Welcome to the 327th issue of the PC Improvement News. PCIN consists mainly
of news and tips. There is something for everyone, and if this is your first
issue, I'm sure there will be something for you. If you give me two or three
issues, I know that you will come back for more!
Experts: Cyber-crime bigger threat than cyber-terror
"As David Perry left a cyber-security conference in Luxembourg in
2004, an airport terminal handling international flights was in chaos.
A network worm known as Sasser was scorching the world's computer systems
and had knocked out the airport's reservation desk, stranding delegates in
In a fable for the information age, conference attendees, among them some
of the world's foremost computer security experts, flipped open their laptops
and reopened the terminal in a matter of minutes."
"Dell Chief Executive Kevin Rollins is dismissing the iPod as a 'fad'
and a 'one-product wonder' and claiming the new Mac Mini won't dent the PC
In an interview with Silicon.com at Dell's headquarters here last week, Rollins
said that the number of headlines Apple grabs does not worry him and that
the company isn't 'in the same league' as Dell."
"The market for digital music on the Internet and mobile phones boomed
in 2004, according to a report released Wednesday that showed the global
recording industry collecting significant revenues from the segment for the
However, the report from the International Federation of the Phonographic
Industry, or IFPI, also warned that rampant piracy continued to erode legitimate
"An Amish PC might sound like a contradiction in terms, but Truvia
can make one for you--provided you have $55,000 to spare.
The Redmond, Wash.-based start-up specializes in building high-end PCs into
handcrafted furniture, everything from simple Amish and Shaker cabinets to
ornate Louis XV creations."
"Each issue of OutlookPower offers great ideas and helpful techniques
for getting the most out of Microsoft Outlook and Exchange. When you read
OutlookPower, you'll also be able to view the latest news about Outlook and
Exchange, read product reviews, and interact with other users of Outlook
and Exchange as well as with vendors of Outlook and Exchange-related software
and hardware products. So visit OutlookPower Magazine and get Outlook Powered!"
If you use Outlook either at work or at home, then you should definitely
check out the OutlookPower Magazine web site at http://www.outlookpower.com/ The
site doesn't have all the contents of the magazine, but there are several
tips that are very handy, and they seem to change regularly.
Show Hidden Devices in Device Manager
This is a great from from the latest issue of the LangaList newsletter.
If you aren't a subscriber to either the free newsletter or the paid one,
I would highly recommend you get moving!
"Ghostbusting In Device Manager
Hi Fred, Really enjoy the newsletter. I searched the archives and didn't
see any mention of this, so thought I might actually have something to
Windows keeps a Device Manager entry for every piece of hardware that's
ever been recognized by the system, regardless of whether it is currently
present in the machine or was even set up correctly in the first place. The "View
Hidden Devices" option in Device Manager won't show you these "residual" drivers.
You can force it to show you everything by going to My Computer Properties,
the Advanced tab, Environment Variables, and adding a new system variable
with the name "DEVMGR_SHOW_NONPRESENT_DEVICES" and a value of 1.
Now opening Device Manager and choosing "Show Hidden Devices" really
will show you everything. Standard practice at the factory is to use a single
image and just move it from model to model, letting it plug and play all
the new hardware along the way. This leaves you with an impressive list of
hardware still in the Device Manager, but no longer in the system. You also
see this to a lesser degree when you restore a system from an image you created
for backup purposes. These "residual" drivers can sometimes cause
all kinds of weirdness and are best removed by right-clicking on their entry
in the Device Manager and choosing "uninstall".
This works on Windows 2000/XP (and I assume Server 2003, though I haven't
tried it). Anyone running a factory loaded Compaq or Dell will be amazed
at the amount of junk left over from this process.
Best Regards, Jon Pickle
Thanks, Jon. Indeed, Windows has a thing about hanging on to ghost entries
in Device Manager and also in the Registry. (This is one of the reasons why
Registries inflate so much over time.) A little judicious ghostbusting lets
your PC run cleaner and leaner!"
Google releases Picasa 2
Google has released the next version of Picasa. The software allows you
to find, edit and share your photos. It automatically creates categories
based upon the folders images are stored in, as well as by date. Create web
galleries, photo CD's; order prints online and posting images to a blog are
only some of the features in this new version. You can also create your own
categories (labels) to help you catalog and sort your images the way that
Check it out at http://www.picasa.com/
PCIN is brought to you by Graham Wing. The opinions expressed are those of
the Editor, Graham Wing and the Assistant Editor, Chris Empey. Graham Wing
and Chris Empey accept no responsibility for the results obtained from trying
the tips in this newsletter.
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