Monthly Archives: September 2009

Cost? A *Minus* $58.64!

Cost? A *Minus* $58.64!

money2Any good professional knows that sometimes customers shoot themselves in the foot by skimping to try and save a few bucks, and sometimes they come out really well by actually calling the professional for some help.

Recently one of my customers purchased a new computer when her old computer died. She asked me to rescue the data, if possible, from the old computer.   (more…)

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Viruses Redirect Google Searches to Annoying Ads

Viruses Redirect Google Searches to Annoying Ads

google-redirect-virusOne of this year’s big adware scams has been redirecting search engine results to advertising sites.

For example, you do a Google search for “cell phones.” The first search result provides a link for a major cell phone company.

Only when you click on the link, you get an advertising site instead, trying to sell you something. After all, buying some Viagra was what you really had in mind when you searched for info on a cell phone, isn’t it?

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If You’re Buying a New Computer… (Windows 7, 32-bit vs. 64-bit, maximum memory)

If You’re Buying a New Computer… (Windows 7, 32-bit vs. 64-bit, maximum memory)

Three things.

Windows 7

windows7First, if you’re thinking about buying a new computer, I’d wait for Windows 7, which is due out 6 weeks from the date of this post. This new version of Windows arrives on store shelves on October 22, 2009.

Yes, you can buy a Vista system right now with a free upgrade to Windows 7. But why go through the hassle of the upgrade process? If you wait just a few weeks, you won’t have to.

32-Bit Versus 64-Bit

Second, you’re going to have a choice between a 32-bit system and a 64-bit system.  About half of the systems currently on the market right now are one; about half are the other.

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Geocaching: High Tech Family Fun on the Cheap

Geocaching: High Tech Family Fun on the Cheap

Our kids in front of Missouri's largest geocache container

Our kids in front of the “Jolly
Green Giant,” Missouri’s
largest geocache container

“Dad, would you have any time today to do some geocaching?”

That’s a question I’ve been asked a lot lately. Unfortunately, I too often have to say no, I’m sorry but I can’t today, I’m too busy at the moment helping customers and earning a living. But whenever I can, I do make the time.

This past Sunday the entire family went geocaching. Now if you’ve never heard of this activity, you’re wondering what it is.

On May 1, 2000, the US government turned off the signal scrambling that limited the accuracy of global positioning systems. (This move paved the way for the GPS receivers that are now widely used by drivers to navigate the road.)

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AT&T Instructs People to Set Up Their Wireless Networks Insecurely

AT&T Instructs People to Set Up Their Wireless Networks Insecurely

One of my customers had a wireless router die, so she got a new one from AT&T and tried to set it up herself.

2wireAfter fiddling with it a bit, she called me, I went over and got it set up. In the process, I noticed an odd thing. Years after the arrival of  uncrackable encryption, AT&T is telling their customers to set up their wireless networks in such a way that they can easily be cracked in a matter of just minutes…  (more…)

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Downgraded, Upgraded, Dead-Graded and Led Astray

Downgraded, Upgraded, Dead-Graded and Led Astray

Today I had one of those strange experiences.

memoryI was called in to look at a computer that had recently been upgraded by one of the more prominent IT shops in town.

They had upgraded Bill’s hard drive (which had previously been a tiny 20 GB), and his memory — all at a very reasonable price.

Except… now the computer would suddenly and spontaneously reboot after running for about 8 to 10 minutes. Like clockwork.

Odd…

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