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MousePad Networking is dedicated to providing service to home and small business users. Specializing in PC hardware, Microsoft Windows Operating Systems, virus and spyware removal, and small networks, we are focused on providing quality service at reasonable prices. We offer PC setup and repair, Microsoft Windows Operating Systems installation and maintenance, and home & small office network setup & consulting.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Windows 10 Likely to Land at PC Makers This Week

Microsoft is in the final phase of preparation ahead of the July 29 launch date for the next big update to its marquee software.

·        by Don Reisinger  @donreisinger
July 6, 2015 7:26 AM PDT Updated: July 6, 2015 8:13 AM PDT

The updated Start button layout in Windows 10: one of many improvements coming on July 29.Nick Statt/CNET

Microsoft keeps wending its way past the mile markers en route to getting Windows 10 out to the public on time.
The software titan is putting the finishing touches on the operating system software and will finalize its prerelease development by July 10, The Verge is reporting, citing people who claim to have knowledge of the company's plans. This version of Windows 10, called "release to manufacturing," will then be sent to PC makers to be bundled into their products.
Windows 10, which is slated to launch on July 29, is Microsoft's big opportunity to make up for the missteps of Windows 8, which arrived three years ago. While Windows overall remains the dominant force in desktop operating systems, running on over 90 percent of computers worldwide, according to NetMarketShare, Windows 8 dramatically failed to catch on with consumers and businesses -- it has mustered just 13 percent market share worldwide, far behind the 61 percent share for Windows 7 and just barely ahead of the now ancient Windows XP.
The issues with Windows 8 were numerous, ranging from Microsoft's design choice, called Metro, to a steep learning curve for those used to the old days of Windows. Windows 8 also came as consumers and business users were increasingly attracted to tablets and smartphones, which typically ran either Apple's iOS software or Google's Android.
With Windows 10, Microsoft is looking to make amends. The Start button is back and the design a bit more traditional, while CEO Satya Nadella has made clear that Microsoft is a "mobile-first (and cloud-first)" company that will allow for Windows 10 to run on multiple device types without sacrificing features. There's also a new browser, called Edge, to replace the decades-old Internet Explorer, as well as a more robust version of Cortana, Microsoft's voice-enabled digital software assistant.
To boost adoption, Microsoft will offer free upgrades to customers currently running Windows 7 and Windows 8 -- a first for the company. Microsoft has even softened its stance in its longstanding battle with pirates, saying that any pirated copy of Windows can be upgraded to Windows 10 free of charge.
While Microsoft seems to be on pace for a July 29 launch, the company cautioned last week that the rollout could be slow going. The first to get the high-stakes update to the company's marquee software will be those who have been helping Microsoft get the kinks out of Windows 10, working through the Windows Insider program that went into effect last October.
Then things will progress "in waves, slowly scaling up after July 29th," Microsoft said in a blog post that hinted at fine-tuning of the software yet to come. "Each day of the rollout, we will listen, learn and update the experience for all Windows 10 users."
That's for those who will be upgrading computers already in their possession. The release-to-manufacture (RTM) version of the software will be going into new hardware getting ready to go on sale.
Microsoft itself has yet to say when its operating system will hit the RTM phase, but in the past, the company has announced the milestone on its site.
Microsoft did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Thursday, April 30, 2015


The following can be found on the US Department of Justice's (DOJ) website at: http://www.justice.gov/doj/spam

Many consumers receive a variety of unsolicited commercial e-mail (also known as "spam") in their offices or at home. While people don't always like getting spam, much of it has a legitimate business purpose. Unsolicited e-mails, however, are often the initial means for criminals, such as operators of fraudulent schemes, to contact and solicit prospective victims for money, or to commit identity theft by deceiving them into sharing bank and financial account information.
The following information, e-mail addresses and contacts noted below are provided for your reference if you have received a particular type of unsolicited email and would like to report or forward it on to law enforcement authorities.
Internet Fraud
Hurricane Katrina Relief Fraud
The Hurricane Katrina Fraud Task Force was established by Attorney General Alberto Gonzales to combat all types of fraud relating to Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath, with an initial emphasis on charity fraud, identity theft, insurance fraud, and procurement and government-benefit fraud. See the Hurricane Katrina Fraud Task Force Web Site for more information.
Africa-Based Investment Schemes
An increasing volume of spam consists of e-mail from a person who represents himself or herself as having some African affiliation, and who is soliciting you to help him or her transfer illegally obtained or questionable funds out of a nation in Africa. (Some more recent e-mails purport to involve moving money out of Afghanistan.) These solicitations are fraudulent, and may violate one or more federal criminal laws.
Do not send any money or financial account information if you receive one of these e-mails (or a letter or fax of a similar nature). See the U.S. Secret Service Financial Crimes Division web page for more information.
If you have responded to one of these online solicitations and have lost money, please contact the Internet Crime Complaint Center, a joint venture of the FBI and the National White Collar Crime Center, and use theICCC's online complaint form.
Medical Products and Devices
To report e-mail that involves possibly fraudulent claims about medical devices or products (for example, so-called "miracle" cures) please email the Food and Drug Administration at webcomplaints@ora.fda.gov
Email links icon
Financial Investments
Report investment-related spam e-mails to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission using the SEC Tips, Complaints and Referrals Portal
If you want to report other possible online crime, including online fraud (for example, "get-rich-quick" schemes or online auction fraud) whether or not you have lost money, please use the ICCC's online complaint form.
Other Types of Unsolicited Commercial E-Mail
For more information about reporting unsolicited e-mail that does not fall into any of the above categories, see the Federal Trade Commission's Spam E-mail web site.
To file a complaint about a violation of the National Do Not Call Registry or to register your telephone number on the Registry, please go to www.donotcall.gov.
Fact Sheets from the U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US-CERT)
Updated April 20, 2015

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

6 Tips for Avoiding Viruses, MalWare and Other Unwanted Programs

1. Know which Anti-Virus software that you are running

Do not be tricked by messages from different programs on the screen prompting to scan your computer. Know the name of your installed Anti-Virus software (AVG, Symantec/Norton, McAfee, Kaspersky, Sophos, Webroot, etc.)

2. Do not click on ads that you see on websites

Often, a website that you trust can be compromised to display messages to the side (or even pop up) that tell you that your computer is running slow or that you could be infected with SpyWare. Clicking on these links could result in AdWare, Fake Anti-Virus programs or other types of MalWare being installed on your computer.

3. Try to avoid installing "special" viewers in order to play certain videos that you find online

Most videos require Adobe Flash Player (www.adobe.com), Adobe ShockWave Player (www.adobe.com), Java (www.java.com) or Microsoft Silverlight (www.microsoft.com) to view them. If you are prompted to install another viewer or to update one of these viewers, go directly to the publisher's site to get the installation/update (do not allow the video to install it.

4. Remember "Nothing is Free"

Everything has a price. If you are downloading free software or digital content (music, videos, movies,…), be sure to scan it with your Anti-Virus software before attempting to install/play it. If an installation is required, please read each screen before accepting wwhat is being requested (many times, you are agreeing to receive ads for daily deals, share your personal information or even give control of your Internet browsing to additional programs that will also be installed).

5. Use a reputable source to acquire software/content

Purchase your security and performance tuning software from a retailer that you trust, consult with a professional and see what they recommend or do some research and see what objective people are saying.

6. Do not be extorted by fake Anti-Virus programs

There are some so-called "free" security scans out there that have been know to block access to all of your files unless you pay to "activate" their premium features. Do not pay a "ransom to get your files back (are you really comfortable giving them your credit card information?).