Tech – for Everyone

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

Video Tutorial and Sunday Beauty 59

Folks, regular readers have heard me say (many times) that I use Firefox as my web browser; and that I do so mainly for the safety provided by the security “add on” NoScript. Today, I have a short video which explains the basic How To (and the “why”) of NoScript.

Fact: The Internet has become a dangerous place.

And it being Sunday, how about a pretty picture?

Click on image to see more by this artist (reco'd)

venice-19 (romantic venice at night) by Alan Light, courtesy of Flickr Commons

Enjoy the rest of your weekend everybody!

Today’s quote:The difference between perseverance and obstinacy is that one comes from a strong will, and the other from a strong won’t.” ~ Henry Ward Beecher

Copyright 2007-2011 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.

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September 25, 2011 Posted by | browsers, computers, Firefox, how to, Internet, security | , , , , | 6 Comments

Boost your wireless for 25¢

How can I boost my wireless signal strength?

Folks, I have been asked many times about what can be done to improve the wireless signal produced by a home router/WAP. A weak signal slows you down, and can cause “connectivity issues” (aka “disconnects”).

Like so many things in life, there is no one, single, best answer, but, methods for achieving a stronger wireless signal, at a greater distance, include:
* Replace your router’s firmware with a Linux-based system that allows for “antenna gain” adjustment. (Advanced) — free (some risk).
* Add a “reflector” (Simple) — free. (and.. today’s video!)
* Replace your antenna with a “signal boosting” (aka “range extending”) antenna, or a directional antenna. (Simple) — $25 -$50.
* Upgrade to a Wireless N router. (Simple) — $100 (or less).

I recommend the last option. Wireless N routers are quite reasonably priced now. But, if you have some tinfoil, scissors, and glue, I can tell you that a parabolic reflector will improve your signal (aka “gain”) .. in one direction, and it won’t cost you much more than a few minutes of your time to try it!

This short video tutorial demonstrates:

And the template is here,

And, you may want to look around the Internet some. There are, literally, thousands of these “hacks” and tips.

Copyright 2007-2010 © Tech Paul. All Rights Reserved. jaanix post to jaanix.

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March 30, 2010 Posted by | advice, computers, gadgets, hardware, how to, networking, performance, routers and WAPs, tech, tweaks, upgrading | , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

How To Block iFrames*

If you are interested in Tech, and visit Websites such as this one, it will not be very long before you read about Firefox. (In fact just this week I posted an article.) And, it won’t be long before you see NoScript mentioned. Odds are, you already have.

NoScript is a small program you download and add ‘into’ Firefox to enhance its functionality (these small programs are known variously as “add-ons”, “plug-ins”, and “extensions”– different words for the same concept.)

NoScript gets mentioned in the Tech media a lot because it is a security tool that automatically “blocks” (prevents from running) certain web page ‘elements’ (scripts) — Java, Flash, JavaScript, and XSS– from running unlesNSOptss you click the Option button and select “Allow”, or “Temporarily allow”.

Which puts you in control, and goes a long ways toward preventing “drive-by downloads“, and other malicious Internet attacks and activity from occurring should you happen to visit a Website which has been poisoned” by a hacker.
(I don’t mean to depress you, but the current state of the Internet is so insecure that this can be, literally, any Website.)

By default, NoScript is a powerful tool (to read the NoScript “About” page, click here) and for many people is the primary reason they have made the switch to Firefox.

Tip of the day: Enhance your NoScript protection by turning on the IFRAME blocker feature.
IFRAMES are another dynamic Web element that cyber-criminals are now using as an “attack vector” (aka “method”) with great success. Like the scripts mentioned above, IFrame attacks can happen invisibly and automatically. Oh, the joys of Web 2.0!
[note: today’s advice should be of interest to Mac and Linux users too.]

1) In Firefox, click on “Tools”, then “Add-ons”
2) Scroll ’till you find NoScript, and click the “Options” button. (If you have not yet installed NoScript, click the “Get Add-ons” icon in the upper-left.)
3) Click on the Plugins tab. Place a check in the “Forbid <IFRAME>” checkbox.

That’s it. You’re done. Now when you visit a site that uses IFrames, you will have to approve them (aka “whitelist”) before they’ll appear.

[Note: the scripts and tools (Web 2.0 “features”) mentioned in this article are NOT in themselves bad or dangerous, and it is thanks to them that the Web is such a rich and interactive environment.. but, in the wrong hands they can — and are — being used with criminal intent.]

Related: A short video tutorial for using NoScript can be seen here.

Today’s free link: One of the more disturbing (outright alarming, if you ask me) hacker uses of IFrame attacks is the alteration of Search Engine results (Yes, you can’t truly trust Google, Yahoo!, or MSN anymore) and Internet Security blogger Bill Mullins has posted an excellent article on this subject, Fake/Redirected Search Results – Consequences for You

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

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November 7, 2008 Posted by | advice, computers, Firefox, how to, Internet, PC, security, tech | , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments