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<<>>  Online at http://www.techsupportalert.com   <<>>
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            Issue 43 - 2nd January 2001
    Happy New Year from all of us at Support Alert!

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.

What's the secret?  What is it that thousands of
support staff in 16 countries know, that you don't.

Find out now. Take advantage of our current US$29.95
special promotional offer and try Support Advisor and
Network Advisor for yourself.

Just point your browser to http://www.itp-journals.com
and discover the secret.

               <<<>>><<<>>><<<>>>

FROM THE EDITOR

Have you looked at the prices of PCs recently?  There are some
pretty good bargains out there. Much of the recent crop of
price reductions were of course Christmas specials, designed
to appeal to families buying their first machine.  But
the general trend of PC prices is downwards, so don't believe
everything you read in the adverts.  Just because you didn't
buy before Christmas, the bargains won't have gone away.

It struck me the other day that the price of a PC is now
less than 2 US dollars per MHz.  A 600 MHz machine, fully
specified and complete with monitor, will cost you roughly $1200.
A 1 GHz machine comes in at around $2000.  Cast your mind back to
1981, and the launch of the first IBM PC.  This was a 4.77 MHz
machine.  If my rule of thumb had applied back in 1981, that
original PC would have cost less than 10 dollars.  Actually,
it cost more like 5000.

Technological progress in the past 20 years has been
astonishing. I wonder where we'll be 20 years from now.
 

Robert Schifreen

PS:  Do you have a favourite site that you'd like to
see featured here?  If so, send details to me
at editor@itp-journals.com.

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IN THIS ISSUE

1. TOP SUPPORT SITES
    - All The Web
    - Top Security Site
    - Hacking Exposed

2. SUPPORT UTILITIES
    - Windows 2000 SP2
    - Tidy Up that Remove list
    - Sunbelt Domain Reporter

3. SERVICE RELEASES AND PATCHES
    - Hotmail and Outlook Express Problems
    - Web Form Submission DoS
    - AOL Instant Messenger
    - Windows 2000 Patch

4. OTHER USEFUL STUFF
    - Hard Disk Licences coming soon?
    - CorelDRAW 10
    - MediaBuilder
    - Windows 2000 Admin Info
    - CorelCity

5. TECH SUPPORT RESOURCES
    - Understanding TCP/IP
    - FrontPage 2000 Tips and Tricks

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

All The Web
Looking for information on a specific subject?  One
particular search engine reckons that it has more than 1.5
billion entries in its index, and also holds the full text
of some 575 million documents.  Worth a look, especially as
it claims a response time of around half a second.
http://www.alltheweb.com

Top Security Site
A Support Alert reader recommends this excellent Web site which
contains lots of information on IT security matters, including
bug fixes, virus and trojan alerts, and much more.  We think
it's pretty good too, so why not have a look for yourself?  See
http://www.infosyssec.com.

Hacking Exposed
We happen to think that Hacking Exposed is one of the best
IT security books ever written.  If you need to know how to protect
NT, Win2k, NetWare and Unix systems from attack, get the book.  And
check out the Web site for the book, too, with lots of useful links.
http://www.hackingexposed.com.

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

Windows 2000 SP2
Service Pack 2 for Windows 2000 is shortly to be launched.  A
beta was released recently, but quickly withdrawn.  Details
of the bugs fixed in Win2k SP2 are on the Web at
http://www.wininformant.com/display.asp?ID=3021

Tidy Up that Remove list
How often have you uninstalled a Windows app but the program's
name remains on the Add/Remove Programs list?  Wish there was
a way to prune old entries from the list?  There is now.  Check
out Add/Remove Plus v2.0, at:
http://www.aurelitec.com/software/arplus

Sunbelt Domain Reporter
Domain Reporter, from Sunbelt Software, is a tool for NT and
Win2k that checks the security on your systems and reports
and problems it finds, such as accounts without passwords.
You can download a 30-day eval copy from the company's site at
http://www.sunbelt-software.com/product.cfm?id=866

3. SERVICE RELEASES AND PATCHES
===============================

Hotmail and Outlook Express Problems
The current issue of BugNet includes details on a problem
with Microsoft's Hotmail service.  Specifically, problems
accessing Hotmail messages with Outlook Express.  Plus, you
can also vote for the buggiest apps of 2000!  Check out
http://www.bugnet.com.

Web Form Submission DoS
Microsoft has issued a security patch for IIS 4 and 5 with the
FrontPage Server Extensions, which fixes a potential Denial of
Service hole regarding Web form submission.  The patch brings
to 100 the number of security patches for Windows issued by
Microsoft in 2000.  You can read about it, and download it, at
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/bulletin/ms00-100.asp.

AOL Instant Messenger
Got any users running AOL Instant Messenger?  If so, you need to
be aware of a number of security vulnerabilities which could
allow a user's machine to be taken over remotely.  Check out
http://www.atstake.com/research/advisories/2000/a121200-1.txt.

Windows 2000 Patch
A patch has been issued for Win2kS and Win2kAS which prevents
a problem that could allow a hacker to install and execute
code of his choice.  The problem arises because the "configure
your server" tool creates a blank password for Directory Service
Restore Mode.  You can read more, and get the patch, at
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/bulletin/ms00-099.asp.

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

Hard Disk Licences coming soon?
No, it's not an early April Fool.  Apparently, some organisations
want copy protection built into all hard disks, so that software
can control what we can and can't store on our own computers.
http://www.theregister.co.uk/content/2/15620.html

CorelDRAW 10
Corel is now shipping version 10 of its graphics suite, which
includes CorelDRAW, PhotoPaint and RAVE.  Corel RAVE is a tool
for creating Flash animations for the Web.  Full details at
http://www.corel.com

MediaBuilder
This site is aimed at those who work with graphics, and contains
lots of software and other interesting material.  Plus, there's
a rather clever facility that will instantly create an animated
banner or 3D text button from any text that you type in.
http://www.mediabuilder.com

Windows 2000 Admin Info
If you need information about how to administer Windows 2000
workstations and servers, check out a new book on the subject.
You can read about it, and download the first 3 chapters for free,
at http://www.fastlane.com/windows2000admin/toc.cfm.

CorelCity
Corel has set up its own Internet portal site, with general
news and info as well as Corel-specific material.  If you're
a user of Corel software, check out the new portal at
http://www.corelcity.com.

5.  TECH SUPPORT RESOURCES
==========================

Understanding TCP/IP
If you work with the Internet, you really need to understand
TCP/IP.  The new January issue of PC Network Advisor has a
comprehensive article on the subject.  Even if you're not a
subscriber, you can read the article online for free at
http://www.pcnetworkadvisor.com.

FrontPage 2000 Tips and Tricks
The latest issue of PC Support Advisor has just been published,
and includes a useful collection of tips and tricks for users
of FrontPage 2000.  You can read the article online, free of
charge, at 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.

To subscribe to Support Alert, visit our web site at
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Alert's amazing catalogue of the best tech support
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(c) Copyright International Technology Publishing 2001