Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Who iframed Easter Rabbit

In the last couple of days, a lot of threads were posted at several different forums where people were complaining about being infected via a trustworthy site.
What happened was, many of these sites were hacked and were injected with a malware embedded iframe. This iframe launched a javascript to infect the visitors of the site with a Trojan downloader.

It's still amazing how many people got infected with this, because this is actually an older exploit that was being used - the MS06-014 exploit - Vulnerability in the Microsoft Data Access Components (MDAC).
This means that MANY have not updated their Windows for years, since this was actually patched in april 2006 - almost 2 years ago!

So once again, I cannot stress enough how important it is to update your Windows - don't wait - update TODAY!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Time to draw again...

I currently don't have the inspiration to blog about Computer stuff, so let's add something else instead, reveal one of my other hobbies...

... one of the drawings I made.

I love to draw and used to draw a lot in the past, but unfortunately, I don't really find the time to draw anymore. I'm not *that good at it, but it relaxes me, so I guess I should start drawing again, because I really need a "computer break" once in a while :)

If you want to see some other drawings I made, look here.
Yes, I know, all dogs, that's because I love them. :)
I'll add more pictures there in the future.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Do, or do not. There is no try.

And now for something completely different - not computer or security related...
Some of you may recognise above quote (title). It's a famous quote from Star Wars - quoted by Yoda. (Yes, I am a Star Wars fan and yes, I know that sounds weird for a female :P )
Anyway, that's what this blogpost is about - about Jedi, the dog my mother is taking care of.
Since recently my mother has some serious health problems, so she can't take care of Jedi anymore. That's why we need to find a new home for Jedi.
Jedi is female, breed is American Staffordshire. She's now 6 years old. She's very social and smart.

Since I already have 3 dogs (also American Staffordshires), I can't have another one anymore.
Although I used to breed them, since I moved, I don't have the space and time anymore for a 4th dog.
That's why I thought that, maybe this blogpost may help to find someone who wants to adopt Jedi.
Since I live in Belgium (Bruges), it would be ideal to find someone nearby.

Keep in mind, a dog is for life - that's why I used "Do, or do not. There is no try." as the title of my blogpost here - this since you'll have to think twice before you make the decision to adopt/get a dog.
If you're interested and need more info about Jedi, contact me via my "dog"site or drop a comment below.
(Only serious candidates - the rest will be ignored)

UPDATE: I've found someone to take care of Jedi. I'm sure she'll be in good hands :)

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Windows Vista - Backup pleasseeeee....

Even though Windows Vista is much more secure than XP (if UAC is enabled), people still allow many programs from dubious resources (p2p resources/crack-hacksites) and run/install it. Yes, people love to click the "OK" button even though it's not OK.
That was a bad idea.. wasn't it? So I hope you'll read the notifications/messages next time....
Anyway, if you indeed managed to install malware and the malware already compromised your system where it also damaged a lot - then the fastest and especially safest solution is a format and reinstall.
I actually do not really recommend a format and reinstall anyway, but in some cases, you really have no other option if you want to trust your system ever again..
Unfortunately, nowadays malware is more advanced and nastier than a couple of years ago.
After all, it would be irresponsible of me if I proceed with giving instructions for manual removal and tell the user afterwards his/her system is clean - because it is NOT! So in such cases, I always make the user aware of with what s(he) is dealing and let them decide what to do - a format and reinstall or manual removal. If they choose for the manual removal, then I will assist them, but make them aware that they may never trust this system anymore, it's compromised and many issues may still appear afterwards.

And that's where the problems start...
"Sorry, I can't do a format/reinstall, because I have so many important documents, pictures etc present that I don't want to lose"
And in most cases, the malware present already damaged so much > result > computer won't even boot anymore. Ofcourse there are still a lot of methods to access your important files in such cases anyway to back them up...

And that's why Windows Vista made it a lot easier for you.... By default, it contains the option to backup your important files. So if it's present by default? Why not use it? No need to install additional tools for this, just run the backup wizard.
Start orb > Control Panel > System and Maintenance > Back up your computer.
There you can select to create a backup of your files and folders and store them wherever you want.
Easy huh? So why don't you backup right now? Because you never know what the future may bring. After all, not only malware, but a corrupted program install/updates may cause a system unstable/unbootable as well.

MEDION AKOYA MD 96630 Premium - I'm impressed

I was already looking for a new laptop since last year, but couldn't decide which one to buy.
My current laptop Fujitsu siemens Amilo M1425 XP SP2 installed is great, but I needed an extra one with Windows Vista installed, because it's easier for me to properly troubleshoot Windows Vista issues when I have the operating system in front of me. I actually already had Windows Vista installed in a Virtual machine (Vmware), but since it needs so much resources, you can imagine that it was really crawling and I actually could have a cup of coffee while Vista was loading in Vmware.
I also could have a dual boot - one with XP, one with Vista, but then again, I'm a bit lazy and don't like to switch everytime :)

So, that's why I decided to buy a new laptop.....

Since the public release of Vista, many laptops were already preinstalled with Vista and there were still many incompatibility issues with other hardware and software installed. Most software - at that time - were not "vista ready" yet, so that's why I decided to wait a bit longer.

Nowadays, most software/hardware should be Vista compatible, so I've waited long enough, time to get myself a new OS, new laptop.

I was actually going to wait until april/may this year for the new laptop, this to make sure everything was REALLY Vista compatible (hardware related).
But I've changed my mind when I received a mail with this. Hmm Medion, I've heard some weird things about it....

699 euro.. I thought they were joking. So, I went to Aldi and bought it anyway, and guess what - it was no joke. I've uninstalled the preinstalled Bullguard and some other "goodies", reinstalled my "own" programs and everything works great and incredibly fast - even faster than my Fujitsu siemens Amilo M1425! (what do you expect with 3GB of ram) :)

So medion isn't so bad after all - on the contrary....