Computer News for 5/20/2007

Symantec false positive cripples thousands of Chinese PCs A signature update to Symantec’s anti-virus software crippled thousands of Chinese PCs Friday when the security software took two critical Windows .dll files for [tag]malware[/tag].

According to numerous blog entries from Chinese computer users, a virus signature database seeded yesterday mistook two system files of a Chinese edition of Windows XP SP2 as a Trojan horse which Symantec dubs “Backdoor.Haxdoor.” The anti-virus software — Norton AntiVirus, for example, or the anti-virus component of the Norton 360 or Norton Internet Security suites — then quarantined the netapi32.dll and lsasrv.dll files.

“With these files removed, Windows XP will no longer start up, and even the system Safe Mode no longer functions,” said one user writing to the alt.comp.anti-virus newsgroup this morning.

Google Licenses Technology for 3D Maps Google has licensed technology that will enable [tag]Google[/tag] to map out 3-D versions of cities world wide.

According to a Mercury News report, the technology was developed by a team of Stanford University students and was used to run a robotic car that won the 2005 DARPA Grand Challenge.

Although Google is the market leader in mapping, to date it has lagged behind Microsoft?s Virtual Earth in terms of 3-D functionality.

Dell announces the models for Ubuntu We will be launching a Linux based OS (Ubuntu) on the E520, 1505 and XPS 410 starting next Thursday, 5/24. We expect these systems to be less than 1% of our OS mix for the entire year which is ~20,000 systems annually. Please cover the huddle deck below with your team by EOB Sunday. If any questions come up, please let me know so I can address them before launch.

The goal of launching Linux is to continue to give our customers more choices to customize their new Dell. Providing more options to our Linux Enthusiast customer group will hopefully create even more Raving Fans!!

Governments using filters to censor Internet, survey finds With the aid of sophisticated software, government censorship of the Internet is spreading into a global phenomenon, with tech-savvy governments filtering forbidden themes from politics and human rights to sexuality and religion, according to a new academic survey of 40 countries.

In the past five years, the practice has grown beyond a handful of countries, including Iran, China and Saudi Arabia, to 26 nations that block a wide range of topics as they adopt filtering techniques, according to an OpenNet Initiative report to be issued Friday in Oxford, England.