Posts Tagged ‘Windows’

Are Macs Really More Secure Than PCs?

Wednesday, September 16th, 2009

For years, Apple has claimed that Macs are unassailable to attack, while rebuking Windows as being filled with security holes. Now not only has a Trojan been able to infect Macs and create a botnet, but many famous researchers caution that the Mac’s Operating System is more vulnerable than both Windows or Linux.

There has been a lot of media hype recently about the detection of the world’s first Mac botnet. On downloading a pirated copy of iLife, Mac users found that their machines were corrupted by a Trojan which opens a port on the local connection hosts by acting as a back door.

While addressing the Trojan, Apple claimed that the chances of being infected by this virus is negligible. But the very fact of its existence, and a botnet run by it, proves that Apple’s declaration that Macs are impenetrable to attacks is simply false.

Hackers say that they find Macs less secure than their present Windows equivalent. They say the code quality, in terms of security, is superior in Windows. Apple has fallen behind as far as security is concerned in the last several years.  This is largely because the spotlight has been on Window’s OS but not as much on Mac’s.

The general perception that Macs are invulnerable to attacks is fast changing. On the contrary, more people these days assert that Macs are far easier to exploit than Windows. The steps taken by Windows to ensure that it is harder for an exploit to work are not followed by Mac. This makes hacking into Macs so much easier as one does not have to jump hoops and deal with all the anti-exploit measures that can be found in Windows.

The security aspect also has to do more with the operating system than with the target program. Firefox on Mac is very easy to hack into. The underlying OS does not have built-in anti-exploit patches. Firefox on Windows is another matter altogether, rated one of the most secure browsers across all platforms.

There is another simple explanation as to why Macs are easier to hack into than Windows.  Bugs that pop up on all platforms are mostly the same, but it is very difficult to write an application for Windows. Hence, it is equally difficult to write an exploit for Windows, making hacking Macs comparatively easier.

From the start, Mac has had a UNIX foundation. This is why several years ago Mac was more secure than Windows. But the latest kinds of Trojans can override all the UNIX protections and hence the edge that Mac has held over Windows has been nullified and Macs are now inherently less secure than the latest versions of Windows.

There is also the belief that Apple’s polished reputation has little to do with its hardware, but is all because of excellent marketing. It may be that the legend of the Mac’s superior security is more about marketing genius and less about actual facts.

So for those in the Mac community who are still under the impression that the Mac is invincible: Sorry to break it to you but that is a thing of the past.

You can find more great articles, resources and free downloads for the Mac at Macintosh Tools.

Macintosh Tools has the latest articles, resources, software and tools for your Mac.

10 Cool AppleScripts You Should Try

Wednesday, June 3rd, 2009

The scripting language built in to the Mac’s OS is referred to as AppleScript. It uses an English-based language to automate tasks on the Mac. AppleScripts are located in your Library/Scripts folder and the Script Editor can be launched by double-clicking a script where it describes what the script does and you can run it by clicking Run.

Here is a list of 10 cool AppleScripts that you should try.

1. Add to Folder Names

With Add To Folder Names you can add something at the beginning or end of all folder names on the front-most Finder window. Items on the desktop will be used by the script, if no Finder windows are open. This saves a lot of time as you don’t have to go through a large group of folders one by one just to add something to the folder name.

2. Add to File Names

Similarly, Add To File Names changes files in the front Finder window, instead of folders.

3. Trim Folder Names

The next two scripts are the opposite of the two mentioned above. Trim Folder Names lets one trim the text from the beginning or the end of a folder. This helps in altering the folder names that you want to change or shorten.

4. Trim File Names

Trim File Names is similar to Trim Folder Names, except that instead of folder names, this can cut the start or end of file names.

5. Finder Windows- Hide All

All the Finder windows that are open can be minimized into the dock by using the Finder Windows – Hide All script.

6. Finder Windows-Show All

Finder Windows – Show All will do the exact opposite, and bring all Finder windows that are in the Dock back out onto the Desktop.

7. Crazy Message Text

On running Crazy Message Text, a dialog asks the user to type the text to create the “crazy” mail message with. After entering text and on hitting OK, a Mail message is created, on which the text is pasted with each letter in a different size, font and colour.

8. Create New Message

The Create New Message Script is useful to browse the Web or RSS feeds. It lets you make a Mail message from whatever application you’re in at the moment. A small dialog asks the receiver’s name, address, the subject, content, signature, and the “from” address. After clicking OK, Mail opens and the message that you entered can be sent.

9. iTunes Remote Control

The iTunes Remote Control is the perfect substitute for an iTunes controller. On running the script, a dialog pops up and you can make iTunes “pause”, “play,” or “stop” among other commands.

10. Clipboard Viewer

The Clipboard Viewer script shows a dialog with whatever is on the clipboard. If you have a file copied, the filename will be displayed.

The Scripts folder contains tons of other cool Applescripts. And what’s more, You can even customize or even write your own AppleScripts!

For more Macintosh articles, resources, tools and downloads visit Macintosh Tools

Transferring Music From IPod to PC

Tuesday, February 24th, 2009

Did your computer crash and all your music is only on your iPod? Do you want to transfer all of your MP3’s from your iPod to a new PC, or use your iPod to transfer some songs to your work computer? You don’t need to purchase special software as some people will lead you to believe. If you have Microsoft Windows, iTunes, and an iPod (set to show up as a removable drive); That’s all you need! I’m going to walk you through the steps needed to do this.

Set Windows to show hidden files

Right click on your [START] button and select “explore”. Click on [Tools] at the top, then “Folder Options…”. This will bring you to a windows with customizable folder options. At the top, click the “View” Tab then scroll down halfway. Click on “Show hidden files and folders” and uncheck “Hide extensions for known file types”.

Find songs hidden on your iPod

Plug your iPod into your PC via the USB cable. The iPod should show up as a removable drive (for example purposes, we’ll call it the E: drive). Go to “My Computer” and then press your F3 key to pull up a search sub-window. Choose “All files and folders” if a little dog asks you any questions. Then, fill out the form as shown in Figure3 and click “Search”… This will show you all the MP3’s that are on your iPod. Yes, they have weird names, but the song tags (Title, Artist, Genre, etc) are all still there. iTunes will rename them with their tag information when you import them.

When it is done searching, select them all by pressing “CTRL %2B A” and copy them (right click -> copy) all into a new folder on your desktop (right click on your desktop and select New -> Folder). Copying may take a while depending on how many songs you are moving around. Once they are done copying, go to the next step.

Import the songs using iTunes

Install the latest iTunes if you don’t already have it (refer to the apple documentation), then open iTunes. Immediately, click on [Edit] at the top, then click on Preferences. Once the window pops up, click on the Advanced tab and make sure “Keep iTunes Music folder organized” and “Copy files to iTunes Music folder when adding to library” are selected (VERY IMPORTANT). Then click Ok.

Now you will import all the music you copied. Click on [File] at the top and select “Add Folder to Library”. It will ask you which folder to add. Navigate to your desktop and select the New Folder you created that contains all your music, then click OK.

Relax and let iTunes work

Thats it! As it imports, iTunes will use the tags to rename the songs to the correct information. Don’t forget to delete the New Folder on your desktop when you are done. You no longer need these because iTunes copied them all to its own internal folder in your My Documents -> My Music folder.

Sincerely,
Chris Tolson
CTOLSON1978@tGMAIL.COM

10 Top Reasons Why I Love My Mac Computer!

Tuesday, January 13th, 2009

Are you a PC user running windows? If so, you will readily identify with all the problems that face a PC user – new devices have to be configured, drivers need to be updated, you get visits from the dreaded Blue Screen of Death every so often, you have to install anti-virus, firewalls, and a myriad other packages just to keep your PC running and stable.

PC users spend most of their time troubleshooting and tweaking their PCs to improve performance and maintain them. But life is not like that with a Mac. As Mac users are fond of saying ‘The Mac just works’! Here are the reasons why I love my Mac:

1. Synergy of Hardware and Software – Unlike a PC where one company makes the hardware and other companies make the software and you are the one who struggles to integrate both, Apple makes both the software and hardware for the Mac which ensures you don’t have any compatibility issues.

2. Truly Plug and Play – When you buy a device for the Mac, you plug it in and that’s it – 99% of the time, you are ready to go. The Mac has drivers for practically all the devices compatible with the Mac and the Operating System (OS) does all the work

3. Great Look and Feel – The look and feel of the Graphic User Interface (GUI) used in the Mac is great – that figures, since Macs were the first computers to have GUI-based interaction using a mouse.

4. Aesthetics – The Macs look good! If this reason seems trivial to you, just look at the clunky computers littering the marketplace and you’ll immediately begin to appreciate the design effort that has gone into making the Mac look good.

5. Mac OSX – The Mac OSX is one of the most advanced Operating Systems available and is based on UNIX. The Mac OS is one of the major reasons why people who switchover to the Mac, Stick to it. The OS just about takes care of itself with updates and most of the housekeeping performed automatically in the background.

6. State of the Art CPU – Mac uses the same Pentium CPU that powers your PC and the speed and other parameters are as good as any PC

7. Intelligent Device Management – Macs are good at detecting the device you connect to them and automatically open the software to be used with the device without any user intervention, even if the device is being connected for the first time.

8. Hassle-free Networking – The Mac can automatically detect wireless networks, freeing you from configuring Wi-fi networks yourself. You can connect the Mac easily to a Local area Network just like any PC.

9. Microsoft Office – If you are comfortable with Microsoft Office and don’t want to change over to another office suite, the Mac can run all components of the MS-Office.

10. Missing Windows? If you like the Mac hardware but still hanker after Windows, you could install windows on the Mac – In fact, like a PC you could run any or multiple OS on the Mac.

Ms. Pinky is a Computer Support Specialist for more than 25 years. Has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Computer Engineering, MS Research work in Systems Engineering.

Get more free computer tips on her blog at http://www.computerhelpdeskandsupport.com/

Two Basic Methods of Downloading and Watching Movies on Your IPhone 3G

Thursday, December 11th, 2008

If you are a movie buff and looking to enjoy your favorite entertainment on the go, downloading movies to your iPhone is the way to go and can put hours of enjoyment into your pocket. Before downloading movies onto your iPhone there are few things you will want to consider. Since there are so many available sites on the Internet for downloading a movie for your iPhone, you want to make certain you go with a reputable site that is legitimate and will not cause you problems with viruses and other malicious elements. You will also want to make certain your virus software is up to date before downloading anything.

Although it is possible to rip movies from DVD, if you would like your movies to be in the correct format (MP4), your best bet is to download them directly from a website like iTunes. The site provides literally hundreds of downloads from every genre for a very reasonable price.

In order to download from the iTunes site and set up your iPhone to watch movies you will need an account with iTunes. The process is similar to downloading to an iPod except the iPhone is a much more powerful version of the iPod.

If you do not mind converting your movie to the MP4 format, you will need to install a DVD to iPhone converter for Windows or Mac. The converter is also really handy for downloading YouTube, MySpace, and Google videos that otherwise rely on the Flash application in order to operate. Since iPhone does not support Flash you will need to convert them to MP4.

Another way to watch movies on your iPhone is to download them directly from sites on the Internet. There are many free sites as well as paid sites; however, many of the free sites also have many viruses permeating the environment so you probably would be better off paying a membership to a legitimate site with a good reputation. Most of the reputable sites will provide lifetime access with your membership and you will not have to worry about the expense of buying a whole new computer.

There is no limit to how many movies you can download, however, the amount you can actually store on your iPhone will depend upon your iPhone’s capacity. Normally, the standard size iPhone capacity ranges from 8G to 16G.

Basically, you are looking for two different methods of downloading and watching movies on your iPhone. You can opt to rip a favorite DVD movie to your computer and then install it on your iPhone 3G or you can choose to download movies to your iPhone 3G from a reliable Internet site.

To get a free Apple iPhone, visit Free Cell Phones. Jonathan Hartman is an avid iPhone user who is always looking for great deals on cell phones.

Apple Computers – Compatibility With Windows Applications

Friday, November 21st, 2008

In the early days there was little compatibility between Apple applications and Microsoft Windows applications. However, much has changed over the years, and many applications can be seamlessly shared between the two operating systems. This is especially true of the Max OS X Tiger which enables not only the sharing of files, but can co-exist peacefully on the same network. Sharing printers, scanners and other peripheral devices between Macs and PCs is now almost a non-issue, while there are still the occasional user who has problems sharing files between PCs and Macs, the difficulties have mostly be resolved. It is expected that within the next few years, there should be problems at all.

Best of all, in today’s highly wired world, where electronic mail is a way of life, now even email can be shared across Mac and PC platforms with minimal fuss. Apple started on the road to compatibility in 2003 when they resumed installing PC Compatible Cards into their systems. This was done in partnership with Dell Computers.

With so many businesses using Microsoft Windows, it was only natural that Apple made their systems compatible so that users could work across platforms. Nowhere is this compatibility more appreciated than in the freelancing world where clients and freelancers need to quickly and efficiently exchange files. The introduction of Intel processors in the current lines of Apple Computers has cemented this compatibility relationship across multiple-platforms.

Prior to this, users of Mac applications had to use third party software, like Stuffit Expander and Conversion Plus, to be able to access and work on files created with Microsoft applications. Also, the current generation of Macs now has Mac compatible Windows application suites which include everyday Windows applications, Word, PowerPoint and Excel. Microsoft Office for Mac can be used between Macs and PCs with no problem.
— By Yina Dong


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