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

Junction, Create Symbolic Links

If you are using linux you might know the symbolic link functionality which allows you to create a (symbolic) link between two directories. A little freeware tool called junction from sysinternals adds this functionality to windows.

Viewing Hidden Comments on Myspace

This has been around for some days but its still worth an article. Myspace users have the option to hide their comments and friendlist from other users. With an easy workaround it´s possible to view them even though the user did activate the hidding feature.

Risks of selling your old pc

A study conducted by Professor Martin Gill of the University of Leicester came to the conclusion that second hand computers pose a great risk of fraud and identity theft. They purchased six computers in the course of their study from various second hand channels. Six computers may not seem to justify the results but it can be seen as an indicator. Half of them had not been securely wiped while one had not been wiped at all. Two of the three contained enough information for identity theft.

Building a better Password

Most people tend to use passwords that they can rememeber easily. If you take a deeper look many use the same password for most of their password protected activities which is a high security risk. Break one, get access to all.

Ten unknown firefox extensions

Everton from connectedinternet.co.uk compiled a list of ten firefox extensions that don´t get glamorised that much. The list includes some extensions that I never heard before, like the Colorful Tabs Extension. Make sure you head over to his site and take a look at the compilation.

play c-64 games online

Play Commodore 64 games Online

The c-64 was my first computer. I had an atari 2600 before and it seemed like a quantum leep at that time. The C-64 had many classic games that I enjoyed playing: Archon, Boulder Dash and Pirates for instance. You know have the chance to play some of the alltime classics of that era in your browser. The website c64s.com is the Eldorado for everyone who wants to play that classic games again or take a look at games of a time long forgotten.

Make your windows os faster

I´am cautious when I read another article that claims to speed up your windows operating system by simply tweaking some settings in the registry. I learned the hard way that your os sometimes becomes unstable and you will have to restore it or do a fresh install. The article "Make your windows fast as never before" is one of those articles that makes this claim.

SmartPc Recovery Tools

Sometimes you delete something and realize later that you still need the file(s) that you´ve deleted before. Its easy to recover them if they are still in your trashbin, but you need special tools to recover files that have been deleted permanently under windows.

11 things to do after a hack

Lets assume your system has been hacked. What steps would you undertake after the hacking attempt ? The article written at techtarget.com tries to answer the question and presents a checklist of things to do after being someone hacked into your system. Its more of a checklist for corporate networks than for individual computers but it would not hurt to take a look and probably get some new ideas that you did not think about.

Smart Ftp 2.0

The free ftp software Smart Ftp 2.0 has been released and is available for download at the developers website. Changes include a new graphical user interface with tabs, a new local and remote browser and support for 64 bit windows operating systems. If you are looking for a free ftp program give it a try, it might be exactly what you are looking for.

Phishing Explained

Phishing, which is a construct of the words Password and Fishing, becomes more and more common on the internet. Many people recieve daily mails from sites like ebay and paypal but also from financial sites like citibank that look authentic and direct you to a website that looks like a copy of the original site. They "phish" your login data or credit card information from that fake website.

Protecting your Search Privacy

Searchenginewatch published a rather large article about protecting your search privacy today. They provide a step-by-step guide how your search privacy gets exposed from your desktop to the sites you visit. They divided the article into six chapters beginning with Search Privacy On Your Own Computer and ending with a conclusion that gives you valuable tips on how to protect your search privacy.

From Dos/Windows to Linux Howto

When I tried to switch for the first time from windows to linux I felt left alone. The web was not what it now uses to be, tutorials and help documents were scarce and one had to have a friend who could help or try the trial and error way to get linux installed and configured. Linux is becoming more user friendly and lots of tutorials and help sites pop up that help beginners and guide them through the basic installation and configuration process.

thunderbird email headers

Tracing an Email

I posted yesterday an article about tracing an hacker, today I give you one about tracing an email. The first thing you have to do is to enable email headers. The site shows you how to do so using gmail, yahoo and msn. All software products should support this feature as well. Email Headers show you additional information about the email, for example a ip is shown.

How To Trace A Hacker

This is a nice beginners tutorial that tells you how to trace people who try to break into your computer. It covers lots of explanations to questions like "How do these people find their victim?" and "What the phrases TCP/UDP actually mean".

Your keyboard is Dirtier than your toilet

If this topic did not catch your attention at once then none will. Dr. Charles Gerba from the university of Arizona found out in a study that measured normal bacterial levels inside offices across America that the average desk harbors 400 times more bacteria than the average toilet seat.

Web Proxy List January 2006

Many of you told me that I should create a new list of websites that are running webproxies. Today I finally had the time to compile this new list, hope everyone is satisfied with the result.

Maybe it´s a good start to explain why someone would need a webproxy ( or a proxy ). Some countries, for example china, iran and germany, ban certain websites and you can´t view them using your normal internet connection. A proxy on the other hand could be able to display the website correctly and you recieve all the information you want to access.

Top 100 free software for Windows XP

Freeware: I always try to use freeware or open source software whenever its possible. 100-downloads.com lists 100 of the best on their page listed neatly in categories like audio, imaging and security. They list lots of freeware tools that I´am using and some that I did not know about and will definatly try out.

Automatically back up your hard drive

It´s always a good idea to backup your hard drive(s) every now and then to prevent data loss. The guys, eh Gina, over at lifehacker wrote a nice article. It only describes the procedure for windows computers, all you need is an external hard drive, a ftp server and the freeware tool Syncback.

25 reasons to convert to Linux

I´am like most of you using windows xp as my primary operating system. I always pondered if I should make a complete change to linux, make a dual boot system or stay with windows. Every decision would have advantages but also disadvantages.

Ten great Firefox extensions for 1.5

I´ve been using firefox for a long time and can recommend it to anyone who is still using Microsoft Internet Explorer. Besides being more secure firefox users have the ability to install extensions, little addons that add to the functionality of the browser. I collected ten nice extensions that are worth a try if you are using firefox. All work with the latest build 1.5 and versions before, of course.

Fix my XP

Fix my XP is a site that has lots of windows tips that are especially useful for beginners. Tips that explain how to remove unused dlls from memory, fine tune your lcd display or how to open large folders faster can be found on the site. Take a look, you might be suprised what you find.

Folder Size Freeware

Folder Size is a nice little freeware application that adds a new column to the details view of your windows explorer displaying the size of every folder that exists in the current directory. Its mighty helpful if you want to clean your hard drive. It shows exactly which folders contain the biggest files and its always a good idea to start cleaning there.

Password resetting and recovering techniques

There are several methods to reset and recover your windows administrators password. The fastest method is to use a freeware tool like Offline NT Password & Registry Editor or the linux live distribution Austrumi.

Convert Images to Text Images

I was not sure how to name the article appropriately. You can convert any image on your computer into a text image at text-image.com. The result looks great, just take a look at the sample image that I reduced in size. The normal size looks much clearer and brighter.

Speedfan Freeware

I have a very noisy fan at the back of my pc tower. It spins to fast and therefor makes to much noises. There are various ways to reduce a fans speed and one of them is using the free software speedfan.

Privacy Browse Freeware

Kenny created a new little tool that might be helpful for some of you. Its called Privacy Browse, a freeware tool that uses those free proxy sites to surf the web. Download privacy browse from ghacks.net, unrar it to a location of youre choice and run it by double-clicking on Privacy.exe.

10 things you should know before every Linux installation

If you want to make the switch from windows to linux you should know some common differences between the two operating systems. A techrepublic article describes ten differences that every new linux user should know before making the switch.

5 Best Freeware Games of 2005

There have been lots of great freeware games in 2005 and I decided to present you the five best ones. The games include strategy games, action games, ego shooters and adventures. Should be something for every taste. The freeware scene has developed in the last years producing bigger and better looking games that can sometimes even be compared to commercial products that have been released this year.

Home PC Firewall Guide

I know that some of you are using a firewall and therefor the home pc firewall guide site might be worth a visit. The website has more sections than I can list here so i stick with some interesting ones and leave the rest to you. To start with a good one, Installig Security Products, a guide on how to install security type software on a new windows operating system.

archive org movies

Archive.org Moving Image Archive

If you have nothing to do pay the moving image archive site of archive.org a visit. They offer more than 26000 movies to watch and download for free. Everything is neatly categorized including categories like open source movies, featured films and prelinger archive. You have lots of old movies from the black and white era but also new ones that were made with computers.

Wallpaper Sites

I would like to give you the links to two great wallpaper sites that have almost no advertisment on their sites, unlike many other wallpaper sites that seem to bombard you with ads and popups. The first is joejoe.biz, a nice site if you are looking for nature wallpapers. He has some pretty interesting close-ups of animals and plants on his site.

How to save websites to your hard drive

There are several ways to save a website and they largely depend on your needs. If you only want to save textual information you could be finished by a simple copy and paste job. If you want to preserve the links you need to save it as html. Most browsers have the option to save a website locally but what if you need more than one page or would like the information of the links as well ?

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.