Using Minitools Partition Wizard To Extend The System Reserve Partition

April 21, 2017

… and, SEE MORE GREAT GEEK SQUEAKS’ BELOW

Ran into an issue when I went to upgrade my Minix NEO Z83-4  mini PC to the Windows 10 Creators Edition. The update would not install and I kept getting Windows error code (0xc1900200) when using the  Windows Update Assistant. I ended up researching the issue and found that the “System Reserve Partition” (64MB) was too small. I decided at this point to wait until the update made its’ rollout to my computer (to see what would happen) and when that day did come, the update started to install but soon failed. After concluding I needed to find a way to expand the system reserve partition, I went to the MiniTools Partition Wizard (free edition). What I ended up doing with this partition tool, to make the System Reserve Partition larger in size, had me sweating bullets. I backed up my computer, just in case this did not work out as intended.

MiniTool Partition Manager

In a nutshell, I used the Minitool Partition Wizard to delete an unidentified 16MB partition on the drive (which I had to do in order for this to work), then took 250 MB from drive C:.  I then took the 64MB System partition and added the 16MB space from the partition I had deleted and added the 250MB that I removed from Drive C:, giving me a total of approximately 330MB for the System Reserve Partition. At this point, I crossed my fingers (and toes) and rebooted.  The PC rebooted with no errors or problems detected.

Since the Creators Update had attempted to install previously I went into the Windows Update Settings, clicked on “Check For Updates” and the Windows 10 Creator’s Update started the installation process (which is a time consuming process with numerous reboots). I probably could have used the Windows Update Assistant tool to download and install the update, as well… In the end,  I was able sucessfully to install the Windows 10 Creators Update.

Hopefully, as a result of expanding the System Reserve Partition, using MiniTools Partition Wizard, I will not have to worry about doing this again when future major updates occur.


MORE GREAT GEEK SQUEAKS’

Multiple security holes discovered in Linksys routers – 

The flaws could allow attackers to:

  • Cause a Denial of Service (DoS) by sending requests to an unamed API. Admins would be locked out until the attack stopped.
  • Use CGI web server scripts to reveal connected devices and computers, dump the WPS Wi-Fi PIN code, and list firmware version and configuration settings.
  • Create a hidden “backdoor” account with root privileges and the ability to run commands.

Source: Naked Security

Ingenious Ways to Repurpose Your Old Tech – Check out this article at PC Mag that provided ingenius ways to repurpose your old tech… READ MORE

Ingenious Ways to Repurpose Your Old Tech

Kaspersky System Checker 1.1.0.228 – Kaspersky System Checker is a handy system diagnostics utility that allows you to check your PC system for different kinds of issues. The software then provides a detailed report about possible threats, hardware problems, and system-related issues… READ MORE

Microsoft To-Do: the end of Wunderlist – Microsoft launched a preview of To-Do, a new cross-platform task management service the other day that is “designed to make it easy to plan and manage your day”… READ MORE

microsoft to-do

 #1 Hot New Release – Samsung Chromebook Plus Convertible Touch Laptop… READ MORE

How to create a single-column Start menu in the Windows 10 Creators Update – To do this, open the Settings app and go to Personalization > Start. Scroll down past the preview to the list of on/off sliders. Turn off the one that’s labeled Show app list in Start menu. Don’t worry, you’ll still be able to get to your app list… READ MORE

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Microsoft Patches MS-Word Exploit That Spreads Malware

April 12, 2017

On the same day Microsoft officially began rolling out the Creators Update for Windows 10, they were also rolling out a patch for a zero-day exploit (that spreads malware) for all current Microsoft Office versions used on every Windows operating system (including the latest Office 2016 running on Windows 10). If you are running Microsoft Office at home, make sure you have installed the patch. To learn more, click on the source link below…

All versions of Office on all versions of Windows are vulnerable to this zero-day that spreads malware, so make sure you patch quickly

Source: Microsoft patches Word zero-day booby-trap exploit – Naked Security


Was Informed That A New Version Of Malwarebytes Has Been Released

April 4, 2017

In discussion with a computer geek friend of mine he indicated that Malwarebytes has a new version out (v3.0). I further confirmed this and learned that a new version was released on and about March 20, 2017. Based on what I am reading on their blog (for this release) — CLICK HERE — the excitement over this release is that it is being touted as a next generation anti-virus replacement and will be called only Malwarebytes.

Once you download and install you will be entitled to a 14 day free trial. If you desire to revert to the FREE edition now and turn “off” the free trial, simply click on the “settings” (at the left side) and then click on “my accounts”, then turn off the trial under “subscription details”. If you decide to stick with the free edition, you will need to periodically perform the scans manually.

Malwarebytes is one of the first things I install on a new computer and is my “go to” tool when helping others eradicate malware and other exploits…

This product is built to provide comprehensive protection against today’s threat landscape so that you can finally replace your traditional antivirus.

Our engineers have spent the last year building this product from the ground up and have combined our Anti-Malware, Anti-Exploit, Anti-Ransomware, Website Protection, and Remediation technologies all into a single product which we simply call “Malwarebytes.” And it scans your computer 4 times faster!

mb3

With the combination of our Anti-Malware ($24.95), Anti-Exploit ($24.95) and Anti-Ransomware (free, beta) technologies, we will be selling Malwarebytes 3.0 at $39.99 per computer per year, 20% less than our previous products combined and 33% less than an average traditional antivirus. But don’t worry, if you are an existing customer with an active subscription or a lifetime license to Malwarebytes Anti-Malware, you will keep your existing price and get a free upgrade to Malwarebytes 3.0. If you have both an Anti-Malware and an Anti-Exploit subscription, we will upgrade you to a single subscription to Malwarebytes 3.0, reduce your subscription price and add more licenses to your subscription.

Source: Malwarebytes


RECOMMENDED – Get On The Email List Of The US CERT / US Homeland Security’s Latest Cybersecurity Threat Updates

March 28, 2017

AKBearfood a visitor to the blog (from Alaska) recommended; “Get On The Email List Of The US CERT / US Homeland Security’s Latest Threat Update & Info E-Mails”. You can CLICK HERE to setup your email subscription.

Based on AKBearfood’s email name and additional employment information that was provided, it appears he (or she) deals with two potential threats that could impact his (or her) well being: 1) – Becoming food for bears; and,  2) Cyber Security Threats…

U.S. Department of Homeland Security Seal. United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team US-CERT

AKBearfood provided the following example of the importance of being on the email list:

As an example, the E-Mail link to their website yesterday covered: Apple Releases Security Update for iWork | US-CERT – found at the following URL: https://www.us-cert.gov/ncas/current-activity/2017/03/27/Apple-Releases-Security-Update-iWork

The e-mail subscription to the Homeland Security Website is free, and for my work group, helps us keep up with the latest threats and fixes recommended by the USA’s Cyber Security folks – at least the threat info that they release to the public without any “hacking” assistance.

The National Cyber Awareness System is America’s first cohesive national cybersecurity system for identifying, analyzing, and prioritizing emerging vulnerabilities and threats. Managed by the US-CERT, the system relays computer security update and warning information to all users. It provides all citizens—from computer security professionals to home computer users with basic skills—with free, timely, actionable information to better secure their computer systems. The National Cyber Awareness System provides valuable cybersecurity information in the form of Alerts, Tips, and Bulletins.

To take this one step further, I have subscribed to the US-Certs National Cyber Awareness System RSS feed and have posted the feed under the blog’s TECH NEWS (see tab at top of blog).  The very first thing you will see in the feeds I have posted is the most recent alerts and documents as distributed by US-Cert / U.S. Homeland Security

A big THANK YOU to AKBearfood…


Top 10 Best Sellers – Antivirus and Security Software

March 17, 2017

Antivirus software, now often referred to as security (suite) software, due to the innumerable threats, come in a variety of different brands. To get an idea, check out the top ten sellers at Amazon (see source links below).

I personally use a FREE antivirus program called Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition; however, you may feel more comfortable using one of the paid commercial versions such as reflected below.

Antivirus software was originally developed to detect and remove computer viruses, hence the name. However, with the proliferation of other kinds of malware, antivirus software started to provide protection from other computer threats. In particular, modern antivirus software can protect from: malicious browser helper objects (BHOs), browser hijackers, ransomware, keyloggers, backdoors, rootkits, trojan horses, worms, malicious LSPs, dialers, fraudtools, adware and spyware.[2] Some products also include protection from other computer threats, such as infected and malicious URLs, spam, scam and phishing attacks, online identity (privacy), online banking attacks, social engineering techniques, advanced persistent threat (APT) and botnet DDoS attacks. [source: Wikipedia]

#1: Norton Security Deluxe 5 Device PC/Mac

#2: McAfee 2017 Total Protection – 5 Devices [Online Code]

#3: Norton Security Premium – 10 Devices [Download Code]

#4: Norton Security Deluxe – 3 Devices [Download Code]

#5: Kaspersky Internet Security 2017 | 1 Device | 1 Year | Download [Online Code]

#6: Norton Security Standard – 1 Device [Download Code]

#7: Norton Security Deluxe – 5 Devices [Key Card]

#8: McAfee 2017 Total Protection-5 Devices [Key Code]

#9: Webroot Internet Security Complete 2017 | 5 Devices | 1 Year | PC [Download]

#10: Webroot Antivirus 2017 | 3 Devices | 1 Year | PC [Download]


A TIP To Protect Privacy (When sending email to multiple recipients, use “Bcc”.)

March 13, 2017

The article reflected below I have posted several times since its’ original posting (back in 2010). What prompted me to dust this off and bring it back out of the archives is that today I received a local government generated email to advise recipients of other government agencies of an impending snowstorm.  What caught my attention was that as this email was sent to a very large body of people.  I was able to see every name and email address to folks I am guessing would not want their email address and name made that public. As this email get’s forwarded, more and more email addresses will be revealed. To protect the privacy of others, it is best practice to use “Bcc” when sending email to multiple recipients.

Bcc = Blind Carbon Copy

Did you know that if you use the Bcc field in your email client to address and send an email or want to send a copy of an email to multiple users, the recipients will not see whom you sent the email to?

Many know this trick; however, I still find that many do not. When using the Bcc field to send your emails, the people receiving the email will not know who the other recipients are. It is not a trick of hidden magic. It is that the addresses of the other recipients are simply not shared.

I often receive forwarded chain emails; usually consisting of jokes, humorous movies, prayer requests, etc… Occasionally I will find one these emails humorous or important enough that I will pass it on; HOWEVER, prior to doing this I perform some housecleaning steps.

I will remove any “FWD” text (usually in the subject line) and will remove any email addresses I find in the body of the email that reflects the email addresses of recipients who have already received the email. After performing these housecleaning steps, I will enter into the the Bcc field, in my email client, the recipient’s email addresses, from my address book, to send (or forward) the email. If the email client requires at least one entry in the “To” field, I simply enter my own email address.

The benefits of using the Bcc field is simply this. You are protecting the privacy of other people. Currently I have approximately (5)-five email accounts that I use for specific purposes, from a variety of email services, with one of those accounts being my primary email account. I am very protective of that primary email account address and do not want it thrown about for the spammers to get hold of or for strangers to see. For example, I have found people’s email addresses in forwarded emails that I know and have not seen for years. They are very surprised when I contact them; and, will often ask, “How did you get my email?”. I explain that I simply pulled it from a forwarded email.

Be courteous to others and learn to use the Bcc field in your email; AND, when possible avoid chain emails all together.


Did you know that Google knows almost everything that you do on their services?

March 11, 2017

You need to see this article that Phandroid has posted (see source link below) that will show you what Google knows about you, how this information is collected, where you can find this information and how you can opt out. Google collects this information, as a form of profiling, in order to better improve their products and services.

You may have already opted out of this collection of information; but, my guess is, you did not.

Did you know that Google knows almost everything that you do on their services? Find out what they know and how you can do something about it.

Source: Here is everything Google knows about you