Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Dell's Vostro so-so review

If you like reading Walt Mossberg's reviews in The Wall Street Journal, here's a video clip of his review of Dell's new Vostro computer line. Intended for small, small businesses, the system gets only a mediocre rating by Walt. Put your money into the home office line of Dell's if that's still your brand.

Dell Vostro audio-video review

Is your computer down for the count?

Even with better security suites, combining anti-virus, spyware and firewall, we still see the summer meltdown - about the fifth year in a row that Computer Clarity has been called to fix or diagnose a computer problem due to a slow computer that just won't do anything. My book, Computer Ease, has an entire chapter covering spyware. The Chicago Computer Soceity reviewer said that chapter alone is worth the $14.95 price of the book.

It happens most in families where children of all ages use the Internet, and inadvertently get themselves into trouble. Often it is not worth fixing the computer because of the high labor cost involved, and because if they did it once they will likely do it again, without a proper protection suite.

Consumer Reports recently cites the facts:
  • Lack of protection on the Internet has cost consumers $7 billion over two years.
  • Computer viruses have prompted 1.8 million households to junk their PCs over the past two years, while spyware has claimed another 850,000 machines in the past six months.
  • And, one-third of U.S. households don't protect their computers from spyware.

Best anti-virus, spyware and firewall suites include:
Computer Associates Internet Security Suite
Panda Software

Better to spend $50/year on protection than send your computer to the next electronics recycling event... which is Sept. 29th at Motorola in Schaumburg. Do not throw computers, printers, or monitors in the trash.