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Online Computer Tips Monthly Newsletter - November 2012

 Posted: October 19, 2012 -

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Latest Virus/Security Alerts:

FBI spoofing virus\scam making its rounds

There are reports of a virus going around that supposedly locks up your computer and tells you that it is because the FBI has found child pornography on your computer and then instructs you that you need to pay to unlock it. The warning message demands $200 to be paid to Moneypak which will get you a code to unlock your computer. It's also possible that the virus is recording keystrokes on your computer.

The FBI has stated that they are not performing any tactics like the one described and has nothing to do with the computers locking up. Sometimes you can just reboot your computer and get past the message but you will most likely need to do some virus scanning and other troubleshooting to get the infection off of your computer.


Virus Help
Spyware Help

November's Poll:

Do you think Windows 8 will be a hit or a flop?
Click Here to Go to This Month's Poll

October's Poll Results: 
Would you rather have a laptop or a tablet if you could only have one?

Laptop - 100%
Tablet - 0%

Tip of the Month:

Windows 8 Upgrade Assistant

With the release of Windows 8 last month, many of you may be thinking about upgrading to the newest version of Microsoft's operating system. But before doing so it's always a good idea to make sure your computer and run the new version of Windows before you do your upgrade. Otherwise you risk having incompatible hardware or software that you can't use or may be stuck doing a reinstall of your old version of Windows.

To check your computer's current software configuration for Windows 8 compatibility simply download and run the Windows 8 Upgrade Assistant and follow the prompts. After it runs its scan which will take a few minutes, it will show you the results. Then you can click on See compatibility results to find out what programs won't work with Windows 8 or will have to be reinstalled if you do an upgrade.

Windows 8 Upgrade Assistant

The list will be broken down into a section that you need to review and a section of known compatible software. You can use this list to see if you will need to upgrade your software or find another program to perform the job that any incompatible software does.

Windows 8 Upgrade Assistant

After checking the list you will have the option to be shown what version of Windows 8 is best on you based on your configuration. The Windows 8 Upgrade Assistant can be downloaded from Microsoft's website.

All Tips
Hot Product of the Month: SteelSeries Siberia V2 Navi Full-Size Gaming Headset


If you are an online gamer and want to be able to communicate effectively with your teammates then you need the right gear to do so. The SteelSeries Siberia V2 Navi Gaming Headset allows you to do just that. They feature passive noise reduction via leather padded cushions built from sound dampening foam. The V2 Nava also has 50mm drivers which provide exceptional audio experience at high, low and mid tones, and offers clear reproduction of everything from mood-setting music to 3D positional alerts.


  • Closed ear headphones with 50mm driver units
  • Pull-out microphone
  • Lightweight suspension construction
  • Crystal clear high, low and mid-tones
  • Integrated volume control located on the cord
  • 50mm driver units



Important Windows and Office patches:

Windows 8 and Internet Explorer 9 patches highlight November's Patch Tuesday

There were 19 vulnerabilites addressed this month in Microsoft's monthly Patch Tuesday release including Internet Explorer and Windows patches. There were 6 bulletins released of which 4 were rated as critical. Internet Explorer (MS12-071) and Windows (MS12-075) were the most urgent. MS12-075 affects all versions of Windows.

The Internet Explorer patch fixes 3 security flaws in IE 9 and doesn't affect other versions of the web browser. The patch was created to fix an issue with drive by download attacks on users running IE 9.

The Windows fix addresses 3 remote code execution vulnerabilities in Windows kernel-mode drivers and even affects the new Windows 8 operating system. If you are running an unpatched Windows system you could be compromised by visiting a malicious page using specially crafted TrueType font files.

Other patches released this month affect .NET, Windows shell and Microsoft Excel.


More Resources

Interesting site of the Month:

Do you have a lot of photos that you want to edit but don't have the expensive software needed to get the job done? If so then check out where you can edit your photos online and do things like adjust the color, exposure and rotation as well as crop and resize the images.


Reader's Question of the Month:

How to change the Word 2010 style format

Cindy writes in with an Office question
Question:I have a newer computer and it has Word 2010 on it and its hard enough getting used to the new toolbar but one thing I can't stand is how it does double spacing every time I press enter to go to t a new line. Is there a way I can get it back to my old way of using a single space like my old version of Word did?

Answer: What you can do is change the style to Word 2003 which used a single space when you pressed enter and then make it the default. To do so find the Change Style button on the Home tab and use the drop down and choose Set Style and change it to Word 2003. Then click on the dropdown and again choose Set as Default. This should make it so it will use the Word 2003 formatting style for your documents. I have seen it where it doesn't always stick and you may need to do it again occasionally.

All Questions

Tech News of the Month:

Windows 8 may be just as vulnerable to malware as Windows 7

You would think that with each new version of an operating system that it would be more stable and secure than the last, especially these days with all the spyware, viruses and cyber crime around every corner. Windows 8 has just recently been released and Microsoft has made claims that there are new features in the new OS that would make it more secure than previous versions of Windows.

Antivirus firm BitDefender did some tests of their own to see if these claims were true and determined that Windows 8 was just as vulnerable to common malware attacks as Windows 7 which won't sit well with people planning on upgrading to the new version. BitDefender tested 385 of the most common malware variants on 2 computers running Windows 8 but only one of the computers was running Windows Defender. 61 different malware infections made it through to the computer running Windows Defender and even more made it through to the computer that was not running it as you would expect. Of the 385 samples, 234 ran successfully and some were able to get backdoor access to the system and steal credentials and keystrokes.


Go to The OCT News Blog

Wallpaper of the Month:

Stuff your face with these Thanksgiving wallpapers

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