John Lister

Wed
12
May
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Windows Defender Bug Fills Hard Drive

A bug with Windows Defender has been filling computers with thousands of largely useless files. The bug is fixed with the latest update and this is definitely an application worth keeping updated. Windows Defender (officially known as Microsoft ... Defender Antivirus) is the built-in security tool in Windows 10. The consensus view is that it's not as good as the best third-party tools, but does a decent job and is certainly a useful line of defense for the average user. Unfortunately a recent update, which took Windows Defender to version 1.1.18100.5, introduced an annoying bug. Users noticed a ... (view more)

Tue
11
May
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Microsoft Ditches Windows 10X

Windows 10X, a variant designed originally for dual-screen machines, may never appear according to new reports. The system had also been tipped as an alternative to Google's Chrome OS. Microsoft officially announced it was working on Windows 10X in ... October 2019. At that time, the idea was to produce a separate Windows variant that was designed for dual-screen devices. Such devices, sometimes called clamshells, serve a variety of purposes. Some are designed to fold back completely so that users can switch between using it as a laptop and using it more like a tablet. Microsoft appeared to ... (view more)

Thu
06
May
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Google Criticized Over Misleading Gov't Ads

Google has been accused of failing to do enough to tackle rip-off ads. The issue involves advertisers who mislead customers into paying for government services that should be free of charge. The accusation comes from the BBC News site and involves a ... series of services such as applying for driving or travel permits. While the official costs vary from country to country, such services often have little or no cost from a government agency. Third party sellers run websites that are vague about their status and then charge users inflated fees to apply on their behalf. Such sites are often legal as ... (view more)

Wed
05
May
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Windows Update May Solve High CPU Usage Bug

Microsoft has released an optional Windows 10 update that could solve a recent problem with high CPU usage. Users who haven't had this problem can probably give the update a miss. The update, with the reference KB5001391 is optional as it's a "C ... release". That means it's made up of fixes and features that will roll out in the main update cycle later on but are available now as a preview. The main point of interest in KB5001391 is a fix for a memory problem. Microsoft hasn't made things entirely clear but it appears it's targeted at recent reports of users suddenly seeing their CPU usage ... (view more)

Tue
04
May
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EU Forces Web Hosts to Take Down Terror Content

Internet hosting providers will have just one hour to remove terrorist content after a government request under new European laws. It's raised fears some sites may get caught up potentially faulty content filters. The law is a European Union ... regulation that will take effect in Spring 2022. It will automatically apply in all European Union countries and will be based on where a website is hosted rather than where its operators are based. A press release announcing the regulation says it covers any content (both text and audio or video) that will "that incite, solicit or contribute to terrorist ... (view more)

Thu
29
Apr
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Facebook Slammed For Teen Ad Targeting

A campaign group claims Facebook lets users target ads at children based on interests such as smoking, drinking alcohol and gambling. Facebook says it has adequate measures to find and block such ads both before and after publication. The claims ... come from Reset Australia, which says it ran an experiment posing as the fictional "Ozzie News Network." It set up an advertising account on Facebook to see what options were available. In theory, Facebook has an outright ban on advertising adult topics such as alcohol to under 18s. Reset Australia says this failed in two ways: it was able to target ... (view more)

Wed
28
Apr
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Android Phones Hijacked For Ad Scam

Nearly 30 Android and Roku apps hijacked phones to defraud advertisers. Although users never saw the ads, they may have noticed increased data use and slowed performance. The scammers used the apps distributed in the official Google Play store to ... build up a network of almost a million compromised Android devices. The "PARETO" botnet then used the phones to issue bogus requests to advertisers while making the devices appear to be Smart TV sets. That was particularly appealing to advertisers because of the belief viewers are more likely to pay attention to an ad on a TV screen than on a phone. ... (view more)

Tue
27
Apr
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Apple, Facebook Fight Over Ad Tracking

Moves by Apple to restrict ad tracking have prompted a war of words with Facebook and a legal battle with advertisers. They both object to changes that require express permission for some tracking. The arguments are over the "identifier for ... advertisers" or IDFA. That's a specific code for each iPhone or iPad which can be used by advertisers to track activity by device users. Until now its been possible to use IDFA with express user consent and then combine it with other data to build up a picture of the individual for targeted advertising. The iOS 14.5 update to the iPhone and iPad operating ... (view more)

Thu
22
Apr
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Relief On Hand From Endless Video Meetings

Microsoft is to make it easier to build breaks into videoconferencing schedules. The move is designed to overcome a mismatch between technology "efficiency" and the real world. Automated scheduling tools make sense as a way for businesses to ... efficiently find and arrange times for people to get together. By default, most tools will schedule a meeting for a "round" time period such as 30 or 60 minutes. In an era when the vast majority of meetings were in person, that wasn't necessarily a problem. Back-to-back meetings were rare and even when they happened, meetings would naturally end a few ... (view more)

Wed
21
Apr
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FCC: Please Check Your Internet Speed

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has urged the public to use its Internet speed testing app. As with Netflix's tool, it's not just for the benefit of users. The FCC Speed Test App, which works for both WiFi and mobile data connections, ... has the usual simple "one-tap" functionality of such tools. By default is measures upload and download speeds plus latency. That's a measure of how quickly data transmission starts, which can be important for services such as online gaming. (Source: theverge.com ) Speed Maps Boosted Users can also switch on settings to measure jitter and packet loss ... (view more)

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