DoctorLaptop’s Tips #60 18APR17

DoctorLaptop’s Tips #60 18APR17
-Unless you are still running Windows XP or Vista (shame on you, both are obsolete) don’t worry about the recent news headlines regarding Windows hacks being released. Windows7/8/10 users who keep their Windows Updates current are not at risk.
-Windows 7 users are no longer in danger of receiving an unwanted upgrade to Windows 10. Turn auto-updates back on if you have not already done so, as announced in an earlier edition of my “Tips”. If auto-updates has been off for a while expect a large number of new updates, so be patient. After setting Windows Updates to “automatically check for and install updates”, click on Check Now For Updates and leave it running all night. Connect power cable before starting this, never update on battery power. You can now also remove the GWX Control Panel program for blocking Windows 10 updates if you installed it. GWX does not need to be “uninstalled” like other programs, simply delete the .exe program file and restart your computer.
-MacBook 2016 owners, your Apple warranty says that it will not cover any “damage caused by service (including upgrades and expansions!) performed by anyone who is not a representative of Apple or an Apple Authorized Service Provider.” Apple can use this to deny you warranty repair coverage after 3rd party repairs, resulting in Genius Bar repair charges of hundreds of euros. It’s a shame to find it on the new Macbooks, as previous Apple laptops allowed users to do some light modifications without completely
voiding your warranty. Details at:
-My 5th Anniversary Clean&TuneUp Special expires on May 1st. Do it now to avoid problems the coming summer heat can cause.
Happy Computing, Naythan
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19Dec15 – DoctorLaptop’s News and Tips

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Microsoft’s latest Windows 10 nag screen: Upgrade now, or upgrade tonight

By Adrian Kingsley-Hughes for Hardware 2.0 , with [edits by DoctorLaptop in brackets]

Microsoft is at it again with the Windows 10 upgrade nag screens, with the latest one giving users of Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 the option to “upgrade now” or “upgrade tonight.”

I like Windows 10 and I think users should seriously consider taking advantage of the free upgrade while it’s on offer, [but only if they are absolutely sure their computer is Win 10 capable and all drivers are available, check the manufacturer’s website for info regarding their model’s Win 10 status and also do some research on Google regarding other user’s attempts to upgrade that model]. But what I don’t like is the aggressive (or at the very least, overzealous) way that Microsoft is pushing the upgrade to users.

InfoWorld has a screenshot of the latest upgrade prompt being presented to users.



To the average user it looks like they only have two options available: Upgrade now, or tonight. However, the more tech savvy users would probably assume they could use the “X” in the top-right of the box to dismiss it without making a choice, and they would be right. In fact, this is advice that Microsoft offers Windows users on its Safety and Security Center portal.

This is the latest in a series of Windows 10 upgrade nags that Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 customers have been subjected to. This is the sort of nag screen I’d expect from a shady website or sketchy adware installer , not an operating system, and it makes me uncomfortable to see Microsoft going down this road.

If Microsoft were to add a “not now” and a “no thanks” option to this prompt then I’d be fine with it, but in its current format it has clearly been designed to push users into upgrading by not offering them a clear way to opt out. It’s an older-than-dirt sales trick (known as The Assumed Sale), that makes out that the deal is done, and all you have left to do is choose the color of the car you’ve bought.

I’m at a loss to explain why it’s being used. Is it a company being overenthusiastic about its new product? Is it the marketing people being given too much say in how the upgrade is being pushed? Or is it desperation arising from the fear that bold targets set before Windows 10 was released won’t be met

Users who want to get rid of the Windows 10 upgrade nag screens can use the third-party utility GWX Control Panel to block these prompts. [You will need to check the GWX settings after all Win 10 updates as some will reset all your Security Settings!]

How to switch from PC/Windows to a Mac as painlessly as possible

Planning to make the switch from a Windows PC to Mac over the holidays? Here’s what you need to know.

-Before making the move

-Windows apps won’t run on a Mac

-Moving your data across from your PC to the Mac

-Accessories and non-Windows style connectors

-Learn a few keyboard shortcuts and new keys

-Right-clicking on a Mac

-How to CTRL + ALT + DEL on Mac

-Running Windows on your new Mac

-Backing up your data (frequently) on Mac, manditory on Macs as many repairs require an OS re-install!

Read the full article here:

How bad sellers on eBay (and elsewhere) get great reviews!

You can buy great reviews online! For $5, people will review (in any way you want) a product/book/etc. See it here:

Changes to UK copyright law will soon mean that you may need to take out a license to photograph classic designer objects even if you own them.

That’s the result of the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act 2013, which extends the copyright of artistic objects like designer chairs from 25 years after they were first marketed to 70 years after the creator’s death. In most cases, that will be well over a hundred years after the object was designed. During that period, taking a photo of the item will often require a license from the copyright owner regardless of who owns the particular object in question.

Read more here:

Windows 10 Trends and Tips

If you are using a 3rd party backup program on Win 7 or 8, be sure to keep a backup copy of that program’s installer. Some of these backup programs have updated to new versions THAT CANNOT READ THE OLD VERSION’S BACKUP FILES!!! When it comes time to move data from those old backups to a new system you can install the old backup program you saved (in Win 10 you may need to use Compatibility Mode to do this) to allow the transfer of the old backups as a new version of the backup program may be unable to do this.

-I am seeing a lot of comments on the techie blogs that persons who have done the Windows 10 Upgrade have found their old data deleted! It is supposed to automatically be copied onto the System Drive (usually the C: drive) in a folder named windows.old. Yet this sometimes fails. So be sure to have complete backups of your data onto an external memory device before doing the upgrade.

-Some Win 7 & 8 users are claiming they awoke to find the Windows 10 Upgrade installed on it’s own, even after users had declined or delayed the offer. Other users claim this happened to them despite having installed special programs to prevent the Win 10 Upgrade. What’s worse is that many of these computers now converted to Win 10 had either failed to fully complete the process and became unbootable, or were missing drivers for essential functions like USB, wifi and Bluetooth. Even worse is if the video driver fails, that essentially bricks the unit forcing you to manually re-install the old operating system.

-If you have Win 10 installed and change any security settings,or use a 3rd party program like GWX to control all the security settings in one window, be aware that any new Win 10 updates you do may reset the security settings to their default despite the program you installed. You will need to open that program and restore all the settings to the way you wanted them.

Beware when buying memory cards and USB flash drives on-line.

On-line stores, and especially E-Bay sellers, have been reported for selling counterfeit memory cards and drives. These will be labeled as major brands (Toshiba, Kingston, etc.), in large sizes, 32 to 128Gb; in reality you get 2 Gb.

Happy Holidays To All, and remember, I will be working thru the holidays, available to do setups, installs or otherwise solve your tech issues!

Reminder, my Clean and Tuneup any computer for 30euros Special runs thru the end of December. Does not apply to heavily infected units, those with hardware problems or showing error messages.

Feliz Navidad









DoctorLaptop’s Tips and News – 25July15

Note: I now have wifi again and can check my email in a timely manner.

In the wake of a critical Remote Code Execution vulnerability in all versions of Windows, Microsoft has just issued an emergency fix.

Yes, it’s time to patch your Windows operating system against an alarming security hole that could allow remote attackers to run malicious code on your computer, thereby taking “complete control of the affected system.” Since Microsoft has conveniently failed to name the specific update needed, you are expected to “fully update” your Windows to get the patch.
Apple Mac OS X Vulnerability Allow Attacker to Hack your Computer
A security researcher has discovered a critical vulnerability in the latest version of Apple’s OS X Yosemite that could allow anyone to obtain unrestricted root user privileges with the help of code that fits in a tweet.
The privilege-escalation vulnerability initially reported on Tuesday by German researcher Stefan Esser, could be exploited to circumvent security protections and gain full control of Mac computers.
The most worrying part is that this critical vulnerability is yet to be fixed by Apple in the latest release of its operating system.
BEWARE: this next quote is in Geek-speak

This is dangerous,” Esser explained in a blog post, “because it allows hackers to open or create arbitrary files owned by the root user anywhere in the file system. Furthermore, the opened log file is never closed and, therefore, its file descriptor is leaked into processes spawned by SUID binaries. This means child processes of SUID root processes can write to arbitrary files owned by the root user anywhere in the filesystem.”

Basic translation: If exploited, this allows an attacker to easily gain privilege escalation in Yosemite to hijack your Mac computer and take control of your system.

How to Delete an Un-deletable File or Folder
In the case of a folder you may need to open the folder and manually delete all the contained files one at a time. If that goes ok then go back to the now empty folder and delete should work. If this fails, or you can not delete the files in the folder there are several geeky ways to remove the folder/files. I will spare you the details because there are tools to do this for you.
With IObitUnlocker, a free program, you wouldn’t be annoyed any more by messages like “Cannot delete file”, “Access is denied”, “undeleted files”, “The file is in use by another program or user”, or “There has been a sharing violation!” This is a powerful tool designed to fix such kind of problems, by terminating all related processes that prevent you from deleting or accessing files / folders that you need to remove.  It is an easy-to-use tool, which helps you delete the files or folders by dragging and dropping or just clicking the add button to select your objective files / folders. Get it from the official IOBIT site here: