Microsoft News

Microsoft Search Filter

I recently was doing some Windows 7 related searches on Microsoft.com and was going to use the filter to knock it down to only Windows 7 related items, much to my surprise it doesn’t look like Microsoft has updated their filter for awhile:

Microsoft Search Filter

Windows 7, Windows Vista, Office 2007 nor Office 2010 are options.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - April 22, 2011 at 2:01 pm

Categories: Bing, Microsoft News, Search   Tags:

What To Do When You Encounter A Windows PC Error Message

What To Do When You Encounter A Windows PC Error Message

Are you fed up with your computer’s slow speed?

Are error messages, such as file type errors. a common occurrence on your Windows computer?

If you answered Yes, then this article is all you need to get rid of your computer woes forever.

In this article, we will discuss tips that will allow you to troubleshoot common Windows PC errors, such as .pcb file type errors on your own.

Tip#1 Perform a malware scan

Did you know that malware infection is often the root cause of a myriad of computer errors, such as the .daa file type error?

Malware programs, if present on your computer, can create havoc by deleting or altering various files and eating into your computer resources. In case you notice symptoms, such as a sudden increase in errors, or a drop in your computer’s performance, it is likely your computer’s security is breached.

The solution is to run a complete malware check on your Windows computer. To do this, first update your security tool with the latest malware definitions and security updates. Next, isolate your PC by disconnecting it from the Internet and from any network share that it is attached to. Now, restart your computer in Safe Mode and run a thorough malware scan. The simple steps illustrated below take you through how to start Windows in Safe Mode:

  1. Close all the running programs and restart your computer.
  2. As Windows reloads, press and hold the F8 key.
  3. Select the Safe Mode option using the arrow keys in the Advanced Windows Boot Option Menu and press Enter.

To ensure that all threats present on your PC are detected and deleted and quarantined, we recommend that you run the scan twice.

Update your Windows, driver, and software files

The next step is to update your Windows, driver, and software files.

  • Updating Window files – Windows PC’s come with a useful built-in Automatic Update feature that ensures new Windows updates are automatically downloaded and installed on your Windows computer. Ensure that this option is enabled on your computer. In case, you are using a version of Windows prior to Windows ME (Automatic Update feature was first introduced with Windows ME) then you will need to manually download any new updates and security patches available for your version of Windows from the Microsoft website.
  • Updating Software files – Many software too have an Update tool that you can use to update the software files. If the feature is absent in some of your installed software, then for these applications manually download the new updates by visiting the software manufacturer’s website.
  • Updating third-party drivers – When it comes to updating third-party drivers, you have two options – update drivers manually or use a reliable third-party driver update tool.

Use a reliable file extension repair software

A lot of file type errors, such as .aspx file type errors occur due to damaged file openers. The issue can be fixed by deploying a reliable file extension software. Such software fixes the damaged file openers, providing you quick access to files generating errors.

2 comments - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - January 29, 2011 at 9:28 pm

Categories: How To, Malware, Microsoft News, Tips, Windows Update   Tags: , , , , ,

Live Mesh Updates

I have been playing with the Live Mesh Tech Preview for a week or so now, all I have really used it for is to play with uploading files, which, last time I tried you still did one at a time, and the remote desktop connections. The remote desktop is the killer part of it as it is free and requires only the Live Mesh software, at least, as far as I have noticed. I have only tried it on a couple desktops, one behind a corporate firewall and one behind my wireless router and they both have worked great. Today the Live Mesh blog announced that it has been updated and that it will be available to more people.

Version numbers
Live Mesh software: 0.9.3103.9
Live Desktop: 0.9.3103.9

Fixes

  • Raised the limit on the total number of customers we’ll allow to access the Live Mesh Tech Preview.
  • Expanded availability: you can sign up directly, with no waiting list, if your country/region is the United States, United Kingdom, Australia, or New Zealand.
  • Removed the limit on the number of Live Mesh invitations you have. Invite friends and family members to the Live Mesh Tech Preview.
  • For our customers in countries/regions other than those above, we’ve greatly simplified the waiting list process. You no longer need to sign up through Microsoft Connect. You can sign in with you Windows Live ID on http://www.mesh.com/, click Sign Up, and you’ll automatically be notified once Live Mesh is available in your country/region.
  • Improved the performance of peer-to-peer synchronization.
  • General performance improvements.

Source: Live Mesh: Next Update Announced

So, I now have unlimited invites, if anyone wants to try it, email me at webmaster at this site and I will send you an invite, you will need a Windows Live ID to signup though.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - July 30, 2008 at 5:53 pm

Categories: Live, Microsoft News   Tags: , ,

Yahoo! Creating Digg Competitor

According to a post on Valleywag, Yahoo! is working on it’s own digg competitor, Yahoo! Buzz. One would think the folks at Yahoo! would be smart enough to not even try this, especially after the way all the other digg competition has fared. Yahoo! does have the most visited site in the world, so, it’s possible they could blow this thing up and have a social that can actually compete with digg, but I doubt it.

The pace of product launches from Yahoo is breathless — and with a whiff of desperation. On February 26, Yahoo plans to beta launch Yahoo Buzz as a competitor to Digg, and a tipster supplied Valleywag with screenshots. Buzz, built under the direction of VP Tapan Bhat, will begin with a limited number of publishers — about 100 — and will rank stories based on popular search results and user voting. Source: Valleywag

Valleywag does go on to say that Buzz will be open to the entire Yahoo! Publisher network, meaning, according to Valleywag, if you use their ads on your sites, they will allow your sites in Buzz. If this was leaked at a different time, maybe this wouldn’t smell a little of desperation, and now, a few members of Yahoo’s board are taking it upon themselves to try to make sure Yang and his cohorts aren’t just turning down Microsoft because they hate Microsoft. Hell, there’s money to be made here. ;)

While Yahoo! chief Jerry Yang desperately seeks an alternative to Microsoft’s $44.6 billion hostile takeover, an independent group of Yahoo’s board members are taking the lead in shaping the company’s future. Source: BOARD BUCKS YANG

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - February 16, 2008 at 7:45 am

Categories: Microsoft News, Yahoo!   Tags:

Mac OS X Has More Vulnerabilities Than XP and Vista

Larry Dignan at ZDnet has posted a comparison of the numbers of vulnerabilities between Mac OS X and Windows, both XP and Vista, and while the numbers look like Microsoft has a big lead on security, it certainly does not mean that. It just says that Mac OS X has 5 times the flaws of XP and Vista every month in 2007.

Windows XP, Vista, and Mac OS X vulnerability stats for 2007
XP Vista XP + Vista Mac OS X
Total extremely critical 3 1 4 0
Total highly critical 19 12 23 234
Total moderately critical 2 1 3 2
Total less critical 3 1 4 7
Total flaws 34 20 44 243
Average flaws per month 2.83 1.67 3.67 20.25

Source: Mac versus Windows vulnerability stats for 2007

Now, before everyone does the Mac versus PC thing, this is just a comparison of the vulnerabilities and in no way does it say that Windows is more secure, now, if they did a comparison of the actual number of exploits taking advantage of the same vulnerabilities, I am sure the number would be severely tilted to Microsoft as they have the larger installed base. Plus, after reading some of the comments, it doesn’t take into account how many of these are actually from Apple for their software, as they distribute patches for the software that comes with their OS as well, lots of it being open source.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - December 18, 2007 at 7:46 pm

Categories: Apple, Microsoft News, Windows Vista, Windows XP   Tags: , , ,

Top 20 Worst Windows Features

This is a funny look at some of the worst Windows “features” of all time, from Drivespace to ActiveX Controls, if you hate it, it’s probably in there.

In November of 1985, Microsoft released Windows 1.0. And thus began Windows’ 22-year reign (to date) as the world’s most popular, most irritating computing platform. Which Windows features have been responsible for the most angst? We tallied this list of offenders with the advice of PC World editors and contributors as well as members of the PCW community. Our roster includes several kinds of worsts: Just plain bad ideas, good ideas gone awry, and a few ideas that started out terrible but eventually became surprisingly decent. Click on the images above to see ‘em all, starting with number 20. Source: The 20 Worst Windows Features of All Time From Windows 95′s Active Desktop to Vista’s UAC, a loving tribute to the tools, technologies, and applets that drive us absolutely bonkers.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - July 5, 2007 at 2:17 pm

Categories: Microsoft News, Tech News   Tags:

Application Developers Targeting Windows Less

In a survey from Evans Data, application developers are targeting Windows 12% less than last year, while Linux gained 34 percent. The change sounds bigger than it really is as 64.8% of them are targeting Windows and 11.8% are targeting Linux.

“We attribute [the decline] largely to the increase in developers beginning to target Linux and different Linux [distributions]. Both Novell and Red Hat are the two dominant ones right now,” said John Andrews, the CEO of Evans Data.

The arrival of Windows Vista likely only kept the numbers from being even worse. “I think Vista probably offset some of the decline,” Andrews said.

The share for Windows is expected to drop another 2 percent, to about 63 percent, in the next year, Andrews said. Source: Survey: Windows loses ground with developers

Evans Data said the shift began two years ago and is picking up speed a little.

They also found the JavaScript is still the number 1 scripting language, but are expecting Ruby on Rails to pick up steam this next year.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - July 3, 2007 at 6:42 pm

Categories: Microsoft News   Tags:

Todays Tech 5/24/2007

Here are some of the latest technology stories floating around the internet today.

Wal-Mart to begin selling Dell PCs Initial word was that the Dell PCs would go on sale this weekend. A representative for Wal-Mart on Thursday morning said that the PCs are slated to be in stores on June 10, with two models each offered in a bundle priced below $700. Details on the PCs were not provided. Sam’s Club and Wal-Mart Canada stores will carry different models.

Copying HD DVD and Blu-ray discs may become legal Under a licensing agreement in its final stages, consumers may get the right to make several legal copies of HD DVD and Blu-ray Disc movies they’ve purchased, a concession by the movie industry that may quell criticism that DRM (digital rights management) technologies are too restrictive.

This is crazy. I can’t believe I just posted a story that said users MAY get the right to copy their OWN property. The movie and music industries suck and they are killing it all by themselves.

Flexible, full-color OLED On May 24, Sony unveiled what it is calling the world?s first flexible, full-color organic electroluminescent display (OLED) built on organic thin-film transistor (TFT) technology. OLEDs typically use a glass substrate, but Sony researchers developed new technology for forming organic TFT on a plastic substrate, enabling them to create a thin, lightweight and flexible full-color display.

Dell Offers Three Consumer Systems With Ubuntu 7.04 Later today, Dell will offer U.S customers three different systems with Ubuntu 7.04 installed: the XPS 410n and Dimension E520n desktops and the Inspiron E1505n notebook. These systems will be available at www.dell.com/open by 4pm CST today. Starting price for the E520n desktop and the E1505n notebook is $599; the XPS 410n starts at $849.

Why Are CC Numbers Still So Easy To Find? Some “script kiddie” tricks still work after all: Take the first 8 digits of a standard 16-digit credit card number. Search for them on Google in “nnnn nnnn” form. Since the 8-digit prefix of a given card number is often shared with many other cards, about 1/4 of credit card numbers in my random test, turned up pages that included other credit card numbers, and about 1 in 10 turned up a “treasure trove” of card numbers that were exposed through someone’s sloppily written Web app.

DOG (Distrust/Disdain of Google) moves in Me? Google is too secretive. Too unwilling to engage. Too aloof. Oh, and Eric Schmidt, Google?s CEO, has lost touch with how normal people think (if these quotes are correct, and that?s a big ?if?). If they are correct I think it?s evidence that he?s been hanging around too many advertising execs lately. Their goal is to put impulses into your mind so you take certain actions (like buy Diet Coke instead of Diet Pepsi). Believe it or not advertising execs talk like that. So, when Eric is reported to have said, during a visit to Britain this week: ?The goal is to enable Google users to be able to ask the question such as ?What shall I do tomorrow?? and ?What job shall I take??? we all get a little freaked out. We don?t want Google to know that much about us.

Windows XP SP3 in the Works – Microsoft Confirms They have confirmed service pack 3, but the date on that article is wrong, according to Microsoft the release date will be 1st half of 2008, whatever that means.

Cyber Crooks Hijack Activities of Large Web-Hosting Firm Brian Krebs talks about IPOWER Inc, on of the hosting companies that was recently featured by Stopbadware.org as one of the largest hosting companies that are currently silently installing malicious software, as detailed here, Exposing Hosting Companies with Malicious Websites. Brian says organized crime is responsible and IPOWER says it was one compromised server run by another company.

Google is failing the Microsoft litmus test If you want to evaluate the ?evil? quotient of any company?s strategy/behavior, consider how you?d feel about it if it were Microsoft in the driver seat.

Vista no panacea for PC sales Although Microsoft has characterized itself as happy with Vista adoption so far?and Bill Gates said last week at WinHEC that Microsoft had shipped 40 million copies?the release of the new operating system has not resulted in a significant bump in PC sales.

Skype Worm Variant Targets Other Instant Messaging Clients Yesterday, I discovered what appears to be a new collection of “Skype Worm” infection binaries in circulation – it uses the tried and tested methods employed by similar infections over the past few months, with the ultimate payload being the Stration Worm. Aside from that, there’s another little surprise waiting but we’ll get to that shortly…

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - May 24, 2007 at 5:14 pm

Categories: Dell, Google, Malicious Websites, Microsoft News, Tech News   Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Microsoft Security Update and Google Security Site

Couple of interesting security related stories I wanted to touch on. Google has been picking up the pace recently in being proactive about removing and blocking malicious websites from their search engine, recently they posted a study by them and Provos that said over 450,000 web pages are launching drive-by downloads of malware and another 700,000 web pages that launch downloads of suspicious software. Lots of news articles followed saying that Google said 1 in 10 websites are potentially malicious, lots of them, I thought they were misreading it, but I wasn’t for sure until today when Google launched a security blog saying it was being misreported.

Unfortunately, the scope of the problem has recently been somewhat misreported to suggest that one in 10 websites are potentially malicious. To clarify, a sample-based analysis puts the fraction of malicious pages at roughly 0.1%. The analysis described in our paper covers billions of URLs. Using targeted feature extraction and classification, we select a subset of URLs believed to be suspicious for in-depth investigation. So far, we have investigated about 12 million suspicious URLs and found about 1 million that engage in drive-by downloads. In most cases, the web sites that infect your system with malware are not intentionally doing so and are often unaware that their web servers have been compromised. Source: Introducing Google’s online security efforts

Here is a map of the globe highlighting the worst countries for drive-by downloads, of course most of the sites are in China, Russia, the US and Germany, they are highlighted in red. Orange means medium activity, yellow means low activity and green means no activity.

Location of malware distribution servers

Should be an interesting read, hope they really keep us up to date, and don’t just use it to react to stuff. Microsoft has released Microsoft Security Advisory (937696), Release of Microsoft Office Isolated Conversion Environment (MOICE) and File Block Functionality for Microsoft Office. Both features are designed to make it easier for customers to protect themselves from Office files that may contain malicious software, such as unsolicited Office files received from unknown or known sources. MOICE makes it easier by providing new security mitigation technologies designed to convert specific Microsoft Office files types, while File Block provides a mechanism that can control and block the opening of specific Microsoft Office file types. The Zero day blog says,

The tool, called MOICE (Microsoft Office Isolated Conversion Environment), can be used in tandem with Group Policy settings to convert documents in legacy (.doc) formats to OpenXML formats, stripping out potentially harmful elements that could pose a potential security risk.

The conversion process takes place in a safe, quarantined sandbox environment, so the user?s computer is fully protected. (See previous blog entry on the MOICE plans). Source: Microsoft releases Office exploit isolation tool

And in a related post, Zero Day describes the latest Monthly Intelligence Report from Messagelabs and says there is a surge in targeted malware against a known Word vulnerability and is suggesting an exploit generator kit may be circulating online.

These attacks increased dramatically since March 2007 from four attacks going to four single recipients to 66 attacks going to 273 recipients in April.

?On first sight, it appears that more than one hacker ring is using this Microsoft Word exploit, and so an exploit generator kit might exist, although this has not yet been found,? said Alex Shipp, senior anti-virus technologist at MessageLabs.

The report said a Taiwanese crime ring called ?Task Briefing? continued its use of Microsoft Office exploits during April, launching spear-phishing attacks with PowerPoint documents embedded in e-mails.

The ring made six attacks this month, sending 61 emails accounting for 10 percent of all targeted e-mails in April, the longest of which lasted 45 hours. In March, the same gang sent 151 emails accounting for more than 20 percent of targeted attacks.

During April 2007, MessageLabs said it intercepted 595 e-mails in 249 separate targeted attacks aimed at 192 different organizations. Of these, 180 were one-on-one targeted attacks aimed at a specific organization. Source: MS Word exploit generator circulating?

The security landscape sure is changing, and if you think you aren’t vulnerable as a person or an agency, your are severely mistaken. The report is available here.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - May 22, 2007 at 3:34 am

Categories: Google, Microsoft News, Office News, Security   Tags:

Tech News 5/18/2007

Lots of interesting technology news concerning Microsoft, Google, Torrents, Youtube and more.

The Pirate Bay to Launch YouTube Competitor The Pirate Bay is preparing to launch a Youtube competitor, they have confirmed it themselves, ?YES – we?re going to do a video streaming site. It?s true. It?s in the works being done right now and as usual we put a bit of Pirate Bay mentality behind every project we do.? Sounds like a version of Youtube where the copyrighted videos don’t come down, hehe.

Google Apps Partner Edition Today, we’re excited to take another step in that direction by releasing a version of Google Apps specifically designed for ISPs, portals, and other service providers, whether you have a few thousand subscribers or over a million. This new version, which we’re calling the Partner Edition, makes it easy for large and small service providers to offer your subscribers the latest versions of powerful tools, like Gmail, Google Calendar, and Google Docs & Spreadsheets, without having to worry about hosting, updating, or maintaining any of the services yourself. Sounds interesting.

Microsoft Launches Popfly: Mashup App Creator Built On Silverlight A mashup and widget creator using Microsoft’s new Silverlight. Mary Jo Foley calls it Microsoft Popfly: Yahoo Pipes for the rest of us, an app for the people who don’t want to program, just create.

Now that Feedburner Story?. Is Google going to buy Feedburner? Some say yes and the Doubleclick deal is holding it up, if they do, it would give them a foothold in the RSS ad’s market. Sure glad I’m not running any ads in my feed….

Microsoft Gets Its Ad Network Microsoft announced the purchase of aQuantive, a 10-year-old, publicly traded digital marketing company in an all cash deal worth approximately $6 billion — the biggest acquisition in Microsoft history. That is kind of hard to believe, as long as Microsoft has been around, but they do tend to buy the smaller companies I guess. Om Malik says “Microsoft?s willingness to pay big dollars and bid aggressively for aQuantive ($66 a share versus mid-$30s trading price) shows that the Barons of Redmond truly believe that advertising will play a big role in its future. How that eventually plays out – remains to be seen.” Michael Arrington has posted lots of info from the Media Call here, such as this question from Bear Stearns: does this affect MS?s opinion on Google/doubleclick transaction. MS: no, not at all. Says this will promote competition and Google/doubleclick will hurt competition. Microsoft is in none of the businesses that aQuantive is in, whereas Google was already in direct competition with doubleclick and will give Google 80% market share in those markets.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - May 18, 2007 at 6:54 pm

Categories: Microsoft News, Tech News, YouTube   Tags:

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