PC Alert
Pointing you to the information you need to know
Issue 2  –  2nd to 15th November 1998

Welcome to PC Alert.  Our philosophy is simple.  In a world awash with information, we alert you to what PC information is really important.

Every day our staff search the Web and scan computer journals looking for information of interest: the latest service releases, new patches for standard applications, great resource sites on the Internet, recent trends, really useful articles in journals, new virus problems.   Everything we think is important, reliable and accurate, and that IT professionals should know about, goes into PC Alert.

Every two weeks this information is delivered straight to your desk by email, with all references hyper-linked so that you can go straight to the source.

PC Alert is not an abstracting service. It’s an alert service. We simply tell you where the important information is, saving you the tedious job of searching the Internet and wading through the printed press.

Essential Internet

Our list of sites with important new PC information,
helpful resource files and other items of interest.

Firewall-1 "hackable"
Hacker at UK-based consultancy firm says he managed to penetrate the market-leading firewall.  Check Point says that it's not a bug and was fully documented in the manual anyway.
And to avoid being caught out next time, join the mailing list at http://www.checkpoint.com/services/mailing.html

Hard drive installation made easy
DiskGo!, from the people behind Ontrack Disk Manager, claims to make it simple for support staff to install new hard drives or upgrade existing ones.

Corel launches WordPerfect for Linux
And they're giving it away free

Search engine revamped
Yet another place to find what you need on the Internet.  Plus yet another free email service - great for reading those mailing lists if you don't want the messages clogging up your main mailbox.  And Web access means you can read it from any Internet café, if you're travelling.

Picture Taker
A rather handy tool for support staff that takes snapshots of PC configurations.  Need to find out what changed just before the network stopped working? Just compare the 2 snapshots.

NT5 won't have any bugs.  Guaranteed.
How have Microsoft done it?  After the press has been so scathing of the betas?  Simple.  By changing the name of the product to Windows 2000.  It never did WordStar any good...

ImageCast IC3
A rather natty tool for hard disk duplication, cloning, upgrades, software rollouts, OS migration, backups - you name it.

Netscape 4.5 Released
The latest version of the leading browser for IE-haters.  Includes the rather excellent Composer, the HTML editor we use to create PC Alert.

Free Crypto Newsletter
Sign up for Crypto-Gram, the free email newsletter on encryption and security.

Draw 98
Get the latest Draw add-on from Microsoft for Word 97 and Publisher.

Lost your password?
Got a user who's forgotten the password to a protected Word, Excel, 1-2-3 etc file?  Don't despair.  Despite what the software companies tell you, most password protection in off-the-shelf applications is easily crackable.

The Ultimate Internet Directory
Add your company to the list, free of charge.

NT Bug Tracker
The best NT-related mailing list we know of.  Sign up, and read all about those security bugs before Microsoft even gets to hear of them.

NT Tips Site
Need troubleshooting and configuration tips for NT?  They're all here.

And don't forget...
...the NT FAQ, at...

The answer to anything
Got a question?  Ask Jeeves.

Remove that Excel password
A free Excel 5.0 (and above) add-in that removes the password from al already-open spreadsheet without you having to enter the existing password.

Search Engine Watch
The latest list of available search engines, their database sizes, tech spec, current performance figures, financial solvency, and everything else you wanted to know.  AltaVista has the biggest database, apparently - 140,000,000 pages in the index.

Office 97 Service Release 2a
They've fixed the bugs that prevented it installing on some machines.

The latest set of patches for Windows NT4

Yet another security loophole discovered in IE4
You've suffered the security problem, now download the patch

MS Project 98 Service Release 1
Order it on CD.  No, there's no download available.  Must be one heck of a large bug fix.

75 million filez in one place
Looking for a file?  It'z probably here..

Essential Reading

Our pick of the best of the world’s IT press articles.

Head-to-head comparative reviews
450 MHz PCs   Windows Magazine, October 1998   www.winmag.com
5 Web proxy servers PC Magazine, Nov 3 1998 www.pcmag.com
8 colour inkjets   PC Magazine, Nov 3 1998   www.pcmag.com
7 lasers   PC Magazine, Nov 3 1998   www.pcmag.com
5 scanner/printer/copier combo's   PC Magazine, Nov 3 1998   www.pcmag.com
IBM Net.Commerce PRO vs Microsoft Site Server Internet Business, Nov 1998 www.ibizmag.com
Windows NT Terminal Server vs Citrix MetaFrame Internet Business, Nov 1998 www.ibizmag.com
12 Web graphics packages   PC Magazine, Nov 3 1998   www.pcmag.com
5 3D graphics packages   PC Magazine, Nov 3 1998   www.pcmag.com
The top 100 products of '98   Computer Shopper, November 1998   computershopper.com
Monitors   Computer Shopper, November 1998   computershopper.com

Getting bigger by the week
Hard disks are getting faster and larger all the time.  Computer Shopper's November issue reviews the Western Digital Caviar 8.4 GB drive, which offers storage at US$0.03 per MB.

Hard Drive Upgrader
This software product, reviewed in Computer Shopper's November issue, claims to make it easy to upgrade hard drives in users' PCs.

IBM's Rapid Access Keyboard
Microsoft has the Natural Keyboard, now IBM has the Rapid Access model.  No split design, but 14 programmable keys that let you swap between Windows apps, shut down the PC, send common strings, etc etc.  Computer Shopper has the review, and they're impressed.

Grab it!
Digital Video Magazine, October 1998, has reviews of real-time video capture cards from Matrox, Pinnacle and Truevision.

First Look
PC Magazine, in its October 3rd issue, takes an in-depth first look at NetWare 5, including comparisons with NT4.  Plus, a preview of Lotus Organizer 5.0.

The New Lotus Manuscript?
Once upon a time, Lotus launched a word processor specially designed for creating long, complex documents.  Now Trellix claims to do the same for the Web.  Ideal for creating electronic versions of your annual report, says its maker.  Let's hope it fares better than Manuscript, which bombed.  Horribly.

Learn SQL 7, and how to understand email headers.

The Great Tech Support Survey
Windows International, October 1998, has the results of a major survey into which PC vendors provide the best technical support.

Windows 98's Best Tools
Windows International, October 1998, has details, plus tutorials, on what the magazine considers to be the 10 most useful system tools that ship with Windows 98.

Java-enabled databases
Want to do a Java front end to an Oracle, Informix or Sybase system?  Component Strategies magazine, October 1998, tells you how.

NT Speed-up Tips
Also in Windows International, October 1998, an in-depth feature on how to run a Windows NT server for speed.

And there's more
PC Computing, November 1998, also offers tips on how to speed up an NT system.

Windows NT Security Issue
Windows NT Magazine, in its October issue, concentrates on security.  Thorough explanations of how to ensure security under NT Server, Exchange, proxy servers.

NT Server Performance Monitoring
Also in Windows NT Magazine's October issue, how to use datalog.exe and monitor.exe to monitor an NT system's performance.

Remote NT Admin
Windows NT Systems Magazine, in its November issue, includes a useful feature on how to do remote admin of an NT server.  So you don't need to be at your desk all the time.

New to NT 5
The November issue of Microsoft System Journal includes a comprehensive look at the new features of the NTFS filing system under NT5.  Plus, TAPI 3.0 reviewed.

About PC Alert

For subscription details contact ITP at any of our international offices as listed below, or email pcalert@itp-journals.com.

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ITP also publishes PC Support Advisor and PC Network Advisor, the definitive monthly magazines for all IT support professionals.  For details, subscription information and sample issues, contact us at one of the addresses above or check out our home site at  http://www.itp-journals.com

Compilation copyright © International Technology Publishing Pty Ltd 1998.