About Me

Saturday, 11 April 2009


You may of heard of a virus doing the rounds at the moment called Conficker, this is a worm that embeds itself into a host computer awaiting instructions from a number of other infected machines on the internet, as of yet the purpose of the virus is unclear, but the most likely is that it will, once activated, record and then send data i.e, online bank details, to the designers of the virus.

there is one way to check if you have become infected, thanks to some helpful people at www.confickerworkinggroup.org, who have developed a handy test website to determine the possibility of infection.


If you believe that you are infected you can download a removal tool from here
once you have removed the worm ensure that you perform a windows update to download the windows hotfix that plugs the holes that allow the virus in.

Wednesday, 4 February 2009

Winxpantivirus 08/09, Malware

There is a nasty bit of Malware knocking around on the net at the moment called winxpantivirus, this program pretends to be an official microsoft product, most common symptoms include, multiple pop ups telling you you have a virus and need to download a program to remove it, slowing down of windows and network disruption, it can also take the form of a java update, once the malware is on your system its a right bugger to remove.

There are a couple of programs that will remove it, but they do need to be run in safe mode which i have already explined how to get into in earlier posts, these programs, which are freely available are, Malwarebytes and smitfraud fix.

Once these programs have been run and you are running XP then run winsockfix, or on vista, go to start, type run in the search bar press enter and then type this in the little box that pops up.
netsh ip reset
this is to reset your tcpip setting that are messed with by the malware.

Tuesday, 4 March 2008

Backup in Vista

If you have the Business, Home Premium, or Ultimate edition of Vista, Microsoft has included one of the most critical programs you can find on any computer, one that backs up your data. Backup Status and Configuration—located off the Start menu, in Accessories > System Tools—is incredibly straightforward, with options to back up or restore individual files, groups of files, or even your whole PC. You can also set up an automated backup system, back up immediately, or change settings. The process is so simple, in fact, that setting it up should be one of the very first things you do—if a catastrophe happens, you'll be incredibly glad you did.

Sunday, 10 February 2008

Can't turn off the computer?

Again another quick tip that is completely obvious to alot, but unknown by a few. If your PC freezes and you can't shut it down by any normal means, then instead of yanking the plug out or pulling the battery out of the laptop or even leaving it on till the battery runs out, which countless customers have done , do this,
hold down the on switch for 8-10 seconds the PC/laptop will turn off.
Its not the recommended way to turn off a PC but its better than some alternatives i've heard.

Internet on the move.

I get a lot of questions related to using the internet whilst on the move, mainly due to fact that i live in a tourist area, many holiday makers are keen to check e-mails or there ebay account while away from home.
There are a few methods available, some are free and some will require a monthly contract, so firstly the free method, Macdonalds, every Macs has a free internet portal for use by its patrons, basically take your wireless enabled device, laptop or pda into Macdonalds order a coffee take a seat and browse at the same time, i wouldn't recommend sitting in your car in the carpack due to there huge parking charges/fines.
Second method, if you have a bluetooth enabled mobile phone and internet browsing is included on your mobile contract, you can connect to the internet using your mobile phone as the modem, the software supplied with the phone normally allows you to setup the connection, the only purchase you may need to make is a usb bluetooth adaptor for your laptop, also check the charges and restrictions for browsing with your mobile contract provider before hand, you don't want any nasty suprises come bill day.
Thirdly, this method is the easiest and gives you the most freedom, and once again its provided by the mobile phone providers i.e. 3, orange, o2 and the like, its a usb dongle that holds a sim card, the dongle is installed into the laptop and act as the modem, connecting to available networks it will provide near broadband speeds depending on the coverage in that area, basically you can connect to the internet anywhere you can recieve a mobile phone signal. Charges do differ depending on the different offers available, some will be monthly contracts limiting download amounts depending on monthly cost, and some like 3 are pay as you go, where you top up a predetermined amount when you need it.
more info for each is provided here.

Thursday, 7 February 2008

Network Problems?

Another great little tool that i use on a regular basis is called Winsockfix xp, after removing certain spy/adware or changing a firewall or even switching from dial-up to broadband, your TCPIP stack can become corrupt, which means that no matter what you try you cannot connect to a network ie. broadband router, this tool will automatically reset all your tcpip settings and will normally re-enable connectivity, it can be downloaded from here.
So if you've been on the phone to your isp (internet service provider i.e. AOL, Tesco, Orange) for the last 3 hours and swapped the router twice then give this tool a go, you may be pleasantly supprised.

Wednesday, 6 February 2008

Nanny Vista!

The one thing that annoys me the most about Vista as a technician is the UAC, User Account Control, this is responsible for the annoying box that pops up everytime you try to do something on the PC, asking if your sure you want to do it! Its little known that this program can also stop older software/games from auto running and give the impression that they do not work with Vista when this is not the case, luckily it can be turned off and here's how,
click the start button
click control panel
double click User accounts
click turn user account control on/off
untick the selection to turn UAC on
click ok
and the PC will restart.
No more annoying nanny control.