the mouse to perform those tasks.

If you are a Google Chrome user, you should have a pretty good idea that it has default shortcut keys that can be used to quickly perform tasks. There are still many tasks that have no assigned shortcut key or you are not comfortable with the keys that are already defined to that particular tasks.. If that’s the case, then take a look at Shortcut Manager for Google Chrome which allow you to manage and customize the shortcut keys in Google Chrome. It even allows you to add new shortcuts to perform tasks that have no shortcut associated with them yet in the browser.

First of all, head over to Chrome Web Store and install Shortcut Manager extension. As with all other extensions, you must give Shortcut Manager access to your browsing history as well as access to your browsing data on all websites. Once installed, a new icon will appear in your Google Chrome taskbar, right next to other installed extensions.

Click on the extension icon and select “See All Settings / Add New Shortcuts”. Alternatively, you can right click on the extension icon and go to its options from there as well.

Shortcut Manager Chrome 3

From the Shortcut Manager settings, you can check the complete list of available shortcuts for Google Chrome. If you want to edit any existing shortcut, simply click on the pencil icon right next to the shortcut and It will open the Edit Shortcut page where you can change the shortcut key and the function it performs. Click on Save button when you are satisfied with your settings. It even helps users create their own list of shortcuts for Google Chrome as well.

If you are a user who prefers to use shortcuts to perform all the tasks while browsing, you should give Shortcut Manager a try. The best thing about the extension is that you can add any key to perform any specific task. This will in return improve your productivity significantly especially if you would use shortcuts more often if you could map them to different keys.

Feel free to share your views.

Microsoft Windows 8 Cover Photo Creator app for Facebook

cover photo creator facebook

Microsoft is pretty tight with Facebook lately, integrating Facebook information into its Bing search engine, and Facebook integrating Skype video chat on the website. It seems the two companies have a mutual understanding on how to improve each other’s business.

You know that Microsoft released Windows 8 just a couple of weeks ago, and while it is too early to tell if it will be a success like Windows 7 was or a disappointment like Vista, it is certain that it is the talk of the town right now.

Microsoft has gone out of its way to promote the operating system, and one of the new things it did to do so was to create an application for Facebook.

The Windows 8 Cover Photo Creator for Facebook enables you to create a cover photo for your Facebook Timeline profile that looks just like Windows 8’s brand new start screen.

Once you have installed the application and gone over the rights it wants, you can get started right away.

Each icon displayed on the new cover photo can be changed with other photos, those of your Facbeook friends or photos that you have uploaded to Facebook, plus photos that the app seems to make available.

In essence, you can make a cover photo that features your favorite photos and friends right on your Timeline profile. It is a bit unfortunate that you can’t change some of the icons that list Microsoft apps like SkyDrive, Internet Explorer or Xbox Games. While some of you may not mind, I personally do not like this at all as it makes the cover photo look more like an advertisement than something that you really want to look at whenever you open your Facebook profile on the site.

Still, if you are a big fan of Windows 8 or want to give it a try, head over to the apps page on Facebook to get started with the configuration. Besides options to select different photos for some of the icons, it also allows you to select a background color for the border of the screen.

How to uninstall Internet Explorer 10

uninstall internet explorer 10

Microsoft has released Internet Explorer 10 Preview for Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 yesterday. The new version of the web browser replaces the existing system browser, either Internet Explorer 8 or IE9 when it is installed. Since it is a preview version, it is reasonable to assume that some users install the preview to test the browser on their system. Some may make the decision later on to go back to the previous version of Internet Explorer. Reasons that may lead to the decision include wanting to wait for the final version before upgrading again, or encountering issues with the new browser version.

The preview version of Internet Explorer 10 can be uninstalled just like any other software program on Windows 7 or Windows Server 2008 R2. When you uninstall Internet Explorer 10 on your system, the browser will be downgraded to the version that was previously installed on it. If you have used Internet Explorer 8 before, that’s the browser that will become available again. If you have updated to Internet Explorer 9 before, that’s the version instead then that’s it the version available on the system after the downgrade.

Follow the instructions below to uninstall Internet Explorer 10 on your system:

  1. Click on the start button at the lower right on the screen.
  2. Enter uninstall a program and select the entry under Control Panel in the results listing.
  3. On the left sidebar, click on View installed updated. This displays all Windows updates installed on the system.
  4. Locate Windows Internet Explorer 10 under the Microsoft Windows group here.
  5. Right-click on the entry and select Uninstall from the context menu
  6. Select yes when the confirmation prompt appears and follow the instructions on the screen.
  7. You need to restart your system to complete the uninstallation of Internet Explorer 10. Windows will display a prompt to restart right then or at a later point in time.

Internet Explorer 8 or 9 are then again available on the system after you have restarted it once.

Use any image as the Windows 8 start screen background

windows 8 start screen background

Microsoft restricts the number of backgrounds that you can select for the start screen of its new operating system Windows 8. What this means is that you can’t use your own photos or wallpapers that you create or download from the Internet. Instead, you are limited to the 20 backgrounds and 25 or so color schemes that Microsoft makes available by default.

While that may be sufficient for some, it is a limitation that is not really understandable at all, considering that all Windows operating systems up to and including Windows 8 offered options to select custom pictures as background images on the desktop.

As always it is third party software that is stepping in and providing you with functionality that Microsoft knowingly or unknowingly failed to integrate into one of their operating systems.

Windows 8 Start Screen Customizer is a free program for Windows 8 that you can use to change the start screen of the operating system to any image you like. You can use it to display wallpapers from the Internet there, photos from your digital camera, any anything else that you want.

Once you have downloaded the program you need to unpack it to your system. Note that it is packed with the popular arching software 7-Zip and that you need the program or another archive that supports the 7z format.

You also need to change the extension of the single file after extraction from .ex_ to .exe so that you can execute it.

The program interface is relatively easy to use. To set a custom wallpaper image to the Windows 8 start screen select Load Picture to pick the image from a local drive. You can then select the area of the image that you want displayed on the screen. Note that the background needs to be within certain parameters, which is a requirement that you can’t change.

Simply drag and drop the corners of the rectangle until you have found the right selection. Click apply once you are done to set the new wallpaper start screen.  Note that you need to run it at startup, the option is displayed in the program window, so that the selected image is set as the wallpaper on every system start. If you fail to do so Windows will revert back to the old image instead.

Remove unwanted toolbars with Toolbar Cleaner for Windows

toolbar cleaner

i think it is fair to say that the majority of Internet users do not like toolbars. While there may certainly be some who appreciate a toolbar and use its functionality that it makes available, the majority of toolbar installations are probably accidental in nature or even outright malicious.

Sometimes, you may ask yourself how a toolbar made its way on the system, and the answer more often than not is through the installation of unrelated software that included the option – often enabled by default – to install the toolbar in addition to the software program you installed on your computer system.

You have probably heard about Babylon Toolbar or Ask Toolbar, or even ran into those toolbars first hand on your operating system. While you can try and remove those toolbars manually from your system, you may instead prefer a superior solution that gets rid of multiple toolbars on the system at once.

Toolbar Cleaner is a free software for Windows that you can use to remove toolbars from popular web browsers such as Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome. The application scans the browsers for installed toolbars and extensions, and displays all of them in its interface shortly thereafter. From here, it is just a matter of selecting the toolbars and browser add-ons that you want to remove to uninstall those programs from your system.

Note that you need to close the browsers before you run the uninstaller, and that you may need to restart your system before the process completes.

The Windows Startup tab that the program makes available as well can be used to remove start up programs from Windows. It is not really related to cleaning toolbars but a nice addition to the program.

Toolbar Cleaner is compatible with all recent versions of the Microsoft Windows operating system. You can download the program from the official program website.

Read EPUBs in Firefox with EPUBReader

firefox epubreader

EPUB (Electronic PUBlishing) is a popular format for ebooks that is supported by many devices and offered on many websites that make available free or commercial ebooks. Web browsers do not support the file format by default, which means that you either have to download the file to your local computer and use a viewer installed on the computer to view it, download or copy it to a device that can read the EPUB format, or install a browser extension such as EPUBReader for Firefox to read the electronic books in the browser directly.

When you install the extension in the Firefox web browser, you add support for EPUB format to the browser. Note that you need to restart the browser before support becomes available. You can launch EPUB books right in the browser after the restart just by clicking on their link on the website it is published on.

It is still possible to download the book if you prefer to do so sometimes. Either right-click on the EPUB link and select Save As from the browser’s context menu, or use the save icon that EPUBReader makes available once the ebook has been loaded by the extension in the browser.

The reader can display the chapters of the book on the left sidebar, or only the book pages either two pages next to each other or just a single page.

Controls are available at the bottom of the page that allow you to increase or decrease the font size of the text, change the layout of the reader, navigate to the first, last, next or previous page, or access the reader’s options for additional options to customize its layout.

EPUBReader is without doubt one of the best browser extensions that add EPUB reading support to any of the current web browsers.


Data Recovery: recover accidentally deleted files in Windows

data recovery

Have you ever lost files or documents, for instance after a system crash or by accidentally deleting them or the contents of the recycle bin only to find out that files or documents that you still need to access are not available anymore.

If multiple users have access to the same user account, it can also happen that one of the other users deleted files by accident or on purpose on the system.

To get them back, data recovery is your best option. There are free tools out there that you can run to scan the hard drives of the system for files that have been deleted but not removed from the hard drive. You see, deleting does not mean that immediately. When you delete a file in Windows, the operating system removes the write protection from the area the file was stored on and removes information about the file from its records. The file itself on the other hand remains untouched on the hard drive with good recovery chances if no other data has been written in all of its or part of its location on the drive.

Data Recovery is a free portable file recovery program for the Windows operating system. Just start it up, select the drive that you want to scan for deleted files and wait for the list to be populated. If you can’t find the file, use the deep scan feature to scan the drive more thoroughly for leftovers. You can use the filter to only display files matching the word that you enter there to speed up the finding of specific documents you seek to recovery.The program furthermore comes with an option to wipe deleted files for good so that they cannot be recovered anymore by file recovery software.

I recommend to save files that you want to recover to another drive so that you do not accidentally overwrite the file that you are trying to recover.

The ease of use makes the program an excellent option if you quickly need to recover files on a Windows system, especially since you don’t need to install it on your system to run it.

How to reset your password on Facebook

facebook login password not correct

Yesterday when I wanted to access my Facebook account I noticed that the log in form would not accept my password. I was redirected to an error page that asked me to re-enter the password as it was not the right one.

Please re-enter your password

The password you entered is incorrect. Please try again (make sure your caps lock is off).

Forgot your password? Request a new one.


I can’t really say why Facebook did not accept the password – which I used for a very long time before without any issues. I tried a few tricks but to no avail:

  • Checked to make sure that the caps lock key was not activated.
  • Wrote the password down in a text file and copied it to the form instead of writing it directly to make sure it was the password that I remembered.

Since nothing was working I decided to click on the forgot your password link to get a new password sent to me.

The identify your account page lists two options to reset the password:

  1. By entering the email address, phone number or Facebook username
  2. By entering your own name and the name of a friend.

You will receive an email that contains a link to reset the password. If you can’t click on that link directly, copy it instead and paste it into your web browser to get started.

Once you are back in your account I suggest you change the password again. To do that, click on the down arrow next to your username and select Account Settings.

Scroll down until you see the password group there. Here you can click on the change link to change your password again.

Make sure you follow the password guidelines on Facebook. It is recommend to select a long password that is not made up of a single dictionary name (a word found in a dictionary). I’d recommend to select one with at least 12 chars that include at least one number or special character.