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  1. #1
    5 Star Lounger
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    Best wishes to all who celebrate Thanksgiving




    INTRODUCTION

    Happy holiday to all who celebrate Thanksgiving


    By Tracey Capen

    For many in the U.S., the last week of November is a time of travel, companionship, and a special feast. It's also time for thinking about those things we're thankful for. We at Windows Secrets are especially appreciative of all of you who have supported the newsletter over the years.

    The full text of this column is posted at WindowsSecrets.com/introduction/happy-holiday-to-all-who-celebrate-thanksgiving/ (opens in a new window/tab).

    Columnists typically cannot reply to comments here, but do incorporate the best tips into future columns.
    Last edited by Tracey Capen; 2015-11-25 at 16:13.

  2. #2
    New Lounger
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    hi, i always enjoy your posts...thanks. in regard to dell rootkit yak...i keep a crap list of manufacturers who do things such as dell just did and lenovo before them. i do not deal with any of them on my growing list. they should all know better.
    Dell...root kit on computers
    Vizio Smart TVs track your viewing habits, info is sold to third parties
    Samsung spyware on tvs plus pups on phones
    Lg spyware
    Lenovo spyware and not safe chinese computers
    Comodo adware
    SOHO Routers
    Seagate harddrives...come with rootkits
    volkswagen...software on diesel engines that fake test results.
    winrar - unfixed critical code
    T-mobile - breech

  3. #3
    New Lounger
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    Oooh, poor babies, moving to the country and stuck without high speed.
    I live on the edge of the continent and went from dialup (they called it that because when you emnailed someone you had to dial them up afterwards to see if they got it!) from 1987 to 1995; then got a blazingly fast (1.5 down .6 up) ADSL (the only connection available) for the next 20 years and just last year got a cable (70 down 15 up) connection.
    I am now able to actually download large files and do all those things that I could not before.
    I know well the hell into which you are about to descend and hold little hope for you to be able to survive digitally for very long.
    But good luck, I anticipate a lot of trips to town to get a decent wireless signal.

  4. #4
    New Lounger
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    We too live in the country, only full time and have to make do with very poor internet options. It's been so bad that a group formed to try to remedy the situation and was partially successful when enough citizens got together to bring in a company willing to provide fiber optic service (but at a relative high cost per household). That group found our internet service way below even that of most third-world countries!

    I don't want to be mean, but if enough people like you move in and see the deplorable internet service rural US citizens have to endure, perhaps it will change. We got the run-around for years with the local phone company providing dial-up at about the same monthly rate of their DSL service to customers in more populated areas.

    With all the great minds in this country, surely someone can come up with an affordable solution for rural internet users that really works.

    Don't even mention satellite - they sock it to you cost-wise IF you can even receive a signal, it goes out in windy or rainy or anything but sunny weather and they cut you off if you use more than what they think you should be using even if your usage is below what you pay for!

    Good luck with a solution - we've been fighting the phone company monopoly for over 15 years, cable won't even deign to answer inquiries about putting in service and satellite/wireless is pretty much an expensive joke. If you come up with a good solution that won't break the bank, please share it with the rest of us who are forgotten in the hinterlands!

  5. #5
    New Lounger
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    re: Why your next cell phone should be unlocked By Lincoln Spector

    Several months ago, I got a British unlocked Verizon branded Samsung Galaxy S5 and trimmed my ATT SIM card to fit.

    I had a few issues - couldn't use it as a hot spot, couldn't update it (both required a Verizon connect), couldn't call forward from the phone, and it didn't recognize US area codes without a helper app. Data issues may be related to different frequencies/radio bands used by the two different companies or different countries or both.

    Wanting more features, I recently ordered a replacement unlocked ATT branded Galaxy S5 ($300 on eBay). The only ATT issues I've had is that it asked for a new ATT nano-Sim, although most all functions worked with the old (trimmed) one.

    (For now, I stuck the old one in an Electro-Magnetic Pulse resistant bag -- a coated Mylar, I think, Ziplock style bag -- a Faraday screen, in the event of solar flare or other pulse event -- on the assumption that some cell towers may be sufficiently hardened against such an event -- or, "moving to Verizon" in the near future).

  6. #6
    Lounger
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    I have gone from dialup at a dollar per minute under Dos, to ADSL (ie on a fixed line) with a marvellous 4Mb speed. But sometimes the internet cuts, more usually the speed is variable. Here I am GMT +1 and I get the best connection during the day. The evening is when everyone is online and I think the local setup is saturated. Bad weather means worse phone line. So, how do I cope?
    1. Use send and receive for email, for instance Thunderbird. Pop etc seems to work better than IMAP.
    2. Opera, or at least, the old version 12.17 (last of the real Opera, still good) has a mode where you do not load images. Sometimes helps.
    3. Never try to watch anything streamed. Even BBC newsvideos can be a pain. The solution is usually to use a downloader, and I have three different addons on Firefox.
    4. Build up some local knowledge of when the best times are most likely
    5. Some people know which of their friends have the best ADSL line and arrange to do their big downloads like Windows updates chez their friends. I once even got someone to download it in another country and post me the CD.
    6. For websites, use the WebWhackers. Then I have an online version. Helpful for a few sites
    7. I know young English teachers working in the countryside without even reliable mains power. They use battery speakers, a cheap laptop and they get their material when they go home to a big city at weekends.
    8. I just tried to post. No internet connection. Proved my point, but top marks to this forum that the autosave was frequent enough so I lost nothing.
    9. One last thing, some of us use two systems: ADSL and Internet stick. Our local ISP even sells that as a package so that if one does not work, the other should.

    For me, the most important part of this is email. Thunderbird works well. Also, I set it to notify when I have big files waiting which I can delete or delay as I wish.

  7. #7
    Lounge VIP bobprimak's Avatar
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    Slow ADSL and Streaming

    I live presently with slow ADSL Internet Service, and I can stream most of my favorite TV shows free or for subscriptions prices, through any web browser.

    Using the US television sites, most Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, ChromeOS and Linux users can stream low-quality to medium quality (up to SD resolutions) even over AT&T's slowest-tier DSL services.

    There is hesitation and buffering at these slow speeds, and sometimes the video quality is far from ideal. But streaming can be done from most of the players used by major US TV network sites. They automatically adjust for my bandwidth capacity, and the time of day does influence the quality of streaming. There is no (legitimate) recording and later playback available from these sources.

    Time of day also affects streaming quality, so I do most of my viewing at night or on weekends during off-peak hours. The effects of high network usage aren't as great for DSL or UVerse VDSL as they can be for Comcast or other Cable based ISPs, due to differences in network geometry.

    Downloading is next to impossible over my connection, so streaming through these sites is about the only (legitimate) way to see a missed show.

    I use only terrestrial DTV broadcast signals with Converter Boxes and VCRs, and one channel in our area is not able to broadcast at full power. Its other channel is VHF, which presents other issues. (We are an urban area with buildings between us and the broadcast towers.) So I end up going online rather frequently to stream from that channel.

    iTunes can't be streamed over my ADSL connection, and Hulu Plus barely works for most of its content (in SD quality).

    What all of the players I use have in common is that they use Flash Player and they all object to ad blocking or script blocking of any kind. Ads are often sent live in HD video, which does not stream well at all, thus causing long interruptions and even loss of server contact during program playback. As HD streaming does not work at all, I don't watch movies online, and I don't use Netflix over my Internet Connection.

    Not being a Cable subscriber, I don't have anything to add about On Demand or channel-specific Apps or sites. Again, if only HD content is being offered, I am out of luck.

    I won't go into the tricks which work with pirate video streaming sites. I will only reveal that I can use these sites and their players far better than I can use legitimate sites and apps. The pirates definitely have solved limited bandwidth issues far better than the legitimate streaming sites. My ISP (AT&T ADSL) does not send out warnings about using pirate streaming sites. They probably can track this activity, however. Just a word to the wise.

    Due to recent increases in land line fees, taxes and line maintenance charges, I am finding myself very near the threshold of upgrading to broadband Internet and Phone services (Limited Cable TV comes along for the ride in such upgrades.) The costs just about balance out for me as a household of one with very few phone calls per month. An upgrade would place me with UVerse VDSL, which is not as fast as Comcast (XFinity) but has more reliable speeds during peak usage times. Streaming is about equally good over any true broadband ISP.

    If I did upgrade, I would not worry about speed, but rather the cap of 250 GB/mo imposed currently in my area by AT&T UVerse. That would be a lot of streaming. But we have to factor in the massive updates for Linux and Windows, and my impending need to upgrade two devices from Windows 8.1 to Windows 10 over the next few months. Even normal OS and program updates these days are getting up to multi-Gigabytes per month levels, per device.
    -- Bob Primak --

  8. #8
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    I forgot to mention another key. Offline preparation of forum messages using a clipboard extender and screenshot saver. I could not live without it. Have tried several, and really like Clipmate. This is an essential tool for living with poor internet.

    BTW, I think I do well with just email surfing and some downloading, 10Gb per month for two of us is ample.

  9. #9
    New Lounger
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    If there’s a good wireless ISP in the area and if it’s possible to fish a signal, that’d be the best bet. I came off 5 years on satellite and I won’t be back. Cell service at our location is just about non-existent and wired service isn’t likely to ever be in the picture so when that WISP showed up I was happy to sign on. Been on the WISP for over 5 years, now.

  10. #10
    2 Star Lounger
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    I've had to make several moves over the years. I don't think I could live without broadband. When the real estate agent asks, the "where" preference question, I've often thought, should I say "start where there's fast broadband?

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