Archive for May 2012

Windows 8 Final Preview is Out

When the “Consumer Preview” came out, I installed it, tried it and in a couple of weeks UNinstalled it.  It wasn’t stable (meaning it CRASHED a lot) so I removed it after I couldn’t stand it any more.

I’m still not convinced the readers of my blog will like Windows 8, but in the next couple of weeks I’ll install it and see how well it works with existing components. 

One bit of good news is that if you buy a new PC between June 2 and January 31st 2013, you can get the upgrade to Windows 8 Professional for only $15.  Personally, I think it’s because they realize this may not be a popular upgrade, similar to how Vista was not a popular upgrade from Windows XP.

If you’re still using Windows XP, you’re on borrowed time because come April 2014 Windows XP will no longer be supported or updated by Microsoft, so you’ll need to move up.  Move up soon and get on Windows 7.  Most computer still running XP can run Windows 7.  You’ll probably be able to upgrade to Windows 7 later after Windows 8 comes online but I don’t know for how long.

A Blonde Password

imageYes, I guess it’s possible.  A client sent this to me….

 

During a recent password audit by Google,  it was found that an Arizona blonde was using the following password:
 
"MickeyMinniePlutoHueyLouieDeweyDonaldGoofyPhoenix"
 
When asked why she had such a long password, she rolled her eyes and said:  "Hellooooo! It has to be at least 8 characters long and include at least one capital."

Deal: 23” HP Monitor for $115

HP 2311x 23 inch Diagonal LED MonitorI am NO fan of HP’s computers or printers, but I really do like their monitors.  Right now you can get direct from HP their 23” LED back-lit monitor for only $115.49 with FREE SHIPPING.  When you go to their web site the sale price is $149.99.  During checkout you add the coupon code ACCS73419 in the cart and the price drops to $115.49 – now we’re talking a deal.  So if you’ve been in the market for a nice size monitor, here one for a great price:  http://goo.gl/hXdwg

Don’t Listen to the F.B.I. – They’re Idiots!

OK, if I’m lucky this will just be the START of their file on me, but they’ve messed up and now have everybody panicking about something that is partially their fault to begin with.

A few weeks ago the FBI let the word out that they had cracked an Estonian ring that was responsible for planting a virus on computers that would redirect them from the normal DNS servers (think of them as the phone books of the Internet) to their own “special” DNS servers that for example when you typed in www.MyBank.com it would take you to a site that LOOKED like your banks but wasn’t.  Of course by the time you figured that out they already had your login and password. 

The problem is they cracked this ring of thieves LAST YEAR in November!

Real quickly, when you type in for example www.Google.com, your computer needs to know the ADDRESS of Google so you can go there.  Your computer goes to a DNS server (usually the one provided by your Internet service provider) and that server will tell your computer to go to something like 74.125.227.5 (one of Google’s address on the Internet.)  All this happens in a split second and poof – you’re off to Google.

So what the FBI did was replace the bad guys servers with servers of their own.  That way when they shut down the bad guys’ servers it didn’t “break the Internet” for people infected with the virus.  However, the FBI didn’t tell anyone until recently, because in July they plan to turn off their servers, and anyone who still has the virus at that time will try to use a phone book that no longer exists and so their Internet will be “broken”.

A conspiracy theorist might be troubled that every site an infected user has gone to the last six months has been using a FBI server to get there.  But I digress…

While this made news a few weeks ago, Google is about to advise its users about the possibility of losing their Internet, so it will probably make the news again, so don’t panic when you hear about it.

When the FBI turns off its servers in July, those still infected won’t be able to get to web sites, so here’s how to check your computer:

Go to this web site: http://goo.gl/55HLW, it should immediately report that you are “green” and are looking up addresses correctly.  If it shows up “red”, then download and run this tool from Kaspersky which should remove the infection: http://goo.gl/sKQ0h

If you were infected, rest easy knowing that you’ve been in the caring hands of the FBI the last half year, and I’m sure NOBODY respects your privacy more than the FBI.  Excuse me while I check my phone for bugs now.

Smile

When You’re Away From Home…

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Adobe Photoshop Elements and Premiere Elements Bundle for $94

imageIf you have photos that need touching up (or a lot of work) and video clips you would like to put into a more polished presentation, whether for YouTube or creating a DVD, then here is a great buy on the latest versions of Adobe’s Photoshop Elements and Premiere Elements.

It’s on sale at Buy.com with free shipping: http://goo.gl/IAt6F

Windows Frozen

imageAn older woman sent a text message to her husband at work:
"Windows at home frozen.  What should I do?"
He responded back by typing, "First spray some de-icer, then use the hair dryer to blow hot air."
15 minutes later she calls him on the phone and says "I did exactly what you said and now the computer won’t work at ALL!"

Deal: Epson Workforce 645 on Sale at OfficeMax

imageOfficeMax has the Epson Workforce 645 printer on sale for $99.  This is currently my favorite all-in-one inkjet printer for home use.  It is wireless so all you need is an electrical outlet somewhere convenient, connect it to your router and you’re ready to go.  It holds 250 sheets of paper and can automatically print on both sides of paper.  Of course it scans, copies and faxes, and it has a 30 sheet document feeder.  It’s fast, works with Macs and PC’s and even your mobile devices.

Here’s the link: http://goo.gl/TvMXP

If Microsoft Calls – Don’t Answer!

imageThis scam has been going around for at least a year now and I’ve written about it before, but this week in 2 days I had 2 clients tell me that they got a call from “Microsoft” saying they’ve detected a problem with their computer.  I promise, Microsoft will NEVER call you to tell you there is a problem with your computer.  The people calling are overseas and will attempt to frighten you into going to your computer and downloading a file from a website onto your computer, they will then ask for your credit card number.  These are BAD guys, don’t do anything they say.

If you want to have fun and play with them by wasting their time and money, then you can play along to keep them on the phone but DON’T actually do anything on the computer or give them a real credit card number.  Make one up.

If you don’t want to waste YOUR time, then just hang up on them and if you can, just block the number so they can’t call you again.

There Be Viruses Among Us!

imageI’ve have THREE clients this week get viruses on their computers.  I’m not typing this because I’m exercising my fingers.  PLEASE listen – this is how to AVOID getting infected in the first place, and will save you getting scolded by me about what you DIDN’T do. 

Today is the second Tuesday of the month – that means updates from Microsoft will be coming your way, and that also makes it an excellent time to remind you to keep your eye out throughout the month for updates from Adobe (Acrobat Reader and Flash) and Oracle (Java.)

Don’t forget – these are SECURITY fixes. If you DON’T do them, you’re giving the bad guys an easy back door into your system. There are as many as eleven different flaws being patched this month, so be on the look out for them.

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Three ways your smartphone can hurt your career

imageTech Republic’s Toni Bowers has written an article on how the improper use of your smartphone can actually hurt your in your business or your career. 

Follow this like to the article: http://goo.gl/J9qMd

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