Author Archives: dfwonsite
Happy Cinco de Mayo,
If you are still using Windows 8.0, please upgrade to Windows 8.1 then onto Windows 10. Microsoft will no longer be issuing security updates for Windows 8.0. Also please remember that upgrading to Windows 10 operating system is free until late July 2016. After July 2016, you will have to pay for the Windows 10 Operating System upgrade. So the clock is ticking. Tick Tock
Also in the necxt couple of weeks, I will starting selling printer toner and cartridges. I am looking for the right vendor to work with.
If you have a Samsung Android Phone and can create an Samsung account, please create a Samsung account. That way you can back up your Notes and Memo’s that you create on your phone. Why? If you have to rebuild your phone or get a new Samsung Phone, your Notes and Memo’s will be restored.
Per Department of Homeland Security, Apple and Windows, if you have Quicktime installed on your Windows laptop, tablet, or desktop. Please uninstall Quicktime.
Quicktime developed by Apple and is used on Windows PC’s and Mac’s. Apple has not released a new version of Quicktime on the Windows side for over 10 years. They have been providing security updates.
Apple has announced that they will no longer provided Quicktime Security updates on the Windows side but will continue supporting Quicktime on the Mac side.
The Department of Homeland Security to issue an alert that Windows users should uninstall QuickTime immediately.
Newer version of Windows Media Player will play .mov files.
How to uninstall Quicktime in Windows 10: Go to Start (Flag icon usually on the lower left side), click on Settings, click on Apps & Features, Scroll to Quicktime and click on it. Choose uninstall..
Window 8.1: Right click on the 4 flags (Flags icon usually on the lower left side), click on Control Panel, click on Programs, click Programs and Features, click on Quicktime and then click uninstall.
Window Vista and 7: Click on Start, click on Control Panel, click on Programs, click Programs and Features, click on Quicktime and then click uninstall.
On my birthday, my wife and daughter bought a Samsung Gear S watch for me. It is a smartwatch or as I call it a Dick Tracy Watch. I am waiting for Mumbles to call. But before they bought it for me, I spent over a year looking at smartwatches before recommending the Gear S to them.
There are several different types of smartwatches ranging from Apple, LG, Motorola, Pebble and Samsung etc. They can receive text and email alerts. Some can monitor your heart, your exercising, and have navigation (GPS).
But the first question is:
What is a smartwatch?
A smartwatch is wearable technology that connects to your smart phone. It can receive notification of incoming calls, text alerts, email alerts, social media alerts. Some smartwatches are like a Dick Tracy watch where you call, talk, and receive phone calls. They can run apps on your phone or on the smartwatch.
The second question is:
What are you going to use it for?
Me, here are the things that I wanted:
1 .The ability to call and receive calls without having my phone nearby. I hardly ever take my phone when I go jogging early in the morning (I don’t have a place to store my phone when I go jogging). My wife gets worried if I am not back from my morning jog by 6:30. Now she can call me when I am jogging. This ability requires a phone data plan
2. Bluetooth capability to see who is calling without having to dig out my phone from my jacket or pants pocket. How many times have you gone to reach for your ringing phone to see who is calling and by the time you pull it out, the person calling has hung up. The watch will allow me to see who is calling and I can either answer the call with the phone, a Bluetooth headset or the watch.
3. To receive notifications (texts and emails) or check my calendar without having to dig out my phone to see the message.
4. The ability to hear music while jogging, I can either listen to music that I downloaded or from the Internet. I couldn’t do that before.
5. A heart rate monitor on my arm. I no longer have to attach a device to my chest to monitor my heart rate while jogging
6. GPS is built into the watch to map my jogs and for directions when I travel
7. Exercise programs for walking, running, cycling or even if I decided to go hiking.
The third question is:
How much you want to pay for your smartwatch?
The price range of a smart watch can run from $50 for a Chinese knockoff to the thousands of dollars. The Gear S outright purchase price is $329.99 (Bluetooth capability only). If you purchase the Gear S and put it on a data plan it will cost less upfront but will cost more over time. We are with AT&T, the phone was 199.99 plus a $40 activation fee, and 2 year data plan at Best Buy. Amazon had the watch listed for $149.99 with an AT&T plan and Best Buy matched the price. The monthly cost of having this phone on our data plan is about $12.00 month. After the 2 years, total cost of the phone will be close to $500.
The fourth question is:
Will my smartphone be compatible with my smartwatch?
For full use of the Gear S, it will only work with a Samsung Galaxy Phones running Android 4.3 or higher. But it can work with any smartphone (including the iPhone) but only in limited capability. Here are 3 YouTube videos showing how the Gear S will work with an iPhone or a non-Samsung Galaxy Phone in a limited capability. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=io-xRnzC-3I or https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UEicnFrh5IM or https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VrXwHh7EVnI.
The Apple watch will only work with an iPhone. Please check the Apple website to see which iPhones will work with the Apple watch.
The Pebble will work with Android smartphone or the iPhone.
Whatever smartwatch you decide to purchase, please check the smartwatch manufacturer’s website to see which operating system are compatible with it.
The fifth question is:
Will the smartwatch be comfortable to wear all day?
The Gear S size doesn’t bother me. It looks big but it is really light. Most of my watches weigh over 3 ounces and the Gear S is under 3 ounces. The curvature of the watch allows it to be sleek. It doesn’t bother me wearing it all day long. Have you seen the sizes of some of the Invicta watches?
But before you buy a smartwatch, please try it on
The sixth question is:
Can you put up with the battery charge life of a smartwatch?
In my opinion, the BIG issue is battery charge life. Smartwatches have a small battery, the more you use it, the shorter the charge lasts. Most manufacturers are saying that you should be able to go a 2 to 7 days before having recharge your smartwatch. Right now, I am recharging my watch every night and after I do my morning jog. But I am still learning how to extend my battery life. Since I am charging my watch every night, I cannot use the sleep app to monitor my sleepL. The battery charge life reminds me of the printed miles per gallon to the actual miles per gallon for a car.
The last question is:
Do you mind being an early adopter?
Smartwatches have been around for short time compared to smartphones but they are evolving quickly. In six months to a year, they could be totally different due to technology. But who knows.
Google has added a new measure to protect users from visiting risky websites. It’s now going to warn users about bogus downloads, even before they go to the website concerned. The changes will affect Google Search, users of the Chrome browser, and advertisements provided by Google to third-party websites. Safe Browsing Warnings Extended to Chrome Google’s Chrome browser will now contain special warning messages built into the web browser. The warnings are part of Google’ Safe Browsing Service , which is also available as a third party API (application program interface). Parts of the Safe Browsing Service are also used in conjunction with Mozilla Firefox and Apple Safari web browsers.
A warning message from Google’s Safe Browsing may appear for two reasons. The first is when the user is about to visit a webpage that’s known or believed to house the most serious type of malware. Such malware is responsible for “drive-by” attacks, in which simply accessing a malicious web site is enough to trigger the malware being installed onto a computer. At one point, such warning messages appeared 60 million times a day. In 2015, the figure is closer to 20 million a day. (Source: google.com)
The second situation is when users are about to download any file that might harm their computer. In many cases such files have been misleadingly described, and users intentionally download them, but don’t realize their true nature.
In both cases, users can go ahead and visit the website or start the download, but will have to explicitly click a disclaimer acknowledging they understand the risks.
I received this information from John Lister.
My wife Anne asked me several months ago to write about the differences between malicious software called Viruses, Worms and Trojans. So here it is.
Most people will assume a computer virus has infected their computer when a Worm or a Trojan attacks their computer. All 3 programs can cause bad things to happen to your computer but each one attacks differently. The best case scenario is not to get one of the things. The worst case scenario if you got one of these things is that you will have to back up your data, reformat your hard drive, reinstall your operating system, reinstall your programs and restore your data from your backup.
What Is a Virus?
A computer virus is like a human virus. It travels from computer to computer by attaching itself to a file or an email. A virus has an executable file (.exe extension after the file name) and cannot infect your computer unless you click on the file to run the program. One of the viruses back in nineties would show fireworks and corrupt some files. Please remember the only way a computer virus can travel is through human interaction such as sharing an infected file or emails with infected files as an attachents.
What Is a Worm?
A worm is similar to a virus by design but does not need human interaction to spread the infection. It can travel from computer to computer by using the email system in a computer. How it does that is by sending itself to everyone that is in your email address book. Then it attaches itself to everyone in their email address books and sends itself to everyone in their address books. It is like that old TV shampoo commercial. Where 1 girl tells 2 girls about the shampoo then the 2 girls each tell 2 other girls. The next four girls each tell 2 other girls and the cascade begins. When this happens, your network will bog down, or your computer will become very slow or unresponsive because of the replication of the worm. Companies have shut down their networks because of worms. Please remember some worms are designed to allow others to remotely access your computer and take control of it.
What Is a Trojan Horse?
Remember the Trojan war, Paris kidnapped Helen from Greece, married her and they were living in Troy. The Greeks wanted to get Helen back and they could not penetrate the walls of Troy. So the Greeks created a large hollow wooden horse and hid in the horse. The Trojans rolled the horse into the city believing that the Greeks left. That night while citizens of Troy slept or were in drunken stupor, the Greeks came out of the horse, took over the city and got Helen back.
The Trojan Horse (aka Trojan) is latest of malicious software to attack a PC or a MAC. It comes from a website, website toolbar installation, a website link in an email, or useful software A Trojan, at first will appear to be useful software but will actually do damage once installed or run on your computer. Some Trojans will hide your files and folders or they will continuously try to get you to purchase something or place new icons on your desktop. Also there are the Trojans that take you to an undesirable website and reset your home page. Backdoor Trojans are some of the worse Trojans. They try to create a backdoor on your PC/Mac and gather your personal information.
Tips to Combat Viruses, Worms and Trojan Horses on Your Computer
Keep The Operating System Updated
The first step in protecting your computer from any malicious there is to ensure that your operating system (OS) is up-to-date. This is essential if you are running a Microsoft Windows OS. Secondly, you need to have anti-virus software installed on your system and ensure you download updates frequently to ensure your software has the latest fixes for new viruses, worms, and Trojan horses. Additionally, you want to make sure your anti-virus program has the capability to scan e-mail and files as they are downloaded from the Internet, and you also need to run full disk scans periodically. This will help prevent malicious programs from even reaching your computer.
Use a Firewall
You should also install a firewall. A firewall is a system that prevents unauthorized use and access to your computer. A firewall can be either hardware or software. Hardware firewalls provide a strong degree of protection from most forms of attack coming from the outside world and can be purchased as a stand-alone product or in broadband routers. Unfortunately, when battling viruses, worms and Trojans, a hardware firewall may be less effective than a software firewall, as it could possibly ignore embedded worms in out going e-mails and see this as regular network traffic. A good software firewall will protect your computer from outside attempts to control or gain access your computer, and usually provides additional protection against the most common Trojan programs or e-mail worms. The downside to software firewalls is that they will only protect the computer they are installed on, not a network.
Please think about where you are searching and what you are clicking on.
Till next time
Many years ago when I was interviewing for my first IT position, my boss said during the interview. That he wanted to figure out a way to save files to a webserver, charge people to access the files and charge run time to use the applications on the webserver. His vision then is happening now. You can save a file offsite to a webserver or a webserver farm and access that file from any PC/MAC/Laptop in the world. This webserver or webservers’ service is called Cloud Computing or the Cloud. It is a global service which means that our files are now global. You have gone local to global in a blink of an eye. John Carroll of Tres Coaching Service, I hope you are smiling about the previous sentence. But now the question is when you save a file to the Cloud, are you giving up your intellectual rights to that file? Some people say yes and some people say no. You decide.
Most people do not read the terms of service when signing up with Google, Dropbox, Windows Live or any offsite file saving company. As most attorneys say always read the terms of service including the fine print before you sign or agree to it.
Apple MobileMe (Current Subscribers only, No New subscribers because of iCloud )
License from You
Except for material we may license to you, Apple does not claim ownership of the materials and/or Content you submit or make available on the Service. However, by submitting or posting such Content on areas of the Service that are accessible by the public, you grant Apple a worldwide, royalty-free, non-exclusive license to use, distribute, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, publicly perform and publicly display such Content on the Service solely for the purpose for which such Content was submitted or made available. Said license will terminate within a commercially reasonable time after you or Apple remove such Content from the public area. By submitting or posting such Content on areas of the Service that are accessible by the public, you are representing that you are the owner of such material and/or have authorization to distribute it.
Amazon Web Services as of May 23,2011
8. Proprietary Rights
8.1 Your Content. As between you and us, you or your licensors own all right, title, and interest in and to Your Content. Except as provided in this Section 8, we obtain no rights under this Agreement from you or your licensors to Your Content, including any related intellectual property rights. You consent to our use of Your Content to provide the Service Offerings to you and any End Users. We may disclose Your Content to provide the Service Offerings to you or any End Users or to comply with any request of a governmental or regulatory body (including subpoenas or court orders).
Dropbox Terms of Service as 07/06/11
Your Stuff & Your Privacy
By using our Services you provide us with information, files, and folders that you submit to Dropbox (together, “your stuff”). You retain full ownership to your stuff. We don’t claim any ownership to any of it. These Terms do not grant us any rights to your stuff or intellectual property except for the limited rights that are needed to run the Services, as explained below.
We may need your permission to do things you ask us to do with your stuff, for example, hosting your files, or sharing them at your direction. This includes product features visible to you, for example, image thumbnails or document previews. It also includes design choices we make to technically administer our Services, for example, how we redundantly backup data to keep it safe. You give us the permissions we need to do those things solely to provide the Services. This permission also extends to trusted third parties we work with to provide the Services, for example Amazon, which provides our storage space (again, only to provide the Services).
You are solely responsible for your conduct, the content of your files and folders, and your communications with others while using the Services. For example, it’s your responsibility to ensure that you have the rights or permission needed to comply with these Terms.
We may choose to review public content for compliance with our community guidelines, but you acknowledge that Dropbox has no obligation to monitor any information on the Services. We are not responsible for the accuracy, completeness, appropriateness, or legality of files, user posts, or any other information you may be able to access using the Services.
11. Content license from you
11.1 You retain copyright and any other rights you already hold in Content which you submit, post or display on or through, the Services. By submitting, posting or displaying the content you give Google a perpetual, irrevocable, worldwide, royalty-free, and non-exclusive license to reproduce, adapt, modify, translate, publish, publicly perform, publicly display and distribute any Content which you submit, post or display on or through, the Services. This license is for the sole purpose of enabling Google to display, distribute and promote the Services and may be revoked for certain Services as defined in the Additional Terms of those Services.
11.2 You agree that this license includes a right for Google to make such Content available to other companies, organizations or individuals with whom Google has relationships for the provision of syndicated services, and to use such Content in connection with the provision of those services.
11.3 You understand that Google, in performing the required technical steps to provide the Services to our users, may (a) transmit or distribute your Content over various public networks and in various media; and (b) make such changes to your Content as are necessary to conform and adapt that Content to the technical requirements of connecting networks, devices, services or media. You agree that this license shall permit Google to take these actions.
11.4 You confirm and warrant to Google that you have all the rights, power and authority necessary to grant the above license.
Microsoft Live including SkyDrive as August 31, 2010
5. Your Content
Except for material that we license to you, we don’t claim ownership of the content you provide on the service. Your content remains your content. We also don’t control, verify, or endorse the content that you and others make available on the service.
You control who may access your content. If you share content in public areas of the service or in shared areas available to others you’ve chosen, then you agree that anyone you’ve shared content with may use that content. When you give others access to your content on the service, you grant them free, nonexclusive permission to use, reproduce, distribute, display, transmit, and communicate to the public the content solely in connection with the service and other products and services made available by Microsoft. If you don’t want others to have those rights, don’t use the service to share your content.
You understand that Microsoft may need, and you hereby grant Microsoft the right, to use, modify, adapt, reproduce, distribute, and display content posted on the service solely to the extent necessary to provide the service.
Please respect the rights of artists, inventors, and creators. Content may be protected by copyright. People appearing in content may have a right to control the use of their image. If you share content on the service in a way that infringes others’ copyrights, other intellectual property rights, or privacy rights, you’re breaching this contract. You represent and warrant that you have all the rights necessary for you to grant the rights in this section and the use of the content doesn’t violate any law. We won’t pay you for your content. We may refuse to publish your content for any or no reason. We may remove your content from the service at any time if you breach this contract or if we cancel or suspend the service.
You’re responsible for backing up the data that you store on the service. If your service is suspended or canceled, we may permanently delete your data from our servers. We have no obligation to return data to you after the service is suspended or canceled. If data is stored with an expiration date, we may also delete the data as of that date. Data that is deleted may be irretrievable.
Until next time
Happy Fourth of July.
Sometimes fireworks can cause minor damage to your home or totally destroy a home which could mean losing your PC with all your family pictures. So my question to those of you who read this is, how do you insure your PC/Laptop data? Do you back up to an external hard drive on a regular basis or do you use some type of offsite backup or do you do both?
I do both. I have about 180 Gigabytes of data (which includes music, pictures, spreadsheets, word documents, etc) that I back up to a second internal hard drive on a nightly basis and I also backup to an offsite server as well.
Why do both? If I have to recover a large file (i.e. an Outlook PST file of 1 gigabyte file), the restoration of that file is quicker from my second internal hard drive than from an offsite restoration. The offsite backup is protection from total loss (i.e. a house fire, or your house being hit by lighting and frying your PC/Laptop).
There are several advantages to offsite backup. Here are a few: if your PC and external hard drive are destroyed by a house fire or lightening hitting the house, your data is safe because it is stored offsite; you do not have to remember to attach the external hard drive to your PC or laptop; and your external hard drive can go bad.
Last week, a client’s external hard drive crashed. Fortunately for my client I was able to recover the data. If they had used an offsite backup system, my client could have save some money by logging into their account and downloading the file. Now many of my clients only use offsite backup to insure their data. If and when their hard drive failed, they have no problem restoring their data from their offsite backup location. If you decided to start backing up your data offsite, please make sure the company you use encrypts your data.
One more thing, there is a new Rootkit out there. A Rootkit is a trojan. This Trojan requires a complete wipe and rebuild of your computer if you get it. The Trojan hides the boot sector (Ouch). (The boot sector comes up when you turn on your computer. It tells the system where to go to start the Windows operating system). The Rootkit is called “Popureb”. Please check this website for further information about this nasty critter: http://www.wservernews.com/go/1309601826046
Think about it. Android is the leading smartphone system in the United States. But when it comes to tablets that it is another story. I own an Android smartphone and my wife has an iPhone. When Father’s Day roll around last Sunday, my wife was surprised that I did not want an Android Tablet or an iPad. There are so many different Android tablets available that none of them can really compete head to head with an iPad. Also, Android tablets have so many different versions and prices that it makes it so hard to choose which one to buy; therefore, they are cancelling themselves out. Here’s why: Google has let Android be a semi-open system that manufacturers can add or remove things that they like or dislike at their discretion on their tablets. Whereas the iPad is a closed system and there is only one manufacturer.
Motorola XOOM was supposed to be an iPad killer – NOT. The XOOM had every feature that the iPadhad plus more, such as a micro SD card slot. Guess what, there were issues with the XOOM such as non function micro SD card storage slot. Motorola has said there will be an update fix for the European XOOM tablets but no word yet when the fix will happen here in the United States.
How about the ASUS EE Pad Transformer TF101-A1; will it be the next iPad killer? It is a cool tablet with a keyboard docking station. It can act as a slow laptop with Android 3.01 system when attached to the docking station. The only problem that I have found with it is the availability of this tablet in stores.
How about the Viewsonic tablet? It is inexpensive. Can it compete head to head with iPad? CNET does not think so (http://reviews.cnet.com/tablets/viewsonic-g-tablet/4505-3126_7-34431221.html).
Or will the Amazon table,t due out later this year, be the iPad killer? Amazon will own the software from the bottom to the top similar to the iPad.
What do you think?