Ozzy's PC Tips

I created this page to help answer PC related questions, problems or malfunctions. Over the years I have come across and have learned many tricks regarding PC maintenance and troubleshooting. If you have a certain PC related question email me with a description of your problem and I will see what can be done to correct the problem. My email is ozmail@comcast.net

Depending on what operating system (Windows XP) you are running I might be able to log in and remotely take over your pc to fix the problem. I am only offering this to WSGS members (and I know who you are). My disclaimer, I don't do AOL or Apple so don't ask because I can't help you with that weird stuff.

First off some of my random email tips:

1. NEVER open emails that you do not know the sender. This is how spyware or viruses get on your computer. If you can't remember who has your email address, get a pad of paper and start a list. Everyone that is not on your list, press the delete button on your keyboard.

Never, ever reply to a spam message. This includes buying a product that is for sale or clicking the often-misunderstood "unsubscribe" link, which actually informs your spammer that you exist. If you can tell from the subject line that a message is spam, don't open it — delete it. Spam subject lines usually promise you a better sex life, a more youthful appearance, prescription drugs without a doctor's approval, love, thicker hair, or a better mortgage rate. They also use attention-demanding punctuation, such as exclamation marks or all caps. This is when you press the delete button on your keyboard.

3.  Don't click any links in a spam email. Spammers often have multiple, unique pages on their sites. Often, when you click a URL in a spam message, this tells the spammer that you - and only you - received the message he or she sent. This verifies that your email address is active and current.
4.  Don't forward an email from someone you don't know to a list of people. You remember those "forward this email to 20 of your friends" messages? They are perfect for spammers to harvest email addresses, even if the sender of the original email did not have this intent. These types of sign-and-forward emails often appear in the form of a petition - and they don't work.
5. Don't use your home or business email address. when you register on a Web site or in a group. If you must sign up for services, want to receive more info, register for newspapers or domains; use a free email address from a site like Yahoo or Hotmail to create an address especially for that purpose. This also goes for posting to the Web, in a listserv, newsgroup, on a contact page for a Web site, or on a resume that is posted on the Web.
6. Trust. For all of you that think everyone can be trusted you have put on blinders to the real world. There are groups of people out there that have nothing better to do than try to extract your information, gain your trust, are trying to sell you something and trying ruin your computer. If you don't wake up and attempt to be somewhat computer savvy then they are the winners and your PC is screwed.
7. Forwarding emails. When forwarding emails please learn how to strip the email so all the other recipients are not in the body of the email. Also use BCC instead of To: or CC:. The BCC prevents email addresses from being seen when forwarding emails, which prevents spammers from collecting good email addresses. Watch the U-Tube video I made explaining how to do this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RNFJ_ulggoI&layer_token=7158807f80f19e3

If you want to use an email signature in your email:

For everyone using Outlook go to:
          Mail Format
                            then add this (copy and paste below)
Mu Chapter
Washington State Gourd Society

Home of the 2010 "Northwest Gourd Festival"

If your using another email program go to the help menu to find out how to insert email signatures.

This tip is called "Bad Eyes"

Are you straining to read text on the internet? There is a way to make the text bigger and this works on most webpage's. This only works if you have a mouse that has a scroll wheel on the top. Go to any webpage, place your cursor anywhere on the page, press and hold the CTRL key on your keyboard and roll the wheel on your mouse. The text should grow or shrink depending on which way you roll the wheel.

Keyboard Short Cuts

These are keyboard commands that initiate certain actions on your computer. Most of these commands require pushing multiple keys at the same time. That is what the - (dash) means.

ctrl-alt-delete (press all 3 at the same time) this brings up the Windows task manager, if one of your programs locks up or quits responding, click the applications tab, highlight the program that's not responding and select End Task. Warning don't play with the other tabs unless you know what your doing.

ctrl-A    put your cursor on a webpage or a document press ctrl-A and everything will be selected. Then press ctrl-C to copy.

ctrl-D    highlight text in a document and ctrl-D will delete it. you can also use the delete key

ctrl-C    highlight something to copy (like a paragraph on the internet)

ctrl-V    paste what you have copied (paste what you copied into a word document, or an email)

ctrl-P    opens printer que

ctrl-O   opens a file

ctrl-F    This opens a find box so you can search for keywords on an internet page

ctrl-F5   This will clear your internet browser cache (are your pages loading slowly?)

alt-tab  Switches between open programs

Recommendations For a New Computer

I have been asked if I can recommend what to look for when buying a new computer. Follow this link to read an article on what to look for when buying a new PC. http://www.wagourdsociety.org/newpc.htm

Internet and Online definitions of key words

Hackers, black hats, cyber-criminals, identity thieves, and spam kings -- these are some of the Bad Guys in the online world. And because of them, we've had to invent a whole new vocabulary to describe the dastardly deeds they do. Here are plain English definitions of twenty words you should know that deal with the darker side of the Internet...

Plausible Denial of Terms of Service
Maybe that's mixing too many metaphors, but it sounded more fun than "Hackers Dictionary" or "Dark Deeds Defined". Anyway, when we discuss the issues surrounding all the bad stuff that bad guys do online, and the good stuff that the good guys do to keep things running smoothly, we run into a bunch of jargon. And even if you're just an ordinary user, you should be familiar with all these terms and their definitions. At the very least, you'll sound smarter at your next social gathering.

1.  Adware - A piece of software that displays advertisements on a computer after the software is installed. Adware can be benign, as in the case of a free program that displays ads in a manner that is agreed upon in advance. Or adware can be a nuisance, displaying unwanted ads with no apparent way to remove the program. The nuisance variety is often silently downloaded along with some other desired software, such as a game or toolbar.

2.  Arbitrary Code Execution - When a security vulnerability is discovered in a piece of software, sometimes it is said that it allows for "arbitrary code" to be executed on the machine. This really means that the vulnerability can be used to cause that program to execute ANY set of commands or instructions on that computer.

3.  Black Hat - A "bad guy" or hacker who breaks into computer networks, creates viruses, sends spam, or uses unethical tactics to influence search engine results.

4.  Ethical Hacker - A "good hacker" who uses a variety of techniques to test the safety of a computer network or system software. Typically an ethical hacker (also known as a "White Hat") is hired by a company to see if there are any flaws in their systems that might allow Black Hats to gain entry.

5.  Botnet - A collection of ordinary home and office computers that have been compromised by rogue software. The term "botnet" is short for "robot network" and describes the situation rather well. Computers that have been caught up in a botnet have been effectively taken over, and can be used to perform almost any task by the person or persons who control the botnet. Botnets are controlled by criminals and other miscreants whose motives include spewing spam to sell products, operating financial scams and crippling websites through coordinated attacks. (See "Denial of Service Attack")

6.  Buffer Overrun - This is a flaw in a computer program that occurs when the length of a user input is not validated. For example, if a program is expecting a 9-digit social security number as input, it should discard any input beyond the 9th character. If the program blindly accepts a longer input string, it could "overrun" the input buffer, thereby trashing some other part of the currently running program with the extraneous characters. In some cases, this flaw can be used to overwrite the existing program with code that comes from the input string. (See "Arbitrary Code Execution")

7.  Denial of Service Attack - A concerted effort by one or more remote attackers which attempts to flood a web server or network with meaningless requests. A sustained, coordinated attack can render the target unable to service the legitimate users attempting to connect.

8.  Exploit - A method of taking advantage of a bug or security hole in a computer program. It's possible that a hole may be known to exist, but no exploit has yet been created to capitalize on it.

9.  Malware - Any form of malicious software. This can include computer viruses, spyware, worms, trojan horses, rootkits and other software that is deliberately harmful, destructive, or invasive.

10. Patch - A fix for a software bug or security hole. When a bug is discovered, often there is a race by software vendors to provide a patch before an Exploit is created. Patches must be applied to the affected computers in order to prevent exploitation of the flaw.

11. Phishing - The act of stealing information using lies or deception as bait. Online scammers try to trick people into voluntarily providing passwords, account numbers and other personal information by pretending to be someone they trust. An example of phishing is an email that appears to be from a bank, asking recipients to login to a rogue site that looks exactly like the real one. When the victim logs in, the operators of the fake site then have that person's login credentials and can access their bank account.

12. Rootkit - A rootkit is a software tool (or a set of programs) designed to conceal files, data or active processes from the operating system. Because of their ability to hide deep in the operating system, rootkits are hard to detect and remove. Although rootkits may not cause damage when installed, they are often piggy-backed with additional code written for the purpose of taking control of a computer, disabling certain functions, or spying on the user and reporting activities back to the rootkit creator.

13. Scareware - Software that is created for the purpose of tricking people into downloading or purchasing it, when in reality it's either unnecessary, marginally useful, or outright dangerous. Online ads that display fake warnings such as "Your computer may be infected -- click here to scan for viruses" or "ERROR! Registry Damage Detected -- click to download Registry Cleaner" would qualify as scareware. Scareware programs often run a fake or cursory scan, then present the user with a list of hazards that must be corrected. Fixing these "problems" then requires the user to pay a fee for a "full" or "registered" version of the software.

14. Skimming - The act of stealing credit or debit card information while a legitimate transaction is taking place at an ATM machine. Skimming involves an unauthorized device that is attached to the card slot of the ATM, which reads the magnetic strip as the card passes through. A hidden camera may also be used to capture the victim's PIN number.

15. Spyware - Spyware is a type of malicious software designed to take action on a computer without the informed consent of the user. Spyware may surreptitiously monitor the user, reporting personal information to a remote site, or subvert the computer's operation for the benefit of a third party. Some spyware tracks what types of websites a user visits and send this information to an advertisement agency. Others may launch annoying popup advertisements. More malicious versions try to intercept passwords or credit card numbers.

16. Trojan Horse - A Trojan horse is a malicious program that is disguised as or embedded within other software. The term is derived from the classical myth of the Trojan Horse. Such a program may look useful or interesting, but is actually harmful when executed. Examples may include web browser toolbars, games and file sharing programs. A Trojan horse cannot operate or spread on it's own, so it replies on a social engineering approach (tricking the user into taking some action) rather than flaws in a computer's security.

17. Virus - A computer virus is a malicious self-replicating computer program that spreads by inserting copies of itself into other programs or documents, similar to the way a real virus operates. When the infected program or document is opened, the destructive action (payload) is repeated, resulting in the infection, destruction or deletion of other files. Sometimes the infected programs continue to function normally, albeit with the side effects of the virus; in other cases the original program is crippled or destroyed.

18. Worm - A worm is a malicious computer program that is self-contained and does not need help from another program to propagate itself. They can spread by trying to infect other files on a local network, or by exploiting the host computer's email transmission capabilities to send copies of themselves to everyone found in the email address book. Some even look in the cache of recently visited web pages and extract other email addresses to target.

19. Zero-Day Exploit - An attack that tries to exploit unpatched security vulnerabilities. The term "zero day" derives from the fact that software vendors sometimes have a window of time to fix a problem before an exploit is developed, or before news of a vulnerability is made public. But when the exploit already exists before a patch is released, the vendors have "zero days" to fix it because users are already exposed.

20. Zombie - A computer that has been compromised, and can be controlled over a network to do the bidding of a criminal or miscreant. Computers that have been caught up in a Botnet are zombies, and can be used by the controller of the Botnet to send spam or participate in a coordinated denial of service attack.

This provided by askbobrankin.com

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