After more than 12 years of service, Microsoft finally pulled the plug on Windows XP by ceasing to support the operating system last week. However, Microsoft did promise to keep doling out updates for its Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE) software, including the version that runs on XP, but in doing so, the Redmond outfit only made things worse. That's because the latest MSE update is causing some XP machines to freeze up and run slow.
It (literally) pays to know all the crafty ways you can save money without sacrificing your power user cred
As much as we love ogling top-of-the-line PC hardware and fantasizing about price-be-damned rigs, we also love, love, love to stretch a dollar. Does that make us cheapskates? You betcha, if that’s what you want to call someone who doesn’t pay a premium when he or she doesn’t have to. Sign us up! In fact, where computing is concerned, knowing all the various angles to save a buck—a buck that can then be put toward new and better gear, mind you—is as much a part of being a power user as knowing how to flash a BIOS or overclock RAM. If you’re currently spending top dollar on your PC activities, it’s time you got schooled in the fine art of penny-pinching. From free software alternatives, to the best deals on all forms of digital entertainment, to hardware-buying tips, to our blueprint for a $600 PC, this year’s Cheapskate’s Guide can save you thousands of dollars and make you a more savvy consumer in the process.
Note: This article appeared in the October 2012 issue of the magazine.
Microsoft Security Essentials has done it again. For the second time since its inception, the free antivirus software from Microsoft finds itself without German security and antivirus research outfit AV-TEST’s seal of approval, having failed in the latest of the firm’s bimonthly certification tests.
Microsoft Security Essentials has never been the absolute best anti-virus solution out there, but its pretty darn good. It catches the vast majority of the security threats in the wild today, is absolutely free, and is supported by the guys who make the operating system itself so performance is always top notch. Common sense would suggest these guys would be running away with the market share, and in-fact that’s exactly what’s happening. A software development and service company by the name of OPSWAT published a report this week based on the findings of their AppRemoval tool, and it shows Microsoft gaining ground at a rapid pace.
Valentine's Day is for lovers, as the saying goes, and Microsoft spent the day showing Google just how much it cares. A faulty security update pushed out alongside several other patches yesterday caused Internet Explorer to incorrectly flag Google.com -- yep, the most visited website in the universe and the homepage of scads of users -- as being a severe threat called Exploit:JS/Blacole.BW. Oops!
Java’s ubiquity combined with its propensity to stay out of date on a large chunk of its install base makes it an ideal target for hackers. This is enough to ensure that whenever the subject of third-party software vulnerabilities crops up for discussion Java is somewhere at the top of the ensuing list of those most vulnerable. According to the latest volume of Microsoft’s Security Intelligence Report, Java was responsible for the largest number of attacks in the first half of 2011.
Launched over two years back, Microsoft Security Essentials has established itself as one of the best free security apps out there. In this time, two versions of the free anti-virus have been released to mostly positive reviews. Our own reviews of MSE are a point in case. Now Microsoft is laying the groundwork for the release of the tool’s next version.
Earlier today we told you that Microsoft Security Essentials was being accused of killing Chrome, and now we have the details. Turns out Redmond totally messed up on this one. Security Essentials was indeed removing or blocking Chrome on many users’ PCs. After scrambling for most of the day, Microsoft has a fix available.
Mighty funny timing, Microsoft. Just yesterday, we reported that Google’s Chrome browser was threatening to overtake Firefox in the coming months thanks to soaring usage rates caused, in large part, by FF and IE defectors. Then, this morning, Internet forums are awash with rage because a new update to Microsoft’s Security Essentials and ForeFront AV software began calling Chrome a Trojan and erasing it from users machines. Coincidence? Yeah, it probably is. But that still doesn’t change the fact that users are pissed.
Microsoft didn’t even bother to announce a version upgrade from 1.0 to 2.0, and at a glance, you wouldn’t be able to tell the difference. But make no mistake, Microsoft’s team of mechanics tweaked the scan engine and made some other changes underneath the hood.