• Tasks for the weekend – Nov 20, 2021 – It’s the annual geek clean up

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    (Youtube here) This week’s Tasks for the weekend is brought to you by MuscularPortfolios.com.  Brian Livingston brings his tech mind to the Investing
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    Susan Bradley Patch Lady

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    • #2402681

      Gad. MS Nov. fighting with Kaspersky?! The outfit which finds and blocks bad stuff long before MS wakes up?! Have used KIS since 2014. Few issues and excellent phone support in the USA. MS better resolve conflicts ASAP or expect serious legal issues. IMO… 🙁

    • #2402717

      Hi, Susan. I note that your article references the Brave browser. I’m curious as to what you (and AW experts) think of this browser. My research indicates pros (security) and cons (ties to crypto currency sites and ad swapping). I’m a non-techie, but always interested in new things…as long as they don’t bite. Thanks!

      • #2402816

        KWGuy:  I don’t know what Susan’s take on this would be; but my “go-to” browser for more than a decade has been Firefox.  I’ve taken a brief look at Brave; but personally I’m not all that impressed by it.  One thing that especially turns me off of Brave is its “Private Ads” rewards, where the browser has some algorithm to monitor my “level of engagement” with the ads.  That’s something that I strongly object to.  And, of course, (as you already mentioned) a big concern is their connection to various crypto currency sites.

        In general, I use Firefox for almost all my daily web surfing, along with these three add-on extensions:  NoScript, Adblock Plus, and DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials.  That combination of Firefox and these add-ons works just about everywhere for me except for a very few websites (less than 5%) that occasionally have some issues.  And in those rare cases, my alternate browser is Chrome — which seems to be the gold standard for web developers.

        For a good comparison of features between Brave and Firefox, here are links to two reviews by TechRadar:

        One last comment I’d have is regarding Microsoft Edge.  Lately, Edge has been getting better in terms of new added features.  However, despite that, I would strongly discourage using it just based on its lack of privacy and user controls.  If you don’t mind sharing everything with Microsoft, it’s probably OK; but personally, I like to limit the amount of data Microsoft collects about me and my systems as much as possible.  So for me, Edge is a “no-go”.

        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2402934

          Thanks, Tom!  That’s exactly the assessment I needed.  You’ve reinforced my concerns…particularly re: the “ad engagement”.  I’ll stick with Chrome and Firefox.

          Happy holidays to you and yours!

        • #2403167

          I would be careful with Chrome. I only use it if I am not logging into a non-Google account.

          Chromium might be a better substitute for Chrome but it does not have an easy browser update process. Seems I need to download a new portable version to update Chromium. In the past month I have been trying out Ungoogle-Chromium and NoSync-Chromium.

          I prefer Firefox ESR however only with Mozilla Recommend Add-ons.

          • #2403506

            Additional comment: BleachBit seems to cleanup data from the Chromium, Chrome, Firefox, Edge and Internet Explorer browsers, just to ensure some privacy of your browser usage.

    • #2402727

      Make sure family members have backups and bootable rescue disks, and know how to use them.

      Make sure that family members have phone numbers of reliable, local computer repair shops.

      Carpe Diem {with backup and coffee}
      offline▸ Win10Pro 2004.19041.572 x64 i3-3220 RAM8GB HDD Firefox83.0b3 WindowsDefender
      offline▸ Acer TravelMate P215-52 RAM8GB Win11Pro 22H2.22621.1265 x64 i5-10210U SSD Firefox106.0 MicrosoftDefender
      online▸ Win11Pro 22H2.22621.1778 x64 i5-9400 RAM16GB HDD Firefox114.0b8 MicrosoftDefender
    • #2402728

      This Windows 11 ready screen remind me of the ‘red x’ upgrading Windows 7 to Windows 10.
      The ‘Stay on Windows 10 for now’ is pale blue-on-balck so people won’t notice it while ‘Download and install’ is highlighted.

    • #2402729

      My brother still runs Windows 7 on an old PC (with Blocked Windows 10 upgrade).
      When I visit him I first check that his browser (Chrome) is up-to-date.
      I then check that 0Patch Pro is running and updating.
      I go over his Gmail mail looking for spam, phishing…mail.
      I check that his free Kaspersky A/V is updated…

      2 users thanked author for this post.
    • #2402743

      When visiting some (not all) family members I sometimes am asked to look into issues with their computer or home network.

      For the computers, I always start off doing what most here have already mentioned: check backups are being done, make sure AV & anti-malware is working & updating, check logs, looking for persistent errors, etc.  I added “BIOS check” to this checklist after visiting a relative a last year.

      During that visit I discovered they had a fairly new but virtually unused high end custom workstation (from a local mom&pop computer shop) that they bought for their CAD work.  I asked about it and they said it would always crash after a few minutes of any kind of use, so they just didn’t use it.  The vendor had apparently been of no real help & the relative was just too embarrassed to pursue the issue any further.

      I looked over the system & confirmed the issues  – but none of my typical checks uncovered an obvious cause.  I spent hours on this and then – as an afterthought – I checked the BIOS.

      OMG!  The vendor had set one of those lame auto-overclock options… which I quickly confirmed had mis-configured memory and made the memory very unstable.  Disabling the auto-overclock & setting proper explicit parameters for CPU, power and memory resulted in a stable awesome system.

      So now when I debug a relative’s (or friend’s) computer/laptop I always look over the BIOS settings first.

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2402747

      I did not know where Chrome – Notifications where located: Settings -> Privacy and security -> Site Settings -> Notifications.


      The notifications are there because of Google Extensions so in Settings -> Extensions, I removed them all. Back in Notifications, I set Default behavior to Don’t allow sites to send notification. I did not see how you remove the Google notifications.

      Firefox 91 ESR Notifications: Settings -> Privacy & Security -> Notification (under Permissions) -> Settings

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