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Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Give Away

Id just like to let everyone know today is the last day to get your submissions for the give away in. There is about 12 hours left. If your going to enter please do so as soon as possible. There will be no exceptions for late submissions. Thanks.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Uniblue System Tweaker Free License Giveaway

All you have to do to recieve your license is visit the Uniblue Promotion page here:

http://mag.uniblue.com/pca/st/

Fill out the info and watch for your free license to be delivered in your in box.

Autosave Essentials

Ive never heard of this program until now so I did a little background research. Turns out this software could be a life saver.

Here is a description of what it can do, who can use it, how it works, and a features list.
http://www.avanquest.com/USA/software/autosave-essentials-112304#desc

The most important part of the entire description is:

AutoSave Essentials does what it says, it automatically saves (backs up) your essential files by creating a duplicate copy in the safest place you have specified. Save photos, save videos, save music, save documents, save emails - in fact save anything that is valuable. If you are the person responsible for your family’s memories or your company’s accounts or even general data, it may just save your life. Plus no complications, it is as easy as 1-2-3!

Another very interesting thing about this software that truly sets it apart is that it can detect if your network location is available or if its not and alter the save locations in another available location.

Get Emsisoft Mamutu Free for One Year

In order to get this free license you must be from Germany (or read the rest of this).

First thing you need to do is go to this German Proxy page here:

http://www.german-proxy.de/

Then copy and paste this URL into the German Proxy:

http://www.emsisoft.de/promo/pcgameshardware1012

One the right you will have a green button that says Jetzt Holen. Click that button and fill in your details and watch your inbox for an email with your license for a free year.

You can download Emsisoft Mamutu from here:

http://download2.emsisoft.com/MamutuSetup.exe

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Safe Returner Pro License Giveaway-EXPIRED

In order to gain more readers here and to help out, Safe Returner and I have arranged for ten licenses to Safe Returner Pro to be given away.

The entries must be submitted by Tuesday December 21st, 2010 by 12PM (Midnight) EST (Eastern Standard Time). Anyone can enter into this give away so pass on the word.

The rules are as follows:
  • You must write a review and post it on a forum of your choice.  These reviews will be forwarded to Safe Returner so be honest. Your comments may be used to improve the program.
  • You must reply to this post with a link to your review.
  • You must include an email in the post that the license will be registered for. Without it you wont get your license. 
  • You must sign up for RSS feed updates from PC Babble.
  • Only one entry per person. If you use multiple emails you will automatically be disqualified. 
On Wednesday December 22nd, 2010 is when I will announce the winners.

All qualifying entrants will be entered into http://www.random.org/lists/.

At which point I will randomize the list. Screen shots of the qualifying user names will be posted here. The first contestant through the fifth contestant in the list will be the winners. I will need the emails of the winners to hand out the licenses as the license number is based on the email address so please be sure to include it in your post with your review link.

In the mean time here is a link to Safe Returner's description of Safe Returner and what it can do:

http://www.safereturner.com/features.html

If you wish to trial the software before you enter into the contest you can do so via the download links here:

http://www.safereturner.com/download.html

SpyShelter Premium License Giveaway-EXPIRED

In order to gain more readers here and to help out Spyshelter and I have arranged for five lifetime licenses to Spyshelter Premium to be given away.

The entries must be submitted by Tuesday December 21st, 2010 by 12PM (Midnight) EST (Eastern Standard Time). Anyone can enter into this give away so pass on the word.

The rules are as follows:
  • You must write a review and post it on a forum of your choice.  These reviews will be forwarded to Spyshelter so be honest.Your comments may be used to improve the program.
  • You must reply to this post with a link to your review.
  • You must include an email in the post that the license will be registered for. Without it you wont get your license. 
  • You must sign up for RSS feed updates from PC Babble.
  • Only one entry per person. If you use multiple emails you will automatically be disqualified.
On Wednesday December 22nd, 2010 is when I will announce the winners.

All qualifying entrants will be entered into http://www.random.org/lists/.

At which point I will randomize the list. Screen shots of the qualifying user names will be posted here. The first contestant through the fifth contestant in the list will be the winners. I will need the emails of the winners to hand out the licenses as the license number is based on the email address so please be sure to include it in your post with your review link.

In the mean time here is a link to Spyshelter's description of Spyshelter and what it can do:

http://www.spyshelter.com/description.html

If you wish to trial the software before you enter into the contest you can do so via the download links here:

http://www.spyshelter.com/download.html

The Winners:


HitMan Pro v3.5 License Give Away-EXPIRED

In order to gain more readers here and to help out SurfRight and I have arranged for two licenses of HitMan Pro v3.5 to be given away.

The entries must be submitted by Tuesday December 21st, 2010 by 12PM (Midnight) EST (Eastern Standard Time). Anyone can enter into this give away so pass on the word.

The rules are as follows:
  • You must write a review and post it on a forum of your choice.  These reviews will be forwarded to SurfRight so be honest.
  • You must reply to this post with a link to your review.
  • You must sign up for RSS feed updates from PC Babble.
  • Only one entry per person. If you use multiple emails you will automatically be disqualified.
On Wednesday December 22nd, 2010 is when I will announce the winners.

All qualifying entrants will be entered into http://www.random.org/lists/.

At which point I will randomize the list. Screen shots of the qualifying user names will be posted here. The first contestant and the second contestant in the list will be the winners.

 In the mean time here is a link to SurfRight's description of HitMan Pro and what it can do:

http://www.surfright.nl/en/hitmanpro/

If you wish to trial the software before you enter into the contest you can do so via the download links here:

http://www.surfright.nl/en/downloads/

And the Winners:


Blog Activity and License Give Away

In an attempt to gain more readers, more content, and to liven up the place Im in the process of putting together a license give away with.

Here is a brief overview of what PC Babbles stats look like.


Once details are materialized more will be posted and the give away will begin. While your here be sure to subscribe via RSS to get the latest updates so you dont miss out on the give away.

Spyshelter Update v5.01 and Customer Service

With the release of Spyshelter v5.0 early last week I ran into some issues.

One issue was Spyshelter had a splash screen at bootup that it wasnt supposed to have. After having gone through all of the settings and registry items I contacted support. At this time Spyshelter advised me to uninstall, reboot, and redownload to install again. Sure enough this did the trick only to introduce a new problem.

In the x64 version of Spyshelter in the settings menu. The autostart button would highlight like it was checked, but never checked. However Spyshelter would still start despite not having a start up entry.

After working with Spyshelter support on this issue they had a new release rolled out the next day and notified me via email. Sure enough all was good. So my hats off to Spyshelters dedicated coders and customer service.

With the latest update the layout looks identical to previous versions with a few small tweaks. The items render much faster than before. It still weighs in around 20Mbs running real time so its still very light compared to most other security software on the market today.

For specific pictures of Spyshelters GUI you can consult this post here:

http://pc-babble.blogspot.com/2010/11/spysheler-x64-premium-vs-zemana.html

http://www.spyshelter.com/

Monday, December 6, 2010

Blog Update

In an attempt to attract more readers I have made some slight changes to the blog.

First and foremost. I have updated the favicon to something more suitable for a Windows Tech site.

Second I have added meta tags to the HTML of the site to get indexed in search engines and hopefully gain more exposure.

Third I have added tags to each post also in an attempt to get indexed and gain more hits from search engines.

And finally I have added a nice little piece of HTML to the coding on the site. You can see what I did in the bottom left hand side under each post. It allows you to share a post via email, Blogger, Twitter, Facebook, or Google Buzz with who ever you want.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Spyshelter x64 Premium vs Zemana AntiLogger Testing

I have asked Zemana and Spyshelter to donate a full license for these tests. Spyshelter went ahead and forwarded a license. Zemana did not, but during a Holiday give away I acquired one and tested.

I will be using v4.56 of Spyshelter x64 Premium and the test machine will be Windows 7 x64 Pro. DEP has been turned on for all programs through the Operating System itself and will be on for both tests once I hear back from Zemana.

The settings within Spyshelter are as follows:




The two settings within the Protection tab that are grayed out are not available in Windows x64 versions due to Microsofts PatchGuard so they are not enabled. Id also like to note that the System Protection Module in the x64 enviornment only includes two areaa of protection which are: Registry protection and Driver/service registering protection. In an x86 environment the System Protection Module covers a much wider range of which are: Global Hook Installation, Rootkit Installations, Thread Context Changing, Direct Physical Memory Access, Remote Thread Creation, DLL Code Injection, Kernel Driver Loading, Program State and Memory Modification, System Critical parts and Registry Modification.

By using Windows built in DEP we eliminate the need for memory modification in the x64 environment.

All 47 selections within the list of monitored actions tab are checked.

First up I tested out Zemana's Antilogger Test Tool on Spyshelter. I have displayed what will happen if it is allowed and what will happen if it is denied. The way Zemana's Antilogger Test Tool works is if it is allowed when you type in an external program the data will display in the test tool to simulate the logging of keystrokes. If it is denied and blocked nothing will appear in the test tool.




Notice in the settings only Microsoft signed programs are allowed. Anything other than a Microsoft signed program will be asked to be allowed and denied. This is shown in the prompt at the top where it shows that the Zemana Antilogger Test Tool is digitally signed by Zemana.



I got ahold of a Zemana x64 license. Needless to say Zemana is not even close to comparable.

I configured Zemana the same way I configured Spyshelter. I auto allowed Microsoft signed drivers. Everything else was set to ask. An update was ran before testing to make sure the latest version and whitelist were available and active.

Zemana states that all modules (Key Logger, Screen Logger, Webcam Logger, Clipboard Logger) are all enabled and protecting. However running Spyshelters antitest tool reveals that Zemana doesnt warn about a single test. I am able to log keystrokes, webcam, screenshots, get clipboard copies, gain registry access, and grab sound clips without a single warning from Zemana.

Zemana doesnt even pass its own Clipboard Logger test tool, Keyogger test tool, screenshot test tool, or its own webcam test tool. It makes absolutely no peep what so ever.




Here are the screenshots with Zemana sitting quietly in the tray without warning about Spyshelters test tool.





Here are the images of Zemana failing its own test tools. With the Screen Logger I was able to move the cursor down the task bar with the image previews and the Screen Logger was able to detect the changes in the image previews as well. 



Sunday, November 14, 2010

Bitdefender Antivirus Free on Monday Nov 15

http://store.v3.co.uk/ is offering another giveaway of Bitdefender Antivirus 2010 on Monday November 15. It will be for 1 PC, for 1 year, and you only have a 24 hour window to get your license.

The code will work with the Bitdefender 2011 AV release as well.

New Rating Gadget

I have added a new gadget to the blog. It was provided by http://setrating.com/

By looking at the ratings (thumbs up/down and star ratings) you can see how many people like the site or dislike the site and the rating they give the site out of 5.

To submit a rating just click on the thumbs up/thumbs down and leave a comment, suggestions, etc to help improve the blog. You can also submit a rating for the 5 star scale and leave comments there as well. Comments can only be seen by submitting a rating.

Dont hesitate to use both.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

F Secure Antivirus 2011 Review

Recently I scored a free one year license to F Secure Antivirus 2011. I have had no experience with this antivirus up until now. So I decided to look at some testing. They use Bitdefenders virus database with an in-house heuristics engine called DeepGuard.

Currently they have scored a VB100 award for their 2011 AV which is good.

Going through AVC is more appealing. On AVC's false alarms report only two alarms were reported. They did great in the Performance test which is also a bonus with them placing in the top 5. The removal test is a little outdated with F Secure AV2010, but they still had good removal of malware and average removal of leftovers.

AVTest.org hasnt tested the new AV yet, however they did test the 2010 Suite. AVTest.org shows some less than stellar scores to start out, but F Secure redeemed themselves and improved.



These tests certainly show that F Secure is a very good product and is improving.

Here is a list maintained at F Secure that covers the awards that they have received:

http://www.f-secure.com/en_US/about-us/awards-reviews/2010/

On my system F Secure is rather light weighing in at just under 50Mbs. Even more important than system resource usage is how it actually feels. I personally experience very little lag during startup and during every day operations, which consist of web browsing, checking email through eMClient, Office 2007 suite usage, and gaming.

When I first installed F Secure AV along side Look N Stop Firewall and PrevX SafeOnline (SOL) I was experiencing DeepGuard notifications for PrevX even though I had allowed it through F Secure. I sent out an email to F Secure and PrevX a few days ago and today the issue seems to have been fixed. Nothing is better than top notch detection rates and top notch customer service. Now on to the screenshots.








Tuesday, August 31, 2010

AVG Antivirus v9 Review

Today V3 had a give away where users could apply for a 1 year license for AVG Antivirus v9 for free.

I took advantage of that deal. Who wouldnt pass up a paid AV solution for free?

First thing I notice is that it has an extremely clean interface. All of the different components are arranged in a central panel with click able images and descriptions.



The scan tab is also the same way.



The options pane is rather large. AVG Antivirus has loads of configuration options.



One thing that you will want to do when your configuring AVG is go through the Online Shield Web Protection, Scan configurations, and the Resident Shield and add Report Enhanced set of Potentially Unwanted Programs (PUPS) for better detection.

With this you also get AVG's LinkScanner technology. It installs an addon for IE and Firefox that tells you if a website is clean, the IP address, and time of last scan.



AVG's Linkscanner can also be downloaded for free:

http://linkscanner.avg.com/

Another feature that is important to me is its plugin for email clients. Specifically TheBat!. It integrates right into TheBat!'s plugins and is configurable through the Antivirus rather than the email client. It will scan incoming emails and their attachments. If a virus is found it will tag the email with whatever you have it set to. The default tag is *****VIRUS***** Along with the tagging you can have it automatically quarantine the attachment in case of an accidental download. It also adds text to emails to verify for you and your recipient that the email is clean as well.



Last but not least is the update screen. Obviously being updated is a crucial element to being protected. Outdated databases are no good.



AVG also offers a free antivirus solution, but it doesnt go as in depth as its paid counterpart. The paid version has rootkit detection, gaming mode, phishing detection, and more importantly an online module which makes it a real time solution rather than just a scanner or second opinion.



Overall this program is very light on system resources weighing in at about 50Mbs. More importantly is the CPU usage and I/O Total. Neither of them are significant enough to even register in the task manager.

Now onto what everyone wants to know. How well does it protect the end user.

These first few detection results are from AV-Comparatives. AVC strongly urges you to not pay attention to this first test. But here is where AVG ranks in it anyways.



The second test is more important. Its the on demand test which more closely simulates what a user will see in the real world. AVG came out of the test detecting 94.2% of infections from AVC's collection. Of this collection it had a total of 10 false positives.



And AVG's removal capabilities



Here is a list of certifications that AVG has received. They consist of VB100 awards, ICSA Labs certifications, PC Welt Comparative tests, and Global Products Excellence Awards.

http://free.avg.com/us-en/awards-references

Rising Antivirus Free Review

First and foremost they have a free counterpart here:

http://www.freerav.com/

Its running well on my Win 7 Pro x64 VM. Its one of the free AV's that allows you to turn off the news feed reader which is a nice touch. It offers free email scanning as well as their cloud technology. It has a nice built in captcha feature as well. If you change settings your required to do a captcha when applying the settings. It adds another level of protection and you also have the option to password protect them as well.

When doing a scan by default you scan the C: Drive (or what ever drive Rising AV is installed on I assume), the boot sector, memory, risks, and the system core.

Down to the manual scan. By default it has classifications by Types of Files, Types of Viruses, Split Compound Files, and Optimization options. Also built in is a heuristics engine that is default at medium.

With a scan done with default medium settings it took 22 minutes and 3 seconds to scan 75,485 files.

With a scan done on all default medium settings with the addition of scanning for suspected boot sector viruses, suspected Windows viruses, suspected malicious script, and suspected macro viruses the scan took 22 minutes and 22 seconds. For the increased scanning options and the measly 19 second addition its well worth it I would say.

By default it also has smart speedup which I assume is some sort of caching where it will only scan files with a changed date recently or something to that effect.

Overall it has a very clean and appealing interface. Lots of options that other free AV's dont offer such as the email IMAP and POP scanning, x86 has HIPS (working on the x64 version), and even has the ability to turn off the news feeds that others like Avast and Avira dont allow.

As far as detections I keep the settings as I did for the second test and everything I threw at it from MDL was detected. However that wasnt very much.

They have a huge list of certifications including VB100's and WestCoastLabs.

http://www.rising-global.com/About-Us/Awards-Certifications/Awards-Certifications.html






Friday, July 9, 2010

Sunbelt ClearCloud DNS Service

Sunbelt has released a beta ClearCloud DNS Service. It aims at filtering out malicious websites via DNS before the enduser actually gets to them. If the user happens to stumble across a website that is infected they get a warning screen from Sunbelt.



For more information on how it works:

http://forums.clearclouddns.com/messageview.aspx?catid=247&threadid=5147&enterthread=y

How to set ClearCloud DNS up on your operating system:

http://forums.clearclouddns.com/messageview.aspx?catid=237&threadid=5146&enterthread=y

Be sure to test out the DNS service to make sure its working by visiting these webpages:

test.ssdsandbox.net

clearcloudtest.ssdsandbox.net

Windows 7 Start Button Changer Updated

UPDATE: 11.04.10. Windows 7 Start Button Changer has been updated to v 2.5. Changes: Fixed some bugs & Recoded it from scratch.


http://www.thewindowsclub.com/windows-7-start-button-changer-released

For my personal favorite collection of start orbs visit this post here to get started:

http://pc-babble.blogspot.com/2010/03/windows-start-orb-collection.html

Thursday, July 8, 2010

How to Automatically Update Your iTunes Library

I have recently imported my music collection into iTunes and it totals about 22Gbs on a 1.5TB external HD.

I was looking for a way to automatically import music into iTunes without having to manual add a folder or file every time from iTunes drop down menu. I also didnt want to use the built in iTunes auto-sync folder as it would defeat my library structure and require me to import all 22Gbs of music into my laptop HD where I dont want it.

I found a program called iTunes Duplicate Song Manager with Folder Watcher, iTunesDSM for short.

Here is a download link:

http://sourceforge.net/projects/itunesdsm/

The best perk of all this is Windows 7 x64 compatible where other similar programs havent been updated since Windows XP or Vista and are only x86 compatible.









The first two images are what I paid particular attention to as they include the settings that I need to accomplish what Im looking for.

The music directions tab is self explanatory. You basically select the folders that you want to monitor for changes including .mp3 or iTunes video files.

The background monitor tab is also self explanatory. You either want it to monitor folders or you dont. If you didnt you wouldnt be reading this.

I didnt pay any attention to the start up tab as I dont want this starting with Windows. I only want it to monitor folders after I have moved my music into my main folder and have it organized and tagged the way I want before it gets imported into iTunes.

The iTunes settings tab can be confusing. Here I choose to default iTunes XML library and decided not to check either item. I let iTunes handle those tasks on its own with its own preferences.

Now on to it working its magic. To get started navigate to the "add tracks to itunes tab". Here iTunesDSM will compare your Library XML file to the folder that you have choose to house your music files. What ever doesnt match gets added.





From here iTunes takes over. I have my iTunes automatically configured to auto-volumize all songs and to automatically download album art.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Panda Security Releases 2011 Beta

Panda Security, the makers of one of the best cloud AV's on the market has released their Panda Security 2011 Beta Suite. Its available for free to download and trial here:

http://www.pandasecurity.com/homeusers/downloads/beta/global-protection/

Be sure to read the change log as well as the known issues and as always be cautious with Beta software.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Comodo Internet Security Complete GiveAway

Meliah over at Comodo has decided to give away CIS for 1 year free for those who cant afford it. If youre interested head over to the Comodo forums and sign up for a free account. Instructions to recieve your key can be found here:

http://forums.comodo.com/melihs-corner-ceo-talkdiscussionsblog/if-you-cant-afford-itthen-just-ask-t57136.0.html;msg401679#msg401679

An overview and feature set can be seen here at Comodo's site:

http://www.comodo.com/home/internet-security/internet-security-complete.php

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Online Screen Calibration

This site runs through the gamma, brightness and phasing tests. It also offers a dead pixel fixer, which I didnt include in the screenshots. If your going to use the dead pixel fixing utility be sure to read the disclaimer.









http://screenperfect.aperturegames.com/