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#64 - 04/13/06 11:28 AM Keeping my computer clean and tight
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My laptop should be getting in on Friday. I want to install a virus scanner, firewall, spyware removal stuff...all that jazz that will keep my computer clean and running smoothly. Problem is I have no clue what software I need (besides those three ideas, is there anything else) and what brands I should get. Really appreciate any advice.

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#65 - 04/13/06 11:41 AM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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also if I've got a wireless router do I even need a software firewall?

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#66 - 04/13/06 12:54 PM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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Windows Or Mac?


If its a windows system you should consider the following advice (if you don't want to spend alot).

1. Get all Service Packs and uptodate patches
2. AVG Free is a great updated Virus Scanner, and the price is good. http://free.grisoft.com/doc/1
3. Depending on how savvy you are with Internet protocols and what not you have a few options for personal firewalls. Beginners should go with ZoneAlarm. Its pretty quick and easy to learn. If you feel you can handle a challenge then Tiny Firewall is your best bet. http://www.iopus.com/guides/freefirewalls.htm for both.
4. Spybot is the best damn Spyware removal software on the planet. Also helps protect your Registry from being overwritten or modified by programs you install. http://www.safer-networking.org/
5. Get yourself a copy of the Windows Defender Beta from Microsoft. Scans and neutralizes malware as well as potential security threats. http://www.microsoft.com/athome/security/spyware/software/default.mspx
6. If you are also interested in seeing how secure your system is, you can also get the Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer as well. http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/tools/mbsahome.mspx
7. Download Firefox
8. Finally be sure to run applications that are designed to work with XP SP2. A lot of problems and headaches can be caused by installing older versions of software. For example installing an old version of Roxio CD Burning software causes problems with the system (Status of CD-Rom drive never changes, instability, annoying warning popups at start up.)
9. For the love of God don't install AIM, use an open varient like GAIM. Its less flashy but doesn't install that fucking AOL Browser on your system that you can't remove, as well as that piece of shit Viewpoint.

Advanced:
Install Linux instead or use VMware and browse the internet that way.

Edit: Oh didn't see your WiFi router post. The answer is yes. One, on most home routers the firewall sucks. Two, the router firewall won't protect you from crap already inside the network. Three, ZoneAlarm will also tip you off if some program or process is trying to access the Net without permission, which could be a Trojan trying to call home.


"Remember how much fun you had shooting spitwads at the teacher in seventh grade? Imagine applying that kind of attitude to actually fucking with Mitsubishi!"
- Jello Biafra
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#67 - 04/13/06 07:23 PM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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thanks for the info Def

just fyi it runs XP Pro, and I'll be using it for poker so no linux for me

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#68 - 04/13/06 10:07 PM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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[Gizmo on IceMyst's Desktop]

I DISPISE AVG! It is a piece of shit... Just "acquire" yourself a copy of Symantic Antivirus.

I would concourr with Senior Defcon on the ZoneAlarm comment, however you will find that the freeware version blows chunks.

Spybot all the way bitch!

Have yet to use Windows Defender, darned validation .

Baseline, see Defender comment...

Mozilla had my baby, its name is FireFox (and its bastardized twin is the Mozilla Suite; but don't forget baby sister ThunderBird!)

I've yet to really have much problem wiht SP2, then again we all know my relaxed policies on upgrades.

GAIM is just straight sexy; however there are numerous plugins to AIM to remove ad's; I don't recommend Trillian, why? it's a piece of crap.


*Hell hath no fury like a womens anger and damn be the fool who gets in her way*

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#69 - 04/13/06 10:56 PM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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What about Black Ice Defender as a firewall? I remember that it was pretty highly regarded a couple years ago, but haven't read anything about it lately.

Also why do you say Trill sucks? I really like it, and always thought you have as well. What makes GAIM better?

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#70 - 04/13/06 11:17 PM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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Okay so you said that I should look at ZoneAlarm, and I've also read a bunch of good things about it, so I went to their site to check it out. They sell the security suite for the exact same price as they sell the firewall. It's got the firewall, along with antivirus, phishing and spam blocker, IM protection, and wireless protection. So it seems like it'd make sense to get the suite since it's the same price and has those features. However I don't know if the extra features it has are any good...and I'd probably rather get a dedicated antivirus program anyway. So would ZoneAlarm's virus protection just get in the way?

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#71 - 04/13/06 11:58 PM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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A couple other simple things you can do to pimp your rig.

1. Create a user account with limited privilages and use that instead of the default admin account.
2. Increase the size of your paging file (swap space). You can do this by:
Control Panel|System|Advanced
Then click on the performance settings, and then the advanced tab. Best bet is to set it to atleast 1.5 or 2 times your ram.
3. While in the performance settings go over to Visual Effects and turn off all that shit.
4. Choose to go with the classic theme, start menu, and window settings.
5. Fire up MSConfig (Run|MSConfig) and click on the "Startup" tab and turn off any shit that doesn't need to run at start up (like MS Office, AIM, shit like that but not your virus scanners and the like.)
6. Run Chkdsk and Defrag (In safe mode) regularly.

Edit: Damn, you slipped in another one. Yeah sometimes there are problems if you have two virus scanners running at the same time. Best bet is to pick one that updates signatures often. Weither or not you want to go with the suite is up to you, but remember that like all software companies some make one product well and the rest can suck. The tools we listed are free though.


"Remember how much fun you had shooting spitwads at the teacher in seventh grade? Imagine applying that kind of attitude to actually fucking with Mitsubishi!"
- Jello Biafra
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#72 - 04/13/06 11:58 PM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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Tiny Firewall is for the micromanagers - it tells you if ANYTHING suspicious happens (including registry edits and program spawning). It's also got really powerful rules - if you have the free time to set them up.


"We can categorically state that we have not released man-eating badgers into the area."

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#73 - 04/14/06 12:07 AM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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Gizzy, I hate the new AIM Triton. Not only is it really ugly, it also installs the AOL Browser. Yes, AOL Browser really just is a bastardization of Netscape's Browser but a few things really irk me. I don't have the option to not have it install. You can't uninstall it without removing Triton. Plus AOL Browser uses the Viewpoint Media Player which ofcourse is also installed without telling me and seems to regenerate like spyware.

I prefer GAIM because its simple and clean. Its low on the features but gets the job done. I don't like Trillian simply because of the interface and the fact that there are better tools (Bersirc, YIM, etc) out there.


"Remember how much fun you had shooting spitwads at the teacher in seventh grade? Imagine applying that kind of attitude to actually fucking with Mitsubishi!"
- Jello Biafra
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#74 - 04/14/06 12:19 AM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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This thing has two gigs of ram, so do you think I'll really need to increase the page file?

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#75 - 04/14/06 12:21 AM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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Yes


"Remember how much fun you had shooting spitwads at the teacher in seventh grade? Imagine applying that kind of attitude to actually fucking with Mitsubishi!"
- Jello Biafra
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#76 - 04/14/06 12:28 AM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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Giz again...

I don't like BlackIce; I've used it, it didn't strike my fancy.

Why don't I like trillian? It's a memory hog; there are better FREE aim clients out there.

What makes GAIM better? It's open source, has support for plugins, etc.

I have ZA Security Suite, all I have active is the cache cleaner and the firewall; I trust my virus scanner.

I recommend a paging file of 512-1024meg.

I agree about the pretty effects, they just waste resources, same with a large background or the defuatl theme; the "classic" theme is still a very good one .

I agree about msconfig.

I don't however agree with running scandisk and defrag regularly, with an NTFS partition this shouldn't fix too many issues too often.

Also, if you're planning to defrag, go snag Diskeeper; XP comes with a stripped version of it, Pro will do you very good.

btw, TinyFirewall is for fags, you get all of that out of TeaTimer that comes bundled with Spybot.

I agree about the bullshit that ships with applications; they need to ship "unbundled" copies of software .

And yes, your computer will utilize your page file as needed.

Also, you may want to increase your MFT file size; you can do this within Diskeeper pro.

Also, if you need any utilities feel free to PM me on the irc and i'll give you "links" ...


*Hell hath no fury like a womens anger and damn be the fool who gets in her way*

Donate to the "Baby Trey's Digital Camera" fund here .
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#77 - 04/14/06 12:34 AM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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I find that atleast running Defrag regularly boosts the read/write time of the drive, and running chkdsk only takes about a minute or so. You don't have to do it every defrag, maybe once a month or so to atleast make sure everything is happy.

Also downloading the S.M.A.R.T utility for your drive manufacturer is a good idea. Just run it when you need it (Hopefully you'll never need it).

Oh one more thing, it doesn't hurt to back up your Registry before installing an exotic piece of hardware or software.


"Remember how much fun you had shooting spitwads at the teacher in seventh grade? Imagine applying that kind of attitude to actually fucking with Mitsubishi!"
- Jello Biafra
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#78 - 05/07/06 07:16 AM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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Perg you bitch, how can you not know these things...Am I the only one who has ever heard of avast! virus scanner? It's free and it has a ton of resident protection features too. And it's not a piece of crap like AVG and any sort of Norton product. For firewall I use Agnitum Outpost, but honestly I have it turned off most of the time. For spyware, I think that avast! covers me well enough. SpyBot actually kind of annoys me. If I get paranoid that I've got some I just do an Ad-Aware scan.
Good lookin on that Windows Defender tho Deffy, I hadn't heard of that...

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#79 - 05/09/06 01:43 AM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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I don't use antivirus. Except on my mail server/scanner which runs clamav. They also released a windows desktop version for free.

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#80 - 05/14/06 01:48 PM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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dash, I don't know this stuff because I've been using a mac for like three years.

Also thanks for the help everyone...but I ended up sending the laptop back because I hate Windows, and wasn't able to get it to run as smoothly as I wanted.

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#81 - 05/14/06 08:50 PM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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lol, Perg, you're my hero (Giz)...


*Hell hath no fury like a womens anger and damn be the fool who gets in her way*

Donate to the "Baby Trey's Digital Camera" fund here .
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#82 - 05/15/06 12:53 AM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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That's the problem with Mac's nugga, they make you so helpless when real problems happen


"Remember how much fun you had shooting spitwads at the teacher in seventh grade? Imagine applying that kind of attitude to actually fucking with Mitsubishi!"
- Jello Biafra
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#83 - 05/15/06 07:03 AM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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Quote:
Originally posted by Defcon:
That's the problem with Mac's nugga, they make you so helpless when real problems happen
I think it's more like they make you understand that those "real problems" shouldn't exist in the first place..

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#84 - 05/15/06 08:25 PM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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No no, I'm not talking about Computer Literate people such as you and I, I mean the rest of the population. At work we have a lot of Mac users who freak out when problems happen, problems that are usually pretty simple. This is usually because they don't learn anything, they see that Mac as an "appliance" and while quick to boast the "advantages" of Mac's they quickly show that they know shit about shit.


"Remember how much fun you had shooting spitwads at the teacher in seventh grade? Imagine applying that kind of attitude to actually fucking with Mitsubishi!"
- Jello Biafra
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#85 - 05/22/06 08:20 PM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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Mac's are so hyped now-a-days anyway. People who just use the internet and a word processor buy $2,000 Mac's for no reason at all.

Other than that I have nothing constructive to add to this topic.


Freedom is the freedom to say that two plus two make four. If that is granted, all else follows.
-George Orwell
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#86 - 05/27/06 07:08 AM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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Well dude, I wanted to get a computer that looks as good as I do.

Since that's not possible, I went with a mac - best I could do

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#87 - 05/27/06 06:06 PM Re: Keeping my computer clean and tight
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You wanna look white, plasticy, and just like every other model?


"Remember how much fun you had shooting spitwads at the teacher in seventh grade? Imagine applying that kind of attitude to actually fucking with Mitsubishi!"
- Jello Biafra
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