Battles With Boredom

July 21, 2006

How to Use Email, Part 1: Subject lines

Filed under: Techspeak — Peter Nikolaidis @ 4:23 pm

I’ve decided to publish some notes that I’ve been accumulating for a long time on the do’s and don’ts of email. Since it may get a bit long, I’ve decided that I’ll put them out here one at a time, and it will consist of at least five parts. (That way I can be lazy and not have to think up new topics for a while!)

So here’s the first thing that you can do to make yourself a more effective emailer: Always use the subject line. (more…)

July 5, 2006

Norton Internet Security is Garbage

Filed under: Techspeak — Peter Nikolaidis @ 10:33 am

I highly recommend that anyone who purchased Norton Internet Security or a computer that came with it preinstalled, uninstall it immediately and get something else. The firewall that comes with NIS is completely brain-dead, and to date EVERY computer that we have worked on which has NIS installed has had issues where the firewall keeps the user from doing anything network-related.

The idea behind a software firewall is that it keeps the bad guys out of your computer. The problem is that Norton Internet Security seems to take this a step further by keeping you from getting on the Internet or even your local area network! I suppose that the truly draconian network administrator could argue that this is more secure, but the far cheaper and simpler method would be to simply disconnect your Ethernet card from the network.

If you need a firewall, Windows XP comes with one built in, for free, and it works well. There are also plenty of other firewall, anti-virus, and spyware prevention products out there. I’ll list a few for your reference:

Firewalls:

Windows XP’s Built In Firewall – Microsoft – Free

Kerio - Sunbelt Software – $20

ZoneAlarm – Zone Labs – $50

Anti Virus:

Norton Antivirus – Symantec – $40 (yes, this product is okay)

AVG - Grisoft – $39

AVGFree - Grisoft – Free to NON-business users for ONE computer only.

Anti Spyware:

Windows Defender – Microsoft – Free

Spybot Search and Destroy – Free
AdAware Personal – Lavasoft – Free for personal use

SpySweeper – Webroot – $30/year

Alternately, just buy a Mac.

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