Blog: tools

There's a free utility I heard about from Steve Gibson on one of his podcasts that I have found useful.  It's called KatMouse - it mouse wheel-enables anything that scrolls.  The main reason I use it is I don't have to give focus to a window - just move the pointer over it and scroll.  Whatever you're hovering over will scroll - even if the window isn't on top.  You can find more details and download the application at


WinDirStat, Windows Directory Statistics, has been around a long time and is still being updated.  WinDirStat is a disk usage statistics viewer and cleanup tool for Microsoft Windows.  Some of us have used Spacemonger, which presents a treemap view of disk usage.  Spacemonger’s biggest advantage over WinDirStat is that it is faster.  Here are some advantages that WinDirStat has over Spacemonger:

  • Displays directories and files in a hierarchal list.
  • Easy analysis by file type – a pane lists them, and it will highlight all files of that type in the treemap view.
  • Color coding based on file type.
  • You can just only scan a folder (I have used subst with Spacemonger many times). [more]

I suggest you just try it out and start clicking on stuff.  Be sure to check the configuration options (you will want to turn off the Pacman Animation).

The most recent version is packaged as an installer. However, I actually extracted the files and it runs fine.


I've recently been trying out the PuTTY Connection Manager and I think it's a very useful tool. What I find most useful is the ability to store the connection information for all of the routers/switches that you connect to regularly similar to VissionApp or RoyalTS does for terminal servers. It is currently a work in progress but the beta version is pretty stable. You can download it for free here:


In troubleshooting a SBS 2003 Server, it was discovered that the system drive was almost out of space.  Upon further investigation, most of the disk space was being consumed in the %WINDIR%\Installer folder.  In that folder were numerous MSI files that were over 100 MB each over and over. 

It was noted that earlier in the week, an update for Backup Exec kept trying to install and failed until the server was rebooted by the customer.  After rebooting the server, the install took, but all of those failed attempts seemingly left these orphaned MSI files created each hour the server tried to install the update.

In order to clean out the orphaned files in this folder, you will need to run “MSIZAP.exe T!”.  You can obtain the MSIZAP file from:;en-us;290301.  Syntax for running MSIZAP can also be found here: [more]

After running this program, it deleted over half of the files in the Installer directory and reclaimed approximately 10 GB of hard disk space.  It was noted that the duplicate 100 MB+ files were removed.


During IT audits, we routinely see banks granting all or some of their users local administrator rights on their PCs.  They are usually forced into allowing this level of access due to some software that will not work correctly without local administrator rights.  However, they can mitigate some of the risk by using a utility called DropMyRights.

In a recent Security Now! podcast, Steve Gibson talked about the DropMyRights utility.  It was written by a Microsoft engineer.  It allows you to run specific programs with less rights than your user account normally has.  For example, if you are given local administrator rights because the core banking software requires it, you can use DropMyRights to help protect yourself when running web browsers or your email client.  Simply create a shortcut for each program using DropMyRights in the command line.  For example, you could use the following command line to run Internet Explorer under a non-admin user context: [more]

C:\utilities\dropmyrights.exe "c:\program files\internet explorer\iexplore.exe"

Links to the utility and supporting documentation can be found on Steve Gibson’s website:


There is a small, simple utility called clip, which takes whatever is given on it’s input stream and places it on the Windows clipboard.  There are many useful things this can be used for.  Here are a couple of things that save a lot of time and work for me.

1)  Add the clipboard to your Sendto menu.  Make a command file, like clipboard.cmd, that has this command in it.

clip < %1

Then create a shortcut to this command file in %userprofile%\sendto.  Then you can right click on a file and send it to your clipboard.

2)  Generate passwords to your clipboard.  I use wapg by Adel I. Mirzazhanov ( by running a command file like this: [more]

@echo off
set /p PWSIZE="Enter size of password to generate: "
wapg -M SCNL -E"?!|" -n1 -a1 -m%PWSIZE% -x%PWSIZE% | clip

Just think about all the things that you can pipe to your clipboard!

If you are using XP, you will have to copy clip.exe from a Windows 2003 server (%windir%/system32) to your machine.

I would like to mention that using a clipboard extension program will also let you see what you are about to paste.  Ditto will even let you edit it right there before pasting it.