Author Archives: Fred Langa

Fred Langa

About Fred Langa

Fred Langa is senior editor. His LangaList Newsletter merged with Windows Secrets on Nov. 16, 2006. Prior to that, Fred was editor of Byte Magazine (1987 to 1991) and editorial director of CMP Media (1991 to 1996), overseeing Windows Magazine and others.

Three More Winners!

"Mohearn" "acutrona" and "tommyd111" each won a FREE full one-year
subscription to the LangaList Plus! edition by using the "Recommend To A Friend"
form at

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We’re Ba-a-a-a-a-ack…

(Tap tap tap) Is this thing on? Can you hear me down in back? <g>

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How Secure Is Windows Encryption?

Hi Fred. In your newsletter,
James spoke about a workaround he found while having problems dealing with a
restore and the use of the "make files private" function. As I use an NTFS
partition, I have chosen to encrypt the ‘My Documents’ folder for my standard
login on Win2K (Properties/Advanced/Encrypt contents to secure data). The plan
was that even if my PC ended up being stolen, no one would be able to read that
portion of my disk. I ‘double encrypt’ the more sensitive stuff using blowfish
encryption software and a blowfish encryption password safe. However, your
comments about the ability to work around most Windows system security tools has
me concerned. I know that even when I’m logged in as an administrator I can’t
read any of the contents of this folder. Just how secure is the encryption
offered by Windows users who are taking advantage of this option?

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Installing Old Windows Over New

Fred, I have a Dell Dimension 8000
purchased Nov 2004 which had XP Pro pre-installed. Having had a bout of the
dreaded "flashing amber light" Dell sent a technician to my home to replace
various hardware items. Unfortunately the techie installed XP Home on the new
hard drive which I didn’t notice for a few days and though I have received
plenty of advice from Dell and via your site about re-installing XP Pro, having
read the item at Subject dated2005-08-08 on your site. I am loathe to attempt
the process.

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Adware Away— A Good Start

Fred – Just a simple testimonial for "Adware
Away" to remedy very nasty variants of browser hijackers. I have spent hours not
only searching for "geek" sites to get rid of a hijacker, but also additional
hours with all kinds of potential solutions advanced by many experts. I went to
the registry, I went to Windows Services, I went everywhere one might think to
go….trying to figure out what the various "experts" were suggesting. But in
less than 5 minutes after stumbling across "Adware Away" ( ). I now have
a fully restored start page, search page, and home page set once again to MY
preference instead of some nasty adware forced-page. I would recommend it HIGHLY
for those suffering from the absolute plague of many different kinds of
hijackers. It really works and it’s quite simple to use. It’s free for as long
as you need it and, of course, "purchasable" thereafter. Although I have solved
my vexing hijacker issue, I will definitely register and forward them the
purchase price, as I am forever grateful for such a wonderful and easy solution.
Keep up your good work with the Newsletter and wizardry you are so well known
for. —Chris G. Echsner

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“ShellconHiddenWindow” Unmasked

I am a relatively new subscriber to
LangaList. I often get the message "ending the program ShellconHiddenWindow"
when I turn off my computer. I don’t know what this is. I can’t find it
anywhere. Do you have any ideas as to what it

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