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Archive for July, 2007

HijackThis is now Spyware?

Merijn, the creator of HijackThis™ recently sold the popular application used to remove malware to Trend Micro™. In addition to improvements like support for Windows Vista™, they’ve added a deceptively titled “AnalyzeThis” button. While the average user likely thinks the AnalyzeThis button provides helpful information for diagnosing their log, it’s main purpose is to send the HJT log data to Trend Micro. Unfortunately, unless you carefully read the Trend Micro End User License Agreement, you would probably never know that the AnalyzeThis button submits the data from your HijackThis log to Trend Micro for use by them and their partners… (read more)

HijackThis is now Spyware? [TomCoyote]

Do you need a Quad-core CPU?

Intel Quad CoreUnless you’re a hardware enthusiast, you may have missed the fact that Intel significantly lowered the price on it’s quad-core CPUs this weekend. A quad-core CPU has four processing units on one chip (this first quad-core from Intel is actually two dual-core CPUs on the same chip). With the price drop, a quad-core CPU can now be purchased for just a little more than a high-end dual-core. Four CPUs for the price of two. Sounds like a good deal, right?

Well, not so fast. Unlike clock speed increases, multiple cores don’t scale linearly. While a 2ghz CPU is twice as fast as the same CPU at 1ghz, a quad-core CPU is not four times as fast as a single core. Like most desktop technology, quad-core CPUs have migrated from the server market. Comparing server performance using round numbers, a dual-core CPU offers about a 50% performance over a single core (not 100%), and there are diminishing returns. A quad-core CPU is only about 25% faster that a dual-core CPU.

Read the rest of this entry »

Thanks a million!

communityCongratulations wannabe1 for making the 1,000,000 (one millionth) forum post! I honestly never thought this little hobby site I started would ever grow so large. Thanks to the hundreds of staff members, and the hundreds of thousands of members that have made it possible. You deserve all the credit. Here’s to the next million! :D

View the forums [Geeks to Go Forums]

IT after hours: Tech pros donate time to help the computer-clueless

IT workersAll week long, these IT professionals are under constant pressure at work, troubleshooting downed networks, fixing dead hardware, patching security holes and updating buggy software.

So what do they do for fun and relaxation after work? They head home and spend hours doing the same thing — for free — by volunteering on tech support Web sites to help home and business users solve perplexing computer problems.

On sites like Protonic.com, Techguy.org, BleepingComputer.com and GeeksToGo.com, anguished computer users post messages seeking answers to problems with hardware and software from volunteers — many of whom are self-taught home computer users. But the group also includes IT pros who work in the corporate trenches every day and then give away their expertise at night and on weekends.

They say they gain far more from the effort than what they put in.

IT after hours [ComputerWorld]

SunRocket dead?

SunRocketVoice over IP service involves using the Internet to route your land line phone call instead of traditional telephone companies. It was once touted as the future of telecommunications, however clouds are on the horizon. Vonage has legal problems resulting from a patent dispute that if successful is likely to affect all VoIP providers. SunRocket apparently faces other challenges. They were the darling of many “hot deal” forums by offering two years of service for $199, including unlimited US long distance, and many other features. However, as of today calling their 800 customer service line (800) 786-0132 yields the following:

We are no longer taking customer service or sales calls… goodbye

SunRocket purportedly had 200,000 customers. As of this time they still have phone service, but odds are that may not last long (including 911 service).

VoIP companies have been hit hard by cable companies offering ‘bundled services’ and stealing market share. This is sure to hang another cloud over the industry.

Xbox 360 warranty extended to 3 years, including previous repairs

Xbox 360

The Xbox 360 has come under criticism for its high hardware failure rate. Microsoft has said its around the industry average of 3-5%. However, other unconfirmed sources have put the figure closer to to 30%. Microsoft does acknowledge the consoles had a higher failure rate when first launched.

No matter who’s numbers you accept, you have to give kudos to Microsoft for taking a billion dollar hit to make things right. Effective July 5th, all Xbox 360 warranties have been extended to 3 years. Including repairs already made!

In late 2006, Microsoft extended the warranty of all Xbox 360 consoles to one year, up from 90-days. For gamers who were out of warranty, a replacement or repair would cost about $140.