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 Gameguru Mania News - Dec,31 2004 -  
New Year's Tech Reading - tech
(hx) 04:43 PM CET - Dec,31 2004 - Post a comment / read (2)

SECURITY...

  • Adware installed through Windows Media files - In short, the well-known copyright management/protection firm Overpeer has figured out how to install adware through Windows Media files. The technique exploits features of the Windows Media DRM functionality to launch special Internet Explorer windows that display popup ads and that also attempt to download and install adware/spyware. This happens when the user opens the Windows Media file for playing.
  • IE's FTP Client can be Used to Send Mail - Internet Explorer 6 SP1 can be tricked into sending mail through its FTP client (example) without any more user interaction than loading a page. Internet Explorer will accept %0a and %0d in URLs. In FTP URLs, it will accept them in the username part of the URL. Due to the similarity between the FTP and SMTP protocols, this can be used to send mail. Spammers could host websites that contain images causing website visitors to spam more people. There are probably other protocols that the FTP client could be used to maliciously access.
  • Trojan horse threatens latest Windows XP - The program--dubbed "Phel," an anagram of "Help"--infects visitors to a maliciously-created Web site through Internet Explorer's Help controls, Symantec warned in an advisory this week. A bug in the malicious program may prevent it from infecting some computers, the security company said. The Trojan horse exploits a vulnerability, found in October, in how Internet Explorer and Windows XP Service Pack 2 handle help files called from Web pages. Another story can be found here.
  • Cabir worm code wriggles onto Web - Sophos said on Wednesday that a 32-year-old Brazilian programmer has published the source code for the Cabir-H and Cabir-I viruses online and said it could be used by virus writers to create their own variants.
  • New perl packages fix several vulnerabilities - Several vulnerabilities have been discovered in Perl, the popular scripting language - download&install new packages.
  • Availability of Windows 2000 Post-Service Pack 4 COM+ 1.0 Hotfix Rollup Package 31 - This article lists the Microsoft COM+ bugs that are fixed in the Microsoft Windows 2000 Post-Service Pack 4 (SP4) COM+ 1.0 Hotfix Rollup Package 31. Each hotfix rollup package contains all the fixes that were released in the previous Windows 2000 COM+ 1.0 hotfix rollup packages.
  • Single Government ID Moves Closer to Reality - Federal officials are developing government-wide identification card standards for federal employees and contractors to prevent terrorists, criminals and other unauthorized people from getting into government buildings and computer systems.

OFF-TOPIC...

  • World of Warcraft Cartoon - Chapter 7 is up for The Heroes of World of Warcraft.
  • Farm Sim Flash Game - Farm Sim is a simple game that makes you a farmer to shoot down UFOs from abducting your precious cows! Another new flash games can be found here.
  • FBI Investigating Laser Beams Pointed at Aircraft - Apparently the FBI is investigating incidents in Cleveland and Colorado Springs. They issued a warning on December 14th.
  • Tsunami Satellite Images - Here is a collection of before/after satellite pictures of the devastation in Asia due to the tsunami/earthquake.
  • Tsunami Adds to Belief in Animals' "Sixth Sense" - Wild animals seem to have escaped the Indian Ocean tsunami, adding weight to notions they possess a "sixth sense" for disasters, experts said Thursday. Sri Lankan wildlife officials have said the giant waves that killed over 24,000 people along the Indian Ocean island's coast seemingly missed wild beasts, with no dead animals found.
  • Fly-eating robot powers itself - Scientists at the University of the West of England (UWE) have designed a robot that does not require batteries or electricity to power itself. Instead, it generates energy by catching and eating houseflies. Dr Chris Melhuish and his Bristol-based team hope the robot, called EcoBot II, will one day be sent into zones too dangerous for humans, potentially proving invaluable in military, security and industrial areas.
  • Top 10 New Year's Sex Resolutions - Check it out! :P
  • Akiane - 10-year-old prodigy - Just 10, Akiane Kramarik is dazzling everybody with her painting and poetry. She is also compiling a book of more than 300 poems, some long, some short, all meaningful and symbolic, And each painting has a corresponding poem

TECHNOLOGY...

  • Commodore Computer Brand Sold - The company that owns the famed Commodore computer brand has been sold to Yeahronimo Media Ventures, a Beverly Hills, California, digital music distributor.
  • LokiTorrent fights MPAA legal attack - The latest peer-to-peer site to come into the legal crosshairs of the motion-picture industry promised this week to fight, and put out a virtual hat to finance its legal fund. LokiTorrent, a Web site and index of files available through a peer-to-peer technology known as BitTorrent, posted a letter from the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) on its site on Tuesday. The letter states that the MPAA has filed suit in district court in Texas against the site and demands that Loki Torrent cease linking to video files that could infringe on studios' copyrights.

HARDWARE...

  • PlayStation 3 GPU: NV40 and NV50 Hybrid with XDR DRAM, Says Report - A report over Japanese web-site PC Watch suggests that the PlayStation 3 graphics processing unit will use NVIDIA's technologies found in the current NV40 generation of its own chips as well as numerous techniques developed for the next-generation part known under NV50 code-name. Still, despite of circuitries of the company's desktop chips found in the GPU, according to NVIDIA's chief Jen-Hsun Huang, the PlayStation 3 GPU has nothing to do with Microsoft Windows, Microsoft DirectX or OpenGL and will use Sony's API for the console. Naturally, the PlayStation 3 graphics processing units supports XDR DRAM memory developed by Rambus. While there is nothing new in Rambus memory for Sony, NVIDIA has never worked with memory by Rambus.
  • AMD, Intel sample new processors - AMD and Intel have reportedly sampled new processors to clients in Taiwan. Samples of Intel's upcoming 600-series Pentium 4 processors, which feature Speed Step technology, EM64T, and the Execution Disable Bit, are apparently making the rounds. AMD seems, however, to be still one-step ahead of chipmakers in the development of dual-core CPUs, with market reports saying that AMD has already sent samples of its dual-core Opteron chips to a number of select clients
  • ATI's SLI to work without connector - ATI's way of doing SLI called AMR (ATI Multi Rendering) will work differently from Nvidia's now world famous SLI. ATI will make its SLI work without a small printed circuit board (PCB) to interconnect the cards.
  • Nforce 5 to clock Pentium 4 bus to 1200MHz - The NForce5 chipset will be a highly overclockable chipset. TheInquirer's sources confirmed that the Nvidia Pentium 4 chipset will go up to FSB 1200MHz, using 300MHz rather than 200MHz multiples.
  • Microsoft SPOT and Suunto n3 Smart Watch review - The SPOT watches also are something that people don't see everyday so you still call this a tech gadget despite of the fact the technology has had constant delays, products are still fresh in the market. It was unbelievable how many people asked to see the watch or just wanted to see the different features that I had enabled on the watch. Even a few people were going to do further research on the watch to see if it was something that would be a good present. Unfortunately however, SPOT and the idea behind Smart Watches suffers from certain shortcomings that not necessarily have to do with the service itself, the most important is perhaps that many of the services currently offered by MSN Direct are now commonly available on cell phones...
  • Samsung YH-999 Portable Media Center - The Samsung YH-999 is a wonderful first generation PMC device. If you were to ask me for some positive attributes about the YH-999, it would be the following: lightweight, slim, beautiful, and sleek. It certainly is an eye catcher of a device. The 3.5 inch LCD display is a bit smaller than Creative's version of the PMC but it's bright and beautiful. The speaker system is loud enough if you don't want to use headphones but hey – the headphones aren't bad either so you can use them if your surroundings are too loud.
  • The Best Compact Digicam for $150 - In this roundup, AnandTech have examined three popular 3 megapixel cameras: Fuji FinePix A330, Kodak EasyShare CX7330, and Olympus D-540. All three are entry-level cameras at the $150 price point with similar features.
  • Tranquil T2.e - Silent Media Center PC - The Tranquil is definitely a smaller machine than the Hush, but that doesn't come as a huge surprise when you look at what's inside. Instead of going for an Intel Pentium 4 based solution, Tranquil has chosen a VIA C3 based platform. This means that the motherboard is tiny, allowing for a much smaller system case.
  • Leadtek WinFast A400 Ultra/GT TDH - The most obvious selling point of these two WinFast A400 boards is the cooling solution. Not only does it look the part, but it's quiet and extremely effective too. Both the GT and Ultra variants we've looked at have exhibited impressive overclocks, and the A400 GT is almost irresistible when you look at the potential headroom in both core and RAM clocks. Away from raw performance, both of these boards come with an impressive bundle of games - Of course, as with all software bundles they may be titles you own, but if not you'll be chuffed to bits with what's on offer. Finally, anyone eyeing up the A400 Ultra will find themselves with dual DVI support, a feature being increasingly called for these days.
  • Zalman's CNPS7700-AlCu cooler  - At just over $30, the ZM80A-HP isn't cheap, but its price isn't outrageous. There aren't many passive graphics chip cooling solutions available today, and there are even fewer appropriate for high-end cards and overclocking. The fact that there's potential for the cooler to last through multiple graphics card upgrades makes it even more attractive. In the end, the ZM80A-HP is the ultimate graphics cooler for a high-end silent gaming rig.
  • Gigabyte 3D Rocket Cooler Pro (GH-PCU22-VG) - The little touches that Gigabyte throws in make this cooler a very solid offering. You get thermal paste, a manual fan speed control that can be installed in a 3.5" drive bay or PCI slot, a decent manual, and quick and easy installation for P4 and K7/K8 processors. It's a very cool deal indeed.
  • Swiftech H20-120 REV.3 Liquid Cooling Kit - At $220 MSRP, this is definitely an "enthusiast" product. This kit will appeal to the power-driven user who is competent and/or motivated enough to design and tailor his/her personal computer, using the components that best fit his/her needs. At 34 dBA, the kit allows power-users to push their system to the limit, without sacrificing comfort of operations. It will satisfy most of users right out of the box, but will also appeal to the extreme tweaker in search of totally silent operations who will either use a good quality fan controller or rewire the fan to operate at 7 or 5 volts, for a practically noiseless cooling system.
  • Diskology Disk Jockey - There are many different modes of operation to the Jockey, but in my opinion, the most useful is Mode 0, Standard Mode. It can be very convenient to be able to quickly hook up a spare hard drive to your computer in a hot-swappable fashion. You can't boot from it, but you can still use it for easy backups to separate drives. After all, redundancy is the key to real backup. Also, if you are having problems with the disk inside one computer, you can easily pop the case off and plug that drive into a clean-working PC (using the Jockey), and use the clean PC to perform any operations to the problematic disk, whether they are virus scans, spyware cleaning, etc. I can think of multiple uses.
  • SilverStone LC03V case - Overall this is a really good case and would be great for your HTPC or server if you plan on building one. The paint job on this case is amazing and the aluminum bezel will really stand out in your house. The removable motherboard tray and drive cages make installation much easier and faster which is always a good thing. The VFD and bright blue LEDs will add a lot to the case from a functional and aesthetic standpoint
  • Klipsch Promedia vs Creative GigaWorks vs Logitech Z-680 - Dreamnid.com has a round-up of all the high-end speakers.
  • ViewSonic VP171b 17-inch 8ms TFT LCD monitor - The biggest chink in the VP171b's armor is the overly saturated colors on brighter intensities. Tweaking the available settings can help to minimize this problem, however, the limited choice of the OSD means you only have a little headroom to play with. This is another problem with the VP171b. ViewSonic has not only done away with the numbering system, the scales on different options are not the same as well. Fortunately, setting up is usually a one off affair. For other display anomalies, the auto calibration button works very well to clear things up.

GUIDES...

  • Rojak Pot's ATI Radeon X800 voltage modding guide - There will be two different voltage modding methods for the GPU and two for the memory chips. These methods have been used by many modders so they shouldn't pose any problems to you.
  • Modding Boot Camp - Blowholes & Handles - For this installment in my series on modding basics, I'll be covering fitting case handles and blowholes - it seems logical to me anyway, as they both tend to be fitted on the top panel of a c
  • Terms Used To Describe How A Loudspeaker Sounds - Here are some common terms to describe loudspeaker sound. "Forward" indicates that vocals, male and female, tend to be very present, almost as if the singer were standing in front of the plain of the speakers. It can be a negative term, too--if singers sound too close up it may mean the midrange is boosted or exaggerated. The opposite is "recessed," which means that midrange sounds like singers and choruses seem to be farther back, a bit distant-sounding and well behind the plain of the speakers.
  • How To Create Your Own Computer Games - Have you ever wanted to create your own virtual worlds through which to adventure and slay beasts? Find out how you can, even without programming experience. You might be the next John Carmack!
  • How to fix Mom's computer - Fairly useful tutorial for beginners. Another interesting tools/tutorials can be found here.
  • Bootcamp 358: Browser tuning tips - Some pretty cool (and easy to do) tips to help speed up that old web browser
  • What You Need to Know About Windows Server 2003 x64 Edition and Windows XP Profession - The primary advantage to a 64-bit desktop, however, is performance. According to Microsoft, systems based on the x64 platform achieve a small performance bump simply by running the native 64-bit Windows OS and an even bigger bump when you run these systems in combination with 64-bit software. And 64-bit systems can access lots of RAM: The AMD x64 line can access as much as 1TB of RAM; the Intel Xeon EM64T can access as much as 64GB of RAM.

SOFTWARE...

  • Picture It! and Digital Image Security Update - This update addresses a vulnerability that could allow malicious code to run on your computer through a specially crafted image file.
  • AirSnare v0.6.7- AirSnare (download) is another tool to add to your Wireless Intrusion Detection Toolbox. AirSnare will alert you to unfriendly MAC addresses on your network and will also alert you to DHCP requests taking place. If AirSnare detects an unfriendly MAC address you have the option of tracking the MAC address's access to IP addresses and ports or by launching Ethereal upon a detection.
  • Fresh Diagnose 6.90 - Fresh Diagnose is an utility designed to analyze and benchmark your computer system. It can analyze and benchmark many kinds of hardware, such as CPU performance, hard disk performance, video system information, mainboard information, and many more.
  • RightMark Memory Analyzer 3.45 - RightMark Memory Analyzer provides stable and accurate measurements of the most important low-level characteristics of the CPU/Chipset/RAM subsystem of your PC.
  • AnyDVD 4.4.0.0 beta - AnyDVD is a driver, which descrambles DVD-Movies automatically in the background. This DVD appears unprotected and region code free for all applications and the Windows operating system as well. With AnyDVD's help copy tools like CloneDVD, Pinnacle Instant Copy, InterVideo DVD-Copy, etc. are able to copy CSS protected Movies. This new beta version added support for a new version of the "Sony ARccOS protection" as found on "Resident Evil - Apocalypse" (US) to the option to remove "Protection based on unreadable Sectors"
  • Realtek ALC AC97 Audio Driver v3.68 - Realtek released version 3.68 driver for their ALC AC97 audio chipsets
last 10 comments:
Bert(07:42 PM CET - Dec,31 2004 )
It absolute floors me why the heck Microsoft and its OS allows executable
content and the "fricken features" in Microsoft Office, media, or graphics files. Does anyone other than ad/spy companies actually use executable content? And why allow the range of ability the executable content can
do? Maybe there should be a roll-back of features where media and
graphics files where just that, media and graphics files.

v1m(03:58 AM CET - Jan,03 2005 )
You're right--it's insane. Nobody should use Windows Media Player, anyway. If you're stuck on a PC, then the open source VLC plays most .wmv files.

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