Monday, December 24, 2007

Keep All Your Other Stuff Updated!

Regular readers of my articles probably know that they must keep their security software up to date at all times, in order to surf safely on the Web. But what about all the other stuff we have on our computers? Things like word processors, spreadsheets, readers, Power Point viewers, media players, etc. Not to mention Windows itself, and its components. They must all be updated as well, to prevent hackers from muscling in to your PC. This used to be a real chore keeping everything up to date and staying safe on today's Internet.

Not any more. You are going to use a nice, quick tool to check what needs updating on your PC, and then to actually (and easily) update it. But before we begin you should see if you have multiple copies of the same program, especially Adobe Flash Player and Sun Java JRE. Neither program removes old copies when installing new ones, or updates.

In Windows XP, click Start, Control Panel, Add or Remove Programs. In Vista, click Start, Control Panel, Programs and Features. If you have more than one copy of Adobe or Java, keep the latest one with the highest update or version number. Delete the others by clicking the Remove button. Note that Adobe Flash Player is not the same animal as Adobe Reader.

Now go to Read the notes and click Start Now. Read more notes and choose the default or thorough inspection; click Start. When the inspection is finished, you will get a list of programs that are not up to date, and therefore potentially dangerous. Follow the links to update each program. You will likely need Administrator privileges to do this, so be sure you are using your main, Administrator account.

Some updates will restart your browser. If you lose your results page, just run the Inspector again. Watch the process closely. Certain updates will install toolbars on your computer, unless you deselect this option. Bookmark the Secunia home page, and run the Inspector once a month or so.

Syd Tash is a noted computer security consultant and author of How to Protect Your Computer Online - A Complete Guide. He has been keeping Internet surfers safe and secure since the last century. Find out how he does it; protect your own computer with five layers of protection right here:

Oh, and here's a great resource on Free Spanish articles about Jewelry: Artículos Libres De la Joyería

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