Martin Brinkmann

martin photo

Martin Brinkmann is a journalist from Germany who founded Ghacks Technology News back in 2005. Martin started his career as a tech support representative at a large German financial corporation which he used to finance his college education in English, Information Technology and History.


He quit college and his job when Ghacks began to attract a large enough readership. He made the decision to become a full time blogger and webmaster, and has not looked back since.


Martin is interested in all things tech. His primary focus is on desktop operating systems, web browsers, Internet services, and privacy related topics.


He published the book The Complete Windows 10 Privacy Guide: Windows 10 Fall Creators Update version in 2017. Martin writes a weekly column for fellow tech site Betanews as well.


You can reach Martin on Facebook or on Twitter. Please use the contact form at the bottom of the page to contact the author directly.


Martin has been quoted or mentioned in many major online and print publications, including Forbes, Lifehacker.com, ComputerWorld, LinkedIn, Reddit, Betanews.com, Bleeping Computer, TechCrunch, PC World, Tom's Hardware, Slashdot, Hacker News, The Register, and more.


Martin's articles on Ghacks

google translate

Google Proxy

I know that this has been in the news for some days but some of you probably have not heard about it, christmas is stress, you know. You can use the google translate feature to visit webpages that are blocked in your country. For example germans are not allowed to visit stormfrontdotorg or rottendotcom and could use this proxy to visit this sites.

Config Inspector

First of all, Merry Christmas everyone ;)

Config Inspector is a nice little freeware application for windows operating systems that could be described as an advanced task manager. Besides offering more information about loaded applications and processes it also displays vital information about memory and cpu usage, network utilization and general windows information.

WinDirStat Freeware

Windows Directory Statistics is a disk usage statistics viewer and cleanup tool for Microsoft Windows. It reads the disk content once and displays three different views.

The directory list which is sorted by file / subtree size, the treemap which shows the whole content of the directory tree and finally the extension list which serves as a legend and shows statistics about the file types.

cookies can be spyware

How to detect and remove spyware

This guide will provide you with the means to detect and remove spyware that is installed on your system. Before we start we should define the term spyware. There are different categories of spyware, like adware and malware, that make it difficulty for the user to distinguish between them and select the right tool for their removal.

Linux in Windows .. Again

It seems that articles that cover running linux in windows are becoming more and more popular. I wrote one a few days ago (with vmwareplayer) and would like to introduce another method of achieving this.

Like the last time linux will be embedded inside windows which has some advantages but also some disadvantages. Many people don´t like the idea of installing a second operating system, messing with their partitions and bootconfig and probably having to setup their first os again because of errors they made. A linux run in windows does not have this difficulties, its simply load and run like all other windows programs.

imageshack downloader

Auto-Download Images from Image Shack

I found a pearl script at binaryhack.org that lets you mass-download images that are hosted at imageshack.us. All you need is the pearl script and the mechanize module to download images from imageshack. If you are running windows you need a pearl interpreter, PxPearl seems to work with this script.

Vitrite Transparent Windows Freeware

I sometimes have the difficulty that the space of my desktop is not sufficient to show every information I need. This happens for instance when I use SSH to work on my rootserver and use a browser to find information.

8-foot long Star Wars Attack Cruiser

Now this one is huge. The attack cruiser was build by Erik Varszegi exclusively for display at Star Wars Celebration III. It even got a framed certificate of authenticity by George Lucas himself.

Stem to stern the model is 97 inches long and 47 inches wide, weighs over 150 pounds and is created using over 35,000 pieces!

Electric Sheep Screensaver Freeware

This looks cool. That was my first reaction when I saw the generated images at the electricsheep.org website. Electricsheep is a free screensaver that runs on pc and mac and is used by lots of people around the world.

When the screensaver is installed on your system all computers currently displaying the screensaver combine their power to create morphing abstract animations known as "sheep".

PC TV Programs – Watch TV Programs on PC

Great the next match of my favorite sports team will not be shown on free tv. Actually it will not be shown at all in my country, except for satellite of course. If you encounter situations like this one and always thought there would be no other solution than to watch boring live tickers on internet sites, then you?ve come to the right place.

I will describe three freeware programs that let you connect to channels that stream tv and especially live sports events. This includes all major european football (soccer) leagues, champions league, uefa cup, espn, wrestling, national team matches, boxing matches and much more.

eraser

Securely Delete Files

Only the pointer to the file is deleted when you opt to delete a file in windows. The whole file still exists on your harddisk and its possible to recover it using the right tools. You probably have some files where you want to make sure that the file is deleted and not recoverable at all.

Run other operating systems on your PC

There are occasions where you probably want to run a different os without really installing it. If you are running windows you probably would like to refresh your linux skills but dislike the idea of installing it on one of your partitions. The guys at wolphination explain an easy way to run on os inside your real os.

How to Secure your Wireless Network

A friend of mine moved to a new house and had to change his internet provider as well. The room with the computer and the one with the phone line were not close to each other and he decided to buy a wireless lan router and use it to connect to the internet.

We had to do a scan of the surroundings of course and found lots of unsecured wireless lan networks. I don´t know why people keep these unsecured, maybe its laziness, maybe they simply don´t know the risks involved. Its like leaving your doors open when you leave your house. Lots of things can happen..

windows command line

Windows Xp Command Line List

Its late at night and I can´t sleep, I thought i try this complete list of all windows xp command line tools and parameters to finally fall asleep but even that is not working tonight.

Japanese Smileys

Those crazy japanese again. I´am not sure why I love them that much but it probably has something to do with the fact that they are always good for a suprise (or two). I never thought they would use different smileys until I found this japanese smileys website.

Firefox Tweak Guide

If you are new to firefox and have been using internet explorer or opera before you might find some of the concepts of firefox confusing at first glance. The Firefox Tweak Guide explains most firefox options in detail and is a great asset for every new (and probably even some older) firefox users.

Boot Windows from Usb

Now this article over at tomshardware.com comes in handy. I told you yesterday how to encrypt your hard drives with the great true crypt freeware and recommended that everything would be encrypted and the system would be booted from usb.

Securing your PC with True Crypt

Only a few days ago I wrote a first small article about true crypt and recommended it. Back then I bought a usb 2.0 hard drive with 300 GB capacity and encrypted its entire partition with true crypt. This was done to test the programs functionality but also to see if it would slow down my main computer (athlon 64 3000+, 1 gb ram).

To my great suprise it did not slow down the pc and I decided to expand the encryption to cover all my hard drives. Let me tell you why and how i did this and why you should also be considering this.

Windows XP Diagnostic Guide

The people over at comcast have written a free troubleshooting guide for windows xp systems. There is of course no 100% fool proof way to fix a windows xp system, the problems that can occur are manifold and no article can ever deal with every possible error.

Astalavista Top 10 Freeware Tools

Astalavista Security Group have a beta page up that lists top freeware software products in various categories including Data Recovery, Anti Virus-Tools, Firewall and IDS and Anti-Spyware. The list contains some of the freeware tools that I already wrote about but also some new ones that might interest you.

Free file host list december 2005

I published a large file host list last month and good lots of positive and some negative feedback concerning the list. The list contained a lot of sites that allow users to upload free files to their website and share it with others. A negative aspect was that it only featured a few categories that were not that useful to find a host that suited special needs.

Data Recovery Freeware

Every know and then I accidentally delete files and later find out that I still need them. I configured my trashcan to hold no files at all, means files that I delete are gone by normal means and can´t be recovered that easily.

Gspace Gmail File Space Extension

You probably wondered why google is giving you two gigabytes of space for your gmail account. The reason could be pretty simply, no one will ever use those two gigs anyway. Even if you recieve lots of emails including attachments you´d need years to fill the space.

Some clever folks came up with an idea on how to use the empty space of your google account. The answer: Use it as online storage..

Freeware Taskbar++

Taskbar++ is a software that allows you to sort (move) the buttons of the Windows taskbar by Drag & Drop. It´s for the people who care about the buttons' position such as "Mailer is the leftmost!!", "Internet Explorer is next to Explorer", and so on.

Great Freeware Game Mono

It´s been a time that I reviewed a game at ghacks. Mono is a freeware game that deserves to be mentioned here. It has a nice gameplay, great music and the most important part, it is fun to play.

It can be described as a arcade shooter. Your goal is to change the color of the background from white to black / black to white by shooting at colored circles that leave traces of their color on the background and part into two smaller circles of the same color.

Encrypt your Hard Drives

I thought about encrypting my hard disks, or at least part of them that contain personal data, for at least one year. I never did it because I thought it would be a lot of work involved. I had to find a good program, one that would offer good encryption algorithms, would be free and easy to use.

Ascii Movies

Never thought this would be possible but it seems it is. The following site offers movies scenes in ascii format. Movies include Lord of the Rings, Spiderman, the Matrix and lots more. Detail level is amazing and you can select font size as well ranging from 1 to 12. My 1024*768 was not big enough for the large numbers but the movies look great even in a small size like 2.

Auto It Freeware

I do a lot of signups for example on webmaster forums and sites that require you to be registered to view the content. Its a tedious task to enter the information that are required by hand. You often have to add more information but the username and password, name and location for instance.

Auto It is able to help you fill those fields automatically, but not only that. It uses a combination of simulated keystrokes, mouse movement and window/control manipulation in order to automate tasks. AutoIt v3 is a freeware BASIC-like scripting language designed for automating the Windows GUI and general scripting.

10 Ways to speed up Windows xp

Everton Blair over at connectedinternet.co.uk wrote a nice beginners guide on how to increase the speed of your windows xp operating system.

free-music

Free Music List (audio download and streaming)

I wrote an article about living without the music industry a month ago. In this article I added some good sites that offered free musik downloads. Lots of people replied to this article and added more sites that they used to get free music. Free, meaning free of charges and free to download without breaking the law.

Make Firefox 1.5 work with 1.0 Extensions

Seems to be the time of the year where not only the nights but also the titles of my blog become longer and longer. I found something useful for all of you. I had the problem that some of my beloved firefox extensions would not work with firefox 1.5 until they were updated by the extensions programmers.

Clam Win Antivirus

After a lot of people told me that I forgot one of the best anti-virus freeware products out there I decided to take a look at Clam Win to get a better judgement on the claims made. The good thing besides that its free is that it´s also Open Source which makes it more transparent than the rest of the free antivirus programs.

Synchronize Your Bookmarks Between Different Computers

Everyone who has to work with different computers has enountered a problem like this. The bookmarks are different because you have no possiblity to synchronise them. It could be that you have a desktop pc and a laptop and want to use the same bookmarks wether you are using the notebook or the desktop computer.

94 Essential Tips for Staying Safe

Pc Magazine wrote a article with such a long title that I had to cut it to make it fit, the article "Maximum Security: 94 Essential Tips for Staying Safe" has some useful tips for everyone that wants to have a secure as possible computer. They divided the article into several categories, system, networking and wireless, e-mail, Web surfing, malware, and mobile.

Beginners Guide to Securing a Pc

You´d probably heard this before. Everyone should secure his personal computer. You read stories like this in every other computer mag, your geeky friends probably tell you the same and even name some programs that you should use because they are the best and most secure. I know that you would like to have a secure computer, well a secured computer, there is nothing like 100% security if you are on a network or the internet. Keep that in mind.

Autoruns

Programs can be loaded at startup of your windows machine, this is called autostart. There are unfortunately numerous places in windows that allow programs to be added to the autostart. The tool Autoruns 8.4 from sysinternals.com lists all known autostart places and programs that use this location to autostart.

Atelier Web Firewall Tester

Did you ever ask yourself if your firewall is secure enough for your internet activities ? The major concern nowadays is related to pieces of software installed in your computer which may contact and exchange information with the outside World without being authorized and noticed by you.

Watch free TV with P2p Software

I always was angered at the fact that I had no possibility to watch certain series and movies in my country while they were highly successful in another. I also dislike the fact that I can´t watch big sportevents live on tv but only recieve a minimal report in the news at that day.

Crap Cleaner Freeware

CCleaner is a freeware system optimization and privacy tool. It removes unused files from your system - allowing Windows to run faster and freeing up valuable hard disk space. It also cleans traces of your online activities such as your Internet history. But the best part is that it's fast (normally taking less that a second to run) and contains NO Spyware or Adware.

online arcade games

Tons of Classic Arcade Games

I still remember my first arcade video game, it was xevious, a vertical scrolling shoot em up game with great graphics and playability. I spend most of my money on that game and had some trouble with my parents because of this.