Why Your Home Wi-Fi Is Lousy

If you think your home Wi-Fi is annoying now—flaky, slow, riddled with dead zones—just wait until your streaming 4K TVs are battling phones, laptops, game systems and connected gadgets for the available bandwidth. The future depends on your home network, but even today’s best home networks aren’t ready.

I call this problem the home-spectrum crunch, and it’s a relatively new phenomenon. It’s a product of a 100-fold increase in demand for wireless bandwidth on home Wi-Fi networks in just the past five or so years.

In place of Web browsing on one or two devices—requiring less than 5 megabits per second—we now have streaming video and multiple Internet-connected devices consuming more than 100 megabits per second. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development in 2013 estimated that the average household with two teenagers had 10 Internet-connected devices. By 2017, the OECD projected the number would be 17; by 2022, it would climb to 50.

To grasp the problem, think of each Wi-Fi router as a stereo system. When there were fewer Wi-Fi hot spots and fewer gadgets connecting to them, the ambient noise was bearable. But if you’ve opened your laptop and lately seen dozens of Wi-Fi networks, you understand our modern conundrum: All those networks are essentially trying to shout over one another to be “heard” by connected devices.

Trond Wuellner, product manager for Google’s OnHub Wi-Fi router, says the average OnHub router can “hear” 16 other hot spots; one of every 20 OnHubs can hear 50 other hot spots.

The upshot: the more Wi-Fi hot spots, the worse the overall Wi-Fi experience for everyone. This is the reverse of what should be and the opposite of what happens in an office, where all the Wi-Fi hot spots are made to play nice with each other by expensive equipment from the likes of Cisco Systems.

Having a good home Wi-Fi network has become something of an arms race: Buy a newer, more powerful router and your service could improve, but at the expense of your neighbors.

The fact that nearly everyone who makes Wi-Fi routers is trying to tackle this problem, along with Google, your cable company and a raft of startups, demonstrates how in-home Wi-Fi connections have become a serious bottleneck.

One such player is Eero. Wall Street Journal personal-tech columnist Geoff Fowler found that Eero’s multi-node “mesh networking” solution works well even in challenging environments.

But a stock Eero setup might not be adequate in a future when homes routinely have gigabit connections, a 10-fold increase over what’s widely available today. That’s because, as Eero CEO Nick Weaver explains, when you’re at the edge of a mesh network, your connection is only as fast as the slowest link back to the base station.

One solution would be to add more antennas, or nodes, throughout your home. Unfortunately, Eero’s units currently cost $200 a pop.

A new competitor announcing itself on Monday, called Plume, has gathered wireless-industry veterans to create what it claims is a new kind of Wi-Fi, protected by 14 patents. The company calls it “adaptive Wi-Fi.”

Fahri Diner, CEO of Plume and a veteran executive of Siemens and Qtera, says Plume’s system will consist of many cheap, “dumb” antennas, enough for every room of a house, for a total cost of about $100.

If Plume can do that, it would be enough to make a wireless-networking geek swoon. But we won’t know for a while, because the company doesn’t plan to unveil its product or partners until the third quarter of this year.

Essentially, Plume and most of its rivals aim to take the technology behind expensive, enterprise-grade Wi-Fi systems for offices and make it cheap enough to use in your home.

Others are tackling the problem with wires, paradoxically. Comcast, the nation’s largest cable-TV provider, has quietly been testing systems that rely on the networks of coaxial cables spread across newer U.S. homes. The systems put multiple routers in different parts of a home to create a single seamless wireless network, says a company spokesman.

The biggest competitor of all in this space could soon be Alphabet’s Google. Mr. Diner said he believes Google is working on a mesh solution similar to Plume’s. Mr. Wuellner declined to comment on Google’s plans for future iterations of OnHub. But he said most industry players are moving from a single hub, like Google’s current offering, toward systems with multiple nodes.

Taken together, this means that the future of Wi-Fi in your home looks a lot like the present of Wi-Fi in your office. There will be antennas everywhere, possibly in every room. It will be insanely fast. It will be cheap, though you might have a new monthly bill, to pay Plume, Google, your cable provider or some other company for the cloud services required to manage your home network.

© Emily Prapuolenis/The Wall Street Journal

Given our increasing dependence on ever more wireless bandwidth, these companies are betting we’ll be happy to pay for the privilege.

Write to Christopher Mims at christopher.mims@wsj.com

Article by: The Wall Street Journal

How Good Is This $79 Computer?

Computers are officially dirt cheap. Yep, this one costs $79.

One reason the Endless Mini is so cheap is that this grapefruit-sized PC is sold on its own. You supply the keyboard, mouse and display yourself. The computer, built with developing countries in mind, doesn’t just hook into newer, flat-panel screens via HDMI—it also connects to older tube TVs by way of a composite video cable.

The Mini runs a Linux-based operating system which looks and works much like a tablet, with a row of app icons laid out in a grid on-screen.

Because Internet access isn’t a given (even in the U.S.), the Mini designed to be useful without a Web connection. Straight out of the box, it has more than 100 apps pre-installed, in your choice of English or Spanish. These apps span from K-12 education, to a free office suite, to games and even recipes.

Endless Mobile, the startup behind the Mini, focused most of the pre-loaded apps on education, with lessons and videos covering math, history, science, geography, animals, dinosaurs, and other subjects. There’s a massive encyclopedia and apps for editing Word docs, spreadsheets and PowerPoint-style presentations.

© Emily Prapuolenis/The Wall Street Journal

By being able to handle both school work and grown-up work, the Endless Mini is a viable option for people at any age who are looking for a low-cost, easy-to-use PC. This is a computer both children and grandparents could take to easily.

Google’s Chrome Web browser is installed too. But to use that, you need Internet connectivity. The Endless Mini comes in two configurations: a basic $79 model that relies on an Ethernet port for wired Internet access (and has 1GB of RAM and 24GB of internal storage). A $99 version adds Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity (plus 2GB of RAM and 32GB of storage).

Both versions run on a 1.5GHz ARM processor—the sort of CPU more often found in low-end phones than PCs. If this isn’t your first computer, you might be frustrated by the Endless Mini’s slow loading of apps and Web pages. In real-world use, online games like “Cut the Rope” were stuttery but playable, and YouTube buffered like it always does, but videos played fine. Only Facebook , with all its photos and videos, left me genuinely annoyed.

One other problem: a software glitch in a pre-production device loaned to the tester by Endless for this review was unable to log into the device about halfway through testing. Endless supplied a replacement and it worked fine. The company says the issue has been fixed on the devices currently being shipped. But this hiccup is a reminder that Endless, founded in 2011, is a young, unproven company. Who knows how long Endless will be around or whether or not its take on Linux will be supported for decades to come?

In truth, this isn’t a computer built to last as long as an expensive laptop or desktop. It’s a $79 or $99 PC for people who haven’t been able to afford a computer at all before. Because of its ease of use and wealth of pre-installed, offline-friendly apps, its usefulness extends to anyone of who doesn’t have hundreds to spend. For that person, a $79 PC could be life changing.

Article from Wall Street Journal

Facebook Is Tracking You More Than You Realize

Whenever you’re on Facebook, do you ever get the feeling that you’re being watched? An ad pops up that’s right up your alley, or three new articles show up in your feed that  similar to something you’ve just clicked on.
Sometimes it seems like Facebook knows you personally, and that’s because it does. It has algorithms that track what you like, watch and click on. That information is then passed along to Facebook advertisers.
Facebook itself isn’t the only culprit. Tons of companies use Facebook’s platform as a way to track you. In fact, right now there a probably dozens of companies that are watching your posts, storing your profile information and more, without you even realizing it. Today, I’m going to tell you how to stop it.
How did this happen in the first place?
When Facebook first started out, people rushed to the platform because of the many perks that it offered. One of those perks, and probably the most appealing, was the fact that Facebook was entirely ad-free. You could use the platform to connect with family and friends without being bothered by someone trying to sell you something.
Well, like they say, “All good things must come to an end.” Eventually, Facebook began selling ads like everyone else. And that’s when everything changed.
People realized that Facebook provided a treasure trove of information for advertisers. By clicking “like” users were telling companies exactly what they wanted — more of this, less of that, please. This led to the big data tracking we now see.
Three sneaky ways companies are tracking you:
Most people understand that Facebook is tracking their preferences whenever they use the app. But, few realize they’re being tracked in other ways too. And, that’s what these third-party companies are banking on. If you don’t know you’re being tracked, then you won’t ask them to stop. So, here are three things to watch out for.
Facebook apps: This is when you receive a request to play a Facebook game your friends are obsessed with, and you decide to sign up. If you’ve ever done this before, then you’ve allowed that app developer  you. These third-party apps integrate with your Facebook profile and generally have permission to pull whatever information they want. And although you can edit what information they can access, very few people do.
Facebook logins: This is when you visit a site and it says “Log in with Facebook,” and you do, then you’re letting that company track you.
Friends’ apps monitoring you: Even if you didn’t download an app, Facebook’s default settings allow apps your friends have installed to also see YOU. It’s pretty scary.
How to stop it from happening:
You might be wondering why this even matters, and how it really impacts you personally. The easiest way to answer those questions is to point out all of those big data breaches you hear about almost daily. Hackers rarely waste time on individuals these days. They’ve got much bigger fish to fry. Large retailers, for example – or the databases where these third-party companies store the information they’ve gathered. That’s why everyone should take these steps to protect their private information.
Review and edit installed apps: To see what apps you’ve installed over the years, open Facebook in your browser, click the down arrow in the upper right corner and select “Settings.” Then click on the “Apps” header in the left column.
To see what information an app is accessing, click the pencil icon next to any of the apps to see and edit the settings. The first setting lets you set who can see that you use the app. It defaults to “Only Me,” so it isn’t a big deal. Below it, however, is another story.
In the case of Skype, for example, it pulls your public profile information along with your list of friends, email address,  and hometown.
Remember that this information is being stored on a third-party server. Not every app developer is going to have Microsoft-level security, and hackers are good at turning tiny pieces of stolen information into big gains.
If you want to keep using the app, you can deselect certain items, such as your email address. Be aware that won’t remove the information from the app developer’s servers, however. If you change your email address in the future, however, the developer won’t get the new one.
Remove apps you don’t use: If you don’t want to use the app anymore, you can click the “Remove app” link at the bottom of the page. Just remember that this won’t automatically remove your information from the app developer’s servers. For  you’ll need to contact the app developer directly. Facebook has a link for more information on this under the “Remove info collected by the app” section in the app’s settings.
Turn off apps completely: If you’ve deleted all the apps, and you’re not keen on accidentally installing more in the future, you can turn off the app platform completely. Just note you won’t be able to install apps or log in to third-party sites using Facebook until you turn this back on.
To turn off the app platform, go back to the App Settings page. Under “Apps, Websites and Plugins,” click the “Edit” button. At first, this just looks like a way to disable app notifications and invites from other people, which is a big help on its own. However, you’ll want to click the “Disable Platform” link in the bottom left corner.
Facebook gives you the standard warning about what disabling the platform does. If you’re OK with it, click the “Disable Platform” button. Again, this won’t remove information that app developers might have collected about you already.
Stop logging into sites using Facebook: In the future, when you’re adding an app or logging into a website try to avoid logging in with Facebook. But, if you must use Facebook to log in, then look for the “Log in Anonymously” or “Guest” option so it won’t share your information.
Stop friends’ apps from seeing your info: Apps can still get your information through your friends. By default as your friends install apps, those apps have permission to grab whatever info about  friends can see.
To put a stop to this, go back to the App Settings page. Then under “Apps Others Use” click the “Edit” button.
You’ll see everything that your friends’ apps can see about you. Go through and uncheck every option listed on the page, and then click “Save.” Now companies can’t track new information about you.
Apps aren’t the only worry you’ll run into on Facebook. Recently I told you how scammers use Facebook like-farming can put your privacy at risk. Find out how like-farming works and how you can avoid it.
If you want to like something safe that will also bring you the latest news and updates to stay ahead of the game in your digital life, head over to my Facebook page at Facebook.com/KimKomando and click the like button.

Article From USA Today

Are There Cracks In Your Security Foundation?

Security is a game changer for business operations. If you want to take advantage of the benefits of technologies like mobile, cloud, and big data, then security should be your number one priority. Without a secure foundation, your business remains vulnerable to attack. Use these tips to assess the current state of your foundation, fix any cracks you find, and prevent further issues.

Assess your vulnerability to attack

Hackers see small and midsize businesses as low-hanging fruit that often provide the gateway to more lucrative targets. As businesses become more interconnected, hackers can steal information from one business to gain access to another.
For the safety of both your business and others, ask the hard-hitting questions:

  • When did you last perform a security audit of your business functions?
  • Have you installed the recommended patches and upgrades for all devices that access your data, including employee mobile devices?
  • Do you update business policies to match current threats?
  • Do your employees know how hackers gain access to private data?
  • Do you enforce strong password use and two-factor authentication?
  • Do you have an incident response plan if an attack occurs?

An assessment answers these questions and reveals weaknesses in your defenses.

Fix foundation cracks

Mobile. Cloud. Big data. Without strong, secure networks, you cannot safely protect your business from the related threats and risks attending these technologies.
To many companies, mobile devices are vital to operations, and changes in apps, devices, and operating systems plague these devices with frequent security issues. Mobile application management (MAM) and mobile device management (MDM) can close the gaps and back doors hackers exploit. Educate employees on safe mobile device use and why policy enforcement is necessary.

Today, many businesses mix public and private cloud-based technology with on-premise traditional infrastructure. Your organization should determine the safest place to store data, how it is accessed, and how much protection surrounds it. Encryption and access control policies can protect sensitive data no matter where it resides on the network. Sound backup and disaster recovery plans can prevent downtime if an attack leads to data theft or destruction.

Businesses gather and store mountains of business data to achieve greater customer insight and competitive advantage. Event filtering, automated log scanning, and attack path analysis can reveal security risks in real time.

Prepare for future attacks

Security isn’t a one-time task. Your business should continually address vulnerabilities and cyber crime innovations by:

  • Planning frequent security audits to uncover and fix weaknesses.
  • Reviewing policies to ensure they address new threats.
  • Teaching employees to recognize malicious threats that aim to dupe them into providing unauthorized access to sensitive data.
  • Enforcing the basics, including strong passwords, software patches and upgrades, role-based access control, and white-listed and black-listed apps.
  • Creating backup and disaster recovery plans.
  • Preparing for the worst by creating incident response plans for the most likely attack types.

No single action will secure your business. Hackers seek cracks wherever they can find them. A solid foundation will force these criminals to look elsewhere.

Share XP Files With Windows 10

Summary

With Windows XP, you can share files and documents with other users on your computer and with other users on a network. There is a new user interface (UI) named Simple File Sharing and a new Shared Documents feature. This article describes the new file sharing UI and discusses the following topics:

  • How to turn Simple File Sharing on and off
  • How to manage and configure levels of access to shares and files
  • Guidelines for file sharing in Windows XP
  • Advanced troubleshoot file sharing problems
INTRODUCTION

On a Windows XP-based computer, you can share files among both local and remote users. Local users log on to your computer directly through their own accounts or through a Guest account. Remote users connect to your computer over the network and access the files that are shared on your computer.

You can access the Simple File Sharing UI by viewing a folder’s properties. Through the Simple File Sharing UI, you can configure both share and NTFS file system permissions at the folder level. These permissions apply to the folder, all the files in that folder, subfolders, and all the files in the subfolders. Files and folders that are created in or copied to a folder inherit the permissions that are defined for their parent folder. This article describes how to configure access to your files, depending on permission levels. Some information that this article contains about these permission levels is not documented in the operating system files or in the Help file.

More information

With file sharing in Windows XP, you can configure five levels of permissions. You can configure Levels 1, 2, 4, and 5 by using the Simple File Sharing UI. To do this, right-click the folder, and then click Sharing and Security to open the Simple File Sharing UI. To configure Level 3, copy a file or a folder into the “Shared Documents” folder under “My Computer.” This configuration does not change when you turn on or turn off Simple File Sharing. Level 1 is the most private and secure setting, while Level 5 is the most public and the most changeable (nonsecure) setting.

Turning on and turning off Simple File Sharing

Note Windows XP Home Edition-based computers always have Simple File Sharing enabled.

By default, the Simple File Sharing UI is turned on in Windows XP Professional-based computers that are joined to a workgroup. Windows XP Professional-based computers that are joined to a domain use only the classic file sharing and security interface. When you use the Simple File Sharing UI (that is located in the folder’s properties), both share and file permissions are configured.

If you turn off Simple File Sharing, you have more control over the permissions to individual users. However, you must have advanced knowledge of NTFS and share permissions to help keep your folders and files more secure. If you turn off Simple File Sharing, the Shared Documents feature is not turned off.

To turn Simple File Sharing on or off in Windows XP Professional, follow these steps:

  1. Click Start, and then click My Computer on the desktop.
  2. On the Tools menu, click Folder Options.
  3. Click the View tab, and then select the Use Simple File Sharing (Recommended) check box to turn on Simple File Sharing. (Clear this check box to turn off this feature.)

Managing levels of access to shares and to files

You can use Simple File Sharing to configure five levels of access to shares and files:

  • Level 1: My Documents (Private)
  • Level 2: My Documents (Default)
  • Level 3: Files in shared documents available to local users
  • Level 4: Shared Files on the Network (Readable by Everyone)
  • Level 5: Shared Files on the Network (Readable and Writable by Everyone)

Notes

  • By default, files that are stored in “My Documents” are at Level 2.
  • Levels 1, 2, and 3 folders are available only to a user who is logging on locally. Users who log on locally include a user who logs on to a Windows XP Professional-based computer from a Remote Desktop (RDP) session.
  • Levels 4 and 5 folders are available to users who log on locally and remote users from the network.

The following table describes the permissions:

Access Level Everyone (NTFS/File) Owner System Administrators Everyone (Share)
Level 1 Not available Full Control Full Control Not available Not available
Level 2 Not available Full Control Full Control Full Control Not available
Level 3 Read Full Control Full Control Full Control Not available
Level 4 Read Full Control Full Control Full Control Read
Level 5 Change Full Control Full Control Full Control Full Control
 Level 1: My Documents (Private)

The owner of the file or folder has read and write permission to the file or folder. Nobody else may read or write to the folder or the files in it. All subfolders that are contained in a folder that is marked as private remain private unless you change the parent folder permissions.

If you are a Computer Administrator and create a user password for your account by using the User Accounts Control Panel tool, you are prompted to make your files and folder private.

Note The option to make a folder private (Level 1) is available only to a user account in its own My Documents folder.

To configure a folder and all the files in it to Level 1, follow these steps:

  1. Right-click the folder, and then click Sharing and Security.
  2. Select the Make this Folder Private check box, and then click OK.

Local NTFS Permissions:

  • Owner: Full Control
  • System: Full Control

Network Share Permissions:

  • Not Shared

Level 2 (Default): My Documents (Default)

The owner of the file or folder and local Computer Administrators have read and write permission to the file or folder. Nobody else may read or write to the folder or the files in it. This is the default setting for all the folders and files in each user’s My Documents folder.
To configure a folder and all the files in it to Level 2, follow these steps:

  1. Right-click the folder, and then click Sharing and Security.
  2. Make sure that both the Make this Folder Private and the Share this folder on the network check boxes are cleared, and then click OK.

Local NTFS Permissions:

  • Owner: Full Control
  • Administrators: Full Control
  • System: Full Control

Network Share Permissions:

  • Not Shared

Level 3: Files in shared documents available to local users

Files are shared with users who log on to the computer locally. Local Computer Administrators can read, write, and delete the files in the Shared Documents folder. Restricted Users can only read the files in the Shared Documents folder. In Windows XP Professional, Power Users may also read, write, or delete any files in the Shared Documents Folder. The Power Users group is available only in Windows XP Professional. Remote users cannot access folders or files at Level 3. To allow remote users to access files, you must share them out on the network (Level 4 or 5).

To configure a file or a folder and all the files in it to Level 3, start Microsoft Windows Explorer, and then copy or move the file or folder to the Shared Documents folder under My Computer.

Local NTFS Permissions:

  • Owner: Full Control
  • Administrators: Full Control
  • Power Users: Change
  • Restricted Users: Read
  • System: Full Control

Network Share Permissions:

  • Not Shared

Level 4: Shared on the Network (Read-Only)

Files are shared for everyone to read on the network. All local users, including the Guest account, can read the files. But they cannot modify the contents. Any user can read and change your files.

To configure a folder and all the files in it to Level 4, follow these steps:

  1. Right-click the folder, and then click Sharing and Security.
  2. Click to select the Share this folder on the network check box, click to clear the Allow network users to change my files check box, and then click OK.

Local NTFS Permissions:

  • Owner: Full Control
  • Administrators: Full Control
  • System: Full Control
  • Everyone: Read

Network Share Permissions:

  • Everyone: Read

Level 5: Shared on the network (Read and Write)

This level is the most available and least secure access level. Any user (local or remote) can read, write, change, or delete a file in a folder shared at this access level. We recommend that this level be used only for a closed network that has a firewall configured. All local users including the Guest account can also read and modify the files.

To configure a folder and all the files in it to Level 5, follow these steps:

  1. Right-click the folder, and then click Sharing and Security.
  2. Click to select the Share this folder on the network check box, click to select the Allow network users to change my files check box, and then click OK.

Local NTFS Permissions:

  • Owner: Full Control
  • Administrators: Full Control
  • System: Full Control
  • Everyone: Change

Network Share Permissions:

  • Everyone: Full Control

Note All NTFS permissions that refer to Everyone include the Guest account.

All the levels that this article describes are mutually exclusive. Private folders (Level 1) cannot be shared unless they are no longer private. Shared folders (Level 4 and 5) cannot be made private until they are unshared.

If you create a folder in the Shared Documents folder (Level 3), share it on the network, and then allow network users to change your files (Level 5), the permissions for Level 5 are effective for the folder, the files in that folder, and the subfolders. The other files and folders in the Shared Documents folder remain configured at Level 3.

Note The only exception is if you have a folder (SampleSubFolder) that is shared at Level 4 inside a folder (SampleFolder) that is shared at Level 5. Remote users have the correct access level to each shared folder. Locally logged-on users have writable (Level 5) permissions to the parent (SampleFolder) and child (SampleSubFolder) folders.

Note If you are not comfortable with the information that is presented in this section, ask someone for help or contact support. For information about how to contact support, visit the Microsoft Help and Support contact information Web site:

Guidelines

We recommend that you only share folders on the network that remote users on other computers must access. We recommend that you do not share the root of the system drive. When you do this, your computer is more vulnerable to malicious remote users. The Sharing tab of the drive’s Properties dialog box contains a warning when you try to share a root folder (for example, C:\). To continue, you must click the If you understand the risk but still want to share the root of the drive, click here link. Only computer administrators can share the root of the drive.

Files on a read-only device such as a CD-ROM shared at Level 4 or 5 are available only if the CD-ROM is in the CD drive. Any CD-ROM that is in the CD drive is available to all users on the network.

A file’s permission may differ from the parent folder if one of the following conditions is true:

  • You use the move command at a command prompt to move a file into the folder from a folder on the same drive that has different permissions.
  • You use a script to move the file into the folder from a folder on the same drive that has different permissions.
  • You run Cacls.exe at a command prompt or a script to change file permissions.
  • Files existed on the hard disk before you installed Windows XP.
  • You changed a file’s permissions while Simple File Sharing was turned off on Windows XP Professional.

Note NTFS permissions are not maintained on file move operations when you use Windows Explorer with Simple File Sharing turned on.

If you turn on and turn off Simple File Sharing, the permissions on files are not changed. The NTFS and share permissions do not change until you change the permissions in the interface. If you set the permissions with Simple File Sharing enabled, only Access Control Entries (ACEs) on files that are used for Simple File Sharing are affected. The following ACEs in the Discretionary Access Control List (DACL) of the files or folders are affected by the Simple File Sharing interface:

  • Owner
  • Administrators
  • Everyone
  • System

Advanced troubleshooting for configuring file sharing in Windows XP

Note This section is intended for advanced computer users. If you are not comfortable with advanced troubleshooting, ask someone for help or contact support. For information about how to contact support, see the Microsoft Help and Support contact information Web site:

Expected upgrade behavior

A Windows 2000 Professional-based or a Windows NT 4.0-based computer that is joined to a domain or a workgroup that is upgraded to Windows XP Professional maintains its domain or workgroup membership respectively and has the classic file sharing and security UI turned on. NTFS and share permissions are not changed with the upgrade.

By default, if you upgrade a computer that is running Microsoft Windows 98, Windows 98 Second Edition, or Windows Millennium Edition that has “per share” sharing permissions to Windows XP, Simple File Sharing is always turned on. Shares that have passwords assigned to them are removed, and shares that have blank passwords remain shared after the upgrade.

If you upgrade a computer that is running Windows 98, Windows 98 Second Edition, or Windows Millennium Edition to Windows XP Professional and that computer is logged on to a domain, if that computer has share level access turned on and joins the domain while the Setup program is running, the computer starts with Simple File Sharing turned off.
By default, a Windows 98, Windows 98 Second Edition, or Windows Millennium Edition-based computer that is upgraded to Windows XP Home has Simple File Sharing turned on.

Known issues

For remote users to access files from the network (Levels 4 and 5), the Internet Connection Firewall (ICF) must be disabled on the network interface that the remote users connect through.

For more information, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

298804 Internet firewalls can prevent browsing and file sharing

When Simple File Sharing is turned on, remote administration and remote registry editing does not work as expected from a remote computer, and connections to administrative shares (such as C$) do not work because all remote users authenticate as Guest. Guest accounts do not have administrative rights. When Simple File Sharing is turned on, if you configure specific user ACEs, remote users are not affected when Simple File Sharing is turned on because all remote users authenticate as Guest when Simple File Sharing is turned on.

Remote users may receive an “Access Denied” message on a share that they had connected to successfully before. This behavior occurs after the hard disk is converted to NTFS. This behavior occurs on Windows XP-based computers that have Simple File Sharing turned on that were upgraded from Windows 98, Windows 98 Second Edition, or Windows Millennium Edition. This behavior occurs because the default permissions of a hard disk that is converted to NTFS do not contain the Everyone group. The Everyone group is required for remote users who are using the Guest account to access the files To reset the permissions, stop sharing, and reshare the affected folders.

Behavior that is affected when Simple File Sharing is turned on

  • The Simple File Sharing UI in the properties of a folder configures both share and file permissions.
  • Remote users always authenticate as the Guest account.For more information, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
    302927 Computer Management displays user account names when logged on as Guest
  • Windows Explorer does not keep permissions on files that are moved in the same NTFS drive. The permissions are always inherited from the parent folder.
  • On Windows XP Professional-based computers that have Simple File Sharing turned on and Windows XP Home Edition-based computers, the Shared Folders (Fsmgmt.msc) and Computer Management (Compmgmt.msc) tools reflect a simpler sharing and security UI.
  • In the Computer Management and Shared Folders consoles, the New File Share command is unavailable when you right-click the Shares icon. Also, if you right-click any listed share, the Properties and Stop Share commands are unavailable.

Behavior that is not caused by turning on Simple File Sharing

  • In Windows XP Home Edition, the Computer Management snap-in does not display the Local Users and Groups node. The Local Users and Groups snap-in cannot be added to a custom snap-in. This behavior is a limitation of Windows XP Home Edition. It is not caused by Simple File Sharing.
  • If you turn off the Guest account in the User Accounts Control Panel tool, only the guest’s ability to log on locally is affected. The account is not disabled.
  • Remote users cannot authenticate by using an account that has a blank password. This authentication is configured separately.
  • Windows XP Home Edition cannot join a domain. It can only be configured as a member of a workgroup.For more information, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
    303606 Can log on without password by using Guest account after upgrade from Windows 2000
References

For information about how to configure file sharing in Windows Vista, visit the following Microsoft Web site:

Properties

Article ID: 304040 – Last Review: 06/19/2014 13:14:00 – Revision: 19.0

    • Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition

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How To Recover From iPhone Bad Upgrade

Q. Ever since I upgraded my iPhone to iOS 9.2.1, it’s been acting crazy. It powers off when I don’t want it to, then won’t let me shut if off when I try. How do I shake it out of this?
A. The latest update to Apple’s mobile operating system landed poorly on the iPhone 5s of the friend who sent this e-mail. The symptoms included not just those shutdown snafus but also weird behavior with scrolling and typing that she charitably summed up as “lots of very funky stuff going on.”
To fix that, you should try doing the update the old-fashioned way–through Apple’s iTunes desktop software.
I know, iTunes is nobody’s favorite app from Apple these days. But it also retains the singular ability to perform a complete backup of a phone, down to its saved passwords, and then reload your apps, data and settings intact after restoring the system software to factory condition.
So either fire up your own Mac or PC or that of a friend — you can also go to an Apple Store — and plug your iPhone into it. Select the phone in iTunes and click the buttons to set up a backup to “This computer” and to encrypt it, then click “Back Up Now.”
You’ll have to set a password to protect that backup, but OS X will offer to remember that for you. I won’t scold you if you write down that password, as long as the paper involved isn’t a Post-It note stuck to the monitor of a computer other people use.
After the backup finishes, click the “Restore iPhone” button to have iTunes erase the device, install a clean copy of the latest version of iOS and then put back your own apps, data and settings. That should generally work; see, for example, this report on Apple’s tech-support forums of a successful resolution via this route.
If your iPhone has descended into a state in which it won’t even turn on, try its “Recovery Mode.” Plug it into the computer, then press and hold its Sleep/Wake and Home buttons until it restarts and then goes from displaying a white Apple logo to showing the iTunes icon.
At that point, iTunes will open a dialog asking if you’d like to “Update” or “Restore” the device. The first will put a clean copy of iOS onboard while preserving your stuff; the latter will wipe the phone first before reinstalling iOS, so you’d best have a backup handy.
If you can’t even get that to work, you can try putting the device into “DFU” (Device Firmware Update) mode, in which no part of iOS runs and iTunes sees it as a blanked device that can only be restored to factory settings. For help with the somewhat tricky sequence of button pushes that invokes DFU mode, see Rene Ritchie’s walkthrough at iMore.
What if you have an Android device that’s been misbehaving? In Google’s mobile operating system, you can restore a device to stock condition in the Settings app: Tap “Backup & reset,” then tap “Factory Data Reset.”
You can also invoke Android’s own recovery mode if the phone has become too unstable to let you navigate to that part of the Settings app, but the procedure involved varies by phone, so you’ll have to check the documentation for your own model. (Sorry!)
Android and iOS, however, stop resembling each other once you try to get your old data back in place. Although much of your information should be automatically synced to the cloud services of Google and others, a lot of app-specific data is not, which can leave you stuck with some tedious reconstruction of your settings. (Sorry!)
Rob Pegoraro is a tech writer based out of Washington, D.C. To submit a tech question, e-mail Rob at rob@robpegoraro.com. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/robpegoraro

How To Protect Your Mac From Ransomware

Mac users worried about what could be the first full-fledged ransomware attack on Apple (AAPL)’s desktop operating system can take certain steps to protect themselves.
First off, users should avoid downloading Transmission BitTorrent version 2.90, the file-sharing software that delivered the ransomware — a form of malware that encrypts certain files and data until users submit a bitcoin payment.
Mac users can also make sure Apple’s own malware protection feature, XProtect, is enabled. That feature blocks known malicious software from being installed on the tech giant’s computers.
The ransomware, dubbed KeRanger, was detected by security company Palo Alto Networks on March 4, specifically on computers with Transmission BitTorrent installed, Palo Alto said Sunday.
In this instance, the ransomware authors asked victims to pay one bitcoin (or about $414 as of Monday) in exchange for their data.
In an email to CNBC, an Apple spokesperson said the company has updated XProtect and pulled Transmission BitTorrent’s developer certificate, so that no one can install the infected app.

Instagram For Windows 10 Mobile Beta Arrives

Instagram, the popular photo-sharing social network owned by Facebook, has finally released an app built for Windows 10 Mobile. The absence of a recently updated Instagram app has been a serious sore point in Microsoft’s mobile ecosystem, but that looks set to change soon as a beta version of a new app hit the Windows Store on Monday.
Instagram has an older app for Windows Phone 8, which is supported on Windows 10, but it has languished in perpetual beta since its launch in 2013. The review section is full of complaints that the app has not been updated. The old version is missing crucial features like user-to-user direct messaging and the ability to upload non-square photos.
This new version for Windows 10 Mobile more closely resembles the existing iOS app, upgrading the interface and adding in missing features. In particular, users can now direct message both photos and videos to each other.
The company is asking users to report any problems they find in the beta version. To report issues, users have to physically shake their phones, which brings up the feedback interface.
As a beta, there are some teething issues. Instagram notes that Facebook logins may not work as expected, nor does the “share to” function. The workflow to create and edit an image is also not too stable for the moment: Instagram is telling users to expect app crashes.
Nonetheless, it’s an exciting development for a platform that it seemed like Instagram had given up on. It remains to be seen whether the company decides to expand out the app into a “universal app,” running on desktop as well as mobile. That seems to be unlikely for now, though, as Instagram still doesn’t offer an iPad app, instead focusing specifically on phones.

Crooks Launch ‘Customer Service’ Website For Victims

By Herb Weisbaum

Now here’s a first — crooks who realize the importance of customer service.

It’s the latest twist in the global CryptoLocker ransomware attack. This diabolically nasty malware locks up all of the victim’s personal files — and in some cases, backup files, too — with state-of-the-art encryption. The bad guys have the only decryption key and they demand $300 or two Bitcoins to get it.

“It’s been a disaster for many of the people hit with it,” said Lawrence Abrams who has been tracking the spread of this infection on BleepingComputer.com

Within the past few days, the criminal gang behind CryptoLocker created a site for victims who need help making their required extortion payments.

“These guys have some big cojones,” said security expert Brian Krebs, who writes the blog KrebsOnSecurity.

The CryptoLocker Decryption Service allows victims to check the status of their “order” (the ransom payment) and complete the transaction. I am not making this up!

Those who paid the ransom (with either Green Dot cards or Bitcoins), but did not get the decryption key — or got one that didn’t work — can download it again.

Those who missed the 72-hour deadline can also get their key, but the price jumps from two Bitcoins to 10. At today’s market value, that’s nearly $4,000. And Green Dot is not accepted with this extended-deadline service.

Why are the CryptoLocker crooks doing this?

“They were leaving money on the table,” Abrams told me. “They created this site to capture all of the money they were losing because people couldn’t figure out how to make the ransom payment or missed the deadline.”

The bad guys also ran into some technical problems after they launched their attack. It turns out that when antivirus software removes CryptoLocker from an infected computer, the victim can no longer pay the ransom and decrypt their files. To do that, they had to re-install the CryptoLocker malware, something that was not only weird, but cumbersome.

By using the customer service site, victims can get a key that will unscramble their files without the need to re-infect their computers.

Is this the new reality?

Law enforcement and cyber security experts always advise victims of ransomware attacks not to pay the ransom. After all, that extortion money goes to fund a criminal operation, and there’s no guarantee the files will be released.

But when you’re the victim, when all of your data has been encrypted and you don’t have a suitable backup, you’re faced with two choices: pay up or have those files frozen forever. That’s why so many people are paying and why security experts fear more of this nasty malware is on the way.

“Anytime you see an underground business that is doing well, you will always see more people copying it,” said Krebs. “Unfortunately, I think these destructive attacks are here to stay and they’re only going to get worse and more intense.”

Sean Sullivan, security advisor at F-Secure, agrees.

Until now, ransomware attacks have been limited by the lack of a global payment method. It took a lot of work to get paid in different parts of the world. Bitcoin, the new digital currency, solves that problem.

“CryptoLocker, using Bitcoin, might finally have reduced the overhead of not having a global form of payment,” Sullivan said. “We’re getting to the tipping point where ransomware will become epidemic because it’s not that hard to get paid anymore.”

New zip file being send

BleepingComputer.com
The new CryptoBlocker delivery vehicle is a Zip file that requires a password to open. This is designed to fool antivirus software that can now detect the malware hidden in a regular zip file. Open that file and your files are toast.

CryptoLocker: A new method of attack

There are various ways for malware to infect your computer. Security experts tell me CryptoLocker is delivered in a Zip file attachment. Open that attachment and the malware is loaded onto your machine.

Some antivirus software can now detect CryptoLocker hidden in a Zip file and prevent the infection. So, a couple of days ago, the bad guys modified their attack.

According to Lawrence Abrams at Bleeping Computer, the Zip files containing CryptoLocker are now password protected. That little trick gets them past the security software.

Abrams said it appears the password “PaSdIaoQ” is the same for everyone. Open that attachment and your files are toast.

How do you protect yourself?

It’s the same advice you’re heard before: Don’t open attachments from an unknown sender, have up-to-date security software and back-up your files religiously. And because CryptoLocker can compromise files already backed-up, you need to reassess how you do your backups.

Network drives (whether physical or in the cloud) that are always connected to your computer are often vulnerable. Krebs suggests doing a manual backup and then disconnecting the drive when you’re done. It’s a lot more work, but much safer.

Krebs warns that we are now dealing with a new generation of malware. Once it’s done its damage, you cannot undo it yourself.

“This is scary stuff,” he said. “People need to rethink how they protect their important files.”

In a new article on his blog, Krebs recommends two tools that can block CryptoLocker infections: CryptoPrevent from Foolish IT for individual windows users and the CryptoLocker Prevention Kit from Third Tier for small business administrators.

More Info:

Herb Weisbaum is The ConsumerMan

Don’t Click ‘Like’ On Facebook

Facebook has changed the way people do a lot of things online. For example, you probably notice yourself reflexively clicking ‘like’ on anything your friends post on Facebook, even if it’s just to acknowledge you saw it. Scammers are taking advantage of that reflex for a dangerous scam called “like-farming.”

What is like-farming?

Like-farming is when scammers post an attention-grabbing story on Facebook for the express purpose of cultivating likes and shares. Based on the way Facebook works, the more likes and shares a post has, the more likely it is to show up in people’s News Feeds.

Be careful what you like on Facebook.© AP Photo/Mary Altaffer Be careful what you like on Facebook. This gives the scammer more eyeballs for posts that trick people out of information or send them to malicious downloads. The big question, of course, is why Facebook doesn’t stop these posts before they get too big. And that’s where the real scam comes in.

How the scam works

Scammers have found a simple way to fly under the radar during the early phases of their operation. The story they originally post to Facebook has nothing dangerous about it. It’s just a regular story that anyone might post.

Only after the post gets a certain number of likes and shares does the scammer edit it and add something malicious. They might start promoting products or sell the page information in an attempt to get credit card data. In fact, if you go back through your history of liked posts, you might find that some of them have changed to something you wouldn’t have liked in a million years. By the way, if you’re not sure how to review your likes, click here for the step-by-step instructions.

So, what kinds of stories do scammers start with to trick people into liking and sharing?

Posts that should give you pause

One popular type of story is the emotional one. You’ve definitely seen the posts showing rescue animals and asking you to like if you think they’re cute. Or maybe it’s a medical story where you’re asked to like that the person was cured or to let them know they’re still beautiful after surgery.

There are also the posts that ask for a like to show that you’re against something the government is doing, or that you disagree with something terrible happening in the world. Or maybe it’s the ones that say “If I get X number of likes, then something amazing will happen for me” or “I was challenged to get X number of likes.”

Basically, any post that asks you to like it for emotional reasons, unless you know the person who created the original post, is quite probably a like-farm post. Of course, emotional posts aren’t the only types of post you need to watch for.

Other types of scam posts to avoid

There are a lot of scams on Facebook and most of them can be used for like-farming. A popular one, for example, is a post that asks you to like or share so you can win something cool. These pop up most often when Apple launches a new iPhone or iPad.

You might have seen recently during the huge Powerball frenzy people posting on Facebook saying anyone who likes their post will get a share of their winnings. How real do you think those were?

Just on Thursday, police in Australia warned Facebook users of a like farming scam that attempted to lure customers of Qantas Airlines.

What about brain-teaser posts, such as the ones that have you like or share if you can read the words backwards or solve a tricky math problem? Yep, those are often like-farm posts, too.

It isn’t just posts either; it can also be pages. A scammer might set up a page for “I love puppies” or what appears to be a worthy company or organization. It puts up enough content to get a lot of likes, then switches the content to spam and scams. Once you’ve liked the page, everything new the scammers put up goes on your News Feed and, in some cases, your friends’ feeds as well.

How to avoid like-farming

Your best bet to avoid like-farming is to be very judicious about what you like and share on Facebook. Don’t just reflexively click “like” on everything. Take a look at where the post is coming from. If it’s from someone you don’t recognize, it could be a friend of a friend or it could be a complete stranger. It would be good to find out.

Notice the content and whether it promises anything for liking or sharing. If it does, it’s a good clue that it’s a scam of some kind. The same goes if you feel pushed or pressured into clicking like or share.

Don’t forget that, in the end, minimizing your likes is more than just a good security measure. It also reduces the clutter in your friends’ news feeds, and their clutter in yours, so you can all spend more time seeing the really important posts. That’s a win-win for everyone.

Article from MSN Money