Category Archives: Technology

Malware and Viruses

Who do you blame?holy-crap
I can never really decide where the bulk of the blame lands when it comes to malware and viruses on the windows platform. Of course, the authors of the viruses and malware suck, but after that how much blame lands on MS? Personally, I’ve had little trouble. When I have cleaned other machines it is always traceable down to a stupid “yes” click or shady install of some malware. #malware  #viruses   #microsoftwindows

My Malware/Virus removal toolbox *
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I always download from the original software vendor’s site to avoid fakes and add-on crapware. Here are some of my primary removal tools:
AdwCleaner, https://toolslib.net/downloads/viewdownload/1-adwcleaner/
MalwareBytes, https://www.malwarebytes.org/antimalware/
HitmanPro, http://www.surfright.nl/en/hitmanpro
HijackThis, https://sourceforge.net/projects/hjt/
* The best way to be sure your system is clean is to reinstall the OS, but very few people want to do that out of the gate.

I always run a realtime virus scanner like ESET. You may want to try their free online scanner in a pinch http://www.eset.com/us/online-scanner/ . Your best defense is knowing the software’s source is safe before you click install. Microsoft Security Essentials seems to be pretty good too (and free) but I recently cleaned a machine that supposedly had it running. Of course, no virus software that I know of is going to protect you from manually installing bad software.

What’s the difference between a domain forwarder and an alias?

(1) There are 2 typical types of multi-URL setups: the Forwarder and Alias.
(2) Both types will involve changes at the registrar; creating an alias involves some setting adjustments at the host server.

The forwarder:
There is an existing website at www.SiteA.com and you have another url www.SiteB.com. If you want people to type in www.SiteB.com and get forwarded to www.SiteA.com (and see www.SiteA.com in the address bar) this is a forwarder.

The alias:
A visitor types in www.SiteB.com and they see all the content from www.SiteA.com but the www.SiteB.com address is the one seen in the address bar. Some hosting systems call this a “parked” domain.

Years ago I liked aliases but with the changes in search engine optimization I generally recommend forwarders over aliases these days.

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#forwarder #dns #aliases #parked domains

NET NEUTRALITY, the open internet needs your support

What would you say if you Electric Company wanted to charge you more to power your TV than they charge to power your oven? What if the electricity you used for air conditioning was twice the price of the electricity used to power lighting? You would probably say electricity is electricity. You would see the notion as preposterous and you’d demand the electric company stop charging different rates based on the purpose of your electricity usage.

What would you say it the electric company wanted to charge you for your electricity and then also wanted charge Whirlpool (for the service you’ve already paid for) because refrigerators use so much power…. AND if Whirlpool didn’t want to pay they would selectively make Whirlpool appliances work badly for you.

In many ways this is exactly what Internet Service Providers like Comcast want to do. They want to charge websites to get full speed delivery to you. In fact, in many ways this is already going on. Did you know Netflix is paying Comcast for a fast connection? Consequently, my streaming from Amazon and Google is comparatively poor.

This is bad in so many ways, but the most obvious is that it will block innovation. In many ways the internet is a great equalizer. It helps even the smallest of companies compete, but those small companies will have a much tougher time if they can’t pay to get into the fast lane.

Everyone who uses the internet needs to take this time to voice their opinion and take a stand against “Cable Company F#*#kery” at
FCC.gov/comments
and don’t forget the CAPS!!!

This should be required viewing: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO): Net Neutrality

See also,  www.huffingtonpost.com

 

Miss the windows start button?

I brought back the windows 7 start menu on my son’s windows 8 machine with Classic Shell. I even used my own logo for the start button. It was easy and works really well.

Microsoft made a big deal about bringing back the start button with the windows 8.1 update and it was nearly worthless.  All it does is take you to the metro start page if you click it. Well, it does give you some handy stuff if you right click it, but it was sort of like Microsoft said, “You want the start button back? Here you go, now go to the f#@#^ng metro start page and stop whining”.

classic shell desktop

Windows 8.1 desktop with Classic Shell

The Classic Shell start button is nicely done and an easy & free install. If you miss the windows start button, you should give it a try.
http://www.classicshell.net/  #classicshell #windows81

Leo Laporte discusses his website design cost and development time

On a recent episode of The Tech Guy (Show 865: http://twit.tv/show/the-tech-guy/865 at the 34:50 mark)  Leo Laporte discusses the wide range of website costs, development time and the price he’s paying for phase one of The Tech Guy Labs website’s redesign.

reference:
http://techguylabs.com
http://techguylabs.com/radio/ShowNotes/Show865#toc13

Google Voice now has global spam filtering!!!

I’ve been putting my google voice number out there to clients for sometime via my email signature. It is by far the best way to reach me. I actively route it to wherever I am. However, I haven’t publicized via online listings, ads, literature and business cards, because I don’t want it bombarded with phone SPAM. My verizon numbers, that I’ve been using for 15 years, sometimes get as many as 10 unsolicited calls per day in spite of me telling everyone to take me off their calling list and being on the national do not call list.

This is exactly what I needed to start pushing our google voice number in everything and all mediums.

Why can’t verizon evolve more rapidly and put customers first? You know they used to charge $49 to 200 for DSL 10 0r 12 years ago (historical ADSL pricing screenshot below). My SDSL was $199 for years then I got it for $99 through a subcontracted reseller. At the time, I couldn’t get the $99 “deal” by buying it through Verizon. They sat on their hands and watched nearly every one of their home customers go to comcast for just $29 per month, because they wouldn’t lower their price. Their historic behavior is the whole reason I haven’t switched to FiOS.

So in conclusion, “Yeah Google!!!” and “Verizon Hurry Up”. You need to change faster because the world will move on without you… just like they did when you were providing DSL for more than the competition!

I try not to be a google evangelist but sometimes can’t help myself 🙂

ref. http://www.google.com/support/voice/bin/answer.py?answer=115089

Verizon aDSL pricing circa 2000

Verizon aDSL pricing circa 2000

How are you getting online content to your TV?

I have a Sony Blu-ray (view at amazon.com), a Wii and the Xbox that can all get netflix and other services. The Sony is pretty cool and I use it pretty often. However, I primarily use an Acer AspireRevo (view at amazon.com) with a cool Lenovo Multimedia Remote (view at amazon.com) to push Netflix, Amazon, Pandora, Hulu, Podcasts and other online content to our 42″ Toshiba TV (view at amazon.com). The revo even has an HDMI out.

I use wifi to stream my online content and have been typically very happy, but I’m sure if I bothered to run a CAT5 it would be even better. Oh and I shouldn’t forget to mention that my Tivo Series II(s) can also connect to many of these online services but they are way too tedious.

Privacy Protection through your registrar

If you own a domain you should maintain forwarders (email address aliases) for your addresses in the public domain record and direct them anywhere necessary. People tend to mistakenly sign up for “Privacy Protection” from their registrar because we all value privacy, right? Privacy is a good thing, who wouldn’t embrace it?

However, what most of us really want in regard to our domain registration is protection from spam. We can quickly direct a forwarder anywhere temporarily or permanently, direct it to as many people as needed to keep everyone in the loop, and change it in an instant if it starts getting spam.

I would only recommend the privacy protection to someone who would like to hide their ownership/identity from others. Spam protection is best done with a disposable forwarder.

Apparently old search engines don’t die

HotBot.com ScreenshotApparently old search engines don’t die, people just stop using them.

Seeing that Cuil.com had gone offline after some of the good work they were doing, and seeing some of the things they are working on at Blekko http://bit.ly/cgDX5E makes me wonder if anyone can truly compete with google’s dominance. It is surprising that so many of the old search engines, who had previously built a name, are still online.