Saturday, September 15, 2007

Micro$oft is in control of your computer?

Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols writes in an opinions article, that MicroSoft is sneaking updates into our XP SP2 and later Windows computers, even with Auto-Updates switched off. See the article linked above for the rest of the story.

Attacking multicore CPUs

Somebody gave a talk about this a few months ago at my Linux User's Group. I missed it and I'm sorry I did, now that I have the beginnings of awareness on the topic.

We're always talking about the evolution of the threats against our computers, but rarely in terms of the basic engineering of our systems. While this could be just one more thing to lay awake worrying about, it seems to me it is an opportunity to learn more about the relationship between the evolution (for which read growth, as well) of our computing resources and how that leaves opportunity for security vulnerabilities to surface and be exploited.

Mainly, though, I think this article is a good illustration of how and why we, the user communities, must keep abreast so we can adequately use the security information and tools we are given wisely. Things change in all sorts of ways and the fundamental changes wrought by multi-core and multi-processor systems must be accounted for in our practices.


Wednesday, September 12, 2007

How To: Remove an Internal/External Liquid CPU Cooler

Here's a quick one page how-to with pictures at Extreme Tech which takes most of the mystery out of this [previously dreaded] subject.

I have recently done this a couple times and found an even easier way on both those systems. I opened the tubing at the lowest point, clipped it to a bucket with a clothes pin and went to lunch. When I got back, the entire thing was empty and almost dry.


Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Black screen of darkness to haunt Vista pirates

Update: THIS IS A HOAX!!!!! It was revealed early Tuesday that Microsoft has made NO changes to Vista's anti-piracy measures, thus rendering all my pontification below senseless and ridiculous. MS confirms my foolishness for being taken in as well as the no changes to Vista parts.

Vista's "reduced functionality mode" is now live for everyone. I sure hope MS can manage this correctly. The recent WGA outage does not give me hope. If they can, they will make a lot more money. If they can't manage it well, they will lose an incredible amount of customer loyalty (or tolerance, as the case may be).

The issue will be false positives. If they can avoid them in the largest part, they will have done well and the authentication system will be at least tolerated. A fair number of accusatory messages sent to legitimate owners will bring everything from approbation to lawsuits. It is all down to how well it works.

Make no mistake about it; this is one of the largest corporate gambles in a long time.


Online games and fraud: using games as bait

Sergey Golovanov condenses the online games threat profile into one long page at Kaspersky Labs' web site. I found it informative, easy to read and not all that long. I recommend it.

Not that I am so involved with online gaming. I am not at all. But I get asked about it all the time and it is my intention to provide this link to my questioners as long as I think it relevant. Nothing else I have seen so far does this good a job of outlining the way things currently stand.


Monday, September 10, 2007

Barcelona's out, and the "reviews" are... out

John Stokes, writing for Ars Technica, explains what is known about AMD's new quad-core cpus, what is not known and why early reviews are, at least in the large part, bunk. It's a short read, quite informative and pleasant.


Sunday, September 09, 2007

OnComputers Radio show Podcast 09-09-07

This is the On Computers Radio show podcast for 09-09-07. You can listen live every Sunday from 10AM to 1PM Pacific thats 1PM to 4PM Eastern. Join us for the live show and chat. If you prefer, you can download the same MP3 file here via ftp.

Tech Tips Blog - Computer Tips, Computer Blog

Tech Tips Blog - Computer Tips, Computer Blog
Sunday, September 09, 2007

Tech Tip 135 - RSS Choose Your News

What is RSS and why should I be subscribing to this ‘Really Simple Syndication”

Wikipedia defines RSS as the following: “RSS makes it possible for people to keep up with their favorite web sites in an automated manner that’s easier than checking them manually.”

As great as the internet and blogs are you only have so much time in a day to go out and check all your favorite websites and blogs to see if there have been any updates or new juicy information. So what is one to do?

This video is courtesy of, which shows a fantastic tutorial explaining what is RSS, and why it is necessary for those who enjoy spending time online, but are looking for a more effecient process of doing so!

This is from an email I receive from one of the links on the bottom of the I think MissM posted the video from the site.



I make no guarantees if this will be working. So consider that your warning. :)

Express Yourself LIVE


The Blue Screen of Felony Convictions

Recently on this blog, I wrote You Have the Right to Read Your Accuser. In this, I argued that any software with substantial risk to harm your life or liberty must be open source. I specifically mentioned some breathalyzer software that people were fighting to see the source code of. Though the Florida legislature and many regional prosecutors obviously feel that the breathalyzer company’s rights were the New Jersey Supreme Court ordered that source code to a popular breathalyzer be revealed. The resulmore important the individual rights, ts, if you’ll pardon the pun, are breathtaking.

go read the rest.

The Blue Screen of Felony Convictions - O'Reilly ONLamp Blog


Links from the Gregg Zone!

1) I am going to start the week with a quick revisit to an old problem with a new link. To be truthful while I remember this subject coming up on the show in the past, and I remember finding a couple of links to help, I cannot remember if I put them in my blog. Any way if you need help recycling any of our old electronics this site is pretty easy, just enter your zip code and you get a list of the closest, with a break down on the details

2) Ever wonder how long you have left to live, here is a calculator that will give you an estimate based on your lift style, health, and other mitigating factors. Another advantage is to point out how much each of these factors can effect your longevity, giving you an idea of which areas of change might give you the best results.

3) Are you keeping up with the bee problem? Here is a quick read that looks like it might shed some light

4) Last site for the week is a video site, I know there are a lot of them out there, but I found this one unique. Check it out there is quite a bit there I found interesting.