16. October 2015 · Comments Off on Where to find Command-line Utilities for Batch Files · Categories: Development, TechBits · Tags:
Command-line utilities are useful for expanding the capabilities of batch files. There are many more available, but the below list can be used as a starting point.

Free Command-line Utilities for Batch Scripts

NameDescriptionSourceSize Uncompressed (kB)More info/License
BusyBoxA single binary with many common Unix tools. Often used in embedded Linux systems. Fewer options than originals due to size optimizationRon Yorston647kGNU General Public License
DSToolBoxTwelve utilitiesDreamCycle Studios40-158kFreeware
F2KO SoftwareOver 40 utilitiesCMD ToolsVariousFreeware
Gammadyne's Free DOS UtilitiesSixteen various utilities including timers, file management tools, and a DOS shellGammadyne's Free DOS Utilities76-421kFreeware
GnuWinOver 160 separately downloadable native Win32 open source utilities for Windows 2k-Win7GnuWinVariousGNU General Public License
Gow (Gnu On Windows)Over 100 useful open source UNIX applications compiled as native win32 binariesBrent Matzelle1-1795kOpen Source MIT License
GtoolsSeveral command-line and GUI Windows Administrative Toolsgtools current version19- 520kOpen Source
HexatomiumAbout a dozen utilitiesWindows Apps by FS112-320kFree for personal use
Horst Schaeffer's Software PagesSeveral various utilities  CMD 32/64 bit 4-35kFreeware
NircmdA small command-line utility that can perform many different tasksNirSoft43kFreeware. 32 and 64 bit versions also available
Ritchie LawrenceA somewhat outdated (2005), but still useful list of command-line utilitiesRitchie LawrenceVariousMostly Freeware
Rob nan der Woude's Scripting PagesDescriptions and download links for a many utilities. Probably the most up-to-date and comprehensive listing of its kindBatch UtilitiesVariousAlmost entirely Freeware
RubyPdf Software Download CenterSpecialized PDF ToolsRubypdf TechnologiesUp to a few MBMostly Freeware
Small command line utilitiesOver 150 system utilities. Archive package or separately. Page also has small GUI tools and NET utilities.LTRData6-100k. Most under 20kFreeware
SwissFileKnifeCombines many functions into a single, portable executableStahlWorks Technologies 1,576kBSD License. Binaries and source code available. Versions for Mac and Linux.
SystemTools UtilitiesA dozen utilities focusing on user account and networking tasksSystemTools SoftwareMost under 50kFreeware
Util32Twenty 32-bit useful command-line utilitiesPersoft23-180kFreeware
Uwe Sieber's HomepageFile, drive, USB and misc toolsUwe Sieber's HomepageVariousFreeware

13. September 2014 · Comments Off on Retrieve and Embed Cover Art into Audio Files · Categories: TechBits · Tags:
bluenotegreen notemusic folder

Useful information from Tinyapps.org that shows how to retrieve and embed cover art into audio files with MP3Tag and the command-line application DisCoverArt. The blog post is reproduced in its entirety below:

Batch download and embed album cover art #

If you have a huge MP3 collection and just want to batch download and embed cover art without verifying each cover individually (and iTunes’ “Get Album Artwork” is insufficient):

  1. Download and install Mp3tag
  2. Download DisCoverArt and unzip contents to the Mp3tag program directory (e.g., C:\Program Files (x86)\Mp3tag)
  3. Open an elevated command prompt and cd to the Mp3tag program directory
  4. Run regsvr32 custommsgbox.dll and click OK when the success dialog appears
  5. Open Mp3tag
  6. File > Add directory… > navigate to your music folder > Select Folder
  7. Create a new tool:
    1. Tools > Options > Tools
    2. Click the New (yellow star) button
    3. Name: DisCoverArt Google 300×300 Artist+Title NoQuotes
    4. Path: Browse to the Mp3tag program directory and select DisCoverArt.exe
    5. Parameter: “%artist%” “%title%” -discomusic.com 0 1 300 300 jpg 1 1
    6. Check “for all selected files” > OK > OK
  8. Create a new action:
    1. Actions > Actions (you need to select at least one song in the main interface for this menu item to be available)
    2. Click the New (yellow star) button
    3. Name of action group: Save Coverart
    4. Click OK > click the New button again
    5. Select action type: Import Cover From File > OK
    6. Format string for image filename: %artist% – %title%.jpg
    7. Import cover as: Front Cover
    8. Check “Delete existing cover art” > OK > OK > Close
  9. Right click on column header > Customize columns… > check “Cover” > click “Move up” until it is at or near the top of the list
  10. Click the Cover column to sort
  11. Select all files without an entry in the Cover column (the author recommends selecting no more than 300 at a time to avoid problems)
  12. Right click on highlighted files and click Tools > DisCoverArt Google 300×300 Artist+Title NoQuotes
  13. Wait for all console windows to close
  14. Actions > Actions (Quick) > “Import cover from file” > OK
  15. Format string for image filename: %artist% – %title%.jpg
  16. Import cover as: Front Cover
  17. Check “Delete existing cover art” > OK > OK
  18. Close Mp3tag
  19. Getting the artwork to show up in iTunes:
    1. Open iTunes and click “Albums”
    2. Edit > Select All > Right click > click “Uncheck Selection” (album covers will appear)
    3. Edit > Select All > Right click > “Check Selection”

Another option is to download cover art with Album Art Downloader and embed with Mp3tag:

  1. Download and run Album Art Downloader
  2. File > New > File Browser…
  3. Enter path to music directory under “Search for audio files in:”
  4. Click Search
  5. Click “Select all albums with missing artwork”
  6. Click “Get Artwork for Selection…”
  7. Click “Automatically download and save results for the remaining queued searches”
  8. Click “Download and save results automatically”
  9. Click “Start”
  10. When the process is complete, embed the album art with Mp3tag by starting with step 14 above. The only change is in step 15, where you’ll need to use Folder.jpg as the format string.


Source: Tinyapps.org


13. June 2014 · Comments Off on Disable the Splash Screen for Independently Installed PortableApps · Categories: TechBits · Tags: ,
splashConvertallPortableApps.com provides free and open source portable SW that can be downloaded and run separately from the PortableApps.com Platform™ management system. When launching apps independently from the platform, the splash screen can be annoying. Although an option exists to  disable the splash screen from the PortableApps.com Platform’s™ “Advanced Preferences”, this doesn’t apply to independent apps not using this platform. Thankfully, this is easily fixed by modifying a single file.

How to disable the splash screen for your application

  • Open the application’s folder and drill down to the /Other/Source directory.
  • In the Source directory open AppNamePortable.ini with a text editor. In some cases an .ini file already exists with the application’s name in this directory. In any case, there will only be one .ini file in this directory. Open this file and go to the next step.
  • Change the line DisableSplashScreen=false to DisableSplashScreen=true (see screenshot below. Click to enlarge).
  • Use “save as” to save the file with the name of the application and the .ini extension (e.g., ConvertAllPortable.ini).
  • Close the text editor and copy or move this file to the application’s main directory.

screen shot of disable splash

That’s it. The .ini file will override the default configuration when starting the application. There should be a noticeable difference in how quickly the application starts. If you still have a splash screen, make sure that the .ini file just moved to the application’s main directory is correctly named. For example, if the application name is ConvertAllPortable.exe, the .ini file should be ConvertAllPortable.ini.


21. November 2012 · Comments Off on Change folders for Save/Open and Office dialogs with Placesbar Editor · Categories: TechBits · Tags: ,
Placesbar Editor is a freeware tool that provides a convenient way to change any of the five folders on the Places Bar menu to whatever you want without directly editing the registry. PlacesBar Editor works in Windows 2000/ME/XP/Vista and Office. For Vista and above, the ability to change the Places Bar is built into the operating system, but apparently not for the Basic and Home Editions of Vista or Win7. For Vista or Win7 versions other than the Basic or Home editions, see WinVistaClub’s article: How To Add Your Own Folders To The Places Bar Or Favorite Links. In any case, for XP and older systems, this is a must-have utility. For further information, see the review on PlacesBar Editor at Freeware Genius.

places bar


10. April 2012 · 7 comments · Categories: TechBits · Tags:
unknown exception dialogAn unknown Exception may occur when launching Notepad++ ver. 5.9 (Unicode) or later. This problem appeared on a PC running WinXP SP3 32-bit, and according to information on Sourceforge, the issue may also apply to Vista, but not Win7. The cause appears to be four plugins that may be incompatible with the updated version of Scitilla.

The four plugins are:

  • AHKExternalLexer.dll
  • ExternalLexerKVS.dll
  • NppExternalLexers.dll
  • Oberon2LexerU.dll

Update (03/21/13): Many users experiencing the unknown exception issue with Notepad++ versions since 5.9 have resolved the problem by uninstalling the PreviewHTML.dll or another plugin instead (see the comments for problem plugins).

Users can move the plugins one at a time into another folder within the “plugins” folder and relaunch the program to identify the plugin(s) responsible. In the case of the WinXP PC noted above with this problem, it was necessary to move a single plugin, the NppExternalLexers.dll file, into another folder (e.g., disabled_plugins) to get Notepad++ to launch without error. Any responsible plugin(s) causing the problem may also be deleted or renamed so they won’t load.


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