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How can you better run your home network? Mac hed: Get it together dek: how can you better run your home network?

Time to get organized? Here are some updates to applications that will help your home network run faster and more efficiently.

Vicomsoft’s SurfDoubler will make home networking smoother and faster, allowing home users to share one modem with up to three other computers while using only one account. Packets are routed when they arrive, as opposed to waiting for the next timer call.

Vicomsoft’s version 7 extends VPN support, includes firewall options, and improves capabilities for both single and group users. The program is a 168-hour trial, and users are required to fill out a form prior to downloading. The full version costs $54.99.

Netscape’s latest browser–version 6.1–is now available as a free download. The latest update improves on Netscape 6 and also offers Mac OS X compatibility. Netscape 6.1 includes Netscape Navigator, Netscape Mail, Netscape Instant Messenger, Netscape Composer, Netscape Address Book, Nullsoft Winamp for audio playback, RealPlayer8, Macromedia Flash, improved security and privacy features, and more. The browser suite can be downloaded from Netscape’s site.

Add a Windows-style taskbar to the bottom of your computer screen with Power On Software’s Action Go Mac. Action Go Mac makes it easier to launch and navigate among applications–just drag and drop the icons of your favorite applications, files, and folders onto the taskbar. The latest version includes support for Microsoft Office 2001, compatibility with Apple DVD Player and iMovie, and more. You can download the 30-day trial from Power On Software’s site.

Casady & Greene has released an update to its start-up file management and conflict testing program, Conflict Catcher. The update now has support for Mac OS 9.2 and all base sets, new file definitions, and several bug fixes. The program will help in troubleshooting extension-related problems, test for potentially conflicting files, scan damaged files and folders to find the source of a recurring crash or freeze, or just clue users in on what various file extensions mean. The demo version is available at www.casadyg.com.

PageSpinner, an HTML editing tool by Optima System, is now available for download in a demo version. PageSpinner gives users the option of entering HTML code manually or letting the program code Web pages automatically–a bonus for anyone not well versed in HTML. The latest version–3.1–now includes improved Mac OS X compatibility, previews of local Server Side Include files, translucent dragging, support for HTML 3.2 and 4, Netscape Navigator and Internet Explorer extensions, and a built-in Java generator. PageSpinner is an open-source project, which means that users can count on new and updated functions and helpful applications from the Internet. Once the demo expires, registration costs $29.95.

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