There’s a lot of free software out there, but just like with Instant Messaging software you have to install many of them to be flexible.
Several years ago I stumbled upon the VideoLAN Client (aka VLC) when researching methods to stream video from my ReplayTV (Tivo predecessor/clone) to my laptop as the files were in MPEG4 format and my previous clients didn’t support it.
I urge you to check it out as it’s an all in one solution, so that you don’t need all of that other bloat-ware installed.
P.S. – I should add that this plays most video and audio formats and is available on most platforms, not just Windows.
Since I’ve run a few small websites (like this one) out of my home for years, I’ve found it useful to run a DNS server inside of my firewall. Not only does this make it easier to maintain the websites, but it allows me to lock down security and increase performance of many of my applications.
I run a the following services that use DNS:
- Apache JAMES – mail server that does lookups to send email and filter inbound SPAM.
- Analog – web server log analysis.
- Apache HTTPD – web server, used to host websites, private domains used for internal purposes.
To make things more efficient, I currently have my DNS setup to forward all requests to OpenDNS, allowing for ‘adult’ website filters and analysis of DNS activity.
Some open-source/free DNS servers that I recommend: