Two-Factor Authentication: Who Has It and How to Set It Up

he 2014 Heartbleed bug exposed millions of internet logins to scammers thanks to one itty-bitty piece of code, and our security nightmares have only gotten worse in the years since.

What’s the average internet user to do? Well, you should definitely change your passwords regularly. They’re a pretty laughable method of authentication and can be scooped up pretty easily by a variety of methods.

What you really need is a second way to verify yourself. That’s why many internet services, a number of which have felt the pinch of being hacked or breached, offer two-factor authentication. It’s sometimes called 2FA, or used interchangeably with the terms “two-step” and “verification” depending on the marketing.

As PCMag’s lead security analyst Neil J. Rubenking puts it, “there are three generally recognized factors for authentication: something you know (such as a password), something you have (such as a hardware token or cell phone), and something you are (such as your fingerprint). Two-factor means the system is using two of these options.”

Biometric scanners for fingerprints and retinas or faces are on the upswing thanks to innovations such as Apple’s Face ID and Windows Hello. But in most cases, the extra authentication is simply a numeric code; a few digits sent to your phone, which can only be used once.

You can get that code via text message or a specialized smartphone app called an “authenticator.” Once linked to your accounts, the app displays a constantly rotating set of codes to utilize whenever needed—it doesn’t even require a internet connection. The leader in this area is Google Authenticator (Android, iOS). Others such as Twilio Authy, Duo Mobile,  and LastPass Authenticator all do the same thing on mobile and some desktop platforms. In fact, the majority of popular password managers all offer 2FA authentication by default.

The codes provided by authenticator apps sync across your accounts, so you can scan a QR code on a phone and get your six-digit access code on your browser, if supported.

Be aware that setting up 2FA can actually break access within some older services. In such cases you must rely on app passwords—a password you generate on the main website to use with a specific app (such as Xbox Live). You’ll see app passwords as an option with Facebook, Twitter, Microsoft, Yahoo, Evernote, and others—all of which either are used as third-party logins or have functions you can access from within other services. The need for app passwords is, thankfully, dwindling with the passage of time.

Remember this as you panic over how hard this all sounds: being secure isn’t easy. The bad guys count on you being lax in protecting yourself. Implementing 2FA will mean it takes a little longer to log in each time on a new device, but it’s worth it in the long run to avoid serious theft, be it of your identity, data, or money.

The following is not an exhaustive list of services with 2FA ability, but we cover the major services everyone tends to use, and walk you through the setup. Activate 2FA on all of these and you’ll be more secure than ever.

Amazon Two-Step Verification

Amazon added 2FA support late in 2015 and it’s pretty important to turn on, as Amazon has its fingers in many pies, like Comixology, Audible.com, and sites that use Amazon for payments—all tied to your credit card.

Open up Amazon.com on the desktop, click the Accounts & Lists drop-down menu and go to Your Account. Click on Login & Security. On the next page, click Edit next to Two-Step Verification (2SV) Settings. The preferred method is an authentication app (scan the QR code); phone number(s) are the backup method.

A nice option with Amazon is the ability to tell the service to skip the codes on select devices (or on multiple browsers on the same device)—say a PC to which you and you alone have access. If that option doesn’t work later, come back to the Advanced Security page and click Require codes on all devices.

Apple Two-Factor Authentication

Your Apple ID is a big part of your life if you’re an iOS or Mac user. It’s important for not just access, but also storage via iCloud; purchases like movies, books, and apps; and memberships like Apple Music and Apple TV+.

To activate two-factor Authentication, go to the Manage Your Apple ID page and sign in. Look for Security > Two-Factor Authentication and click “Get Started…”

You are then furnished with steps on how to set up 2FA for Apple using either iOS or macOS. You can’t do it via a browser on another operating system anymore. On iOS you go to Settings > [your name at the top] > Password & Security > Turn on Two-Factor Authentication. On macOS go to > System Preferences > iCloud, sign in, click Account Details > Security > Turn on Two-Factor Authentication.

You’ll have to answer two of your three pre-set security questions and re-confirm your credit card on the account to get into the setup. Then you have to enter a valid phone number to get a text or phone call (even if it’s the number already on the phone you’re using for setup). If it is the same phone, the six-digit code will be entered automatically when it arrives, or just type it in.

After that, signing into anything with the Apple ID should generate a code on the device used for setup. Apple also supports app-specific passwords.

Note that once Apple 2FA is activated for two weeks, you can’t turn it off. “Certain features in the latest versions of iOS and macOS require this extra level of security, which is designed to protect your information,” Apple says.

Dashlane Two-Factor Authentication

A password manager favorite, Dashlane also supports 2FA. You have to turn it on via the desktop using the software for Windows or macOS, and you’ll need a separate authenticator app on your smartphone to scan the QR code.

In the desktop program, click Tools > Preferences > Security tab. Then open the Two-Factor Authentication tab. Click Two-Factor Authentication to toggle it on. You get a prompt to download Google Auth, Duo Mobile, or Authy. You then get the standard QR code to scan. If you have an external U2F security key, Dashlane also supports that.

You can also get 2FA support for other password managers like RoboForm Everywhere and Keeper Password Manager & Vault.

Dropbox Two-Step Verification

Dropbox on the desktop website has a tab called Security. It’s where you go to check how many current sessions are logged in and devices are using the account, to change the password, and, of course, turn on two-step verification. Toggle it to on, enter a password, and you’ll be asked if you want to get security codes via SMS text message or via a mobile authenticator app.

If you choose text, enter a phone number and receive a code immediately. You also get to enter a backup number, plus receive a 16-digit number you should save somewhere safe; it will allow you to deactivate two-step verification if needed. If you choose the authenticator app, you’ll see a QR code on-screen to scan. Other options include the use of a USB or NFC security key, if you’ve got one. Dropbox provides excellent instructions.

Facebook Two-Factor Authentication

Facebook is the last place you want to lose control of an account; its version of two-factor authentication will help prevent that. On the desktop you access it by going to Settings > Security and Login.

Under Two-Factor Authenticationclick Edit on the right. On the next screen, select how you’d like to receive your second form of authentication: a text message, authenticator app, or physical security key.

If you select an authenticator app (which might be the best option when it comes to Facebook), Facebook will produce a QR code on the desktop screen. Open your authenticator app on your smartphone, select add, and hold your smartphone up to the computer screen to capture the code. The next time you sign into Facebook and it requests your six-digit code, open the authenticator app to retrieve it.

For apps that don’t work with two-factor authentication when you log in with your Facebook credentials, Facebook offers App Passwords, a one-time password to access your Facebook account via any third-party app or service. If you log out of that app or service and need to go back in, you’ll have to generate a new, unique app password. This is necessary for older devices. Get them via Settings > Security and Logins > App passwords.

The above options require you to have access to your phone, of course. But when you activate 2FA, you can get a list of 10 recovery codes to download and use at any time, even if you don’t have your phone. Get them in the 2FA settings area and save them somewhere safe.

Facebook also supports the Universal 2nd Factor (U2F) of a hardware security key, something you plug into or put near your computer to get access.

Google 2-Step Verification

With access to your credit card (for shopping on Google Play), important messages and documents, your smart home devices, and even your videos on YouTube—essentially your whole life—a Google account has to be well-protected. Thankfully, the company has been working on 2FA systems since 2010.

Google calls its system 2-Step Verification. It’s all about identifying you via phone. When you enter a password to access your Google account for almost any service, if 2-Step Verification is on, there are multiple options to get that second step. First among them now: the Google Prompt. You simply add your smartphone to your account, make sure the Google search app is on the phone, and at login, you can go to the phone and simply acknowledge with a tap that you are the one signing in. Easy.

If that doesn’t work, you’ll need to enter an extra code. That code is sent to your phone via SMS text, a voice call, or by using an authenticator app. On your personal account, opt to register your computer so you don’t have to enter a code during every sign-in. If you have a G Suite account for business, opt to only receive a code every 30 days.

Google Authenticator—or any authenticator app—can generate the verification code for you, even if your smartphone is not connected to the internet. You must sign up for 2-Step Verification before you can use it. The app will scan a QR code on the desktop screen to give you access, then generate a time-based or counter-based code for you to type in. It replaces getting the code via text, voice calls, or email.

Once you’ve set up Google 2-Step Verification, access it again by visiting your Google account security settings. There you can select the phone numbers that can receive codes, switch to using an authenticator app, and access 10 unused codes that can be printed to take with you for emergencies (such as if your phone dies and you can’t get to the authenticator app.) This is also where you generate app-specific passwords.

People with particularly high-risk jobs should consider using Google’s Advanced Protection Program.

LinkedIn Two-Step Verification

Business social network LinkedIn makes it easy to set up verification, either by SMS texts or authentication app. Go to the Me menu > Settings & Privacy > Account > Two-step verification to activate it or deactivate.

You’ll immediately get a six-digit code you have to enter to verify you’re you. You only get one phone number (no backup). You can also go here to get recovery codes that let you access the account even if you don’t have access to your phone.

Microsoft Two-Step Verification

Microsoft has tied together most its services under one umbrella. Outlook.com, OneDrive, Xbox Live, Skype, an Office 365 Home subscription, and much more can all use the same account. Naturally, it should get some extra protection.

Sign into your Microsoft account at account.microsoft.com/profile. In the top navigation, click Security; on the next page, click More security options. Two-step Verification is the second option. Microsoft will suggest you get app passwords as needed for older service or devices (like Xbox 360); go in later to generate one as needed.

Enter the Set up an identity verification app section. Microsoft makes its own authentication app (iOS, Android), which it will push you to install. It also works with other standard authenticator apps, like Google Authenticator and Authy—but to use them, you must pick “other” during the setup. Scan the QR code displayed.

You can skip the authenticator. If you do, Microsoft will still try to get you to use an app, but it does provide a link to a 7-digit verification code via text or email. If you choose text, it has to go to a phone you’ve pre-registered, and even then, Microsoft will make you re-enter the last four digits of the phone number as confirmation.

As you continue the setup, Microsoft provides a recovery code for you to write down and keep safe, a 25-digit whopper (like the kind it uses on everything from software registrations to Xbox giveaways). Microsoft also supports Trusted Devices, which is hardware that doesn’t require you to enter any codes—you’ll see a checkbox to mark a device (like a Windows 10 PC) as trusted when you log into it. Go back to security settings to revoke trusted devices all at once if you lose one. Microsoft automatically removes any trusted device you haven’t logged into in two months; just trust it again on the next login.

PayPal 2-Step Verification

As a service dedicated to making payments, it’s best that PayPal be as secure as possible. Log in, click your name in the upper-right to access your Profile Settings > Login and security. Click “Set up” next to 2-step verification. Select whether you want to receive a text message or code via an authenticator app or using a security key. With that set up, PayPal will give you the option to add a backup to your account, such as a different number or authenticator app, for when you can’t reach your phone.

Twitter Two-Factor Authentication

To activate Login Verification on Twitter.com on the desktop, click the More menu on the left and select Settings & Privacy > Account > Security > Two-Factor Authentication. You can then choose to get codes via phone (SMS text), authentication app, or with a physical security key (which won’t do you much good on a mobile app, so be sure to set up the authentication app). In the mobile Twitter app, the steps are much the same but you start by clicking on your profile pic.

Twitter will generate backup codes for when you lose a device, and temporary passwords to use one time when logging in at services/places/times you also can’t get a regular 2FA code.

You can also use the Twitter app itself as an authentication app. Click Login code generator to get a six-digit number that updates every 30 seconds, which can help when signing into third-party sites with your Twitter credentials.

A good rule of thumb: occasionally view the full list of applications that have access to your Twitter or that use your Twitter credentials and nix any you no longer use or recognize.

Well, I hope this helps? I want to thank the folks at PC Mag. for the info!

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Back to doing Computer Tune-ups & Fixes and Upgrades

I am keeping it simple! Need help! email me @mikescomputersdenver@gmail.com
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Microsoft is killing off Windows Live Mail – what should I do?

Microsoft has announced its email program will stop working with services including Hotmail, Live Mail, MSN Mail and Outlook.com

I have used Windows Live mail since its introduction: it’s simple, clear and uncluttered. Now Microsoft is going to end it. Help! With its automatic sign-in, I haven’t used my passwords in years. How can I transfer my accounts?

Windows Live Mail is a desktop email program Microsoft introduced to replace Outlook Express. It is part of the Windows essentials suite, which includes several fine programs: Live Mail, Live Writer, Photo Gallery, MovieMaker and OneDrive. (It used to include Messenger, which was replaced by Skype.) Unfortunately, the suite has not been updated since 2012, because Microsoft switched to developing securely sandboxed, touch-oriented apps instead.

Windows Live Mail 2012 will not stop working, and you can still use it to download emails from any standard email service. However, Microsoft is moving all its own email services – Office 365, Hotmail, Live Mail, MSN Mail, Outlook.com etc – to a single codebase at Outlook.com. Windows Live Mail 2012 does not support the new APIs (applications programming interfaces) required to provide full synchronisation with Outlook.com. Microsoft could update Windows Live Mail 2012, but instead, it has asked users to switch to a different email program.

Microsoft suggests …

Microsoft suggests using either its free Mail app or Outlook, the email and personal information manager that is part of Microsoft Office. Outlook costs money, but Microsoft is offering Live Mail users a free subscription to Office 365 for one year. (You should have received this offer by email, but if not, the details are online.)

The obvious catch is that, after the first year, you’d be paying £59.99 per year for Office 365 Personal, though this does include full copies of Microsoft Office programs plus a 1TB free online storage. Alternatively, you could buy a standalone copy of Microsoft Office Home and Business 2016 (£164) or Microsoft Office Outlook 2016 instead. These don’t expire.

Either way, it is a slightly awkward choice: you can upgrade to Outlook or downgrade to Mail, but you can’t stay at the same level.

The Mail app is simpler but less powerful than Windows Live Mail: it has limited options for sorting emails, and it cannot send emails to groups. Outlook is far more powerful than Windows Live Mail and has more advanced features for emails, contacts, calendars and to-do lists. However, you may not need them, or you may already be using a range of apps instead.

The Mail app has another drawback: it runs on Windows 8/8.1/10, but not on Windows XP/Vista/7. Some people who want to use the Mail app will have to upgrade to Windows 10 to get it.

Read more

Microsoft’s final suggestion is to do your email in a web browser. Your email address and your Hotmail/Live/Outlook.com email service will continue to work, even if Windows Live Mail 2012 doesn’t. Of course, web-based email has similar drawbacks as the Mail app – fewer features and limited sorting options – and is slower to use, but today it’s probably how most people do email.

Sticking with Windows Live Mail

Windows Live Mail 2012 is clearly on the way out, but you can still use it if you really want to. To do this, you must create a new account for your existing email address, but check the box that says “Manually configure server settings”. For the incoming server, select IMAP with the address imap-mail.outlook.com and Port 993. For the outgoing server, use smtp-mail.outlook.com and Port 587.

Live Mail grab

Facebook Twitter Pinterest WLM server settings Photograph: Jack Schofield/Screengrab

The settings shown in the screenshot worked perfectly for one of my old Hotmail accounts even though Windows Live Mail didn’t work with the automatic settings.

Once you have downloaded your emails using the new settings, you can use the mouse to drag-and-drop emails across from the “old” Microsoft account, but don’t delete it. Your “new” account only does email, so you will lose the address book/contacts and calendar features.

Switching clients

If you decide to switch to the Mail app or Microsoft Office Outlook, then you will need to import your emails from Windows Live Mail. There are lots of ways to do this, and Microsoft provided reasonably clear instructions along with the announcement: Windows Live Mail 2012 will not connect to Outlook.com

Windows Live Mail actually stores individual emails in industry standard .eml files, so they’re easy to back up and move between programs or between PCs. (Microsoft Office Outlook, by contrast, stores everything in one giant blob of a .pst file.)

One problem: some users may have emails stored on their PCs that are no longer on the server. In that case, see “Special instructions for users of locally stored data in Windows Live Mail 2012 application” on the same page.

Of course, rather than switching to the Mail app or Microsoft Office Outlook you could switch to an alternative from a third-party supplier. Examples include Mailbird, eM Client, and Thunderbird. I’d try them in that order and see which one you like. Both Mailbird and eM Client are “freemium” programs, while Thunderbird is open source and free.

Thank You The Guardian

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UPDATE:

  Things have finally calmed down, Mom is a little better however she still cannot drive. 

My Breathing is a little worse, Pain level is there? I am terribly bored. So back to work. I am going to keep it simple and will only be doing Repairs, Tune-ups, and Upgrades if needed. More important is I need to work for my sake and a few extra bucks would not hurt me. 

So if your computer is running slow or just crappie give me a call or email me at:

           Web Site:                        mikes-Computers.org

           Email:                              markfifty5@gmail.com

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Mikes Computers News!

To all my friends & Customers;

First of all I would like to thank all of you for your trust and business, more importantly your friendship.

Going on 18 years, Mikes Computers has given computer care for several business, schools and homes. It has been my honor to service the Denver Metro Area. My success has been due to God, sobriety, honesty & trust. I hope I have given good personal service to all my family, friends & customers!

As most of you know, the last 6 yrs. for me and Mikes Computers have been a real challenge due to my medical problems, plus my Mom has been very ill also, she has almost died several times during this period. So I have been taking care of her, as she also takes care of me!  I lost my sister to cancer during this time frame plus my best friend Ronnie, then his brother, then his mother! So it’s been tough 6 yrs. Not counting the other family and friends I have lost during this period.  My physical abilities have dwindled, (I have prepared for that) what I have not prepared for is my memory?

That is my main problem right now, my breathing is rougher and my pain level is out the door most of the time, but not being able to remember short term stuff is really effecting me and my ability to function as a human let alone a computer Tech?

So starting in May, Mikes Computers will start closing, I have lots of parts and spare computers I need to put together and sell. I do plan on having a massive Computer Parts Garage Sale this summer.

Now I am not closing completely, but what I have to do is slow down and simplify my life. I love fixing & building computers, plus the people I have meant have been just awesome! I love People, You my customers have been great! God blessed me with the best customers on the planet.  He blessed me with the ability to fix and build computers this also includes Macs and other devices. I have really surprised myself with this ability. Thank You God!!!

So, the next few months that is what I will be doing is cleaning and getting rid of a lot of my stuff. I have 17 yrs. of computer parts to deal with. I don’t want my family to have to deal with it when I am gone? So if you are interested in parts or no someone who might be? I will give a hell of a deal to a guy like me starting out in the business!

 

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Computer Problems or need a new computer!

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10 Tips to Speed Up Windows 10

How to Speed up Windows 10

As PC hardware continues to get faster, so does software, and Windows 10 is no exception. This is especially true of startup time: If you upgrade from Windows 7 or earlier, you’ll be pleasantly surprised by how fast your machine is ready for action. But there are other performance factors to consider after you’re up and running. We’ve compiled ten tips, many of which are perennial old standbys in the Windows performance game.

The problem with many Windows speedup stories is that they tell you to turn off some of the operating system’s more charming features such as visual animations. Most of the tips here show you ways you can speed up your Windows 10 system without compromising its appearance and functionality. Most are free, but some involve spending a little cash on software or hardware. For those with older, lower-power machines who want a speed boost but don’t care about extra goodies, a couple of the tips towards the end can boost system performance at the expense of some bells and whistles.

If you have your own tips for speeding up Windows 10, please don’t hesitate to post your suggestions in the comment section below.


1. Uninstall Crapware

1. Uninstall Crapware
That extra preinstalled software installed by PC makers continues to be an issue with new computers. I recently was working with a low-cost Lenovo PC that had nearly 20 so-called helper programs installed, and these would occasionally and unwantedly pop up and interrupt what I was doing on the computer.

Here’s how: Tap on the Start button (by default all the way in the lower-left corner of the display), then on All apps at the bottom, and then simply right-click on the offender and choose Uninstall. This will immediately uninstall. You can also right-click on the Windows logo Start button, and choose the top choice Programs and Features. You can also simply type Programs in the Cortana Ask me anything box next to the Start button.

You can usually find the culprits by sorting the list of installed apps on the name of your PC Maker. When you’ve found junk apps you don’t want, simply select them and click Uninstall. Unfortunately, you can only remove one at a time, so set aside a half hour or so for this project. Don’t forget to take the hatchet to apps you installed yourself but no longer want, and for software you don’t want that was installed alongside software you did want.

Keep in mind, with Windows 10 there are two kinds of applications, traditional desktop ones and modern Windows Store apps. To remove the latter, go to the Settings app’s Apps & Features page. There, you’ll see both kinds of apps, while the good ole Control Panel only includes good ole desktop programs. In either you can sort by size, date installed, or name, or search for a particular app.

The reason this helps performance is that many programs load processes at boot time and take up valuable RAM and CPU cycles. While you’re in the Programs and Features section of Control, you can also click Turn Windows Features On or Off and scan the list to see if there’s anything you don’t use. You might also try software like PCDecrapifier and Revo Uninstaller utilities. For more help on what to remove, read How to Clean Crapware From a New PC.


2. Limit Startup Processes

2. Limit Startup Processes
A lot of programs install side processes that run every time you start your PC, and some of them are not things you need running on your system all the time. Compared with Windows 7, in which you had to run the MSCONFIG utility, Windows 10 (and Windows 8.x before it) gives you a new, easier way to limit what runs at startup—from the updated Task Manager.

The easiest way to invoke the Task Manager is by pressing Ctrl-Shift-Esc. Switch to the Startup tab, and you’ll see all the programs that load at Windows startup. The dialog box even has a column that shows you the Startup impact for each. The Status column shows whether the program is enabled to run at startup or not. You can right-click on any entry to change this status. It’s usually fairly easy to see things you don’t want to run. For example, if you never use iTunes, you probably don’t need iTunesHelper to be running all the time.


3. Clean Up Your Disk

3. Clean Up Your Disk
From the Start menu, type Disk Cleanup. This opens the trusty Disk Cleanup utility that’s been part of Windows for several generations of the OS. Disk Cleanup finds unwanted junk and files such as temporary files, offline Web pages, and installer files on your PC and offers to delete them all at once. You may even find that your Recycle Bin is bulging at the seams: Mine had 1.47GB I didn’t know was there! This will generally only have a noticeable effect on speed if your drive is getting close to full, however. If you don’t have disk defragmentation scheduled regularly, set that up in the Optimize Drives tool, which you can find by typing its name in the Cortana search box next to the Start button. Another great tool for PC cleanup is Iolo System Mechanic 14, our Editors’ Choice for PC tune-up utilities.


4. Add More RAM

4. Add More RAM
Windows 10 isn’t as much of a hog as earlier versions of the OS, but more memory is always a way to speed up PC operations. For a lot of today’s Windows devices, such as the Surface convertible tablets, however, adding RAM isn’t an option. Gaming and business laptops often still allow RAM upgrades, but that’s becoming rarer by the year. The new, slimmer ultrabooks and convertibles are usually fixed. If you still use a desktop tower, this article can show you how to add RAM. The bigger RAM makers’ (Crucial, Kingston, Corsair) websites all offer product finders that show you which type of RAM your PC takes, and prices are pretty reasonable. I found 8GB high-performance DDR3 RAM for under $40 on Newegg.com.


5. Install an SSD Startup Drive

5. Install an SSD Startup Drive
This past year, I installed a solid-state (SSD) startup drive on my home desktop PC, and the result was a remarkable speedup. And not just for Windows startup, but for loading and using demanding applications such as Adobe Photoshop Lightroom. If you use a laptop, this may also be an option. For system speedup, it makes sense to replace your internal startup hard drive, but an external SSD with a USB 3.0 connection can also give you a speed boost in applications that use a lot of storage. For more info, you can check out PCMag’s article, The Best SSDs and How to Buy an SSD, or look through our recent storage reviews.


6. Check for Viruses and Spyware

6. Check for Viruses and Spyware
You can run the built-in Windows Defender or a third-party app to do this, but you’re best served by PCMag security guru Neil Rubenking’s top pick among malware-cleanup programs, Malwarebytes Anti-Malware—it’s free! But don’t forget to use ongoing anti-malware protection, too. Some of the AV products have a lighter footprint on system performance than others, and the lightest of all, according to Rubenking, is Webroot SecureAnywhere AntiVirus$18.99 at Webroot.


7. Change Power Settings to Maximum Performance

7. Change Power Settings to Maximum Performance
Of course, this isn’t a good choice if you want to save electricity, but it could boost your computing. Head to Control Panel / System and Security / Power Options. From here, click on the dropdown arrow on the right side and choose High Performance.


8. Use the Performance Troubleshooter

8. Use the Performance Troubleshooter
In Cortana’s search box next to the Start button, type troubleshooting and under System and Security, you’ll see the choice Check for performance issues. Run the troubleshooter and it may find the root cause of your slowdown. For good measure, run through the other troubleshooters, including System Maintenance, Search and Indexing, Hardware and Sounds, and Programs.


9. Change Appearance in Performance Options Dialog

9. Change Appearance in Performance Options Dialog
You can easily get to this by typing adjust appearance in Cortana. In the dialog, you can use the radio button at the top labeled Adjust for best performance or select which eye-candy features you can live without from the long list of check boxes below these choices. If you do choose the overall best-performance button, you’ll lose all of the visual effects. For example, you won’t see the contents of a window you’re dragging move, but rather just a rectangle representing the window’s edges. Keeping the effects that you enjoy checked in the dialog is probably a better way to go.


10. Turn off Search Indexing

10. Turn Off Search Indexing
Especially for lower-powered PCs, search indexing can eat up system resources, if only temporarily. If you do a lot of searching, this won’t appeal to you, as some searches will be slower. To turn off indexing, open the Indexing Options Control Panel window (you can also just type index in the Start button search box, and you should see Indexing Options at the top of the result list), click Modify and remove locations being indexed and file types, too.

If you want to leave search indexing on, but find that it occasionally slows you down, you can stop its process when you need extra speed. Right-click on Computer either in the Start menu or on the desktop, choose Manage. Then double-click Services and Applications, then Services. Find Windows Search, and double click on that. From this Properties dialog, you can choose a Startup type of Manual or Disabled to have the process silent by default. The new Automatic (Delayed Start) startup type according to Microsoft help, “is preferred over the Automatic startup type because it helps reduce the effect on the system’s overall boot performance.” That was the default on my upgraded Windows 10 PC.

Thank You PC Magazine!
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VETERANS DAY WEEKEND

To Them We Owe

 Happened today, and in the past;
Sacrifice made, for ours to last.

Wives to widows, families torn;
Gave their lives, for them we mourn.

Gone forever, souls are lost;
Freedom comes, with this cost.

Enjoy the life, they did preserve;
Fate they suffered, did not deserve.

On this day, lest we forget;
To them we owe, our life in debt.

by Don Nielsen

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A massive ransomware attack

A massive ransomware attack spread across the globe today, locking up thousands of hospital, telecommunications, and utilities systems in nearly 100 countries. The attack used data stolen from the NSA to exploit vulnerabilities in Microsoft Windows and deliver the WanaCrypt0r ransomware. The demand was for $300 per PC.

While the ransomware was first detected wreaking havoc in emergency rooms and doctors’ offices in the UK, the infection quickly spread worldwide, including to the US.

We’re alerting you to reassure you that if you’re currently using the premium version (or the premium trial) of Malwarebytes with real-time protection turned on, you are protected from this threat. Our premium technology blocks the WanaCrypt0r ransomware before it can encrypt your files. (The free version of Malwarebytes, however, does not protect you against WanaCrypt0r. To see which version you have, open up your Malwarebytes software and look for the version name at the top of the window.) Learn more about Malwarebytes

If you’re not currently using the premium version of Malwarebytes, we recommend that you update your Microsoft Windows software immediately. Microsoft released a patch for this vulnerability in March, but many users haven’t updated, leaving their computers open to this attack.

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