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            Issue 47 - 1st March 2001

Welcome to Support Alert, the email newsletter that
points you to the best technical support resources
on the Internet.

Support Alert is free. If you like it, why not share
the good news and email a copy to a friend or work
colleague?

Support Alert is sponsored by PC Support Advisor and
PC Network Advisor, the standard reference sources for
support professionals.

Check out the following free tutorials available now
at http://www.pcsupportadvisor.com

* Understanding TCP/IP
* How to Dual Boot Windows 2000
* Understanding the OSI 7 Layer Model
* The Windows Registry Explained
* How to Create Bootable CDs
* JavaScript Tutorial
* IPv6 Tutorial

Plus dozens more.

               <<<>>><<<>>><<<>>>

FROM THE EDITOR

People keep telling me that the Internet is going to kill
off loads of things that we've always taken for granted.
Traditional printed magazines and books, for example, and
libraries, will be a thing of the past.  Instead, we'll
read books on screen or download them to PDAs.  Maybe.
I'm not so sure.

People even say that the traditional PC will be killed off
by the Internet.  Once we all have ADSL or other fast lines
in our homes and offices, it is said, thin-client computing
will mean that we don't install any programs or hold any
data locally. Instead, our applications will run within
Web browser windows and our data will be held safely and
securely on remote servers.  We won't need powerful PCs any
more, as we won't need to do any local processing or storage.

Most internet users still don't have enough bandwidth to
replace their TV set with a Web browser.  So traditional
television is a long way from being usurped by the net.  But
what about radio?  Systems like Napster have shown just how
powerful a resource the internet can be for people who like
listening to recorded music.  And dedicated internet radio
stations have been launched, to attract listeners such as those
in an office who already have a PC and headphones and a
fast connection.  You don't actually need a terribly fast link.
Have a look at http://www.spinner.com, for example, which plays dozens
of channels of streaming music, and will automatically change
the audio quality according to the line speed.  Got ADSL?  Then
you have perfect stereo.  Stuck with 56k?  No trouble - you can
still listen, albeit in low-fi mono.

I was interviewed by a brand new startup radio station this
week.  It's called NetFM, and lives at http://www.netfm.com.  It works
like a traditional station, in that it broadcasts 24 hours a day,
it has conventional studios, it plays records, it interviews
guests, and so on.  But it broadcasts solely over the Internet.
This gives it some unique opportunities which conventional stations
can't do.  If you hear a track you like, click a link on the Web
site and you can order the album from Amazon.  If a presenter
or advertiser mentions a product on-air, there will be similar
buy-it links.  It's really neat, and it works.

Will the Internet kill radio?  No.  Will it worry the conventional
stations in years to come?  You betcha.

Robert Schifreen

PS:  Keep sending us details of your favourite sites, for
inclusion in Support Alert!  Our email address is
editor@itp-journals.com.

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IN THIS ISSUE

1. TOP SUPPORT SITES
    - DLL Archive
    - Mail to Web
    - Crash Dump Analysis
    - Errors Documented
    - Domain List
    - Top 20 Virus Report

2. UTILITIES
    - Microsoft's Firewall
    - Smart Address 2000

3. BUGS, SERVICE RELEASES AND PATCHES
    - Latest Microsoft Patches
    - PCAnywhere DoS
    - SMS 2.0 SP3
    - ZoneAlarm Fixed

4. OTHER USEFUL STUFF
    - Get your WinXP Beta
    - Ad Blocker
    - Office XP Review
    - Yo Verity!
    - SBS 2K
    - 802.11 Cracked
    - Security Administrator

5. TECH SUPPORT RESOURCES
    - Understanding ASPs
    - Troubleshooting Word 2000

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1. TOP SUPPORT SITES
====================

DLL Archive
Missing a crucial DLL file?  Need a copy right now?  This excellent
online DLL archive will probably have it.
http://solo.abac.com/dllarchive

Mail to Web
You're away from the office.  You don't have an email client
handy, but you do have Web access.  So how do you check your
mail?  Easy.  You use this POP3 to HTTP gateway, to check your
mail right inside a web browser.
http://www.mail2web.com

Crash Dump Analysis
If Windows 2000 or NT crashes, you may want or need to read
the dump file to find out what caused the problem.  This
online article is a great place to find out how to do so.
www.win2000mag.com/Articles/Index.cfm?ArticleID=16425

Errors Documented
A useful site, this one.  This company keeps a note of
all the problems it encounters when fixing clients' PCs, and
how to fix them.
http://www.springfieldtech.com/Windows/Errors/Error_Search.htm

Domain List
So Australia is .au and the UK is .uk (rather than .gb).
But where can you find a full list of all the top-level
country domains?  Why, here, of course.
http://www.ics.uci.edu/pub/websoft/wwwstat/country-codes.txt

Top 20 Virus Report
The securityportal site continues to publish its rather useful
weekly list of the top 20 viruses encountered in the wild.
If you want to know just how prevalent a virus is, here's where
to find out.
http://securityportal.com/research/virus/virustop20.html

2. UTILITIES
============

Microsoft's Firewall
The latest release of Microsoft's proxy server has been
rewritten and renamed.  It's now called ISA Server, and is
being billed as a full-featured firewall to compete with the
likes of Check Point's Firewall-1.  You can download an eval
copy of the product now, free of charge.
http://www.microsoft.com/isaserver

Smart Address 2000
Need a centralised address book for the office LAN?  Need it
to be shareable among users, have in-built security, and
have links to MS Word to create personalised mailing lists?
Smart Address 2000 will do it all.
http://www.sa2k.com
 

3. BUGS, SERVICE RELEASES AND PATCHES
=====================================

Latest Microsoft Patches
The latest batch of security patches for Windows includes
a Denial of Service problem with NT4 servers running PPTP,
a Java vulnerability in Windows Media Player 7, and a
DoS problem with Windows 2000.  Plus, a problem that could
allow a hacker to run code of his choice on Outlook.
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/bulletin/MS01-009.asp
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/bulletin/MS01-010.asp
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/bulletin/MS01-011.asp
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/bulletin/MS01-012.asp

PCAnywhere DoS
A potential Denial of Service vulnerability has been found
in version 9 of PCAnywhere.  Read more about this, and find
a pointer to the downloadable patch, from the Web at
http://www.windowsitsecurity.com/articles/index.cfm?articleID=19950

SMS 2.0 SP3
Microsoft has released Service Pack 3 for SMS Server 2.0.
This massive 197 MB download requires SP2, so you may also
need to download that file if you don't already have it.
http://www.microsoft.com/smsmgmt/default.asp

ZoneAlarm Fixed
ZoneLabs has issued a fix for its superb firewall product
ZoneAlarm, which helps it prevent infected files such as the
recent Anna Kournikova virus from spreading.
http://www.zonelabs.com/products/zap/zap_patch.html

4. OTHER USEFUL STUFF
=====================

Get your WinXP Beta
Microsoft is about to start selling time-limited beta copies of
Whistler, now formally known as Windows XP.  If you want to check
out the product for yourself as early as possible, you can
sign up for the early evaluation programme at
http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/preview

Ad Blocker
BugAware is a program for Windows that analyses a PC and looks
for any installed "spyware", ie programs which automatically
send back information about the user to a central site.
The program currently knows about 64 such programs, and is
regularly updated via the product's Web site.
http://www.kmcsonline.com

Office XP Review
Microsoft's successor to Office 2000 is currently in beta.
Various Web sites are currently carrying reviews of the
software.  One such is the Windows SuperSite, which is releasing
a major review of all the Office XP components on a piecemeal basis.
http://www.winsupersite.com/reviews/office10_overview.asp

Yo Verity!
If you've never read the adventures of Verity Stob, do yourself
a favour and look in.  She's a (fictional) columnist who
started life in a UK programming mag called .EXE and now writes
for Dr Dobb's Journal.  Well worth a look-in.
http://www.ddj.com/columns/stob

SBS 2K
Microsoft has released the Win2k edition of Small Business
Server.  This is a bundle of Win2k Server, Exchange and Outlook
2000,, SQL Server 2000 and the new ISA firewall.  You also get
FrontPage, and a friendly install wizard.  The whole thing costs
US$1500, which covers installation on 1 server and 5 clients.
Additional clients, up to a total of 50, can be purchased, after
which you have to update to BackOffice Server.
http://www.microsoft.com/sbs

802.11 Cracked
Apparently, the 802.11 wireless LAN protocol, as used by products
such as Apple's Airport, has had its encryption broken and can
now be cracked in real time.  Read all about it here.
http://www.isaac.cs.berkeley.edu/isaac/wep-faq.html

Security Administrator
You can now read the full text of the first edition of
Security Administrator online, free of charge.  Security
Administrator is a printed newsletter - details of how to
subscribe are on the site.
http://www.secadministrator.com

5.  TECH SUPPORT RESOURCES FROM ITP
===================================

Understanding ASPs
Application Service Providers are, they tell us, going
to change the way that we use computers.  But is the world
really heading down a thin client route?  Read the article
in the latest issue of PC Network Advisor to find out
all about what ASPs can, and can't, do for your business.
http://www.pcnetworkadvisor.com

Troubleshooting Word 2000
The current issue of PC Support Advisor includes a detailed
article to help you assist users who are having problems
with MS Word 2000.  Help yourself and your users - check
out the article now, free of charge, on the PCSA site.
http://www.pcsupportadvisor.com

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                  ABOUT SUPPORT ALERT

Support Alert is produced by International Technology
Publishing, the publishers of PC Support Advisor and
PC Network Advisor, the standard resource publications
for tech support professionals.

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