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

defrag all drives

Defrag all Hard drives at once in Windows

The defragmentation tool that ships with Windows is pretty basic and does not offer features that are needed for instance if you have more than one partition or hard drive. Some users would like to defrag all of their hard drives at once while they go to work or sleep.

ebay sniper

Bid-O-Matic for eBay

Bid-O-Matic is a so called sniper tool for eBay. Sniper tools take advantage of the speed that computers use to perform tasks in contrast to humans. It takes only a fracture of a second to bid on an eBay auction for a computer while a human would need between 5-15 seconds to do the same.

Messenger Plus Live

Messenger Plus Live is an add-on for the Windows Live Messenger which adds a multitude of new features to the main program. Messenger Plus Live works with Windows Live Messenger 8 and 8.5 and can be used on Windows XP and Windows Vista.

spamato

Spamato anti spam solution for email clients

Spamato is a free software that was developed in Java which can be used to detect and delete spam found in many popular mail clients such as Thunderbird, Microsoft Outlook and others. Several clients have specialized versions for them and all others can use the standalone version which acts as a mail proxy that sits between the mail client and the mail server.

Weekend Fun Alien Breed Obliteration

The Alien Breed series was a successful action game series on the Commodore Amiga back in the good old days and several guys decided that it would be great to rewrite Alien Breed '92 from scratch and make it available on PC's as well. The game has been released for some time and really catches the Amiga spirit.

Microsoft USB Flash Drive Manager

Microsoft USB Flash Drive Manager is a free software for Windows XP created by Microsoft to make it easier to backup and restore files on USB devices that get connected to the computer. It was primarily designed as a backup and restoration utility but offers several other features that make it worthwhile.

folder 2 my pc

Add Folders to My Computer

I always thought that it would be pretty nice to be able to add the most used folders and applications to My Computer. I personally use My Computer to achieve two goals. First I use it to access my DVD and virtual drives to start applications for instance. The second use is that I access folders that I tend to use very often. Folders like my mp3 collection, profile folders and several applications fall under this category as well.

Autopatcher June 2007 for XP finally released

I mentioned three days ago in my blog that the Autopatcher team released the June 2007 patches for Windows Vista and just now they announced that the updates for XP can be downloaded as well from their sites. In case you missed the last post here is what Autopatcher does.

Torrent Swapper

Torrent Swapper is a bittorrent client with some interesting features that make it stick out of the crowd of bittorrent clients. First of all it was written in Python making it independent from any operating system. Several other clients offer this as well though and the main feature that distinguishes Torrent Swapper from other clients is the feature to share upload speed between computers.

Change the Windows System Tray Clock

The default clock that is shown on every Windows operating system in the lower left corner was always a thorn in my eyes. It displayed the time but the current date was always a click away. I always wanted to change this and customize the way the clock was displayed in the system tray leaving the boundaries of the Microsoft clock.

Kwik e mart 7 11

Simpsons promotion

Ok. I have seen lots of movie promotions but this one is topping them all. Remember the Simpsons tv series ? The Kwik-E-Mart were Apu is pressing money out of Homer and his friends ? Well, they apparently created several of those across the United States to promote the new Simpson movie.

Things that I would make different if I had the chance

I'm creating and maintaining Internet websites for a very long time and can look back to almost two years of successful blogging here at ghacks. While there is not much that I would change if I had the chance there are a few things that I would definitely made different if I had the chance to go back in the past and act again.

firefox environment backup extension febe

Firefox Environment Backup Extension

The Firefox Environment Backup Extension -short FEBE - offers a great and easy way to backup all Firefox settings, themes and extensions. I was looking for a way to synchronize all of my settings from my desktop computer to Firefox that was also installed on my notebook.

Suicide Girls iPhone Wallpapers

"What's the point of a revolutionary new communications and media device if you can't put half naked tattooed girls on it?". That is the first line in the article over at Suicide Girls that is offering three packages with wallpapers for the newly released iPhone. The three packages contain the following wallpapers:

Have you met Ms. Dewey ?

Archer posted a link to Ms. Dewey in the comments and I decided to give it a more in depth trial after taking the initial look. Have you met Ms. Dewey reminds me a lot of a line in one of my favorite tv series called How I met your mother which is a way to appraoch women for Barney and Ted in the series.

Well, Ms. Dewey is basically a search engine with a twist. Ms. Dewey is there to, talking to you, making fun out of you and being mean if you ask here some impolite questions. I don't want to repeat what I have written because it is not that appropriate but you probably get it anyway.

relakks

Anonymous on the Internet with Relakks

Relakks offers a easy and anonymous way to be on the Internet by tunneling all traffic through their service which is based in Sweden. This effectively means that your home IP is not revealed to websites, p2p clients and servers and all other computers and servers that you are connecting to.

The traffic is encrypted as well which makes it unlikely that someone is able to spy on it including your ISP. I have been writing about Relakks before and they had some serious troubles with their service at the beginning which turned off many users who tried the service initially.

Create a Password Reset Disk on USB in Windows XP

Windows XP offers a function that is hidden deep inside the user account menu. It is possible to create a so called password reset disk that can be used to reset the password of the account is has been created for. You simply pop in the disk if you have forgotten your password and use it to create a new one.

There is normally no way to store the components of the password reset disk on an usb device because Windows XP is unable to access it during logon. It is not a problem to store the files on an USB device but you will face troubles when trying to access it if you lost your password.

autopatcher

Autopatcher June for Vista and XP 64-bit released

Autopatcher is an ongoing project that creates a monthly executable that contains all patches for Microsoft operating systems that have been released in that month. It is then possible to execute this program and apply all patches that have been released by Microsoft at once without connecting to the Microsoft server at all.

MY BLOG EARNINGS FOR JUNE 2007

Everton and several other users are publishing their blog earnings every month and I thought that I would do a similar thing with the exception that I will not publish the absolute numbers but only the percentage of what the service is earning. I feel not that comfortable to reveal my earnings in dollars because I feel that it belongs to my private life.

10 Freeware Recommendations

I had the chance to test hundreds of freeware and open-source softwares in the last months and would like to list 20 of them that I would recommend. I'm actually using half of them on my Windows XP computer right now and I'm glad that I made the change from some respected popular programs to lesser known but better alternatives.

Get the Vista Startmenu for XP

I'm not sure why someone would want to have the Windows Vista startmenu for Windows XP because I feel that the missing run box is not properly compensated by the search box. The look and feel are nice though and this might be the main reason why some users would consider switching to the new startmenu.

popular on youtube

Preview Daily Top 25 of Youtube with SlapVid

If you ever wondered how so many users are able to watch hundreds of videos that are published on Youtube on a daily basis you might want to consider using a service like SlapVid which offers previews of the daily top 25 videos at Youtube.

Free Video Conferencing with ooVoo

Video Conferencing might not be that interesting to most of my regular readers but I know that some of them actively use it for the business they run. The free video conferencing software ooVoo offers several elements that most, if not all, free softwares of that kind do not offer.

The first and most notable is the feature that up to six participants can use ooVoo simultaneously which is great if you want to video chat with your friends or need to bring people from different locations together to take part in a meeting. It runs pretty smooth even with six users and offers a good sound quality.

crunchyroll

Crunchyroll Asian Movie site with many translations

I love Asian movies, especially the ones from South Korea and Japan which sometimes reach a quality that is on par with only the most exclusive movies from Hollywood. But there is more than Takashi Miike and Takeshi Kitano, just consider all the great Anime movies or television series that rarely make an appearance on Western television.

Weekend Fun Purgatorio

The game for this weekend is a rather dark adventure called Purgatorio created with the Adventure Game Studio. It features an Irish soldier of the peacekeeping forces who gets shot in his arm during active duty only to wake up wounded in a strangely familiar looking town not able to remember how he went there.

Universal Share Downloader

I wrote an article about the software Rapget yesterday which could be used to queue downloads for files that are hosted on file hosting websites such as rapidshare or megaupload. Rapget had the problem, that the download from rapidshare for instance was not working if you did not have a premium account.

How to create a successful rewarding blog

I got several emails the last days asking me about tips on how to start a blog or improve an already established blog which in the end led to the post that I'm currently writing. I sometimes hear the argument that it does not make sense to start a blog because there are so many blogs out there that already cover all topics that one can write about.

While this is definitely not true for all topics you will face serious difficulties if you want to create just another gadget or technology blog unless you can provide something that the other blogs can't. While it will probably not be worthwhile to just copy and paste what established sites like Gizmodo or Engadget write it could be worthwhile to write about the same topics from a different point of view.

Use Rapget to queue downloads from file hosts

Rapget is a sweat little freeware program that can be used to download multiple files at once from over 60 file hosts including Rapidshare.com, Megaupload.com, Yourfilehost.com and others. The real beauty of Rapget lies in the fact that it automatically bypasses the annoying captcha that is used on most websites to prevent access with download managers.

It is furthermore possible to add username and password of premium accounts if available which has to be done for several services unfortunately. I was not able to download files from rapidshare.com for instance without adding premium account details.

How to defeat most keyloggers on public computers

Keyloggers can generally be classified as either software or hardware keyloggers. Software keyloggers are running as a background task on the system while hardware keyloggers are little devices that are most of the time connected between pc and keyboard recording every keystroke in their own memory.

toneshared

Get free electronic ringtones at Toneshared

The distribution of ringtones for mobile phones is a very lucrative business if you consider that there are more than 3 billion mobile phones out there in the world. You can buy ringtones of every popular song in existence but it is rather hard to get those ringtones for free.

Toneshared is offering a large, free collection of electronic and alternative ringtones that can be downloaded right from their website. It is furthermore possible to listen to the ringtones before downloading them. Ringtones are sorted by artist, popularity and age. I don't know any of the artists mentioned on Toneshared but if you like electronic music you might probably know some of them.

Erase Personal Information from iTunes Plus Songs

The outcry of the Internet community was loud and clear when then information was published that songs purchased without DRM from Apple's iTunes store would contain the name and username of the buyer. Horror scenarios where created that suggested that someone could get convicted if his purchased songs would be found on P2P websites even if he did not share them personally.

speed dial options

Speed Dial Firefox Extension

The new version of Opera introduced a so called Speed Dial feature which displays nine thumbnails of websites for fast access that have been selected by the user. The nine websites are displayed when the user opens a new blank tab or a new blank window and can be accessed by either clicking on the thumbnails or pressing the corresponding numbers (1-9).

The exact same feature is now available as a Firefox extension Speed Dial. Websites can be assigned to the nine spots by using the "Set as Speed Dial" entry in the Bookmarks menu. This is slightly more uncomfortable than in Opera where it is possible to click one of the nine spots and select an entry from the bookmarks.

Use the Windows Vista style in XP

I'm not sure why someone would want to change the style of his XP installation to that of Windows Vista but it seems that the demand for this is immense. Version 7 of the Vista Transformation Package has been released yesterday which turns your ordinary XP style into one that resembles the style of Windows Vista.

Best Way to tag your mp3 music collection

Everton from Connected Internet posted a nice article where he is detailing his steps to add tags and cover artwork to his mp3 collection using a few selected freeware programs and iTunes. He suggests to use Picard for the tagging process because Picard is able to add most tags of known albums automatically.

The only information that are not added by Picard are the cover artwork and the genre. It is understandable that the genre is not being added because it is sometimes difficulty to select a genre that everyone would be comfortable with. Itunes will be used to add the cover artwork right from the iTunes store.

Optimize Firefox for Widescreen Monitors

Firefox is not optimized for widescreen or dualscreen monitors leaving lots of empty space when surfing the Internet. Jonathon Weare came up with a solid way to change the layout of Firefox to suit the needs of widescreen monitors by moving several elements of Firefox to different positions.

His first idea was to move the bar with all the tabs from the top location into the sidebar which adds two benefits. The first benefit is that the space on the sides is used to store elements that are needed for browsing while the second is that the tab bar is removed from the top location adding more space for the actual website.

tv shows

Want to watch TV Shows online? Use TV Links

TV Links is a very comprehensive up to date website that offers links to hundreds of TV shows, movies, cartoons, anime, music videos and sport shows. The main url brings you to the listing of all available TV shows which start with all episodes of 24 and end with Zoey 101.

desktop tower defense

Desktop Tower Defense Upgrade

The popular Desktop Tower Defense game has been upgraded from version 1 to 1.5 bringing new excitement and frustration to the already excellent game. Several new enemies and towers have been included that make the game more enjoyable although I think that it did not rise in difficulty that much.

I can only talk about the medium mode that I tried today which I passed at first try and the challenge mode to beat 100 levels which is tough as always. I was not able to beat the challenge mode though, it becomes extremely difficulty at levels 75+ at least with the strategies that I have tried.

The five most embarassing ways to die in an FPS

I had a good laugh when I read the article "The five most embarassing ways to die in an FPS" which describes five entertaining (for the others) and embarassing (for the one being killed) ways to die in first person shooters.

I have been playing pro level Unreal Tournament for about two years and it was always a pleasure to witness an embarassing death. Unreal Tournament however was not the only game that I was playing. I also enjoyed Quake 3 Arena, Counter Strike (Source) and many other PC shooters.

Find out which audio or video codec is missing

Nothing is more frustrating than to witness that the movie that you downloaded for hours won't play on your computer. Maybe there is only black screen, no audio, blurred pictures or out of sync audio and video. The most likely cause for this behavior is that a audio or video codec is missing on your system.

Apple iPhone commercials

I did not pay much attention to the Apple iPhone hype until now but today the newest commercial for the iPhone caught my attention on Youtube. The first thing that struck my mind was that the navigation was blazing fast. As you might know a multi-touchscreen is being used for writing and navigating through menus.

It looks more like a multimedia gadget with phone capabilities than the other way round which I personally do not like that much. I like slim, fast gadgets that are not that bloated than the iPhone. I would never for instance watch Youtube videos on such a Gadget, does not make sense to me.