Indiana Jones

matthew's picture

So much for my plans of hacking; I've spent all day so far working on my in-law's computer. Not only did they have the usual Gator, Comet Cursor, and other spyware/adware programs installed, they also were infected by three different virusses. I F-PROT'd their computer, but I still suspect there's something amiss there. Eh, well, I didn't bring any of my software to be able to reinstall.

This seems to be a growing trend; I recently used the Windows XP laptop of a computer-literate (heck, awesome programmer!) friend of mine. I was appalled to find multiple "toolbar" programs installed (spyware deals that change your IE toolbars to gather marketing data), Gator (ugh, I hate that program, the programs that use it should be given the death penalty), and other assorted annoyances. And he thought it was a good, productive PC! This alarming trend towards laziness in personal PC administration appals me as a sysadmin, yet it seems to be the norm. Far more the norm, in fact, than systems that have good pop-up blocking in place, a decent firewall, virus protection, and lack of spyware/adware/malware.

Well, I did my small part. I installed Promoxitron, F-Prot eval version (with a suggestion to buy the full version), and cleaned up a bunch of nastiness on their PC, including manually uninstalling the uninstallable Gator program. They come up with more aliases for that little thing! And then they stick it in your startup folder, registry run keys, and (I've heard) win.ini, though I didn't find it there. Here's hoping their little Win ME install holds together until they can buy a new PC. I keep trying to convince them to go with GNU/Linux, but I haven't verified that Personal Ancestral File runs under Wine yet, and there don't seem to be any free software competitors to PAF3.

This means, though, that I've gotten in no Docbook hacking. Dangit.

Next weblog, I hope to try more "linky" posting...


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matthew's picture

What does Indiana Jones have to do with this?

Heh, the reason the subject of the blog was "Indiana Jones" was because I was watching Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade while writing the blog entry. Fixing my in-laws' computer had taken so long that I'd gone through all three Indy movies while working on it. The computer is positioned so that you can see the TV while using it, and since all the Internet connection speed they are able to get out in their rural area is, at best, a 33.6 modem connection, I had a long time to wait while downloading stuff.

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Matthew P. Barnson