Friday, November 21, 2008

Life of a Geek [PIC]

This is self-explanatory.

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AMD Sneak Peeks Phenom II, Overclocks To 5+GHz

We’ve been spending some quality time with the folks at AMD today in sunny Austin, TX today. The team here has been giving us a run-down on their upcoming Phenom II processor along with the enthusiast platform they’re calling “Dragon”. In short, the Dragon platform is a combination of an AMD Phenom II X4 processor, Radeon 4800 Graphics cards...

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Will IE6 screw Microsoft?

There's an interesting thought: Lots of browser market share is still stuck in IE6, according to this article about 8%. Total IE6 share is 24%. What if Mozilla can pick that up over time and Microsoft can't? Is it just me or does this look like IE6 (well, and a bad IE8) could screw Microsoft???

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Samsung Starts Mass Production of 256GB SSDs

Samsung Electronics has started mass production of 256G-byte solid-state drives, which could make their way into laptops in a few months, the company announced Thursday.

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Thursday, November 20, 2008

Sunday, November 16, 2008

How To Secure a Linksys WRT54G Router


Many Windows XP users have home networks which utilize a router which allows several computers to share the same Internet connection. It is important to know that perimeter security is just as important as keeping your PC locked down. Doing so will prevent successful attacks from the outside world. This article covers how to secure a Linksys WRT54G Router.


How To Secure a Linksys WRT54G Router | digg story

Major source of Internet spam pulled off the Web

There is a good chance that the spam volume hitting your email inbox could drop drastically. A web hosting firm was identified earlier in the week by the computer security community as a major host of organizations that were engaging in spam activity. The web hosting firm was pulled from the Web.

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Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

IT administrator delivers networks to spammers

An IT manager who logged onto to his former employer's computer network five months after being fired and opened the email server up to spammers has been sentenced to one year in prison.

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Thursday, October 30, 2008

More on the Windows 7 UI: new taskbar will be mandatory

While we haven't yet gotten our hands on a Windows 7 build with the new taskbar, we did talk to Microsoft's Steven Sinofsky about the various UI changes and what we can expect at release time.

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Understanding Windows Server 2008 Active Directory Functiona

After you remove domain controllers that are running older versions of Windows Server or you upgrade them to Windows Server 2008, you can raise the domain or forest functional level. In this article, MVP Daniel Petri will explain the changes in Windows Server 2008 domain and forest level functions.

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Friday, September 5, 2008

MY MCITP Bootcamp Experience

Last week I ventured to Dulles, VA to attend the Microsoft Certified IT Professional enterprise Administrator bootcamp. The bootcamp was hosted by Vigilar. I've attended bootcamps before, but this was my first with Vigilar.

It was only a short ride of 45 minutes or so to the Hampton Inn where we were housed. The hotel is located just across the parking lot from the Executive Conference and Training Center where the classroom was. The hotel was top notch, and provided a nice quiet and comfortable place to sleep, relax, and of course, study. And they have free internet access (wired and wireless), so that was a nice extra.

This bootcamp is an upgrade from MCSE 2003. It covers 3 exams, 70-620, 70-647, and 70-649. It is crammed into 5 days.

Monday morning at 8:30 we delved right into Windows Vista (70-620), after a few lectures, the instructor cut us loose to do labs, and study for the exam which was set for 4:00PM. Lunch came at about 11:30, and it was good. they get an "A" for the food.

We continued to cram into the afternoon. Just before 4:00 the test proctor (who was also the class manager) had us leave the room, remove all personal items, and he set-up the computers for testing. We came back into the room and tried to start the exam, but we were all booted out of the Prometric application. UGH!!! The class manager worked with Prometric for more then an hour, but to no avail.

We were released and tentatively set to take the test at 0800 the next morning. The class manager stayed through the night rebuilding the server and updating the workstations. We all arrived the next morning ready to test, but still a no-go. It was after 10:00 when Prometric finally fixed the issue, and we got to the exam.

As you know I cannot talk about the test, but it was not too difficult with the proper preparation. I passed, that's what matters. For passing this exam I was awarded the Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist Vista Configuration certification. One down, two to go.

After the exam, we had lunch (more good food), and dived head first into Windows Server 2008, the 70-647 portion. To be honest it gets blurry from this point, the pace is so fast. While the instructor is lecturing, you are working on the labs, and trying to do what he is talking about. It's brutal at some points, but it's only 5 days, so it's over before you really run out of breathe.

Tuesday and Wednesday, and most of Thursday are lectures and labs and studying the course ware. On Thursday evening 7PM, we took the 70-647 exam. All that cramming paid off, I did very well. Two down, one to go.

More studying for the 70-649 exam that night, and Friday morning, more practice on the labs. At Noon, I took the 70-649 exam, and I was done. I successfully completed the course, and subsequently awarded the Microsoft Certified IT Professional Enterprise Administrator certification.



Regards
John Crawford

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Sunday, May 18, 2008

Former Microsoft mgr offers fix for XP SP3 'endless reboot '

A former Microsoft security manager has published a tool designed to detect and fix PCs that may be susceptible to "endless reboots" if updated to Windows XP Service Pack 3 (SP3).

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Friday, May 16, 2008

The PC Repair Toolkit in your Pocket: Boot CD on a USB Stick

Several times I’ve been called upon at a moment’s notice to troubleshoot a misbehaving PC system either at work or at a friend’s or relative’s home. Being the “go to” guy for these sorts of problems is both a curse and a blessing, but I guess that is besides the point.

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Sunday, April 27, 2008

My MCSE Bootcamp Experience

Two weeks ago I ventured to Vienna, VA to take the second half of the MCSE 2003 bootcamp given by the Training Camp. Last May I attended the MCSA bootcamp portion at the Training Camp facility in Bushkill, PA. This time I arrived two days early to review as much of the 70-291 lectures.

The facilities were much different than the resort setting at Bushkill. The classroom was in an office building down the hall from the ISC2 office, it's a bit cramped but cozy with fewer classes and students. The food, the instructors, and staff, as expected, were great. I hit the jackpot by getting the same instructor from the MCSA portion.

My first day we had to pack up and move rooms. They have much less classroom space, and the new class needed the large room we were in. It did disrupt every ones train of thought, and for those that had been there for the last week, kinda throw things off track momentarily. But we quickly bounced back and forged ahead.

Students stayed at the Homestead Studio Suites just 2 buildings away. While the room was much smaller than the villa at Bushkill, it's plenty adequate for someone who is in class for 11 hours a day, and just needs a quiet place to study and sleep.

Tuesday night, all the students took the 70-291 exam, except me because I've already taken and passed it. After everyone finished the exam, class resumed at 9:30PM, with 70-293; we broke just a few minutes before midnight.

Wednesday Morning, we continued with 70-293. After covering Clusters, Network Load Balancing, or Certification Authority, the rest of 293 was a review from 70-290 and 291. Thank God I had the notion to arrive 2 days early for review because I surely needed it.

Wednesday Night, we tested on 70-293. It didn't start out so good, my testing computer crashed just before the exam started (DOH!) and scored me a big fat ZERO. The proctor quickly got that fixed with Prometric, and I was on my way. I felt pretty good from the first question, and by the end had no doubts that I'd passed. It was a good score, nothing to brag about though.

Thursday, we started 70-294 (Active Directory). I have a hand in training new personnel at my job, I tell them that AD is the core managing Windows. Know AD and your life will be easier. Let's hope I've been giving them sound advice all these years.

On Friday we continued with AD. The weather had warmed considerably from earlier in the week, so the classroom temperature was getting uncomfortable. The A/C was not functioning in our classroom, opening the windows only brought in more distracters. But we drove on. 70-294 is about making sense of the big picture with sites, domains, roles, policies and permissions. By the afternoon we had finished the curriculum and put in study mode. Friday, like Thursday was a beautiful day outside, probably the nicest day this Spring. It made it that much harder to be inside with my nose in a study guide and my eyes 18 inches from a computer screen. The exam began at 6PM; I finished at 8:30PM. I passed, that's all I have to say about it .

For Friday night, our marching orders were to study the 70-298 section. Myself, being a huge SCIFI fan, I had to fight the urge to pay attention to the TV since a new episode of Battlestar Galactica came on at 10PM.

Saturday morning came way too soon, but they served a nice hot breakfast, and we were off to the races. The outside temperature was up in the high 70's again. At about Noon we finished the lectures so we could adjourn to studying for the 298 Design exam at 4PM. I walked back to my room and found it to be just the right mix of
comfort and quiet to get some quality study time in. 4PM came and there I was in front of the exam.

I passed the 298 exam, again that's all I'll say, I got my MCSE. It was tough with the way the exam was constrained, and time squeeze we are under in the camp to massage the material. At 7PM, we reconvened class again to begin the 70-299 portion. Like 298, none is really new, but it's the concept of applying it on a broader scale, putting many concepts together. We adjourned at 9:30PM. I went back to my room and studied till about midnight.

We didn't have class on Sunday morning, rather the exam began at 9:30AM. We all arrived to class at the normal time to study. The 299 exam is difficult compared to the rest. While Microsoft will not give you a trick question, their exams are reading comprehension intensive. The 299 exam is just that, and the selection of answers are close enough that you really need to know the material. The obvious answers will not jump out at you like previous exams. So prepare - prepare - prepare. I didn't fare so well, came in just under the mark. It's a shorter exam, both time and number of questions, so there's less room for error as well. I will be making arrangements to go back and kick it this time with the Microsoft second chance voucher.

Overall it was a pleasant experience, and less stressful than going to my job. I recommend it to anyone that has a few years experience and wants to get certified (DODD 8570 is coming!). As I've written in previous articles, the instructors and support people do everything in their power to make the experience as pleasant and painless as possible. I plan to go back for Server 2008 when it becomes available.

Regards

John Crawford


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Wednesday, March 19, 2008

The Basics Of Network Security

A network is two or more computers linked together in order to share data. From a security standpoint, the problem with networks is that unauthorized individuals might also be able to access that data.

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Users continue to compromise federal computer networks

More than half of government IT professionals know of violations in security protocols, according to a recent survey. Funding challenges hinder agencies' ability to put proper security measures in place, while lack of systems and requirements standardization creates confusion in the market...

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Identification Management

Identity management also has become the main issue in information security. Governments businesses and private sectors are taking advantage of identity management systems to provide and control access to places and services such as buildings, bank accounts, and computer applications.

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Virus Prevention

Having an anti-virus program installed and running on your PC is by far one the best virus prevention techniques. An anti-virus program constantly scans and monitors your computer for any suspicious files or activity. You can also schedule automatic system scans to automate your system security....

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What is computer virus?

Computer viruses are small software programs that are designed to spread from one computer to another and to interfere with computer operation....

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Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Safari 3.1 Is Out

Apple’s web browser Safari has a new version out for both Mac and Windows:

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Types of Computer Viruses

really amusing.... turning famous people into viruses..

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How to check if your antivirus is working

Most of the time we just install the antivirus or the anti Malware programs and relax that they are working fine and one fine morning you see things not working and finally you realize that its your antivirus program which was not working at all. Here is a small test which you can do in case you are not sure if your antivirus program is working ok

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What a closed Internet looks like -

For a glimpse of their vision for the future of the Internet, look no further than the headlines of the past few weeks. The biggest story has been the phone companies -- yes, the same companies who insist you can trust them to control the Internet -- demanding retroactive immunity from Congress for spying on your phone calls without a warrant.

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Monday, March 17, 2008

Speed Up Linux

Overall, Linux is not known as a resource hog. The free operating system is a fairly lean machine out of the box -- some distributions moreso than others. Still, there are some tweaks you can make to any Linux installation to speed things up.

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Get Back your Screen Space: Maximize Firefox Viewing Area

I have a few toolbars and around ten extensions installed whose configurations and buttons seemed to have loaded up the Firefox interface with a lot of junk. So I was hunting around for a few tricks that may help me gain some more web viewing space. Here are a few tweaks and extensions I found

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40% of all spam comes from just one source

Six bots are responsible for 85% of all spam and one of them for 39% of all spam in the world

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Intel and MS Enlist UC Berkeley For Multithreading Research

Even today, most software applications on the market don't take advantage of these multi-core chips fully and too many compute cycles are wasted. What's wrong with this picture? Obviously the task at hand isn't as easy as it would seem. Let's hope the kids at UC Berkely are alright and put those funds to good use.

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Retail Vista SP1 and final XP SP3 expected this week

Microsoft is poised to release Windows Vista Service Pack (SP1) to the retail channel this week. And the final release-to-manufacturing (RTM) of Windows XP SP3 is not far behind, according to testing sources.

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Intel Talks Up Six Cores, Nehalem, Graphics

ChannelWeb Intel offered a peek at its roadmap on Monday, serving up a six-core server processor codenamed Dunnington due out this year, an overview of the Nehalem microarchitecture that will replace Core as part of its "tock" strategy ...

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Sun spills the beans on Intel/Microsoft announcement

Intel and Microsoft are planning a make a major announcement about a “joint research undertaking with universities” tomorrow. A note sent by Sun to journalists late Monday confirms: Intel and Microsoft are approaching universities to educate a new generation of multi-core developers.

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Installing Windows XP On A SATA Drive

I have come across this problem whilst working on a clients computer, thought I would share a quick guide for installing Windows XP on a computer with a SATA drive.

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Review: Firefox maintains edge over Microsoft in browser war

Firefox 3 beta beefs up usability and security, while superior speed and standards support make it the browser to beat.

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Sunday, March 16, 2008

The Top 10 Problems with IT Certification in 2008

Warren Wyrostek calls on personal and real-world experience to share the top 10 problems with IT certification in 2007/2008.

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Friday, March 14, 2008

What happens when a Windows developer gets a Mac?

Follow the daily travails of a hardcore, longtime Windows developer after he adopts a shiny new MacBook.

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*THE* classic Unix horror story

Have you ever left your terminal logged in, only to find when you came back to it that a (supposed) friend had typed "rm -rf ~/*" and was hovering over the keyboard with threats along the lines of "lend me a fiver 'til Thursday, or I hit return"?

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Some viruses come pre-installed on newly purchased devices

From iPods to navigation systems, some of today's hottest gadgets are landing on store shelves with some unwanted extras from the factory — pre-installed viruses that steal passwords, open doors for hackers and make computers spew spam.

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Run Windows Apps Seamlessly Inside Linux

You can have Windows apps running right on your Linux desktop and sharing the same desktop files. It's relatively painless, it takes only a little bit longer than a Windows XP install, and it works just like virtualizing Windows on a Mac with Parallels Coherence -except it's free. Here's how to do it.

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10 of the Worst Moments in Network Security History

Security Events that shock sensibilities and shaped the future.

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Monday, March 3, 2008

Everex launches a tiny Linux PC - The Everex gPC Mini

Everex, the company that brought us the Cloudbook is going after Mini PCs like the Mac Mini with this Linux Powered Mini PC.

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First spam felony conviction upheld: no free speech to spam

Virginia's Supreme Court on Friday upheld the first US felony conviction for spamming, narrowly denying an appeal that argued that spamming was protected by the First Amendment.

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Friday, February 29, 2008

That Wi-Fi network you thought was secure? It ain't

Businesses using some of the more advanced methods for securing connections to Wi-Fi access points need to take a hard look at the configuration settings of client computers. So say researchers who have documented a simple way to impersonate trusted networks.

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Tips, Tricks and Tweaks for Windows Users

Here's a great site with excellent content that covers a broad range of information with video tutorials for learning some of the most impressive web applications and software available today. From computer security to Windows XP system utilities you'll find the information you need here.

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German court limits cyber spying

Germany's highest court has restricted the right of the security services to spy on the computers of suspected criminals and terrorists.

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10 Linux Security Tips

Ways to keep your computer under your control.

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10 Computer Security Tips, How Many Are You Applying? | Keit

Right off… I’m not a security expert. I’m just a guy who got attacked, and learned some hard lessons.Let ask you a question…What price do you place on security?Getting your computer hacked, or email cracked is a crime of opportunity.

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Security skills of IT workforce lacking, survey finds

A majority of organizations are in need of IT workers with security, firewall and data privacy skills, but more than 40% of 3,500 tech professionals surveyed by the Computing Technology Industry Association said their IT employees are not proficient in such skills.

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Tips To Prevent Hackers in Your Computer

Internet security is a major issue these days. People called hackers spend millions of dollars trying to figure out how to get into your computer. The dangers of computer hackers increase every day. This website is an excellent source of red hot tips to help you enjoy your computer and your use of the internet with an exceptional degree of comfort

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New AVG Internet Security 8.0 | Get Reviewed!

Grisfot has recently released the newest version of AVG Internet Security 8.0 is which promises to protect you online activities.

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Thursday, February 28, 2008

Oregon State increases reliance on Macs

Apple's popular 'Get a Mac' TV spots are also causing a stir, according to Dave Nevin, IT manager for college community network."The Mac vs. PC ads are very compelling marketing; and I think they've had sway," Nevin said.

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Mac vs. PC vs. Linux -- South Park Style

Gabe Schwarzer, the video creator who brought us the original Mac vs. PC "South Park" style parody ad is back with a sequel. It lags for some part - but the ending is funny.

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Trojan targets Windows Mobile

McAfee has unearthed a Windows Mobile PocketPC Trojan that disables security, installs via a memory card, can’t be uninstalled and makes itself your home page.

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M$ lowered Vista reqs to help Intel sell incompatible chips

So now that the "Vista Capable" lawsuit is a full-blown class action, the judge has unsealed all 158 pages of emails between Microsoft execs trying to sort out what went wrong with the sticker program. While bits and pieces have been blacked out, what remains is still fairly incredible...

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NASA uses Fedora - a lot!

Jack Aboutboul, Red Hat Community Engineer, had the chance to visit NASA and take a look around. While there he discovered that they use Fedora a lot, from live video distribution to Houston to data analysis of the Columbia crash. Read on for more details and lots of pictures!

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Thursday, February 21, 2008

Ten Nigerians arrested in Spain for email lottery scam

IT security and control firm Sophos has reminded computer users about the danger of internet scams following the arrest of ten people in Spain alleged to have defrauded victims via an email lottery scam.

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Invisible dots left by printers 'breach privacy'

European Union justice watchdogs are concerned that “Big Brother” computer printer technology that allows security agencies to track printed documents might breach privacy laws.

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Tips For Improving Users' Security Awareness

Some of the biggest threats to computer and network security come from end users who aren't particularly tech-savvy or have been educated about safe computing practices on-line. This article has some advice on the sorts of things those of us that end up providing PC support for friends, family and colleagues can do to better inform them.

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Microsoft scrambles to quash 'friendly' worm story

Microsoft is moving to counter scathing comments over a security paper authored by researchers at its Cambridge facility,which suggests computer worms can be used for good...

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Security Breach Of Desktop Hard Drive At Mass. School Dept.

It had to happen sooner or later. A hard drive, on what I assume to be a desktop computer, was stolen from the Malden headquarters Department of Education, in Massachusetts. An auditor for the department arrived to work last week only to find that his computer wouldn’t work. Assistance was requested, and the technical workers identified...

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Why Do I Feel Like Somebody’s Watching Me?

Spyware is one of the fastest-growing internet threats. According to the National Cyber Security Alliance, spyware infects more than 90% of all PCs today. These unobtrusive, malicious programs are designed to silently bypass firewalls and anti-virus software without the user’s knowledge. Once embedded in a computer, it can wreak havoc on the...

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Vineyard Victim To Computer Theft and Security Breach

J. Lohr Vineyards and Wines notifying the Attorney General’s office in New Hampshire that two computers were stolen from their office at company headquarters. A reconstruction of the computer data showed that one of the computers contained the names and Social Security numbers of J. Lohr employees. A copy of the letter to be sent affected..

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HOW TO: Create a Ghost Boot CD

Full fledged HOW TO with files necessary to create a working Ghost Boot CD. Works great for IT shops with multiple computers that have different NICs, but want tighter security than booting from a USB drive. Full fledged HOW TO with files necessary to create a working Boot CD.

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Disk encryption may not be secure enough, new research finds

Computer scientists have discovered a novel way to bypass the encryption used in programs like Microsoft's BitLocker and Apple's FileVault and then view the contents of supposedly secure files.

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Splash ID For Blackberry Two Word Review: Flexible Security

True story. I was at a $500 million++ client yesterday. One executive (who will remain nameless) had all his passwords “securely” hidden (drum roll please) on a tattered piece of paper taped to his desk under his computer monitor. If this sounds like you (or someone you know) — please do better with your password management.

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Phishers cash in on genuine warning with vishing scam

Cybercriminals clone bank switchboard to trick worried customers. IT security and control firm Sophos is warning computer users to be extra vigilant about any emails which claim to come from financial institutions, no matter how genuine the correspondence appears.

read more | digg story

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Why Training Camp Should Be Your Choice For Certification

Last year I attended the 9 day Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator bootcamp in Bushkill, PA hosted by Training Camp. Their facilities, training, instructors, and support people are the best in the business. They take care of you from the moment you arrive till the moment you depart. Like other training facilities out there, they offer a wide array of Microsoft, Cisco, Comptia, and Sun certifications, along with many others. But what sets the Training Camp apart from the others is the atmosphere, and the sincere goal to ensure you leave camp with your certifications.
How do they do that? Well, there's no magic bullet. It takes many layers to achieve this. First, the accommodations are first rate. I stayed in an efficiency apartment, basically. It was a resort villa, complete with a full kitchen (bigger than the one in my home), a great room with TV, fireplace, dining table, and a bathroom. And that's just the downstairs. The upstairs has a full bath and a good size bedroom with a TV. Not that you get to spend much time there, but when you leave the classroom, you can eat, and study in comfort, and sleep in peace.

Next, they provide for all meals except dinner. The classroom and instructor are available 24 hours a day. They keep a well stocked kitchen with a vast variety of quick and easy snack and meals, as well as your favorite junk food; that's brain food for us geeks.

or lunch we ate for free buffet at the resort restaurant. We did have to provide our own dinner, but they provided a shuttle to take us to the local grocery store twice a week to get things we needed. That way when we left class we had food in our room, we could make something quickly and resume studying.

In the classroom they have wireless internet access, so bring a laptop. You're gonna need it to copy over the work files for the homework and study time back in your room. Otherwise you may wind up staying at classroom till midnight to study.

The instructors are top rate. My instructor was not some guy that liked computers and took the tests; he had real world experience, and he was my age so he'd been around the block and back a few times. He understood how this technology worked, not only in the private sector, but for the government sector as well.

The training material has withstood the test of time, and is geared to provide the most effective means to both learn and pass the exams. The schedule is tight, and optimized to ensure all the relevant material is presented and absorbed before a student walks into the testing center. Because the instructors are so well versed in the material, students are immersed in constant review of the material, especially on the day of the exam, and right up until they walk to the testing center.

While the conventional wisdom is that bootcamps are considered short term learning, and that you won't retain much of what is presented, that simply isn't true. Someone, who at one time was very influential to my career, said that bootcamps were cheating, although he allowed training money to be spent on them. I guess it's subjective to how you best learn, but I disagree. Being 40 something, and having adult ADHD, I found it to be the best way for me to learn. I learned more in those 9 days, then I learned in all the 40 hour block classes I attended on the same subjects. In this forum I HAD TO LEARN IT, because I HAD TO PASS THE TEST. At the Training Camp, the instructors make sure you are confident you know the material and can pass before you leave the classroom and walk to the testing center. The biggest shot in the arm is when you pass that first test. You come back to class, and you say "bring it on!"

Here are some other reasons the Training Camp should be your choice for certification. The Training Camp is the only 3rd party vendor authorized to administer the CISSP exam. The Training Camp was founded in 1998, they're 10 years old. They have centers at all these locations:



United States:
Atlanta, GA,
Austin, TX
Boston, MA
Chicago, IL
Dallas, TX
Denver, CO
Ft. Lauderdale, FL
Huntsville, AL
New York, NY
Orange County, CA
Orlando, FL
Philadelphia, PA
Pocono Mountains, PA
San Diego, CA
San Francisco, CA
Scottsdale, AZ
Seattle, WA
Stamford, CT
Vienna, VA

Canada:
Mississauga, ON
Ottawa, ON

They recently opened a State-of-the-Art New Facility in Vienna, VA . The New Location Represents Comprehensive, State-of-the-Art Training To Serve the Baltimore/Washington Metropolitan Area.

While I haven't attended another bootcamp, others I know have. Their experiences are not as positive, and they didn't get the full certification when they left. The primary goal of the bootcamp is to leave with your certification, period. Everything else is gravy.

Now don't miss understand me, I would much rather work with someone with a ton of experience and no certification, then someone with little experience and a certification any day of the week and all day Sunday. But the reality is that a certification, like a degree, is what gets your resume noticed. In the end it adds more chat-ching to your wallet.


Regards

John Crawford



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Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Thieves Remove Personal Info in Providence Diocese Theft

Thieves who broke into the Diocese of Providence stole a computer that contained a major amount of personal data on diocese employees.Diocese spokesman Michael Guilfoyle said the theft occurred last weekend between Friday night and Saturday morning.He said four computers were taken, and one had personal information on about 5,000 employees

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No Disk Encryption: Personal Data Compromised For 4,000

Marine Corps Bases Japan officials are investigating the Jan. 11 theft of a laptop computer, which contained personally identifiable information for as many as 4,000 clients of Marine Corps Community Services' New Parent Support Program.

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Who Dosen't Want A Faster More Secure Computer?

20 (mostly free) downloads that help speed up your PC or boosts it's defenses. All are recommend by the Editors at PC World.

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72 Tips for Safer Computing

From the basics to the extreme, here are the tricks that will keep your computer, you, and your family secure and safe.

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Monday, January 21, 2008

The Virantix Trojan Removal Process

The Virantix Trojan is a nasty Trojan that targets P2P websites or video codecs, which is a form of fake malicious code engineered by Internet hackers. The Virantix Trojan will degrade the performance of your PC, and The Virantix Trojan generates false and misleading system error messages...

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Five Quick Fixes for Internet Connection Hang-Ups

Dead Net connection? Use the power of the Windows command prompt to get back online fast.

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CompUSA Refuses To Accept Cash

A CompUSA cashier summoned her manager and a security guard when Bud tried to pay for his purchases with cash. The promise of 40% discounts drew Bud to the Boisie, Idaho store, but he settled for a 10% discount on an iMac and several accessories.

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Sunday, January 20, 2008

Pentagon: Our new robot army will be controlled by malware

Hopefully it will use an O/S created by Microsoft...

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Remove Trojan-Proxy.Win32 Virus

The Trojan-Proxy.Win32 virus is a malware affecting computers running Microsoft Windows. These Trojans function as a proxy server and provide anonymous access to the Internet from victim machines.

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Getting started with Microsoft ISA Server 2006

This is the tutorial teach step-by-step (with illustrations) of how to install and configure Microsoft ISA Server 2006 starting from installing and then configuring your network topology, creating a rule on ISA Server and also configuring on client to access ISA Server. The tutorials are separate into parts for ease of reading.

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Microsoft brings forward release date of Windows 7

Industry sources are indicating that Microsoft plans to release Windows 7 (the follow up to Visa) in 2009, one year earlier than anticipated. Microsoft might be anxious to roll out a new update to its OS after the lukewarm reception had by Vista.

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Computer security expert told NH Legislature vote riggable

This article by one computer security expert and vote fraud activist explains how another expert specifically demonstrated to the NH legislators their system insecurity. They used it anyway (Diebold's "worst" model) AND chose not to hand count a subsample - a simple task that would quickly identify any fraud.

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Linux_on_Your_Laptop

Maybe you're a Linux user, or someone who wants to make the jump to Linux. But whenever you're out, you see people working away on their Windows laptops or their MacBooks. And you might think to yourself "I wish I could take Linux mobile like that!

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Spinning a Fedora Linux Live CD

The Fedora project has added a powerful tool to its Linux distribution to build your own live CD. With a single livecd-creator command and a kickstart file listing the software you want, you can create a desktop, gaming, or Web server to run live on most PCs. This article gives details of how to do that.

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Saturday, January 19, 2008

DNS tools play key role in Hollywood thriller 'Untraceable'

When the FBI agents in Sony Pictures ’ upcoming "Untraceable" movie need to catch a killer, they turn to network technologies IT pros have been using for years, such as whois domain name lookup, traceroute and ping, via products developed by DNS tools vendor DNSstuff.

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Data theft has porn sites and customers worried

Freehold-based Too Much Media, which sells accounting software for adult Web sites, told its customers last month that a security breach on its computers allowed hackers to access various adult Web sites' subscriber lists and has the potential to embarrass.

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Most home routers 'vulnerable to remote take-over'

Security mavens have uncovered a design flaw in most home routers that allows attackers to remotely control the devices by luring an attached computer to a booby-trapped website. The weakness could allow attackers to redirect victims to fraudulent destinations that masquerade as trusted sites belonging to banks, ecommerce companies or health care

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Storm Worm Stalkers Share Research

Storm worm – two words that continue to brew up agita among IT professionals -- continues to stalk vulnerable computers across the Internet. Now, officials at Secure Computing have created a special section on their Web-based research portal dedicated to providing the public with up-to-date information on it.

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How to Install a Free Firewall

Installing a firewall is a simple step that can keep your computer safe. There are many security suites and pay programs for firewalls, but there are also trusted free programs that perform equally well. Read on to learn How to Install a Free Firewall.

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Warnings over Valentine's Day storm worm.

Security firms PC Tools and Sophos today warned computer users about an upcoming storm worm set to take advantage of Valentine's Day on 14 February.

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Common PC Security problems

Most common problem and ways to prevent your computer from no-go.

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China has penetrated key U.S. databases: SANS director

Information from leading U.S. security organization about Chinese infiltration of U.S. computer systems

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Security Choices: The Software Firewall

This article focuses on software firewalls which, along with anti-virus software, is considered an essential part of computer security.

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AntiSpyBoss - Misleading Application

AntiSpyBoss - Misleading ApplicationIt creates random files on the computer. It then detects these files as false or exaggerated system security threats during a system scan.The user is then prompted to pay for a full license of the application in order to remove the errors.

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The Hacker's Nightmare Review on Squidoo

An excellent computer security tutorial eBook suitable for users of Windows based computers.

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Does Firefox Pose A Security Threat?

Firefox, heralded as the web browser to end Microsoft's monopoly on web surfing, may have a problem. According to MS' own AntiSpyware program, Firefox poses a high level of risk to security, on account of not being updated regularly. Is that a fair assessment, coming from the company that left critical flaws in Internet Explorer for 9 months?

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Thursday, January 17, 2008

A New Security Hole in Excel - A warning from Microsoft

Tuesday Microsoft warned that hackers are exploiting a vulnerability in numerous versions of Excel. Opening a malicious Excel document compromises the user's machine and allows hackers to execute remote code.

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Windows' Genuine Disadvantage -- Vista kill switch removed

When you install Vista, you consent to being spied upon by Microsoft, through the "Windows Genuine Advantage" system. This system tries to identify instances of copying that Microsoft thinks are illegitimate. This system included a "kill switch" which allows Microsoft to remotely deactivate your copy of Vista.

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How To Display the Menu Bar in Internet Explorer 7 IE7

Microsoft has changed the design of IE7, and some people are having a hard time getting used to it. You can display the menu bar or file menu quite easily.

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How To Find Your Windows Vista CD Key

If you've ever lost your CD Key for your Microsoft software, you can use this tool to help you find it.

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SaveXP.com Come sign the petition to keep XP alive

Microsoft plans to end most sales of Windows XP on June 30, despite a deep reluctance by many business and individuals about moving to Vista. InfoWorld believes such an expensive, time-consuming shift with problematic benefits should not be forced on Windows users, so we have decided to rally XP users to demand that XP be kept available.

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Will Hyper-V Make VMware This Decade's Netscape?

Will Microsoft's Hyper-V virtualization environment bring down VMware and dominate the still largely untapped pool of data centers that have yet to commit to the technology?

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Top Microsoft Execs Are Leaving Like Rats on a Sinking Ship

It all started in the second week of January with Microsoft confirming the departure of Bruce Jaffe, Corporate Vice President, Corporate Development. But Jaffe signaled only the beginning of what was to come. It is hard not to look at Jaffe as a trend setter, but the fact of the matter is that lately Microsoft top executives have illustrated an...

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Forget Vista - Windows 7 Is Here

Well Windows 7, the replacement for Windows Vista is here. Don’t bother with vista service pack 1 or with service pack 3 for windows xp, Microsoft has currently has already started distributing early copies of its new system to partners.

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Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Turn Your $60 Router into a Super-Router with Tomato

Since last year there's been a lot of development of open source firmwares, and today we're taking a look at my new favorite, a firmware called Tomato. It does almost everything you expect, from Wi-Fi signal boosting to Quality of Service bandwidth allocation, in addition to offering a simplified interface chock full of fancy charts and graphs

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America's Most Wired Cities

What's America's most wired city? You might guess someplace in Silicon Valley, Los Angeles or San Diego. East Coast fans might bet on New York or even Chicago. But you've got to head south.

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Future conceptual computer

We have already seen many conceptual computers. Some of them were nearer to reality, others not very much. This conceptual computer relates to the second category that makes it more interesting.

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eSATA to shed the power plug

eSATA is an external version of the Serial ATA technology used to hook up internal PCs, but today external eSATA drives need their own power supply. But recently, the Serial ATA International Organization (SATA-IO) announced it's working on a version that will let external drives draw power over the cable that connects the drive to a computer.

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MediaDefender Hacker Speaks Out

In September 2007, anti-piracy company MediaDefender's emails went public after a hacker gained access to their systems. The attacks cost the company a huge amount of money, not to mention acute embarrassment. Now the person behind the attacks speaks.

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Why Linux Users Should Be Furious At BBC

Recently the BBC had a bit of a wake up call regarding numbers and how many Linux users were really out there. Why does any of this matter? It has to do with something the BBC provides called the iPlayer. Seriously, relying on ActiveX is so "1990's" that it's painful, and as luck would have it, the Linux users who wish to use this BBC player...

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Linux PC Models Multiply As Vista Struggles

Demand for Linux systems is such that some retailers are selling out. Last year, for instance, Wal-Mart for a time couldn't fulfill orders for Everex's $199 gPC.

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Thursday, January 10, 2008

Give XP the performance tools of Vista

Windows Vista has an all-in-one window for monitoring the health of your system and tweaking its performance — but what if you use XP, not Vista?With just a couple of downloads and a few drags and drops, you can add a Vista-like performance center to Windows XP.

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Windows Server 2008 Behind 'Slow' Microsoft.com

The company is stress testing "Longhorn" but Web research firm Alexa said Microsoft's main page lags behind 75% of sites on the Internet in terms of page load times.

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USB 3.0 in the flesh [

Get ready, speed freaks. USB 3.0, the oft-rumored, much-discussed, rarely seen new standard heading our way has been spotted, sliced, chopped, and diced at CES 2008.

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AT&T openly says it may filter Internet content

According to Brad Stone over at The New York Times, AT&T openly stated at CES that they may start filtering Internet content. This is a very big announcement because most ISPs (even Comcast) have up until this point claimed to be net neutral. So much for being a wide-open pathway to the Information Superhighway

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AT&T: We May Not Stay Net Neutral

AT&T executive James Cicconi, senior vice president of external & legal affairs must not read the news before opening their mouths. The New York Times Bits Blog is reporting this morning that representatives at CES have openly stated today “that they may start filtering Internet content.”

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Sysadmin tries, fails at being l337 hax0r, gets jail time

A 51-year-old sysadmin has gotten a record jail sentence after attempting (and failing) to write code that would have destroyed everything on one of his company's servers.

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Tuesday, January 8, 2008