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Issue 50 - 16th April 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
Support Alert is sponsored by PC Support Advisor and
PC Network Advisor, the standard reference sources for
Check out the following free tutorials available now
* Understanding TCP/IP
* How to Dual Boot Windows 2000
* Understanding the OSI 7 Layer Model
* The Windows Registry Explained
* How to Create Bootable CDs
* IPv6 Tutorial
Plus dozens more.
FROM THE EDITOR
I'd like to offer an apology.
Underneath these words you'll find a note asking you to send
us details of your favourite Web sites for IT support people.
In recent weeks, the number of Support Alert subscribers has
has been growing in leaps and bounds. At the same time, the
number of top-class site suggestions that we are receiving
has also shot up.
It used to be the case that suggested sites would automatically
be mentioned in the very next Support Alert following the
submission of the suggestion. But we're now receiving far too
many (way, way too many) suggested sites for this to be a
practical proposition. It takes time to sort through the
suggestions, review the sites, and pick our favourites from
those we get told about.
And so, to the apology. Please keep sending in details of
favourite support sites. We love receiving them, and we appreciate
your efforts (and so do all our subscribers). But we're sorry
if it takes a while until we have space to feature the site that
you have told us about. Don't worry - we will get around to
reviewing every site we receive, but it takes time.
Of course, every cloud has a silver lining. All these suggested
sites help to make Support Alert required reading for all
IT support professionals. Because you can be sure that the sites
we feature are not just our own choices, but those of many other
real, practising IT support professionals too.
And now here comes that note I promised...
PS If you've encountered a truly great IT freebie site, let
me know and I'll include it in a future issue.
IN THIS ISSUE
1. TOP SUPPORT SITES
- Compaq's Support Site
- Noises from the Basement
- Linux Best Practices
- Article Archive
- DLL Archive Moved
- Spinrite 5
3. BUGS, SERVICE RELEASES AND PATCHES
- Project Service Pack
- Bug Sightings
- IE 5.x Problem
4. OTHER USEFUL STUFF
- Palm OS Back Door
- New Corel Suite
- Corel Draw 10 Demo
- Office XP Review
5. TECH SUPPORT RESOURCES
- Windows 2000 Networking Q&A
- IT security awareness training
1. TOP SUPPORT SITES
Compaq's Support Site
If you've got any Compaq kit in your company and you're looking
for technical information, downloads, drivers, tools and associated
stuff, check out the official Compaq support site. The company's
marketing people have emailed us to suggest that we check it
out. We did. We were impressed.
Noises from the Basement
This site is a weekly e-zine for Windows and Office users, with
a great collection of tech tips as well as some handy freeware.
Linux Best Practices
TechRepublic has put together a Top 10 list of things to bear
in mind when planning a Linux deployment within your company. If
you're more accustomed to Windows but are seriously considering
defecting, this article will tell you what you need to know.
You'll need to register first, but it's quick and free.
Windows 2000 magazine, which is presumably about to change its name
to Windows XP (after it already had to change from Windows NT!)
has a large collection of past articles online. Read everything
published from September 1995 until 4 months prior to the current
issue. It's all online, and all free.
DLL Archive Moved
In a recent issue of Support Alert we mentioned an online archive
of Windows DLL files. The site has changed location and the original
address no longer exists. Check out the new location if you need
to retrieve a missing or corrupted DLL file.
A new program for Windows NT/2000 called SecureStack claims to be
able to detect buffer overflow problems in any application, thus
eliminating security problems caused by such cases. There's even
a freeware version that you can download and try.
Steve Gibson wrote the original version of Spinrite about 10 years
ago. It altered the interleave on hard disks, often resulting in
a significant speed increase. The program is now up to version 5,
and claims many more features, such as the ability to recover
data from damaged hard disks, regardless of the problem which led
to the damage. Gibson is so confident of Spinrite that he reckons
keeping backups is no longer necessary. We reckon he's being
highly irresponsible in suggesting such things, but Spinrite 5
does still sound impressive. A useful addition to every support
person's toolbox. But hey, Steve, cut down on the hype. Please?
3. BUGS, SERVICE RELEASES AND PATCHES
Project Service Pack
Microsoft has released a service pack for Project 2000. If you're
running MS Project and want all the latest bug fixes, go get this
mega-collection of patches. Alternatively, you'll also find the file
on the PCSA 152 CD-ROM.
Bugnet has published a fascinating collection of recently-discovered
bugs and, even more interestingly, the reactions of the companies
concerned when they received reports from users. It makes fascinating,
and rather disturbing, reading.
IE 5.x Problem
Hackers have found a way, in IE 5.x, to create emails which
automatically open and could thus install a virus. Microsoft has
issued what it calls a critical security update. You'll find full
details of the problem, plus the update, online.
4. OTHER USEFUL STUFF
Palm OS Back Door
It's been reported that there's a back door in every PDA that runs
Palm OS, which could allow anyone to get around the locking facility
in order to retrieve your data.
New Corel Suite
Corel is now shipping WordPerfect Office 2002, with which it hopes
to take on Microsoft's Office XP. Read more about it at Corel's site.
Corel Draw 10 Demo
Want to download a fully-functional 30-day demo copy of Corel Draw
version 10? You can get it from Corel's site, but be warned that
the size of the download is almost 300 MB.
Office XP Review
Remember, the next issue of PCSA will include a full review
of Microsoft Office XP. You can read the complete article now,
free of charge, on the Web.
5. TECH SUPPORT RESOURCES FROM ITP
Windows 2000 Networking Q&A
In the current issue of PC Network Advisor you'll find an article
about how to solve common Windows 2000 networking problems. Even
if you don't subscribe, you can read the article online for free.
IT security awareness training
There's a lot more to effective corporate IT security than installing
a firewall and updating your virus scanner. It's crucial that staff
are trained in basic security awareness so that they can recognise
a virus, a dishonest employee, a fraudulent telephone caller, etc.
Read all about it in the current issue of PC Support Advisor, or
check out the article, free of charge, at the PCSA site.
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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subscription instructions. At the site, you'll also
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Alert's amazing catalogue of the best tech support
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(c) Copyright International Technology Publishing 2001