Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

So It Begins | Hurry – Save $312 | More.. (Free Stuff Too)

Good News/Bad News. Which do you want to hear first?

Since it’s very brief, let me get the “bad” out of the way first. The other day I noticed that some results from a search query had been deleted and were unavailable to me (hey, I have been busy, busy.. and I just noticed now..)

Now, I am not going to go into some rant about DRM in general or the DMCA in particular. I can see both sides of that particular coin. But I am going to ask you to pause and ponder two concepts: “creeping incrementalism” (aka “a slippery slope”), and “who is watching the watchers?” Not, strain your brain, or anything, just.. muse.
(And is an interesting site..)

And now for the good: an alert reader brought a deal to my attention I had to jump on..

Look what Easter Bunny has for you this spring!

Backup your entire system, protect it from any possible kind of malware, get rid of spam and prevent any phishing attempts, shrink documents to extremely small sizes without affecting the content, edit photographs, share any USB devices over the internet, and restore lost passwords. All of this is now available in one super-bundle – for just $49.99.

For two weeks only, top software vendors unite to bring you the best solutions for your digital life.

All at once. At an unbelievable price. For the first time in the PC world!

The countdown has already started — Easter Bunny is only here until April 9. Catch him and get your loot. It’s time to act fast! (To learn more/buy, click here

Now, I know, the problem with bundle deals like these is you often don’t use everything included. But Acronis Home sells for $50 by itself (and is worth it) so… I jumped. Thank you Dear Reader!

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Bonus!!! BitsDuJour is giving away MailWasher Pro 2012 for today only.

“MailWasher Pro can help purge your inbox of spam, plus unwanted newsletters, large emails, and any other annoying email….

Intercept spam and viral emails before they get downloaded to your computer.
Set up Friends lists to let email through or Blacklists to stop specific senders.
Teach the program to learn which email messages should be allowed through.
Send bounceback emails to former friends, lovers, and current stalkers :-)
Control spam and viral email on an unlimited number of email accounts.
Control SPAM fast! Using simultaneous checking, MailWasher Pro 2012 can download and check up to 25 email messages per second.
Rescue accidentally deleted emails!
Check the origin received emails against DNS spam blacklist servers.
Block potential viruses by examining each email for any suspicious code.
Purchase with BitsDuJour’s discount coupon code and get all this at a promotional price!”

MailWasher Pro 2012 PC Software with a 100% off Discount Coupon Code – Stop Delivery of Spam and Viruses

Today’s quote:The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits.” ~ Albert Einstein

Breaking News: Facebook is down. Worker productivity rises. U.S. climbs out of recession.

Just kidding! Have a great TGIF everybody!

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Bonus Bonus: gamers.. read the Comments below.. (hint).

Today’s reading reco: iPad Wi-Fi problems: Anatomy of a released defect

Some iPad 3 owners are having problems with the unit’s Wi-Fi, while most are working OK. Having a small percentage of failures is just a fact of life in the electronics manufacturing game.Read more..

Copyright 2007-2012 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.

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April 6, 2012 Posted by | News, shopping for, software, tech, XP | , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

System Restore/ID Theft/Startup programs

“System Restore won’t work”, “I’m worried about ID Theft, how do I know if an email is legit?”, “I can’t get this #$*& program out of my Startup folder” — these are examples of some of the questions I have received since posting my articles on these topics. Today I’m going to review, and provide more solutions and answers.

Tip of the day: Since I’m going to cover the questions above, there is not going to be a single “Tip of the day” today. Instead, there will be “Today’s three questions”…
More on System Restore: What to do when System Restore just refuses to work. As I mentioned in my first System Restore post, SR simply is not a failsafe miracle worker. There are troubles that can occur that it simply does not repair — such as a corrupted SAM database. It is however a good place to start. It does undo a lot of the damage you can accidentally do to your machine. This fact is why you should always make a back up of your system — either a “disk image” made with a 3rd-party utility like Acronis True Image, or Norton Ghost, and/or Windows Backup Utility (Start >Programs >Accessories >System tools >Backup).
I stated in the prior article, and will repeat here, that you may have to repeat the System Restore process several times before one “snapshot” finally takes. When you use SR, you will see a calendar with available snapshots in bold dates. You should see several. Start with the most recent date and time, and work your way backwards. If you have done this with no luck, you probably have one of those troubles System Restore is not designed for. Either look elsewhere for solutions, or call for some Tech Support (we Tech Support folks need to make a living too, you know).

Legit vs. Phishing: “how do I know if an email is legit?” In my post about the rocket scientist, I discussed phishing and recommended an anti-phishing site toolbar, which combats a form of phishing called “pharming“.
I suggest you take no chances with emails. Simply do not click on links in emails. Also, realize that your bank will not send you links. They know about phishing, and they figure you already know their URL (you should have it bookmarked, so use that…or call them directly). Also be aware that just because an email claims to be from a friend or relative, doesn’t mean that it is. If you are not expecting an attachment.exe “executable” (application) or “you gotta see this!” .jpg from Uncle Fred, by all means don’t open it! Email him and ask him, “did you send me a..?” It is an easy thing for an Evil Doer to spoof a Sender address.
And finally, make sure your antivirus definitions are up to date. If it is not already on by default, open your antivirus’ Options and look in “Update Options” for “Download and install new definitions automatically” (or words to that effect) and make sure it’s selected. If available, have it set to scan email and email attachments as well. (If it’s not, consider switching to the free Avast! or AVG antivirus programs..)

Removing stubborn start up programs: If the methods I described in “My Startup folder is a clown car” proved insufficient for getting rid of a really determined program, there are three more methods you can try. The first is to read my Manage your Startup programs; second is msconfig, and the last is editing the Registry.
If these easy methods in the article didn’t do the trick, start by opening the msconfig utility. Click Start >Run and type in “msconfig” (no quotes), and then click on the Startup tab. Here you will see a list of the programs scheduled to start when Windows boots. Uncheck the checkbox next to the program you are having the troubles with. You will need to restart your system for the changes to take effect.

The second method, editing the Registry, is for advanced users who are comfortable treading in such risky waters. Changes made to the Registry are immediate, and there’s no “undo” feature. If you feel you are determined to dive in, please create a Restore Point before starting and back up the Registry to a .txt file first. Please read (or re-familiarize yourself with) Microsoft’s detailed how-to here. They Key you’ll be working with is HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\CurrentVersion\Run.
But please: this is not for the inexperienced. Do not try this without reading and understanding what editing the Registry is about, and what damage one mistake can do. First use the aforementioned methods and please consider simply using Add/Remove Programs to “retire” the troublesome program altogether…or try a program like StartUp Cop.

Today’s free link(s): I am satisfied with this freeware Startup manager: Ashampoo StartUp Tuner 2.

If you have been a victim of a phish, have been clicking unsolicited links willy-nilly, or let a window that magically popped open one day “scan your computer to remove infections”.. or just want to know your scores — get a free credit report , and find out if you’re the only “you” accessing your credit.
[Note: I believe it is worth it to have your credit reports monitored.. which is not a free service. For $5/month, I use , which monitors the big three report companies.]

Copyright 2007-8 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved.jaanix post to jaanix

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June 9, 2008 Posted by | advice, computers, how to, PC, security, software, System Restore, tech, troubleshooting, Windows | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment