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Technology News, Information and Links

Wireless Internet
What's It all About?

SpeedNet has adapted radio frequency technology to deliver high-speed two-way data feeds between a customer's location and a local SpeedNet tower. The service area is generally 8 to 10 miles around each tower, and requiresminimal line of sight. This means there can someobstructions between your antenna and the top of your local SpeedNet tower but the closer you are to the antennas the more likely you are to be able to get the service even without unobstructed line of sight. SpeedNet customer service and field sales people will assist you in determining service feasibility for your location.

To access the Internet from Quanah with SpeedNet you will install an antenna outside of your home/office, and a special wireless coverter in your building. Ethernet cable then connects your computer through your LAN card or a router for multiple computers. Your antenna is pointed toward the top of your local SpeedNet tower. Once your equipment is installed, you will install the software that enables your PC to send and receive the radio signals that connect you to the Internet.

Payment Terms: Month to Month Residential: Credit Card Only. Quarterly or annual Residential can be made by check. Residential may pay by check but must have Credit Card to secure equipment.

30 day money back guarantee.


SpeedNet Website

If you would like to order service or you have questions regarding SpeedNet Wireles Internet Service please fill out this form. Or you may CALL the QuanahNet offices at 663-6700.

Check here often for the latest information on viruses. Click on links for more information.

THREE EXTENSIONS AN' YER OUT
Okay, class. Here's a little quiz.

If you get an email message with an attached file, should you:
A. Make sure that Windows is showing you file name extensions, so you know what kind of file you're receiving.
B. Contact the sender, make sure he/she intentionally sent you the file, make sure he/she is savvy (and careful!) enough to not send you an infected file, and make sure you really want the file.
C. Save the file to disk and run it through a recently updated virus scanner before opening or running it.
D. All of the above. In that order.

You know the answer.(D) It bears repeating because there's a fiendishly clever email attachment virus (er, trojan) called Sadhound making the rounds. Sadhound arrives attached to a piece of spam - it doesn't replicate itself - and it doesn't do much harm, but I'm concerned that it could be the harbinger of hairier things to come. The Register (http://www.theregister.co.uk/content/56/29137.html ) reports that Sadhound takes advantage of yet another weird "feature" in Outlook.

By now you know that you should never double-click on an email attachment that ends in .exe or .bat or .scr or .vbs or .pif, or any of dozens of other "bad" file name extensions. If you double-click on such a file, Outlook will run it, and you can get clobbered. Fair nuff.

You also no doubt know that you should never double-click on an attachment that ends with two file name extensions, such .doc.scr or .jpg.pif. The first file name extension may look harmless - and if you don't have Windows show you file name extensions, that's all you have to go on - but the second file name extension is the one that controls which program gets run: a .doc.scr file is handled the same way as a .scr file, a .jpg.pif runs like a pif file, and both of those can harbor bad programs.

But what about attachments with three file name extensions? Say, .htm.pif.htm? Ends up that good ol' Outlook (according to The Register) uses the last file name extension to determine which icon it should show for the attachment, but it uses the next-to-last file name extension to determine which program should run the file!

Get that? Your visual cue comes from the third file name extension. But the workin' part is the second file name extension.

One of the files attached to a Sadhound-infected message is called

Missingyou.htm.[spaces]pif.htm

Outlook sees the .htm and puts up the icon for Internet Explorer. But if you double-click on the file, the .pif takes over - and you get zapped.

The lesson: In Outlook, beware of files with three file name extensions.

(Source: Woody's Office Watch - To Subscribe)

 

 

 

Shareware, Freeware, Demos and Open Source
What's it all about?

The internet offers many opportunities to find and own computer programs, games and utilities. Since the early days of computing, way back in the 1980's, a form of distribution called '"shareware"' has been used. Now with the ubiquity of the Internet the concept has evolved into a business. Many programmers create programs but rather than sell them in traditional hard box outlets they sell them over the Internet. The biggest advantage of this means of distribution is that the user is given the opportunity to try the program before it needs to be bought. Now even major program vendors have taken the "try before you buy" approach to marketing.

Shareware
As the name implies these are programs that you can download and freely share with your friends. However, they are not free. Usually the programs have some features that are not usable or they have a time limit in which they will function. After you have tried the program you can pay a registration fee and get a 'key' that opens the program up to full functionality for ever. These fees range from as little as a few dollars to hundreds of dollars. Many are great values.

Freeware
These programs, as the name suggests are totally free. You try it, you like it, you keep it. These are often offered by companies who want to get your attention to offer you upgrades or other programs at additional cost. Sometimes they are offered by programmers who just put them out for use because it makes them feel good and gives them experience in programming. A programmers resume if you will. Sometimes these are offered as 'donationware', try it and if you like it you pay the programmer, or sometimes a charilty, whatever you think the program is worth to you. Many major software companies offer freeware even the huge ones like Microsoft.

Demos
Demos are just that demonstration programs. They do not have full functionality but are intended to give you an opportunity to get a sense of the look, feel and functionality of a program before you buy it.

Open Source
This is growing type of program distribution. Open Source programs are generally major programs that companies or individuals have developed and then rather than copyright the code that makes the program work they put it into the public domain. This allows other programmers to modify, add to and improve the programs as long as their changes are also offered to the public for free. An example of open source is the Linux operating system This program substitues for Windows as the operating system for a computer. Some varieties of Linux are now sold with tech support and additions but the basic program is available for free. Another major open source project is Open Office, a full suite of programs like Microsoft Office and fully compatible with the Microsoft programs file types.

There are many places on the web that offer these types of programs. Here are a few.

Tucows

Media Horizon Freeware

QuanahNet Learning Center

Our new learning center, downtown, was developed as part of the TIF grant. This center is always open to the public as a free computer resource. You can visit and use the programs which range from basic office programs to full fledged computer video editing systems. The center also offers classes on everything from basic computer use to advanced courses on Office programs, Quickbooks, Genealogy and anything else we can find students to attend.

In addition we offer many other business services including printing, faxing, design, website design, computer repair and help with buying a computer.

Check us out!

E-Mail Hoaxes

Hoaxes, we all get them and many of us forward them in good faith that they are real. But 99 times out of 100 they are created by someone who just wants to see how long it takes to make the rounds. The emails take many forms. One of the most common is hoax virus alerts. The most common example currently is "jdbgmgr.exe virus". These warnings advise you of a non-existent virus and tells you to delete a file that is a common windows file. Others fall into the category of urban legend, humor, false warnings or chain letter. A current chain letter, "Stop Terrorism: Boycott Middle Eastern Oil" claims that consumers can avoid lending support to terrorism by boycotting certain brands of gasoline. (Added 10/23/02). These Hoaxes add to the cost of providers by filling up mail servers. Before you pass on this misinformation check to see if it is a common hoax. The links below provide current lists.

Urban Legends and Myths

Virus Myths

Devious Internet Hoaxes - PC World Article

 

If you have any technology questions just email us or drop by the QuanahNet Learning Center and ask one of our tech professionals. If you need help with a computer check out our Services area.


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