Archive for the ‘Tools I Use!’ Category

My Outlook PST file recently reached 3GB in size and, while Outlook will still performing ok, I needed to reduce the size of the file to keep the size of my nightly backup reasonable. 

I removed old and large messages from the Sent and Deleted messages folders and estimated that I freed up at least 1/3 of my used space.  I tried compacting the file through Outlook and through the Control Panel Mail applet.  The compaction finished too quickly and the file remained the same size.

This was solved by rebooting and going directly to the Control Panel Mail applet (double click Personal folders line and click the Compact Now button) before opening Outlook.  My PST file is now 1.2GB.

I hope this helps someone else.


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Life has been getting harder for owners of small mail servers on the internet.  Costly software upgrades and restrictive anti-spam policies at the major servers have made running your own mail server a very expensive proposition.  Yes, there are many companies providing outsourced e-mail services, but they are either expensive or very limited.  Then, along comes Google for Domains!  Free & feature rich, it makes you wonder why you bothering with the hassle of maintaining your own server.  Key features that we needed in order to switch:

  • The maximum file attachment size is 10Gb
  • Reliable spam filtering
  • Nicknames or aliases for each account name
  • Domain aliases (e.g, harriergrp.com can be aliased to harriergroup.com)
  • 2 GB mailbox limit
  • Access from Outlook via POP3/SMTP
  • Web based accesss
  • Option to include all domain users in mail address book
  • Import/export contract lists into web tool
  • Personal lists in web tool
  • Mail lists
  • Virus scanning


  • Personalized startup page makes it easy to set up an quick intranet
  • Shared calendars (browser managed)

The only question is who to contact when (if?) you have problems.  It is nice to go onto your own server and see exactly what happened to a message.  Then again, we may never have that need again!

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Windows Live Writer (Beta)

I just downloaded a copy of the new Windows Live Writer beta program because I have not been that happy with the simple HTML editor provided by WordPress.  I have been spending more time than should be necessary to edit posts with sample code snippets in them such as this:

private void Page_Load(object sender, System.EventArgs e)
if (!IsPostBack)

“return confirm(\”Are you sure you want to delete?\”);”);

“return confirm(\”Are you sure you want to cancel?\”);”);

While Windows Live Writer seems to be less glitchy than the WordPress editor, Live Writer also lost my tab indentations when I posted in the text.  Unfortunately, I still need to manually insert the proper indenation (or replace the tabs with spaces before inserting).

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