Photographer reveals the secret of the Windows XP desktop image

Charles O’Rear is the photographer who took Bliss, the image that became the desktop of every single Windows XP computer in the world. Billions saw it and probably think the photo is so perfect and colorful that it is computer generated—or at least Photoshopped. O’Rear reveals the origin of the photo in this video.

via Photographer reveals the secret of the Windows XP desktop image.

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LastPass Now Tells You Which Heartbleed-Affected Passwords to Change

This week, a giant security hole came to light that affects a large portion of the internet. As different sites recover, you’ll need to change your passwords, and now LastPass tells you when to do so.

Due to the nature of the Heartbleed bug (read more here), you’ll need to wait until affected sites update their infrastructure before you change your passwords. LastPass’ ever-useful Security Check tool now includes recommendations for Heartbleed, letting you know which sites have closed the hole, when, and if you should update yet.

To run the tool, just click on the LastPass extension and head to Tools > Security Check. After running the tool, you’ll get the results (shown above) so you know what passwords to change. Hit the link to read more.

via LastPass Now Tells You Which Heartbleed-Affected Passwords to Change.

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How to avoid heartburn, err, Heartbleed; Must Read!!!

Don’t change your password. It’s strange advice to hear when the so-called Heartbleed bug is leaving databases all over the web open and exposed, but it’s applicable. Yes, security has been compromised for many of your favorite websites and services (including Google, Flickr and Steam, at least initially) but protecting yourself isn’t quite as easy as changing your password. Unlike past exploits, Heartbleed isn’t a database leak or a list of plaintext logins; it’s a flaw in one of the web’s most prevalent security protocols — and until its fixed, updating your login information won’t do a darn thing to protect you. What, then, can you do to protect yourself? Wait, watch and verify.

Click link to read more→via How to avoid heartburn, err, Heartbleed.

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Now that we know about the Heartbleed bug that allows access to sensitive internet data usually locked down by OpenSSL encryption, Google is of course one of the internet services hard at work applying fixes. The folks in Mountain View announced today that main services like Apps, App Engine, Gmail, Play, Search, Wallet and YouTube are already patched. There’s no need to worry about Chrome or Chrome OS, as those two bits of software aren’t affected by the vulnerability. Android is almost there, as all versions of the mobile operating system are immune to the security flaw save for 4.1.1. For that lone exception, Google says patching details are being sent to its partners for distribution. While the key bits have been secured, there’s on-going work to update other services like Cloud SQL, Google Compute Engine and others.

via Engadget.

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Heartbleed Bug

Heartbleed Bug

The Heartbleed Bug is a serious vulnerability in the popular OpenSSL cryptographic software library. This weakness allows stealing the information protected, under normal conditions, by the SSL/TLS encryption used to secure the Internet. SSL/TLS provides communication security and privacy over the Internet for applications such as web, email, instant messaging IM and some virtual private networks VPNs.The Heartbleed bug allows anyone on the Internet to read the memory of the systems protected by the vulnerable versions of the OpenSSL software. This compromises the secret keys used to identify the service providers and to encrypt the traffic, the names and passwords of the users and the actual content. This allows attackers to eavesdrop on communications, steal data directly from the services and users and to impersonate services and users.

via Heartbleed Bug.

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Seven Safety Tips for People Sticking with Windows XP

the-end-of-windows-xpEverybody panic! On Tuesday, April 8, Microsoft will stop “supporting” Windows XP. If you’re still using a computer that’s running this old operating system, you do have options. I covered them very recently: Still on Windows XP? Here’s Some Bad Advice.

But what if none of the options work for you? What if, for a perfectly good reason (like the fact that upgrading from XP will cost you either money or time, and you have neither), you’re stuck with a computer using XP? What’s going to happen to you and your computer on April 9?

Nothing you’ll notice, at least not right away. Windows XP will continue to work. But your risk of a security breach into your computer increases over time. Microsoft is adamant that Windows XP can no longer be considered a safe place to store your digital assets.

Even though the operating system has been repaired (“patched”) literally over 1,000 times, it’s got an old foundation, and it can’t stand up to modern security threats. Unless you want your data stolen, your home network hacked, or your computer taken over to be used as a slave to send spam, you need to get off this creaky platform. That’s what Microsoft says.

But if you have to keep using an old XP machine, you can decrease your exposure in a few ways:

1. Get the last version.

Make sure you have the final version of Windows XP. Connect your computer to the Internet and let it update itself. Or find Windows Update on your computer and let it run. Make your version of XP as secure as possible, because it’s not going to get any better after this. Continue reading

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Laughing Is Happiness

I know it’s in Chinese but really this is awesome, STR

Laughing Is Happiness.

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