computer

Thu
30
Nov
John Lister's picture

'Spectacular' Apple Flaw Left Macs Wide Open for Attack

Apple has been forced to fix a major security flaw in the latest edition of the Mac operating system. The fix makes it far easier for a thief to access a computer's files. The bug is in MacOS High Sierra, which was released two months ago. It's ... widely used as its compatible with most Mac computers released in the past eight years or so. The problem is with root access on the system. That's the highest level of access, giving complete control of the computer and even the opportunity to alter key system files. Normally only the most confident users would enable root access (which then acts a ... (view more)

Fri
24
Nov
John Lister's picture

Windows Bugs Could Be Much More Serious

A key security feature in Windows doesn't work as planned. It's not a vulnerability in itself, but means that hackers who find bugs in software are much more likely to be able to do damage. The problem is with Address Space Layout Randomization ... (ASLR). It deals with the way a computer organizes different programs in memory. As an analogy, it's like organizing vehicles of different sizes and makes in a parking lot. Most operating systems support ASLR, which means that when a program starts up and needs to use the computer's memory, it's assigned a random location. In the analogy, think of cars ... (view more)

Thu
02
Nov
John Lister's picture

PC Beats Lawyers in Legal Prediction Contest

Computers can beat lawyers at predicting the outcome of cases according to a recent test. Organizers say an artificial intelligence program might even have uncovered insight into what influences case decisions. The test involved a computer program ... that has proven more sophisticated than intended. "Case Cruncher" was originally designed as a chatbot - a program that simulates a text conversation with a user - that would answer questions about the law. It was created and 'taught' by four law students in the UK. The team later developed it into a tool called Case Cruncher. Each variant ... (view more)

Fri
27
Oct
Dennis Faas's picture

How to Fix: 'Avast cannot be installed (directory not empty)' Error

Infopackets Reader Jerry C. writes: " Dear Dennis, I took your advice on antivirus and tried to install Avast! using minimal settings, but the install fails with an error message ' Avast cannot be installed into the folder you entered (directory not ... empty) '. I have searched for the answer to this but no one seems to know the answer. Can you help? " My response: I asked Jerry if he would like me to connect to his machine using my remote desktop service and he agreed. I have not seen this error message before, and tried running the "Avast Uninstall Utility" to clean up any left-over remnants ... (view more)

Mon
23
Oct
Dennis Faas's picture

How to Fix: Make Windows 10 Stop Flashing on Sound

Infopackets Reader Steve T. writes: " Dear Dennis, I am using a Windows 10 PC. This past weekend, my grandchild made some changes to my PC and now every time there is sound, the screen flashes. I have searched and searched how to fix this but I am ... cannot seem to find a solution. Can you tell me how I can make windows 10 stop flashing on sound? " My response: I have not heard of this issue before but suspected it may have something to do with the "Ease of Access" mechanism which has been built into Windows as far back as Windows XP. According to Microsoft, Ease of Access "helps make your PC ... (view more)

Wed
06
Sep
John Lister's picture

Court: Employer Right to Monitor Computer Use Has Limits

A European court says an employee shouldn't have been fired for sending private messages while at work. The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) overturned a lower court decision and said the employee's right to privacy had been violated. However, ... the court said the verdict was largely about the specifics of the case and that it didn't constitute an absolute ban on monitoring staff computer use, or create a right to private Internet access while at work. The case involves Bogan Mihai Barbalescu, a Romanian man fired in 2007 after using Yahoo Messenger at work to send personal and intimate ... (view more)

Fri
25
Aug
Dennis Faas's picture

How to Fix: No Sound - High Definition Audio Driver (Code 10)

Infopackets Reader William C. writes: " Dear Dennis, I'm have a problem with my sound after the latest Windows Update in Windows 10 (version 15063.540). If I use System Restore to roll back the sysetm (which then uninstalls the update), my sound ... works perfectly fine. In my Device Manager I have: a 'High Definition Audio Device' with yellow exclamation point warning, and two 'Realtek High Definition Audio Device' with no warning. I have uninstalled and reinstalled the Realtek audio drivers to no avail - the sound will simply not work! My system is connected to a TV via HDMI cable. If I use ... (view more)

Thu
24
Aug
John Lister's picture

Software Firm tells Parents to Spy on 'Gay' Sons

A company selling spy software encouraged parents to use its tools to discover if their son was gay. It's now removed the article in question. Fireworld offers software that tracks use of a computer. It's designed to be installed by anyone with ... physical access to the computer, who then wants to track what somebody else is doing with it. The software treads a thin line under French law, which makes it illegal to install spyware (software that spies) on somebody else's computer. Fireworld warns customers to make sure they are acting legally, and there's at least an argument that it's legitimate ... (view more)

Thu
27
Jul
John Lister's picture

New Windows 10 Changes Revealed

The next Windows 10 update will make shutting down or restarting a computer a smoother process. It will also make it slightly easier to switch back and forth between a phone and a computer. The changes are in the latest test build of the Windows 10 ... "Fall Creator's Update." That's the next twice-yearly update to Windows 10 that adds new features rather than simply fixing security and performance bugs. Normally in Windows, if you restart the computer (or it's automatically restarted by an update), you need to re-enter your login details. The same thing happens if you shut ... (view more)

Mon
17
Jul
Dennis Faas's picture

Explained: Most 'PC Support' Contracts Are Scams

Infopackets Reader Bob W. writes: " Dear Dennis, I believe that I have been scalped for a 3 year insurance policy and a 1 year extended warranty from Microsoft for the sum of $200.00. While going to Amazon's website, I received an alert that claimed ... that I was infected and that Microsoft was blocking my computer's further use and a phone number was shown to call. The listed URL was pointing to ' Secure Microsoft Support .' Based on that, I bit! 3.5 hours later and continued phone correspondence with 3 techs, my machine appeared to be functioning perfectly. The firm's name is ' LIVE PC EXPERTS ... (view more)

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