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I have a standard dial up service which is more or less fine with me,
I have seen some companies on the net advertising what they call High Speed Dial Up
A little faster mite me nice
The question is if it's worth 5 dollars a month more or would I just be throwing money away I could spend on my scoot
Motorcycles I know -Computers I don't know
T I A :)
 

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I think they use data compression to tweak a little better response. But then your PC would have to decompress the data as it is received. Probably not a big problem if your processor is powerful enough. Is it worth $5/month more? I kind of doubt it.

Billmeek is our resident tech guru - maybe he knows. Or we may have a couple of folks who have tried it and can lend their opinion.
 

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In my opinion...it's a waste. Most of these offerings compress photos on the server side and never decompress them. They lower the resolution of the image so it requires less time to download. I've had tons of support calls with people griping about "images look fuzzy" because of the image compression. We normally end up turning the option off.

I'd check to see if cablemodem and/or DSL is available in your area and at what price. It may cost more, but if you want speed, I think it's worth it. I just glanced at the Bellsouth pages and they offer DSL for $24.95 per month. Right now they have a promo that drops that cost to $9.95 per month for the first 6 months, free modem, no setup fee, and $50 cash back. If available in your area, check the details.
 

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Cox cable now offers two different speeds - at different pricing. I have the fastest available, but my 15 year old granddaughter just got the slower speed cable. Moving up from dial-up, she is very happy. They also usually offer deals where you get your first several months for free.

I'd rather go to jail than go back to dial-up. :wink:

But I realize that some places it isn't an option. I had DSL back in Connecticut, and it was fine too.
 

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The question is if it's worth 5 dollars a month more or would I just be throwing money away I could spend on my scoot
I have built and installed a lot of systems over the years, so I have to agree with Bill. Either stay with what you have or go Broadband (cable/DSL) otherwise you're wasting your money.

If you do go Broadband, make sure you install a "hardware firewall" (Linksys, D-Link, etc) to protect yourself from all the evil, :angry3: bad people on the net who would like to ruin your day.

Of course, which either way you go, always have a good "anti-virus" program - one that is updated regularly.

Reg
 

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While on the topic of computer security, the most common problems I run into in tech suport is spyware. Personally, I use SpyBot Search and Destroy to remove spyware from Windows machines. I also use SpywareBlaster to stop spyware from installing. Since installing SywareBlaster on several PCs, none of them have been infected with spyware. Both SpyBot Search and Destroy and SpywareBlaster are 'freeware' but accept donations.
 

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I do have a hardware firewall built into my SpeedStream router that I use for wireless networking in the house. I used to run the free ZoneAlarm software firewall, but after installing the router, ZoneAlarm never recorded any hits. So after about 6 months I removed ZoneAlarm from my system. Apparently the redundancy was not needed.

I just installed Windows XP Service Pack Two last week, and I noticed that it installs a software firewall bundled into Windows. It is supposed to display an alert when it blocks an intrusion attempt - so far it has been silent. So it would appear that the hardware firewall is doing the job.

If you don't have a hardware firewall though, one of the freeby software firewalls like Zone Alarm, or Sygate Personal Firewall, or the new one built into Windows XP via Service Pack Two, will do the job.
 

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Bill,

Spyware is generally Cookie based isn't it? Cox just provided a free software spyware scanner and I tried running it on my wife's PC (my old laptop). It seemed to run forever, and was generating this endless list of cookies. I bailed out after a while. I want to understand this better before I proceed.
 

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Some are cookies that track your internet usage across multiple sites. I don't like the privacy intrusion ... but it's not that big of deal. The real nasty spyware is software that gets installed on your machine (most oftem with other 'free software') that ties into your internet software to track where you go on the net. I've seen spyware so bad that Windows would not boot up. One of the most common indications of spyware (or a virus) is the machine is running very slow. Anytime I get a call where it's a performance issue, the first thing I check is for spyware. Second is to check for viruses. Those 2 items make up about 80-90 percent of the support calls I've had over the last year. Of those, well over 50% were spyware.
 

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I have a brother that is certified, but not employed by Microsoft for support. He told me NOT to download or update to XP Service Pack 2 as there are a lot of problems and bugs. Too late for my work computer, and yes, there are some slow down and other issues that are related (According to my IT Manager) to Service pack 2.
 

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casek said:
I have a brother that is certified, but not employed by Microsoft for support. He told me NOT to download or update to XP Service Pack 2 as there are a lot of problems and bugs.
Now you tell me! :evil:

So far so good though. Been running with it for about a week - no apparent problems. Never was a version of Windows without bugs anyway. But Windows XP has been very reliable for me. Better than that darn Windows 2000 that I had to use at work. Took forever to boot it and shut it down - and allowed the administrators to disable all of the "productive" features that I wanted to use, like installing non-corporate wallpaper on my desktop. :roll:
 

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The firewall included with XP Service Pack 2 is only very basic and can only block incoming traffic. ZoneAlarm (and many other software firewalls) have the additional ability to block outgoing traffic that may be generated by a malicious program (spyware, adware, virus)

For most users, SP2 should not cause a problem. There are specific issues that do occur due to it. See the Microsoft Knowledge Base Article - 842242 for more details.
 

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Randy said:
I have a standard dial up service which is more or less fine with me,
I have seen some companies on the net advertising what they call High Speed Dial Up
A little faster mite me nice
The question is if it's worth 5 dollars a month more or would I just be throwing money away I could spend on my scoot
Motorcycles I know -Computers I don't know
T I A :)
Give it a shot and see if you like it. I'd pay $5 per month to watch two dogs f***.




Peace.
 

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I agree with all that Bill has said. It amazes me at the number of computers that I have to fix because their owners were to cheap to install a good anti-virus program. I have had very good success with "PC-Cillian" (http://www.antivirus.com) for many, many years. It's only available on the Internet, which is why you don't see it advertised all over the place like some other products.

Personally I don't like software firewalls (although I have XP's turn on - because it's already there), so I use a good hardward fireware (never given me a problem, unlike some software), plus I run "Adaware" (free) & "Spybot" (free) at least once a week. What one doesn't find, the other will. :hello1:

I firmly believe in layers of security, therefore my computers run just fine 24/7, and in all these years I have never been hacked or been taken down by a virus. If you want to see how secure you are, here is a good site that will check it out for you for free: http://www.grc.com/default.htm. Click on the "Shields Up" program and follow the instructions. At least you'll know how vulnerable you are to the "hackers".

Every four months I take the covers off my computers and clean them out with a small round horse-hair artist brush, a vacuum cleaner, and a can of air to finish up the job. I swear some people use their computers as vacuum cleaners, because when I service them, it's incredible that amount of dust that I see in there. Then they wonder why their computers are giving them fits. :roll: Lots of dust acts as an insulator, allowing heat to build up & computers do not like excessive heat, so keep them clean.

I also keep my computers up-to-date with all the Critical Updates as they come available. I have not yet downloaded SP-2, as there is no pressing reason to yet. I will wait for another month or so for Microsoft to tweak it first. Besides, they don't pay me to be their Beta Tester. :joker:

Happy computing!

Reg
 

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DialUp Help

Wow, what a forum. All the health check programs "prescribed" gel with those I have installed with info from other sources.

Now I have to get brave and pull the covers and see whether I have a "Time Vacuum" or a "Time Computer".

Thank you to all those with computer knowledge who have taken the time to enlighten us guys who don't really know diddly about pc's.

Greengoose, its time to thank you again for putting this site together.

Regards
 

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Fortunately for me, I have no immediate plans for going to jail, or for canceling my high speed internet connection. :wink:

Of course, if I get caught going over 100 mph on my scooter, that could change. But I've been behaving lately.
 

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billmeek said:
While on the topic of computer security, the most common problems I run into in tech suport is spyware. Personally, I use SpyBot Search and Destroy to remove spyware from Windows machines. I also use SpywareBlaster to stop spyware from installing. Since installing SywareBlaster on several PCs, none of them have been infected with spyware. Both SpyBot Search and Destroy and SpywareBlaster are 'freeware' but accept donations.
Well.. I downloaded both programs.

Ran "Spybot - Search and Destroy" and it found quite the collection of tracking cookies, which I let it delete. It also found 6 registry entries, which I also let it clean up. At one point it complained about a file named MFC42D.DLL being missing, but it still worked OK. It certainly ran faster than the freebie from Cox cable that I tried before.

I also installed SpywareBlaster. It seems to be blocking those nasty old tracking cookies, and is reasonably unobtrusive. It appears to integrate cleanly with the IE browser.

Thanks for the tip.

Incidently, I run Panda Titanium Antivurus for virus protection, and I like it a lot. Norton Antivirus and Mcafee were getting too intrusive for my tastes. Panda sits nicely in the background, and only pops up a notification window once or twice a day when the automatic updates are received. That also can be silenced, but it's pretty impressive to see how many virus sig updates come in each day.
 

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pauljo said:
At one point it complained about a file named MFC42D.DLL being missing, but it still worked OK.
Hmmm... that's odd. The DLL file listed is a 'debug' version of the file and shouldn't be needed in a production software. You should email him and let him know about the error.


pauljo said:
I also installed SpywareBlaster. It seems to be blocking those nasty old tracking cookies, and is reasonably unobtrusive. It appears to integrate cleanly with the IE browser.
One of the neat things about SpywareBlaster is that it doesn't run in the background. It simply sets entries in the registry that keeps the spyware from being able to install.

pauljo said:
Incidently, I run Panda Titanium Antivurus for virus protection, and I like it a lot. Norton Antivirus and Mcafee were getting too intrusive for my tastes. Panda sits nicely in the background, and only pops up a notification window once or twice a day when the automatic updates are received. That also can be silenced, but it's pretty impressive to see how many virus sig updates come in each day.
On several of my machines I run F-prot by FRISK Software International for antivirus protection. It's inexpensive for the number of copies (12) I need. It doesn't hog system resourses either. The only thing it's lacking is scanning of emails. It scans memory or if you try to save an email attachment to disk it'll recognise it then. Mine is set to update the virus defs once an hour and I've noticed several updates in one day. It's also available for several operating systems. The DOS version is free for personal use. For FAT formatted drives, you can build a DOS boot disk and use 2 diskettes to load F-Prot for DOS to scan the machine. Pretty handy for working on older systems (Win 95,98, ME).
 
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