All posts for the month May, 2011

Disadvantages of Windows 98 and 98SE

Many years ago, I wrote about the disadvantages of Windows 3.1 because I started noticing people searching for that. Now, I see people asking the same question about Windows 98. I spent 9 months of my life ripping Windows 98 apart and putting it back together again and writing about it, so I know it […]

How to secure a computer like a spook

A link to the National Security Agency’s (NSA) guidance on hardening operating systems has been floating around various blogs today. But the NSA’s guidance on configuring Windows 7 and other recent operating systems is, to put it mildly, a bit incomplete. What one government agency doesn’t do, another probably does. That’s usually a safe assumption […]

Shame on you, Dave, if you run out of money in retirement

My employer got bought out, so all of us in our office are in-processing with our new corporate overlords. When this happens–yes, something similar has happened before–I end up giving a lot of 401(k) advice. Yesterday I ran a 401(k) projection for one coworker, and we talked about it again at the end of the […]

Do tablets cut into PC sales?

I see multiple reports that PC makers are seeing tablets cut into the sales of traditional PCs. The two items don’t compete directly, but when consumers have limited disposable income, I can see them either buying a less-expensive PC so they can also buy a tablet, or hanging on to an aging PC another year […]

How Windows knows if your network requires you to visit a web page

This is a nice writeup on how Windows Vista and Windows 7 know whether you have an active Internet connection and whether you need to visit a page in your web browser to activate it. It also talks about the privacy implications, and how to set up the service to use your server, rather than […]

If Ramsey’s retirement advice is bad, it’s fixable

The New York Times is criticizing (or echoing criticisms) of some of Dave Ramsey’s retirement advice. Namely, that the math he’s using on S&P 500 returns is overly optimistic–a 12% annual return, when a more realistic return when all factors are considered is more like 7 percent.

LED is the future, but I don’t think it’s here yet

San Jose Mercury News columnist (and fellow Mizzou alumnus) Troy Wolverton has been testing LED bulbs. His conclusion: The quality of light is good, prices will continue to fall and efficiency will continue to improve, so they’re the future, but the future isn’t here yet. I’m always trying to wring the last bit of value […]

Traditional baseball uniform numbers

We were watching How Do You Know? on DVD this weekend, and I had to point out something that wasn’t realistic. The main characters were pitchers for the Washington Nationals, and a pitcher warming up was wearing number 8. Pitchers don’t wear number 8, I said. Why?

How to use Sticky Keys to change/unlock a forgotten password

This isn’t a particularly new trick, nor did I invent it. But it’s a good trick for breaking into a Windows system when you don’t have a lot of tools at your disposal, and have legitimate reason to do so–like a lost or forgotten local administrator password. I’ve talked about some of those reasons before. […]

How to save a fortune on cables

If you’ve wondered about buying HDMI cables at monoprice.com rather than buying expensive cables at retail, PC Magazine did some testing, and came to a conclusion: they don’t matter.