Bits & P.C.s: Stuff

This week we’ll cover a number of subjects. First up, the Sasser Worm.

The Sasser Worm has been described as the first virus that did not require a user to do anything except connect to the Internet. Using a security hole that is in Windows NT4, Server 2000 and 2003, as well as Windows XP, the virus would silently install itself onto your computer. It was not necessary for you to visit a Web page, open an attachment to an e-mail, or any of the other common ways of distributing a virus; all you had to do was to be running one of the vulnerable operating systems, and the worm would find you.

The biggest problem that was caused is that the computer would suddenly announce that it was shutting down, and a minute later the computer would shut off. Since you have such a short time to do anything with the computer, it is difficult to clean the infection from your system. Microsoft, the anti-virus companies, have released cleaner programs to help remove the worm from your computer.

When you think of high-tech, I’m sure you don’t usually think of a grocery store. In the future, you may want to take a look at Aldi. If you aren’t aware of it, Aldi is a major chain in Europe, much like the “marts” in this country.

Every month or so, they will offer “special purchases” in their U.S. stores. They have offered desktop and notebook computers, joysticks, keyboards and mice, as well as TVs, DVD players, recorders, and other electronics.

They recently were selling a 5 mega-pixel digital camera that offered a 3X optical, 2X digital zoom, 16 MB of internal memory, a case, rechargeable batteries, a charger, as well as a 128 MB memory card, all for $220. They do not carry these items all the time, and many times they sell out within a day or two. But they all appear to be of high quality and carry a full warranty/guarantee.

A while back, I mentioned that many old TV shows were now available on DVD. New this week is season two of The West Wing as well as Starship Voyager. In the classic movie line is the second collection of The Adventures of Ma & Pa Kettle. Even the final episode of Friends is out on DVD.

Also, for those of you who enjoy graphic adventures, Syberia II has been released. This sequel picks up the story of Kate Walker where it left off in the original Syberia. These games feature gorgeous graphics, a good story line, as well as having puzzles to test your skill throughout the game. There is no violence, and they offer many hours of playtime for about $30 per game.

And finally, the Internet was used to bring us a live video feed from Iraq of U.S. citizen Nick Berg being decapitated. Unfortunately, there are Web sites that will let you view the video just in case you missed it.

Richard Heller is an independent computer specialist who specializes in repairs, installation, upgrades, technical support, Internet sharing, data recovery and diagnostics. If you have any computer or service-related questions, please send them to The Rock River Times, e-mail, or call 243-1162.

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