Dennis Faas

Tue
15
Oct
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What is the Difference Between a Gui and a Skin?

Infopackets Reader Lim Chee A. writes: " Greetings from Malaysia! I have been subscribed to your Infopackets Newsletter since May 2002, and I really enjoy your work! I have a question though: What's the difference between GUI and skins? " My ... Response: GUI is a short-term word which means "Graphic User Interface". A skin is an extension of the GUI which changes the GUI appearance. If you're interested in changing the way that Windows looks, you might be interested in checking out these web sites: http://www.shellcity.net/ http://www.stardock.net/ http://www.wincustomize.com ... (view more)

Tue
15
Oct
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Windows Security Threat -- NTFS Alternate Data Streams, Part 2

This issue of the Gazette is dedicated to "tying up a few loose knots" from our ongoing discussions about Hackers and Security threats . First, I'll give you all an update to Gazette issue dated October 10, 2002 (Windows Security Threat -- NTFS ... Alternate Data Streams ). To recap: an anonymous reader (John Doe) sent in an email that discussed a potential security risk in Windows which might allow a hacker to take a screen capture of a computer with the NTFS file system installed. I realize that this article was a bit on the "technical side", but I did my best to clear up ... (view more)

Thu
10
Oct
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How can I stop the annoying voice on my Asus motherboard?, Part 2

Yesterday's Visitor Feedback posed the question, "How can I stop the annoying voice on my Asus motherboard during the boot up process?" The answer to this question has been solved: the annoying voice that plagues Michael H. is actually a feature in ... the BIOS which can either be disabled completely, or customized with a different voice. I didn't receive any feedback on how to customize the voice, so I'll just tell you how to disable the darn thing. As Alan H. writes: " The feature that Michael is referring to is the Asus Post Reporter. It is a feature of the Asus P4B motherboard (and on other ... (view more)

Thu
10
Oct
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Windows Security Threat -- NTFS Alternate Data Streams

Since we're on the hot topic of hackers and hacking lately, I thought I'd share with you another great resource that Eric B. sent me. The web site is called myNetWatchman . The myNetWatchman program (agent) gives users a heads-up that they have a ... security problem, if their system becomes infected with an Internet Worm virus. There's also some super-cool reading on their web site (RE: ' Windows Forensics ') which shows how multiple non-hostile applications combined can lead to a hacking threat. I'm not going into great detail because I don't want to spoil it for you; however, I will say that ... (view more)

Wed
09
Oct
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How Can I Stop the Annoying Voice on My Asus Motherboard?

Infopackets Reader Michael H., writes: " Dear Dennis, Firstly, let me thank you for your great newsletters. They are a wealth of information! I have Windows XP installed on system which consists of an Asus P4B (Pentium 4 capable motherboard). My ... problem is that whenever Windows XP begins to load, I hear a voice that says, 'System completed power-on self test; computer now booting from Operating System.' Can you please tell me how to remove this annoying feature?! I have to shut off my speakers every time I boot my computer to avoid hearing this annoying voice? " My Response: I can't ... (view more)

Wed
09
Oct
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Can I track down a hacker?, Part 2

Yesterday's Visitor Feedback asked, " Can I track down a hacker ?" My answer to that question was a passive one -- mainly based on the fact it would take an inconceivable amount of time to prosecute each and every hacker who tries to wallow his way ... into your computer system. An algorithm for a typical Hacker might look something like this: Randomly select a computer to hack; Attempt to gain access to randomly selected computer; If access is granted, deliver a payload (send virus/trojan, delete files); If access is not granted, disconnect from this computer; Repeat process. With the ... (view more)

Tue
08
Oct
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Can I track down a hacker?

Infopackets Reader Merle A. writes: " Dear Dennis, I want to know if there is a way to find out who is trying to hack into your computer. I have the "remote address, local address, and remote computer address." Someone tried twice, but my Norton ... Antivirus stopped them (this time). " My Response: Trying to hunt down a hacker may prove to be fruitless, especially if: There is more than one 'hacker' attack The hacker spoofs his IP address Chances are that most hackers will do everything possible to cover his/her tracks in an effort to thwart "being caught". Even *if ... (view more)

Tue
08
Oct
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How to clean a mouse to ensure proper operation, Part 2

I received a few emails regarding last week's Visitor Feedback suggestion on " How to clean a mouse to ensure proper operation &quot ;. A few of you suggested not using a screwdriver / knife to chisel the dirt off the wheels of computer mouse. ... When I wrote the Visitor Feedback for that particular day, I envisioned my old "ball" mouse which came with steel wheels. I completely forgot about those old ball mice with plastic wheels -- in which case, my suggestion for using a knife or flathead screwdriver may potentially damage the wheel -- although, I think you would have to chisel ... (view more)

Thu
03
Oct
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How to clean a mouse to ensure proper operation

Infopackets Reader Pat O. write s: " Dear Dennis, Could please you explain why my mouse has become resistant to my direction, and maybe advise of a remedy? It is particularly hard to handle when required to click on specifics like buttons and tabs ... when it then feels strongly like it is being pushed aside. Any ideas? " Similarly, Rick D. asked: " My pointer/mouse, is locking and jumping all over the screen. I was told to lower the acceleration, so I did. It still kept doing it. I am out of ideas, so any suggestions that you can give would be more than appreciated. " My ... (view more)

Thu
03
Oct
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How to print page numbers

Since we've been on the topic of Printers lately , I thought I'd share with you another useful tip. It's another visitor feedback question from Arlene M. She writes: " Dear Dennis, My printer used to number the pages, but does not any longer. I miss ... that. Do you have a way to bring that function back? " My response: The option for Page Numbering is * usually * in the Printing Preferences. Printing preferences are available for a printer by clicking Start -> Settings -> Control Panel -> Printer. Printing preferences are also (usually) displayed at the time of printing a ... (view more)

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