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Comment: Not scientific, but... (Score 1) 237

by spywhere (#46106667) Attached to: Hard Drive Reliability Study Flawed?
FWIW (not much), I've bought forty or fifty 2.5" and 3.5" drives a year for the last nine years, mostly for resale in my computer repair business; lately, I pick them up at our local Tiger Direct retail store or order them from Amazon. I have the fewest problems with Seagate drives.

Almost every time I buy another brand, the damn thing takes a crap and I get to do the job again for free. (Thank FSM Maxtor went away: they were the WORST).

Comment: two more steps (Score 1) 310

by spywhere (#45830225) Attached to: 4 Tips For Your New Laptop
Create an additional administrative account, with a complex password (but don't lose it). You will use this to effect repairs if malware infects your main profile. (Most Win6.x malware is confined to the user profile and C:\ProgramData folders to avoid the UAC prompt).

Download the Hosts file from http://winhelp2002.mvps.org/hosts.htm, which will protect you from all kinds of threats (and it hides a buttload of advertising, too).

Comment: We called them (Score 5, Interesting) 225

by spywhere (#45660351) Attached to: Doom Is Twenty Years Old
My roommate came home back in '93 with a bootleg copy of the original game. After we installed it, we were concerned about "going to HELL," so we called id Software.

"Hi, we're calling because someone gave us a bootleg copy of Doom...
"And...?"
"We need the address, so we can send a check... how much do we owe you?"

The person on the phone, after recovering from their shock, gave us the address, and told us to make sure to include OUR mailing address with the check.

A few weeks later, we received a boxed copy of Doom, and a bunch of other cool swag.

Comment: Re:IPv6 for older hardware (Score 1) 174

by spywhere (#35385678) Attached to: Most IPv6-certified Home Network Gear Buggy
I would be shocked if Cisco ever produces a Linksys router that is worth the money, IPv6 or not. The hundreds I've seen in the field are so unreliable that I'd never buy one, and I replace one or two more every week. Linksys is the reason I carry two Netgear or Dlink wireless routers in the car.
Sure, I do see other brands fail after a year or two, but I've seen more brand new defective Linksys routers than I have Netgear routers that dies of old age.

Comment: I hate to ask, but... (Score 3, Informative) 155

by spywhere (#34192428) Attached to: Research Inches Toward Processor-Specific Malware
"Windows/Office/IE monoculture is disappearing faster than equatorial glaciers..."
Do you actually work in corporate IT? Windows XP and IE6/7 dominate. Apple has little hope of taking hold in anything bigger than the art department at Comcast, and Linux is what the geekiest artist-type there uses at home.

I'm not advocating Windows... I'm simply pointing out that they are not going anywhere.

Comment: The scammers are good at avoiding chargebacks (Score 4, Informative) 173

by spywhere (#33052074) Attached to: Rogue Anti-Virus Victims Rarely Fight Back
I remove this crap for a living, and I've seen the scam up close.
When the victim pays, the scareware purveyor removes most of the program... which "fixes" the PC. They leave behind a back door, and Registry entries making the machine download .exe files without prompting, but they mostly stop bombarding the victim with warnings... for a month or two.

Then, they attack again, trying to get more money. I've had a few customers who paid for the first attack, then finally called for help when they got hit again; it was easy to see what the first program did, and track down the quick site redirect that brought on the second infestation.

The real criminals here: Visa and Mastercard, for maintaining merchant accounts for these scumbags. Brian Krebs exposed this, and got it shut down... for two weeks or so, and they've back ever since without interruption.

Comment: I saw plenty of these (Score 1) 484

by spywhere (#32733328) Attached to: Dell Selling Faulty PCs
I designed the XP image for a chain of retirement communities. The first rollout was on 120 Optiplex GX270 desktops... all of which were affected by this.
Fortunately, only one of them died in the initial rollout. By the time they started going bad en masse, the image was ruled out as the cause... and the blown capacitors were clearly visible... and the story was already known online.

Wherever you go...There you are. - Buckaroo Banzai

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