A reader on the forum asked yesterday why his password kept expiring on his Windows Vista installation, so here’s the answer for everybody: Windows XP Professional, Windows Vista Business and Windows Vista Ultimate all have a built-in feature to allow user accounts to have a password expiration.
If you use the built-in file encryption in Windows 7 or Vista, you might be interested in adding an option to the right-click menu to more easily encrypt and decrypt your files, rather than having to use the file properties dialog.
If you’ve got drives in My Computer that you never access, such as a USB Flash drive that you are using solely for ReadyBoost, a floppy drive, or a network drive only used for a particular piece of software, then you might want to simply hide the drive from your computer.
Many people have reported problems with synchronizing their clocks with the internet time servers, especially time.windows.com, which seems to have a ton of problems with uptime. We’ll go through a few workarounds to fix this issue.
Windows Vista’s AutoPlay options are a great improvement over Windows XP in terms of flexibility, but unfortunately there are so many options that it can be confusing, especially since there’s no specific mention of USB Flash drives in the options.
Microsoft Word is a wonderful tool for writing documents, but did you know that you can now use it to post to your blog as well? This is tremendously useful if you tend to write very long, wordy posts, or if you just can’t spell worth anything.
This week I had the opportunity to check out Microsoft’s System Center Essentials (SEC) 2007. I thought I would share this with all of our IT geek’s out there.
I have just started to play around with Access 2007 and so far my thoughts are indifferent. I am not sure how well the “Ribbon” is going to play out. I work in Access Databases a lot with my job and I am pretty comfortable with the way things have been. I have gotten used to the Ribbon in Word, Excel, and Outlook. In fact it seems to make those tasks more fun. I have been really holding off on Access though.
If you allow Firefox to store your passwords you might be worried about the recent security holes found in the password manager. The solution to these problems is to use the Secure Login extension to prevent Firefox from automatically filling in password fields, but at the same time giving you the automation that saves you time. In fact, using the hotkey means that this method is probably even quicker.
The new Parental Controls in Windows Vista will allow you to filter the content your children can view on the web. You could, for instance, block your kids from using MySpace or other similar sites. Before you set this up, you should make sure your child has a non-administrator account so they can’t immediately reverse the changes.
So you’ve got MySQL on your web server, but it’s only opened to local ports by default for security reasons. If you want to access your database from a client tool like the MySQL Query Browser, normally you’d have to open up access from your local IP address… but that’s not nearly as secure.
If you’ve been using the default movie player in Ubuntu to play videos, you might have noticed that there’s no way in the application to clear the recent history of watched movies. This could cause issues if you happened to open a video that you don’t want other people to see in your list.
Whenever you enter user credentials into Internet Explorer, map a drive to a remote server, or connect to a Windows domain, you are given the opportunity to save your password. What you may not realize is that you can backup or restore the list of those credentials using a mostly hidden control panel utility.
If you share a computer you know how important it is to keep your personal data and surfing habits private. You could always use the Private Browsing feature, but what if you forget? You can clear your session data by using the Reset feature in Safari.
Many utilities need to be run as administrator in order to function properly, especially older utilities that haven’t been updated to support Windows 7 or Vista yet.
If you would like better communication with your co-workers here is a quick tip on sharing your calendar in Outlook. This will only work if you are using an Exchange Server e-mail account, typically something you’d be using in a corporate environment.
Windows Vista includes a file encryption technology very similar from a user perspective to the one that existed in Windows XP, but Vista makes it very easy to make a backup of the file encryption key. In XP, your encrypted files would be lost if you changed your password. In Vista, an encryption key is used to sign the encrypted files, which also means it can be backed up.
If you can’t stand the User Account Control prompts, but you’d still like to retain a little bit of security, you can disable it for Administrator accounts only. What we’ll be doing is actually changing Windows Vista to automatically elevate the privilege level for administrators without prompting.
If you decide to turn off automatic updates, you’ll be annoyed to death with popup messages from the Security Center that tell you to “Check your computer security” or “Check your Firewall status” if you disabled the firewall. It’s a good thing you can turn those messages off.
Did you know that Windows supports using passwords of up to 127 characters? I don’t use passwords anymore, and I haven’t for years. I’ve switched to using password phrases instead.
If you hate logging in every time you reboot your computer, you can easily configure Suse to automatically log you in when you start your computer. Or you can disable it if you are worried about security.
In older versions of Windows, you had to use the Ctrl+Alt+Delete combination to login to the system. This was supposed to provide a higher security login, although I don’t know how. You also might be used to using that combination to login, and there’s a way to turn it back on.
If you are just running a home computer for gaming or something unimportant, you might not want to have to log in every single time you reboot your computer. There’s an easy tweak that will let you autologin.
In Windows 7 or Vista, the screen goes dark when the User Account Control window comes up, which is extremely annoying. They call it the “Secure Desktop”, but I think it’s obnoxious.
This article covers installing subversion with the apache module so that it can be easily accessed from other systems on a public network. If you want a more secure svn server, you could use svnserve+ssh, which isn’t covered in this article.