Spring 2012 Newsletter ...
Windows 7, Cloud computing, Java exploits, free antivirus software, online scanners, and more
Now that Windows 7 has been out for a while and XP is impossible to buy on a new computer, I thought I should discuss it. In general, I like it. I'm not crazy about the way the security is implemented- there are too many permissions and annoyances unless you are an administrator. Some of the gadgets are convenient. There are some compatibility problems with software, so be prepared to update/upgrade. Windows 8 with its Metro interface is waiting in the wings. http://www.pcworld.com/article/251282/windows_8s_metro_ui_7_things_you_may_just_hate.html More and more people are moving to Apple products with good reason.
Cloud Computing... most of you have probably heard the phase, but what does it mean? In "the old days" we had dumb terminals connected to a mainframe or minicomputer where the thinking occurred. The cycle is coming back to that. Our "terminals" are smarter... they can be a browser or remote desktop, and the connection is a network or the Internet. This makes updates, moving from location to location much easier. I have several clients using Remote Desktop to access common programs running on "virtual computers". Microsoft, Google, and others are offering products "in the cloud" Office 360 is an example. I can provide you a free trial if you want. Please contact me for details and a link. For many things these work well. The drawback?? What happens when (not IF) you lose connectivity. That becomes a BIG problem. Remember that when considering these solutions. Can I run Windows software on my Mac?? Yes... with extra software which essentially makes your Mac a Windows machine. A better way for businesses is to use the Remote Desktop client for Macs and run your Windows software on a Windows Remote Desktop server. The software runs on a Windows machine, and your Mac has the screen, mouse, etc. and you can access it anywhere you have the Internet. The same is true of a Windows machine too with Remote Desktop.
One continuing reminder on anti-malware products... I recommend frequent scans with Malwarebytes available free at http://www.malwarebytes.org My favorite antivirus is the FREE Microsoft Security Essentials. You can learn more and download it at http://www.microsoft.com/Security_Essentials/ . As another "tidbit"... almost all the virus/malware infections I have seen in the past 6 months have come through Java on machines protected by Symantec products. DO THOSE JAVA UPDATES!!! A new addition to the antivirus arsenal is Hitman Pro. It is marketed as a "second opinion" scanner and works well. http://www.surfright.nl/en They offer a free version.
That's it for this newsletter... enjoy the rest of spring !!
Until next time... Happy Computing !
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