Archive for December 2010

Finding What You Need   Leave a comment

The sheer number of search engines, directories and metasearch sites can leave one wondering where to look for information.  How do you know if the information is positioned due to quality or payment?  In the latest news, one site was abusing its customers as a rule because of the old customer service addage that a satisfied customer will tell noone because satisfaction is expected but a dissatisfied customer will tell 10.  Well that was created well before the Internet.  Now a dissatisfied customer has the ability to reach literally MILLIONS of potential customers with ONE post. The site in question was intentionally abusing it’s customers so they would post about it, thus increasing their position on the search engines.  Google announced the creation of an algorithm that will attempt to prevent this practice but there are still many other methods that search engines use for rankings that have nothing to do with the content on the website itself.  This page lists a few of my favorites as a starting point for additional suggestions.

Posted December 4, 2010 by jcorbintcl in Search Engines

Being Secure on the Internet   Leave a comment

Securing your connection is one of the most overlooked items on most users home networks.  Most just plug it in and go or assume the installer from the ISP secured it.  The only thing they secure is the modem itself.  In terms of Telephone company, consider the provided modem the demarc for the Internet connection.  Anything inside of the modem is up to the user which would include the router.  I have an Internet Security page to start you off in the right direction with some configuration hints and a couple security testing applications.

Posted December 4, 2010 by jcorbintcl in Internet Security

Maintaining Computer Performance   Leave a comment

Sometimes our computers just seem like they aren’t working quite right.  They are taking forever to boot up, slow to launch programs, Internet connections just drag.  Some of these symptoms are beyond our control such as high Internet traffic slowing down the connection in the evenings, however, we can do a lot to improve some.  The web page on this blog simply attempts to barely scratch the surface.  We could go into detail with programs such as nLite or vLite and WebDirStat but this is Computer Maintenance 101.  I have selected a few programs that can be safely run right from install without hurting the computer provided the user doesn’t change any defaults.

Posted December 4, 2010 by jcorbintcl in Computer Maintenance

Ditching the wires but not the Security   Leave a comment

Too many people figure they will just go to the nearest consumer electronics store and buy a wireless router to use their netbook while watching tv. Of course, in my opinion, netbooks are a whole different animal and a wonderful way for companies to sell half the computer for all of the price. Now we get the wireless router home and hook it up but ignore the instructions for securing it. Head on over to the Wireless Security Page to see how to make it harder for unwanted people to connect to your wireless network.

Posted December 3, 2010 by jcorbintcl in Wireless Network Security

Using your Email Efficiently   Leave a comment

Most of us that depend on Microsoft Office, use Outlook by default.  It is good to know that there are a few other options that don’t require the shelling out of a lot of money.  Thunderbird (by Mozilla) and Opera are two that could work.  I found Opera to be too bulky, trying to be all things at once.  However, if one wants the functionality and power of Outlook for free, consider Thunderbird. I have a few tips to start off the discussion on the Email Browsers & Services page.

Posted December 3, 2010 by jcorbintcl in Email Clients & Services

To Browse or Not to Browse, better yet HOW to Browse   Leave a comment

The anti-establishment people would have one believe that anything but IE is great.  I have tried many browsers and the top three are IE, Firefox, and Google Chrome.  Like anything, each one has its own pros and cons.  One thing is for sure though, if you intend on using Sharepoint, you should probably stick with IE. Some browsers will work well for some people but not others and a browser that I don’t like, someone else will swear by.  So the only sure thing about browsers is to try a couple and see what works for the way you browse. For my own review of the top three browsers, check out my Web Browsers page.

Posted December 3, 2010 by jcorbintcl in Web Browsers

Completed Security+   Leave a comment

Security+I studied for a month for this exam and figured I had a great chance to pass easily.  By the time I had finished 20 questions, I figured I had just wasted $250.  Upon calming down and concentrating, I came to the end and hit submit.  20-30 seconds later, which seemed like an eternity, the screen popped up Congratulations, You Passed.  What a relief. Now I can proudly display the logo.

Posted December 2, 2010 by jcorbintcl in CompTia Security+