Streetlights didn't stop working, satellites never fell from orbit, and the internet didn't spontaneously combust. So what exactly did the Conficker.c worm manage to accomplish? Up till now, the answer is 'not much,' but Trend Micro warns the worm has started making its move.
It's been just over a week since Conficker.c was supposed to turn machines against man in an epic battle not even Will Smith (the actor, not the Editor-in-Chief) would be able to defeat, and while we can probably put such related fears to rest, Trend Micro security researchers say machines already infected with the worm have begun receiving a new payload through P2P. The payload is being detected as WORM_DOWNAD.E.
"Basically the component it's downloading via peer-to-peer is just a dropper -- so it drops yet another component, which we are in the process of finalizing analysis on now," Trend Micro researcher Paul Ferguson said in a conversation with eWEEK. "It looks like it has some rootkit capabilities, but beyond that right now I can't go into any additional detail, I don't have complete information in front of me."
Conficker.c received much media attention prior to April 1st, when the worm was expected to wreak all kinds of havoc. But April Fool's Day has come and gone without much movement from the worm, which either means the threat was grossly overblown, or its writers are waiting for the dust to settle.
We've already posted one of the coolest case mods you'll ever see (check it out here), and moving to the complete opposite end of the spectrum (who are we kidding, this one's not even on the spectrum), is the tackiest mouse you'll never own. Or at least we hope you never do.
The Gold Bullion Wireless Mouse has so much wrong with it, it's tough knowing where to start. Should we point out that it's not real gold? How about we start by talking about the horrific rectangular design which, while meant to resemble a gold bullion, screams in the face of ergonomics and usability? Maybe we should point out the lack of additional buttons beyond the standard right and left click. Or we could go for the obvious and discuss how absurdly tacky it is, right down to its description as a "great big bling thing!" Screw it, you're on your own in deciding where to start faulting this peripheral.
Of absolutely no interest to anyone, anywhere, the Gold Bullion Wireless Mouse is available for pre-order through www.iwantoneofthose.com (how's that for irony?) for around $35.
Call it spring cleaning or just the natural progression of things. Either way, it's out with the old and in with the new, says Intel, who updated its product portfolio this week. To make room for its Nehalem core-based Xeons, the chip maker informed its customers it is phasing out both 65nm Xeon processors built around Conroe, and its newer 45nm chips with a Wolfdale core.
Specifically, the company is taking its axe to the Xeon 3085, 3075, 3065, X3350, and X3320. Final shipments for these chips will take place in January 2010, with final orders being accepted up until October 9, 2009.
By getting rid of the its Core 2-based Xeons, Intel is making room for Nehalem-based Xeon chips, the first of which was introduced last week, 17 new chips in all.
The formation of the consolidated Taiwan Memory Company (TMC) faces a major setback today, as both Micron Technology and Nanya Technology, along with their joint venture Inotera memories, have pulled out of discussions to be part of the new group, DigiTimes reports.
For Micron's part, the company wasn't comfortable with the risk of its tecnology IP potentially leaking out if multiple patent holders began working under TMC. Micron stressed that its IP portfolio for specialty DRAM is more advanced than Elpida's, who is one of the participants.
Facing the worst DRAM market in 15 years, the Taiwanese government earlier this year announced the formation of the new DRAM company, TMC. The point of the new company was to consolidate memory companies and rescue its ailing DRAM makers. The government-led project is still in talks with various memory makers, including Winbond, who just yesterday confirmed it met with decision makers for TMC.
Micron, Nanya, and Inotera said they will continue to develop and improve their own partnership in preparation for competition from the new memory company.
If you have kids, make sure they're out of the room before looking any further. That is, unless you want to devote the next 18 days to building a kick-ass case mod that will appeal to just about any age. According to EnglishRussia.com, that's how long it took "this Russian guy" to build his Wall-E inspired case mod.
After watching the movie, the Russian modder thought to himself, "I want to build such a thing and hold my computer stuff in it." And that he did, using Swiss precision homemade heavy metal.
This ranks as one of the coolest case mods we've ever seen, and even better, the modder offered up a worklog so you can replicate the design at home. See you in 18 days.
AMD has just released new Catalyst 9.4 drivers for ATI videocard owners. In keeping with the promise the company previously made, Catalyst 9.4 offers unified support for Windows 7, XP, and Vista.
Highlighted in the 9.4 release is the new ATI OverDrive auto-tuning application. Designed for the ATI Radeon HD 4000 series, the new OverDrive module claims to "accurately determine the best overclocked engine and memory values for ATI OverDrive supported ATI Radeon graphics accelerators." AMD cautions it will not warranty busted videocards that give up the ghost as a result of using the utility, which further highlights why it's so cool XFX, who will have your back, now sells ATI-branded cards.
Catalyst 9.4 resolves a number if issues covering all supported operating systems. Among the resolutions:
World of Warcraft no longer flickers when Shadow is set to medium/high in a CrossFire configuration (Vista)
Resolutions above 1024 x 768 will now full screen properly for specific HDMI displays (Vista)
Overlay Theater Mode display no longer corrupt after enabling 3D screen saver (XP)
Display now redraws correctly in City of Villains after changing graphics settings (Windows 7)
No more jitter or flicker caused by WinDVD9 HD playback (Windows 7)
After 12 years of printing money working in faithful service to EA, Sims and Spore’s resident genius has decided to call it quits. But just because Wright managed to create a virtual representation of all biological existence doesn’t mean he’s done making most other game designers look silly just yet – far from it.
Wright’s next endeavor, called Stupid Fun Club, is a think tank that has actually been bubbling around for a few years now. However, back when it was merely a side project, the most unfittingly named club ever seemed content to just manufacture cutting-edge robots – whereas now, it’ll develop new intellectual properties across multiple media formats like film, TV, the Internet, and of course, videogames.
Make no mistake, though: EA may have let Wright off the leash, but – much to the chagrin of some, we’re sure – Stupid Fun Club is still very much in the mega-publisher’s lap. As a result, EA owns just as much Stupid Fun Club stock as Wright himself and has the first right to develop anything the thinkin’-est tank in the business comes up with.
The rub of it all? Mr. Wright hasn’t exactly given EA his walking papers, but he’ll certainly have more wiggling room, at least in the conceptual phase, from now on. As for his first task as an un-tethered man, we’re hoping he’ll invent a few new words to replace “stupid” on the intelligence hierarchy, since he’s apparently laid claim to it. Really, it’s not even fair. If Will friggin’ Wright calls himself stupid, what’s everyone else?
Palit Microsystems began offering a custom-built GTX 285 with 2GB memory in February. From the face of it, Sparkle’s entire staff was probably marooned on a remote island – or away on an intergalactic excursion, and therefore had no idea what was going around.
The GTX 285 runs at a core clock frequency of 648MHz. Sparkle has also promised its card will deliver “30% faster performance than competing single GPU graphic card solutions.” But the company is mum on pricing.
A few weeks after Jesse Vincent, an inveterate hacker, yielded to his strong urge to hack another popular gadget, Savory was born. Savory is a Kindle 2 app that converts .pdf and .epub files into the .mobi format supported by the ebook reader. Though similar solutions have been available on the internet for quite sometime, Savory is unique as it executes the conversion on Amazon’s ebook reader itself. But like all great things, Savory has its limitations. It doesn’t support Kindle 1 and won’t convert ebooks protected by DRM. Please note that running unsigned code may void your manufacturer’s warranty.
Last week, it was rumored that Acer would unveil the very first Ion-based nettop this week. That rumor has been vindicated by Acer. The AspireRevo, as the diminutive nettop is called, was unveiled on Tuesday by Acer and Nvidia.
The nettop features up to 4GB of RAM, a maximum of 250GB hard drive, HDMI/VGA outputs and six USB 2.0 ports. To put the stats into perspective, the nettop measures 7.1 x 7.1 x 1.2 inches (about the same size as a hardcover book). Its pricing and release date are still awaited.