Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Yahoo! Get away from there - QUICKLY!

Although I am on vacation this is too important for quite a few of my customers. Here it goes:

If you have a Yahoo email address you need to read this! All others can relax - for now.

It has happened; this ZD-Net article has the details why for some of their users Yahoo has made it impossible to access their emails. Currently for "some users" only but what if this "test" proves successful for Yahoo? They will do it to all accounts! You can bet on that!

Why did these good people with a Yahoo email address get bloaked from accessing their emails? They used an Ad blocker because
  1. they could not stand the many obnoxious ads and/or
  2. they had heard about the many virus infected ads Yahoo has served in the past or
  3. they just happen to be my customers.
My recommendation: Set up a Gmail account with Google. Be careful to give Google only the minimally required info about yourself.

Then set up your new Gmail account to automatically pull all mails from the Yahoo account. Google so far always has been far better at blocking malicious content from the Internet.

Let's hope that Yahoo's attempt to force feed advertisements fizzles out and becomes a big failure.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

2015-11-19 WBKV Talking Points

Upgrade to Windows 10 will be enforced by January!
The only way around is a change in Windows Update Settings. Details in 4 weeks.

Beware of wrapper programs when downloading ANY programs. Even well known so-called “download sites” are nasty malware slingers. Update Chrome browser from Google ONLY!

Beware of that cheap tablet on Amazon or eBay! Chinese knock offs with pre-installed advertisement malware abound!

Some of Edward Snowden's tips for privacy on home computers:
  • Use an ad-blocker. Ads with active content (moving or playing anything in the ad) require the use of Javascript or Flash; actively block all advertisements.
  • Use a password manager. Despite the many reminders telling people to use different and complex passwords, a huge percentage of users maintain borderline idiotic approaches. Simply: Get a password manager. It will protect you.
  • Use two-factor authentication. Gmail, Twitter, Dropbox, Hotmail and Facebook offer 2FA free of charge. Even if your password does get exposed, you still have a text message as backup.
  • Use the HTTPS Everywhere browser plug-in. It comes from the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) and will enforce encrypted browser communication.
  • Encrypt your hard drive. Relatively easy these days but be careful to do two things:
    1 Have a long encryption phrase for best results
    2 Make darn'd sure you remember that phrase. The small slowdown in performance is tolerable on a modern computer.
  • Be smart with your security questions. Don't use your mother's maiden name everywhere; or your first school. Mix things up; one account gets hacked the same information does not apply everywhere else.

Monday, November 9, 2015

Early End to Windows 7/8?

According to this Neowin article Microsoft is telling manufacturers to stop producing computers with Windows 7 and/or Windows 8 much earlier than usually.

Another heavy handed Microsoft tactic. Draw your own conclusions.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

2015-11-05 WBKV Talking Points

Microsoft admits Windows 10 spying can not be stopped!
Reference here.

Microsoft will push Windows 10 onto computers with Windows 7 and 8.1.
The fun begins in January 2016 (or earlier if MS thinks it feasible).
Reference here.

We need to begin to talk publicly about alternatives to MS Windows! Yes, there are alternatives.
I promise an article about the alternative(s) in the near future.
And yes, in future this blog will talk about other computer operating systems but Windows.

What is the one, big major difference between Windows and the alternatives?
     Technically: Repositories are centrally managed.
     Economically: The alternatives are free; free as in no money.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Is Microsoft Pushing Windows 10?

Let me, at least by name, introduce Susan Bradley to you. The lady is a very experienced and knowledgeable system administrator in the world of Microsoft networks and she is a Microsoft MVP. She is very active on widely read internet forums and generally well respected.

Ms. Bradley started a petition on asking Microsoft's CEO Satya Nadella to reconsider the Windows 10 policy of forcing updates of the Windows operating system on user's machines.

Today Ms. Bradley posted  an update to her petition that you can find here.

I have little doubt that Microsoft could and will attempt something like that. I would consider this to be an intrusion into my personal and private sphere.
MS seems to think they own my computer! Have they gone nuts?

It is time that we begin to talk publicly about alternatives to MS Windows!

And before you ask, yes, there are alternatives. I do not want to discuss these here because this blog is named "Computer Trouble..." and that means trouble with MS Windows computers and I will keep it that way.