Tuesday, 28 February 2017

The curse of unwanted pre-installed software...

When your new PC came off the production line it will have had a cloned harddrive installed which undoubtedly will have been filled to the brim with Crapware (potentially unwanted software). Why is this software pre-installed? ...you might think it's because the manufacturer of your PC is being kind to you by giving you free stuff, well you're wrong, in most cases it's because the various companies paid to be there, such as Antivirus programs hoping to reel you in to an annual subscription, or in some cases software written by the PC manufacturer in some vein effort to justify their brand above others.

To remove unwanted programs from your PC simply go to "Control Panel", "Ad Remove Programs", then click uninstall on the program you wish to remove and follow the prompts.

Ad Remove Programs

Uninstall Program

If you need help removing crapware from your PC call The Computer Wiz on 01553 660941 or email help@cpwiz.co.uk and we'll help you zap that crapware into orbit!

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Antivirus on a Mac!!!???

For many years now Mac users have enjoyed immunity from many Virus and Malware attacks. It's been thought that Macs were not a viable target for hackers as their market share was not as great as Windows PC's, that is until now! Last week security vendor Bitdefender uncovered a new version of the Xagent malware targeting Mac OS X and macOS Sierra. The new version os Xagent is thought to be linked to APT28/Sofacy/Sednet APT. This malware is claimed to be stealing passwords, screen grabs and exfiltrating iPhone backups stored on a Mac.

Steps you can take to keep your Mac and your data safe...

  • Don't click links in unsolicited emails.
  • Updates - Keep your Mac and Apps updated.
  • Think before you click! - Don't get suckered in by fake websites.
  • Backup & Update your iOS devices such as iPhones or iPads using iCloud as opposed to using iTunes as these backups could potentially be compromised.
  • Install Apps only from identified developers or preferably from the App Store.
  • Switch on Firewall (if it's not already on).
  • In System Preferences/Security & Privacy - Allow apps downloaded from "App Store" only.

WAIT!!! What's all this talk about Mac viruses??? I thought I was immune on a mac!!! On the whole you're much less likely to find your Mac infected by a virus than on a PC BUT your Mac is still essentially a personal computer (PC) and as such is not 100% safe from Malware or viruses although Macs do come with pretty good built in security right out of the box such as "Gate Keeper" and "System Integrity Protection (SIP)" that ensure software installed on your computer is from an Apple certified developer.

This news doesn't mean your Mac is suddenly under attack from all, it just means we must now be more vigilant when it comes to protecting our beloved Apple Macs. Remember you're still much less likely to encounter a virus or malware on a Mac than on a Windows PC. Don't have nightmares!

If you would like to talk to someone regarding Mac security call The Computer Wiz on 01553 660941 or email help@cpwiz.co.uk.

Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Can't Choose Between Windows or Mac?

Why not try Linux? Created in 1991 by Linus Torvalds Linux is the free alternative to Microsoft Windows and Apple MacOS. Linux can (in most cases) run on either Mac or PC, there are even some distributions for phone and tablet. Linux is Open Source which means it's free and the source code is open for developers change at will.

My particular favourite distribution of Linux is Ubuntu (roughly translated as "Humanity to others"). Ubuntu is a great way to get the most out of an old PC or Mac without having to pay out for an operating system and office software, Ubuntu can be downloaded free of charge from https://www.ubuntu.com/download/desktop. When it comes to Linux there really is such a thing as a free lunch!

If you need help installing or learning to use Ubuntu call The Computer Wiz on 01553 660941 or email help@cpwiz.co.uk.

Tuesday, 7 February 2017

When is a Mac not a Mac? ...when it's a PC

Own a Mac but need to run a Windows program? ...then Boot Camp is one possible solution! “Boot Camp Assistant” is an application found in your “Utilities” folder. Boot Camp allows Microsoft Windows to be installed on your Mac along side OS X or MacOS. Note - You will need a licensed full version of Microsoft Windows 8 64bit (or later). https://www.microsoftstore.com/store/msuk/en_GB/pdp/Windows-10-Home/productID.326866600#

The basics

Boot Camp works by partitioning the hard drive on your Mac and installing Microsoft Windows on that new partition, to boot your Mac in to Windows (once installed) hold down the ⌥ (option) key after the starting bong then select “windows” from the menu, your Mac will now boot exactly as a Windows PC would - While running Windows your mac is effectively a PC. 

Help with installing Windows using Boot Camp Assistant

The Computer Wiz can help with installing Windows using Boot Camp Assistant, if you want to have a go your self this guide from Apple will provide you with everything you need to know https://support.apple.com/en-gb/HT201468. Have fun!