6/27/2006

MS released a new version of Windows Genuine Advantage

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Microsoft released a new version of Windows Genuine Advantage Notifications on Tuesday and detailed how to remove the controversial antipiracy software.

The updated WGA Notifications package includes changes that respond to criticism Microsoft has faced over the software, the company said. It no longer checks in with Microsoft after each restart, for example.

Removing alert tool

For the first time, though, Microsoft is offering guidelines on how to remove WGA Notifications. Previously, it had said the software could not be uninstalled, leading others to develop numerous cracks and homegrown patches to counter the tool.

WGA Notifications still can’t be removed using the Windows “Add or Remove Programs” feature. Installing the new version will automatically remove the older version of the software.

But for those who don’t want the new release, Microsoft now provides step-by-step removal instructions for the old version in a support article on its Web site. It said those instructions will also work to uninstall the updated release of the antipiracy tool, but it said it doesn’t sanction that use–if you try to remove the latest version and mess up, you’re on your own.

Source: News.com

Apple updates Mac OS to squash bugs

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Apple Computer on Tuesday released an update for its Mac OS X that repairs several security flaws and includes feature updates.

The update, Mac OS X 10.4.7, fixes four security vulnerabilities, Symantec said in an alert sent to customers. “These issues can be exploited to cause denial-of-service conditions, gain access to sensitive information, and execute code,” it said.

Aside from the security fixes, Mac OS X 10.4.7 delivers some improvements and repairs a few issues related to Mail, Finder and iChat, among other things.

Source: News.com

Police hold three in spam Trojan bust

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Police in Finland and the UK this morning arrested three alleged members of a group dubbed “MOOP” suspected of delivering trojans via spam emails to gain access to confidential information stored on “thousands” of corporate machines, the Metropolitan Police’s Computer Crime Unit has confirmed.

The three men, a 63-year-old from England, a 19-year-old from Finland and a 28-year-old from Scotland, are being questioned after computers were “seized at residential addresses in both countries in addition to the suspects’ servers”.

Source: TheRegister

Microsoft To Enforce VLK Compliance For Vista

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Enterprise customers can forget about the honor system Microsoft has in place for reporting Windows licenses they consume.

Starting with the release of Vista and “Longhorn” Windows server next year, customers will be required to register their volume license keys (VLK) with Microsoft within 30 days of acquisition and report their license usage on a monthly basis, executives said.

Source: CRN

Child porn convictions to be reported to banks

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Police will be able to pass details of child pornography offenders on to banks so that offenders’ credit cards can be revoked.

The UK Home Secretary has issued an order for the amendment of the Data Protection Act which will be read in both houses of Parliament.

The order was requested by credit card issuers and is the result of three years of negotiation between the industry and the Home Office, according to a spokeswoman for issuers’ organisation APACS, the UK payments association.

Source: TheRegister

Microsoft Erases Hopes Of Xbox 360 Price Drop

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Most people expected Microsoft to follow up their one-year lead on PlayStation 3 with a fall-timed price drop. When Sony announced an unexpectedly high price point, though, the strategy seems to have changed (if everyone’s speculation was right, anyway).

Source: extremetech

Is Microsoft about to release a Windows “kill switch”?

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

WGA might be on the verge of getting even messier. In fact, one report claims WGA is about to become a Windows 鈥渒ill switch鈥?.

in the fall, having the latest WGA will become mandatory and if its not installed, Windows will give a 30 day warning and when the 30 days is up and WGA isn’t installed, Windows will stop working.”

When asked Microsoft for an on-the-record response, they refused to deny it.

Source: ZDNet

Toshiba open to re-opening HD DVD/Blu-ray merger talks

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Toshiba has once again said it’s open to the development of a single, unified next-generation optical disc format to end the battle between the HD DVD format it backs and the Sony-led Blu-ray Disc camp.

“We have not given up on a unified format. We would like to seek ways for unifying the standards if opportunities arise,” Toshiba president Atsutoshi Nishida said during the company’s annual shareholders’ meeting this week, Reuters news agency reports.

Source: TheRegister

MS Killed WinFS Because It Wasn’t Ready For End Users

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Quentin Clark, WinFS product unit manager for SQL Server, said in a blog that many end-user features of the much-anticipated WinFS file system for Windows weren’t ready and that the project has been shelved once again.

“Is WinFS dead? Yes and no. Yes, we are not going to ship WinFS as a separate, monolithic software component,” Clark said in his latest blog, published Monday evening in response to the outcry that followed his first blog post. “But the answer is also no. The vision [of WinFS] remains alive, and we are moving the technology forward. But some of the technology, especially the end-user value points, are not ready. And we’re going to continue to work on that in incubation.”

Source: InformationWeek

Basic Computer Classes Near Extinction

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Because today’s students are already so tech-savvy, educators are using computers to teach other subjects instead of needing to teach basic computer literacy.

Teachers are using computers more to teach core curriculum and less to teach computers, according to a recent survey.

Source: InformationWeek

Sony Adds Flash to Its Smallest Vaio

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Sony will replace hard disks with flash memory when it launches a new model of its Vaio U laptop next week, it said today.

The computer will be one of the first on the market that uses flash memory in place of magnetic storage.

The Vaio UX90 will come with 16GB of flash memory storage in place of the 30GB hard drive on the original model. It will cost around $1805, or about $345 more expensive than the disk-based model, and go on sale in Japan on July 3.

Source: PCWorld

Third of Search Engine Results For Diet Pills Lead To Scam

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

McAfee, Inc., using McAfee SiteAdvisor has identified 75 diet-related Web sites that engage in misleading advertising, deceptive billing practices, or both. While diet scams have long been around, their prevalence may be growing based on the ubiquity of the Internet: McAfee SiteAdvisor has found that as many as one- third of search engine results for keywords like “hoodia pills” lead to misleading sites.

McAfee SiteAdvisor researchers found that many diet sites engage in misleading “bait-and-switch” billing practices, where a user is promised a free sample but then finds that he or she has been automatically subscribed to an expensive monthly service. In addition to billing practices, McAfee’s ratings of these sites also take into account criteria developed by the Federal Trade Commission on exaggerated product claims and results . Through the course of its analysis, McAfee gave the 75 sites a “yellow” or cautionary rating.

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